* Posts by Ralph B

1305 posts • joined 12 Apr 2007

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7/7 memories: I was on a helpdesk that day and one of my users died

Ralph B
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@Number6 Re: No more terrorism.

> The irony is that the Franklin quote is used out of context

I now see what you mean. Thanks. I shall mentally move that quote from the "obligatory" list to the "deprecated" one.

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Ralph B
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Re: No more terrorism.

> Terrorism of all sorts must be stopped.

Any ideas on how to achieve this, beyond more of those tried already, which haven't worked, and are slowly tipping us towards being a police state?

Obligatory Ben Franklin quote. “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

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Obsolescence of food is complete: Soylent now comes in bottles

Ralph B
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Mushroom

Re: "Unlike crispy bacon, Soylent 2.0 is available on a subscription basis"

Of course there are already bacon subscription services. Try this one or google others.

Sometimes I wonder if The Reg are losing it.

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One MEEELLION users download Facebook-pwning droid game

Ralph B
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Re: Annoying...

From the article: Fang says the scam spread to users in a victim's contact list, and likely used automated scripts to spread over social media.

Maybe you should try adding this functionality to your lousy game. Unless you're a decent person.

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FLYING PIG crash-lands in Utah: Rider survives, bacon saved

Ralph B
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So ...

So, a high cowboy poked a pig, causing severe depression in the pig, and the pig's owner blew off a load of hot air.

Sounds like everyday life in Utah.

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Microsoft SLASHES 7,800 bods, BURNS $7.6bn off books in Nokia adjustment

Ralph B
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Re: I'm starting to lose track of this

> 4. Nadella is replaced by Cortana.

Now that actually would be a great idea. Imagine all company management replaced by AI. It's as wonderful a prospect as self-driving cars.

Imagine management making rational, fact-based decisions, rather than the mad, drunken, macho posteuring, self-interested, insider-trading, and random brain-fart-based management performed by our current meatsack masters-of-disasters.

Just give the AI management rules to find a sane balance between share-holder and public benefit: a fixed percentage of profit to R&D; no raiding of pension-funds; maybe efficient co-ordination with other companies rather than effort-duplicating competition; with clear goals to improve tech based on open-standards.

Sounds good to me.

I for one welcome our silicon-based managebot masters.

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Ford's 400,000-car recall could be the tip of an auto security iceberg

Ralph B
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Just You Wait

It'll be just a matter of time before we have a Patch Tuesday for Cars. Or Recall Tuesday, perhaps.

When the self-driving cars have taken over, we'll just notice that the roads are rather empty, because all the vehicles have taken themselves off to the workshops. And your car-ordering app will just sit there showing a spinning wheel for a few hours.

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#FishermenNeedTwitter: Vodafone extends 4G to the edge of Iceland

Ralph B
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It'll All End In Tears

I just hope they limit their 4G signal to be within their internationally-recognised territorial waters, otherwise there might be problems. (Although I'm not sure if Vodafone UK have the wherewithall to put a basestation on a battleship.)

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‘Clandestines' prompt British border blockade in France

Ralph B
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That remark was quite beyond the pale.

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Script-blocker NoScript lets in ANYTHING from googleapis.com

Ralph B
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Re: Chrome and uMatrix

Use wget and less. Can't be too paranoid.

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WikiLeaks docs show NSA's 10-year economic espionage campaign against France

Ralph B
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News?

This sort of thing has been going on for the last 1000 years.

I think Assange's barrel of leaks must be nearly empty.

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MAC address privacy inches towards standardisation

Ralph B
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Re: Randomising MAC address

@Ben Tasker: Thanks for the info. That would certainly break filtering clients by MAC address. Sigh.

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Ralph B
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Re: Randomising MAC address

It's only the MAC address used when probing for known networks that is being randomised. As soon as you connect (or try to connect) then you're using your real MAC address. More details here.

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Amazon enrages authors as it switches to 'pay-per-page' model

Ralph B
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> If I pay for the whole book

In this case you are not paying for the book. As the article states: 'It will affect self-published authors on the Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Owners' Lending Library." So, only books you are lending or renting from Amazon, not those that you buy. Remember, Kindle Unlimited users are free to download as many books (on the list) as they want, for a fixed monthly fee.

> To me, this just looks like another money grab by Amazon on the backs of the authors.

Amazon are not reducing the size of the royalties pie, they are just changing the way it is distributed. Authors who write books that users read will receive more, whilst authors who write books that users don't read will receive less. Personally I can't see this as anything other than a Good Thing.

Of course, if you think Amazon is using some (other) trick of false accounting to screw the authors, then this is quite another (unrelated) matter.

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Ralph B
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Re: re: Price-per-page is a lot fairer for everybody.

Thanks for the explanation, Swarthy. In either case, I see some opportunities to game the system, but much more easily in the former case.

Previously, the "author" would need to hire a sweat-shop to repeatedly download his "book" to ensure an unfair slice of the Amazon pie. Now he (or she) will also need to get the sweat-shop to pretend-read the "book" too. Which will hopefully be enough to make such trickery economically unviable.

So, well done Amazon!

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Ralph B
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Re: Hmmm ... compare and contrast ...

No downvotes from us, surely. We're all big Led Zep fans here on The Reg forums.

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Google creates cloud code cache

Ralph B
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WTF?

It was only 3 months ago that they announced the shutdown of their Google Code project hosting service and now they are opening another one. WTF?

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What is this river nonsense? Give .amazon to Bezos, says US Congress

Ralph B
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Headmaster

Re: Pedantic Grammar Nazi Compromise?

> I have to continue this chain, not as good as amazon.amazon.amazon then.

My research suggests that we could keep this exchange going for another 289 to 294 iterations before we get to the very best possible amazon domain name.

Or we could stop here. :-)

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Ralph B
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Headmaster

Re: Pedantic Grammar Nazi Compromise?

> Well, obviously, if amazon.com is good, amazon.amazon is twice as good...

But would it really be any better than amazon.amazon.com ... ?

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Ralph B
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Headmaster

Pedantic Grammar Nazi Compromise?

Since the Amazon River is actually called "Amazonas" in the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries of South America where the river flows, maybe they could have the .amazonas TLD, leaving .amazon for the so-named Seattle-based ecommerce company. (Although, why .amazon.com shouldn't suffice, I do not understand.)

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Polish airline LOT was grounded after 'IT attack' took hold

Ralph B
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Coat

Re: I feel a pun coming on...

Their flights were poleaxed.

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How Music Got Free and Creatocracy

Ralph B
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Pirate

@ 1980s_coder

I see your post has been ripped and digitally copied already. Damn those pirates.

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YOU ARE THE DRONE in Amazon's rumoured new parcel delivery plan

Ralph B
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Re: Umm no

> I don't want a random stranger knowing my address and coming to my door.

Well, thankfully they can't possibly get such information from anywhere else.

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Nobel bro-ffin: 'Girls in the lab fall in love with me ... then start crying'

Ralph B
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Headmaster

Re: Non-subjuncitivist feminists

> I've never found feminists to be particularly hot on logic.

But your criticism was of the AC's grammar rather than his or her logic, surely?

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Ralph B
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Re: what does 'the same gender' mean?

> Truly, that phenomenon is nonsense, Jenner included. He would never have won the decathlon with a record score if he had really been a woman.

He/she might have had an advantage clearing the hurdles, I suppose.

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Ralph B
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Re: As IF they are equal?

Almost certainly deliberate, I think. It's a Richard Herring quote.

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But ... but iOS 9 could BLOCK my Ad-Block, dev squeals

Ralph B
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Re: i think i might have missed something

There are apps that facilitate access to a http proxy which then blocks the ads in Safari. There are also ad-blocking alternatives to Safari which are also webkit based and are functionally (almost) identical to Safari.

So, it's not quite true to say there is no ad-blocking business on iOS.

(I see you wanted a link.)

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Ralph B
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Re: Another arms race in the making

> Expect the ad agencies to come up with "ingenious" new ways to bypass ad blockers and the like some time soon.

What about product placements in articles, whilst listening to the your latest Audible book, and in user forums, while your PC completes its backup with Carbonite? With Carbonite, whether it's business or personal, your data is there to stay.

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Ralph B
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Owning the Means of Production

If Apple controls the mechanism for blocking adverts, then they can ensure that their adverts don't get blocked unless they allow it.

Then they can charge their advertisers premium rates for adverts that don't get blocked, or at least get blocked less often.

At least with Apple there is a hope that these expensive and exclusive adverts will be better controlled for taste and trojans than most of what we meet on the web nowadays. Or at least we would meet if we weren't already using NoScript, AdBlockPlus, etc.

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'Stolen' art found on nearby shelf. Police keep looking anyway

Ralph B
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VLK

Volume License Key

(In case you were as baffled as me.)

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Russia copies EU commissars with own right to be forgotten law

Ralph B
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Caterham 270S: The automotive equivalent of crack

Ralph B
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Re: I had a dream about this car a few nights ago

In my dreams I'd love to have a Caterham, however, for real life reasons I bought an MX5 instead.

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Chinese bloke escapes execution for Forbidden City nude photo shoot

Ralph B
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Disgusting!

Argh! You didn't obscure her elbows!

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Naked cyclists take a hard line on 'aroused' protest participant

Ralph B
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Re: @Trevor_Potts again

Sorry if I struck a nerve, Trevor. Just some final thoughts here:

1) I am an atheist.

2) I personally have no problem with you waving your erect penis around in public. I was attempting (and apparently failing) to explain why society-in-general finds such behaviour worrying, to the extent of drafting laws against it. I thought the gun analogy works, but obviously for you (and at least 42 others) it doesn't. So be it.

3) Have a good day now.

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Ralph B
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@Trevor_Potts again

> I don't have conscious control over whether or not I have an erection. I do have conscious control over whether or not I carry a gun.

However I assume that you do have conscious control over whether you reveal your penis in public. To extend my "flawed", "irrational and dangerous" analogy further, this is exactly why concealed carrying of weapons is permitted in many US states, whereas waving your weapon around in public is not. One behaviour is likely go unnoticed, whereas the other is likely to cause public anxiety and distress regarding the perceived risks.

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Ralph B
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@Trevor_Potts

Thanks for writing a more considered reply than "Your analogy is stupid" to my now massively down-voted missive.

> I don't have conscious control over whether or not I have an erection. I do have conscious control over whether or not I carry a gun.

You do however have conscious control over whether you reveal your penis to others.

> I can carry around both and erect penis AND a gun and proceed to use neither of them

Indeed, but at the risk of collecting yet more downvotes, I would like to point out that an erect penis can be used for a lot of things that an flaccid penis cannot, just as a gun can be used for a lot of things that an absence-of-a-gun cannot. That is why the the items in question are more worrying to observers.

> An erect penis is no different from an unerect penis.

Except, again, for what it can be used for. An observer seeing a fellow wielding a gun or an erect penis would be justly concerned at what that fellow might be about to do with it. They might, for instance, be worried that he will poke someone with it, or that it will go off accidentally in his hand. A fellow with no gun, or a flaccid penis, raises no such concerns.

Now I'm not saying that erect penises are guns. They are not deadly weapons (unless badly infected.) Indeed, when used appropriately they are wondrous, life-enhancing and life-giving things. But to pretend that observers need not be concerned at the implications of their unexpected appearance for unwanted physical attention, pregnancy, or at least laundry services is clearly nonsense. The flaccid penis presents a much reduced set of risks.

Surely such a logical and empirical observation cannot be so controversial as the forum votes suggest?

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Ralph B
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Thumb Up

> Let me try to explain with an analogy

Wow! 23 down-votes and counting. I hadn't realised The Reg had such a following from flashers.

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Ralph B
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> Floppy willy fine, hard willy not fine.

Let me try to explain with an analogy: A man running around with a gun is more worrying than a man running around with no gun. One worries that he might want to fire it at someone. And that could really spoil someone's day. Even if he is firing blanks, or if the gun is unloaded but he pokes someone with it. He could have someone's eye out with it.

<small>(For the hard-of-thinking, the "gun" in this analogy is an "erection", not a "willy".)</small>

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LightSail mission stalled by .CSV log file embiggenment SNAFU

Ralph B
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logrotate

It could be a very niche movie for sysadmins: "logrotate IN SPAAAACE!!!"

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Amazon reveals KiddieKindle and pocket money scheme

Ralph B
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Re: Please be accurate with your information!

> Or am I missing something?

I think the only thing you might be missing is an appreciation of The Register's inate tendency towards contrarianism. It's one of the amusingly annoying things we love it for.

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.sucks-gate: How about listening to us the first two times, exasperated FTC tells ICANN

Ralph B
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Re: We didn't need that many TLDs afterall.

ICANN is to the internet what FIFA is to football*.

* Soccer, USians.

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Ralph B
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Related News

Reports that Apple have bought theregister.sucks may not be entirely reliable.

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WOODEN computer chips reveal humanity's cyber elf future

Ralph B
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What would Jesus say?

"Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the syslog that is in your own eye?"

Mathew 7:3 (almost)

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Creationist: The Flintstones was an accurate portrayal of Dino-human coexistence

Ralph B
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Re: Derr.....

"That would be an ecumenical matter"

"Yes"

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Ralph B
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Re: Ham

Dunno about kosher, but he certainly got stuck in my spamfilter.

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Wi-Fi was MEANT to be this way: Antennas and standards, 802.11 style

Ralph B
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802.11 ay?

So, we've already had 802.11a, ah, ai and now ay. I look forward to seeing 802.11aye, i, eye, eh, r, ar, arr, and argh.

Not trying to confuse, eh?

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Google patents DEVIL TOY which will BRAINWASH KIDS

Ralph B
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Mushroom

That Confirms It

The pieces are falling into place. The autonomous Google vehicles packed with Nork nukes will appear to be piloted by cute animatronic teddy bears, to avoid suspicion, as they roll towards key locations in our major cities. Any talk of a Google Tax will soon disappear.

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Multiple fondling on the MIGHTY 12-INCH iOS 9 SLAB — so, so close now

Ralph B
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Lawsuit?

I wonder if Microware will give their lawyers another go at biting Apple regarding "iOS 9". (They lost back in 1999 for Mac OS 9.)

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Want to be the hottest thing since Melrose Place? Get these Lycos patents

Ralph B
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Impressive

$12.5bn to $95.4m in 4 years. That must have been a lot of cocaine, eh?

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Manchester car park lock hack leads to horn-blare hoo-ha

Ralph B
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Picture Question

If the incident happened in Manchester, UK, why is the picture heading the article of American firefighters attacking an American car in, presumably, America?

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