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* Posts by Vic

3313 posts • joined 7 Dec 2007

UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan

Vic
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Re: Such hatred

The nice thing is with init.d/* is that you could swap the shell scripts for something else if you really hate them, binaries, makefiles, or even roll your own special init.d shell if that is too easy.

And when you're really screwed - you can instrument them to see what's going on...

Vic.

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Re: the "fun" part about systemd

I have come to the conclusion that suspending works reliably only in systems where the computer and OS have been designed together with power management in mind, as is the case with smartphones and pads.

The laptop I'm typing this on is a Packard-Bell TJ45[1]. It is the current in a long line of laptops I've had that suspend & hibernate just fine...

Vic.

[1] My next-door neighbours threw it out when it had become too broken for their use. I've been using it happily[2] for a couple of years now.

[2] Well, as happily as you can use such a pile of crap...

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Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores

Vic
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Re: Bose noise-cancelling headphones.

Bose produced respected, if high-end, audio equipment

Bose produced expensive kit. Respected it was not...

I looked on in horror when I first pulled the front off an 802. Their "full-range" claims were audibly bollocks, but I really could not bring myself to believe that any company could make "fidelity" claims from that heap of crap...

Vic.

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Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody

Vic
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Re: Picard?

Picard? I must have missed those episodes.

I cna only think of one such episode[1], and that was the whole crew losing it, not Picard being off-colour...

Vic.

[1] Yes, I did have to look it up :-)

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MasterCard adds fingerprint scanner to credit cards for spending sans the PIN

Vic
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Re: relative difficulty

EMV cards are quite good at preventing the leak of data stored in the chip (otherwise it would be easy to clone, and we don't hear much about that).

Maybe we don't hear much, but we do hear something

Vic.

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America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft

Vic
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It could take out enemy satellites without blowing them up, by painting their solar panels

That kinda presupposes the existence of a paint you could use at that temperatire and pressure...

Vic.

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SCREW YOU, EU: BBC rolls out Right To Remember as Google deletes links

Vic
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Re: Brilliant!

Google's indexing robot comes steaming into your website without so much as a please or thank you

Google makes requests to your published interface, and it's up to you whether or not to respond.

Additionally, it has already requested the robots.txt file, which is the more usual way to tel spiders to bog off if you don't want them indexing your site...

Vic.

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Apple's new iPADS have begun the WAR that will OVERTURN the NETWORK WORLD

Vic
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Re: What Apple doesn't say

You're certainly stuck with it for between 12 and 24 months

No you're not. You can change the SIM at pretty much any time, as long as the phone accepts the new one.

What you're stuck with is the *contract* - and moving to a soft-SIM doesn't change that one bit.

Vic.

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Torvalds CONFESSES: 'I'm pretty good at alienating devs'

Vic
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Re: Eric Raymond's (in)famous quote

But you didn't, you called his idea stupid, which isn't the same thing.

You'd be amazed at how many people can't see that distinction...

Vic.

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Solaris fix-it firm offers free BASH patch for legacy Oracle kit

Vic
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you can't access the site for the purpose of giving your customers something they aren't entitled to themselves:

However, in the case of GPL code, those customers *are* entitled[1] to the updates, and it would void Oracle's right to distribute the software if they try to prevent anyone from getting them...

Vic.

[1] I'm ignoring the possibility of a Section 3(a) distribution, because I'm pretty sure Oracle doesn't do that. Not every single time, at least...

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Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar

Vic
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Re: Cut'n'paste

Nope. Heart rate detection works on delta detection of the red channel, no need for *infra* red

It's also notoriously sensitive to things like skin temperature (i.e. blood perfusion). So you won't get into the phone at all if you're out in the cold. And $deity only knows what it will do with someone who's a bit flushed after running for the bus...

newer iPhones have IR filtered out as it apparently can mess up pictures.

ISTR a bit of a scandal a few years back, where camcorders were showing people in their underwear on account of being overly-sensitive to IR. AIUI, that has led to IR filters being fitted on most cameras these days.

Vic.

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Greedy datagrabs, crap security will KILL the Internet of Thingies

Vic
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Re: Sorry, no.

And my fridge would then interface with that app to answer the much more limited question, "How much beer, and of what type(s), is in it right now? Assuming the bottles all contain what they say they do."

So - that would be the fridge not dealing with multiple users, then?

That's where we came in...

Vic.

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Given that our governments seem to think that combating copyright violations is second only to combating 'terrorism'

Second?

I think you misjudge the situation, sir...

Vic.

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Re: Sorry, no.

Hardware markers don't get software.

Most do.

The PHBs that run the department, however, ...

Vic.

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Re: Sorry, no.

Why wouldn't the fridge be able to cope with multiple users?

I take three beers out of the fridge.

How does it know I'm not going to drink all three? All it knows is that three beers are gone; there is no understanding of the purpose[1] of them going.

Vic.

[1] I might be having a binge. I might have friends over. I might have only been storing these beers whilst my neighbour's fridge was broken. I might have decided that this beer is awful and I want to throw it away. There are many ways in which data without a realistic model is simply misleading...

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Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First

Vic
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Re: rant-like journalism

ADHD isn't something that you "might have, but we can't prove". We absolutely can prove whether or not you have it.

Yeah, maybe.

My missus was a teacher in an inner-city school until she retired. A significant proportion of her pupils were diagnoses ADHD.

From this, we can determine at least one of two things :-

- ADHD is a normal part of the human condition

- ADHD is dramatically over-diagnosed.

We should probably ignore the first of these, as it boils down to "ignore it - it doesn't matter". But the latter means either that ADHD isn't easy to diagnose, or that doctors are negligently dismissive about the condition.

I'm hoping that it's not that easy to diagnose...

Vic.

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Radiohead(ache): BBC wants dead duck tech in sexy new mobes

Vic
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on a wired LAN usually a multicast is still broadcast over the LAN

That depends on your switch; many modern switches run IGMP snooping, meaning that the switch itself joins the upstream multicast, and transmits it to those downstream ports that have attempted to join.

Vic.

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Vic
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Re: Follow the money

Digital broadcasting, on the other hand, requires access to proprietary technology. And while the receiving chips may be given away to encourage manufacturers to make (a\nd, therefore, consumers to buy) receivers, you can bet your arse that Fred in the Shed won't be allowed anywhere near the parts required to build a transmitter.

Opendigitalradio seems to have most of the info you'd need...

Vic.

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Re: Broadcast vs. Mobile network.

IP multicast doesn't work in the real life

It could do. But the reach of multicast is actually reducing - e.g. the shutdown of MBone.

And all we're doing about it is to snaffle bandwidth (from TV and radio services) to enable yet more unicast traffic.

Multicast won't work over the open Internet again - not for techincal reasons, but for marketing ones.

Vic.

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Vic
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I pay £15 a month for unlimited data

How do you rate the chances of that tarriff staying the same if people start using it to stream radio?

Vic.

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Ada Lovelace Day: Meet the 6 women who gave you the 'computer'

Vic
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Re: Gender parity == hogwash.

An equal opportunity hire, IMO, is an Orwellian term for "incompetent, but we hired her because it looks nice"

I once worked with a girl who had been hired to increase the number of women in the team - and she had been told so.

It left her completely undermined - if ever she tried to advance a point, she was largely ignored, on account of it being common knowledge that she was only there to make up the numbers. And that was dreadful - she was actually a pretty good engineer, and her ideas were often bang on the money.

But her career was blighted by people who thought they needed to fudge the numbers[1].

vic.

[1] Strictly speaking, it is the knowledge of the reason, rather than the reason itself. But these things leak out...

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Something ate Google's 8.8.8.8 at about eight in Asia's evening

Vic
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Re: Rose tinting?

I think you may also be missing another reason Google provides them: it gives them another big juicy titty of free data on which to slurp and gorge themselves.

Not during a DNS amplification attack[1], it doesn't; the whole point of that is that the addresses are forged...

Vic.

[1] There's quite a bit of that going on at the moment - my server was attacked just the other day. It wouldn't surprise me in the slightest to find out that this is what took Google's DNS server down.

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

Vic
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Re: prior art?

I have an eVic

Should I be concerned?

Vic.

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I've got a new Linux box, how does it work... WOAH, only asking :-/

Vic
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Re: It's gotten better.

Eventually I got a Linux-owning friend to explain to me that you fix problems like this by logging in from a remote computer, su root and issuing the command e3fsck -f -b 8193 /dev/hda1. How's that for intuitive?

Just because you got some advice that, at best, is only appropriate for a paricularly unlikely type of breakage, and at worst, is plain wrong, that doesn't mean the whole community is at fault...

Vic.

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Was Nokia's Elop history's worst CEO?

Vic
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If Nokia wanted to make phones they wouldn't have sold the phone business

AIUI, "Jolla" means "lifeboat"...

Vic.

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Antarctic ice at ALL TIME RECORD HIGH: We have more to learn, says boffin

Vic
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Re: What's the problem with this?

I've tried making fancy layered drinks a few times. They're darned hard to make without a heck of a lot of practice. And their viscosities are a heck of a lot different than sea water and fresh water.

Whatever else might be said here, the existence of haloclines is not in doubt. They exist - I've swum through them (which was decidedly odd).

Vic.

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Linux systemd dev says open source is 'SICK', kernel community 'awful'

Vic
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Re: @Vic Olivetti and Time Travel

OP was referring to Poettering

My aplogies - I got the wrong end of the stick.

Vic.

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Vic
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Re: Olivetti and Time Travel

No, unless something has changed recently, he's paid by Red Hat.

I don't think he's ever been on Red Hat's payroll.

He made a load of money by selling the RH shares he was given.

Vic.

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Vic
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try telling me with a straight face you have never met any of those people who figured out long ago that getting anything done is much easier by straight-up asking others to do it for them than expending any effort of their own...

The Help Vampires

Vic.

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Chatting to Al Qaeda? Try not to do that – Ex spy chief defends post-Snowden NSA

Vic
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Re: Just Don't

BE PURE, BE VIGILANT, BEHAVE.

2 downvotes?

I guess not everyone read 2000AD...

Vic.

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Re-light my diode: Trio of boffins scoop physics Nobel for BLUE LEDs

Vic
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Re: Curious

the physics of LEDs is well known already

Really?

So why had no-one produced a blue one beforehand, then? There's very clearly a market for them...

Vic.

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Vic
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Re: Curious

white LEDs, which are essentially filtered blue LEDs

Well, they're not going to be *filtered* blue LEDs, as the white-spectrum requirement just isn't there.

According to the interview[1] on the news this morning, white LEDs are actually a blue LED inside a white phosphor. I suspect, therefore, that other colours of LEDs could also be used to make white LEDs, albeit not necessarily with the same efficiency.

Vic.

[1] The interview was on the BBC, and it was with one of the Japanese guys who won the prize, so I reckon he was probably telling the truth.

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Vic
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Re: Curious

imagine the Shard lit by gas.

Tempting ... tempting ...

Vic.

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What's happened since Beijing's hacker unit was exposed? Nothing

Vic
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Re: This is different how?

So instead, they go to their ally country 'C' and ask them to break into those servers in country 'B' for them.

If any of us did that, it would be the basis for a "conspiracy" charge...

Vic.

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Adobe spies on reading habits over unencrypted web because your 'privacy is important'

Vic
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Re: DRM-Free Library

Books in my house are analog-only!

Books on my devices have been through Calibre...

Vic.

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Vic
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Re: Maybe incorrect assumption on my part..

to randomly send millions of books read

Hush now. There's noi need for that sort of thing.

I intend to tell them all about my recent history of reading the book "Adobe are a bunch of fuckwits" many hundreds of times. And I turn the pages a lot...

Vic.

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Britain’s snooping powers are 'too weak', says NCA chief

Vic
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Re: Public confidence?

Time off from GCHQ to troll El-Reg ?

They've been recruiting lately. Probably for this.

Vic.

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we should create a defense of necessity to protect life or national security

Nope. We should create a responsibility to handle these issues appropriately.

The ancient Romans had the right idea - in the event of a crisis, they would choose a Dictator. This Dictator had absolute power - including life and death.

The Dictatorship would last for six months, at which time the (now former) Dictator would be taken away and tried for all his actions during his period in power. Bad Things(tm) would happen to those who treated their position without sufficient gravitas...

I'm not sure how you'd adapt this to the current power grab; something along the lines of allowing the Police to do their snoopong, but whenever that snooping does not produce the evidence they declared it would, then the entire file is passed unredacted to the subject of that snooping with no secrecy requirements. A "do as you would be done by" situation.

It needs work, but I'm sure you get my drift.

VIc.

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Re: Truth hurts

Well, if you'd accessed and used the data in an appropriate and proportionate way in the first place, then no rogue sysadmin's (or anyone else's) revelations could have damaged public confidence in your ability.

He's wrong, too - no-one has any doubt about their ability to use data in an appropriate and proprtionate way.

Their desire to do so, however, ...

Vic.

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Microsoft WINDOWS 10: Seven ATE Nine. Or Eight did really

Vic
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Re: It worked for Red Dwarf

They didn't make a series 9 and the result was series 10 was better than series 8.

They didn't make any series between 6 and 10. Nope, not a one.

Vic.

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Will we ever can the spam monster?

Vic
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Re: Possible Solution

each of the member email service providers charge some very minor fee per email sent

Micropayments have no effect on spam.

Think of it like this: there are three ways to set up this payment system :-

- prepayment

- payment at the time

- paying after the mails hae been sent.

The second of these can be trivially ignored - if you have to get out your credit card for evey email you send, email ceases to be any use at all. The card charges alone would make this unworkable.

So we're left with two methods which involve the computer having credit to send email - possibly limited, possibly not. Doesn't make any difference.

If your computer has that credit, the spamming malware will steal that credit. So the spam flows anyway. Additionally, you can't send any email when you want to, because there is no credit.

Micropayments don't help.

Vic.

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Vic
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I didn't really like the idea of paying for emails, but if they were 0.001c

...You'd get just as much spam as you do now.

Micropayments don't work. Spammers steal bandwidth - if you insist on payment to send email, they'll just steal that as well.

Vic.

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There's a generator here:

http://www.spfwizard.net/

Sadly, if you follow its recommended selections, you get the usual "a mx ptr" bollocks that so many domains (ab)use.

At least it doesn't give you the "+all" default[1] that I see so often at the moment.

Vic.

[1] If I ever find out who is advising that, there will be much regeneration...

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Vic
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Re: Block port 25 by default

p.s. also make all HTML email completely illegal

My mail client is set to display text email by default (with an option to display as HTML if I explicitly choose to do so). It makes spotting anything that does get through my filters *painfully* easy.

I'm not sure this would persist if text-mode were the norm...

Vic.

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Hiss-hiss! GIGANTIC SOLAR FILAMENT snakes around Sun

Vic
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Re: Filament?

The sun is just falling apart to form two separate stars

Nah. It's hatching to release a space dragon or something.

A new one of the same size will be shat out before anyone misses it...

Vic.

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Doctor Who becomes an illogical, unscientific, silly soap opera in Kill The Moon

Vic
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Re: Bend the rules, don't break them

if a seed - very small - was planted eons ago and then triggered to "sprout" so to speak the resulting mass might appear to come from nothing

Cresating new mass of any appreciable quantity requires a metric fuckton of energy. See the calculation earlier in the thread.

But if this were some sort of "seed" growing in the way we've seen seeds grow before, then there is no increase in mass whatsoever - the mass is transformed in state, not in quantity.

Vic.

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Re: One of the points

Talk about sawing your leg off at the knee to solve an ingrowing toenail.

ITYM "Talk about sawing your leg off at the knee to cure a toothache". The major desireable feature of any solution is that it be effective...

Vic.

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Vic
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Re: The worst thing

"Is the Moon the Creation of Alien Intelligence?"

Such questions always remind me of the Not The Nine O'Clock News book. On the front cover was the tabloid-esque box containing the question "The Shah - Is He Really Dead? Turn to p.42"[1].

On page 42 was the answer "yes" :-)

Vic.

[1] For our Younger Viewers, the Shah was a guy who is now dead.

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Vic
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Re: Regenerating The Doctor

Maybe the Beeb could try to get the likes of Peter Hamilton or Alastair Reynolds to write a series

I'd rather see Andy Hamilton have a bash...

Vic.

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Re: What's happened?

I can't decide if it's crap scripts, or Capaldi's portrayal of the Doctor

It's the scripts.

Peter Capaldi is a superb actor. The writers are trying to use his demeanour to create an edgier, more combative Doctor.

But what they've actually written is a grumpy, bitter old man. His actions are contrary to everything that has gone before. This isn't something that Capaldi can act around - this is the story line they're writing for him.

IMO, that's why it's not working - the writers have turned him into an old curmudgeon, rather than the (somewhat shabby) guardian of all timespace.

Vic.

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