* Posts by skelband

2006 posts • joined 18 Aug 2008

Forget 1,000 lashes for Facebook posts, Saudis now want to behead blogger Raif Badawi

skelband
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Re: Give some thought about all this...

> This is not the Saudi government practicing some extreme form of radical Islam. It is the Saudi government killing its opponents and keeping the population oppressed, just like dictators everywhere.

I beg to differ.

This chap merely stated that he has a different opinion about the nature of the cosmos. For this, the Saudis want to kill him.

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skelband
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Re: Saudi Arabia

Or even better: us ridding ourselves of our dependency on it.

ITER: hurry the f*ck up.

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skelband
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> The sentence brought condemnation, but little else, from governments around the world.

Well, unless it endangers our oil supply, governments aren't going to officially give a rat's arse.

F*ck me. It's like the 20th Century just didn't happen in these countries.

For this kind of thing we need worldwide governmental sanctions. This is just one case among thousands or millions of quiet atheistic realisations. If that's not a vicious, brutal oppression of people worthy of international sanctions, I don't know what is.

The apostacy of the religious to atheism is the quiet revolution that hardly anyone talks about but it is the final waking up of people from our bronze age mysticism, the realisation of our proper birthright: the real world, full of wonder and astonishment.

Carl Sagan: "This is better than we thought. The Universe is much bigger than our prophets said, grander, more subtle, more elegant." F*ck yeah.

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You're outta here! Baseball star strikes out sleazy trolls who targeted teen daughter

skelband
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> Isn't perceived anonymity better than actual anonymity?

Depends on your perspective.

My point is that their expectation of any comeback was minimal. They just didn't think that any consequences of their actions would be forthcoming.

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skelband
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The reason why these f*ckwits do this kind of thing on the Internet is because of some kind of perceived anonymity. There is a disconnection between their computer and the real world in their minds.

Most of these people would never, ever utter these kinds of comments to their victims' faces.

What stops them in the real world is shame.

In our modern life, we have far too little shame, that emotional response that comes from society psychically telling us that we are being a dick.

All that this baseball player has done is restore the natural balance. You say something that makes you a dick, then everyone should know about it. He also seems to be advocating that he and his family don't resort to violence even though he comments on his blog about the reasonable outrage that his daughter's boyfriend feels about the whole thing.

I'm the father of a 19 year old daughter. I have to say that I don't think that I could be quite so restrained.

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‪Obama criticises China's mandatory backdoor tech import rules

skelband
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Re: The difference is...

> Yes, because overthrowing dictators is all thats needed to bring about peace and harmony and goodwill to all men. Look at Syria, Libya, Egypt.... oh, wait....

You do realise that the US government supported (at least in part) and instigated the creation of most of those regimes don't you?

Gadafi, Hussain, all puppets of the US government at one time or another.

The US administration is the worst kind of backstabbing hypocrite.

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skelband
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Re: That's rich...

> Their job is to protect US interests...

That used to mean protecting the US from foreign powers.

As we know now, that (more often than not) is about working *for* American corporate and political interests and working against the American preople, particularly if they have the termerity to bring the US administration to book about what appalling things they're getting up to in secret in their name.

The theory is one thing, the practice is something else entirely.

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WHY are GoDaddy and Verisign stockpiling patents? Do I smell war?

skelband
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> What is striking about the applications, and awarded patents, is that most of them cover what are already fairly common practices in the industry.

Wait, what?

Only in the US.

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Snowden 'ready to return to US', claims lawyer

skelband
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Re: Yes

Matt, your comments are showing....

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Is light a wave or a particle? Beaming boffins prove it's BOTH

skelband
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Trollface

Pictures please or it didn't....oh. Forget that.

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Here comes Vulkan: The next generation of the OpenGL graphics API

skelband
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Re: Great...

Everyone in the Graphics realm would love a portable, low-level API.

It's great for game developers, hardware manufacturers and users alike.

If Microsoft don't embrace it, they're going to find that more and more Windows is the "alternative" platform that developers might consider if they have enough budget, because with one single API, they can tackle the majority of every other platform.

The real question is why we haven't had this until now.

I wish it success.

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Net neutrality secrecy: No one knows what the FCC approved (BUT Google has a good idea)

skelband
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Re: "more openness will make it easier for lobbyists"

> Hello? McFly? That's the current situation, not some hypothetical future scenario.

There's hardly any *specific* politicing at the moment and there are no court cases pending on this at this point in time. Since the details are secret, what would you build a case on?

When the details come out, the guns will start firing certainly, but there's hardly anything going on legally at the moment.

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skelband
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That's exactly what's going on here.

If only the idealists above were right that what this process really needs is openness and an intelligent and meaningful discussion by all affected parties.

What would actually happen is that the cable companies would throw lobbyist money at it like there was no tomorrow, and the whole process would drown in partisan politics and legal challenges.

I still prefer the process to be open, but Wheeler is shit scared that an open process would scupper any chance of getting *anything* through.

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In Barcelona, no one can hear you scream ... HTC, Valve unleash Giger-inspired VR headgear

skelband
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Re: Giger - Really !!

> Anyone that knows Gigers works would have a hard time finding anything Giger related... A couple of cables sticking out the top, cmon... I really don't see too much of the BioMechaniks here, or is it all virtual.....

I came here to say pretty much the same.

Most of Giger's work involved the diabolical fusion of the technological with the biological.

I honestly really don't see any of that here.

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Elon Musk plans to plonk urban Hyperloop subsonic tube on California

skelband
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Re: Tesla Showroom

Over here in Vancouver, they seem to be everywhere.

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skelband
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Re: Let's see how testing goes before coming to any conclusions

> Great yeah, an electric car, but everyone knows that they're flawed as a mode of transportation and hardly anyone asks where the electricity comes from in the first place.

Of course people ask.

That's actually a different problem to solve. Solving the problem of cars that don't burn fossil fuels though is inevitably a part of that. I agree that electric cars might not be the answer, but to be honest, it is likely to be.

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RIP Leonard Nimoy: He lived long and prospered

skelband
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Unhappy

Jeez, I really don't know what to say.

You think giants like this man will live forever, but they don't.

What's sure is that he has made an enduring mark on humanity like few others do.

RIP

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Net neutrality victory: FCC approves 'open internet' rules in 3-2 vote

skelband
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Re: Good (@ doctariAFC2)

Crikey, you really are an angry little gnome, aren't you?

Believe it or not, shouting at the other commentators doesn't make your opinions more valid.

Take a chill pill for fuck sake.

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Don't pay for the BBC? Then no Doctor Who for you, I'm afraid

skelband
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Re: Being in the US, I'm no expert on the BBC...

I came here to say the exact same thing.

Thing is, that is exactly what is happening now but the government are putting a different procedural slant on it.

As someone said above, the license is effectively a tax that go to the general government coffers and the BBC gets a separate grant purportedly matched to the license revenue. There is very little difference between this and funding the BBC out of general taxation.

Over and above the emotional reactions and issues related to "fairness", scrapping the license would kill a whole wadge of stupid criminal law in the UK and remove any necessity for pay per view style access requirements which would be expensive to operate, divisive and probably unsustainable in the long run.

The BBC was started as a public service for the common good, evidenced by the Open University, science programmes and the like, many of which have been canned since they don't cater to a wide and witless audience. The fact that a lot of it seems to have devolved into tat is a problem in itself.

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For pity's sake, you FOOL! DON'T UPGRADE it will make it WORSE

skelband
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Unhappy

Re: Take a look on the Amazon reviews for IT Hardware/Software...

> Application software that is Windows-only is perfectly acceptable to me. However, a cloud-based system intended for multi-user access should be OS agnostic.

I'm having a hard time sussing out why *any* cloud service wouldn't be OS agnostic.

Surely in the 21st Century it is as easy to make a network service OS agnostic as it is to make it OS specific. We do have standards for this kind of thing right?

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A truly SHOCKING tale of electrified PCs

skelband
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Re: Bad earth.

Sounds like a similar situation with domestic PME (Protective Mutiple Earth) main systems where the earth and neutral are basically the same. Often found where mains is delivery directly by overhead wire.

All conductive surfaces have to be earth bonded, which means that they are connected to the neutral line.

Any failure of the neutral conductor into the house effectively makes all those surfaces live through any switched on device.

Makes a good case for a local ground spike.

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A cookie with a 7,984-year lifespan. Blimey, Roy Batty only got 4!

skelband
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Facepalm

Difference

Anyone know what "An automated and manual examination" is?

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Obama turns back on spooks: 'I'm on the side of strong encryption'

skelband
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From what I saw of the conversation, Obama seems to have a more realistic and educated view of how things really are these days.

Is it just me or does he seem to have pretty much forgone the partisanship that he used to exhibit before he lost the majority in administration. He doesn't seem to care any more about what those idiots in both chambers think and speaks his mind more clearly on a whole range of issues.

Just a note on the sub headline: he doesn't actually make any moralistic comment on Snowdon himself *or* the disclosures; merely that a mistrust has emerged as a result of them, which is entirely understandable and arguably what Snowdon was trying to achieve anyway.

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REPORT: UK needs online eBay-style court for civil justice

skelband
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Re: What about evidence ?

When I saw the headline, I immediately wondered how this could possibly work.

In retrospect, and online facility could be a good way to reduce the cost and loss of work etc for the purely administrative side of the law.

On the other hand, the threat of having to go to court might sometimes pursuade the parties to come to agreement beforehand.

On the other, other hand, the threat of going to court can often be a disincentive to the legitimate complainant to bother at all.

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Lightbulb moment for visible light networking: 200 Gbps without a fibre

skelband
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In Ceiling

Contrary to the Debbie Downers above, if occurs to me that a great many wifi APs these days in offices are in the ceiling space for even coverage. 3m to the ceiling with a reasonable angle might be quite workable.

Won't work without line-of-sight but as an auxiliary option it might be useful.

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You'll NEVER guess who has bought I Taught Taylor Swift How To Give Head dot-com

skelband
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Etymology

Anyone know the history of this strange euphemism "give head"?

I would put it in the same category as "big air".

Is it really that hard to say "suck my cock" or "jump high"?

The euphemism is hardly more polite, so I'm not sure what the point is.

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FCC chair refuses to make net neutrality rules public before approval

skelband
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Re: "I kid you not, cable TV as it looks now will be gone within 3 years (or sooner)."

> I'll take that bet - at least for the US. This is very similar to the landline-to-cellphone-only switch.

We'll have to wait to see.

The thing is, the cellphone companies are the cable incumbants and they managed to make cellphones a premium service. They're popular and fashionable, so pretty expensive compared to land lines. The challengers to the cable companies are deliberately cheap and they're catching on fast. Their offerings are clearly better for consumers economically.

The question really is whether or not their low pricing is sustainable and if, when the dust clears, we are left with competition or another set of monopolistic incumbants.

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skelband
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Re: Ala carte channels are a wet dream

> Both would be quite an intrusion into how a company chooses to offer their products.

I agree, but the reality is that the cable companies are looking at a pretty bleak future with increased competition. Mandating a break up of the channel packages is not necessary. The like of Netflix, Hulu and many more independents are eating their lunch.

Cable companies are shitting themselves at the prospect of becoming dumb pipes since that is a race to the bottom. The various offerings like CraveTV from Bell are efforts to stop the hemorrhaging but it won't work.

I kid you not, cable TV as it looks now will be gone within 3 years (or sooner). It won't be gradual. Like video shops, the industry will tip just enough to cause an avalanche. Personally, I think that a lot of them will go bust since they will be unable to change their business models fast enough, especially since TV is their current cash cow. I can't wait.

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skelband
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Re: Ala carte channels are a wet dream

> you might as well mandate that GM sell their cars and engines separately.

A better car analogy would be requiring you to buy a Ford Focus, Ka and Fiesta rather than any single one.

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skelband
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Seems to me this is a good plan.

If Wheeler releases the plan ahead of time, that gives the cable companies ages to get their lobbying boots on to try and scupper it in the media before it gets to an actual vote.

Credit to the guy though. This kind of thing can make or break a career.

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Snowden leaks LEGALISED GCHQ's 'illegal' dragnet spying, rules British tribunal

skelband
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> We are pleased that the Court has once again ruled that the UK’s bulk interception regime is fully lawful.

Burning witches used to be lawful. Doesn't make it right.

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Start stockpiling tinned beans and ammo: This malware will end civilisation

skelband
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I've been living in Canada for a few years now and it's surprising how strange it is to hear the term "tinned beans" after all this time.

They tend to say "canned beans" here. Tinned beans just sounds weird now.

A little piece of my Yorkshire soul has gone :(

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Google, Amazon 'n' pals fork out for AdBlock Plus 'unblock' – report

skelband
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Re: Sigh

> Regular commercial TV is almost unwatchable in Canada too.

It's doubly galling since you have to pay for most channels worth watching, and they're not cheap either.

As far as I'm concerned, if you're paying for it, you shouldn't have to endure ads.

If you're getting it for free, well fair enough.

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'LOOK into my EYES: You are feeling very worried about the climate ... SO worried'

skelband
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Re: @skelband

> Your average Joe and Josephine Public have little idea about the arguments, potential causes and suggested solutions, so asking them is pointless and counter-productive.

I would agree that the staggering lack of information or public discourse is a big problem.

That people remain ignorant and disconnected from public discourse is the main reason that our political masters manage to get away with so much of their bullshit.

That so many people are so ignorant is the real problem and there is little incentive to change this.

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skelband
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> Asking the public their views on climate change is fairly pointless.

Actually, this is one of the most important aspects of the whole debate.

The climate debate, whether or not you think climate change is preponderantly man-made, should be focussed on what we the public want to do about. The current political opinion on this issue is clouded by partisanship and political oneupmanship.

It's about time the populous was asked what they are willing to do if the climate changes.

Mostly it seems rather one-sided in terms of cutting emissions, raising taxes and other pointless agendas.

Has anyone considered that we might be happy to just move our houses from the coast?

The possibilities are not nearly as narrow as the politicians and climatologists like to paint it.

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Google Translate MEAT GRINDER turns gay into 'faggot', 'poof', 'queen'

skelband
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Re: *facepalm*

> It took some explaining!

Thanks goodness you didn't declare that you were going to "smoke a fag".

The local sheriff might have got involved.

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HMRC fails to plan for £10.4bn contract exit... because it's 'too risky'

skelband
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> particularly when you cost for the re-skilling and the usual reality of the FOSS software being less capable than the commercial competition.

We're talking here principally about back-end software.

This used to be a good argument when Hadoop technologies, MySQL and Linux were rare, known only to a few bearded hippies.

For that last few years these technologies have become the de facto mainstream rather than the exception. That argument no longer holds.

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Cubans defy government's home internet ban with secret home-made network

skelband
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Black Helicopters

Nice one Washington Post!

Rafael Antonio Broche Moreno can now expect the Cuban black helicopters nuking his house from above.

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SURPRISE! Microsoft pops open Windows 10 Preview build early

skelband
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Boot

> The most annoying one, most likely, will be the tendency for some PCs to display a boot selection menu each time they start up.

My laptop does that all the time. It's Linux Mint and it's called a "feature" :D

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Why so tax-shy, big tech firms? – Bank of England governor

skelband
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Re: "A sense of responsibility is needed.”

If the tax take was anywhere reasonable, then I think more people would have a sense of responsibility in this area.

But since a large wadge of it goes straight to that cesspool of iniquity, the EU, and another large wadge goes into fighting other people's wars, the "common good" is fast becoming a long forgotten dream.

There's nothing remotely "good" about the tax systems of the West these days.

We need to return to smaller state government, and more local devolution + taxes which would at least give people the feeling that they were paying for stuff for them rather than the Whitehall wonks' holidays and bureaucratic pipe dreams.

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SCREW you, GLASSHOLES! Microsoft unveils HoloLens

skelband
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Re: A new term to describe them?

Microshaftholes.

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SECRETS of the LOST SCROLLS unlocked by key to HEALTHY BOOBS

skelband
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I thought the story was primarily about the technology.

I think that's pretty cool in its own right.

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SCIENTIFIC CONSENSUS that 2014 was record HOTTEST year? NO

skelband
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Re: Wait Whaaa?

> If you read the full report and not just the headlines then you find they say they are only 38% sure.

And your point is what exactly?

So they are 38% sure. If their 38% sureness is well within what would reasonably be called random variation, then their 38% statistically counts for exactly nothing. That's the point.

And as someone else said, they're not exactly up front about the fact that they cannot draw any reasonable conclusion other than there is no statistically significant evidence to support a change in the temperature.

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skelband
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Re: Wait Whaaa?

> So is the debate here that global land (sea temp isn't part of the debate because its a losing argument) temperatures havent really changed in the past ten years, thus climate change doesnt exist or isnt as bad as thought?

Erm, well actually no, that's not what the debate here is.

It is about the statistical reliability of one report about 2014's climate measurements.

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skelband
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FAIL

Re: consensus

100% consensus among religious people is that God is real.

Unfortunately, they are all wrong.

Please don't quote consensus as being a reliable measure of anything here. We can see past it. OK?

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skelband
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Re: Nope

It's not entirely bogus.

Levies on fuel are really hurting a lot of people who don't live in cities for which fuel is their only option for getting around.

The whole point of fuel levies is to make fuel so expensive that it changes the behaviour of consumers so that they will use less fuel. This might mean buying more fuel efficient cars which is a good thing, but inevitably it also means that they make fewer journeys which is probably a bad thing if your living depends on it.

These crude measures will inevitably affect some people disproportionately and unfairly while having positive effect elsewhere.

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skelband
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Re: Thermometers

> Any data 'massaging' deing done should be to the current data to lower it because of the UHI that predominates present readings.

A certain amount of massaging is necessary to normalise the data since different methods are used for measurement in different places. I would imagine that it is very tempting to massage the data so that it confirms your particular biases though.

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skelband
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Re: Well

> The idea that there is a hiatus is idiotic.

Hardly anyone of any credibility is denying that a hiatus exists. The masurements clearly show it on both sides of the debate camp. The debate is as to why.

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skelband
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Re: Cut the sh*t! @Stuart 22

> But the margin of error is not really relevant as it is the same for each recent year. So while it is possible it isn't the probability it is.

You're obviously not a statistician otherwise you would not have made such a stupid comment.

The people taking these readings are taking samples. They're not measuring the temperature at all places on the planet simultaneously and continuously. Therefore, what they are doing is called "sampling". Sampling can only ever tell you a limited amount about the whole which is why we have the concept of error and confidence intervals.

Within those bounds, you can not be said to have made any reasonable correlation to the population. Outside those bands, you can with a calculable level of probability.

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Which of UK's major ISPs will let you have exotic p0rn? NONE OF THEM

skelband
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> I'm trying to understand how the headline and the content of the story are related.

I came here to make the same comment.

Nothing in the article seems to be remotely connected to pornography, even via a tenuous link related to censorship.

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