159 posts • joined 25 Apr 2008
If research into hydrogen-powered vehicles eventually results in a massive uplift and cost-drop in hydrogen storage and management tech, doesn't that have some potential to solve the storage problem which besets renewable leccy? So rather than building massive tidal lakes or pumping water up mountains with spare capacity when it's windy/sunny, you just electrolyse water and store the hydrogen locally, then fill your car up (or run your central heating) when you need to?
Just askin' ...
> The state exists at our pleasure.
This must be a usage of the word "pleasure" of which I was previously unaware...
> It has no legitimacy otherwise and should be opposed if it continues to exert authority beyond its mandate. This battle has already been fought and won and our rights were paid for with the blood of our forefathers.
No they weren't. As you say yourself, "At the end of the day, 'might makes right'" - power has accrued among the mightiest, or in more recent cultural parlance, the richest.
> The power of the state has a limit and that limit has long since been passed.
I wish I believed this.
>There *must* be some avenue whereby people who disagree with the government of the day can organize, protest and if need be make their wishes plain with civil disobedience.
Yes - but there are laws against engaging in any and all such activities. These are largely enforced at the discretion of the police, but given that for anyone to notice, such activities would have to happen in London, and therefore the police in question is the Met, it's bound to end badly.
> If no such avenues exist, then we exist in a tyranny which does not have legitimate authority over us.
Well spotted, full marks.
> The representatives of the state break the covenant whereby they gained their power in the first place.
As above - they gained their power in the first place by being bigger and badder (and more recently richer, and therefore able to subcontract bigness and badness out to lowlier grunts), so no convenant applies.
> A portion of our fundamental laws are designed precisely to ensure we are still able to regain control of our government.
No, a portion of our fundamental laws are designed precisely to prevent this (RIPA, Official Secrets, Terrorism legislation, and the tacit understanding that standing in the street holding a placard constitutes a breach of anti-terrorist legislation if the plod on the ground decides it does). There is a second portion of our laws which were designed precisely to make us *think* that we have rights, but these are always secondary to the first portion, and are meaningless in the absence of a proper constitution anyway.
>We still have the power, by virtue of our numbers, to enforce our will.
Depends on whom you mean by "we" - most people think and vote the way they do because the rich people control their world-view in a way which keeps them scared and stupid. So they vote for the lizards because they're afraid that the wrong lizards will get in (pace Douglas Adams).
I, of course, am not stupid - heaven forefend - but since being not-stupid makes me a member of a small political minority in the modern British world, I AM pretty fucking scared.
>> So in general, it's now a requirement that IE (all curent versions), Firefox, Chrome and Safari are fully supported by any public-facing website.
Damn. I was hoping that this announcement meant that my websites only had to pass the W3C validator, and as long as they pass, I can blame any browser-specific display issues on the browser developers, and walk away whistling a merry tune.
Isn't that the point of having standards - correct allocation of blame?
Re: 450m molehill?
>Do you need it spelling out?
No. I just wanted to use the phrase "intergalactic mega-moles", because that's exactly the kind of thing the internet was invented for.
Very relieved that I don't have moles like that in my garden.
Unless El Reg is trying to tell us that all comets are really spaceships used by intergalactic mega-moles to travel around the multiverse..? I do hope so.
Am I the only one here...
...who has never heard of any of these people?
Thank god someone is providing engaging entertainment to distract us from all the war, pestilence and grinding poverty that a lot of the world has to live with every day (some of it generously funded by my own tax-pounds).
This is encouraging - but can't boffins come up with some way of transporting BEER over an internet connection? Not only would this solve the inter-plant transport issue (using VPN) but it would also enable us to buy our own BEER directly from the brewery, by adding a sparkler tap adapter to a spare router ethernet port.
This new technology would dispense (sic) with transporting "packets" over the network layer, and transport "bottles" instead - and there might be problems with compatibility between European brewery BEER streams (in litres) and UK router output, which would have to be in pints.
But these are just engineering problems - surely if we can build a Large Hadron Collider, an internet-based Beer Transport Protocol shouldn't be beyond us? We could call it BTP/IP ...
(Mine's not the one I'm nicking the wallet from in the icon...)
sir/madam, for use of the excellent and under-used word "trub".
Some mistake surely...
>a possible flaw in its mobile application
Really? A mobile card payment app with possible security flaws? Blimey guv, whodathortit?
I think you ought to know...
....I'm feeling very depressed.
I wonder what sort of real people personalities (TM) would be appropriate for the botling hordes? Perhaps suitable neuro-patterns could be harvested from London commuters, or Glasto-goers..?
Beer, partly because it's Friday, but mostly because
a: if all goes according to plan, things like this will be doing my housework in a few years time;
b: if the plan goes horribly awry and the botlings take over, I'll need a feckin' beer.
Would it work on...
>It can only be on tape.
We should get Benny Hill to break in to Bluffdale and replace one of the tapes, leading to a diversionary war which would neatly disguise a heist of Fort Knox.
It's a better plot than the 2003 remake...
Would it help...
...to build a Faraday cage around my house?
Or would that just get such enormous currents induced in it that I would be grilled alive from all directions?
Re: Still vulnerable to hacking
>But only via the high speed lead projectile vector.
And don't forget the "failure to change the default admin password" vector.
Re: Not wanting to defend plod, but
>You'll get your computers, tablets, laptops etc back eventually....
And (depending on the nature of the investigation) your children.
But they won't pay for a new front door.
Re: 2nd Level
Yes! YES! I see the light!! Jesus H tapdancing Christ I have seeeeen the light!
(3 mins 15 secs)
"our own country"..?
Whose country exactly?
As a Brit I've long been resigned to the fact that anything is legal if the government (or a big enough business) does it, and anything is illegal if the government (or a big enough business) doesn't like me doing it - irrespective of what the actual law says. Democracy doesn't appear to have any real power to mitigate this reality, whatever the paperwork says. OK, you have a Bill of Rights and I don't, and you're a Citizen while I am only a Subject - but recent events indicate that the reality on the ground isn't that different.
And to anticipate the obvious brickbats - yes, I will very happily eat humble pie (and my hat) if I'm ever proved wrong by the successful prosecution of Tony Blair for war crimes, or Rupert Murdoch for anything at all.
Pint - partly because it's Friday, but mostly because as any fule kno, BEER is the only thing which makes the modern world bearable.
Re: Let's see if this triggers it
O noes - he said "banana"!! Now we're all f*cked...
Matt Bryant Silver Badge Commentard Rating
I am vaguely aware that large numbers of upvotes can gain a commentard the coveted Silver Badge status. But does El Reg count downvotes towards removal of said status?
Connect to 240V, insert penis..?
I'll pass on that particular pleasure, thankyou. There are some areas of personal safety that I won't risk even with double insulation. (Obvious icon)
> the main thing I can remember is the procedure for making a tasty dinner out of a live rabbit.
One hopes that this process began with putting the dear little bunny out of its misery? Or does this recipe come from the Ozzy Osbourne guide to bush tucker?
(OK, OK, I know he never really did the bat thing. Coat...)
Re: I hate to think what I'd get if facebook shut down.
It would be nice to think we'd all get a life.
Re: Was compuserve right all along?
IIRC they were the first subscription-funded network to avoid UK taxation by pretending they weren't doing business in the UK, when they clearly were. So in that sense, yes,
Pint - because my preferred social network is still the pub.
Re: Where have you been Murphy?!
All this discourse on world history is most enlighening, but somewhat missing the worst offence committed in this troll-ful post. Which is, of course:
" to use an Americanism, stop looking a gift horse in the mouth"
The poster may care to note that this "Americanism" was used at least as early as circa 400AD by St. Jerome, in his Letter to the Ephesians.
Glad we've settled that one.
At last, a useful plan for all the XP machines which will shortly be toast. Upvote!
>The two things banks really hate are customers and cash.
So as well as being quicker and more convenient than cards, phone apps, or other high-tech payment mechanisms, using cash also has the added bonus of annoying the banks - result!
RE: ISS launch
Fair comment - though intuitively I would expect the lateral velocity would make a safe re-entry rather unlikely, given the flammability of your average paper plane. Unless the very gradual transition from near-vacuum to full atmosphere would provide enough gentle drag for something as low-mass as a paper plane to re-enter without burning up..? Any spacey scientists out there with a good answer for this one?
Re: Sort your own mess out first..
>the reasoning goes something like "Amazon are about to create a thousand jobs somewhere in the UK.."
Yes, and the same reasoning goes "...and in the process they will send a few hundred small British businesses to the wall because, being unable to offshore their corporation tax liabilities, these businesses will be unable to compete with Amazon on price."
The price of buying from Amazon is that the government has less money to spend on schools, hospitals, police, defence etc. I hope you think that's worth the fiver you saved by buying your latest bit of iBollocks from Amazon instead of from your local (or web-based) independent British retailer. I agree that it's the government's job to make tax laws which work, but we have a role to play too, in choosing who we do business with.
In fact, our politics is now so fucked up that choosing where we spend our money is probably a more effective way of changing things that voting.
You're not fooling anyone ...
... by calling it "vinyl wrap" - it's obviously sticky-back plastic.
Mine's the one with the Blue Peter badge on the lapel...
Re: Cloudy truth
>>All advantages and drawbacks of "the Cloud" can be concisely explained simply by replacing "the Cloud" with "someone else's computer".
That's the one going in my sig - upvote!
Fair point, but...
>>Brand's an idiot. A pseudo intellectual without a real understanding of how business works.
Maybe so - but many of us would argue that business is an idiot which has no interest in how people or society work. Which is why business should not be allowed to dominate people and society in the way that it currently does, any more than Brand should be allowed to chair a merchant bank.
You think you're having a bad time...
...not getting manuals with your software. How do you think I feel - I used to earn a decent living writing the bloody things. I'm a relic of a bygone age.
No "The Doctor's Wife"???
Head and shoulders above the lot. No disrespect to Davies, Moffat et al, but Neil Gaiman is in a different league.
That is all.
The REAL Climate Change angle
The sun is not the cause of climate change on earth - rather the reverse. As any fule kno, these changes in the solar atmosphere are caused by humans building lots of windmills, which are gradually blowing the corona away, and will eventually cause the sun to go nova on our ass.
But at least when we go, we'll all have a lovely tan.
Plus ça ne change jamais
>>This happened over 2 weeks ago and the price of bitcoin still continues to rise:
1: that there's always money in illegal drugs and guns, just like there is in legal drugs and guns, even though it gets stolen quite often from buyers and sellers in both markets;
2: that an offer of a free lunch will always find takers, no matter how many times it turns out to be a shit sandwich.
Re: What skills?
>>I'm especially proud of the Bayesian Inference Engine I built on my Pi to run the heating.
So that's where I've been going wrong - I've been using my Pi to control the gas boiler! Any suggestions for where I can buy a Bayesian Inference Engine, and how many cylinders it should have to heat a 4-bed semi?
Mine's the one with the gravy stain, cos I keep a Pi in my pocket...
>>To him, making the hardware work for TheGreatUnwashed[tm] was what was hot & heavy.
In which case, it's a shame that he insisted his company's products should be so grossly overpriced, thus ensuring that the GreatUnwashed[tm] wouldn't ever get to use them.
And speaking as one who's been greatly unwashed for many decades, I'm disturbed to find I'm breaching someone's trademark - any clues on who registered that one? Should I be expecting a large boot at my front door any time soon?
Caring for the planet
So we'll be seeing Clanger picket-lines protesting at efforts by intergalactic megacorporations to frack for soup..? Up with this sort of thing!
An irrelevant sideshow, albeit a dangerously distracting one
Fracking is not the freakin' issue. We need to talk about carbon. That is all.
I'll upvote this...
... for introducing me to the word "whegs".
All this talk of solar panels panels and sophisticated electronics is all very well, but...
...please can someone answer the most important question, which is: am I safer wearing my tinfoil hat, or taking it off?
I wish the compulsive categorisers of the modern world would stop using the phrase "adult content" when they mean "sex", "erotica" or "pornography". Speaking as an adult (in years if not mentality), I have many interests, and only one of them involves the kind of content under discussion here.
Small wonder that the youth are completely obsessed with sex - they think it's all that adults are supposed to be interested in.
Also, the word "adultery" is unhelpful here too.
Something should be done. By someone. Immediately.
Re: Switch Labelling
Agree completely with the need to dramatise things up a bit. Especially after attending this a couple of weeks ago:
The show was MC'd by one of the top Jodrell Bank boffins, and just before he introduced the headline act (which involved projecting films onto the Lovell telescope dish), he used the site walkie-talkie to issue the immortal instruction "Telescope to Show Position". Whereupon the dish stopped looking upwards and was trundled round to give optimum audience experience:
If they'd had a charity auction for the opportunity to issue that instruction, I would have bid muchly.
>the ready acceptance of high quality Science Fiction as suitable viewing fodder for the masses
By which I assume you mean the masses who could afford a TV set in the 1950s? I would imagine that was a pretty middle-class slice of the population, so probably educated and (unlike the modern middle classes) somewhat disposed towards reading, thinking, and considering complicated ideas.
Which is not to say that the working classes of the time weren't similarly disposed - again unlike their modern equivalents. But not many of them could afford a telly.
Beer because it's Friday, and all the folks who made all the excellent, thought-provoking, intelligent TV of my childhood deserve one. What a shame it's all gone so horribly wrong since... (Where's the grumpy old man icon?)
Re: Was it colder then?
>We used to play games in the abandoned ... pillar boxes
You must have been a *very* small child at the time!
I think pill-boxes were/are a rural thing - I only started to notice them when I moved out of the city, and there are plenty left, particularly at spots where roads cross rivers or canals. They were, after all, built to last.
I also played on many "bombsites" in my 60s childhood - though on reflection I think most of these were slum-clearances of the 50s and 60s, not actual bomb craters. Manchester wasn't anywhere near as badly peppered as London, or other industrial centres like Coventry.
Mine's the duffle coat with the mittens sewn onto a string running between the sleeves...
...is AFAIK an mash-up of North Staffs Poly and one or two of the old FE colleges in Stafford. There's a large site on the edge of Stafford, as well as the old Poly site in Stoke.
I went to Keele too, but I don't think it counts as an alma mater cos there weren't no latin spoke there in my day.
Are we back to the poo-throwing here?
Re: Bring back the cash economy!
> Don't lie. The council have no obligation to accept £800 in 2p pieces.
I'm not lying - I knew at the time that they'd have been within their rights to refuse it, but I think the person at the pay-desk was (surprise surprise) not trained to this level of detail about her job. And I think the council needed the money.
Mind you, I felt so sorry for her afterwards that I went out and bought her a box of chocolates. There's no point in kicking the little people for the sins of the system.
Actually I think I am lying in one respect - it was only about 300 quid, not 800. But it did happen.
Bring back the cash economy!
For years I've used cards only for two purposes: online purchases (credit card) and withdrawing cash from a machine firmly attached to a High St clearing bank (debit card). Withdrawls are generally in amounts sufficient to keep me going for a week or so, so the odd day of outage isn't a problem - especially because when one bank's machine is down, there's another bank just along the street I can go to instead.
Everything bought in person is with cash, up to a value where cheques or bank transfers are acceptable, maybe 500 quid or so. I've even been known to buy a second-hand car with four grand in used 20s. (And come to think of it, I've also been known to pay an 800-quid council tax bill in 2p pieces - but that's what you get if you make me angry.)
Cash is brilliant - you never have to wait for it to be authorised, no-one can nick it without you noticing, and no advertising targetters or police-state-surveillors know what you spend your money on. IIRC cards were originally sold to us on the basis that carrying a card was safer than carrying cash, because you could get mugged and have your wallet nicked. But now you can lose far more by having your card cloned or your account hacked - and you can still get your wallet nicked, except now they have an incentive to pull out your fingernails one by one until you tell them your pin number.
Also, I hear the government disapprove of people using cash, so it's worth doing just to annoy them.
NB - please note that the word "cash" is obsolete usage - the proper term is "beer tokens".
Lovely thought, but
... I fear we will await the surgical removal of Fred Goodwin's pension for a good while yet.
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