* Posts by Nick Ryan

1487 posts • joined 10 Apr 2007

Amazon just wrote a TLS crypto library in only 6,000 lines of C code

Nick Ryan
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Re: I applaud this and hope it is clean. However we could have written this in Perl in 1 line.

Maybe you need more imagination? :) The lunatics at The International Obfuscated C Code Contest make this an artform. And a competion.

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Who wants a classic ThinkPad with whizzy new hardware? Lenovo would just love to know

Nick Ryan
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Re: I'm gonna get flamed for this...

Regarding tweeking the thinkpad ... no. Not unless they sorted out that FN+CTRL mess.

Having the stupid FN key in place of where on every other damn keyboard the CTRL key was the biggest single problem common to the old Lenovo keyboards. It made switching from one keyboard / system to another stupidly awkward because while you could get used to the dumb positioning of the FN key in place of the CTRL key, as soon as you switched to a normal keyboard layout you had to get used to it all over again. I frequently had to switch from thinkpad to normal system so this was a common problem. However as noted elsewhere, at least these could be swapped in the BIOS.

The other major dumb-ass "innovation" was the navigation "back" and "forward" keys sited in such a spot where it was all too easy to mis-press them or to accidentally press them in place of a normal navigation key such as cursor or Page Up / Page Down. I never found a software fix for these cursed keys (the Lenovo remapping tool refused to remap these) so I just popped the keys out and left a hole in the keyboard.

At least there was an option where the function keys weren't mapped to "special" functions by default and to use the function key as a function key you had to press FN and the function key. Oops.. sent the system into hibernate. Again. All I wanted to do was refresh the page...

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Yahoo! displaces Ask in Oracle's Java update crapware parade

Nick Ryan
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Maybe there's some money to be made from installing ****ing useless and pointless toolbars that do nothing other than slow down the browser and make it crash more often?

Other than that... yeah. Almost as relevant as AOL.

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Microsoft U-turns on 'free' Windows 10 upgrade promise for ALL previewers

Nick Ryan
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Re: Guessing games

Is this regarding the MSA business for Win 10 or just Microsoft licensing in general?

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Assange™ celebrates third year in Ecuadorian embassy broom closet

Nick Ryan
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What is Ecuador getting from this?

Just a thought... Ecuador isn't likely to be doing this purely from a sense of international justice or human interest, so what are they getting, or likely to be getting from this? It's not going to be especially expensive for Ecuador to home them in their embassy, because realistically he's less than a drain than a convicted criminal in a jail and he just has food, clothing and likely a few pieces of tech. However this compares very spectacularly with the reported millions "wasted" on posting police and security around the Ecuadorian embassy 24x7 just in case he decides to try and leave or an attempt is made to smuggle him out.

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Would EU exit 'stuff' the UK? Tech policy boss gets diplomatic

Nick Ryan
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Re: A lack

If the governments want a better skilled population, do you think it would be a good idea if they invested in a better skilled population?

Don't be silly. Education should be democratised so any school leaving fuckwit can, and should be encouraged, almost forced, to go to University. It doesn't have anything to do with them being academically capable of it, just as long as the "pass" grades have been manipulated enough that a failing academic system can be statistically proven(*) to be producing better, or at the very least more qualified, students. These bright stars of the future can then join universities up and down the country dragging the level of learning down to such a level that the entire first year of many courses is trying to both teach elementary level aspects of the course that should have been taught at GCSE level and re-programming students to think for themselves and not to just be exam-passing automatons who can't think outside of the narrow range of questions that they'll be guaranteed to be in a paper. Naturally this level of "enhanced" university tuition is expensive and therefore the university grants should be cut, universities allowed to charge "up to" a trivial level to make up for the greater level of cuts they've suffered and the process is complete.

But this is all for the greater good, university level education should be available for everyone, not just the academically gifted. (While the premise that university level education should be available for everyone that is academically gifted and not just those with the cash to fund their education is a good one, somewhere along the line the entire process has gone horribly, horribly, wrong).

/rant :)

(*) http://www.amazon.co.uk/How-Lie-Statistics-Penguin-Business/dp/0140136290

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Nick Ryan
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French is the official language of the UN. It's used in the public sessions.

However whenever anything useful is discussed, e.g. in the side rooms, it's always in English. Even the French speak English in these side meetings, although they might grumble about it. It's nothing against French as a language, just that when you need to find a common language and the only one in common is English that's what gets spoken.

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It's curtains for you, copper: IBM boffins push the LIGHT FANTASTIC

Nick Ryan
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Re: The real issue is how cheap you can make it

The difference may be trivial but I thought that the wavelength had an effect on the data transferable on fibre therefore four different wavelengths down one fibre would support slightly different throughputs?

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Could you jam optical computers ..

...and if you find yourself with too much black paint you could always paint a ship black. And then the insides black. And then all the controls and screens black. What could possibly go wrong? (Intergalactic rock stars aside of course)

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Silicon versus GaAs

Being a bit behind the head hurty field of nanoscale circuitry... isn't one of the advantages of GaAs that the circuits can be made smaller and use less power than the equivalent silicon based circuitry.

On the other hand, the production techniques for GaAs really aren't anywhere near the level of refinenent of silicon. Possibly because it's more expensive to start off with and doesn't get any cheaper at any point.

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HP haters: Get ready to rage against THE MACHINE 'next year'

Nick Ryan
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Initially I was quite (or very) skeptical when I read about this new computing platform. However the way the design has been rotated around to be memory rather than CPU centric is rather clever and really could lend itself to some computing tasks very well. I suspect that even if it works, at first it will be a very niche product but it should scale down as well as up and a small version of it could also be equally innovative. In some ways systems are getting closer to this with multiple core processors, multiple processors (e.g. one low power, one high power) and general purpose GPU systems with hundreds of parallel processors.

I'd be testing it with DRAM in exactly that way if the core memory tech wasn't ready yet. Good modular design will help the thing in the long run anyway.

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Sysadmins rebel over GUI-free install for Windows Server 2016

Nick Ryan
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Re: If only IBM had included Rexx at the start

Very capable, very extendable and pretty damn simple to use. Pretty simple to expose Rexx interfaces as well in your applications which allows some very clever automation between applications.

These days though it probably feels like it has a few deficiencies compared to other scripting systems.

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Couple sues estate agent who sold them her mum's snake-infested house

Nick Ryan
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Re: Inspections dont work in the UK

Some of us in the UK realized that a while ago and employ a proper structural engineer, the cost is not much more than a bog standard 'survey'

Exactly. I found local surveyors that would deal directly and produce a "limited" guarantee report starting around £800. The "limited" side came from them stating that they would not damage the property while performing the checks but would check everything they could otherwise and clearly state any concerns that they might have if they couldn't check things but had concerns.

Sending somebody into a house you don't own to knock holes in it isn't the most welcome approach. But a good survey will pick up things that while not serious are useful to know anyway, such as misfitting or broken back boxes for electrical sockets. Not a big deal, I could replace those myself with little effort but the kind of thing that's useful to know in advance before you let little children loose.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Inspections dont work in the UK

These homebuyer surveys are utterly useless, the "it's not our fault regardless" disclaimers aside.

When I sold my last house the inspector came up with all kinds of crap for the potential buyer such as "inadequate underfloor ventilation" for a solid floor or "signs of woodworm" where the timbers were around 300 years old and had been pickled in all manner of chemicals on a few recent-ish occasions. When 300 years old, most wood will have some form of "sign of woodworm".

The real gem was the "energy efficiency" savings section of the report that couldn't find any sign of cavity wall insulation for a single brick rendered wall or that replacing the light bulbs with "energy saving" bulbs would save energy where if the inspector knew anything he'd have spotted that there was just a single incandescent bulb on an external security light and every other light in the house was LED.

Luckily the buyer had the sense to run his concerns past me and he personally came and looked at things as well. No 200 year old cottage is going to be perfect or meet the latest new house build standards but that was what they were testing things against.

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

Nick Ryan
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Re: Will it be like my phone?

And have several apps running in the background for no apparent reason or utility (to me).

No, it'll be like previous versions of windows where there will be lots of apps running in the background for no apparent reason or utility (to you).

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Nick Ryan
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Re: A novel idea?

Also, only one of the options can be the default

Which is just the start of the trouble with Microsoft... when some braindead "User eXperience" drone decided that hiding all the keyboard shortcuts by default, enabling intrusive animations(*) and effects by default or at one point (when Active Desktop was the latest things to push), hiding all the bloody desktop icons by default. The particularly dumb stupidity is hiding all the notification area icons by default which when coupled with a retarted timer which starts when the application with a notification area icon first thinks about showing a notification, not when the OS gets round to showing, the notification shows for about 10ms or often just long enough for you to notice it but not to get the mouse there in time and by then the icon has disappeared (because that's "helpful") so you're not even sure which application produced the notification in the first place. Twats.

* I have nothing against animations in a GUI, just so long as they don't make the process of using the interface considerably slower than without them. Little more annoying than having a really fast PC then have the use of it slow to a crawl because every damn window and menu "needs" to animate in and out at an annoyingly slow speed.

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Bank: Without software mojo, Android OEMs are doomed to 'implode'

Nick Ryan
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Re: simple solution

Close, but in my opinion the problem is more likely that Samsung's software is so utterly appalling that it's unmaintainable in any way, shape or form. This isn't just Samsung's take on standard apps (uninstallable), but their drivers and in particular the worst culprit is Kies. There is not a single redeeming component or feature in Kies, the entire experience is painful at best and just flawed or broken as a baseline.

Samsung are / were in an ideal position to supply real quality software for their phones, genuinely improving the stock android experience (but optionally), adding value with their own applications. However instead we have applications that require inexplicable permissions, are uninstallable or unstoppable and other general crud supplied as "system components" where they plainly aren't.

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Hardcore creationist finds 60-million-year-old fossils in backyard ... 'No, it hasn’t changed my mind about the Bible'

Nick Ryan
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Re: Amazing!

...and crocodiles. and sharks. and coelacanths. However these could be explained away as swimming in water to which some great flood would likely not have made the worst difference.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Evidence.

The intriguing thing about the (Western) European recovery was that much of the recovery was fuelled by the rather smarter and more developed Arab states that preserved an enormous amount of ancient knowledge but also continued learning and experimenting as well. For example, we wouldn't have our fabulous cathedrals and other buildings from that time without the Arab knowledge and skills of building.

As for the "Holy Roman Empire"; many of the traditions and customs from it around the Emperor still exist but they are now associated with the Roman Catholic church and the Pope. These are most noticeable in the election of a new pope and the rituals and customs that surround this. Embrace. Extend. Absorb. A pretty traditional business model and it's worked exceptionally well for christianity which is an intriguing mix of a lot of older beliefs.

When it comes to the book of genesis, even I was taught (by a priest) that it was a later book added to the bible and should only be taken figuratively rather than as, erm, "bible"! Which raises quite a few issues with the whole bible... it's meant to be "god's word", except that it's a book written by people for people, translated from language to language which are bad enough. For example have somebody who's half competent with maps draw the progression of the Israelites out of Egypt and you immediate spot the problems - except that these can't be there because the bible is bible and is therefore utterly and totally infallable. And this is before you know about the arguments about which books actually comprise the bible, particularly which books have been removed from the bible and that this was a human act rather than some act of a divine entity. The rejected books of the bible are sometimes quite an intriguing read and it's evident why many have been cut as some of them are frankly batshit insane.

...not sure where the original of this comes from, but: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BssFvtWCMAA1WQ8.jpg

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Don't panic as Server 2003 rushes towards end of life

Nick Ryan
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Re: They can have my 2003 SBS.....

...because the likelihood of being able to successfully upgrade from 2003 SBS to anything else is so close to zero as to be a mere rounding error in infinity.

Luckily I no longer have any involvement in any of the train wrecks that still use 2003 SBS. Don't get me wrong, it was a fantastic value product and while it had some quite lunatic restrictions was still rather well featured. As long as you don't want to upgrade it. Ever.

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Theresa May: Right, THIS time we're getting the Snoopers' Charter in

Nick Ryan
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Re: If you've nothing to hide, you've nothing to fear.

If you truly have nothing to hide, why are you posting as an Anonymous Coward or are you just trolling?

Otherwise, you sir are the problem. Learn history. It all starts with an erosion of civil liberties, government tracking all manner of information about the people and before you know it what starts out innocently becomes a fascist state determined to, oooh, let me think... how about: invade Europe and factory-murder anybody who isn't of the master race, has an inconvenient ethnic background or to their minds not of the correct sexuality.

As for our "friends in Syria" - you're much more likely to be killed in a motor vehicle accident.

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Windows 10 hands on: Build 10074 is for the brave - but it's pretty snazzy

Nick Ryan
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FAIL

Thought I'd give Win10 a look at in a VM just now...

Oh FFS: "Insider Stats" > "0 quests completed", "0 quests completed on this device".

Is this a fucking operating system (preview) or is it some retarded game aimed at tween / teenagers? Did I download and install the wrong ISO from Microsoft?

Other than that, good chunks are similar to Win 8 with items helpfully hidden away, an odd mis-mash of touchscreen friendly and non-touchscreen friendly controls and stupid and annoying sounds and graphical fade transitions when they're not needed and don't enhance anything. In many places MS still seem to have forgotten some of the most basic aspects of good UI design, but it's not as bad as Win 8 where randomly thumbing the screen in the hope that something happened was the design principle of choice.

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You can't keep a Secret and nor can anyone else: the app is closing

Nick Ryan
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Re: So he didn't really expect massive trolling?

New or not, he was utterly, totally delusional and any even vaguely sane person would have accurately predicted that this would happen. Not just him either as the investors must have been braindead when spunking up that amount of cash for this as well.

Even when Internet users are not especially anonymous, when hidden behind the bravado enhancing Internet (i.e. not face to face with somebody else), they will troll, abuse and generally grief others solely because they can. It's a continuation of talking about somebody when they're not there.

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E-voting and the UK election: Pick a lizard, any lizard

Nick Ryan
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Re: Plenty, though, were disillusioned with politics

A friend has a good retort for the "if you didn't vote then you don't have a right to complain" type of comment: "I'd rather vote for somebody that I want in than the one that I least don't want in".

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TURKEY-SIZED 'platypus' T. REX found by kid BAFFLES boffins

Nick Ryan
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Re: Balance

I always understood that if T. Rex ran it would have leant forward and raised it's tail, however I've also read that they may have largely been scavengers or opportunists rather than particularly active hunters. No reason why they wouldn't have been both though.

A more normal posture would likely to have been much more upright, possibly with tail down and legs a bit forward (similar to a kangaroo in some ways) allowing it to bend down and eat things at it's feet.

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Apple Watch HATES tattoos: Inky pink sinks rinky-dink sensor

Nick Ryan
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Without being narky... it probably wasn't tested with tattoos. I would hope that they tested with a wide a range of skin pigmentation and body fat weight ranges as they could, but even though I'm around quite a few folk with tattoos I wouldn't have considered testing directly on a tattoo. From this particular example it would appear to be a specific type of ink that caused the problem rather than any tattoo ink so Apple may have even tested on tattoos.

I'd guess that this will be included in the tests next time around and / or there would be a new option to disable the sensors that no longer work as a result of particular tattoo inks.

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Secondhand Point-o-Sale terminal was horrific security midden

Nick Ryan
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Re: Haven't these people heard of DBAN?

My brother-in-law worked for a company that supplied systems to the MOD, and when a HDD or a software problem surfaced the MOD returned the HDD; Wiped, smashed and shredded. Software issues were quite difficult to resolve apparently.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Sounds like stores I deal with

Yep - I've come across crap like this as well as various international companies that insist on testing all windows updates extensively but never ever applying anything just in case it affects some remote system somewhere. Updates only ever went out on new kit which were usually about a year behind on critical updates but that was the plan as it was a known, "supportable" position.

The concept of writing code that was coded properly and adhered to all the long established windows application guidelines and didn't require ludicrous security permissions was utterly beyond them.

They still suffer from a lot of hits from viruses and often not recent viruses either. Wonder why?

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Apple Watch RIPPED APART, its GUTS EXPOSED to hungry Vultures

Nick Ryan
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Doesn't look to be unreasonably put together. When buying a watch one generally doesn't expect it to be upgradeable and just because somebody's shoved a small computer system and large screen into the form factor of a (large) watch doesn't make it a candidate for instant upgrading.

Like anything vaguely phone or computer like, this device will likely be obsolete within 3-5 years and the battery (in combination with a good quality charging circuit) should last that long. Replacing the battery after that time ought to be possible given this tear down but many users will just upgrade / replace the device instead because that's what they are used to doing with mobile devices.

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JavaScript CPU cache snooper tells crooks EVERYTHING you do online

Nick Ryan
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Re: I've got it now.

Aha. If that is the case then thanks for explaining just how this thing might be a vaguely useful exploit.

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Trading Standards pokes Amazon over 'libellous' review

Nick Ryan
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Re: Sugar Free Gummi Bear Reviews, Anyone?

It's not often that I genuinely LOL, but those reviews were so well written and descriptive that I just couldn't help myself. Shit. :)

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Yay, we're all European (Irish) now on Twitter (except Americans)

Nick Ryan
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If there's a conflict of demand between the US and a country like Ireland who do you think corporations will side with?

Whichever way makes more money. More insightful companies look to the long term on this as well particularly if their US market is largely saturated and they've just noticed that there are considerably more non-Americans on the planet than Americans.

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UK now part of another Euro data-spaff scheme

Nick Ryan
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"a key tool for national authorities to cooperate to fight terrorism and serious organised crime."

Ah, important to get the word terror in there, however the reality is more likely to be "catch tax dodgers" but that doesn't scare up the proles as much and "paedophiles" was even less easy to lever onto the justification. It's all about the money, with law enforcement a second priority - it's no coicidence that "serious organised crime" is considered so serious as they don't pay their taxes.

Maybe I'm just feeling particularly cynical today...

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Verizon to world: STOP opening dodgy phishing emails, FOOLS

Nick Ryan
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Re: No defense against willful ignorance.

If the damn Sender and Reply-To domain names don't match then it's usually a sign that something screwy is happening. This wouldn't fix every instance of phishing / spam but would resolve a lot of them and "good" bulk email senders like to ensure that an SPF record is created pointing to their systems if the client wants to keep the sender name consistent with their in-house emails.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Dear El Reg...

Or El Reg could quit this bullshit idea of foisting unrelated and largely ignores large images at the top of every article and the main page.

I'm sure I'm not the only one that every time the El Reg home page opens up I now automatically scroll down and ignore the retardely large image at the top so I can read the headlines below. I even paid attention recently and found that there were other article links "top stories" on the right hand side of these pointless images that I also skipped because of this. Talk about making a feature pointless.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: One thing is very interesting

It would have been nice if Exchange also supported SPF but no... AFAIK it took until MS Exchange 2013 because MS were too busy trying to foist their own "solution" onto the Internet instead of supporting standards.

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Xiaomi's birthday present to itself: Flogging 2m phones in 12 hours

Nick Ryan
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Re: Profit not volumes

Profit = the difference between the amount earned and the amount spent in buying, operating, or producing something.

Amazon make an enormous amount of money. However rather than sitting on it and admiring it or spaffing it at shareholders in great chunks they chose to continually re-invest the money.

It's basic business finance where if you record a profit the government will help themselves to a huge chunk of it (at least in the UK) therefore a good business accountant will always manage to offset the amount earned against investments, costs and other reasonable expenses to ensure that what's remaining is as low as possible. This is why international companies shift their profits to the most corporation tax friendly country as it's the difference between losing 40% of your profit to tax or considerably less, e.g. 1-2%.

As for stock market "worth" this is a total nonsense market as the perceived value of shares is usually down to pure speculation and greed rather than any particular indication of a company's value or business prospects.

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The coming of DAB+: Stereo eluded the radio star

Nick Ryan
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Statistics and lies?

While everyone talks about the key figures, like around half of adults owning a digital radio, and almost 40% of listening now being done via digital, that obscures some of the key things. Like, how many of those digital radios are actually used?

I suppose it depends on what you mean by "owning"? Posessing a family car that happens to have DAB on it (never used) and an utterly useless DAB radio in the kitchen I guess that applies... but as for using? Never. The DAB on the car seems to be missing the desired channels, frequently drops into radio black holes and is generally crap - there appear to be lots of stations that I don't care for though. As for the kitchen radio? Poor to no-signal and very limited stations again puts that into the useless category.

If they're lumping Internet listening into the statistics then that just makes a total mockery of the numbers and means that DAB uptake is in reality very, very low.

The one thing that I have noticed about discrete DAB sets is that they are finally no longer all ugly-as-shit with as few uselessly multi-functional buttons as possible. No idea what the designers were thinking but making all the sets as ugly and unusable as possible really wouldn't have helped the cause.

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Smart meters are a ‘costly mistake’ that'll add BILLIONS to bills

Nick Ryan
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Re: Thermostats

It's outstanding isn't it? Even with countless explanations, "her indoors" still thinks that in summer you should turn the damn thermostats down and that you turn them back up in winter.

Not just me either, a heating engineer who visited has the same problem where whenever his wife is cold she turns the thermostat to max, and then when she's warm she turns it way down again.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: The reason they are so keen on deploying smart meteres...

but I'll leave it to others to guess which ones that the powers-that-be decide to grace

Hmmm... let me think on the exclusions: "Celebrities" (or any mind numbingly talentless twatt who's spent more than 5 minutes on a reality show), MPs and their aides, local councillors with the exception of the one or two token members who will estoll the virtues of the scheme and those with their trouts in the the "smart" meter trough?

My insincerest apologies if I've missed any other worthies out.

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700,000 beautiful women do the bidding of one Twitter-scamming man

Nick Ryan
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(...)or the fact that so many people in the world, (not just via this particular scam), continue to believe that there exist, 'magic' pills, potions or extracts to loose weight.

But people are lazy. And Stupid. Often stupid because they are lazy. Laziness is an inate human trait and we wouldn't be where we are now without putting so much effort into making things easier for ourselves.

Look at how many half-respectable websites have a panel with spam shit on every page. The ones listing "you wouldn't believe what happened next in these 12 amazing pictures": photoshopped tatt for anybody with a clue or "online companies hate you knowing this trick to buying iPads": preying on the greedy and desperate or "doctors hate this miracle diet pill" (with appalling mis-matched "before" and "after" shots): seeking the lazy and gullible. And this shit is repeated time and time again, everywhere - slowly reinforcing validity through repetition which is a key factor in brain washing and certain established organisation types.

There genuinely are some medical products that can drastically help with weight loss. However these have usually been found to have rather unpleasant side effects often centred around or involving serious malnutrition buy often others as well. Not even the corporate controlled drug testing processes have permitted these drugs through to market given how dangerous they are. There are some very clever investigations underway that are looking at slight twists on the theme but from what I understand, even these are quite a few years away from even approaching clinical testing - one of the complexities is that our digestive systems are pretty much unique to each individual given genetic, lifestyle, age and sex differences and the widely varying makeup of bacteria that inhabit our guts and that are critical to digestion.

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Hey, Microsoft, we can call Windows 10 apps anything we like – you're NOT OUR REAL MOM

Nick Ryan
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Joke

...and the marketing drones cometh. Rebrand. Refresh. Recycle. Must have a new mission statement and whatever happens just make it look like something has changed.

Q: What do you call it when there's a marketing drone on the moon?

A: A problem

Q: What do you call it when there's ten marketing drones on the moon?

A: A serious problem

Q: What do you call it when all the marketing drones are on the moon?

A: Problem solved

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Chipzilla spawns 60-core, six-teraflop Xeon Phi MONSTER CHIP

Nick Ryan
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Re: The Platform

Turns out that it's only been around since the beginning of March (http://www.theplatform.net/2015/03/01/welcome-to-the-platform/... so I guess I haven't missed much!

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Nick Ryan
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The Platform

Sister website? News to me :) However have found the link now I look for it (top right corner of this page), but that's about it.

Maybe I'm being oblivious to these things (I have developed a habit over many years of web surfing to ignore all adverts) but I'm sure I'd have noticed this!

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Ford: Our latest car gizmo will CHOKE OFF your FUEL if you're speeding

Nick Ryan
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Re: speed kills

In any case , the guy I saw joining the motorway at 30 miles an hour would be the safest guy on the road, instead of rammed sideways by a truck and flying into the central armco

Exactly. If the traffic on the road is moving at 60mph (assume inside lane of motorway with trucks) then the safest speed to join the motorway is 60mph. This is why these things are called "accelleration lanes", to allow the joining vehicles to get to speed so they can safely join the road.

Had an argument with the mother-in-law a few years back about how extremely dangerous it is to join a motorway at 30mph compared to 60/70mph. She just couldn't get it through her head that the gaps to join would effectively be larger and she would be less of an utter hazard to all following vehicles (who would also have to slow down to 30mph and also join dangerously). But this is the same woman who ignores all cyclists on the road and claims that "it's ok to drink and drive if you're local".

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Another nail in the coffin...

It's always the case that inappropriate speed is the problem. And councils love to slap inappropriately low speed limits on roads where some idiot somehow manages to lose control on an otherwise open, clear road with a minor curve in it. It must make them feel good about doing something...

Other than the 40 milers, who are seemingly oblivious to every other road user or speed limit and likely get a nose bleed if their car approaches 50mph (especially on an accelleration lane joining a motorway), the most dangerous drivers are those who drive too close to others or just the wrong speed for the circumstance. Driving 30mph in a 30mph zone is fine, but not when you're 30cm behind the car in front. Likewise driving 30mph in a 30mph zone around a 90 degree blind corner is stupid as well.

But appropriate speed doesn't matter, it is far more important to rake in cash, demonise those who drive safely but get caught going over the speed limit a bit (I'm not advocating speeding, just trying to be realistic). Of course then comes the entirely valid, but annoying, argument that the 30mph speed limit is not a target speed, it's the maximum.

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HUGE Aussie asteroid impact sent TREMORS towards the EARTH'S CORE

Nick Ryan
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Re: Silly question .... how old is the moon?

Any Earth collision that formed the moon would have happened much, much earlier. That kind of impact would have wiped out all life except possibly for a few very resilient bacteria, and there would be very little record of anything that happened before it.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Devonian?

There is also one more thing to keep in mind... the high speed impact of a very large rock with the planet's surface will trigger immense shockwaves which will also trigger volcanic activity elsewhere.

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WinPhone? PAH! If you want Microsoft's mobe apps, grab an Android

Nick Ryan
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Removable?

I'm quite happy for these apps to be bundled with phones. However they must be removable should the user not want them: foisting unwanted, unremovable crap (crap: as in unwanted apps) on a device is simply not acceptable.

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Ten things you always wanted to know about IP Voice

Nick Ryan
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Which PC would normally be connected to the LAN via the phone...

It's quite common for VOIP phones to connect to the PC's network connector and to have a "pass-through" connector to connect the phone to the PC. These phones are effectively 3 port network switches, with the three connections being 1) the wall socket, 2) the phone and 3) the PC. These network switches are usually 100, not Gigabit ports.

While this may sound an odd thing to do, it greatly reduces the number of network ports required although many sites have a socket for the phone and a socket for the PC in place already, it just depends on whether or not the phone socket can be repurposed as a network socket or not. You'd be surprised how many can't be!

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