Having been asked why I was laughing ...
... I have just found myself reading the entire article to my two teenage sons who are on the verge of wetting themselves with laughter -- great work!
1854 posts • joined 14 Nov 2007
... I have just found myself reading the entire article to my two teenage sons who are on the verge of wetting themselves with laughter -- great work!
"...by adding a bit of a highly inflammable and volatile liquid with the chemical formula C6H6O" -- Roger Kynaston
Phenol? You first!
"Even if you are pessimistic about long term effects, you cannot round up any realistic guess at the nuclear impact to a level where it even counts as a significant part of the tragedy." -- me
"That's a very simplistic viewpoint, basically that tragedy equals death and nothing else." -- 1980s_coder
I disagree. What it actually says is that NX << MY where
N is the number of people living in (unnecessary) fear, and I accept your point that it may be large
X is the tragedy of a person living in fear in some arbitrary unit
(What is the El Reg unit of tragedy? Perhaps a 'Verdi')
M is the number of people who actually died (~15,000 < M < ~20,000)
Y is the tragedy of a person dying
I'm not discounting the tragedy of hundreds of thousands of people living in fear, sucks for them, even if they are worried about basically nothing. But I am still saying it's insignificant compared to the tragedy of thousands of people dying.
"I get one lousy capital letter wrong and ... " -- Simon Sharwood
file not found?
tag not recognized?
function not defined?
password not correct?
Probably not the right forum to expect any sympathy with case errors :-)
"... it's ok not to build a wall higher than 10m (or whatever it was), to protect the emergency backup generators for the nuclear core coolant system." --- MIke 125
It's off topic, but I need to rant (again) ...
This annoys me a bit, the idea that nukes can only be considered safe in they are protected from everything. The Tohoku earthquake was a 9.0 magnitude affair epicentered less than 100km offshore, and had an energy of not far off 10 Teratons of TNT --- five hundred million Hiroshimas. Relatively ancient nuclear plant was hit by a massive earthquake and a huge tsunami.
The Tohoku earthquake caused at least 15,000 deaths, probably 20,000. The Fukushima nuclear "disaster" caused, erm, pretty much none. Even if you are pessimistic about long term effects, you cannot round up any realistic guess at the nuclear impact to a level where it even counts as a significant part of the tragedy.
UK mail order rights (e.g. returning non-faulty goods because you don't like them) cease to apply when you click and collect. If they mail it to your house, you have vastly more rights than if you take it from a shop, regardless of whether the payment was made online.
So my guess is they're avoiding the DSRs (Distance Selling Regulations) rather than the Posties.
The Americans sure pay for their data: I use anything from 10 to 30GB per month for £15 in the UK; Hell, I even get some calls and texts thrown in! $10/GB? And it's competitive? Please tell me it's a misprint!
I think Turing might have beaten you to that realisation by about eight decades :-)
"I don't see the "Press 5 or go away" working with the usual cold callers. They are persistent beyond belief even when it is clear you are not interested from the offset."
I have a slightly tailored approach: "Unauthorized access to this system is an offence under the Computer Misuse Act, 1990. The access code is 1234." But I think it's mainly academic - many autodiallers have 'grunt detection' - a bit of software that tries to determine, from aspiration etc., whether the voice on the other end is live or a recording. Anything that sounds dull and flat causes a hang-up. Try it: answer the phone as if you were recording a message!
... there's some pretty cost effective software I have come across that automates the discovery of personal content on publicly accessible web and file servers, and raises alerts accordingly. I think you might even be able to do it with Google Alerts if you used your imagination.
Certainly the Goog, and other major search engines, could easily run a service which lets you know if it discovers things that look like bank account numbers, social security numbers, even addresses, on your site. You set up some exclusions, like the company's own address :-) obviously --- and as soon as you get a notification email, e.g. "The number of publicly accessible bank account numbers on your site has increased from 3 to 123,456, and the new instances are here: ..../path/to/cockup" then you can start doing something.
... is it still a thing? IS2R people were, a few years ago, pretty excited about liquid cooling - either immersing the whole lot in non conductive liquid or pumping it round the racks ... but googling just turns up futurology and hobbyist stuff.
"Getting it right once, will prove nothing." -- eesiginfo
I disagree; surely getting it right once proves that it is not impossible?
" ... economics isn't really all that much good at predicting the next recession ... but it is pretty good at working out why the world is the way it is"
Science is pretty good at working out why the world is the way it is, and we know this because its explanations lead, eventually, to testable predictions. This definition of economics makes it look, to me at least, like little more than a highly specific branch of history.
"This is where googles glass missed a trick, detect when you are gazing idly at a ladys bosom, and desaturate the rest of the picture..."
Actually, this is where The Guardian Aced it with their April Fools day Guardian Goggles --- check out 01:45 where the demonstrator picks up an abandoned Daily Mail in a coffee shop
Many "American" words (fall, faucet), the -ize ending, and the weird date format are originally English exports that they kept. Trash is one of these words.
"Gentlemen all, I do suspect this trash
To be a party in this injury."
-- Iago, Othello, Act 5 Scene 1, W. Shakespeare
1) an old T420 from fleabay with a decent i7, 16GB RAM, 128TB SSD for OS and 1TB Hybrid SSHD for Content (£300 + £100)
2) a Village Instruments eGPU box with a PCI-E interface (£100)
3) a decent PCI video card for the above (£200)
4) (optional) external monitor (£200)
Not only does he get a cheap, tough laptop with decent battery life, but when plugged into the other stuff, back at the dorm, he gets framerates that challenge your average gaming laptop. Feeding the video back into the laptop, rather than an external screen, it's eminently playable (60fps on fairly high graphics settings for many games), but on an external monitor, the frame-rate for any given graphics setting is approximately double (I presume the constraint is the speed of the PCI-E).
Not as portable as any of these covetable boxes, but pretty good going for an impoverished uni student who is away from his home gaming rig for whole WEEKS at a time :-)
Does it look to anybody else that the green rectangle (I eschew the word pine as I am r/g colourblind) should have been in the whitespace in the bottom right, but it has somehow ended up on the top of the picture?
a microwriter-style bluetooth device that sits comfortably in the (either) hand... Never really understood why the portable one handed chording keyboard has not been resurrected.
Them: "We're starting a new project ... can you help us design a ... "
Me: "Sure, that'll be a fun challenge ..."
Them: "We've already committed to technologies X, Y and Z ..."
A significant amount of technology is 'golfware' --- its role in your new project has been decided on not just before you or any other technical person has been approached, but before the decision makers have reached the 19th hole.
Pattern unlock (and to some extent PIN) not that secure --- many screens show some residue of the patters. Face unlock is fun gimmick (although I think I need to know why my eldest son can unlock my phone and not my youngest!) but not good enough to secure your phone.
Who's for an implanted RFID chip?
+1 for the Tasker ref. You can do other stuff as well - keep the phone unlocked if it is in certain locations (GPS) or if earphones are plugged. Redirect calls from certain numbers (boss? mistress?) if you are at home ... lots of great stuff, with such a good visual scripting interface that you can use it to get (certain sorts of) kids interested in scripting and programming ...
"Sounds like the old experiment you can do with cornflour" -- 1980s_coder
+1 for ooblek reference, but is it really the same? In that liquid, it's the mechanics of the starch chains moving over each other (sliding or jamming) which is causing the behaviour --- seems to me that what is happening here is a sort of piling up of particles in front of a penetrating object, rather than any change in the inter-particle interactions?
It seems to me that there are only two strongly justifiable rates for inheritance tax: 0% and 100%; everything in between is a compromise. Corollary: anyone who thinks an intermediate value is more appropriate does believe in some degree of wealth redistribution.
If you are right, Tim, and the money only stays in the family for a few generations, then I suppose it makes little difference that the wealth is temporarily concentrated in such a small area; it does eventually get redistributed by the market when a descendant 'pisses it away'. But what worries me is that the current trend in wealth inequality shows no signs at all of abating.
The problem is when wealth distorts democracy --- big fortunes, whether personal or corporate, are now increasingly used to affect legislation directly (through lobbying and campaign funding) and indirectly (through media ownership used to affect public opinion). This leads to a circle (virtuous for them, vicious for us) which accelerates and buttresses the inequality.
It is also starting to get to the point where you actually have to start with money to make money. Take a particular bugbear of mine: unpaid internships. Even in a society where, by and large, the concept of a minimum wage is accepted. it still seems acceptable for wealthy organisations to place a filter on the workforce to ensure that brains and hard work are not sufficient, you need wealth to start with. I'm not sure I find that acceptable, either on an individual or societal level.
I think in the UK you might need a time machine to sample a selection of 100W light bulbs at the hardware store ...
... but it seemed like a misquote, because it's really sampling them and finding they fall into two distinct populations, rather than simply that they 'vary'
"...doddery old greybeards..." --- AC
... is that twice now you have trotted out that offensive ageist cliché? It's not making you sound as clever as you think it does, possibly quite the opposite. I've met some very bright people in IT, not just in the group 25 years younger than me, but up to 25 years older, too. As you seem to think the solution to all legacy IT is just to spend umpty million I cannot believe you have any real world experience in the industry, otherwise you'd know that all kit is legacy, it's just a matter of degree --- and that management have other priorities than making sure you are happy with your kit.
** And, not that it matters, but some of the latter camp are so far from "doddery" I wouldn't put any money on you staying upright for 5 seconds if you were brave/stupid enough to say it to their faces outside of the office.
"Great for you, I'd like to shift data between my home and my workplace faster than a cyclist with a 32GB USB stick." -- Stuart Longland
I agree - but, to be fair - I cannot remember a time when connected bandwidth, for anything over line-of-sight, was greater than sneakernet. You could carry 20TB of SSDs in a cycle pack without breaking a sweat - you could get a bike to 50Gbps no problem. A van full of LTO5 tape going 100miles is, what, 1000Gbps? A 747 full of Blurays going 3000 miles must be over 200,000Gbps. (Latencies being about 2-3 hours and about 6-7 hours, I'd guess.)
When thinking about, for instance, cloud backup and restore, you have to bear in mind that a 1 Gigabit/sec link is still only about 10TB/day fully soaked.
... I think they suffer from being overshadowed by the article comments
I usually get downvoted for this, but I still believe that the existence of "malicious URLs" is nothing more than the existence of unacceptable browser flaws. Visiting a web site is 'opening a document'; and it is my belief that it should not be possible for data to subvert the application used for viewing that data and it should definitely not be be possible to subvert the system beyond that application.
How you supposed to even know if a URL is malicious until you've clicked on it, especially if it is shortened? Or in a QR code? Sure you can say oh, never click on a shortened URL, never scan a QR code, but then you are missing out on large chunks of functionality.
... if you really want to go, best to marry an American :-)
"You may laugh ...
... The bottom line is that this ridiculous tool that everyone is mocking for using an 8 bit key is only slightly less secure than 4096 bit AES, especially when you are streaming data.. after capturing 4K bits you have almost all you need to start breaking down the crypto..."
Believe me, I'm laughing.
"A suit pocket is fine at work, but what happens when you're wearing jeans and a tshirt at the weekend?"
-- P. Lee
Surely bigphone uses are more likely to be wearing cargo pants than skinny jeans?
On a more serious note, it's not entirely impossible to use several devices - both Android and iOS seem to be pretty good at syncing multiple devices (I have no experience of Windows mobile but I suspect it is the same). It would be nice if devices could share numbers, but some judicious call-diverting does most of what is needed.
"Keeping a weather eye on downloads of a few 1000 examples across the world would be a far better idea and is almost certainly the approach our Intel services use." --- gerdesj
An approach that the senator has just shot to ribbons. Maybe she's the terrorist?
I don't understand why you would put a new GPU in a 64 bit machine running a 3 year old version of a 32bit OS that went out of support two years ago. And I really don't understand why you expected it to work seamlessly. And I really don't understand why you would consider the failure of this edge case to allow you to infer very much at all beyond the specific instance you describe.
"Plenty of people have posted on The Register with information regarding a news story and have gone anonymous because they work for them or used to work for them."
Not only that but The Register has become a focus for those of us who are against the surveillance dragnet. My name's already on the list, obviously (although I strongly support the *targetted* work done by our intelligence services), but as the net closes in, forums like this will need stronger protection.
... remaining locked out, and file a UK small claim to get a refund of all other money ever spent on the account. I bet SONY wouldn't even send a lawyer, and you would win automatically.
"We're not sure it is sound to do the math on this one and declare that a 34 per cent of 26 per cent means about eight per cent of people pulled data from clouds for fear of spying, because the exact nature of the samples isn't explained."
I can help here: it's not sound at all, especially as "others [sic] reasons for repatriating data or services included local laws, or greater comfort doing business with domestic providers." are supersets of the first reason.
If local laws have been changed to prevent US-based hosting, what are the reasons for that? If CIOs have greater comfort doing business with domestic providers, what are the reasons for that? Certainly if I were a CIO explaining why I had pulled US-based hosting, I'd be a lot more comfortable ticking one of the last two reasons.
What amazes me is that a full third of those respondents explicitly cited fear of spooks. This is almost certainly an underestimate: there's some very good motives for not stating this explicitly and hardly any for using it as an excuse to pull US-based hosting when it is done for some other reason.
"Personally I would love to be able to get our satellite signal to other rooms in the house (over IP?) but I haven't found anything to help. Anybody got any suggestions?" -- Owain 1
Sky Gnome will do it over radio, there's a few knocking about on fleabay. You could probably use a Pi to take in an audio stream from the Sky box and stream it over IP, but there's several devices you can buy ready made to do this, e.g. http://www.amazon.co.uk/WiFi-Audio-Music-Receiver-Adapter/dp/B00IHGMGNI
It's hard to beat a landfill android or an ancient iPhone in a decent speaker dock.
Use your home WiFi in and around the house, or use 3G elsewhere; in fact my 3G service is better than my landline internet even in the house.
I should think one could make something quite nice with a Pi, a touch screen and a USB freeview dongle. DAB, on the other hand, seems to be a solution in search of a problem.
My kids, on seeing a 3.5" 1.44 MB* disk in TNMoC: "OMG that's why that funny symbol means 'save', finally it all becomes clear!"
Just told this story to a co-worker. Her response? "OMG, it is! I never realised!"
$DEITY I'm old.
*ok it was actually 1.44 kilokibibytes (1.44 * 1000 * 1024) but that is what we used to call them, unless we were being risqué, then we called them 'stiffies'
"It's very inconsistent. If I went to a Jewish delicatessen and insisted (by invoking the current laws) that they had to serve me a pork sandwich because the law said they couldn't discriminate, I'd be literally tar and feathered by both the right and left." -- Mark 85
Read Lysenko's post above. The Jewish delicatessen is perfectly entitled to not have pork in the shop (would you insist on a pair of Levi's from the building supplies store?) but they are not entitled to refuse to sell you a Bagel *because* you are non-white, female, disabled, LGBTI, a marine, etc. They are perfectly entitled to not serve you because they don't want to, but they can't put up a sign saying "no Irish" even though they can, If they feel like it, refuse to serve you when you walk in and say "Top o' d' morning to yer!" A wedding photographer can simply refuse all gay wedding assignments, but it is unacceptable for them to say "no gay weddings" or even, I would contend, to say "no, because you're gay". All they have to do is say "No". It really is that simple.
+1 for the Z3. I have one - love the camera, love the screen, love it. Most of all I loved showing it to a girl down at the yard and, as I handed it over, causing her to fumble it so it fell into her horse's water.
Getting a smart-looking smartphone out of a bucket full of water* without missing a beat? Well, I won't say it never gets old, but it hasn't yet. Bonus marks for doing it mid call.
You don't think you need waterproofing until you have it - actual submersion is, of course, a rare occurrence but if you spend a lot of time outside in rainy old Blighty, it's really quite nice.
"This is easily used up with a few uploads to the cloud." -- Steve Davies 3
I was offered a "MASSIVE ONE GIGABYTE" by a Tesco rep the other day. When I replied that it would last me less than a week he laughed and said he didn't think I knew what exactly how big a gigabyte was. He was right, as it turns out --- when I pulled up my data usage graph I could see that 1GB wouldn't last me a single day.
I should be on commission - two other people in the vicinity immediately asked me which network I was on, I reckon two others were listening in keenly when I told them.
Now, not everyone tethers 0.5GB a day, but nearly 5GB of what I've done in the last fortnight is Google+, i.e. photos and videos up and down to the cloud. But I've listened to nearly 500MB of internet radio in the last two weeks so I'm pretty sure that it's time to stop calling 1GB MASSIVE.
A phone like this, which does not take SD cards, almost always necessitates a huge/unlimited data bundle on a network that doesn't have shameful data provision. Will they tell you that in the shop when you purchase it?
"The wall clock should remain constant, and our routines should change. That would be more logical than trying to falsely adjust a 'constant'."
Do you mean the 'constant' time at which the sun sets?
If BST were abolished, I'm pretty sure my employer would agree to me working 08:00 to 16:30 in the summer. Would yours though? Would everybody else's?
I'm sticking to my guns --- and probably inviting repeats of my earlier downvotes --- I would rather have more daylight hours after work than before work. My ideal job is probably refuse collection: start early, several hours of physical labour, be out of work in time to collect the kids (now sadly grown up) from school.
Yes, almost everything can be done by artificial light, farming, commuting, working --- but some things are nicer in long evening daylight: sitting in the garden; walking in the countryside; messing around with horses, boats, model aircraft, etc. I do realise that some people would rather have daylight for a morning run than an evening one, but it's always going to be like that ...
... unless ... we have alternate months of BST and GMT during the summer. Any takers?
To be pedantic, even UTC has discontinuities; TAI should be used on devices that are not expected to handle leap seconds.
More on topic, though, how on earth did this get missed in testing? It has got to be pretty high up on the test strategy for a domestic appliance that uses time to schedule things, surely!
"When are we going to do away with BST, it's only a few jock farmers that want to keep it. Note to farmers, either get up an hour earlier or an hour later."
Actually, as someone who likes to spend some time outside when work finishes (17:30 all year round), I rather like it; I'm sure I can't be the only one?
"Microsoft Outlook was the culprit: the sender meant for the mail to go to someone else, but was undone by an unwanted autocomplete"
This should read:
"The sender was the culprit for not ensuring that the recipient field was correct. But fortunately, because only the recipient had the corresponding private key to the public key used for encrypting the material, they weren't able to read it."
There is absolutely *no* excuse for this. It's one thing if you're all at the same organisation and the worst that happens is, for instance, a UK-based worker like myself is sometimes asked to "pop in" to the Sydney office "tomorrow" to do something (my stock answer is that, as long as they clear the travel, I'm on my way, but it may actually be "the day after" when I get there).
Emailing sensitive unencrypted material to the wrong person is utterly unacceptable. In fact even emailing it to the right person is pretty much unacceptable, as there should be no expectation of the material remaining private unless it is properly encrypted. It's not even hard: if your recipient is cryptographically naive, send them an encrypted zip and phone them up with with password. If you can't do that, you are not the right person to be sending the email.
"... homosexuality (which they see as a choice) ..." -- Snake Plissken
I've always found this truly weird. I would no more consider having sex with a man than my gay brother would consider having sex with a woman. Surely anyone who thinks there's any kind of element of choice must be at least a little bit bicurious. Is that why they are so hate-filled, because they worry that they might carry this "predilection" within themselves?
"Well, some business may ask you what you're doing if you're using an unauthorized VPN from inside their networks.. and then show you the door." --LDS
Ok, I was being a little facetious but there are real world situations: for instance, my company, a big consultancy, does, for all its many faults, treat us like grown ups with regard to web access. Many of our clients, given the areas in which they work, have to have very restrictive whitelists. So, if you need to look something up in an ORACLE forum, for instance, and you're at client site as a guest on their network, you VPN into our corporate network (obviously whitelisted) from the client and bob's your uncle. It's all perfectly acceptable. And my strategy for accessing non-work-related websites is just as straightforward - I wait till I'm not at work :-)
Come on, it's acceptable to occasionally split infinitives.