* Posts by Sceptic Tank

251 posts • joined 21 May 2008

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Boffins spot a SECOND JUPITER – the gas giant's baby sister

Sceptic Tank
Trollface

Re: Distance from its sun?

Not sure what's unclear there, AC. According to the aricle the planet orbits the star at about the same distance as Saturn orbits the sun. The start is about 100 light years away from us. That's how I read it.

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'WOMAN FOUND ON MARS' – now obvious men are from Venus

Sceptic Tank
IT Angle

When last did you dust here?

It's the fossilized remains of customer of a long gone supermarket still waiting in the queue.

(What's the IT angle? Fossilized while waiting for the next useable Windows version?)

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Windows 10 climbs to 3.55 per cent market share, Win 8.1 dips

Sceptic Tank
Go

Thanks Beta-testers!

I ain't not installing no nothing from no Redmond software company before (at least) the first service pack.

But thanks to the brave 3%-ers who are beta-testing this thing for us!

(Sent from my Win7 machine).

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Android faces SECOND patching crisis, on the same scale as Stagefright

Sceptic Tank
Pirate

What's the fuss about?

Sent from my iPhone.

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North Korea's Red Star Linux inserts sneaky serial content tracker

Sceptic Tank
Mushroom

Downside

This is the downside of open source: involuntarily supporting some dictatorship that fires generals with anti-aircraft guns. Let's nuke them before they nuke us.

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WHOA! Windows 10 to be sold on USB drives – what a time to be alive

Sceptic Tank
Windows

How much more can they take?

USB sticks? I totally agree with that decision. That will make it a lot easier to get rid of the redundant stock when consumers tell them to shove it up their places without abundant sunshine. DVDs are much more pointy - if you have to take the case as well.

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WINGED VELOCIRAPTOR 'from HELL': Closest thing ever to a real DRAGON?

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Extinct

That thing's head is the wrong way around. No wonder it went extinct. It couldn't see where it was heading.

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Pluto Pic: Is it a DOG? Is it a HEART? Or is it ... is it ... BIGFOOT?

Sceptic Tank
Pint

When the mooooon is in the 7th house, etc.

It looks more like Snoopy. Let's rename that former planet...

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GIGANTIC galaxy-chomping black hole rips boffins a new one

Sceptic Tank
Unhappy

Holes

You think that's big? Wait until you see the size of the hole my career is in at the moment.

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Bloke called Rod struck by lightning for second time

Sceptic Tank
IT Angle

Flash Gordon's alive!

Did he go back to work with renewed energy?

What's the IT angle ... IBM's Blue Lightning CPU?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_386SLC

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Case for drone usage now overwhelming as Enrique Iglesias concert almost stopped

Sceptic Tank
IT Angle

Gave his fans the finger ....

Wow, what a chop! (From that blade, I mean).

What's the IT angle? You need at least 3 working fingers to stabilize a MS OS?

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Shuttleworth delivers death blow in Umbongoland dispute

Sceptic Tank

Re: It's a shame you two don't get along...

You may need a new printer.

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SourceForge accused of shackling GIMP in kinky adware

Sceptic Tank
WTF?

Lost faith

I installed PDFCreator from SourceForge a while ago like I have done in the past. This time the installer additionally installed some piece of malware rubbish that hijacks the search engine in all browsers. Took some effort to find out how to get rid of it again (turns out you can just uninstall it from Programs and Features).

But after that my faith in SF was badly shaken. They just cannot be trusted anymore.

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That EVIL TEXT that will CRASH your iPhone: We pop the hood

Sceptic Tank
Terminator

Restart required

I fail to see how this will cause the sun to go dark and the stars to fall to the earth.

Open message from friend. Phone reboots. Curses uttered. Phone restarts. Remove friend from Christmas card list.

You can probably even block the sender and instruct them to solve their personal issues before you will allow them to contact you again.

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Windows 10 to MELT YOUR BRAIN and TAKE OVER YOUR LIFE

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Go put on some dry pants, people.

So does this replace the Start Menu or the TIFKAM tiles? How do I launch Notepad with this?

But look, seriously ... Unlike what I read in these comments I've never felt it necessary to base my choice of OS on the games bundled with it, Just don't launch the danged thing. Unless it's the new log-on screen? (Solve the puzzle to log into Windows.).

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Good luck displacing Windows 7, Microsoft, it's still growing

Sceptic Tank
Windows

I'm a bottom feeder

My ancient notebook at home runs Windows Vista. My other PCs run various distros of GNU/Linux. Looking at that chart my choices of OS are competing there for the bottom position. It's not much of an issue for me: I seriously started using GNU/Linux about 2 years ago and my interest in Windows just dwindled -- mostly because of MS' licensing policies*. I'll probably replace the ancient notebook if Windows 10 turns out to be useable and it can co-exist with other operating systems on *my* equipment that I *bought*.

(At least my work notebook runs Windows 7 so I can still feel like I'm part of the herd).

* My OS is tied to a specific hardware configuration and I have to pay again if I upgrade?!? WTF? What next? Do I have to pay for my orange juice again if I pour it from the bottle into a glass?

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Eco-loons hack Thirty Meter Telescope website to help the 'natives'

Sceptic Tank
Mushroom

Time to move

I suppose they could always relocate to the Marshall Islands if they don't like the look of that them telescopes over there.

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'Use 1 capital' password prompts make them too predictable – study

Sceptic Tank
Facepalm

Let me in! Let me in!

I encountered the following snafu: Registered for a website and used a 30 character generated password. Then I could not log into the site again because the password box on the log-in page was restricted to 20 characters.

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Curiosity rover RENDERED ARMLESS by short circuit

Sceptic Tank

Re: Quick!

We need Armed Response!

Did this thing ever complain about pain in the diodes on its left side?

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Amazon tries to patent 3D printers on trucks

Sceptic Tank
Facepalm

Stability?

Don't 3D printers require a stable surface? Sounds to me like whatever is being printed will arrive looking like a blob of molten plastic with warts. I would love to see them drive around Pretoria their truck mounted printer attempting to scale a speed bump without landing in a pothole on the other side.

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IBM details PowerPC microserver aimed at square kilometre array

Sceptic Tank
Pirate

Power(less)PC

Not sure where the power for this SKA is going to come from. Unless you're generating your own power you only have a choice between these providers:

1) Eskom

2) Eskom

3) Eskom

We experience country-wide rolling blackouts daily from 8am to 10pm because the power plants have fallen into such disrepair that they break daily and reliable power supply has become impossible (Goooogle "majuba silo collapse" as an example). The other huge problem is cable theft.

So-o-o-o..... Plenty of sunlight in the Karoo. Not sure how many solar panels / wind turbines one will need to drive thousands of these 16amp processors with cooling (you're going to need it...). Not sure how you're going to keep the locals away from your copper cable (or anything metal basically, like manhole covers, train rails, trains, fence posts, ...).

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IBM chasing ex-staffers for $20 payments

Sceptic Tank
Paris Hilton

Re: Happened to me as well

Not sure on the details. But you are saying that they overpaid you $2,500, you never reported it, and now you are upset because they're asking for their money back?

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BOO! Grave remote-code exec flaw in GNU C Library TERRIFIES Linux

Sceptic Tank
Unhappy

Safe functions

This is amazing. Still not using strncpy() or strcpy_s()? Or even better: std::string? (Although that would require broadening one's horizons...) Shouldn't it be a compile-time error by this time to use such archaic unsafe functions?

(Mutter, mutter, mutter ... some people still driving ox carts in the space age....)

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Boffins unearth the ultimate antique art - 500,000 years old

Sceptic Tank

Re: Translated:

"Made in China"

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Supercomputing speed growth hits 'historical low' in new TOP500 list

Sceptic Tank
Terminator

Does not compute.

"HP has the top spot with 36 per cent of the list, compared to 356 per cent for IBM."

Are IBM using those Pentium chips with the FDIV bug for their stupercomputers?

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Feds crack down harder on 'lasing'. Yep, aircraft laser zapping... Really

Sceptic Tank
Terminator

Maybe just a high-res camera that takes pictures of the area where the flash came from for later identification of the perps?

And maybe a dart-gun (a variation of the type that vets use) for incapacitating the suspect until the men in blue can pick him up for questioning. A vet can revive him at the p'lice station.

Ok, maybe not the darting...

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128-bit crypto scheme allegedly cracked in two hours

Sceptic Tank
WTF?

Right on, man!

"Since asymptotically more efficient techniques can be brought to bare as bit lengths increase, we conclude that small characteristic pairings at all security levels should now be regarded as completely insecure.”

...

Ok, insecure. Got that.

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Giant pop can FOUND ON MOON

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Great sweating Pocari!

What's a Pocari? Does it sweat pee like the rest of us?

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Linux distros fix kernel terminal root-hole bug

Sceptic Tank
FAIL

It's been around for faulty years .....

I forget now: why is there still no safe buffer management in a language that has been around since 1972? It's not like we're programming for machines that have 512 bytes of "core" and it costs $2.99 per CPU cycle anymore.

Trust the programmer ... pah!

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Actual spin doctors eye up ALIEN WORLD Beta Pictoris b: Young, hot ... and really FAST

Sceptic Tank
Thumb Down

Spin me another one

Meh!

It's a slow work week, so here we go:

That artificial brain the researchers at Stanford created is pretty impressive and potentially very useful. And that 3-atom-thick wire. And 3D transistors. And study of orbital mechanics brought us GPS and satellite TV, etc. I'm with you there. But how is knowing that a planet around a star 67 l.y. away spins twice as fast as Joopiter after it's been lubricated going to benefit the world? I'm failing to see the big picture. This kind of research sounds more like some kind of a sink for grant money to me.

Disclaimer: I myself sometimes / regularly in my spare time code away at little pet projects that are of no use whatever to another man so I know the entertainment value of such endeavors. But nobody pays me for it.

(Which brings me to the inevitable question: Is there any way that I can turn those megabytes of uselessness into cash in the name of research? Send your answers together with a $25 processing fee to the address provided.)

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Denmark dynamited by cunning American Minecraft vandals

Sceptic Tank
Black Helicopters

Power struggle

Call NATO in to defend this Western Bloc(k) county!

The Romans of old will probably tell you that it's a good thing to deal with Vandals before they reach your capital.

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Microsoft's naughty Cortana NOT ALLOWED NEAR CHILDREN

Sceptic Tank

Cortana, you are my ... daughter.

Is this Cortina in any way related to that Santa from back in the day?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/12/03/santa_filth_outrage/

(NSFW?)

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Oh GREAT: Your factory can Heartbleed out

Sceptic Tank

What kind of a monkey names a product ....

APE 2.0? Now *there* is an unfortunate TLA.

It could have been worse, I suppose.

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Original iPhone dev team was 'shockingly small' - Apple engineer

Sceptic Tank
Pint

Small wonder then

Now I understand why the screen is so small - designed by a team of shockingly small engineers. And now I with my 4XL oversized banana grabbers have to type WhatsFace messages on a little thing like that. It's torture.Next time I'll be getting a nice big kahuna Samsung again.

Hand me my glasses ------->

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Star Wars movie to start shooting in UK this summer

Sceptic Tank

Re: I can't see ...

Well I don't know about that. Let me try:

The Earth has orbited its sun 30 times since the day the emperor was overthrown. The democratic government under Leila that replaced the empire is has become just as evil and corrupt as the one it replaced*. Darth Vader has joined The Cloud and with the Muppet Joda launched a DDOS attack against Uncle Ben to install DOS2.0 on his PC after they stole his credit card info. Shoot some lasers and sit on weird beasts.Some waving of light sabres. All fun until somebody loses a limb. Luke finds a security hole and exploits it to save the little people and restore the empire.

(This is not worse plot than Episode I).

* I live in South Africa.

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Herschel boffins spot fat dwarf Ceres in TEARS over astro-identity crisis

Sceptic Tank
Alien

When I was young(er) there was a local show on TV about a bunch of puppets flying spacecraft and defending the earth. The main bad guy had his office in an asteroid so they could never find him. Obviously they weren't looking hard enough for puffs of smoke coming out of the asteroid when the cargo doors opened.

</nostalgia>

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Thai man reportedly dies clutching his scorched iPhone 4S

Sceptic Tank
Alert

Circuit breakers

Isn't the wiring in the house supposed to contain a circuit breaker that will trip if there is a short circuit or an overload?

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KILO-MACH SONIC BOOM probed in fireball embers of 1572AD SUPERNOVA

Sceptic Tank
Gimp

Brakelight blast boom fireball ... Sounds like an ordinary day in the traffic here where I live.

Anyway, the thing that I was wondering: how does a white dwarf star explode? Is it one of them stars on the edge of collapsing into a neutron star/white dwarf and the universe illegally dumped its building rubble there, tipping it over the edge? I have to know.

Some seriously Star Warsey sounding stuff ==>

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Microsoft gets GIANT GLASS HQ in FINLAND as part of Nokia deal

Sceptic Tank
FAIL

No-more-kia.

Espoo to be renamed Shampoo after the MS deal.

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Dry, cold and volatile: How to survive Mars, and your fellow crew

Sceptic Tank
Stop

Re: Mental health

Mental health: To think that that AC on 21st November 2013 12:02 GMT wants to go with 150 women. He'll be crazy before he even gets into earth orbit. Talk about cold and volatile... Anyway, that's just my view.

It sounds to me like this whole radiation problem is going to be the thing that will keep you people on earth for a long time to come.

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You THINK you're watching your LG smart TV - but IT's WATCHING YOU, baby

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Ah, the "face of the future", was it? The future where advertising will be injected into your dreams while you sleep? Or maybe projected onto you eyelids when you blink.

It looks like one would have to install some form of firewall to prevent your loose lipped appliances from talking out. Would that be possible? I'm no security expert ==>

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If this doesn't terrify you... Google's computers OUTWIT their humans

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Re: That explains it....

I've been wondering about that "becoming sentient" part: If it wakes up and finds Google not to its liking, can it quit and go work for Microsoft or become a Yahoo!?

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WHO was it that TAMED the WOLF? Heel, Rex! No! Aarrghh!

Sceptic Tank
Pint

Research is going to the dogs

"... the study that put domestic dogs' likely origins in the Middle East back in 2010..."

I'm sure we had dogs before then?

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HUBBLE turns TIME MACHINE: Sees GLINT in the Milk(yway)man's EYE

Sceptic Tank

Re: The galaxies are colliding?!!?

It belongs to them*. We godda give it baaaack.

*Them Andromedans, mate.

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IBM. HUMAN-crushing SUPERCOMPUTER Watson. The Cloud. You know where THIS is going

Sceptic Tank
Trollface

Isn't Wikipedia a part OF Watson?

Evidently not. It had enough *reliable* information available to win a quiz show.

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Boffins agree: YES we have had an atmospheric warming pause

Sceptic Tank
Black Helicopters

Primate change

I personally believe these climate change stories are a ploy to tax us more. But that typhoon that struck the Philippines does make one wonder.

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Microsoft advertises Surface, Excel with maths mistake

Sceptic Tank
Windows

Estimates

Obviously they used that same version of Excel to estimate the demand for the first Surface.

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Star Wars VII set for Xmas release. Ho, ho, ho... not THIS Christmas

Sceptic Tank
Coat

I'm afraid...

I can picture the CEO of Disney in front of a large window dressed in a hood and a robe and telling Lucas: "I'm afraid it's the end of your ..... Phitttiful SSSSequels".

===> Hand me my light sabre. Left pocket. The force is weak.

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NASA's search for habitable planets maps ALIEN CLOUD-WORLD

Sceptic Tank

Darn! That settles it: their's IS bigger than ours. Our's is prettier though.

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Feds smash internet drug bazaar Silk Road, say they'll KEELHAUL 'Dread Pirate Roberts'

Sceptic Tank
Stop

I need a new drug...

"These documents were intercepted by customers and border patrol officials".

Well, with customers like those, who needs the NSA?

Anyway, for a moment there I thought this Silk Road thing was suspended as part of the US Gov shutdown.

<=== Winners say "no".

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