* Posts by Herby

1930 posts • joined 14 Dec 2007

Cash'n'Carrion restocks atomic keyrings

Herby
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How??

Do I get one of these in the wonderful USA? Is there a local vendor?

Do you ship them to far away places incased in lead foil? Maybe you could put it in the middle of a nice solder roll (then again probably not due to silly RoHS regulations).

Total bummer!!

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Canadian bloke refuses to hand over phone password, gets cuffed

Herby
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Canada?? US?? UK??

Well we all know that the good old USA (or at least some of the people therein) think that Canada is a wholly owned subsidiary of the USA. Look we have this long "unguarded" border, we both use $$ as currency (which sometimes trades at parity), and we speak (almost) the same language.

The problem is that somehow the American Constitution doesn't seem to work in the "great white (hockey) north". Canada can enact lots of "tell me or jail" laws and they have to live with it. Then again, we have a big cheese who doesn't like it either, but that is a discussion for another (more political) web site.

As for the UK, it is a wonderful country Queen and all. After all they gave us Top Gear!

Long live countries that speak (some form of) English.

All of this reminds me of:

"If any member of your IMF gets caught or killed the secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions" and "This recording will self destruct in 10 seconds". Now where is that thermite mixture?

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'Hi, I'm from Microsoft and I am GOING TO KILL YOU'

Herby
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I recently got one of these..

A couple of times. The problem is that I can't understand them very well. I heard from a relative that they keep wanting to know your IP address, and I suggested they respond with 127.0.0.1 hoping that they will infect themselves. Of course I am running a Linux desktop, so I like to play along.

The bigger problem is when my wife answers the phone. She thinks they could be "real". Hopefully I have absolved her of this notion. She hung up on the last call per my suggestion.

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Snowden, NSA spying, hard drive malware ... what we need is a UN privacy watchdog!

Herby
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Has the UN got ANYTHING right?

I suspect that this will be a bunch of graft that will be extorted from "member states". They will select ones to head the organization in alphabetical order and call it good. One day a country like Iran will be in charge of freedoms and call for mass censorship as the new normal.

Sorry, no thanks.

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D-Link removes fingers from ears, preps mass router patch

Herby
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A suggestion for D-Link...

How about keeping ALL older routers with up to date software. Sure it could be difficult, but when you release things with different numbers many times each year, things add up. Of course an alternative would be to open up things after they are declared "end of life".

p.s. Sometimes you need to go to Russia to get updates (D-Link has an office there).

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NXP snaps up Freescale to form new chipzilla

Herby
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Can they bring back 68k's

It would be a nice gesture. If they did multi-core 68k processors we could get rid of the chips from the "other chipzilla".

Yeah, I know wishful thinking (*SIGH*).

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El Reg regains atomic keyring capability

Herby
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Cleanup??

Isn't obvious that to get rid of nuclear waste you use NukeAway. At least that is what is used in the land of Ork.

As for thermite, it is pretty difficult to get started. In my youth, I tried with magnesium ribbon and it failed miserably. Of course that did not deter me and my brother as we disassembled some firecrackers and used the KNO3+S+C mixture to get the thermite started. The next time I used road flare which did the starting job nicely. A few years later in the 10th grade (4th form) my chemistry teacher made a hole in the lab table with thermite results. It IS very hot!

Such fun!!

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Reckon YOU can write better headlines than us? Great – apply within

Herby
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Do you review...

...past comments posted here?

I'm "local" but that is a relative term. The commute to SF would be a big deal as I live a bit South (no, not that far South, just down the Peninsula).

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BOFH: The ONE-NINE uptime solution

Herby
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On "decommissioning"

Sometimes you need to be careful. There might be valuable data on them. Usually a proper BOFH scans for the emails to/from the boss's mistress for good value.

Of course when you attempt a recovery at a later date, you are always guessing "what was the password I used 5 years ago".

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Net neutrality victory: FCC approves 'open internet' rules in 3-2 vote

Herby
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Be careful for what you ask for...

...you may just get it.

After we read the multitude of pages and find out how a government agency has really stirred up a hornet's nest. This is a disaster, we just don't know it yet. Time will tell just how bad it really is. Unfortunately the rules are not "RFC's", but they should be.

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Assemblers were once people: My aunt did it for NASA

Herby
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The 60's and computers...

Wonderful days. My first programs were in Fortran on the IBM1620. Wonderful machine, IBMs first "personal" computer. Did assembly language on it as well, and eventually got paid for it.

Small note: Didn't the 704 have Fortran?

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FCC Republicans slam brakes on net neutrality, but this wagon ain't slowing

Herby
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When will they understand...

If it ain't broke, DON'T fix it!!

If some vendor does something with the traffic we customers get, I'm sure that there will be another vendor that won't do it. The internet has grown BECAUSE it hasn't been regulated. We have reasonable standards body (IETF) and contributions by even the "little people" if they have something to contribute. Even there is some lightheartedness (wait till April 1). Does anyone believe that if some UN organization was in charge of the internet we would have gotten this far? this soon? We would probably be stuck with X.25 at 56k bps circuit switched.

Let me repeat:

If it ain't broke, DON'T fix it

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Net neutrality in the US: Look out! It's Neut-gate! Or is that Net-ghazi?

Herby
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If it ain't broke...

Get the government involved to really make a mess of things.

From the looks of it, they will do a bang up job.

Oh, we will all pay for it it in the end!

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They've finally solved it: Schrödinger's cat is both ALIVE AND DEAD

Herby
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Modern equivalent...

Is a simple lottery ticket. You buy it for one buck/quid and that's its value. The "opening of the box" is when they draw the number and you find out if it is "dead" (valueless), or "alive" (worth something) for various values of "alive".

The best explanation was the episode of _The Big Bang Theory_ when Penny and Leonard have their first kiss.

Note: This show is not a comedy, it is a documentary. I have this on VERY good authority from my brother in law who works at JPL.

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$10,000 Ethernet cable promises BONKERS MP3 audio experience

Herby
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Note to self (and other commenters):

We are all in the wrong business. As the saying goes, find a need and fill it. There must be another thing that "improves" something in audio.

The sad thing is that they will probably play tunes with MP3 compression and not even notice the difference. Oh, the MP3 player will probably have a (noisy) vacuum tube (valve) in its pre-amp to add more "warmth".

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'Camera-shy' Raspberry Pi 2 suffers strange 'XENON DEATH FLASH' glitch

Herby
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Kinda old news...

I remember working on a project in the mid 80's. One of the guys wanted to take a picture of the PC board we had. At the time we had the EPROMS covered in a white paper sticker. A flash on the camera glitched it. We changed to silvered stickers and the problem went away.

Lesson learned. Semiconductors are light sensitive. Thankfully the effect is transient, and after a reset all was well with the world.

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The Interview? Kim Jong-Un, you really shouldn’t have bothered

Herby
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Barbara Streisand effect (in spades)

Whoever did the hack (the finger pointing hasn't ceased) and the subsequent demand for the film not to be released made up for the fact that it isn't that good of a film. We will never know how the film would have fared if there wasn't so much PR.

Just remember, there is a saying "There is no such thing as bad PR". Spin doctors have this down to a fine art.

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'If someone in Australia says lick my toad, it's not a euphemism'

Herby
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Marmite?

Please explain further. While I suspect it is something similar to Nutella, we here in the USA don't have much experience with it.

Me? I like peanut butter, Skippy chunk style if you ask.

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Industry research claims over half of internet users open to new domains

Herby
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As long as...

TheRegister.co.uk exists, I don't think I will worry too much. Of course, we could get something like the.register as a domain name, but I'm not holding out much hope.

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National Lottery sleeps through Sunday

Herby
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Lining up...

...to pay your "Stupidity Tax". Of course I do it as well here in sunny California. Thankfully my rate of payment for this silly tax amounts to around $50/year.

It has been said that the odds of winning are the same weather you play or not, and I have actually proven it to be true. I've picked up a bunch of winning tickets just lying around that others have passed over. The first was one left on a copier that got me 5 bucks.

Live and learn.

I also note that when Comdex was up and running in Lost Las Wages Vegas, the locals didn't like it too much as the geeks didn't gamble too much, knowning the odds.

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Man trousers $15,000 domain name for $10.99 amid registry cockup

Herby
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Good for him.

As the old adage goes: Find a need and fill it.

At least he is setting up the web site to be "useful". Of course, the others who buy $15k domains "on spec" are asking for trouble. What should happen is for the REAL speculators should get only pennies for their efforts.

Then some things lead to weirdness when "accountonline" is actually a well known bank. Go figure (I can't!).

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Polish chap builds computer into a mouse

Herby
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Re: What I'd like to see...

"Is a monitor with a fast serial port (i.e. based on RS-485) with a megabit per second or so which uses its OSD hardware to emulate a high resolution xterm with nice crispy sharp bitmap fonts."

Well, if you are doing a bit mapped display (or something similar), 1/3 megabit is about what a 640x480 display has in pixels. Given that, you would get a frame rate of around 3 per second. This assumes that there aren't any timing bits in the stream.

There used to be a market for "X-Terminals" that did all the X-server things and you hooked them up to bigger boxes to get graphics. They used a 10-Base-T ethernet to get things to go fast enough.

One megabit just isn't fast enough. Of course now you have USB speeds way up there in the GHz range.

The solution: a single 75 ohm coax standard for what the HDMI cable gives you. It would probably be in the GHz range anyway.

Now if they were REAL cool the MouseBox would have a small transmitter to send out an 8VSB signal on channel 3 (take your pick) and you would just "tune it in". An on screen keyboard (as needed) and the charging mat and you would be good to go!

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Buggy? Angry? LET IT ALL OUT says Linus Torvalds

Herby
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Used to be...

That software was just something used to sell the hardware. When people started trying to make $$$ on it they hid it from everyone. Personally I would like to see what is behind the curtain before I buy something.

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Microsoft turns the power of FINE PRINT onto enterprise licensing

Herby
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I always thought the license agreement was:

Question: How much is your budget?

Answer: The license will cost you 110% of that.

There is a BOFH story here somewhere!

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Lube company merger receiving second 'in-depth' probe

Herby
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Just so you know...

Here in the USA, KY is the state abbreviation for Kentucky. I'll leave out the comments about the kind of residents that live there.

This article brings out the best in commentards.

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Verizon wants to sell 'antiquated' copper assets, stick to wireless for voice

Herby
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"better"??

Well, for the revenue stream it is. Having a nice flat rate line with unlimited data (at the speed my DSL line provides) is VERY nice thank you.

Moving to wireless will probably take these data and voice limits away, and when I trip over a limit (wireless bandwidth, being a shared resource) it will cost me dearly. Yes, I do like to download those Linux install disks, and maybe go back a revision. Just one of them will chew up a bunch of data. Now add in the updates that I do on a regular basis (and Microsoft does on an irregular basis) and you run into data limits and the cash register (till) just keeps ringing up the big bucks.

No thanks.

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BOFH: A miracle on PFY Street

Herby
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The question abounds...

Gina??

Oh, that is why we need to escape early!

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BOFH: Capo di tutti capi, bah. I'm having CHICKEN JALFREZI

Herby
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Be careful...

For what you ask for, you may just get it.

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Devs: Barack Obama's gunning for your job!

Herby
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Typical...

He writes JavaScript. Maybe he will continue with Basic (on a CP/M machine probably).

Of course, it has no bugs either, just ask him!

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How HAPPY am I on a scale of 1 to 10? Where do I click PISSED OFF?

Herby
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It gets worse...

My recent experience was traveling though JFK airport. You see when you come in from overseas, you must pass US customs at the first point of entry. Fine enough. The problem is that after you do that, they consider you "unscreened" and to get on the plane to the other side of the country, you need to pass through theatre "security" again. Why why WHY can't they just have a "bypass" (you DID get screened before you got on the plane in Venice?) and go directly to the gate. Oh, it would be nice if they had a nice luggage conveyor to route the just passed customs luggage back onto the plane you will be taking soon.

Now I know why when you do a connection that involves customs, you need to provide HOURS of time. At least you can get a bite to eat while waiting at the gate to be loaded in the cattle car coach economy.

Yes, it is just theatre. I can hide my pocket screwdriver inside my eyeglass case, and carry on (yes, I do this quite frequently!).

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BOFH: Santa, bloody Santa

Herby
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You get...

Female, Consultant, AND Lawyer all in one. Is there anything else in this Gina package??

Got to get a handle on this one. Looks pretty complete to me, but I amy be missing something, who knows!

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BOFH: Everyone deserves a little DOWNTIME

Herby
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Question to pose...

How many unlisted numbers have modems that answer on the 10th ring?

Those that respond with the game of "Global Thermonuclear War" excepted.

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US taxmen won't say WHY they're probing Microsoft. So Redmond is suing the IRS

Herby
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I don't know...

Who to root for in this. On one hand our wonderful inefficient government needs all the help it can get, and it has picked a nice target. On the other hand having the gestapo IRS investigate you isn't a very kind thing.

P.S. Just followed one of the chocolate factory's self drivers. They need a light to indicate if it is actually in "self driving" mode so I can do things to make it change its mind.

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I need a password to BRAKE? What? No! STOP! Aaaargh!

Herby
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They ARE interesting...

Having been next to one of the Chocolate Factory's self driving beasts, it is interesting. They seem to know what IS going on, and DO stop at stoplights. They even make proper left turns. I haven't seen them on the freeway, but it would be interesting to have them drive from the bay area down to the LA area on I-5. I suspect that they wouldn't handle the traffic as well as I can at 70+ MPH (which is the speed that EVERYONE (including the trucks) drives on this two lane (each way) freeway has.

Do i get £100 for having a positive review?

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BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?

Herby
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Printers were much simplier when...

...they only printed formed characters that were on the type band/chain/drum spaced by the fixed print hammers. The only variable was the VFU tape that you had to use the magic punch (or wield an exacto knife) to make the proper holes. No drivers needed here, just a simple printer interface and printable characters sent to the printer (maybe an occasional control character).

Times were easier in those days.

Of course the solution to most printer problems is to use postscript.

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Herby
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Re: In the old days

Actually is was easier than that. On the IBM card read/punch the motor that drove the read mechanism had a "variable" pulley. The motor was mounted in slots. With a quick "adjustment" of the pulley and sliding the motor to compensate the speed could be changed from stock 250 cards/min to around 375 cards/min (the new pulley "upgrade" was for 500 cards/min). On the punch side you could also upgrade as well, but we decided against it since the punch had more wear items. Yes, I personally participated in this, so I know all about it.

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Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers

Herby
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All of this shows...

The general public is gullible (is it in the dictionary?) and ill informed as to any science. They were sold a bill of goods and like the politicians which seem to want to control us at every turn lapped it up. We here in the USA got sold a back room deal a couple of years ago that will never work as designed. Sounds typical given recent events.

The only way to be "green" is to reduce the world's population to about 1000AD levels. It was colder then as well.

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Target, Home Depot and UPS attacks: Dude, you need to rethink point-of-sale security

Herby
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Of course it might be easier if...

They didn't use a version of Windoze as the base of the system. While this isn't in all systems, I suspect that there is an influence in many. Then they connect to the general internet and things go crazy. It seems to me that having a firewall (or similar) that detects connections to wrong places (I suspect a short whitelist would work) might stop things dead in their tracks.

Of course many of the PoS vendors probably didn't think about security to begin with, but I'll leave comments about that to someone else.

For the paranoid: Cash leaves no trail!

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BOFH: SOOO... You want to sell us some antivirus software?

Herby
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Simple comment...

SPAM and Virii exist because THEY WORK. Most of the attack vectors are in email (click here to win $$$) and these function because idiots will click them. Yes, to those who know better they are a scam, but for some percentage (probably the left over of 1.03%, 100% - 98.97%) they get through. With the small cost (if any) of email, this is acceptable to the scammers.

Moral: Don't click on email attachments unless you are VERY SURE of the source, and are expecting the attachment. Gotta be careful!

Of course it would be easier if operating system companies didn't do most of the work for the virus makers by "helping".

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Poll: Yes, yes, texting while driving is bad but *ping* OH! Hey, GRAB THE WHEEL, will ya?

Herby
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This is the same reason..

That my wife gets anxious if (for any reason) the state of charge is anything less than 100%. Thankfully she doesn't text while driving.

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Apple strap-on wristjob: You WON'T be able to spend more than $5,000!

Herby
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Look, for a watch anything over about $20-$30 is generally jewelry anyway. It used to be that you had to pay big bux for an accurate watch, whereas nowdays accuracy can be had on the cheap.

That being said, some people NEED status and order up silly things like Rolex devices, and of course they remain hidden under sleeves only to appear when the time is right to show "status". The same will be said for the Cupertino Wristslabs, just something to show status.

Me? I have a 15 year old Seiko thing with a simple twist-o-flex band. I've replaced the battery many times.

Yes, I also have a fit bit thingy that my (is there a message here?) wife gave me for my last birthday. Probably all I really need.

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Microsoft jolts awake, remembers it still makes Office for Mac

Herby
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In other news...

LibreOffice continues to improve day by day, and is compatible for most (if not all) documents. Download a copy TODAY, no license key necessary.

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An 'embed' link isn't a new infringement, says EU Court of Justice

Herby
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Could have easily pointed to...

...a library book by its ISBN. Same thing.

If you don't want linking, don't publish (to YouTube or anywhere else). Of course we do this all the time in bibliographic references, and nobody complains. With the web, it is just a bit more immediate.

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Trips to Mars may be OFF: The SUN has changed in a way we've NEVER SEEN

Herby
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Propulsion??

Well, just mine some dilithium crystals, and go from there. Jeez, this is simple solution.

Scotty, how is the warp drive coming long??

I'm giving it all I've got Capt'n she doesn't have any more.

For the humor impaired: This IS humor.

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Was Nokia's Elop history's worst CEO?

Herby
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Most cell phone providers missed the boat...

In he year or so before, there was a quantum shift in the "customer" of phones. Before it was the phone companies that specified the "features" and dictated what was delivered. In this market, Nokia thrived. They developed and made just what the phone companies wanted. Something that talked and did a few "features" that they specified (messaging). Then along comes the fruity company and it makes a phone for the end consumer. Now the phone companies don't dictate "features", the end consumers (you and me) dictate. Lots of companies didn't see this shift, and ignored it at their peril. Nokia was but one. To further shift things, along comes Android to push things further. The shift to WP by Nokia was the realization that they didn't see it coming, and were trying to catch up.

Sorry Nokia, too little too late. One may argue that WP was a good/bad idea, and that is the continuing topic, but something needed to shift and Nokia shifted WAY too late.

As for Microsoft and Windows Phone, one should heed the words of Jack Welch: "First (Android), Second (iPhone), or get out of the way (Microsoft!)". Microsoft isn't used to NOT being in a dominate place, and they do quite a bit of fumbling which doesn't help themselves. They think they can unite the platforms to squeeze out #1 and #2, but it isn't working out.

Wait till Google gets ahold of desktops and tries to unite with its phones. That might even be interesting. I might even shed a tear (or not as the case may be).

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Revealed: Malware that forces weak ATMs to spit out 'ALL THE CASH'

Herby
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Maybe the entire ATM universe needs a refit!

Sounds to me like a Raspberry Pi can probably do the trick. Night need a USB hub to connect the cash dispenser touchscreen, and keypad. After that, a nice version of software would work nicely. Then add tamper switches that require a proper USB key to confirm proper access. If not inserted in a certain time things might not work correctly until things are more validated.

The software CAN'T be that hard. If they make it open source, it might be peer reviewed and be even better.

Like "military intelligence", "windows embedded" is a true oxymoron!

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Strange tale of an angry bean counter, Comcast and a shock 'firing'

Herby
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Just for the record...

While Comcast does provide telco services (through broadband with VoIP), it is primarily a Cable TV company. Yes, it delivers lots of services, and even owns a TV Network (NBC), but the connection is almost always a piece of RG-6 (quad shielded we hope) with an F connector at the end. Just like all TVs have now on their back panel.

Of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of service given over the phone, but Comcast still isn't a telco (much as they might want to be...NOT).

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Meg Whitman: The lady IS for TURNING. HP to lob printers'n'PCs OVERBOARD

Herby
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It's not Hewlett Packard anymore....

It is now lots of things:

HP printers & lappys.

HP big iron

Agilent

Keysight

Compaq

This list goes on, but it isn't Hewlett Packard any more, just HP and the minions.

Apologies to Bill and Dave, may they rest in peace.

Oh, and layoffs ("Workforce Reductions") keep on coming. Been there, done that.

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

Herby
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As the saying goes...

If you don't like an open source program, feel free to make your own.

From the looks of it, some people have and those that complain gripe about it. So, if you don't like systemd, or pulseaudio, feel free to make up your own substitute.

Life goes on.

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Windows 10: One for the suits, right Microsoft? Or so one THOUGHT

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Re: The numbering makes sense now...

No, what the "10" refers to is the year, like Windows 95. This indicates that whatever is released was supposed to be released in 2010, and probably would have made sense then.

Of course the alternate explanation is that someone got a finger cut off and they count in base 9.

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