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* Posts by Cthonus

105 posts • joined 9 Jul 2008

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Clara goes to the dark side, with dark secrets revealed in Dark Water

Cthonus

Re: Missy

Yeah. I prefer my Master to be as suave and sophisticated as Roger Delgado's. Proper devils like Fu Manchu never needed to girn to camera to look menacing, or ham it up like the infamous Zaroff or Soldeed death scenes...

I always though John Sim played the character as if he was brain damaged rather than truely, awesomely bad-ass.

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ICO to fine UNBIDDEN MARKETEERS who cause 'ANXIETY'

Cthonus

Given the number of calls I get per week I'd volunteer my services as an enforcer for free at weekends.

I wouldn't even claim expenses for the baseball bat, or the portable electrodes.

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Virgin Media DOUBLE-PUNCHED by BSkyB AND BT over ad fibs

Cthonus

Ham-fisted bun vendors

"shouldn't hoodwink customers into thinking that elements of its bundled packages were being offered for free or at a discounted rate"

But that's exactly how they deal with *not* giving you a refund when the service dies - "Oh, we offer that for FREE"...

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Read The Gods of War for every tired cliche you never wanted to see in a sci fi book

Cthonus

Stealth Books - "Our target audience is at least as clever as we are." (http://stealthbooks.wordpress.com/)

Nuf sed.

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Sony DENIES PlayStation Network WOBBLES despite gamer GRIPES

Cthonus

Yep down here too

Rest of t'internet is fine but PSN continually reports Maintenance error.

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Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more

Cthonus

Re: We pay Hachette for their good judgement

"full of Oxbridge luvvies, ghostwritten sleb biogs, and middlebrow nonentities specialising in novels about wine, shoes, husbands, and bitchy middle class nastiness."

Whereas the burgeoning ebook market is full of metrosexual novelettes on werewolves, vampires, pixies, same-sex historical romances and pulp scifi*. Take a look at Amazon's Kindle range.

In the old days you had to impress a commissioning editor. Now you just grease the big A-cloud's wheels. If you want to go back to having a better range of printed books then you'd need to reintroduce the NBA - publisher's cannot support the same breadth of publications when people like supermarkets et al can undercut the usual cash-cow best sellers.

(* not denigrating the quality of the writing, just the genres)

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June Whitfield and EE to old folk: Would you like a nice cup of tea and some internet, dear?

Cthonus

Re: The company has partnered with an organisation which knows what it is doing.

Funny,. That actually happened to me a couple of years ago. Every week I'd get an Age UK letter addresses to some senior citizen.

I kept emailling them to update their mailing list correctly and after a few months of this (where they constantly insisted my address HAD been suppressed) I got this bizzare apology letter, with the envelope addressed to me, but the letter headed "Dear Mrs". I couldn't quite understand what it was trying to say as the sentence structure was very odd.

So I finally scanned the letter and emailed it back to them pointing out if the old dear who'd written it was the same person in charge of the mailing department then perhaps their carer could step in for a few minutes and finally get my address off their bleedin' lists.

It worked.

PS Before anyone says I'm being unfair to pensioners I'd like to point out I'm equally as unfair to every other group out there. :)

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Cthonus

Bought the T shirt...

Spent last weekend with aged parents and new mobile.

Me: Are you sure you know how to use that?

Mum: Of course we do. We've had two before.

Dad: Where does the battery go?

Mum: And how do we answer calls?

Me: You said you'd had two earlier phones.

Mum: We couldn't get those to work.

[next day my own phone rings]

Mum: What are you doing answering?

Me: You phoned me!

Mum: Don't be stupid. We're dialling our own number to test. Why would we call you?

Me: You did call me!

Dad: How come you can answer our number?

Me: AARGH!!!

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Virgin Media goes titsup AGAIN. The cause? Yet MORE DNS strife

Cthonus

It's amateur hour at VM again.

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Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE DNS outage

Cthonus
Coffee/keyboard

Does your horse require water?*

"Virgin Media's status pages claim everything is fine"

The last time I looked at their status page it said for my area (Central Scotland!) people were reporting problems logging on to London Underground wifi. Ya don't say?

*Cowboys, the lot of them.

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How to strip pesky copyright watermarks from photos ... says a FACEBOOK photo bod

Cthonus

Re: Wait a minute

I'm assuming Version 1.0 is some kind of common troll.

I rather think the photographer who's livelihood depends on selling his images is less of a DRMtard than you think. Or clearly, don't think. Or perhaps you feel he ought to make up for lost revenue by flogging torrented BluRays and CDs from the back of his van?

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Virgin Media so, so SORRY for turning spam fire-hose on its punters

Cthonus

Re: Muppets

They only became giants by standing on the shoulders of others.. Usually without asking.

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Cthonus

Re: Exam

Personally I think the Reply-to-All button ought to be connected to the mains and the current regulated by the number of individuals on the list. Small shock for a small list. A Darwin Award for the greater faux pas.

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PUNISHMENT gluttons: The Dr Who monsters that come back for more

Cthonus

Re: The Master

Hmm. Roger Delgado exuded all the menace and charm of an East End gang lord.

John Simm (who in other roles has been fantastic) played the character as if he was in a Carry On Up The Loony Bin movie.. Sometimes less is more.

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Ten top stories from New Who

Cthonus

Re: Daleks and stairs

Quite right. The stairs issue was cleared well before this reboot.

And as for "the show’s design team got the look right" I'm with Ray Cusick - WTF are there bolts and rivets showing? This is supposed to be a high-tech mechanised society capable of building almost anything. It's not supposed to be a steam punk revival.

I have to say I'm not taken with the new cybermen either - they're just chunky lumps of metal. All the older versions had something interesting about them whether it was the semi-humanoid faces of the Tenth Planet, or the later chest-units. Okay maybe the lace-up boots weren't the best design feature but a spray-painted wetsuit better suggests futuristic metallurgy than something that looks like it fell out of a Victorian foundry.

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Hacker cracks Vodafone Germany, steals data of 2 million customers

Cthonus

Re: "Hardly possible"?

"In a statement (in Deutsch) expressing regret over the incident and promising to inform customer[s], Vodafone.de said that police have identified a[n] unnamed suspect and carried out a search."

It's not that much better in English...

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'Kim Jong-un executes nork-baring ex and pals for love polygon skin flick'

Cthonus
Mushroom

Re: Propaganda

"Ah yes, the nukes. Strapped onto missiles that can barely reach Japan."

I really don't see that "they can't hit us back" is a good enough justification for taking arms against NK.

Do you really not care if they turn those weapons on countries they can hit in mindless retaliation?

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Google cursed its own phones with wacked Wi-Fi, say Nexus users

Cthonus

Gallery crash

I've had the gallery crash on me repeatedly with only two jpegs in the directory, one of normal resolution and the other a small thumbnail.

Deleting the thumbnail stopped the crash so I'm wondering if it's the scaling routine that's the issue.

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'Hacked' estate agency Foxtons breaks glass, pulls password reset cord

Cthonus
Stop

"The recent spate of high-profile data breaches, such as this alleged attack on Foxtons, are evidence that organisations are either not taking cyber security seriously or are bewildered by the problem"

Anycompany: "How much will this extra security cost?"

IT Dept: "£xxxx"

Anycompany: "And if the worst happens what can we be sued for?"

Lawyer: "Only £xxx"

Anycompany: "Right. Operation 'Heads in the Sand postion'. All for? All against?"

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Microsoft to fund Blake's 7 return as Xbox Live exclusive

Cthonus
Thumb Down

"this handsome ex-soldier sits up, and looks at a photo of his wife Rachel. Beautiful. Deceased.”

Another tired old cliche. Why does he have to be handsome and why does she need to be beautiful?

Has no one quite realised why most American SF shows just fade away after a season or two? All lip gloss and no substance. Perfect teeth isn't a substitute for a decent plot and good actors.

Remember "Murder One" with the mesmerising Daniel Benzali? Not pin up material, so after the success of S1 they replaced him with a "more" camera-friendly version. Show cancelled...

American remake of Red Dwarf: remember what they did to the character of Lister? Show cancelled...

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Who will Dr Who chew in 50th TV do before Matt Smith bids adieu?

Cthonus

Much as I religiously sit down every Saturday to watch it I do find myself enjoying the old Pertwee/TBaker ones much more than the current reboot.

Maybe it's part nostalgia but in the absence of budget for special effects plot and characterisation played a big part in each episode. Now I feel the "plot" mainly involves the current incumbent girning to camera whilst flapping his magic wand in all directions at once. Characterisation should not be replaced by caricature.

Gatis scripts aside, Moffat's seem to be all spectical and little substance. Good for the occasional extravaganza but it's like overdosing on chocolate meringue. One bite and it substantively collapses.

On the plus side, the eye-candy has certainly improved :)

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WAR ON PORN: UK flicks switch on 'I am a pervert' web filters

Cthonus

We have a PM who refuses to follow what the majority of the public want and implement the Leveson report as it sets a bad precident over "Press Freedom".

Now he feels he can impose a web filter on everyone (opt out be damned: if it's filtering content not specifically designated as illegal it's censorship by the back door) wanting to access the internet at home whilst still condoning the right of newspapers and other sundry rags to sexualise children and stuff photos of semi-naked women between the newssheets where any kid can see.

I know it will never work: the attempts to block PirateBay just illustrates how the web routes around such blockages, but knowing it'll never work doesn't lessen the anger I feel.

Fix the economy. Fix the gutter press. Fix our army's kit shortages. Fix youth unemployment. Fix your own lobbyists.

Don't just pander to the Daily Mail readership as if it makes up the entire electorate.

Porn does not equate with Abuse/Rape any more than Muslim equates with Terrorism (though his beloved Daily Mail may argue the latter).

</rant>

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PORNAGEDDON: Sexy bloggrs stung by Tumblr smut smackdown

Cthonus
Pint

When I joined Deviant Art it was what it said on the tin :)

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BBC-featured call centre slapped with hefty fine for unwanted calls

Cthonus

My most recent run in with cold callers:

Me: "Of course I can talk. Just give me a moment for Sgt Macdonald to come back with the charge sheets and I'll happily talk to you about contravensions of the Telecoms Acts whilst he traces this call."

Them:<click>

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Penguin pays $75m to settle ebook price-fixing case

Cthonus
Holmes

Re: Who gets the cash?!

As an ex-bookseller I have soft spot for the Penguin brand and as much as I dislike being ripped off buying ebooks I'd dislike it even more if such well-known publishers went under.

They may have a retail turnover of £440m (2012 figures) but at least for last year the Grauniad was reporting their operating profit as just £22m.

I really can't blame any of the remaining UK publishers for jumping on any chance to increase their profitibility given their steady decline since the abolition of the Net Book Agreement. Better value for the consumer? Possibly. More choice for the consumer? Certainly not.

I'm not sure I'd want to be in a world where the only reading material was either self-published ebooks or mass market tra... novels like Dan Brown's latest. Sure, they have their niche in the marketplace but give me a Penguin Classic any day.

Yes - please have a level playing field when it comes to [e]book buying, but also, please don't take the golden feathers off the golden goose. Money like that just goes straight into whichever Treasury has jurisdiction and does nothing to help either the reader or the publisher.

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BT Tower is just a relic? Wrong: It relays 18,000hrs of telly daily

Cthonus
Thumb Up

Sod the Shard, I'd happily pay £24.95 for a proper tour around a real iconic building.

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Google 'will be pulled back in front of MPs' on its UK tax affairs

Cthonus
Headmaster

"they're doing no more negotiate subject to approval of the board in Ireland," he said ungrammatically, whilst balancing a copy of Fowler's Modern English Usage on his nose and whistling "My Way" backwards.

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I salute Lady THATCHER - Shoreditch's SILICON GODMOTHER

Cthonus
Black Helicopters

Ayn Rand!

Philosophy aside, her writing style is stilted and turgid.

Writing style aside, the only time I've seen her philosophy put to good effect was in Bioshock.

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Scottish SF master Iain M Banks reveals he has less than a year to live

Cthonus

Not only is he an accomplished writer but - speaking as an ex-bookseller - he also has that rare ability to woo a crowd. Too many modern authors are talented on the page but lack the charisma to carry off a reading with aplomb. Mr Banks was always a joy to listen to.

Long may he be read.

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Entire internet credits snapper for taking great pic while actually dead

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Inside Adastral: BT's Belgium-sized broadband boffinry base

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Google sidelines Maps bloke, shifts him from 'A' to 'X'

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NASA probes spots temporary third Van Allen radiation belt

Cthonus
Holmes

Typo time again

" Surface of Marts"

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Amazon-bashed HMV calls in administrators, seeks buyer

Cthonus
Unhappy

squaring the (vicious) circle

Virgin & Amazon [et al] couldn't compete with the online retailers.

Play.com etc had the Channel Islands VAT loophole closed on it so it couldn't discount by 17.5%.

So we're left with the only "highstreet" presence being a supermarket bulk discounting the latest stock and with little or no back catalogue.

And Amazon/Google, doing their utmost within the legal framework to avoid UK taxes.

Depressing.

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Shiny new UK.gov stats website a 'disaster' - MPs

Cthonus
Holmes

Re: A success by any other name

I'd go as far as to suggest it's been cribbed from http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20701514

The BBC only give the url as a link under the heading "the website".

Easy for a harried journo to miss on the way to a deadline.

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'Spend police USB stick data loss mega-fine on IT lessons for cops'

Cthonus
Holmes

Disagree

Given the media coverage of data loss (from NHS to Schools to Local Govt) over the last few years you'd have to be pretty dense for that not to have filtered through now.

These things happen, not down to lack of training (though it's easy to blame that) but because after hours of lecturing on best practises tired and busy people take the easy way out.

(I need to take this data home but if i speak to IT I'll just get bogged down in paperwork and questions)

Experience? Working with a small finance company - where everyone was lectured regularly on the importance of FSA and Data Protection regs. Didn't stop people on Friday evening from dumping stuff onto their laptops before heading out the door.

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The GPL self-destruct mechanism that is killing Linux

Cthonus
WTF?

Parsing error

"Linux itself hasn't split is the forceful, charismatic leadership of Linus Torvalds"

Surely the bigger the headline the more easy it is to spot a cut-n-paste howler?

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Medical scan record that the NHS says will cost £2k to retrieve: Detail

Cthonus
Alert

Um. There's no mention of the trust asking around to see if any other establisments still have this equipment. Surely that would be the most sensible option - or are our hospitals now little island kingdoms with communications?

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Debenhams cafes ban outré terms like 'espresso' and 'cappuccino'

Cthonus
WTF?

That just encourages me to go in and ask for a skinny ristretto*.

*yes I know that's an oxy, moron.

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Virgin Media spanked for 'we've already cabled up your house' mailshot

Cthonus
Paris Hilton

Toothless watchdogs

Is there any point to the ASA? Time and again VM (and world+dog) run ads that are found to be misleading to what result? They're told not to run the same advert again. So they run a new misleading one in its place.

If you genuinely wanted to discourage the practise you'd bite them until it hurt.

Paris 'cos she knows when to use teeth and when not to.

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Ofcom probe into telcos jacking-up charges halfway through contracts

Cthonus
Thumb Down

It's hardly a "fixed contract" if one side can arbitrarily change the cost. Perhaps a change in nomenclature is called for. Shafting contract??

<looking at you, Orange>

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iPhone 5: UK pay-monthly tariffs compared

Cthonus
Thumb Down

Published rates...

Aren't they all meaningless anyway? Given the providers seem to have free rein to increase fixed-term contract prices when *they feel like it.

* inflation, retail price increase, an R in the month...

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Doctor Who to hit small screen on 1 September

Cthonus
Happy

Re: Doctor Who?

Pertwee? Yes he did albeit briefly: there was a couple of seconds clip of (I think) The Moonbase cybermen used as a Miniscope realm in Carnival of Monsters.

(unashamed Who-phile) :D

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WikiLeaks haters launch DDoS assault on Russia Today

Cthonus
Joke

Re: And typically...

We could have had them at the closing Olympics ceremony signing "Always look on the bright side of life.." whilst dressed as Russian Orthodox nuns on skates....

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Crime Map

Cthonus
FAIL

And elsewhere in the UK...

"However, the Crime Map app helps you to make sense of all the statistics by providing a quick overview of crime in your manor and elsewhere in the UK."

This would be the app entitled Crime Map ENGLAND & WALES?

Would be nice if your review had brought that to attention rather than blindly ignoring half the regions that make up the British Isles.

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Facebook shells out $10m for using users faces in adverts

Cthonus

Just my 2 cents

Of course if the 150 billion needs downgrading it rather devalues the stated $10 million charity gift.

$0.02 anyone?

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BT missing from Pirate Bay High Court slap-down

Cthonus
Megaphone

Did anyone see the article in The Times about the senior citizen who's been copying and distributing movies to the US Army overseas for years. Said he'd done thousands of rips.

RIAss of American = <silence>

One law it isn't.

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Dragonriders of Pern author Anne McCaffrey dies

Cthonus
Coffee/keyboard

re: Odder Habits

Worked well enough for Moorcock!

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Why your tech CV sucks

Cthonus

Just hang on a sekond...

"The average HR [...] can, however, spell and identify sloppiness."

Are you quite sure of your statistics on these points? We've all seen job adverts with salary ranging from "£40000/day" to "£250 pa" and with location down as every major city between the Kent coast and Duncansby Head.

From yesterday's deletion pile - "Coffee Demonstrator - Up to 10.00 GBP Hourly + £10 per hour" and the lovely "Business Development - £1 to £100k pa + Excellent salary" (both Jobsite).

You can't blame these on overworked typesetters!

Personally I'd welcome the opportunity to deal with an HR person with an eye for detail and the ability to think rationally but I rather fear they're just as fallable as any other profession.

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