* Posts by Tim99

389 posts • joined 24 Apr 2008

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Firefox, Chrome, IE, Safari EXPLOITED to OWN Mac, PCs at Pwn2Own 2015

Tim99
Bronze badge
Joke

I will be (nearly) secure

OS platform fan boys, you are not secure.

I have a computer that I can set up with only the default install of OpenBSD on it and curl.

Then I can curl the websites I need and download them; then transfer the files that I created to a computer with a browser. Now, what can I use to do the transfer? Maybe SFTP; copy to floppy; burn to CD; transfer to USB - Oh crap, they are all potentially insecure.

I suppose I could always write my own compiler and OS and browser...

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Ex-cops dumped on never-hire blacklist for data misdeeds

Tim99
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@45RPM

I worked with police officers in the 70s and early 80s. Trust me, Life On Mars was closer to being a documentary than dramatic (science) fiction.

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Oi. APPLE fanboi! You with the $10k and pocket on fire! Fancy a WATCH?

Tim99
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Function and cost

My Longines watch was bought by my father in 1942 for £5 - Or a nearly 2 weeks wages for a working man. It is now worth about £1,000 or nearly 2 weeks wages.

It has been cleaned/serviced 5 times in its lifetime. The last one was 2 years ago and was £150. The total cost of ownership, so far, in real money is about £0.20 a week. I think that I can afford that for something that tells the time, looks good, and of course has a certain reverse-snobbery chic.

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The secret of Warren Buffett's success at Berkshire Hathaway

Tim99
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The Three Threes

My father was an accountant/senior local government officer, and one of the early people who invested local government money in OTC Spot Markets. He said that for much of his working life retail/high street banking was the "Three Threes" - Borrow at 3%, lend at 3% more than you borrow, and be on the golf course at 3:00pm.

Fortunately he had retired when we all started paying ourselves too much for too little, Then came deregulation and the Big Bang when merchant bankers started playing with the money that little old ladies had put into retail bank investments.

I remember when interest on my mortgage was 18% and everybody was in an inflating market (partly due to poor tax practices and high brokerage commissions). One of the upshots was that when inflation was high, mortgagees were encouraging people to trade-up based on their apparent increase in collateral on their homes.

Before that period mortgage lending was almost sensible, a mortgager would expect a 10% deposit and only lend a first-time buyer 3 times their salary (or if you were a couple 2-2.5 times their combined income) - But only if they had a secure job. How the hell did we get to people being lent 8 times their salary in times of apparently low inflation? This seems to drive relative house prices higher, and pushes all linked prices up. This might be a reason why many younger people will be unable to purchase their own house - Whether that is a bad thing, or not, I don't know, if we compare, say, the relatively high rental property share in Germany to that of the UK.

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In assault on American values, Lockheed BLASTS PICKUP with RAYGUN

Tim99
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Re: @Chemist (again)

I admit in my first reply to your original post I should have really just pointed out that the use of 'energy' instead of 'power' was the problem I had with it.

Yes, my use of "energy" was unfortunate. I should have qualified it with the word "destructive"; but as I said, I am possibly senile; and I believe that I was using the term loosely. As you have gathered I was (am) a chemist too, and have been for 44 years with Chartered status for over 30 years, so I do actually know this stuff.

I suspect that you (perhaps like I would have done before I worked with high explosives) looked at the numbers inferred by my post and thought that they could not possibly be correct - Largish amounts of energy liberated in a very short period of time is outside normal experience for most people - Hence your incorrect assumption that you would need a RPG with a 20 tonne charge.

HP, as you know, to be relevant, requires a time unit. That is why I included the car calculation in my reply to you - This shows a larger energy over a much longer time - If the petrol was mixed with a stoichiometric amount of a condensed phase oxidizer (a Sprengel explosive) and then detonated it would also give a large GJ/s result because the detonation velocity would also be in the order of Km/s and the time taken would be similar to a military HE.

Energy is the ability to do work - An explosive is powerful because it does that work in a very short time.

Regards, Tim

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Tim99
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@Chemist

"a RPG delivers very roughly a million times that amount of energy" ... kW is a unit of power not energy... If you meant 90 kJ are you seriously suggesting that a RPG delivers 90E9 J ? For comparison TNT has an explosive yield of ~4 MJ/kg.

Please show your workings ! (90E9 J is the rough yield from > 20 tonnes of TNT) That's some RPG. Shoulder launched ?

***********************************************************************************************************

I am old now (and possibly senile), but when I did this sort of thing as an explosives chemist for MoD over 40 years ago the rough rule of thumb was 1 cubic inch of composite HE generates 7million HP when it goes bang.

Many of us get confused about energy power and and the rate of doing work. I can get confused with units because when I was at school, we learnt ft-lb/sec, then c.g.s, then m.k.s; and then, when I was working, SI units. So, to see if I am in the right ball park, a few numbers:-

Petrol (which is a lot more energetic/Kg than TNT as it has no oxygen contained within it) has 8 MJ/L or 44.4 MJ/kg - In a 90 Kw car, that 1 kg would allow it to travel very roughly 15 km in 15 mins - The engine uses that 44 MJ in 900 seconds or very roughly 0.05 MJ/s (It doesn't because petrol engines are ~30% efficient).

TNT only has 4.7 MJ/kg. The more powerful composite high explosives would have >5 MJ/kg. A RPG warhead contains ~0.2Kg of explosive so that would be ~1 MJ. The velocity of detonation of composite is ~8000 m/s, and the maximum distance the detonation front has to travel within the charge is ~0.1 m. So the explosion takes 0.1/8000 sec or 1/80000 sec, therefore the RPG warhead explosion generates 1 x 80000 MJ/s or 80 GJ/s. Your 90E9 J value (90 GJ) has no time units.

The calculation based on the MoD rough rule of thumb:-

1HP = 7.46 E-7 GJ/s, so 7 million HP = 7E6 x 7.46 E-7 GJ/s or ~5 GJ/s. The warhead contains roughly 0.2kg of explosive with a density of ~1.5 which is ~130mL or roughly 8 cubic inches, so the total yield is 8 x 5 GJ/s or ~ 40GJ/s - Obviously this is about half of the "theoretical value" but allowing for differences in explosive material, velocity, and energy transfer; it is pretty close.

The secret of the large amount of destructive power in a small device is the very short time that it takes to be generated (The velocity of detonation within the charge being 8000 m/s). So, no you don't need >20 tonnes of TNT you only need 0.2 kg. RPGs can be particularly effective as they rely on the "shaped charge" effect, where most of the charge's energy is used to project a similar mass of copper in a jet with a tip velocity of ~10km/s and a temperature of ~500C into the target.

High explosives are generally classified as such if they have a detonation velocity of >3000 m/s. Gunpowder (black powder) as used in fireworks only has a deflagration velocity of 600 m/s and does not 'explode' unless confined.

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Tim99
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@beast666

My Renault Scenic outputs 90Kw.

Good point. To put the directed energy weapon prototypes in perspective a RPG delivers very roughly a million times that amount of energy from half a mile away at a very low cost.

The main point of expensive weapons system is to funnel tax revenue such that a large amount of money finishes up, via corporations, in the control of a very few individuals.

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Office for Mac 2016 Preview: This letter will self-destruct in 60 days

Tim99
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Gimp

Re: So, so happy ..

So, so happy ..

.. with LibreOffice.

That's all.

I would be too, if it did not require Java for full functionality on OS X.

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Telly behemoths: Does size matter?

Tim99
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A bit of Social history

A woman down the road, who was "on the social", yet had a TV set with doors on.

As far as the "social" was concerned a TV with doors was "furniture", which the social services could supply to their clients. If it did not have doors it was classified as a TV or an electrical appliance which the social was not able to supply.

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To beat Oracle, find jurors who care about Leisure Suit Larry not Larry Ellison

Tim99
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Coat

I've posted this before

I have written stuff that uses Oracle going back to version 4. A truth that should be repeated:-

Q. What do you call Oracle customers?

A. Hostages.

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BOFH in mugnificent return to Cash'n'Carrion

Tim99
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Coat

@Jim 48

I agree, size matters. In an emergency your mug may be the only LART to hand.

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And the buggiest OS provider award goes to ... APPLE?

Tim99
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Re: Apples compared to Oranges

@Britt

These are client systems, not minimal Debian or OpenBSD server installations that can do useful stuff without a browser - Have you tried running OS X or Windows without their bundled browsers? You can't uninstall the core components on either machine, but you can uninstall a lot more of Safari. I note that Chrome and Firefox also have more high level vulnerabilities than Safari, so if you were using OS X you might not bother.

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Tim99
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Gimp

Apples compared to Oranges

OK, I admit it - I read the original article. Not the best headline unless Betteridge's Law applies?

The original article states that Windows 8.x and Internet Explorer combined have 278 vulnerabilities including 242 High Level vulnerabilities. OS X and Safari have 217 including 67 High Level vulnerabilities...

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Google opens 'Inbox' heir-to-email trial to biz users

Tim99
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Devil

Open source

Google - We use "open source" so that you don't have to. E-mail is obviously far to much trouble for a business to do, so we will do it for you, and monetorize you to our real customers. You are not a customer of Google even if you pay them, just a resource to ber mined.

"Don't be evil", unless it helps us become more powerful and earn even more...

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It's not easy being Green. But WHY insist we knit our own ties?

Tim99
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Re: @Tim99

Good point Chris. Have an Upvote, although I don't think many El Reg readers work 35 hours a week or less, and few don't commute, unless they work from home. Working from home was great for me when I was self-employed - It allowed me to work a 60+ hour week ;-)

I'm retired now, and have learnt a truth that you may hear from other retirees "Im so busy, I don't know how I ever had time for work".

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Tim99
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Re: Let me get this right:

@Chris Miller

"Rich" meaning having free time, in modern times, tends to apply to those who are wage slaves.

We know that people in many hunter-gatherer societies only have to spend a couple of hours a day obtaining food and servicing their basic needs of procuring tools, accommodation and security. It was not until humans developed agriculture that most of us have had to work for much of our waking hours. Free time for many of us in the developed world is now quite limited after the time spent at work, travelling and sleeping. On the other hand we have a greater life expectancy and toothpaste.

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Tim99
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Specialization and Corporatism

An interesting article Tim, you might have overdone this bit though:-

By splitting up tasks so that different people do different parts of them, each person can become better at that specific task. We can thus get more production for the same amount of labour. And as living standards are going to depend on what we can get from human labour (as Paul Krugman has said, productivity isn't everything but in the long run it's pretty much everything) then increasing the efficiency with which we turn labour into products will raise living standards.

As far as I can see, many larger businesses have effectively simplified jobs by making them more limited. This applies particularly in service industries, which are apparently where most of us will be working - Each "skill" is being de-skilled such that it can be easily and cheaply taught, such that the worker is easy to replace. I suspect that this is deliberate as each worker becomes the supplier of a fungible service - Eighteenth century industrialists understood this, so this is not new - Although it might seem novel to people growing up after WWII, before the deregulation revolution of the 1980s.

This, and a deliberate increase in structural un(der)employment may be a significant mechanism that will have the affect of making many people in the developed world worse off, with less free time.

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Why 1.6 million people will miss Microsoft's Windows Server 2003 date with fate

Tim99
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Coat

@dogged

... related to embedding Java in it, which I suspect was done as proof that even Oracle can be made more obnoxious, obtuse, unfriendly and expensive if you try really hard.

As someone who was writing stuff with Oracle databases since Oracle V4, I can assure you that it did not need Java to make Oracle more obnoxious, obtuse, unfriendly and expensive - They managed that perfectly well with C...

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Developers, developers, developers! But WILL they support Windows 10?

Tim99
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Joke

Re: Hmm

There was this Write Once Run Anywhere language... I've been using it for years... Very popular in the enterprise. Lots of work and lots of devs. Now what was it...

I think you meant C.

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Tim99
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Windows

Re: we're already developing for Windows 10

@dogged

I was recently discussing software interfaces with a large manufacturer of a range of very expensive precision scientific instruments. Traditionally they are using Windows PCs for this (a long time ago they used VAXen or PDP11s).

They said that they were so annoyed with the uncertainty of Windows 7: 8; 8.1 and tablets that they were looking at a complete change of approach. One of the things that they are considering is to make each instrument with its own configurable internal web server. Its control parameters could be entered on its web pages by a PC, tablet, phone, terminal etc. There would be sufficient storage on each device that the data it had acquired could be transferred with a simple get after it had run.

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Turnbull says big telcos should subsidise bush comms

Tim99
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Joke

Command and Control?

If only Australia had a publicly owned communication structure then the Government could mandate what was built...

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'It's NOT FAIR!' yell RICH KIDS ... and that's a GOOD THING

Tim99
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Cutting the cake

A definition of "fair" that always seems to work is a cake that is divided between two people. The rule is that the cutter picks their piece of cake after the second person has chosen.

In a non 50:50 split there may be altruism shown by the first picker, so that the cutter benefits if they have not been "fair", but not in most cases (unless the chooser is on on a diet, or doesn't really like cake).

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FERTILISER DOOM warning! PESKY humans set to WIPE selves out AGAIN

Tim99
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Maintenance dose

If a farmer goes to the trouble of having soil samples analysed (normally by his fertilizer supplier) and there is enough N and P, the farmer will be told to apply a maintenance dose. That is a relatively low level of fertilizer, most of which gets washed away into the local water courses without affecting the crop. The fertilizer company REALLY does not want the farmer to not use their product - They might stop buying it when they don't need it...

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Alien Earths are out there: Our home is not 'unique'

Tim99
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Re: Nice simple recipe

Will there be award-winning fjords?

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1,000mph ROCKET CAR project dogged by beancounters

Tim99
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Flame

Ignition

Simon,

Thanks for the link to "Ignition!". I worked at one of the places mentioned with a number of the materials discussed. A particular joy of HTP was that, when over about 85%, it could set your clothing and hair on fire...

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El Reg tests portable breathalyzers: Getting drunk so you don't have to

Tim99
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Re: So really

Generally, you will be OK. Multiply the numbers by roughly 2/3, but you will still be over the legal limit in the morning. In most social drinking you would eat something which will slow everything down. Younger drinkers tend to throw-up at least as much as they keep down. Potentially lethal levels start at ~0.25% - I have personal knowledge of people dying at that level, although usually after inhaling vomit.

I know of one RTA fatality at 0.1% where an elderly woman was struck by a car. The driver was just under the limit, and the suggestion was that the pedestrian was drunk. However witnesses said that she had nursed her usual single pint of Mackeson before walking in front of the car. She only weighed 5 stone.

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Tim99
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Pint

Re: So really

>>==================> Approximately 2 standard drinks.

OK, I've driven to the pub, drank a gallon of beer and got a taxi home.

What point the next day am I safe to drive? It would be nice if you could buy a cheap unit to give you a vague idea of whether you're legal or not.

A rough answer, assuming that you are sober enough to do the sums: A pint is roughly 2 standard drinks (Old Peculiar is more, boy's bitter is less). So your gallon is roughly 16 standard drinks. A standard drink is roughly equivalent to a 0.03% blood alcohol level if drunk by an average 11 stone man. The same man could metabolize alcohol at roughly 0.018% each hour. So if you drank your gallon over 4 hours you would be very roughly 16x.03 - 4x.018, say 0.4%. This is a level where people can die due to respiratory suppression... Assuming that you get home at midnight, and don't choke in your own vomit overnight, at 8:00am you are still likely to be at five times the 0.05 limit.

In the real world there are a lot more variables. Women have proportionally more fat in their bodies, so their blood volume is generally less (as well as generally having lower levels of the enzyme that metabolizes alcohol). If your weight is 22 stone (and not mostly fat!) you can drink more.

Generally people who drink regularly appear to be less drunk, but when analysed their blood alcohol limits are similar to people who drink less.

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Microsoft drops early Chrissie pressie on Mac Office fanbois

Tim99
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Re: Libre Office

Libre Office for Mac. No subscription required, no MS tax to pay, no ongoing financial commitment. Nothing else to say.

Unfortunately to get full use of Libre Office, it needs Java, so no, thank you.

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Tim99
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Gimp

Sorry, too little, too late

I never bothered to upgrade from the previous version. I'm retired and really don't need it.

On the Mac, TextEdit, Pages, vim, and nano do most of what I want. I am also sad enough to type: echo Put text in a file by echoing from the CLI. >>somefile.txt

If I need a higher fidelity copy of a Microsoft file, starting up the free MS Word or Excel viewers in a Windows VM in Parallels then printing the file through a PDF printer does it for me.

The free iPad versions of Excel, Powerpoint, and Word are also handy...

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Masala omelette

Tim99
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Coat

Don't forget

For emergencies, keep a roll of lavatory paper in the fridge.

You'll be sweating so much, you won't need a coat >>=========>

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Coming clean: Ten cordless vacuum cleaners

Tim99
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Dyson stick

We have the new model Dyson stick without the animal head (no pets). We both have back trouble and I have a duff neck caused by a RTA. The old cylinder cleaner was too heavy and its wheels kept getting stuck in the deep-pile carpet, causing it to fall over. We replaced it with the Dyson and are very pleased with it.

I can clean our 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, small office, hall and living/dining/kitchen unit with a single charge. Not having a cable to trip over is a real bonus. The docking station is screwed to a wall in the garage, and is easy to use provided you remember to lift the cleaner slightly before pushing it into place.

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Google Contributor: Ad-block killer – or proof NO ONE will pay for news?

Tim99
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Big Brother

Insufferable Smug Git Mode

I use DuckDuckGo.

On the occasions that I use Google (DuckDuckGo is not perfect) Google has to fight through a private mode browser, AdBlock, Privoxy, Ghostery, and a hosts file on a connection with a dynamic address.

So, to them, I would appear to be a paranoid tight-arse who doesn't buy anything - Well the paranoid bit may be right...

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Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP

Tim99
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Headmaster

Where is the P?

"The TITSUP (Total Inability To Support Usual Service)" - TITSup what?

TITSUP - Total Inability To Support Usual Service Processes/Procedures/Practice?

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VINYL is BACK and you can thank Sonos for that

Tim99
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Wot - No LP12?

My wife bought us a Linn LP12 in 1974. It became a bit of a Trigger's broom, but still had the original base, bearings, lid, suspension, and top plate until I had to sell it a few years ago after a motor accident. It is still going strong with its new owner.

There real bugger was having to buy the Naim 250, speakers, radio, etc., to go with it...

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Consumers start feeling the love as Chromebook sales surge

Tim99
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Gimp

Re: Samsung

@Big_D

My iPad Air takes just under 20 seconds to boot from off, or less than a second from Sleep...

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Sign off my IT project or I’ll PHONE your MUM

Tim99
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Nomenclature

Do you remember the prediction in the late-1970s that by the turn of the century we will have entered a push-button age? Apparently, computers and robots would take over all our hard work and society would be struggling to deal with all the leisure time with which we’d be left to endure.

Leisure time? I don’t think so. Even by Tomorrow’s World standards, this prediction turned out to be a real turkey.

Alistair, I was helping this stuff happen back then. We just used the wrong words like "leisure time". The correct ones were "necessary structural unemployment", or "labour is too expensive, even when it comes from low-cost countries". The exception is for people with the required skills who we will work even harder.

Have you noticed that C18th capitalism is making a return? The idea seems to be that businesses should have fungibility of their workforces - If they can't be automated.

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FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for

Tim99
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Gimp

Is it faster?

My iMac was getting slow. I am an old fart with the attention span of a gnat, so I often have 5 Safari windows open (each with about 10-15 tabs); 4 Firefox windows; iTunes, Mail with 3,500 messages in the Inbox; and Terminal with 4 tabs etc... A week ago I upgraded the 4GB of RAM it had to 8GB. No surprise, everything worked better: 5+GB App memory; 1.4GB File cache; No Swap used, no Compressed memory.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was, if anything, even faster under Yosemite than Mavericks.

Unfortunately the colour scheme does look as though it was designed in 1996 by a web-site designer who had just transitioned from writing DOS applications to an EGA screen.

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Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores

Tim99
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Buy Other Sound Equipment

My wife has a pair a small Bose speakers running off the headphone socket of a 21inch TEAC TV, and they are OK - There is too much, badly controlled, bass; but if you turn the TV's bass down it is OK. We got them because, although the 1920x1080 screen gave a great picture, the TV's internal speakers sound similar to what you hear from a teenager's earphones when they have them inserted in their ears and turned up to full volume.

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Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...

Tim99
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Coat

Re: And it only remains...

@Gert Leboski

Single oar sculling? Wikipedia Link

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Marriott fined $600k for deliberate JAMMING of guests' Wi-Fi hotspots

Tim99
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Re: There be dragons here

Not necessarily. The post didn't say $13bn of market cap, it said $13bn of annual turnover.

Yes, I saw that. I have run busnesses and, frankly, $500m on a turnover of $13bn suggests that they are in a difficult market (or they are incompetent, or the executives might be taking more than a shareholder would like). Microsoft used to make a profit of >$0.80 on each $1.00 of turnover, Apple recently declared $7.7bn on a turnover of $37.4bn. One of the Australian banks I referred to reported a profit of $7.67bn on revenues of $44.87bn...

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Tim99
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Re: There be dragons here

That is a pretty pitiful rate of return for a shareholder, so maybe that is why they are acting like scum.

I can get a similar rate from one of the big Australian banks for a simple 3-4 year term deposit!

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Welcome the world's new Most Phished Country: Australia

Tim99
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Or not?

The most gullible and trusting nation in the world perhaps?

Or, perhaps, the country in the highest 5 ranking of GDP per capita with the highest population?

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Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp

Tim99
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Re: Yet again

... An enormous number of people over the age of 35 will have no use for anything except email. They will have no interest in YouTube and telling them about Drive is pointless. Few people have use for it. ...

I'm retired, but volunteer to teach computing to retirees. Many of our pupils do use e-mail, but almost all of them like and use YouTube. Mostly they had heard of YouTube but (Perhaps because their children and grandchildren think that YouTube is not for old people), we have to demonstrate that you can get real music (from the 1950s-1980s) on it for free. Other YouTube resources that are appreciated include demonstrations of DIY, knitting, handcrafts, etc.

Not so much interest in G+ news and discussions though.

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Hot Celebrity? Stash of SELFIES where you're wearing sweet FA? Get 2FA. Now

Tim99
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Re: guessed password-recovery questions

@Tom 35

If there is no Apple weakness why is it that as far as I've read it's all Apple users that have been hit?

Because this collection of material seems to include selfies that show Android and Blackberry devices too?

It appears that the material has been leaked from a privately traded collection obtained by a number of different people over a period of several years, that mainly includes Apple stuff. As an observation, as many celebrities have iPhones, that is where more of the material is likely to originate?

A modern version of the "private" 8mm movie and Polaroid film pictures that would only become publicly available if you were burgled, or one of the participants leaked it. Technology can change quickly, human psychology not so much...

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Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?

Tim99
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Re: Economists solving the problems the last one caused

@Alan Brown

The hypocrisy about "saving our village" (most of which is 1930s era housing) lumbers on and on and on - and the most fundamental objection raised to allowing new housing is that "it lowers property values"

My late father was a (very) senior local government officer. He said that the most strident NIMBYs were always the most recent people to move into a village. He thought that their attitude was "I have moved here, now nobody else should be able to, and nothing must change". The people wanted new housing and new employment opportunities were almost always those who were born there.

The people who did not want a new by-pass around villages were almost exclusively those who did not live there (or did not want it going past their very large attractive 100+ year old properties, on the outskirts, near the new road).

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China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft

Tim99
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Linux

Red Flag...

...Linux again? Wikipedia Link.

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BOFH: We CAN do that with a Raspberry Pi, but think of the BODIES

Tim99
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Pint

Brilliant

The first two items to show up on the Weekend edition were Simon and coffee making. Have a free beer >>======>

Please try to avoid stuff that could be construed as work at the weekend.

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Best shot: Coffee - how do you brew?

Tim99
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Happy

Aeropress with milk

As you say the Aeropress no crema thing can be a bit of a disappointment for espresso fans, although our local supplier will do a special Aeropress grind which can give a small amount of foam.

For the milky coffee drinker you can get a reasonable facsimile of proper foam by putting some skimmed milk in the microwave for a minute or so and then beating it with a small hand whisk (Remember to leave the milk for a few seconds before you take it out of the microwave to avoid boiling milk "bumping" all over you).

I am fortunate to live in one of the world's best coffee making areas, Western Australia - So if I really need crema, and I can afford $5, I go to one of the many excellent coffee places by the beach, otherwise I now use an Aeropress almost exclusively at home. The less fortunate thing about living here is than most people can't make a decent cup of tea...

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