189 posts • joined Wednesday 13th February 2008 17:27 GMT
Don't forget Estonia
In Talinn all the private and public buildings got together to provide free WiFi everywhere. No tendering for a single party contract, just an agreement thrashed out in bars and meeting rooms.
Didn't Mary Leakey take Kenyan citizenship after independence, or was it just her children like Philip Leakey?
Estonia has it sorted
Years ago Talinn got free WiFi throughout much of the town. It was simply a matter of getting every government office and private business to agree to offer free WiFi into the street. It is only in the USA that municipal WiFi fails. In the civilised world there are successes.
The copyright in a photograph belongs to the photographer, not those photographed. You do not need to get their permission to take the photograph, nor exhibit your photographs, except when used in commercial advertising. That is what model release forms are for. So it comes down to who took the photograph, not who i in the picture.
National Museum of Computing
You can see a lot of the computers mentioned in Parts 1 and 2 of this article in the National Museum of Computing, located at Bletchley Park (www.tnmoc.org). I went there on a trip with Reading BCS, and spent fascinating hours going through all the computers, from a working Colossus replica to a surface computer implementation of the BBC's Doomsday project.
We make better comedy equivalents of dramas
MI High was an improvement on Spooks. While transformed for children's TV, they also added comedy.
New Tricks was better than Waking the Dead. Comedy cold cases with actors of former TV detectives playing retired policemen beats the forced, US-style, agonizing on Waking the Dead.
Let's celebrate and export quirky British comedy, and forget about the drama.
We don't set limits on the movement of capital around the world, and have minimised duty on the movement of goods, so why bother restricting the movement of people?
Our economy would benefit from no immigration controls.
If you are really worried about the total population, we just need to deny citizenship and kick out of the country people born here who didn't get any qualifications at school.
The video is now private. We can no longer watch it, thanks to the curse of El Reg.
Re: A little bit of knowledge does no harm - it's essential
One thing I learned in my GCEs that were useful later? Well,
1. From RK, how the Bible was written by 4 groups of people, helped me when a Jehovah's Witness came around.
2. I still use some of the French I learned (although if I had been taught by the techniques now used to teach adults, I would be able to speak it fast enough to keep up with Frenchmen).
3. I learned enough trigonometry to be able to navigate a yacht.
Well, he actually got some thing going in Northern Ireland before he pissed off to London.
But posters are right to say he is no techie (at least not recently) - his job was to persuade technophobic civil servants and Stormont's finest to follow his lead, while the techies got on with things. Now Des Vincent could do that and knew his technology.
We don't need TV
when we can always read El Reg.
why leave out El Reg's own space efforts in the review?
I expected to see something about P.A.R.I.S and L.O.H.A.N
Aotearoa is a more accurate description
"The long white cloud" tells you that it is cloudy and rains all the time, as it was in Rotorua two weeks ago.
Wayback record not very shocking
I went to web.archive.org and looked at its latest cache of www.solicitorsfromhell.co.uk - back in April. It was a site full of complaints from often anonymous posters, not directed at one particular solicitor. The submission form does not ask you for your identity, just to pay £1 for the complaint to go live.
Back in April it only had one posting on Hine Solicitors and none on McGrath, so I guess the libels complained about were posted later. The single posting about Hine Solicitors was clearly from someone who doesn't understand criminal procedure, rather than a documented complaint (like most of the complaints about conveyancing).
Facebook Android apps want the world
Including the right to spend my money on sending SMS text messages, in a recent update.
So I removed all updates to the Facebook app., and would delete it completely if I could.
Protecting the big against the small
Imagine the outcry if there was legislation limiting the competition small corner shops could make to Tesco. This is clearly discriminatory legislation, protecting the big commercial stations against small local ones.
Take for example the Disability Discrimination Act. That applies to anyone providing a service, not just employers. It definitely applies to Google Plus. But as they don't insist on graphical input, that is one of the few ways they don't discriminate. It is not only the DDA. A lot of consumer law applies to services offered to consumers.
Rural people subsidise city dwellers
Imagine if supermarkets had to pay farmers fair prices. Then there would be enough money in the villages to pay for long-distance microwave links to connect to the Internet, like many towns in Australia use. In Warnambool, whenever the Internet goes down, someone has to go to the top of a hill to realign a microwave dish.
Data trumps stories
See http://www.groklaw.net/staticpages/index.php?page=OracleGoogle for all the real gen.
The copyright claims are getting weaker as people dig up more statements from Sun that used to be on Sun's java site (which Oracle has difficulties recovering for the court case). But Orlikowski is right to point out that Google engineers and lawyers should have paid more attention to what licence conditions Sun set rather than relying on statements from Sun executives who are no longer there.
If enough patents claims are found invalid in the re-examinations (see tables), then the Motorola patents could be enough to trade for the remaining valid claims. As for the Nortel ones, Google gave up bidding when it found itself up against a consortium of everyone else, trying to establish an oligopoly. US and EU regulators are looking at the competition effects of the purchase of Novell patents. They might do the same for the Nortel ones.
All this goes to show that the effective purpose of patents in fast-moving industries is not to support innovation, but to help large companies keep out new entrants.
Facebook apps take too many liberties
I recently refused to upgrade the Facebook Android app because it requires permissions to automatically send text messages. That will cost me money. I tried to completely uninstall the Facebook app, but couldn't, as Motorola have fixed it there.
However, earlier versions have already taken the contact data on the phone (particularly the phone numbers) and uploaded it to Facebook. It doesn't matter whether they officially share this data with advertisers or others - all it takes in one Facebook employee to be in the pay of News International or the UVF to make this a danger.
A reason to remove the Facebook app
As soon as I saw that, I tried to remove the Facebook app from my Motorola Milestone. It wasn't possible (it was manufacturer installed), so I just removed all the updates, bringing it down to the minimal original set of permissions.
This is the unlikely problem they are trying to solve
Someone in transit between international flights at Heathrow, without a UK visa, changes tickets with someone booked on a domestic flight. They he flies somewhere like Belfast, where he won't be checked by immigration (just a policeman looking for local terrorists/informers). After that he takes a train to Dublin, where he gets a job in a bank and brings down the Euro.
Even broadcasters don't bother to monitor DAB
Here in Belfast, nearly every day there are some hours when Radio Ulster on DAB is overlaid with hiss, so that it is unlistenable. And every couple of weeks we loose all local stations from DAB (while Radio 4 and other national stations carry on).
It looks like no-one at the BBC is monitoring the output of the DAB broadcasts. Otherwise problems would not take hours or days to fix.
Perhaps we should send in postcards with reception reports, like those sent to shortwave stations?
Yet another govt. department using a spreadsheet for database work
The shocking thing is not that the error wasn't noticed - but that they used a spreadsheet, a tool that easily allows errors such as these.
While it is not surprising for an Olympic agency to use Excel for a database of all cultural events, I would have expected MI5 to have the third best CRM system in the country (after GCHQ and MI6).
Does it kill grubs?
if the MBR contains GRUB or LILO instead of a Windows MBR?
The site has been falling over for a couple of weeks
In particular, pages giving openoffice extensions have often failed to return quickly enough.
Asteroid approach, all right
with acknowledgements to I'm Sorry, I'll Read That Again.
It's the data, not the documents, stupid
data.gov.uk and data.gov provide lots of data in forms that computer programs can manipulate and mash up to do new things (see, e.g., parkopedia). The best data sources also include RDF markup (or even ontologies) so the computer programs can work out what the data means.
None of those things can be done by indexing the frequency of words in documents.
The Semantic Web turns the web into a distributed database - not just lots of documents.
What about free reports?
published by voluntary organisations?
They can be downloaded at a price of zero, and the organisations are not in the main a publishing business.
Feed-in tariffs are an insurance policy
The point of paying more for renewable energy now is that when the oil and gas run out, we won't be left without any power. Since we are already past peak oil, we are talking about supply restrictions within 20 years.
Like any insurance premium, you pay more now to save money later. In this case, some of us are paying a premium now for our children and grandchildren's sake. This seems fair to everyone except for greedy selfish bastards.
Kazakhstan censors the Internet in Krygyzstan
Because all IP routes into Kyrgyzstan come through Kazakhstan, their web access is censored by the Kazakh web filters, that heavily censor what Kazakhs can see.
Motorola updates always late
The Froyo update for the Milestone is nearly a year late, at the time other manufacturers are upgrading to 2.3. And it can only be upgraded using an installer that runs under Windows. I wonder if Motorola has any good Linux programmers, or is just expecting its Windows programmers to do the work without any training?
Just buy the Scottish e-petition system
Developed at the Teledemocracy centre at Napier Edinburgh University.
Why do the same again, when the team could try something new, like collaborative bill writing based on Aldo de Moor's GRASS.
Not the EU
There is no point complaining to the EU Parliament, since the Council of Europe is an association of most of the states in Europe, from Iceland to the Urals, including many countries not inside the European Union.
All its committees are manned by national diplomats, who then bring in experts. How this works depends on whether the particular diplomats have a clue about the subject. So you have the excellent Council of Europe report setting out minimum standards for e-democracy: and this badly researched report.
Need an assumption of corruption bill
Make everyone who moves from a regulator to a company benefit from it have to go to jail until they have proved beyond reasonable doubt that they have not acted corruptly.
Better still, since both money and power corrupt, assume every rich or powerful person is corrupt.