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* Posts by John Stirling

160 posts • joined 29 Mar 2007

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Beardie Branson backs Blockchain's Bitcoin bandwagon

John Stirling

Dish, a fad?

I always use Dish as the benchmark. When they first introduced PoS electronic payments I knew my Barclaycard was here to stay. Likewise when they started using the internet, that's when I gave in and got tubes connected to my house.

When Dish has flying cars I'll know the future has arrived. Until then it's a fad.

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Trolls have DARK TETRAD of personality defects, say trickcyclists

John Stirling

@Harry wertz 1

You seem to have missed criticising the religion/evolution argument and the star trek/wars dispute.

Good illustration of zanshin's point though

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ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION

John Stirling

Losses

The only people who lost will be those who sold while the price was depressed. Anyone who bought while cheap made money. Anyone who didn't trade while the price was adrift didn't make or lose anything regardles of their position.

If it was accepted that his motivation was not market manipulation then really this was not the right conviction. Libel perhaps, but not market manipulation. It is a dangerous precedent since it could be uaed to prosecute protesters who successfully impact a corporation through their legitimate protests.

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German server lockbox scores MEELLION dollar seed-smashing record

John Stirling

Re: 100 millibits/sec?

I've seen a dead draytek. My old (and much loved) 2950 died one monday morning recently. Had to drive to draytek uk to get a 2960. Took 30 mins to configure. Love it.

My home 2860 is perhaps a *little* over specced for it's purpose but replaced the dead 2800 beautifully.

Doesn't matter how good they are, everything dies in the end.

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Don't crack that Mac: Almost NOTHING in new Retina MacBook Pros can be replaced

John Stirling

Re: This is England?

Uh, no.

EU wide two year warranty bought in following the 1999 directive gives two years. Scotland gives 5 years, England gives 6. The latter two coming from the Sale of Goods Act 1979, and the Supply of Goods & Services Act 1982.

The crappy EU extension is occasionally used by shops and manufacturers to wriggle out of their legal obligations when people don't know their rights, but I'm afraid you are wrong. England is indeed the consumer rights capital of the world. In that one incredibly narrow respect anyway. Even better than GB, UK or EU.

I have no clue about the Welsh, or Irish.

That isn't a comment about consumer protection by the way, just a broad statement.

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Brit bloke busted over backdoor blagging of US troops' data

John Stirling

hyperbole much.....

Obviously we'll never know the detail, but the last arse who thought it was ok to hack the pentagon looking for flying saucers apparently walked in through an open door - I assume the 'millions of dollars in damages' that he caused was mainly putting a password on the system.

There is often lots of noise and heat because the incompetent who committed the crime (and if guilty it is a crime, make no mistake - he is 28, not 12, and he is accused of inserting code to steal real data, he didn't just go looking for flying saucers) embarrassed them. If you embarrass the Government (pretty much any Government) expect pain. It isn't justice, it's revenge. Well sometimes it's both.

Personally I'd prefer it if the US lived up to the one thing they did create which is a) fucking awesome, and b) pretty much all their own work (unlike all that technology that they are claiming in posts further up this page) which is the US constitution. It is a shame that most Americans cannot see how their Government is undermining their own rights, by attacking ours with secret illegal hacking, but vitriol and anti Americanism won't fix that. (Electing politicians who are honest would be a good start, but that appears to be something of an oxymoron)

I'd rather we had a system where the evidence had to be presented to a British court, but that isn't the USA's fault, but rather our own idiotic professional politicians. But do I have sympathy for the modern day 'Robin Hood'? Not as the story is presented, sounds like an arse.

In fact, to use an Americanism - a dumbass.

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Behold, the MONSTER-CLAWED critter and its terrifying SPIDER BRAIN

John Stirling

convergent evolution

different phylum, bigger, and more importantly, exists now!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F5FEj9U-CJM

makes your 'giant claw' thing look like... well lunch.

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Deep Impact succumbs to 'HAL bug' as glitch messes with antenna

John Stirling

Re: It was a Y2K problem ..

It probably already has a few more bytes than 'required' which is why it was going 7 years after the planned end date. If you 'just add one more byte' to every situation that might require it you end up with a satellite too heavy to launch.

And with the capability (apologies for mixing my satellites and fictional universes) of becoming V'Ger, if you ever get it off the ground.

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Apple can't dump Samsung, it needs those iPad displays – report

John Stirling

Re: Competition

Samsung may have an 'internal market' like BT - but it is more likely they are vertically integrated - i.e. although there is an internal price that goes into the calculations of the end product price, there is no formal legal transaction separating the screen manufacture from the tablet/phone manufacture and sale.

BT only had formal separation imposed because they were a privatised national monopoly who were abusing their monopoly once privatised.

Ultimately you have to rent the copper from BT - unless you want to run your own (virgin media) - but no-one has to buy Samsung screens.

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Go ahead, Asia, have a look in your Dropbox... We DARE you - hackers

John Stirling

@murph

maybe they think you're a world leader?

that's cool right?

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D-Wave IS QUANTUM, insist USC scientists

John Stirling

to address the chap worried about the average intelligence of commentards...

...But does it run Far Cry?

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Wikileaks leaks documentary script about Wikileaks

John Stirling

I'm interested to see. ..

...that one person being an ass has sufficiently destroyed good will that the consensus on here (a generally liberal rational forum) is that whistle blowing is bad and governments should keep whatever secrets they like.

after all if wiki leaks had taught us anything it is that authority can be trusted. ..

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Apple asked me for my BANK statements, says outraged reader

John Stirling
FAIL

colour scans?

I believe it is a breach of crown copyright to make colour copies of a passport. Apple encouraging copyright theft. sounds like a headline to me.

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UK.gov blows a fuse at smart meter stall, sets new 2020 deadline

John Stirling
Mushroom

@ hardened?

About as well as my pc. My TV. My laptop. My fridge. My phone. Please don't use emp as an anti smart meter campaign device. I liked the 20th century. I like the 21st century. I don't want to live in the 19th century. Even without smart meters.

Not so much a sledgehammer as a steam roller to crack a nut.

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NTT Docomo leads 5G push with 10Gbps uplink tests

John Stirling

Re: Fantastic

You are entirely correct - these fast data services are just a clever ruse. I have refused to use any phone capable of more than GPRS - everything else is just a clever ploy to confuse me. 114 Kbps should be (more than) enough for anybody. I'm still using 14.4 at home, and that allows me to surf almost without restriction. Of course I do have to stop the browser downloading anything except text, but really what advances have there been in the last 15 years which don't simple detract from a good 'all your bases are belong to us' meme?

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Apple seeks whopping $2.525bn Samsung patent payout

John Stirling

Re: "They did not invent."

and yet it is the rounded corners which are worth $22 dollars per machine.

Since we agree that the rounded corners are not special we must therefore agree that the litigation is largely (in financial terms) baseless, and that the company pursuing baseless litigation is therefore being 'bad', and is nothing special.

Then we can subsequently agree that they should get out of the courtroom, and get back to marketing products peerlessly.

Glad we're all in agreement

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John Stirling

Re: bloody ridiculous...

Apple did well with the iphone for two reasons, 1) it was an Apple product, and they have seriously loyal (to the point of irrational) customers - how lucky are they?, and 2) the technology had reached the point where it worked. There were many smart phones previously, I owned some of them, reasonably large screens (but not as big, or hi res, as they weren't practical), reasonably functional (but not as functional), and a bit heavier.

The iphone was a fairly obvious improvement in terms of hardware and design tailored to a tightly designed, and highly quality assured user interface - which now looks rather dated, but at the time was revolutionary - but let us remember, it was the software that made it an iphone not the hardware.

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John Stirling
FAIL

Re: "They did not invent."

Hmm, methinks you don't understand the difference between 'design' and 'function'. I will grant you that the function is different, but the opprobrium being heaped upon Apple isn't about function it is about design - specifically rectangular with rounded corners.

The thing could be used to make toast for all it matters in terms of function, it is a rectangular tablet with rounded corners, that is the intellectual 'property' Apple sought to protect, and that is the IP that they clearly did NOT invent.

whether they are due the pennies for the function around fumble fingers, I don't know, maybe, but they can sod off for the design.

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Apple wins US ban on Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1

John Stirling
WTF?

Re: Fandroids at it again....

Hmm, if only 99% were different, then presumably Apple copied the other 1%, and are therefore guilty of trying to protect prior art?

Design patents are crap - Copyright is there to protect how things look - Patents are there to protect how things work.

To be honest, Samsung's tab does look like Apple's - there are significant differences in functionality, but the form is similar - whether that was deliberate or not is both currently uncertain (I mean in fact rather than histrionic opinion), and irrelevant - a judge should decide whether the appearance is derivative (fine), or copyright infringement (bad), and that should be that. Design patents are a bad thing and restrict consumer choice.

Regardless of how and whether patents actually work, they are not a law of nature, and their purpose is to promote innovation not stifle it, and design patents can only stifle innovation, not promote it, and should be banned.

Apple is entirely within their rights to use a design patent to protect their turf, that is the law after all, but no one should be confused about the morally shitty territory they are inhabiting to do so. If you're an 'end justifies the means' sort of chap, and like Apple you'll be cool with it, if you have absolute moral rules beyond which you think it is not cool to travel, then you should be critical of Apple's actions, regardless of whether you also disapprove of Samsung probably being blatantly guilty of deriving their design from the ipad, and possibly making infringing copies of Apple's quite frankly beautiful AND derivative design.

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Larry Ellison buys island 1000x bigger than Branson's

John Stirling
Devil

The State of Oracle

You're missing the big picture - Hawaii and any of it's component islands have the constitutionally protected right to secede from the US by way of a referendum where more than 80% of the population vote for it. Wait a while while Larry gets the islanders onside then watch him declare independence, and move Oracle there as the first pure corporate state...

Ok, I am completely making all that up - but how cool (and scary) would it be?

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Ubuntu 12.04 LTS strikes Hyper-V first with Microsoft

John Stirling

unity

no, but I have, and do. It has one of the steepest learning curves of any UI I have ever used, but you have to climb it quickly, as until you have you can't even switch the bloody machine off. Once I climbed it, I found that unity slunk into the background, and I could get on with work.

Do I like unity - hell, why not. Did I like it immediately. Hell no.

My 'perfect' interface is windows XP, skinned down to look as close to win98 as I can make it, i.e. no themes, narrow menu, task bar, small icons, personalisation switched off.

Why is that perfect? Because I have used it for bloody years. Can I manage anything else? Of course.

The world moves on. Unity apparently offers advantage to Canonical, and theoretically to developers, so cool, I'll learn, I'm relatively technical. I have managed to migrate from nokia to blackberry, and thence to android, I can manage unity.

The question about whether Ubuntu is succeeding is not whether a bunch of hardcore linux heads like Ubuntu, it''s how many paying customers Canonical has for Ubuntu - and those are (apparently) growing, so by the metric that conveys survival probability things are improving.

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Battlefield Earth ruled worst film EVER

John Stirling
Devil

ha, youngsters Get off my lawn

For the youngsters - Reign of Fire - appallingly awful.

But for those who remember the great days of poor movies (no, not the 40s/50s/60s/70s, but the 80s!)

Creepozoids.

I doubt you will find any trace now.

Wait, oh my god, I am wrong, IMDB & wikipedia both have entries. Wikipedia is even nice about it. Go look, this makes anything on that list or subsequently mentioned, and I mean anything, look like high art indeed.

Mind you, if I remember correctly there is quite a good nude shower scene (with out ANY justification in the plot) so perhaps it isn't quite so bad.... No, even that can'r save it.

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Chinese and US military square off for cyber war games

John Stirling

Re: @AC 11:22

No, that should be "w'hat a pr'ick"

If you cannot randomly insert apo'strophe's into your pro'se - e'specially before every ''s' - then plea'se dont bother ['sic]

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Hold on, Booker prize judges - Stob's penned a steampunk hit

John Stirling
Flame

Re: novel

Hmm. Casually vacant judgement whilst confirming a complete lack of basis to do so.

Ok, they aren't great, but my 7 yr old daughter is utterly hooked. On reading. Real books.

Think about that for a moment. Of course perhaps I should insist that if she wants to read real books she read nothing less complex than Dostoyevsky but I am of the opinion that might cause her not to be so keen on books. So thank you JK - and good luck to you.

Of course I might be picking the wrong alternative here - perhaps you could provide the list of books that you deem acceptable. If you could also confirm the ones you have actually been arsed to read, so I know whether your opinion is fictional or based in reality that would help too.

Anyway - sorry for the strong attempt at a defence of Harry Potter - not really in character - but you set me off. If you'd said you had read them and thought them shit I wouldn't have blinked - it's the casual (that word again) ignorance I detest.

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Himalayan glaciers actually GAINING ice, space scans show

John Stirling

Re: AGW->more moisture in the air->more snow->more glacier

ya, because doubling rainfall, and increasing the temperature at 15,000 ft from -40 c to -30 c would cause much melting.... not.

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John Stirling
WTF?

Re: Here we have

Disclosure: I think AGW (anthropic global warming) is probably real. I think the solution with be geo-engineering rather than going back to an agrarian culture, or reducing population by 40%.

There is money talking on both sides. The AGW mob have (generally ) more dedicated zealots who lie because they care. The non AGW mob have more money, and more willingness to defend the money.

I think characterising the AGW lot as money grubbing because they are paid is an ad hominem attack which reflects more on how the attacker views the world than those they are attacking. However some of the AGW lot are crap scientists despite making their living doing that, because they 'interpret' data which is of insufficient quality and quantity to be reliably interpreted, and make unwarranted (not necessarily incorrect, but insufficiently robust) assertions.

That the issue is 'nothing less than crucial to the future of humanity' is completely irrelevant. That humanity finds it perfectly sensible to take a 'precautionary principle' approach to genetic modification, and yet finds nothing weird about conducting a global experiment on the very habitat we need is simply an example of why we are all such interesting conversationalists, and generally crap logicians.

To address Mad Mike's point that I am answering - whilst at the same time making my own point about the quality of the debate;

You attack the previous poster for quoting numbers without references, and then without references say 'yeah, but they don't care anyway' - in your opinion. At least the numbers are checkable (or uncheckable - in which case call BS) - whereas your assertion that power companies are unthreatened by tax rises and AGW furore is simply that, an assertion, and frankly not a very credible one.

Your sister may be an excellent scientist, and she may be well aware of her terms of employment, but that is purely empirical data with no reference point. Again, useless for furthering debate.

Finally - my own assertions are entirely opinion (except when they aren't), and I have done no fact checking whatsoever, but at least I already know this, and won't get upset when someone (hopefully) points it out.

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Death Star dinosaur aliens could rule galaxy

John Stirling

Re: And then...

After 65 million years even the slow tectonic plates are going to have moved a couple of thousand kilometres, and the quick ones double that. That means most of the evidence of an industrial civilisation is going to have been subducted back under the crust.

Sort of a clean up and start again system - a complete renewal every 100 million years or so.

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Commodore outs Linux-running Amiga Mini desktop

John Stirling

Death of Commodore/Amiga

I vaguely remember Commodore proudly announcing the appointment of the man behind the PCJr to head up their commercial proposition shortly before they destroyed their market by cost cutting all their best new products into uselessness.

He single handedly destroyed IBM in the PC world for years, and then destroyed Commodore completely. I can only assume he interviewed well.

I can't remember his name, but I do remember being rather annoyed at the time, as I was a proper Amiga fanboi - long before these apple fanbois, or fandroids got going. The real war was Amiga/Amstrad or C64/Spectrum before that.

These modern fanbois don't know they're born....

Somewhere I probably still have reams of 'C' containing the entire Amiga OS. Well the GUI part anyway.

And this product (to provide some vague justification for a rambling rant)?

Nah, don't think I'll bother thanks, but good luck to them if they can get some money out of punters.

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Anonymous shuts down hidden child abuse hub

John Stirling
Stop

To A J Stiles, getting the point

'what do you think some of these people are going to do, now they can no longer get their jollies with a few pictures and a box of Kleenex?'

Hmm, Mr Stiles; the report mentions 100GB of images. Not illustrations. 100GB of images of children. Whilst it is theoretically possible these are all harmless holiday snaps of children in swimming costumes on a beach with their families - it is more likely (based on the average prosecution) that some at least involve rape and sexual murder of children, real and genuine physical violence of the worst kind against some of the most defenceless members of our society.

So I am afraid I do not accept your 'aggregation' argument - presumably that if one child is raped and murdered 50 pedos can get off, and therefore 49 children are 'saved' - there is a recognised problem of dehumanisation, and whilst in many areas I am an utter libertarian (my limits are pretty much that if you are a competent adult, and consensual then anything goes); using children to sate a paedophile, who will in any event likely escalate his needs next time is never acceptable, not to mention ineffective.

If, as previously mentioned in these comments these pedo sites seed their data with false positives then there will be problems with public disclosure (proving you 'didn't do it' to a raging mob would present a significant challenge); but taking these arseholes down by any means and providing the data to law enforcement so they can get the individuals is a worthy use of anonymous members' excessive spare time.

Disclosure; I have two small children, and may not be the coldly logical thinker on this issue that I like to think of myself as.

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Court bans man called Peter from calling himself Peter

John Stirling
Happy

(non) anonymous

Isn't the fact that he was known on the internet by his real name rather good circumstantial evidence that he isn't actually guilty?

Surely the anon/lulz lot all have names like l33t h4x0r and sp00n 04 d00m and other cool stuff like that?

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AES crypto broken by 'groundbreaking' attack

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Go Daddy sued over email alerts

John Stirling
Flame

Go Daddy go!

Please, for the love of all things 'obvious' fight.

I am pretty sure I still have a few examples of prior art from when my dentist used to remind me to get my teeth scrubbed every 6 months.

Also HMRC infringe this patent every year by reminding me to file a tax return.

And finally - my BOFH alert from El Reg - could be costly for us all.

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Stand by for more big, windfarm-driven 'leccy price rises

John Stirling

evening out windpower

A bloody great big flywheel at the bottom of every windmill (or group of windmills). The mills power it up, the grid draws off power at a steady regular pace - even out the supply from 'anywhere between nothing and loads' to somewhere in the middle.

Quote this as prior art if you like when someone patents it.

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'Thickest burglar' leaves passport at scene of raid

John Stirling

Daily mail readers unite

When my family was burgled it took almost as little time to work out who the little scrote was. He was suitably punished. Being about 14 (I was 16 at the time) he was not 'set for life' and as far as I know he has gone straight (as of a few years ago, some 20 years later) It was upsetting, he was quite 'disruptive' in the mess he left, but once the shock had gone we bore him no malice.

This poor loser sounds like he really doesn't know anything else - the comments on here about 'obviously rehab hasn't helped him' are probably misspoken, it has almost certainly never been tried - and as a thought, why would someone take their personal possessions with them when burglaring? The only reason I can think of is homelessness.

If I was fresh out of prison, homeless and hopeless I think a quick non violent burglary would be just about the best outcome for all.

It is all very well pointing out what a hopeless loser he is (and let's face it he is), but he probably has no options now - jobs are not exactly falling from trees for those who do not have to explain big gaps in their work history, the recently incarcerated are stuffed. If we want to get ex cons to go straight we have as a society at least to make it no more difficult than for those of us with a natural disposition to play by the rules.

Just making prison less pleasant (and I don't personally relish it as it is) isn't going to make a difference, other than to allow the daily mail set to make tutting sounds about recidivists, and how it's 'in their blood'.

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BlackBerry users get free remote wipe, backup and location

John Stirling

blackberry for android? that would be barking mad

Wouldn't that just be a not very good email client? Like all the others on Android and ios?

I've moved from blackberry to android with my last change, and in so many ways I love my new phone, sorry palm size computing platform with phone capability, but blackberry email rules, and rules really really hard. The reason for that is because they control the platform, so all the little design compromises that slip in are there to improve email, whereas on android/ios it's all about the 'user experience' and screen, and multi touch, and market place, and multimedia and and and. With the result that there are no good email clients. Not the way blackberry is a good email client.

You can see the difference by adding a 'imap to a normal server' email to a blackberry - it's also crap.

The magic is the combination of knowing the hardware inside out, controlling the server software, and writing the client.

If Blackberry want to play in the wider space they need to get better at the 'everything else', but email (and messaging, bb messenger is cool too), they have sorted. I miss the email, and it might on it's own be enough to push me back, even though in every other way my new galaxy s is worlds better.

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Passenger cleared after TSA checkpoint stare-down

John Stirling

@rjf

Ah then since there have been no liquid recombination bombs then clearly the 'no liquids' rule isn't just for looks. I have elephant repellers in my garden, and indeed have not seen an elephant since I started using them - clearly they work.

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BOFH: Who's been naughty and who's been nice?

John Stirling
Thumb Up

Ho ho ho

Merry Christmas

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'Rock star' spewed guts after emitting vast pearl necklace

John Stirling

6 trillion miles is all very well,

but can we have that in SI units please?

How many football fields is that?

Or is it aircraft carriers for length, I can never remember.

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.XXX domain deal stripped bare

John Stirling
Welcome

@Network Manager

You are clearly not a refugee from a religious upbringing. Lucky you.

The religious mind relies heavily on ignorance. The faithful are not persuaded by logic, or reasonable dialogue to avoid sin. They are scared into virtue, and scared into ignorance. An enquiring mind is rarely a religious mind.

The religious mind must object to this - not to do so would be tacitly admitting it has a right to exist, and that cannot be admitted. The religious solution is not for .xxx to stay .com, it's for porn.com to be banned and cease to exist.

It is an amusing irony that the religious right and the porn industry all agree on what a bad idea .xxx is - none of them for particularly good reasons however.

Personally I'm all in favour - and welcome our .xxx overlords.

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Secret ancient code, basis of all modern civilisation, cracked

John Stirling

(in)finity

To answer;

1. Infinity, e.g. as in the existence of an infinite number of primes, is proven.

2. Finite sets do not contain infinite sets.

The set of the digits zero to nine has exactly 10 members, and yet all numbers (an infinite number of them) can be constructed without going outside members of that set.

Make it the set containing the digits zero to nine and the set containing the period (1 member), and then an infinitely larger than the previously infinitely large number of numbers can be constructed from members of these two sets, both of which have finite (and precisely defined) numbers of members.

Ok, so it isn't a proof, in fact it's bollocks, but it's AT LEAST as rigorous as the other bollocks.

For a slightly more rigorous answer to 2 above; yes that is correct, and your fallacy is that the universe does not contain the set of all possible primes, or indeed any infinite set (that we are aware of). It does contain symbols which allow you to manipulate infinite sets, and this (as my counter argument does robustly demonstrate) says precisely nothing about the infinite (or otherwise) scope of our universe.

IANAMAPOAWOWOWP (I am no a mathematician a philosopher or a wanky old weirdo obsessed with plato)

0
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Diary of a somebody - life in iPhone 4 land

John Stirling

ifever

It is a phone.

It is cool, and it's users are generally enormously happy, and can on occasion be slightly smug. They are expensive products, if I spend that much on something I will generally be happy with it, and will have programmed myself to believe it is excellent. Most people do this.

Those of us who don't like the Apple business model can sometimes react negatively to our perception that Apple are smug, over bearing, and ethically questionable.

Quite frankly those who are advocates of Apple products, or even evangelists may appear to those of us who are not as perhaps not entirely rational, and we may even react to what we perceive as being manipulative big corporate tactics, but actually they are just reaffirming their purchase decision, and by doing so reconfirming their positive reasons for making that decision.

However I just wish WE COULD ALL just recognise that none of us, the 'lovers' the 'fanbois', the 'haterz', or the 'rationalists' are entirely rational in our views, we are all over reacting and falling into silly flame wars.

Look at me, most rational post on here by far, and yet....

...was it rational for me to spend 30 minutes reading an article, and comments, and then another 10 writing a reply regarding a subject that I am at best vaguely equivocal about.

mad, all of us

1
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Pakistani lawyer petitions for death of Mark Zuckerberg

John Stirling
WTF?

Prove there is/isn't a God

To anon @ 10:51 - I believe the 'flying spaghetti monster' answers this old chestnut more than adequately.

You do not need to prove the absence of something for which there is not only no reliable or repeatable experimental evidence, but not even a decent theory. I'll accept that there is a hypothesis, and that it has evolved continually since we as a species were complex enough to conceptualise, but that hypothesis has never qualified itself as a theory, because there are no testable predictions, and no prospect of any.

Believing in God is no less ridiculous than believing in Solipsism, or simulation theory - indeed at least simulation theory has a statistical argument on it's side, and the prospect of testability as science advances. God cannot be tested, by definition, if we identify an entity in a 'heaven' then by definition it isn't God.

Sorry for going even further off topic, but I cannot let God apologists go without at least a polite challenge to their intellectual credibility.

It's probably because I am envious of their smug certainty or something...

4
1

Labour manifesto changes a byte bit

John Stirling

I'm not a fan of labour

and that is an understatement.

But on this occasion I'm going to stand up for them.

This is a minor correction, and an example of using digital media well. If you can come up with a substantive example then do so, and let's hang the evil minded lying bastards by the yardarms.

Otherwise please desist from whichever form of made up argument this is 'and if they did something else much worse than what they have done that would be bad, so they are bad'.

0
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Boffins turn Bunsen burners on Frank Skinner

John Stirling

-gate suffixes

Stuff a scandal about water being complicated for journos. I want the original Watergate hotel to be in a scandal, because by the rules of extension that would now be a Watergategate.

1
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Opera's Jon Von Tetzchner on browser choice, the iphone and Google

John Stirling
Linux

@Haydies

You misunderstand the point of anti trust actions.

You are also clearly pointing at Apple in terms of illegal actions.

Microsoft are a convicted monopolist. Many of the practices they carried on would put an individual in prison if conducted on an individual basis. This is not MS bashing, or an opinion, it is a matter of historical fact, and formal legal finding.

Apple are in some ways equally evil - but have never been convicted of blackmail (or whatever the corporate version is). Apple own the whole stack, hardware and software, therefore they have more legal clout in how they influence your use of your machine. They also only own around 10% of the market - if people dislike their practices there are realistic, widely available, cheap alternatives.

When MS were really naughty there weren't any realistic alternatives, and they owned over 90% of the personal computing market.

There are differences.

In relation to the whole 'it's all a long time ago' argument - if something is a crime it needs to be pursued, if a company (or individual) can get away with it y fighting it until it becomes 'no longer relevant' then the incentive not to commit crime evaporates for those able to afford expensive lawyers who can run the clock indefinitely. That is not a world I would like to live in, it's bad enough as is.

sorry, hopelessly offtopic, but time does not make these things irrelevant - other than purely technologically.

Oh, I own no apple devices (never have, hate job's lockdown, although they are mostly gorgeous and well designed), and am writing this on windows XP. Hypocrite, moi?

1
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Spanish priest spunked €17k on chat lines and whores

John Stirling
Paris Hilton

I was ruined by the Catholic Church

As a choir boy and altar boy in the Catholic Church, I grew up with a stain on my conscience.

I was broken, distraught, and upset.

The local priests never touched me, leaving me with the unanswered question...

...what was wrong with me?

And you thought the 'sky fairies' comment was inflammatory... not anonymous, because unlike you lot I don't herd cows.

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Men at Work appeal Down Under plagiarism ruling

John Stirling
Happy

funny though...

...that some of the proponents of eternal copyright (EMI/BMG etc) have been bitten by the idiocy of it.

Plus, 2:24, Christopher Ecclestone, or just my imagination? Presumably from when he was Dr Who.

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BT could face criminal case over Phorm trials

John Stirling
FAIL

@The Guv

You are taking an ironic position here aren't you?

Or are you also in favour of not prosecuting ANY crime where no harm is done?

In which case, I think that is 99% of parking tickets gone (with lack of evidence of specific harm), all speeding which doesn't result in an accident, drunk driving on the same basis. After all by your own measure systemic harm is not sufficient, specific harm is required.

Some things are crimes because of the potential for harm - not necessarily because of harm done, and this is one such crime.

We have privacy laws because if large corporations, and the state are allowed unbridled access to the secrets of their customers/citizens they have a 100% record throughout history of abusing that power.

In the case of corporations, over/monopoly charging is generally the outcome, in the case of states, totalitarianism.

Of course because you have no sense of history, no awareness of the wider world, and apparent faith in 'the authorities' you will decry me as a tin foil hat wearing loony.

Believe me, we tin foil hat wearing loonies sincerely hope you are right, but fear you are simply uninformed.

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Angels can't fly: Official

John Stirling
Pint

useless research haters

To be sure this isn't what we are paying for, I think he does the real research the rest of the year - this is just a bit of seasonal frivolity - for a laugh.

I'm sure those who dislike such rubbish research will say that he should not be allowed to have fun occasionally, and perhaps their own lives reflect this commitment to serious discourse.

Oh, wait, they have posted here - that's pretty frivolous.

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Secret neo-Nazi documents published

John Stirling
Pint

nazi vs left wing 'outing'

I think the criteria should probably be something along the lines of;

Has this political view ever resulted in tyranny, war, or mass murder?

Which pretty much leaves out non political views (so 'Jewishness' won't get outed Mr Anon Coward)

The greens probably escape (although I will admit not having real light bulbs does smack of tyranny)

But the Nazis, and the Communists both get their lists published.

Personally I'd also out all and any religious groups on the arbitrary basis that I'm not a fan of religion, but I can't come up with an objective justification, other than perhaps the Scientologists on the basis of attempts at tyranny, if you count hundreds of nutjob lawyers attempting to stifle debate and criticism as tyranny.

BNP - well that was just funny.

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