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* Posts by Christoph

1648 posts • joined 24 Dec 2007

Beancounters tell NASA it's too poor to fly planned mega-rocket

Christoph
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Re: Solid boosters?

Probably called a "half-circular excursion arc"?

Followed by "Lithobraking"

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Christoph
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Solid boosters?

Using solid rocket boosters on the Shuttle was a really bad compromise to save money. And now they are going to do it again - to save money. One of the reasons the private companies can do better is that they don't have a huge legacy of obsolete hardware that they have to re-use.

Solid rockets on a man-rated vehicle is a terrible idea. Once they are lit there is no way to control or abort them, they will keep going until they burn out.

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Australia floats website blocks and ISP liability to stop copyright thieves

Christoph
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"expand liability beyond carriers to ensure that entities like Universities and even search engines can be held liable for users' activities."

So why are they stopping there?

What about the teachers and parents who didn't teach those users to avoid infringing copyright? Surely they can be sued?

What about the electricity companies that supply the energy to run their computers? They are obviously guilty.

The supermarkets that keep them fed while they infringe copyright?

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Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov

Christoph
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Holmes

I don't see the problem

Copyright law is perfectly simple and straightforward.

Rule 1: If you are rich you can sue poor people who copy your intellectual property for ludicrously large amounts, and bankrupt them with lawyers' fees.

Rule 2: If you are poor, rich people can rip off your intellectual property at whim without asking you or telling you, and definitely without paying you.

Rule 3: There is no Rule 3.

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Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app

Christoph
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Re: Most Recent?

Yes. "You aren't using Social Fixer."

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Fear a terrifying killer robot revolution? GET A GRIP: Boffins invent cyborg hand for humans

Christoph
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Seven fingers?

There's an Inigo Montoya here to see you.

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Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists

Christoph
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So nice to hear the USA roundly condemning people who shoot down unarmed civilian airliners.

Would have been even nicer if they'd done the same for Iran Air Flight 655 - or even admitted liability.

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Cops nab suspect using CREEPY facial recog system

Christoph
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I can see a major problem with claiming that an identity parade provides evidence.

They get a photo of someone committing a crime. They plug that into an enormous database of pictures. They come up with someone who by pure chance looks very similar to the criminal.

Then they put that person on an identity parade and ask "Is there anyone here who looks like the criminal?"

Well yes, of course there is! That's why the computer picked them out!

Given a big enough database there is very often going to be somebody somewhere who is a very close match. An identity parade should not be considered to be additional evidence.

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Listen: WORST EVER customer service call – Comcast is 'very embarrassed'

Christoph
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Re: A note for the blokes here

Asking you to think about what happens, about what those women feel like when subjected to that behaviour, is a slur?

Only a few men do that, but a hell of a lot ignore it when they see it happen, or laugh about it.

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Christoph
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A note for the blokes here

A note for the (mostly) male audience on El Reg:

Now you know how a woman feels when trying to tell a persistent idiot that No means No.

And no, she isn't going to explain her reasons so that he can argue about them with her.

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Christoph
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Use a small ISP

If you have the option (which I gather the USA hasn't?) use one of the many small ISPs.

They are helpful, knowledgeable and responsive.

When I've emailed my ISP (Merula) with problems, I've had helpful, responsive, friendly emails, often from the company boss (he sometimes emails after midnight!). When I emailed to cancel one service they simply went ahead and did it. No quibble whatever.

Same with my web provider (ICUK). They respond to problems. They fix them. They are helpful and friendly.

There's lots of other small providers. Use them! Or see them taken over by the big boys and reduced to the same "service" level.

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Voteware source code review 'could lead to hacking'

Christoph
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Same as in the USA - they refuse to release the source code for voting machines.

Meanwhile in Las Vegas if you want to run an electronic fruit machine you MUST make the source code available.

So it's perfectly OK to fiddle elections, but no way do they let you fiddle money.

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LOHAN seeks stirring motto for spaceplane mission patch

Christoph
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Ad eundum quo nemo ante iit (To boldly go)

But after all that work, it might turn out to be:

Parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus

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Read the proposed US ASTEROIDS Act to green-light mining IN SPAAAACE

Christoph
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"The mined materials would then be considered private property under US laws"

And exactly how do US laws apply in space?

Especially when they are so emphatic that US laws do NOT apply outside the US in places such as Guantanamo Bay.

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Dead letter office: ancient smallpox sample turns up in old US lab

Christoph
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The original White Horse (which Arthur called the White Hart) is long gone, but the SF meetings that were held there are still happening.

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Christoph
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I wonder what actually happened when someone opened the box and saw that label?

Presumably they put the box back down very carefully, and then screamed and ran like hell!

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What's that burning tire smell? It's Microsoft screeching away from the No-IP car crash

Christoph
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Re: WtF

I wonder what Microsoft will be doing with all the log files that track the activities of innocent third parties trying (and failing) to look up legitimate domains?

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That 'wiped' Android phone you bought is stuffed with NAKED SELFIES – possibly

Christoph
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Holmes

Re: Phones

"We do repairs on a large number of phones running all the phone systems, iOS, Android, Windows and Blackberry, almost all have pictures on, I don't think we have found quite the ratio as these researchers though."

Which directly implies that you search for and examine the photos on any phones which you repair?

It is of course well known that this happens. What's not so well known is how often other information gets copied off.

So best to wipe the phone before you get it repaired.

Oh, the fault that needs repairing prevents you from wiping the phone? Looks like you have problems.

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Printed diode can slurp power from phone signals

Christoph
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Clothing labels

Is this just for stock control up to point-of-sale, or do they expect to use them for smart wardrobes and washing machines?

Because it's likely to last about as long as the ink on those washing instruction labels - about 3 washes.

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Revealed: SECRET DNA TEST SCANDAL at UN IP agency

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Universal Discredit: Gov admits Treasury HASN'T signed off biz case

Christoph
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We asked IDS what would happen to all the people left starving and destitute by his department's incompetence.

We'll get back to you with his answer once he's stopped laughing long enough to give it.

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Report: UK.gov wants to legislate on comms data BEFORE next election

Christoph
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We are a democracy

We have the free right to choose how we are governed!

We can choose between a party that is gong to bring in draconian laws, a party that is gong to bring in draconian laws, or a party that has no hope of getting in but will bring in those draconian laws anyway if they do.

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Boeing to start work on most powerful rocket ... EVER!

Christoph
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Re: Scary stuff...

" why didn't they go with the F1? That thing worked"

"the $US2.8 billion contract"

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USA to insist on pre-flight mobe power probe

Christoph
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Re: The queues will get horrendous

You've already got problems if you carry laptops or portable HDDs to the states. Not only will all your data get copied off, they may add spyware.

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Google BLOCKS access to Goldman client-leak email

Christoph
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Well done Google. Even when everyone agrees it needs to be done, they still make sure all the legal requirements are in place before releasing information on an innocent third party.

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NASA: Satellite which will END man-made CO2 debate in orbit at last

Christoph
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"some answers on if and how we can do something about climate change."

If the denialists manage to stall everything for only a few more years, the answer will be:

Location: Up shit creek

Paddle status: False

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Christoph
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Re: On the gripping hand..

We are pumping CO2 into the atmosphere. In huge amounts. This is not something that's in doubt, we are burning stuff and producing CO2.

So for these changes to be NOT man made, that CO2 would have to be disappearing somewhere without trace, and some other CO2 would have to be appearing from some unknown source in similar amounts, and have only started appearing in the last few years rather than the billions of years Earth has been around.

Yes, it appears that nobody (other than yourself) is considering that possible case.

Odd, that.

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MIT and CERN's secure webmail plan stumped by PayPal freeze

Christoph
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When we pressed the PayPal representative on the phone for further details, he "

said "Ouch! Err ... we .. . ouch! ... can't, um, comment on ... ouch! ... any of that"

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Drone-assisted Swiss construct virtual 3D castle

Christoph
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Switzerland’s most visited historic monument

Not any more? Will people not bother to visit when they can tour it remotely?

Or possibly visitor numbers might increase, to view the real thing after doing a remote tour?

I hope someone will be doing a detailed look at the numbers to check what actually happens.

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It's a Doddle: Amazon inks train station parcel deal with Network Rail

Christoph
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Deliver to no-longer-manned suburban tube station.

Pick up from locker late night when getting home from the pub.

Head out half-drunk, in dark, from known collection point with expensive gadget under arm.

What could possibly go wrong?

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US spanks phone-jamming vendor with $34.9 MEEELLION fine

Christoph
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Re: What we need

Unfortunately it's not just 'official' emergency calls that people might need to make or receive.

There's plenty of things that are emergencies for individuals but are nothing to do with the official emergency services.

Just as an example, would you want to stop someone receiving the message "We have found a compatible donor. Come in for surgery NOW" ?

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DON'T PANIC: Facebook returns after 30-minute outage terror

Christoph
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"in living memory" means within the memory of the oldest people still alive.

So for Facebook to have had an earlier outage, it would have to have happened while Victoria was still on the throne.

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Microsoft eggheads publish JavaScript crypto code for devs

Christoph
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Black Helicopters

"and MS notes that this library will probably be replaced in future versions."

Obvious problem there - even if they don't quietly slip the NSA back-doored version in later, who is going to believe them that they won't? (Or won't have their arms twisted to do so.)

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Tor is '90 per cent of the net' claims City of London Police Commish – and he's dead wrong

Christoph
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It's just that he's so used to that kind of percentage, since 90% of the City of London police are crooks.

(Which is an absolutely true number that I've just made up.)

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Christoph
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Re: Maybe...

But some of their connections, publicly and openly acknowledged, are those nice respectable Scientologists ... oh, hang on a minute ...

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DANGER MOUSE is back ... and he isn't half a GLASSHOLE

Christoph
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Joke

"knee-trembling threats"

Is a knee-trembler really suitable for children's television?

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Splash! Three times as much water as ALL of Earth's oceans found TRAPPED underground

Christoph
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Re: Equilibrium?

It's pretty well got to be in balance. It's had several billion years to do so, without either flooding or draining the surface.

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London commuter hell will soon include 'one card to rule them all'

Christoph
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It's a gigantic government IT project - what could possibly go wrong?

One obvious problem for a start. Once this is brought in all other methods of payment will be removed. The same way they are stopping cash payments for London buses. So if your card is lost or stolen, you won't be able to use any form of public transport. If you are stuck somewhere late on a Saturday night, you are stuck. Sorry young woman who's just been robbed, you're going to have to walk home and hope you don't get raped too many times on the way.

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CIA rendition jet was waiting in Europe to SNATCH SNOWDEN

Christoph
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Re: TheOtherHobbes

"The result is a free hand for ISIS and other extremist groups the US successfully pushed put of Iraq as part of the co-operative work done with local Sunnis in the Anbar Awakening."

With a bit of help from the Saudis, and a lot of hypocrisy from the west, it's a right old tangle.

About the only people who don't get a say in what happens are, as usual, the ones actually living there (or trying to).

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Wedding tackle started out as PROTO-SHARKS' LEGS, boffins say

Christoph
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This story will run and run

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Feedly DDoSed by ransom-threat crims: 'We refused to give in'

Christoph
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"after refusing to pay criminals to stop the attack"

And that is called paying the Dane-geld;

But we've proved it again and again,

That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld

You never get rid of the Dane.

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Redmond is patching Windows 8 but NOT Windows 7, say security bods

Christoph
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Interesting. They announced the end of security patches for Windows XP with years of advance warning and fanfare, so they obviously thought it extremely important to warn users about it.

Which gives them a lot to explain if they've ended Windows 7 security support on the quiet a few days later.

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NSA: Inside the FIVE-EYED VAMPIRE SQUID of the INTERNET

Christoph
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Re: Lets not forget who is to blame

"in the real world these organisations daily stop us getting killed or injured by the forces out there."

And they stop us all getting killed by tigers. Have you seen any tigers roaming the streets of London? See? It works! They are protecting us!

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Queen's Speech: Computer Misuse Act to be amended, tougher sentences planned

Christoph
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Re: Shark Jumped!

Books of photographs by Lewis Carroll (which I saw openly for sale in a Fleet Street bookshop in the 80's)

The diaries of a notorious criminal who sold 9 year old girls as sex slaves while committing genocide as a side line. And perhaps they could also imprison anyone who celebrates him on Columbus Day?

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REVEALED: GCHQ's BEYOND TOP SECRET Middle Eastern INTERNET SPY BASE

Christoph
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Re: Official Secrets Act?

"We'll bake you a cake with a file in it."

GCHQ have already read the contents of that file.

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Christoph
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Re: Britain's got secrets

"At what level are things really kept secret"

That would be Strap 4, which covers codewords like CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN.

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Christoph
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Re: How security makes you safer and is a job for life

"2/ Conflate your government's interests with the national interest"

That's already official as a result of the Clive Ponting case. The "national interest" is the personal and political interest of whatever bunch of politicians is currently in power.

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TOADOCALYPSE NOW: Madagascar faces down amphibious assault

Christoph
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Re: Wrong amphibian, but close enough...

A really ribbiting story

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French Hacker Legion is West's foremost snoop squad says Robert Gates

Christoph
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“We nearly are alone in the world in not using our intelligence services for the competitive advantage of our businesses.”

Words fail me.

I mean really. I usually have a snarky comment to make about this sort of thing, but that claim is just beyond belief. You'd have to be a Fox News watcher to credit it for an instant.

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Snowden never blew a whistle, US spy boss claims

Christoph
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@Slawek

Who is kept "solitary confinement for decades for trivial reasons"?

These are the longest, but there are many many other examples. Mostly black of course. The reasons for doing this vary from petty to pretty well non-existent.

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