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* Posts by Neil Barnes

1795 posts • joined 18 Apr 2007

Alien condoms. Stuck to the wall. That's entirely normal, y'know

Neil Barnes
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Childcatcher

Gloo...

I'm over six feet, but I'd have difficulty using that top row...

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Getting to the BOTTOM of the great office seating debate

Neil Barnes
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All very 'pretty'

But what are those chairs like to *sit* in - given that I spend a third of my life with my arse parked at a desk, I want a decent chair to park it in...

When I was a project manager, one thing that was always ignored was office seating. Fifty bucks a seat if we were lucky. I howled to spend more on decent seats and was always knocked back, even when I pointed out that one or two days lost to backache would have paid for the chair. Inevitably we returned a few months later to get some better chairs in...

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TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab

Neil Barnes
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Black Helicopters

And here we go again...

Using encryption labels you as a criminal.

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SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis

Neil Barnes
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SpaceX's cheaper Dragon capsule has room for seven

Nice picture, but who's driving this thing? Where's the bloody steering wheel?

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Drones CAN'T deliver goods ... oh. Air traffic control system backed by NASA, you say?

Neil Barnes
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Black Helicopters

cloud capability for controlling drones in an airspace

Instrument rated, then - none of this VFR rubbish for these guys!

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Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen

Neil Barnes
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Re: They need Neil Armstrong

The thing about landings is that you should endevour to have the same number as you have takeoffs.

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Neil Barnes
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Pirate

anchoring itself in place with harpoons

"Aaar, thar she blows, Cap'n Ahab, the Great White Comet!"

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Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s

Neil Barnes
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Re: I was there too

Couple of years younger than you, Mike, and in the UK - but I worked as an engineer and project manager in the BBC for thirty-odd years, all around the world.

I still maintain that there is enough talent in the UK to almost fill three, maybe four channels. The rest is crap, repeats, and recycled shows - it's depressing how often the same show is franchised to other broadcasters.

Meh.

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Neil Barnes
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Re: Some things so need reinventing

Well, if you're so smart, *you* tell us what colour it should be.

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Neil Barnes
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Surely the function of a TV is to show pictures

It needs a very simple interface: button to turn it on (with a rotary bit to set the volume), row of buttons to select a channel, and, er, that's it.

Once you've started watching there is absolutely no need for any sort of interface that doesn't use your eyes and your ears. Remove controls with a zillion functions; delayed recording; film rental; on screen menus... not part of the requirement. They're fripperies that we've come to expect and of course they're rubbish; they're unnecessary.

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Every billionaire needs a PANZER TANK, right? STOP THERE, Paul Allen

Neil Barnes
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It's *got* a big engine.

What it's lacking is wings.

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LOHAN tin-rattles to a whopping £27,000 on Kickstarter

Neil Barnes
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Make that 561, Lester

Finally got my finger out to make a pledge... I want a patch for my flying suit. I promise a picture...

---> Flying suit, obviously.

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NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies

Neil Barnes
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Black Helicopters

Personae no gratae

Pinging 8.8.8.8 with 32 bytes of data:

Reply from 8.8.8.8: bytes=32 time=21ms TTL=42

Reply from 8.8.8.8: bytes=32 time=21ms TTL=42

Reply from 8.8.8.8: bytes=32 time=22ms TTL=42

Reply from 8.8.8.8: PNG

Reply from 8.8.8.8: PNG

Reply from 8.8.8.8: PNG

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Leak of '5 MEELLLION Gmail passwords' creates security flap

Neil Barnes
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Logged into gmail for the first time in a year

And found nothing other than offers for pizza, different pizza, and for some reason I don't understand, tea.

Changed the password anyway.

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Microsoft introduces text search … for videos!

Neil Barnes
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This looks remarkably like

something I saw demonstrated at IBC, maybe ten years ago: a self-indexing content aggregation system that indexed metadata and audio from bulk video stores. I don't recall how good its speech-to-text was, but I believe it read subtitles too if they were present in the video stream, which would have probably been a lot more accurate.

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Finally, a USEFUL smart device: Intel boffins cook up gyro-magneto-'puter bike helmet

Neil Barnes
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Re: Meh, like with most fanciful undergrad projects, they've not thought this one through...

No, I work in the other direction. Three miles underground on the end of a deep drill string is a horrible environment.

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Neil Barnes
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Re: Meh, like with most fanciful undergrad projects, they've not thought this one through...

No reason why, if competently designed. I build stuff that takes 10,000g accelerations. With lithium batteries, too.

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Neil Barnes
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Re: The impact detection could be useful

In the UK radio is not often used for other than gossip between flyers (many of the radios are illegally used and discipline is poor; the number who have the training and certification to use an air-band radio and can thus talk to ATC are vanishingly small).

I'm up there for peace and quiet; for the same reason I don't fly with a lawn-mower engine strapped to my back.

Others no doubt have different views.

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Neil Barnes
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Re: Solution in search of a problem

Except that it looks likely to be delayed. In particular, the UK government isn't happy.

I'm not sure I am, either - yet another bit of tech over which I have no control. Meh.

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Neil Barnes
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The impact detection could be useful

I fly paragliders. The last time I hit the ground hard there were people around, and just as well or I wouldn't be.

Don't want the music and calls, though, nor the requirement to talk to a mobile; the comms should be built in.

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IT jargon is absolutely REAMED with sexual double-entendres

Neil Barnes
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Re: So, your wife is a linguist?

She's been to Croydon.

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Boffins hunch over steaming cups of coffee to find HIDDEN SECRETS of caffeine

Neil Barnes
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Boffin

All that information, and yet strangely,

They never mentioned that you can also use caffiene to develop silver nitrate photography!

(Search 'caffenol').

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Alien Ninja Fembot Pirates vs the Jedi SAS Chuck Norris startroopers: RUMBLE

Neil Barnes
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Re: Special Circumstances?

Or an Orbital. Kinda hard to argue with an Orbital, though they do have vulnerabilities.

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Video: Dyson unveils ROBOTIC TANK that hoovers while you're out

Neil Barnes
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Boffin

Is it...

less than 1600W?

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Crack team weighs LOHAN's substantial box

Neil Barnes
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Re: "Seven" and "one"

Unfortunately, despite being Brazilian, she's of German descent...

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Neil Barnes
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"Seven" and "one"

Works in my house, too, Lester!

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Sex is great in books, lousy in apps, says Apple

Neil Barnes
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Headmaster

"We view Apps different than books or songs"

Perhaps they meant "We view Apps differently from books or songs"?

That Noah Webster has a lot for which to answer.

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Our Vulture 2 rocket spaceplane crammed with MORE POWER

Neil Barnes
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Actually, on a slightly more serious note

High G testing - you might want to tie a piece of string to the back end of this wee bolide and swing it around your head rather quickly, to simulate the launch forces.

Edit - the *front end* - the back will simulate the motor cutoff, but that will be a lower acceleration.

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Neil Barnes
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Coat

Just in case no-one's mentioned it, Lester

You might want to solder the batteries in!

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NASA clears zero-G 3D printer for mission to SPAAAAACE

Neil Barnes
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I trust they cannot be used to make copies of themselves

Or I, for one, will have to welcome our new Von Neumann overlords...

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Cave scrawls prove Neanderthals were AT LEAST as talented as modern artists

Neil Barnes
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Naughts and crosses

Doesn't say who won.

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Russia: SEXY LIZARDS which landed FROM SPACE are all DEAD

Neil Barnes
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Re: Geckos! Frozen Geckos!

@Evil Auditor

I can't comment on the flavour of frozen geckos, but I have tried iguana, and that tasted like chicken...

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Neil Barnes
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Geckos! Frozen Geckos!

Onna stick!

Half a dollar and I'm cutting my own throat!

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South Korea's top wireless carrier builds Internet of Eels

Neil Barnes
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Sensitive to their environment, eh?

How are they in hoverccraft?

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Virgin Media blocks 'wankers' from permissible passwords

Neil Barnes
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Re: PSN Home was even worse when it started ...

>> It was still possible to call people vvankers though, it just needed two Vs.

Hence the old saying "I vvant to be alone..." ?

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Neil Barnes
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Re: Merde!

Not even seen by the creator, I think? They're always entered into a password box and asterisked out, no? The only person who would see this list is the person who wrote it, and anyone ferreting around in the script code...

And if they're blocking them as partial words (I haven't checked the code) then that's everything from 'niggardly' to 'extravagant' banned, then.

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Love XKCD? Love science? You'll love a book about science from Randall Munroe

Neil Barnes
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Re: From this strip

And which produced this http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20140827 from the professors at Girl Genius!

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Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather

Neil Barnes
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When you accept that terrorism trumps privacy

You may as well give up; the terrorists have already won.

I've argued recently - here - that even recognising terrorism is both unnecessary and self-defeating. It converts a vague threat into a permanent state of paranoia, and allows politicians to allow liberties with *my* life that they wouldn't even consider with their own.

Yes, there are arguments that without the powers already used, the security services would not have been able to save us from ever-so-many violent and potentially fatal terrorist attacks... yet strangely, we are unable for 'operational reasons' ever to find out what these putative attacks were; nor do we see people in jail or exported from the country as a result except on very rare occasions.

When someone tells me that I must make all my personal details searchable at the whim of the state and without due process, I am being treated in the same way I might treat a three-year-old child. Worse, in that while both I and the child may have secrets we wish to keep, mine could be perfectly legal but socially or professionally embarassing - and the only person who knows which is me.

There's something repellent about a government agency which is emphatically *not* a government agency; an agency that is effectively grabbing data because it can; which operates on a 'daddy knows best' approach and which actively refuses to reveal its extent, its resources, or its results except in the vaguest terms. Secrecy is apparently approved for the powers that be.

And while I'm ranting: what is the basis for all this? According to David Anderson, QC, the UK's Independent Reviewer of Terrorist Legislation, in his 2011 report on the terrorism acts, an average of five people a year over the previous decade died in terrorist acts (most on July 7th 2005). An average of five people a year die from bee and wasp stings... an average of three thousand a year died in traffic incidents over the same time in the UK.

Could it be that we are looking at the wrong thing? There seems little doubt that there have been and probably still are people who are sufficiently irritated by what they see as the injustices of life that they will strike out against anything and anyone; who will travel half-way around the world to places where they can fight and see themselves as martyrs; who believe the fake promises of politically minded people who can persuade them to kill and die and suicide on the grounds of free entry to paradise; who will take arms against an innocent for the publicity effect. And yet, and yet...

We hear that what appears to be the work of one or two deranged people is just part of a huge global conspiracy against our freedom, our country, our work, our life - but we never hear details. We never see the court cases wherein these hidden conspirators are jailed or deported; where those responsible for attacks that never happened are jailed or deported; where... basically, we never hear anything.

But it's all right.

Daddy knows best.

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Ofcom will not probe lesbian lizard snog in new Dr Who series

Neil Barnes
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Ah yeah, but that's, like, real life, innit? <sniff> Nah't'a'mean?

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Neil Barnes
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Re: so annoying

"Dissolve them in acid."

"Strax!"

"Er, not dissolve them in acid."

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Neil Barnes
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Re: Priorities

Not really... how many people kiss their pets but would never consider kissing a human of the same sex?

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Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies

Neil Barnes
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Which is exactly what is required, no? Tiles offer nothing that the drop down from the address bar doesn't, with the added bonus that nosy co-workers, children, or the missus can't see what you've been up to.

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One step closer to ROBOT BUTLERS: Dyson flashes vid of VACUUM SUCKER bot

Neil Barnes
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I own a Hoover. It's a fridge... go figure.

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Neil Barnes
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Paris Hilton

Is a robot Dyson

still a robot hoover?

--> if I have to explain...

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Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM

Neil Barnes
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Re: I was thinking of another type of hologram

@ Sir Runcible

50% of the time the odd sock is because there's an extra, 50% because there's one missing.

We just don't know which event is which.

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Neil Barnes
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Re: I was thinking of another type of hologram

Only if either Achilles OR the tortoise are wearing the sock.

Obviously they can't both be wearing it, or they'd be superimposed.

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MEN WANTED to satisfy town full of yearning BRAZILIAN HOTNESS

Neil Barnes
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Re: Did Gabriel García Márquez know about this town?

I'm thinking of the women's group that follow Dionisio Vivo around in Louis de Berniere's 'Coca' trilogy.

I'll have to ask the missus - she's a Carioca.

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Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000

Neil Barnes
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Mushroom

Re: Hold My Beer, Watch This

Los Pollos Hermanos?

Nah, try Pollo de un Hombre Verdadero - they'll be able to launch themselves!

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Neil Barnes
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I once met a young lady in Kiev

who, while trying to persuade me of her charms in the matter of short-term negotiable affection, gave me the whole spiel about how her father was a senior officer at Baikonur.

Perhaps he could help?

Of course, it would require a trip back to Kiev to locate said lady...

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SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk

Neil Barnes
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Facepalm

Gee thanks, Space.com

For interest, here's the list of scripts that the site tries to run:

space

brightcove

onswipe

scorecardresearch

facebook

some random cloudfront

bizographics

exelator

twitter

intellitxt

parsely

servebom

sharethis

google-analytics

googletagmanager

googletagservices

qualtrics

akamaihd

googleusercontent

gstatic

facebook

Guess which of these I allow? Hint: none... I don't know why I bother with the interwebs.

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