* Posts by James Anderson

517 posts • joined 5 Apr 2007

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So what the BLINKING BONKERS has gone wrong in the eurozone?

James Anderson

Even simpler

Bankers and other financial types invested money they would not otherwise have invested in a dodgy creditor (Greece) in the mistaken belief that the EU/ECB was obliged to bail them out.

When Greece had trouble re-paying the debt the creditors should have taken a haircut (re-negotiate the loan so that most but not all the debt could be repaid).

But wait a minute most of the financial institutions that made the wrong call were based in France and Germany -- so suddenly the EU/ECB was obliged to mount a rescue; Not of Greece, but the idiots who had lent the money to a country that was clearly incapable of paying it back.

Having successfully saved it biggest banks and pension funds the German government balked at actually saving Greece (or even funding the EU bailout which saved their precarious banking system).

So the richest country in the EU, got bailed out at the expense of the poorest country. Then complained about it.

If we are all going to get to the end of the 21st century as anything but subsistence farmers then we really need to find an alternative this antiquated Victorian financial system which has reliably collapsed every 10 or 20 years for the past two centuries.

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UK.gov makes total pig's ear of attempt to legalise home CD ripping

James Anderson

whatever happened to

The sovereignty of parliament? UKIP may be a party onanists but they do have a point when it comes to who gets to rule the country. Do our elected representatives really need the approval of a bewigged septagenarian's interpretation of a document produced by a foreign bureaucrat before they can pass a law?

Come back Oliver Cromwell, all is forgiven (free wart removal on the NHS if you wait long enough ).

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Are you a Tory-voting IT contractor? Congrats! Osborne is hiking your taxes

James Anderson

Admittedly IR35 is a pain in the proverbial for contractors. But it does fulfill its main purpose of stopping big companies renaming there employees contractors and thus oiling their way out of any responsibilities to their workforce.

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Feel like you're being herded onto Windows 10? Well, you should

James Anderson

Windows 8 is actually OK once you re-instate the start button!

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Attention dunderheads: Taxpayers are NOT giving businesses £93bn

James Anderson

Re: Facilitating Evasion

Corporation tax is a tax on profits.

Profits = the money you made selling something - the cost of making and selling it.

"tax deductible" just means you are allowed to claim it as part of the expense of making or selling your goods or services. So for a bakery the flour, sugar, water, electricity, rent, advertising, running the delivery van, wages are all "tax deductible".

If nothing were deductible then corporation tax would be a tax on sales and not a tax on profits. At which point most small businesses would think sod this and shut up shop. Large businesses would move to somewhere with a saner tax system, and you would be paying twice as much for psudo bread at the big supermarket.

There is a massive amount of case law about what is tax deductible and what is not and it is constantly changing at the margin. If you drive your bread van home in the evening is this a legitimate expense of baking bread or are you getting a free ride home?

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James Anderson

The point where I concluded this guys an idiot.

Was the 15 billion or so attributed "to airlines and other industries not paying fuel tax"

Well its actually "road fuel tax" and its a tax targeted at people driving on roads. Its partly a simple tax to fund the enormous expense of building maintaining and policing our busy roads, and, partly social engineering to try to encourage people to cycle, take the train, walk anything but drive a car (a goal most Garniad readers would approve of).

If they did tax aircraft fuel the same a filling station fuel. Then you would probably end up driving to Paris or Amsterdam to catch a flight to New York. It would simply be uneconomic to operate an aircraft from the UK because no other country in the world taxes aviation fuel.

Incidentally if you are plowghing a field, pottering about on a canal, digging a hole, fishing for herring, consuming gin on your floating palace then you will also be receiving this "gift" from the taxman.

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James Anderson

When I read the article

My immediate though was Tim will have a field day with this.

While they may have had a point about not collecting enough tax from business they totally blew it by their ridiculous assertions.

They actually totally missed the real point. Its not not governments are generous with tax breaks to multinationals. Its more a case of however hard they try whatever cash box they try to raid always turns out to be empty.

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I cannae dae it, cap'n! Why I had to quit the madness of frontline IT

James Anderson

Send this e-mail and keep a copy.

Dear PHB,

While I appreciate the need for the company to return a profit to shareholders in the coming year I think your plan to cut the XXXX budget is counter productive.

The cuts impact the reliability and security of the system and place the companies profits at risk.

A days outage of the sales application will cost an estimated n zillion dollars. A serious security breach

could irreparably damage the reputation of the company and lose long term customers forever.

In order to comply with past budget cuts we have cut costs and improved our operations. However any further budget cuts will seriously effect our ability to provide a reliable and secure service.

The decision is your to make.

Regards

S Neaky

Ops Manager

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Which side of the road to drive?

James Anderson

Re: Which side of the road to drive?

There are exceptions for instance Switzerland is a left side of the road country but Post Buses in mountain areas have Left Hand drive. The reasoning being that its more important for the driver to see the edge of the road (which is probably a precipitous drop) than the middle of the road.

I think Right hand drive correlates with cultural superiority. Thailand, Japan, Malaysia (Austrailai being the exception that proves the rule.). Sweden used to but they got fed up bashing into oncoming Norwegians who forgot which country they were in.

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Linux on the desktop is so hot there's now a fight over it

James Anderson

Sp they have invented the X-Windows server then?

Which was all you ever need to run a Linux desktop remotely.

This was always the case before Gnome 3 etc came along, and as there seems to be considerable user resistance to the OS-Xalike desktops, 90 percent of the current installed base could be used as a remote desktop by enabling the X client.

But the problem with all these remote desktops is you need a real desktop to access them so why bother?

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James Anderson

Re: +1

The PC industry tied its fate to Microsoft.

The PC industry is dying (except for the inscrutable Lenovo) maybe its time for them to try something differnet.

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Microsoft picks up shotgun, walks 'Modern apps' behind the shed

James Anderson

Re: Still don't understand how this happened

They could have written a decent tablet OS/UI and left the windows desktop alone!

Tablets are used for play -- Facebook and Angry birds.

PCs are used for work -- Word, Excel, databases, custom applications etc.

There main cash cow is called "Office" after all

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James Anderson

What support load. The reason the web is littered with posts about "modern" apps freezing, not loading, disappearing etc. is that there is no effective support from MS. After the first couple of attempts you ignore the "MS"posts on google and look for "joe_the_geeks" blog as they have some real answers usually involving hacking registry entries and running powershell commands.

Currently along with a few thousand other users I cannot access the "Store" application. MS don't seem to care (I never buy anything) and neither do I really ( the machine is set up in "Windows 7, but without the 10 minute boot up time" mode).

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Fanbois designing Windows 10 – where's it going to end?

James Anderson

Only slightly better

than Sinofsky's hand picked focus groups that though windows 8 was such a great idea.

Any commercial survey group works very much like business consultancies. First they determine the answer the customer want to hear, then they go about gathering evidence for that specific answer.

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Poseidon's Wake, Naked at the Albert Hall and Farewell Kabul

James Anderson

Re: Space elephants

Why go so far. The ones here in Asia are pretty sentient. They understand about 50 words of Thai ( sadly about same as my Thai vocabulary), have a very considered approach to everyday problems, organize themselves into highly functional (mostly) non hierarchical groups. Are good at painting and crap at football ( like most beings outside Europe and South America they struggle with the offside rule).

You should try and meet one they are pretty good company.

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Watch out for the products that have snuck in behind your back

James Anderson

Even as someone who works in an IT department I find most IT departments to be too slow and too obstructive to be considered the first port of call for new software and systems.

Its just so much easier to bypass the IT procedures -- which generally involve a mess of form filling and half a dozen approvals ( some from people who have left the company) -- download the software and install it. I have my whole development environment off the Web rather than use the clunky out of date proprietary tools that are the "official" development environment.

Having bypassed my own IT department I can now surprise my business users by delivering software next month rather than the next year or never delivery date they have come to expect.

Most business users would rather go to a cheap dentist than have any interaction with IT. If IT had a culture of serving their business users than their convoluted internal politics then the Shadow Systems problem just would not arise.

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Thinking of following Facebook and going DIY? Think again

James Anderson

Got to rewrite all your existing applications.

The economics of AWS etc really only works if you are completely Open Source with either the classic LAMP stack or Java plus PostgreSQL or similar. You can just about get away with Windows .net and SQLserver as there are standard images for this which don't cost too much.

However if your existing application uses anything licensed you could end up paying more, and, anything that requires license key based on hardware just plain won't work. (You fire up the AWS image get the pretend MAC address email it to your software supplier, get the purchase cost approved and a week later your instant image is up and running)

Most existing legacy systems will have some annoying technical glitch that prevent easy deployment they may require an outdated version of a particular library, the LDAP address may be hard coded in a program -- all sorts of things that are wrongish but don't really cause that many problems in your own data centre become show stoppers in the cloud.

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What's Meg Whitman fussing over: The fate of HP ... or the font on a DISRUPTIVE new logo?

James Anderson

How long till....

HP inc is rebranded to COMPAQ perhaps with a grey box to signify that they are makers of PCs in grey boxes and for the first time ever the letter O will be a circle.

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Embarcadero’s cross-platform XE8 RAD Studio targets iOS 8, IoT

James Anderson

Searching for the dead C scrolls again

Verity Stobb must have here team of crack archaeologists searching for a lost scroll of "The Sons Of Khan" after the follwing fragment was found :

" .... and so he did lead the Sons Of Khan from the desolation of Metro to the Land Of Fruit .. "

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Forum chat is like Clarkson punching you repeatedly in the face

James Anderson

Re: Poor Oisin

Considering it was Jeeza who dubbed himself in, and, Oisin had no intention of taking the matter further -- in fact he thought he was going to be sacked for letting the worlds most unlikely media star run amok on his watch.

The most probable explanation is that after a hard days larking around JC decided enough was enought and delivered a spectacular resignation letter.

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This is what happens when a judge in New York orders an e-hit on a Chinese software biz

James Anderson

Re: Messed UP!

"Copyright expires" -- never happen if Disney gets its way.

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Windows 10 apps to rule them all – phones, slabs and PCs: Microsoft pulls out 'universal' tool

James Anderson

The folly of a single user interface

Image if Honda decided to make there customers like easier by have a single user interface for all thier products.

Maybe they would put a steering wheel and gear lever on the motor cycles.

Or perhaps a handbrake on the jetskis.

Or maybe do the microsoft thing and have a completely new interface for everything. Something intuitive like a tiller to steer with and an anchor to throw overboard when you want to stop.

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Web geeks grant immortality to Sir Terry Pratchett – using smuggled web code

James Anderson

The Hedgehog Song would be more appropriate

Probably the one and only time this statement could possibly be true :-)

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We need copyright reform so Belgians can watch cricket, says MEP

James Anderson

While agree with the thrust of the article -- Current copyright laws are bollocks. Just one small not to pick -- All the BBC channels are freely and legally available on Belgian cable TV though not Channel 4 which in keeping with its long tradition of broadcasting programs nobody watches televises cricket matches.

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Health & Safety is the responsibility of Connor's long-suffering girlfriend

James Anderson

Re: H&S.

Be a more useful statistic if they adjusted for the fact that the construction workforce is a fraction of what is was 40 years ago.

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Sir Terry remembered: Dickens' fire, Tolkien's imagination, and the wit of Wodehouse

James Anderson

Re: I can hear it now

YOU CAN STOP WRITING I DON'T WANT TO APPEAR IN ANY MORE BOOKS

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Clinton defence of personal email server fails to placate critics

James Anderson

Absolutely pathetic.

President Johnson OKed the bombing of neutral Cambodia and Laos an act which eventually caused the death of over a million people.

JFK had sex in the Whitehouse with various starlets (including Marylin Monroe -- the guy had taste)

GW Bush embroiled the west in a useless war in Iraq -- meltdown still in progress and body count still rising.

Hilary Clinton used a personal e-mail account -- shock horror has the girl got no morals! Is she fit to be president, how many innocents will die. Just what you'ed expect from a non Texan.,

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Storm in a K-Cup: My SHAME over the eco-monster I created, says coffee pod inventor

James Anderson

Re: Never made it to civilisation.

"Nestle" -- the Swiss food mega corp created/owns Nespresso. Nothing to do with the brown muck company "Nescafe" other than a common corporate parent.

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James Anderson

Re: Never made it to civilisation.

In the some parts UK metal containers must be "clean and empty" which is just too fiddly for the coffe pods.

Where I currently live in South East Asia things are not so much re-cycled as re-used so far nobody has found a use for used coffee pods. The K thingies look like they would be excellent for propagating seeds.

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James Anderson

Re: Never made it to civilisation.

Nespresso is completely different. The K thingies are just a pre-packed coffee grounds with a built in filter the actual coffee making process is the same as a drip filter.

Nespresso is a sealed container which plugs into a machine which forces steam and water under pressure through the capsule -- the same basic process as an espresso machine.

The whole shebang was developed by Nestle from scratch and was covered by an astonishing 1700 patents. Most of the patents have now expired which is why a whole bunch of compatible capsules have appeared on the market recently.

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James Anderson

Never made it to civilisation.

These thing are unheard of in Europe -- possibly because the result is only slightly less awful than the truly awful coffee US citizens slurp by the gallon.

Here in the civilized world we have Nespresso which really is an environmental disaster as the composite aluminium and custom plastics are prohibitively expensive to re-cycle.

But it makes for a really nice cup of coffee!

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So long, Lenovo, and no thanks for all the super-creepy Superfish

James Anderson

Re: Cue the ClassAction lawsuits in 3... 2... 1...

They are based in the Peoples Republic of China -- I doubt they have such a thing as shareholder lawsuits.

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Inside GOV.UK: 'CHAOS' and 'NIGHTMARE' as trendy Cabinet Office wrecked govt websites

James Anderson

Symptom of a much deeper problem.

One of Thatcher's many innovations was to rope in "volunteer"s from advertising agencies to design and manage her election campaign. These professional ad-slingers were richly rewarded as government spending on publicity increased twenty fold during her reign.

Messers Blair and Madelson were quick to see the benefits of this system. You get elected, you get invited to smart dinner parties and you get to chat with amusing well dressed people who went to the same schools as you did. They also extend the concept by giving "volunteer" marketing and media types plum jobs once they got elected.

The end result is we have a government and civil service that is entirely centered on image, spin and buzzwords; but totally incapable of dealing with reality.

And they wonder why a flake like Farage looks attractive to voters -- sadly he looks more capable than they do.

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IBM chasing ex-staffers for $20 payments

James Anderson

Along with:

Bristol Motors who licensed there aircraft engine designs to BMW and Kawasaki

AMAL carburetors who licensed the design of their carburetors to Mitsubishi

and almost any other large enterprise that could make something the Germans or Japanese could not make themselves.

WWII finished 69 years ago. It really is history.

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SAP unveils its biggest thing for 20 YEARS: Core suite with HANA

James Anderson

Re: little big data

Big Data as used by marketeers of say Hadoop usually refers to some number minimum number of Terabytes, You would not be considered a serious big data geek if your site had less than a Petabyte.

So "several GB" does not even begin to hack it.

Next they will be claiming these power guzzling (even when idle) machines have "green credentials

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James Anderson

little big data

I don't see how an in memory database like hana can qualify as big data when its restricted to the RAM in a single machine.

Gotta love an accounts package that's so inneficient it needs a custom in memory dB just to implement standard business practice.

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Obama's budget packs HUGE tax breaks for poor widdle tech giants

James Anderson

us steals foreign government taxes

These are taxes on profits made in other countries like Britain.

For instance had the greedy f***s in the city of London not sold Cadburies to Hershey's then Camaron and not Obama would be collecting the readies.

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A Bombe Called Christopher, or A Very Poor Imitation

James Anderson

Re: Yes It's terrible

At least the math in Cryptonomicon is correct, and, it is (intentionally) very funny in places.

It also puts a spotlight on the equally remarkable but unsung US reverse engineering of the Japanese crypto systems.

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‘Whatever happened to Vladimir Putin?’ and other crap New Year prophesies

James Anderson

Empirical evidence that Y2K was b*ll*cks.

The conmen^h^h^h^h^h^hmarketing at several major software companies were so concerned that their Y2K "solutions" were not selling at all well in Italy that they persuaded the State Department to make a high level Diplomatic approach to the Italian government.

The Italian politicos (probably realizing there would be no money to trouser themselves) politely ignoredthese approaches. Italian business continued to ignore the aforesaid salespeople, and, by Jan 1999 Italy had the lowest Y2K spend of any developed country (and lower than some underdeveloped ones).

The tragic consequence of this negligent behavior? Well the citizens of Milan got free tram rides for a couple of days while the ticket machines were being manually rebooted, and, that was about it.

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4.2 is the answer to life, the universe and the Internet of Everything

James Anderson

Re: Can you use bluetooth and Wi-Fi at the same time then?

The point is existing blue tooth devices stop working whenever there is any wi-fi activity in the vicinity.

Why do you think logitek et all use there own protocols for mice etc. It's because blue tooth just dods not work well enough.

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James Anderson

Can you use bluetooth and Wi-Fi at the same time then?

Perhaps they could also get it to work in the vicinity of a Wi-Fi connection.

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Lord Lucan, Murakami's Strange Library ... and a hitchhiker's guide to the Computing Universe

James Anderson

Re: Bugs

Hear hear -- the urban legend comes from the misinterpretation of an entry in Admiral Grace Hoppers diary where a moth was pinned to the page and labelled "the first real bug".

The moth in question had indeed managed to get itself fried by a relay and caused a long running program to crash. It was labelled a real bug to differentiate from all the previously encountered bugs which did not involve a real insect.

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UK computing museum starts reboot of 65-year-old EDSAC

James Anderson

LEO -- a valve based computer from 1950s superior to S360 a transitor based computer from the1960s.

I think not.

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Too 4K-ing expensive? Five full HD laptops for work and play

James Anderson

Lenovo Yoga

You should have mentioned the Yoga has many cpu options -- mine has a 2.0/2.5 GHz I7 that goes like stink.

I also upgraded to 8GB memory and added a second 250GB SSD.

A word of warning:- upgrading memory and adding an SSD is tricky. It involves ripping the keyboard of the machine (and I mean ripping its held down by dozens of little catches and double sided sticky tape -- think leg waxing!); disconnecting/ reconnecting some fiddly micro connectors. Refitting the keyboard takes several attempts before it seats properly.

So avoid an upgrade and ensure it comes with the spec. you want.

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AMD, Oracle sweep their glasses off the table, ARM wrestle Hadoop for the data center

James Anderson

Re: Linux market penetration

Its actually about 12% for all servers, and 30% for web facing servers.

Whats more interesting is that its about 50% for new systems, Windows Solaris etc. is fast becoming legacy.

It should also be noted that companies like Google source there own hardware and all that kit in their massive data centers do not show as "server market share".

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Was Nokia's Elop history's worst CEO?

James Anderson

The shop has a hundred phones all looking the same but slightly different ....

some cost $20 some cost $400.

Nokia was s****d long before ELOP took over because its product development department turned into a workfare scheme for mediocre designers.

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Cloud to kill off legacy apps, says Rackspace CEO Taylor Rhodes

James Anderson

Hardware renters don't get it

The most important thing about an application is how accurately the business rules and logic within it reflects the needs and requirements of the business it serves.

So I have an FX trading system written for a VAX in the nineties and ported at great expense to Solaris/C++ at the turn of the century which after years of tuning and augmentation serves the quirks and intricacies of my currency traders and does so at lightning speed.

So I am going to port all this to some monstrous JEE framework and run it on a timeshare complete with a "we reserve the right to change these terms and conditions with written notice" clause in the contract -- probably not!

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What’s the KEYBOARD SHORTCUT for Delete?! Look in a contextual menu, fool!

James Anderson

Re: Talking of 1-2-3

I have actually seen this in use and it worked just fine once the user got us to it.

The 3270 was effectively a text only web page and worked very much like a browser with java script turned off.

Incidentally I once installed some software in a branch office in Lisbon that was connected to London via Madrid on an absurdly cobbled up network.

It worked acceptably for the 3270 apps, but supporting my unix software remotely was bizarre. It echoed any command you typed at one character every two seconds. It was so distracting the only way to get anything done was NOT to look at the screen.

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YES, I have ridden the UNICORN: The Ubuntu Utopic unicorn

James Anderson

Re: so many versions

I was quite happy with Ubuntu -- until an upgrade to unity broke all me virtual machines.

Please everybody get behind Linux Mint -- it just works, and is workable by anyone who has used a computer in the past ten years.

There is a serious opportunity to make a dent in windows market share.

XP to Mint is far easier and less of a jolt than XP -> Windows 8 you can even use the same hardware.

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Video: Dyson unveils ROBOTIC TANK that hoovers while you're out

James Anderson

Re: 420 patent applications

bong, joint and chillum -- a little help for those of you who spent there time at unuversity reading books.

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