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* Posts by R Callan

122 posts • joined 28 Feb 2008

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Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!

R Callan

Re: Lack of integrated email/contacts/calendar?

Gmail is not google-Mail, but a mail, contacts and calender application optimised for the Gnome desktop. It also works well on KDE but there is a mail/calender for KDE called KMail. There many other suitable applications for Linux but the problem seems to be that too many people seem to equate computing with Microsoft (Windows etc.) We have therefore a mind-set of users, and possibly admins, that needs to be overcome before Linux is accepted on a commercial or industrial scale.

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We got behind the wheel of a Tesla S electric car. We didn't hate it

R Callan
Boffin

The problem that most people do not acknowledge with electric cars is:

When all cars are electric and no-one pays fuel (road) tax, how are the roads paid for? Is the assumption made that all electricity is used as automotive energy and then taxed at current automotive fuel rates to replace fuel taxes. People without cars might object to having their electricity bills quadruple.

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Snowden never blew a whistle, US spy boss claims

R Callan
Childcatcher

Re: WTF?

Yes, I've noticed that U.S. citizens can be, and are, executed in public and without trial, for the dreadful crime of being mentally disturbed in a public place.

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Snowden leak journo leaks next leak: NSA, GCHQ dying to snoop on your gadgets mid-flight

R Callan
Boffin

Re: I'm going to repeat a post I made on another forum; it has relevance.

- terrorism laws make the possession of *knowledge* an offence

This definition makes me, and my high school chemistry teacher, RIP, terrorists. I was taught how to make

1.. fuming nitric acid

2.. fuming sulphuric acid

3.. how to safely combine these chemicals with certain organic materials (such as cotton wool) to make organo-nitrates more commonly called high explosives.

Perhaps iI should turn myself in now.

p.s. perhaps a time will come when, just for fun, ordinary people will send each other encrypted messages to see if the recipient can decode them. I have devised one encryption method which I feel is nearly unbreakable as it is a variant of one time pads without the pads.

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Mosquitoes, Comets and Vampires: The de Havilland Museum

R Callan
Headmaster

Re: The Mossie

I think you would find that they tries and failed. The Focke/wulfe TA 154 Moskito fits the bill exactly, down to the purloining of the name.

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Kiwi inventor's court win rains on Apple's parade

R Callan

Re: DryPhone

Perhaps because New Zealand has a tradition of calling waterproof gear Dri, as in Swanndri. To have reversed the order and called it PhoneDri would have sounded ridiculous and possibly have upset the Swanny people.

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Steelie Neelie: EU biz can use YOUR private data WITHOUT PERMISSION

R Callan

Re: Not good enough, Mrs Kroes.

Or is that Arfur?

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Microsoft Australia calls fibre-to-the-premises 'best outcome' for NBN

R Callan
Thumb Up

So if MicroSoft wishes Australia to have fibre to the premises broadband then all they have to do is install it and offer it to everyone at a competitive price. MS is after-all the most important IT company in the world so it should be a mere rounding error to them. I hope Mr. Abbott takes them up on their kind offer and saves the long suffering Aussie taxpayer a very large fortune.

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Apple's top bean counter: New spaceship HQ won't emit 'one atom of carbon'

R Callan
WTF?

Excellent, a building that does not emit a single carbon atom. Now about those molecules that contain carbon

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Scottish leader splurged £20k appealing disclosure of EU membership legal bungle

R Callan
Happy

Re: The no campaign is grasping at straws here

If Scotland should gain independence from the United Kingdom, The United Kingdom ceases to exist. It was formed when Scotland took over England and combined the two kingdoms of Scotland and England into one united kingdom. (The earlier take over of England by Wales did not result in a united kingdom as Wales was a number of Principalities and not a kingdom).

Further, the expression Great Britain used in the meaning "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" could no longer be used as a large proportion of the island of Great Britain would not be included. This would hopefully invalidate all of the ridiculous treaties signed by "Great Britain" including the EU treaties allowing the independence of England, Wales and Northern Ireland from foreign domination (the first time from 24th March 1603).

All I can say is roll on Scottish independence and freedom for the English, Welsh and Northern Irish.

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THE TRUTH about beaver arse milk in your cakes: There's nothing vanilla about vanilla

R Callan
Joke

Re: Luwak coffee - a question

I must be a "good" vegetarian then. Everything I eat is of vegetable (plus fungal) origin, just that some of it is filtered through animals before i get it. I love cow filtered grass, but prefer to call it steak.

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Brit and Danish boffins propose NSA-proof crypto for cloud computing

R Callan
Happy

Re: Political Correctness Gone Mad

Umm not really. Paris was a real man when he ran off with Helen and started the Trojan war. The video you saw was of a very good impersonator.

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Volvo V60 Plug-in Hybrid: Eco, economy and diesel power

R Callan
Boffin

Re: How Much?

As an ex-Yorkshireman, if everyone was to only run their cars on coal (remember that 'leccy has to come from somewhere) who pays for the roads? The current major source of funding is fuel (read petrol) tax. In fact are the Pious types using the roads without paying at the moment.

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YouTube Wars: Microsoft cries foul as Windows Phone app pulled again

R Callan
Boffin

Pot, meet kettle, kettle meet pot.

So every coder in the world can make HTML5 uTube work, except MicroSoft and it has to be Googles fault. I vaguely remember a company called Lotus that complained about not getting API;s from MicroSoft, and proved it, but MIcroSoft went on their own merry way.

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No distro diva drama here: Penguinista favourite Debian turns 20

R Callan
Happy

Re: Different linuxes for dirrerent purposes

""Windows for when I need to play Solitaire.""

kPatience works fine on my Mepis (Debian based) machine and it gives me far more choices.

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Larry Ellison: Google is ABSOLUTELY EVIL, but NSA is ESSENTIAL

R Callan
Flame

Re: He actually said that ?

I would rephrase the question as "He has heard of Obama hasn't he?"

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Wake up, Linux hippies: No one 'morally obligated' to give back

R Callan
Boffin

But

It's the narrowest end of a microscope.

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Panorama stalks alleged stalker's twin brother

R Callan
Boffin

Allo Allo --- wots all this then

But that was perfectly alright as they were both Nancy boys

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Zero-day backdoors to be left unplugged on Patch Tuesday

R Callan
Thumb Up

I really like

how MS Windows is posted as Malware :<)

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Doctor Who to marry Doctor Who's daughter

R Callan

Doctor

It may not really be in the spirit of things, but will they play "Talking 'bout my generation" at the ceremony?

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Massive new US spy airship 'could be used to carry big cargoes'

R Callan
Boffin

I'm confused (again)

So these airships can only land by using upward thrust from the engines as they are heavier than the bouyancy of the gas bag. I presume that having landed that then the engines are put into either no up thrust or down thrust to maximise the negative bouyancy. You then claim that the weight penalty of a compression system would be excessive, but why not use the drive engines as compressors, seeing as how they are not needed for lift when the airship is on the ground? This is easily done by using one bank of the V8 as an engine to drive the other bank as a compressor. Half of a 4 l engine running at 3000 rpm will compress at least 3000 litres of gas to 150 psi per minute, 4 engines will compress 12000 litres/min.

The next problem is the weight of the storage system. No problem at all as soon as one stops thinking about dedicated and heavy cylinders. The floor of the cargo deck needs to be strong enough to handle the cargo, and the lightest way of getting the strength is to use extruded box section alloy. Connect all of the box sections together and use that as your storage "cylinder". Compression and storage of excess He for practically no weight penalty.

It just requires a little thinking outside of the norm.

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Linux bug bestows attackers with 'superuser' powers

R Callan
Happy

Phew

I'm safe! Still using 2.6.27 kernal.

This seems to be more a symptom of "feature bloat" than anything else, that only affects those on the bleeding edge.

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Compromise turns Kaspersky site into malware hub

R Callan

Not Using Ubuntu 10.04

The use of an alternative OS is not the be all and end all, But, using an alternative to I.E. and then customising it to look unlike any other person's browser might help. If a screen pops up that is not in your choice of browser or look (colour schemes, furniture etc.), it might help to alert people to the fact that they might not be where they think they are. If I was to get a screen that was default Win XP IE I would be very amused.

Disclaimer: I use a distro of Linux (not xBuntu) usually with FF that has been customised to my liking.

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iPhone, BlackBerry, Droid: purveyors of pestilence

R Callan
Boffin

Minor nit

Coliforms (faecal or otherwise) are Enterobacteriaceae. Most Enterobacteriaceae are harmless in the gastro-intestinal tract, the major exceptions being Shigella and Salmonella and some Escherichia Coli which have been conjugated with Shigella.

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New Euro multicopter aims bitchslap at American X2, V-22

R Callan
WTF?

Title? I'd like a Dukedom [sic] please.

The more things change the more they stay the same. The good old Fairey Rotodyne of 1957 would outdo any of these modern super-choppers in every respect except speed, and that could have been improved with a more aerodynamic shape plus more powerful engines. Perhaps someone should dust off the old plans and make a killing (financial of course).

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Perseid meteors 'thrill star-gazers'

R Callan
WTF?

ISS times

And those times are valid for where?

El Reg is a Pommy site so they are GMT (BST?) times, or as NASA is a US organisation they are one of how many US times? Of course, I'm a Kiwi resident Pom so perhaps they refer to GMT-12 hours.

Confused? So was I.

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Indonesia flips over internet rock star smut clips

R Callan
Boffin

Holly hocks in the pocket

Ariel was a judeo-christian archangel somewhat before the Bard used the name. Perhaps that explains why this mozzy nutcase is so offended?

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Patchy Windows patching leaves users insecure

R Callan
Thumb Down

Patch pain

**"The core of this patching issue is that the software industry has, so far, failed to come up with a unified patching solution that can help home users on a large scale; that is, encompassing all software programs." Secunia**

Except for Synaptic and Yum and Yast and ???? querying repositories. Could these people not remember that there are solutions to most problems available, even if it involves looking outside the windows.

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Hull Daily Mail exposes depraved local porncoder

R Callan
Boffin

Old Yorkshire saying

From Hull, Hell and Halifax may the good Lord deliver us. Note how Hull precedes Hell.

I think that the writers for this rag may be a bit wet behind the ears, but then the Hull is strictly speaking a river.

p.s. How can the East Riding still exist, i.e. be a third of a non-existent county?

Expat from the West Riding, from the days when Yorkshire (no qualifications) did exist.

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Climategate hits Westminster: MPs spring a surprise

R Callan
FAIL

Huh! Doh!

***It's wrong anyway - NASA have 2005, 1998, 2002, 2003 and 2004 (in that order) as the warmest years on record,***

NASA of course have records that go all the way back to the Roman Warm Period? Um, no, just for a few of the most recent years. Even the CET record only goes back 260 years, right into the depths of the Little Ice Age. By quoting NASA you are cherry picking as much as the original comment, but you are also arguing from authority which is a common fallacy.

***The MWP was not warmer than the current period, it was drier and it was a localised effect.***

If you can deign to read a "sceptical" site, may I suggest you check out http://www.co2science.org/data/timemap/mwpmap.html to see the studies regarding the MWP. Links are included to at least abstracts of the papers. It looks pretty global to me.

***Sea ice in the Arctic is thinning and diminishing,***

http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2009/06/16/historic-variation-in-arctic-ice-tony-b/ gives a nice overview of historic records. It again may be best to follow the links to the original documents whenever possible. It appears as though the recent ice loss in the Arctic is not unusual or unprecedented.

***So the ice in the Himalayas isn't going as fast as one report says. But the evidence is clear, the vast majority of Himalayan glaciers are retreating.***

A quick search on Himalayan Glacier Retreat and ignoring the IPCC reports but only taking independent specialist reports suggests that although the glaciers may have been retreating since 1850 (about the end of the Little Ice Age) there generally is consensus that there is insufficient evidence to make a statement one way or the other.

***Yes the climate has always changed, but its rarely been changing as fast as it is now in human history***

Implicit in this statement is that climate has previously changed as fast as it is now (assuming that the observed change is not due to some artifact). The question becomes "what caused these obviously non-human climate changes in the past, and why is the present change necessarily human-caused? Without valid answers all we can state is that present climate change is not distinguishable from other natural climate change.

Science is not about taking an hypothesis and assuming it to be true, but formulating the hypothesis and the trying to disprove it. Failure to disprove the hypothesis strengthens the supposition that it is "correct", but it is still susceptible to being disproved at any time. An hypothesis cannot be "proved" but can be disproved with one contrary observation.

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Gay site says bank shut account over 'objectionable' blog

R Callan
Pint

Titles?

I have a vague memory of some famous Englishman, who had an American mother, making the comment "Two peoples separated by a common language. If anyone should know I expect he would. Now who was he? Oh, the younger son of the Duke of Marlborough, the Honourable Right Honourable Sir Winston Churchill. 'Ad a luv'ly way wiv words, ahr Winny.

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US word czars unfriend shovel-ready toxic assets

R Callan
Grenade

Dear sir,

You may be able to spell the word "furor" but I fail to see why you are making such a furore over it. You do, of course, realise that the terminal "e" in furore is pronounced, or do you?

I do however agree that the expression "step up" with or without the addition of "to the plate" should be banned forthwith. All English speakers know that the expression should be "walk to the middle" or "take guard" (please note the "u").

Also to be banned:

All references to American field wrestling with a ball somewhere as "football".

The naming of the ultimate letter of the alphabet as 'zeee". It is of course "zed". There are already too many letters ?ee without adding more and creating greater confusion.

p.s. can this funny looking device be exchanged for a classic Mills 36 grenade, this is of course an English site.

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Nuke-bunker-nobbling US megabomb delayed

R Callan
Headmaster

A couple of minor problems

"Tirpitz" was disabled and finally sunk with Tallboys not Grandslams.

A "sortie" is one flight by one aircraft.

Because "Tirpitz" was in a remote and distant fjord it was easily protected by Freya (early warning radar) and smoke screens. If the target could not be seen due to smoke it was very difficult to hit. The critical damage that caused it to be transfered from Assenfjord to Tromso was caused by "I think that's the target so here's one for luck" bombing. One hit on the bow and two near misses caused irreparable damage. Most of the aircraft on the raid returned to Yagodnik in Russia with the bombs still on board. (They were too expensive and took too long to make to be jettisoned when they were not dropped on target.)

Bombing with Grandslams, usually against viaducts and similar civil engineering works, was not intended to hit the target, but to near miss it and let the seismic effects do the required damage.

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Doing the maths on Copenhagen

R Callan

re debate

Might I suggest you contact Brenchley, he's been trying for years to get a debate, particularly with Mr. Gore, without success. As he always says, do not believe anything anyone says especially him, but go to the data and make up your own mind. There is on YouTube a video of him talking to a Norwegian Greenpeace/warmist supporter outside a conference in Berlin. It gives a good example of the difference between "believers" and "sceptics".

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R Callan
FAIL

Absolute codswallop!

Might I suggest that you engage brain before opening mouth. There is more and more research coming out, both peer reviewed and not (disregarding that the peer review system has been seriously abused), that the data provided via CRU and IPCC and the "consensus" opinion arising from it is wrong. It has been generated through politics and not science. Whenever rank amateurs investigate critical details the doubts multiply until they exceed any reasonable doubt.

Examples:

The US climate records are claimed to be the worlds best, but their measuring stations fail the minimum standard in 89% of cases, merely for siting. They do not adequately account fot Urban heat Island effect, but "adjustments" are made that always give a rise in temperature that raw data ( if available) does not. Upward adjustments without adequate explanation have also occured in Australia and New Zealand and these adjustments account for all of the claimed temperature rise in the stations investigated. In fact it was pointed out in a paper published in 1980 that NZ data was not suitable for long term monitoring or for temperature trend analysis.

The infamous Mann "hockey stick" graph was invalidated by McIntyre and McKitrick in 2003 but is still often seen, including in IPCC publications and presentations. The Medieval Warm Period which was warmer than today definitely existed otherwise how were grapes grown in Northumbria, Greenland and Newfoundland?

The Briffa tree ring analysis from Yamal, Siberia has been shown to depend upon cherry picking of data and ignoring the majority of the data points, and even then *one* tree skewed the results towards the desired end. If either this tree was excluded or all of the others were included then the temperature series changed character completely. There was also the infamous "Mann 'Nature' trick" of not including in the graph data that did not conform to the required result and hoping that it would not be noticed in the spaghetti graph.

I could go on but enough is enough but the present warming trend, assuming that it is still with us as there has been no warming for 9 years, cannot be put down to anthropogenic causes as both temperature rise and rate of rise are not uncommon in recent geological history.

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'Steve Jobs' repeals AT&T iPhone prank

R Callan

Titular title

The only thing resembling a joke regarding Fake "Steve" a.k.a. Dan Lyings a.k.a. Dan Lyons is Lyons himself. If he was to follow the advice in the BG's song "I Started a Joke" , either physically or metaphorically, then he would do the world a service ---- finally.

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Soot warming 'maybe bigger than greenhouse gases' - NASA

R Callan
Boffin

North v South glaciers.

There has been a lot of fearmongering here in NZ regarding the retreat of our glaciers, and it has been put down to "Global Warming". There is no doubt that the planet has been warming for the last 150 years, but that is due to us coming out of the "Little Ice Age". The size of glaciers is due primarily to snow fall, not temperature per se, but why the snowfall has reduced, and since when,

seeing that the mountains are in the "roaring 40s" I would not like to hazard a guess.

p.s. the mountains in question are quite high, there are 223 named mountains exceeding 7,500 ft (6,750 metres) in height, plus a number of unnamed ones in a range approx 500 miles in length.

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R Callan

Sea level change

Since the end of the last ice age, about 10,000 years, the Earth's oceans have risen 400 feet or ~125 metres. I calculate this to be an average of 125mm/century or 3 times the 40 mm/century that the warmists are predicting. There is in fact evidence that the oceans have dropped (~ 300mm) in recent times due to greater evaporation, which ends up as snow on the Great Southern Continent.

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'We must all stop washing to save the planet'

R Callan
Boffin

Are you missing something? Probably yes.

Have you seen the results of a survey regarding the quality of US monitoring stations, reputedly the worlds best system? Only 3% of the stations meet the best standard and 8% the second. Only stations meeting these standards can be considered to produce valid results. 54% of the stations do not meet the worst standard, where observations are expected to differ from reality by as much as 5K , but by an unknown and variable amount.

Have you seen the results from a replotting of the temperature records from Darwin, Australia. The raw data gives no or possibly a slight reduction in temperatures since the station opened in the 19th century. The official "homogenised" data shows an increase of (from memory) 8K since 1941.

Note: these are only 2 examples of many independent research projects that can be found.

If simple people can come up with totally different results from the same data as the "Climatologists", and the measurements do not appear to be reliable for "the worlds best system" how can you say that this is "one of most researched, debated areas of science"? This is particularly so with inferences from the e-mails that the somewhat incestuous group of climatologists have done everything in their power to stifle checking of their data, results and conclusions even to censoring the "deniers". Incidentally a true scientist is virtually by definition a sceptic as that scientist knows that the "truth" is only what has not yet been shown to be untrue, and the "truth" is only demonstrated by repeated and independent failures to demonstrate any untruth. Science is never settled and consensus has no place in science. Advances are always produced by an individual who comes up with a concept that is different to the current perceived (consensus) wisdom.

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Google chief: Only miscreants worry about net privacy

R Callan
Thumb Down

Not only am I not in the US

but I presume that Gooooooogle is conforming to The Privacy Act 1993. After all, we are all obliged to obey the "law", ignorance is no excuse. Herr Gauleiter Schmidt can find it with his own search engine to find the act.

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NHS IT spree faces cutbacks

R Callan

If "the NHS "could not function""

how has it functioned in the many years since its inception without IT systems?

On a personal note, my very first job on leaving school was in the local regional hospital (not in the U.K.), which had approx 100 beds. It offered all of the services one would expect, but not the specialised ones, such as oncology. The hospital also performed all the lab. tests and x-rays for the GPs up to 20 miles around. Total admin staff (remember this is pre-computers) 11 people!

The hospital is still about the same size but even though fully computerised (if you can call it that as they use MS systems) the admin. has grown to over 150 people! It's so bad that they took over the nurses residence and turned that into offices. Every department now has substantial admin staffs of their own instead of just the receptionist/secretary that some had if the head of dept. did not do his.her own office work.

Expanding IT/Admin is merely following Parkinson's (?) Law. The only answer is to reurn every 10 years to the staffing levels of 10 years previously, not throw other peoples money at a non-existent problem.

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US eyes speedy reviews for 'green' patents

R Callan
Joke

Perpetual motion machines

The only approximate perpetual motion is the universe. I wonder? If I can patent the universe in the States then all Usians owe me a fortune for using my invention.

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VW unveils slippery four-seat hybrid

R Callan

Nope, too heavy

My first car, a 2 door 4 seater weighed 800 pounds. It may have been an even then ancient '36 A7 Ruby but surely things have, in some respects, gone backwards in the past 80 odd years.

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North England to replace satanic mills with iPhone app factories

R Callan
Grenade

@Shaggy & AC

As any Yorkshireman knows Illkla Moor is in the West Riding of Yorkshire. That's what it was when I was born a little south and east of Illkley and attempts by the toffee nosed southerners to minimise and denigrate the heartland of England should be fought against at all costs.

Incidentally, a bar is a gate or gatehouse. York has some fine examples built into the walls. They were very useful for displaying the heads of non-Yorkshire troublemakers. Perhaps the practice could be reinstated?

p.s. could the grenade symbol be changed to a good old-fashioned Mills bomb? These funny yankee things don't really match with a .uk domain

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Boffins boast newfangled rootkit blocker

R Callan
FAIL

Ummmm

If this is a Microsoft initiative why did they not target the ability of the most common OS family to withstand root-kit attacks? Instead they used an uncommon OS that is often run by the more computer savvy.

If they had run this demonstration on all versions of MS Windows in regular use then people would take a greater degree of interest. As it stands, the implication is that Ubuntu, and other Linux OSs, are the common target of root-kits.

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Today marks 'least productive' day of year

R Callan
Happy

Title?

As Monday* was Labour Day, what do you expect?

*Down here in NZ anyway. Don't you love public holidays?

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Microsoft's Windows 7 buy early plan builds to climax

R Callan
Boffin

Also

Do all of those Blista machines with their upgrade rights to 7 each count as 2 licences? That must make some difference.

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NZ town cans rabbit-chucking contest

R Callan
Thumb Down

Minor question

How could any rabbits be "humanely" killed during a pig hunting contest? As pig hunting in NZ is done with a pack of dogs that corner and hold the pig until the hunter arrives with a large knife, the bunnies could only be killed by dogs tearing them to pieces. That is decidedly u(i)nhuman(e).

I feel that this is just the first step in stopping pig hunting and letting another destructive animal continue wiping out native flora and fauna.

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Lloyds TSB's online banking system shows no love for Firefox

R Callan
FAIL

lloyds.com/any stupid people

I checked as you suggested using FF and Konq and noticed that the file extensions are .asp, meaning of course that they are using Microsoft. It does not bode well for their system security.

I also wonder how they take the recent recommendations from both sides of the Big pond that on-line banking should be done with non-installed OS's, as the live CD's that I have seen do not include either Exploder or Netscrape.

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Farmer fined for ignoring cow's 'psychological needs'

R Callan

I wonder

what would the animal welfare persons reaction would have been if the farmer had answered "Outdoors, where they belong". In many parts of the world farm animals only go indoors to:

Be milked, keeps the farmer dry and rain out of the milk

To be shorn, shearers hate the rain

To be slaughtered, health and safety and all that.

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