* Posts by Chris Evans

377 posts • joined 27 Jun 2008

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NASA tried turning lost spacecraft STEREO-B off and on again... but it didn't work. True story

Chris Evans
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More info please!

I lot well explained about what went wrong but very little about how "NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN)." was used. I think it means that DSN managed to pick up the weak signals that tell them the current status. What will be really interesting to know is do they think they can send commands to bring it back more under control and how will they do that!

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NIST spins atomic gyroscope to allow navigation without GPS

Chris Evans
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dead reckoning without a starting referencence would be useless

"'dead reckoning' navigation, which measures change of position without reference to landmarks or start" Not true. There may be a very few circumstances where you only need to know where you are relative to your start but normally Dead Reckoning is used relative to a known starting point. Mariners take a known starting point on their maps and calculate from that. I'm struggling to think of a use without a known starting point... Here's one: you are in the dessert you do not know where you are and you want to get out. You could use dead reckoning to ensure you don't go round in circles and head off in the direction you think a town or road might be.

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IPv6 tipping point

Chris Evans
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"which is incompatible with IPv4"

This is not my area of expertise but I know enough to say that saying "[IPv6) is incompatible with IPv4" is a misleading over simplification.

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NASA test foiled by rocket shaking power cord loose from camera

Chris Evans
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Re: Not "...shooting in slow motion"

Just remembered I've heard them called 'high speed' cameras, which seems very appropriate!

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Chris Evans
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Not "...shooting in slow motion"

They shoot at a much higher frame rate than normal and that then allows them to replay the frames at a normal rate which looks like slow motion.

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Olympics bans GIFs

Chris Evans
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The IOC is losing it!

I'm a great fan of most of the Olympics and was a GamesMaker at London2012. It was one of the best experiences of my life. But I do find some of the IOC's petty rules takes a bit of a shine off of it. On Sunday there was a Radio4 discussion on the Olympics and one commentator said that sports should only be included if the Olympics was the pinnacle of that sport. e.g. No Golf, Tennis or Football this makes sense to me. The purists idea that competitors should all be amateur is never going to happen and rarely happened in the past anyway. #Rio2016 Go #TeamGB

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The dev-astating truth: What's left to develop? Send in the machines

Chris Evans
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"The Last Program" you will ever need.

There was a program called something like "The Last Program", it was certainly advertised as the last program you would ever need. This was about 25 years ago....

Historian Francis Fukuyama is looking a bit foolish now and I think rumours of DevOps demise are exaggerated.

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Death of 747 now 'reasonably possible' says Boeing

Chris Evans
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Landing Slots! & ETOPS

I thought that one of the reasons of Wide bodied jets like the 747 were favoured by the airlines was the limited landing slots at popular Airports. Popular routes get a 747 to the 'hub' and smaller planes used to feed in and out I suspect most air travel expansion in recent years has not been on the popular routes. It would be good to hear how that aspect fits into current and projected travel.

ETOPS

"Engines Turn Or Passengers Swim"

I like it, have an upvote!

ETOPS "Extended-range Twin-engine Operational Performance Standards". ETOPS applies to twins on routes with diversion time more than 60 minutes at one engine inoperative speed.

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UK South East Coast Ambulance slammed for creaking emergency dispatch IT

Chris Evans
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Coverage.

SECAM cover: Brighton & Hove, East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent, Surrey, and North East Hampshire

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Ad viewability worsens

Chris Evans
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Ad blocking success or other metric?

Are they effectively reporting the installation and success rate of ad blockers or is there something else that reduces 'viewabilty' as well?

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Samsung deals out microSD-crushing faster fingernail flash cards

Chris Evans
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Random access filing?

I wonder if UFS will be better for use as an operating storage device. i.e. for use by next generation devices that replace things like a Raspberry Pi or Pine64!

SD cards are less than ideal.

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4-day Fasthosts outage: Customers' sites go TITSUP

Chris Evans
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Depends on their size!

To some small businesses £60 a month is a lot.

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Dolphin fans freak, blast browser's bumbling bundles of bloatware

Chris Evans
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ElReg spouting business gobbledygook!

"Reached out", "Moving forward" etc. What horrible big business gobbledygook phrases! Does ElReg you really wish to portray such a faceless disinterested image?

http://wadds.co.uk/2015/11/11/business-jargon-love-hate-words-phrases-avoid/

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ITU okays another TV spec

Chris Evans
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compression jpeg artifacts

1080p with low compression i.e.few jpeg artefacts, would give a good enough picture for me. Broadcasters are skinflints and won't give good quality unless they can charge you more.

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Linux letting go: 32-bit builds on the way out

Chris Evans
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Re: what about RPi?

"When AArch64 takes over ARM, then we'll be having a similar discussion " I expect there to be billions of 32bit ARM systems being produced for many years to come, the IoT isn't going to go significantly 64bit for many years if ever. There are still many 8bit systems being produced!

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By Jove! NASA's Juno prepares to slip into orbit around Jupiter

Chris Evans
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Home significant a speed change?

"change Juno’s velocity by 1,212 miles per hour (542 metres a second)" My first thought was is that dropping the speed say by half or what. According to Wikipedia it was approaching Jupiter at 74,000 m/s so less than a 1% change which seems remarkable!

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We'll smash probe into comet 300 million miles away for kicks, er, sorry, ... for science

Chris Evans
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High speed smash?

I was thinking the landing would be at low speed but then spotted that it is orbiting the comet and is not geostationary so whilst the vertical seep may be negligible the horizontal speed is probably high and it will crash into a mountainside at its orbiting speed

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Thunder struck: Apple kills off display line

Chris Evans
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Re: Those...

The full quote is better: "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

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EPO president caught threatening independent appeal board

Chris Evans
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Why can't they just fire him?

Surely someone has the power to fire him. A good article would explain what is necessary to dismiss him or if it isn't possible report why not. I've read umpteen ElReg article about Battistelli but can't recall any mention. It reminds of Katrina Percy, chief executive of Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust who refuses to resign despite a number of damming reports. The fact that both of them are refusing to go confirms they need to go.

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Cygnus spacecraft on fire

Chris Evans
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IRONY

'...pushed earthward for an ironic fiery disposal'

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The Microsoft-LinkedIn hookup will be the END of DAYS, I tell you

Chris Evans
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Weeping shareholders!

If I was a Microsoft shareholders I'd have my head in my hands weeping!

I read an article a while back that explained big companies like Microsoft think they have to always continue to get bigger so when their main market becomes mature and stops growing they try and expand by buying up comparatively new companies. This almost never works. They can't get their head around managing a shrinking business and squander the cash they have that should be returned to shareholders. I suspect Apple will fall into this trap in a few years time.

Now if I was LinkedIn shareholder I'd have a big grin, though as I never thought anyone would be so stupid as to pay $26Bn for it I'm not a shareholder!

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Freeze, lastholes: USB-C and Thunderbolt are the ultimate physical ports

Chris Evans
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Smaller network plug than RJ45 please!

"Wireless is nifty, but wired is and always will be better. As for connector types, there will be plenty of upgrades to come. I just hope they're not smaller"

Well I wish there was a smaller wired network connector than RJ45 particularly in height! Much of the connector is only mechanical.

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TeamViewer beefs up account security after rash of PC, Mac hijacks

Chris Evans
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Build in better security

One of the problems is the use by "We are phoning from Microsoft and we have noticed a problem with your computer scammers" This is not my field but surely there could make it more difficult for the scammers. e.g. have the IP address of any remote access to be logged by TeamViewer with a block on using anonymising etc. Also a simple warning "Warning if you are using this as result of an unsolicited call it probably is a scam" that users need to answer with at least three key presses YES to.... I'm sure better brains than mine could improve things a lot.

Last time "Microsoft Support" got me to install TeamViewer I managed to keep them on the phone for over half an hour before they twigged I was on to their scam.

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Microsoft's Windows Phone folly costs it another billion dollars

Chris Evans
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Re: Probably cheaper

"write-offs for tax purposes" I suspect most of the cost in buying Nokia would have been 'Goodwill' not IPR of fixed assets. In the UK writing off goodwill does not save any tax. I expect the US is the same.

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Twitter expands beyond 140 characters

Chris Evans
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Rearranging the deck chairs!

I do wish them well but it sounds like a classic case of rearranging the deck chairs whilst the ship is sinking!

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Android might be on the way to the Raspberry Pi

Chris Evans
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Not a problem!

It would only be a problem if it hindered Raspbian and the other OSs etc. I can't see it doing that.

I've no use for it myself.

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Florida man, Chinese biz fined $48k, $35m on mobe signal jam raps

Chris Evans
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Re: Couldn't call in an emergency?

There's also pedestrians, people who live or work on the route, some alarm systems, some IoT etc. that would be effected!

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Google-backed solar electricity facility sets itself on fire

Chris Evans
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Re: Predicting Problems. Convex?

Having a safeguard mirror that was slight convex in one or both axis would distribute the light over an even larger area.

But the main problem would be the necessary area that would need safeguarding, it would include a lot of the tower structure as cables will be running all the way down the tower. This would significantly increase the weight and the wind resistance requiring a stronger tower. Sensitive parts near the designed 'light collection' point should though be protected.

There could also be a system that checks the main collector is getting the light level expected and set off an alarm if not, Also it could unfocus the beam if not corrected within an appropriate time scale.

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Violin makes friends in APAC

Chris Evans
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Daisey-wheel?

I must be missing something. What has a photo of a Daisey wheel got to do with the story?

I've tried thinking laterally, backwards and upside down!

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Ofcom serves up an extra helping of airwaves for Wi-Fi

Chris Evans
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A little and late!

An extra 25% capacity in one band is probably only about 10% overall and 'In a few years' time.

Data growth will far outstrip this increase:-(

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Super-slow RAID rebuilds: Gone in a flash?

Chris Evans
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Naff table

They have a column for TBs, GBs & MBa as well as Seconds, Minutes and Hours!

Why?

One column for capacity and one time is all we need or don't they think we know 1TB is 1000GB?

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IBM's Internet of Things brainbox foresees 'clean clothes as a service'

Chris Evans
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Circular economy!

'clean clothes as a service' is part of the "Circular economy" idea.

The more I read about it the more I believe it is the only way mankind will survive into the next century.

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

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Barclays.net Bank Holiday outage leaves firms unable to process payments

Chris Evans
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Apology fail!

"and we would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused.”

should be

"and we would like to apologise for THE inconvenience caused.”

'Any' plays the problem down. It is best not look like you're wheedling out of it.

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Daft draft anti-car-hack law could put innocent drivers away for life

Chris Evans
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Re: alter

The key thing is WHO can authorize the alteration. If it is the owner of the vehicle then that seems to be to be the correct situation and no problem.

Rather like the UK act that covers misuse of computers!

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Ex-Apple gurus' elusive Android phone coming to UK next month

Chris Evans
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Re: Lollipop?

"Marshmallow was released 6 months ago." Yes but it is only available on top of the range phones.

I went phone shopping for my wife earlier this month and IIRC the cheapest phone to buy unlocked with Marshmallow was over £250.

The shop assistant did say that Marshmallow would probably eventually appear for the Motorola Moto G she bought!

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Irish researchers sweep smartphones clear of super bugs

Chris Evans
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Re: A la les chickens

"won't this just lead to yet more highly-resistant bacteriological strains evolving?"

Not necessarily. Bacteria will always try and adapt to survive but they don't always do so. I'm thinking of Silver, its antibacterial properties don't seem to have diminished over hundreds of years!

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Chris Evans
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Sounds very promising!

I just hope they don't find a gotcha to stop commercial implementation.

I wonder what other usages there are apart from phones and tablets!

Pity no time scales for practical usage were given.

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NZ Pastafarians joined in noodly wedlock

Chris Evans
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Each to their own!

and something to tell the grandchildren but I do wonder if any Pastafarians don't have their tongue firmly in their cheek!

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Intel takes aim at Arduino with US$15 breadboard

Chris Evans
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Re: Still does not compete on price

Intel aren't wanting to ship lots of development boards but the chip. So it is the 100,000+ chip cost that is the important thing.

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Man pleads guilty for serving white hat with DoS, swearbot, sex toys

Chris Evans
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And who is RWM?

Confusing.

I'm guessing someone at mccrewsecurity.com.

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Google-funded study concludes: Make DMCA even more Google-friendly

Chris Evans
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OSP = Online service provider

Not my area but I'm presuming OSP = Online service provider?

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Tesla books over $8bn in overnight sales claims Elon Musk

Chris Evans
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UK price.

$35,000 sounds not to bad in the UK except whilst $35,000 = £24,500 Tesla [1] want £48,500 + £10,500 VAT. It doesn't cost £24,000 to ship!

[1]https://www.teslamotors.com/en_GB/models/design

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India orders 770 million LED light bulbs, prices drop 83 per cent

Chris Evans
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Re: Who's paying the piper?

No LED street lights around here but almost all the pedestrian crossing now use them for the lights the cars see, the green/red cross now/don't cross and the button LED the pedestrians press, they are all very bright in particular the red LED in the button the pedestrians press I find quite a glaring distraction as a motorist or cyclist.

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Amazon to bad cable slingers: USB-C yourself out

Chris Evans
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Why the explicit exception?

I would have thought that they'd have a catch all "All products should comply with the appropriate standards", there going to have a very long list otherwise and if something isn't on the list enforcing a catch all becomes more difficult.

I recall one site (I think it might be Amazon) that says you can't list anything illegal! Which seems a very stupid condition to me, it's as if their T's&C's override the law

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Met plod commissioner: Fraud victims should not be refunded by banks

Chris Evans
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Re: Refunds hide fundamentally insecure system

Certainties in life: Death, Taxes and Theft inc. card fraud

"Dealing with cash is a definite, rather high, cost."

Probably less than fraud or can you cite otherwise?

"Also, doesn't the merchant pay a small cut of each transaction? Cash doesn't provide that."

Credit/debit card Merchant service companies charge me between 2.5 and 4% so not such a small cut!

For cash, businesses do get charged a handling fee by the banks. My bank charges 0.5% to pay in bank notes, coins are a lot more. Not sure about withdrawals.

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Hands on with the BBC's Micro:Bit computer. You know, for kids

Chris Evans
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Designed by committee?

It seems to have been designed by committee which I suspect is one of the reasons it was delayed so long.

I do wish the project well but with the Pi Zero now available I think they missed the boat.

Also items that are given away are not valued and often discarded quickly. Thomas Paine: "What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly:"

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Chris Evans
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Re: Old photo caption

Yes definitely an Acorn Atom.

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Western Digital spins up a USB disk just for the Raspberry Pi

Chris Evans
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USB not SATA

"interested to see the SATA interface"

Whilst the info on the WD website is very sparse and the photos very small, you can just make out the USB 3 socket on the motherboard and the corresponding plug on the cable kit.

From the WD site:

"Native USB 7mm HDD – slim drive"

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Lithium ion batteries banned from passenger aircraft holds

Chris Evans
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Is that a quote? Sounds like from the film Airplane but google doesn't confirm.

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