* Posts by Jason Bloomberg

1064 posts • joined 8 Mar 2008

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Your city's not smart if it's vulnerable, says hacker

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Insurance companies might want to hear this talk.

In Europe one would hope the EU could come up with some regulation insisting on security across the bloc and every government would comply with such regulation.

Of course, some see that as a bad thing in principle and will actively oppose regulation. Some even want to leave or opt-out of the EU as what may help society as a whole is often "bad for business" or imposes additional costs.

Governments seem to prefer to pay the cost of failure later than pay the cost for protection now. As long as failure doesn't happen on their watch they can blame others for their own failings.

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Transparency thrust sees Met police buying up to 30,000 bodycams

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Can't wait for...

Police officers can claim whatever they like but it is whether anyone believes them which is what really matters.

If society is not properly holding the police to account, willing to accept any flimsy excuse or lie from bent coppers, then that is a societal failing. Police can only exploit that when we let them.

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RAGING Google SLAPS naughty Chinese root cert kingpins CNNIC

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: over reaction?

I would guess Google saw an opportunity to grab them by the balls and seized their chance. It is always advantageous to hold a 'you do this and we'll do that, or we can leave things as they are now' position; the more someone wants something the more one can get in return.

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Google Glass NOT DEAD. We're just making it 'ready' says chief

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: something like glass has its applications

The notion of some sort of HUD or Enhanced Reality as we go about life has been around for a long time in movies, many saw it as cool and some thought it would be useful, so well done to Google having a crack at it in reality. You really don't know what works and what doesn't until you give it a trial.

The first attempts will never be perfect; you learn your lessons, move on, improve what works, rework or drop what doesn't. The assertions that Google had simply canned the project seemed unlikely to me, and they certainly never said that in their earlier announcements. User trial done, experiences logged, on to Phase II, is how I read it.

I imagine the 'Glasshole hate' came as a bit of a surprise for those who did not see that coming but that wasn't really surprising when people get beaten up for their skin colour, race, clothing and other lifestyle choices. I don't know how, or even if, Google can address that hate of Glassholes, or to what extent it is their responsibility to have to. Perhaps they should just print "Je Suis Charlie" across the head band?

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Taylor Swift snaps up EVEN MORE pr0n domain names

Jason Bloomberg
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Gimp

ITaughtTaylorSwiftHowToShoveAHamsterUpHerArse.com

Surely the whole "I Taught..." battle is a game of whack-a-mole with the lawyers having to be more perverse than everyone else to get in first and inevitably doomed to failure.

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$30 Landfill Android mobes are proof that capitalism ROCKS

Jason Bloomberg
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Alien

"Higher prices mean cheaper electricity for everyone"

Is it just me who feels they are being sold snake oil when reading these Worstall articles, are being bamboozled with smoke and mirrors and claims that 1+1=3 so long as you do the maths the right way?

I don't know why but I always have a suspicion that I am being taken for a ride but am not bright enough to know what ride that is. I am left thinking "if you say so" with a feeling of having been suckered into not seeing the trick being played. My gut feeling is there's some logical fallacy or similar buried in all of it but I just can't see where that is, and I don't have the energy or time to unravel it all.

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Internet Explorer LIVES ON, cackle sneaky Microsoft engineers

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Waiddaminnit!

Because what was true then must to be true now, nothing has or could have changed in the last decade?

The way I understood it, though it was a while ago, it came down to exactly what "IE" was. It was two parts if I remember rightly; the underlying gubbins which Windows itself and apps running on Windows used to do their things and a front-end which created a browser using those underlying gubbins. It was possible to remove the front-end but not the back end, so "IE" could not be fully removed without adverse consequences. It was thus 'integrated' into Windows, removing the big blue "e" wasn't enough to remove it.

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BT fined £800k over lax emergency text relay delay blunder

Jason Bloomberg
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I suppose the thought is that BT could pay the fine by taking a cut in profits, reducing share holder dividends or staff salaries, or buying a few less biscuits and biros, rather than just passing the fine on as increased charges to customers.

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Pi(e) Day of the Century is upon us! Time to celebrate 3/14/15 in style, surely?

Jason Bloomberg
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The American-centric universe

I had to laugh when I received an email from an American company promoting special offers for "International Pi Day".

"International" as in "World Series" I imagine.

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Well.That.Sucks: New rude dot-word sparks outrage

Jason Bloomberg
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Paris Hilton

Ahem

Couldn't resist.

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Attack of the Digital People: The BBC goes fully Bong

Jason Bloomberg
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Whose initiative?

It seems to me it is primarily a government aspiration to get people coding and developing. With the BBC in a position to deliver it would be rather remiss of them not to jump on that bandwagon to demonstrate the benefits of public broadcasting.

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Bulk interception is NOT mass surveillance, says parliamentary committee

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Bulk interception of net traffic is not mass surveillance...

Mass collection is not mass surveillance and just saying the two are the same won't cause the government or the courts to believe they are.

I have said before that it's no good complaining about mass surveillance if we want to stop mass collection; the government will otherwise simply continue to say they don't do mass surveillance while continuing mass collection.

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Should online pirates get the same sentences as offline ones?

Jason Bloomberg
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Facepalm

Re: When is theft not theft?

So copyright theft is only correctly named, if the 'pirate' can be shown to have deprived the owner of some revenue. If the 'pirate' would never have paid for the work anyway, he/she has not deprived the owner of anything and no theft has taken place.

In the real world it is pretty obvious to most people that having something which one could only legally have if paid for is theft.

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One does not simply ask the inventor of the WWW what he thinks about memes

Jason Bloomberg
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Not sure anyone can completely blame the Americans because postal addresses have traditionally followed the increasing size order; house, street, town, county, country.

For dates, the problem was multiple local standards making it hard to tell which standard was being used in any particular case. It may have been better for computer processing and sorting to have had gTLD first in URIs but at least there are no issues as to which standard is being used.

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MPs 'alarmed' by millions of mugshots on Brit cops' databases

Jason Bloomberg
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Black Helicopters

So what are you going to do?

Absolutely nothing like millions of others.

Not that there is a lot which anyone can do. At best one can vote in a party which will itself do what it wants. Half the people don't even see there is a problem because they have swallowed the kool-aid and see anyone protesting as the problem.

The best way to keep people oppressed is to have them oppress themselves and we've done a mighty fine job of complying so far. Anyone who doesn't is seen as some sort of dangerous radical which ensures it continues and keeps those who would be rightly radicalised quiet.

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HAPPY 20th Birthday MICROSOFT BOB

Jason Bloomberg
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MS Agent

MS Agent which evolved from Bob was a useful but obscure and rarely used tool, though more for good quality text to speech via SAPI than for the on-screen animated characters -- but those were admittedly fun to play to play with and easy to control through VB6.

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Chewier than a slice of Pi: MIPS Creator CI20 development board

Jason Bloomberg
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Community

Despite any issues and limitations with the Pi, it is the community which makes it a hands-down winner and drives up-take. I suspect serious competition in the hobbyist arena would only come from a $50 X86 system which ran a free and full desktop Windows and that is not likely to happen any time soon.

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Hated smart meters likely to be 'a costly failure' – MPs

Jason Bloomberg
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Like ID cards before it

I expect this plan will keep running forward until the electorate have had enough and vote in a different party which kills it dead. If there is such a party.

It seems there is very little "delivering what people want" these days; we are simply told what we will have to put up with. But I guess that's the problem with elected dictatorships which we accept as democracies.

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Apple design don Jony Ive: Build-your-own phone is BOLLOCKS

Jason Bloomberg
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FAIL

Sewing sequins on my Gucci handbag

A good designer will deliver something the majority of the target audience consider a good, stylish and solid product, perfectly serviceable and fit for purpose for most who buy it.

That doesn't mean the punter should not be able to tweak it to suit their own personal taste, nor does it give a designer a dictatorial right to criticise doing that or others who facilitate it.

I have heard similar from chefs who believe a meal should be exactly how it comes, no condiments or sauce can be added.

Bollocks to that; I'll do as I please.

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Raspberry Pi, meet face: You're probably NOT Blighty's biggest PC maker!

Jason Bloomberg
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There were many who correctly predicted a $35 computer would be far more successful than the Foundation expected it to be. Most of the first year supply problems were because the Foundation had failed to recognise that huge demand and had carried out no real market research.

It would be interesting to know how many of the five million sold are being used for education and how many are used otherwise, serving hobbyists or working as media players, but I guess that is hard to tell.

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Game of Moans: Sky coughs to BORKED set top box BALLS-UP

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: You couldn't make it up...

"and just for added pointlessness - give the cables a bit of a jiggle".

For my friends that does actually seem to be one of the solutions which works for their problems! Admittedly it seems to need a full network disconnect and reconnect rather than a mere jiggle which is what had me thinking it may be a networking issue.

That may just be coincidence but there does seem to be some correlation between 'jiggling cables' and things working again for a while.

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Jason Bloomberg
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Re: I am one of those victims...

I am not a victim but I have friends who are. They will be pleased if it is not their out of warranty box which needs repairing or replacing as they have been led to believe.

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£100 MILLION poured down drain on failed UK.gov IT projects - in just ONE YEAR

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: As a new start up...

The trick at the place I worked seemed to be to offer the moon on a plate so long as they can spec it. Keep them forever engaged in creating and adjusting the spec and the money keeps rolling in.

If customers do push for deliverables those come exactly as specified, which is rarely what they wanted or needed. Then it's back to the office to discuss how much changing the spec will cost.

They won't repeat that mistake in a hurry so next project they end up trapped in the never ending specification and planning stage paying ongoing costs without any roll-out ever being on the horizon. Just when they think it's done we can reveal an obvious flaw we forgot to mention earlier and around it goes again.

We help them through it, they think we are their bestest friends in wanting them to get things right, so they keep coming back for more of the same

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Google cuts Microsoft and pals some slack in zero-day vuln crusade – an extra 14 days tops

Jason Bloomberg
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Devil

Staggered release would be better

The problem is in having rigidly fixed periods after which everything about a flaw is dumped, including the exploit code.

It doesn't have to be that way but Google is choosing to do it that way and it seems done more to damage their rivals and harm users than to protect them. I can understand Google might like everyone to dance to their tune but blackmail, threat and exposing people to risk is not the best means of applying pressure.

I accept public notification as a means of kicking the lethargic and could-not-care-less into action but any release, particularly of exploit code, should be tempered by the damage done in doing that.

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ATTENTION SETI scientists! It's TOO LATE: ALIENS will ATTACK in 2049

Jason Bloomberg
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Alien

Incomming

"Turn that fucking racket off. Sheesh!"

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Twin Adam Sandlers shake El Reg's movie unwatchablathon team

Jason Bloomberg
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Apex, Jump Cut, Quantum Apocalypse, Robotropolis, TNT Jackson

And you think you have suffered???

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DARPA: We KNOW WHO YOU ARE... by the WAY you MOVE your MOUSE

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Typical

It is not so much remembering my passwords I have difficulty with but remembering which password goes with what.

I also have my head cluttered with remembered passwords which I no longer use which makes it even harder.

And, of course, there are loads of passwords I should remember but have forgotten because I don't use them often enough to reinforce those memories. Luckily someone invented the sticky label.

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'YOUTUBE is EVIL': Somebody had a tape running, Google...

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: The new man

People go where their friends go, as relayed by IM, FB, word of mouth.

That's the truth of it. After all, that's how Google and YouTube got so big in the first place.

One niche artist won't make much of a difference other than to highlight the problem but if some major artists - and particularly record labels - take a stand then their fans are very likely to go with them.

The danger of being evil while pretending not to be is that, if you bite the hand that feeds too hard, those being milked just might realise and take exception to that.

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2015: The year of MAD TV science, but who can keep up?

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: UMC?

I've got a UMC TV. I believe it's another branding for Technika and a couple of other household names.

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Polish chap builds computer into a mouse

Jason Bloomberg
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Nefarious use

From the promo video it seems a prime use is sneaking your own PC into work where own PCs are prohibited.

I am struggling to tell if it's a joke or a genuine product.

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Microsoft wants LAMP for wireless mobe charger

Jason Bloomberg
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Mushroom

Nuclear batteries

^ That's all we need. Batteries which last a lifetime. Then we can forget all the problems of keeping them charged.

Of course there may be other things we then need to worry about.

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Kiss your Glass goodbye: Google mothballs techno-specs (for now)

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Great Idea bad market

Well it certainly brought out the haters; the people who like to beat up on nerds just for being nerds.

There is no doubt that the concept of Google glasses strayed into areas which people were not comfortable with but that in itself does not make them an entirely bad idea. Just look at the number of people who criticised the cost rather than what they were.

It will be interesting to see what lessons Google has learned from their initial deployment. It is not always possible to know what actual boundaries there are without pushing at them. Some ideas succeed and some fail. Google did get it wrong in some respects but I cannot criticise Google for testing the waters and having the courage to do so.

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GRENADE! Project Zero pops pin on ANOTHER WINDOWS 0-DAY

Jason Bloomberg
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Megaphone

Let battle begin

If Google think it's okay to drag Microsoft through the mire then it should be equally okay for Microsoft to do the same to Google. I think Google will find that they have more to lose than Microsoft.

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Should spectrum hog TV give up its seat for broadband? You tell us – EU

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: The point about Broadcast TV

Subscription free Sky and FreeSat offer reasonable alternatives to terrestrial broadcast so its loss would not mandate a move to online services. It's not a zero-cost change but neither was the switch to digital TV.

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iPhone addiction will RUIN YOUR LIFE – if only that were true

Jason Bloomberg
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Paris Hilton

People get frustrated by not being able to do what they would like to do and this causes physiological effects. Who would have guessed.

Next week: Adverse effects caused by a child screaming in public while its parents completely ignore it.

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NHS refused to pull 'unfit for purpose' Care.data leaflet

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Same old arrogance

It's only your personal data if it has your personal details on it.

It doesn't and wouldn't have.

A huge part of the problem was that it was not possible to tell if this was/is/would be true or not. It was very opaque as to what information was involved, who would have access to it, and what form it would take.

In particular it was not clear whether signing-up was advantageous or not, or whether not signing-up would compromise the care one might receive in future.

On the details provided it was impossible for anyone to make an informed decision as to what they should do.

Additionally it was opt-in by default with no easy way to opt-out. And once opted-in there was no way to opt-out later. As noted, many people were not even aware of the proposals and what they were being opted in to because they did not receive notification, though possibly through binning it as an anonymous junk-mailshot which it appeared to be.

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Dev put AWS keys on Github. Then BAD THINGS happened

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: What about pre-payment?

"Sorry, this site has been suspended because they didn't have enough credit in their account."

Except they don't have to put up a message of that kind. All they have to do is report the unavailability, not the reason why.

Even if pre-payment isn't desirable it would be reasonable enough to put a cap on things, trigger an authorisation request from the payer to keep the service running and incurring costs. That could be opt-out for those who want to take the risk.

Customers are going to demand things like that if Amazon stops refunding money for carelessness and mistakes.

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UK retailers in TABLET PRICE SLASH BONANZA

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: But Has Anyone Found something To Do With Them?

I don't own a tablet, couldn't see the point, but had to borrow one to set up a Chromecast so had a bit of a play.

It was great for watching videos and browsing the web but rather pointless when I have that Chromecast, TV and desktop, and when elsewhere I'd need a Wi-Fi connection which I wouldn't have. I could move my lists of DVDs and CDs off the e-reader and onto a tablet but don't really see much gain in doing so.

It's best use is as a remote for the Chromecast when the desktop is turned off but I haven't found a killer application which makes a tablet essential for me. Playing games is probably a good enough excuse to get a cheap tablet or for getting to grips with Android programming.

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Blind justice: Google lawsuit silences elected state prosecutor

Jason Bloomberg
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Facepalm

Cry me a river

The rich and powerful have always held trump cards over the small fry; threatening court action will shut most people up.

And, the end of all that hand-wringing, we find the case was thrown out, justice was done, no one was actually silenced.

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Kiwi hacker 'menace' pops home detention tracker cuffs

Jason Bloomberg
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WTF?

" Aluminium foil Faraday-cage attack"

That seems to suggest the "hack" involves some physical intervention; blocking signals from the ankle bracelet or whatever receives those.

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Uber surge pricing kicks in during Sydney siege

Jason Bloomberg
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Devil

"Mercenary"

That's putting it kindly. Anyone who seeks to selfishly profit from adversity is the lowest of the low in my book.

It is simply exploiting others' misfortune, and I bet they wouldn't be happy if they were themselves victims of that.

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El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: For anyone who cares....

the bloody huge image at the top is class="article_img". A little futzing with greasemonkey makes it go byebye

I'm a bit rusty with Greasemonkey but just killing the picture and the navigation bar made articles acceptable again. The front page is a bit trickier, still working on that.

It shouldn't be necessary on a well designed site.

Indeed, and, once forced to start killing things off, the temptation is to go the extra mile; remove the banner, the social media buttons, the sidebars, the 'read more' and 'whitepapers' for a completely uncluttered feel which suits the size of screen I have.

That may be good for how a reader wants things, but I am not sure how good it is for El Reg. But, at least I am still here, still a reader, and whilst inconvenienced and a little aggrieved with the change being at odds with what I like, I can now live with it.

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Jason Bloomberg
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FAIL

Those mouse-over pop-up menus are driving me nuts and the super-large photos are entirely pointless, add nothing to the stories. El Reg is unfortunately becoming just another dumbed-down user experience.

I don't have any belief things will change so it's time to tweak my Greasemonkey scripts to shape things into how I want them.

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The future looks bright: Prepare to be dazzled by HDR telly tech

Jason Bloomberg
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Re: Not convinced

Me neither; I much prefer a darker balance than 'full in-your-face brightness'. I suspect I am somewhat photophobic, as it appears 20% of the population may be, though not to the degree of inducing epilepsy or seizures.

Still, it should certainly make "My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding" dresses shine.

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Solar sandwich cooks at 40 per cent efficiency

Jason Bloomberg
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Childcatcher

Re: Photovoltaics is a one time, one way molecular erosion PARLOR TRICK !

And before the commentards wail 'safety' - Coal has killed more people then nuclear power.

I am not disagreeing with you but the nuclear naysayers will point to the potential for harm being far, far greater than coal or anything else.

No scientist worth their salt would ever say nuclear power is completely safe which always leaves open the possibility that it could all go catastrophically wrong. That fear of "could" ingrained in the paranoid is a near impossible hurdle to overcome; they simply always see the risk as too high.

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Kaspersky: That 2 years we took to warn you about Regin ? We had GOOD REASON

Jason Bloomberg
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How long is too long to have kept quiet?

We don't want AV and security companies crying wolf but somewhere between suspicion and absolute proof there would surely be some point at which it becomes reasonable to warn that something is afoot.

It is entirely reasonable to ask why we are only learning of this threat now and not sooner.

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What a pity: Rollout of hated UK smart meters delayed again

Jason Bloomberg
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A terrorist's wet dream

Just imagine having a means to re-flash the nation's smart meters, turning them off and leaving them that way. Just how long would it take to sort that mess out, and just what state would the country be in after just a few hours, let alone a week or more?

Yesterday it was reported Lenova had borked their own products with a forced firmware upgrade. Let's hope the leccy companies never do the same.

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Give nerds their own PRIVATE TRAIN CARRIAGES, say boffins

Jason Bloomberg
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Joke

Re: Yes, Give Them Their Own Carriage

+ Like

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Pebble: The brilliant stealth wearable Apple's Watch doesn't see coming

Jason Bloomberg
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Mushroom

The Smart Watch paradox

The problem of the Smart Watch is that for everything good it brings to the table there is some detracting feature which makes it worse than what we already have. For many there are too few gains for the inconvenience caused.

The ideal - always on, full and responsive colour display, easy interaction, months or years without charging, with replaceable batteries, allowing a user's choice of strap, and doing everything we want in a way we want it done - seems a long way off at the moment. And currently any improvement in one area seems to lead to something suffering elsewhere; better display but shorter battery life for example.

Battery capacity and having to recharge seems to be the main limiting factor at present and it's not clear how that will be resolved. Perhaps nuclear batteries?

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