* Posts by Vincent Ballard

225 posts • joined 23 Aug 2008

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Perhaps the AIpocalypse ISN'T imminent – if Google Translate is anything to go by, that is

Vincent Ballard

Re: It could be worse

Websites can be edited for not much more than it would have cost to do the thing properly in the first place. Restaurants can be renamed, albeit it costs more because you have to replace the signage, menus, and any other customised decor. If you want something really expensive to fix, how about a TV programme?

A BBC series called Episodes had a gravestone which said in English that the departed would be dearly missed, and in Hebrew that he would be pickled at great expense.

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Spain triumphs! Fascist anthem hails Spanish badminton champ

Vincent Ballard

Franco, Franco, que tiene el culo blanco

Of course, the lyrics that everyone knows are the ones about Franco having a white arse because his wife washes it with Ariel...

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It's incredibly easy to bump someone off online, and here's how to do it – infosec bod

Vincent Ballard

Clarifications requested

In order to register someone as dead a form detailing the cause of mortality needs to be filled out by a doctor within 24 hours of that person's final breath.
This definitely isn't true in the UK - it can take much longer than that to get an autopsy - but it's not clear from context whether it's talking about Australia or the US.

in California you need an arts degree.
Please tell me this is a joke. Why shouldn't someone with a degree in, say, biochemistry be considered capable of handling a body?

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Secret US-Pacific trade pact leak exposes power of the copyright lobby

Vincent Ballard

Re: Changing the law

Speaking as someone who regularly has to ask for clarification from the people who set the questions at my pub quiz, I think that it's very sensible to specify that the answer which is considered correct is the one which fits a specific, easily identified, version. Otherwise you'll get people claiming that their (officially wrong) answer is the correct one in the Penguin version, or in the original Danish version, or somesuch.

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Wait, STOP: Are you installing Windows 10 or RANSOMWARE?

Vincent Ballard

Re: Are any of us surprised?

Or Nominet, who back in May sent an e-mail to everyone with a domain under the .uk CCTLD (including those with .co.uk etc. domains) saying

"You now have access to an online account with Nominet that you can use to manage some other services associated with your .uk domain names (for example to transfer your domain name or check your registration details).

"Please follow the link below to access your online account and confirm that your contact details are correct"

According to their customer support this was a genuine e-mail rather than a phish, but it fails every sniff test.

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Americans care more about EU data protection laws than the French

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Europarl seems to be the insider term for them. I suspect it's because those prefixes work for a lot of European languages (en: European Parliament; fr: Parlement européen; de: Europäisches Parlament; es and it: Parlamento europeo; etc). Their domain is europarl.europa.eu.

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El Reg touches down at the ESA's Spanish outpost, sniffs around

Vincent Ballard

Re: I'm confused*

Drivers for esoteric hardware? That's the classic reason for science labs to keep antique kit running.

Or maybe they value stability over all else and don't want to risk a migration. That's the reason that a lot of hospitals still use WinXP. I was seeing IE6 in my logs for a clinical trial progress tracking website last year.

Incidentally, I spotted the Sun Microsystems badge in one of those photos before I got to the line about kit from companies which don't exist any more. Been a while since I saw that logo.

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ICANN further implicated in .Africa controversy

Vincent Ballard

Re: My question is: who cares about a .africa domain?

There's a .eu, which is used by some people other than the EU institutions.

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Oxford Uni unearths 800-year-old document to seize domain names

Vincent Ballard

Re: Rather entertaining

The application form is at http://www.oxfordcollegeirl.com/?id=11 . "Registration Fees 20000 Sterling Plus Donations", which is a somewhat interesting interpretation of "donation". I decided my previous post was long enough without mentioning that. But looking at the list of honour, lists of graduates, and photos apparently of graduation ceremonies, I suspect that they're mainly aiming to defraud people from the Middle East rather than British or Irish.

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Vincent Ballard
Alien

I'm not sure what the best part of that site is. Whether it's the pictures of Wills and Kate in the "List of honor" (sic), even though they're not named in the list. Or the fact that one of the people in their slider is apparently a hand-drawn circuit diagram. Or that they claim to be "bringing the attention to an important kind of medical research known as clinical research". Or that they claim to offer a graphic design course that includes "Introduction to using windows XP". Perhaps the winner is the claim under "Research Topics > Astrophysics" that Mars is inhabited by primates and clay fertility goddesses, whereas Saturn is inhabited by owls and grey aliens. It's comedy gold wherever you look.

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We tried using Windows 10 for real work and ... oh, the horror

Vincent Ballard

Re: Useful review

The BSoD went purple with Win 8 (or maybe it was 8.1 - I haven't investigated in detail, but I have seen a couple on the office Surface). Have they decided to go back to blue in 10?

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How many top-level domains are there now? 300? 500? No, it's 1,000

Vincent Ballard

Re: So tasty!

I saw .bcn and thought "Why does Barcelona need two TLDs?" It's the airport code for Barcelona El Prat, and has become commonly used as an abbreviation for the city.

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China wants to build a 200km-long undersea tunnel to America

Vincent Ballard

And they've also recently (as in, last year) launched a freight train to Madrid.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Uitsmijter

Vincent Ballard

Re: ¿Hablas Castellano?

It may be slightly fusion, but fusing Dutch and Spanish cuisine is actually quite reasonable given the historical links between the two countries. There's a reason that the Dutch St Nick comes from Spain every year.

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Vincent Ballard

Re: Knowledge and wisdom

Advanced knowledge is understanding that they actually go well with avocado, mango, melon, pineapple, raspberries, strawberries, honey, citrus, cream, yoghurt, almonds, and hazelnuts. (Source: The Flavor Bible). Pick a suitable subset and you can make a nice fruit salad with tomato.

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Rampaging fox terrorises rural sports club, victim sustains ‘tweaked groin’

Vincent Ballard

Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

I've had a series of rabies shots. They weren't fun, but they weren't nearly as bad as the tetanus shot which left me unable to walk without pain for days and gave me a needle phobia for years. And they're certainly not as bad as actually getting rabies.

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Britain beats back Argies over Falklands online land grab

Vincent Ballard

Re: I'm actually curious

Spain hasn't given up claiming Gibraltar, even though it's now been British for about 100 years longer than it was Spanish. But at a grassroots level (as a resident of Spain), rather than complaints about non-fulfilment of the Treaty of Utrecht what I hear are complaints about cigarette smuggling.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Nasi goreng pattaya

Vincent Ballard

Re: Incredibly stupid question!

Since it says that traditionally you use left-over rice from yesterday, the answer must be "Yes". (And I personally would not do anything with left-over rice from yesterday other than chuck it in the bin: with its massive surface area, left-over rice is once of the main sources of food poisoning).

I have to wonder whether it's coincidence that this recipe should appear on El Reg in the same week that a menu offering Nazi Goring appeared on a major linguistics blog.

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Drupal flicks fix to nix OpenID admin account hijack hole

Vincent Ballard
WTF?

Mitigated?

Verisign, LiveJournal, or StackExchange? It's not hard to sign up for an account with at least two of those three, so that's hardly a mitigation.

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Microsoft picks up shotgun, walks 'Modern apps' behind the shed

Vincent Ballard

Now all we need is the option to go back to the previous desktop UI. The new one, which is apparently based on some iOS chat app, wastes far too much space. (Not to mention that putting my messages on the right and other people's on the left is just plain confusing).

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Belgium trolls France with bonkers new commemorative coin

Vincent Ballard

Re: Rewriting history yet again

It's even richer when you consider that France is minting a commemorative 2€ coin this year to celebrate the end of a different war. (Ok, it's officially "70 years of peace in Europe", but same difference).

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Config file wipe blunder caused deadly Airbus A400M crash – claim

Vincent Ballard
FAIL

Re: @Ledswinger - The investigation should center on...

What do French authorities have to do with it?

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A pause in global warming? Pah, FOOLS. There was NO PAUSE

Vincent Ballard
Joke

Re: I missed that chocolate story

Tapeworm eggs can help weight loss even without a calorie-controlled diet.

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Vincent Ballard
Thumb Up

Re: Scammed Again

Interesting stuff.

There's one statistic which you didn't mention, and which is important context for the reasoning you present. A priori, improved healthcare could mean that the number of births per woman drop but the number of surviving children per woman rise. The dataset you link also includes infant mortality rates, and e.g. for India they show the number of children per woman who survive 5 years fell from ~4.5 to ~2.4.

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Spaniards get that cinking feeling

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Re: Most Spaniards?

It's not an either/or between seseo and ceceo. Roughly speaking, Spanish has names for every "non-standard" variant, but not for the "standard". The "standard" is to pronounce z and (c before i or e) as "th", and s as "s". Seseo is to pronounce z and (c before i or e) as "s"; it is common in the south of Spain (including the Canaries) and the whole of Spanish-speaking America. Ceceo is to pronounce s as "th"; it is found in parts of the south of Spain, and scarcely anywhere else.

Something like 80% of Spaniards use the "standard" pronunciation of these particular letters, in contrast to the widespread "non-standard" yeísmo (pronouncing ll as "y").

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Vincent Ballard
Coat

German coastguard

I can't help thinking of the (very unfair) Berlitz ad: "We're sinking!" "What are you sinking about?"

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Bog-standard boxty

Vincent Ballard

You used to get feedback on each dish from the regulars at your local. What happened?

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Lies, damn lies and election polls: Why GE2015 pundits fluffed the numbers so badly

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Closed lists

Being able to vote against a particular candidate may be nice, but the real downside of closed party lists is that it makes the candidates much more worried about pleasing the party hierarchy than the electorate. If each of the main parties can pretty much guarantee 3 seats out of the 10 going in a region, you want to suck up to the person who decides which names go in the first 3 slots. Open lists all the way.

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Apple Watch HATES tattoos: Inky pink sinks rinky-dink sensor

Vincent Ballard

The point about tattoos serving to identify burned corpses is an interesting one, but I must confess to surprise that dogtags don't make it a very niche case. Isn't that the whole point of them?

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Sweden releases human genome under Creative Commons licence

Vincent Ballard
Alert

403

I'm not sure whether they had too many requests and took it down, but first linked page (the download one, I presume) is now returning 403.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Tortilla de patatas

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Re: Yum!

Just to be clear, it was an F. As in http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Spanish_sausage-Fuet-01.jpg

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Vincent Ballard

Re: Yum!

Tortilla is a classic tapa, so if you want to add pork products then the culturally appropriate way to do it would be with a pork-based tapa, perhaps some slices of fuet on the side.

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Radio 4 and Dr K on programming languages: Full of Java Kool-Aid

Vincent Ballard

Functional languages

I'm not sure that xkcd 1312 actually contradicts the statement that Haskell is "one of the most popular functional languages". In fact, there's a good case to be made that it picks on Haskell because more readers will at least have heard of it than Ocaml, and more will have tried it out than F#.

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Why Feed.Me.Pizza will never exist: Inside the world of government vetoes and the internet

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Re: Architect

Actually, abogado.es just redirects to abogacia.es, the site of the Consejo General de la Abogacía Española, which is a body established by statute to represent and coordinate the various regional lawyers' guilds.

There is a sense in which the case for protecting es.abogado is stronger than for protecting abogado.es, although it's not a valid concern in the current context of protecting national brands. "Es abogado" means "Is a lawyer", so the use of fulano.es.abogado if Fulano is not a lawyer would be rather dodgy.

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Vincent Ballard

corru.pt is currently available...

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Millions of voters are missing: It’s another #GovtDigiShambles

Vincent Ballard

Re: NI numbers?

The bit about overseas voters needing passport numbers was odd. I successfully renewed my overseas vote with just my NI number. (And yes, I know I was successful because I got a confirmation e-mail from the relevant ERO).

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Chana masala

Vincent Ballard

Re: asafoetida

I've seen a few references to its use in placebos because the recipient was invariably convinced that anything that foul must be powerful medicine.

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Fatally flawed RC4 should just die, shout angry securobods

Vincent Ballard

Re: Other reasons it has not been dropped

It's not quite true that all block cipher methods were vulnerable to BEAST. All block ciphers in CBC mode were, but people who were relatively up to date and had GCM available (and preferred in the negotiation) were ok. The problem there is that both the client and the server have to be up to date.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Smažený sýr

Vincent Ballard

I've had both fried mozzarella and fried camembert as tapas. I'm not a fan of camembert in general, and frying didn't improve it, but people who like it raw will probably like it fried. Mozzarella works well, although provolone is almost certainly better. It's my favourite cheese for general cooking purposes.

One note of caution: hot cheese can stick to your tongue and burn it. Have cold liquid to hand.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: El Reg eggs Benedict

Vincent Ballard
Coat

Re: Muffins

That's assuming you live somewhere which sells them. Don't forget that Lester is based in rural Spain.

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UN negotiations menaced by THOUSANDS of TOPLESS LADIES with MAYONNAISE

Vincent Ballard

Or maybe the local branch of Femen have been trolling his spies.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Sizzling sag aloo

Vincent Ballard

Re: Aloo is "classic" Indian food? Really?

In my local kebab shop I once witnessed an Italian customer arguing with the Turkish owner over which of their two countries chillis are originally from. I considered it politic to refrain from pointing out that they're from the New World.

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Linux chaps want to recycle your mobe as a supercomputer

Vincent Ballard

I am puzzled by the reference to batteries, because I was under the impression that they were the piece of hardware with the shortest useful lifespan. Am I out of date?

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Chickpea stew à la Bureau des Projets Spéciaux

Vincent Ballard

Re: @Chris W (was: Boil pancetta (note splelling)?)

panceta is the most authoritative reference for the Spanish spelling.

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Vincent Ballard

Re: Fusion Cooking?

You used to be able to get kebab pizza in Consum, but they've stopped doing it. Obviously didn't sell well in Spain.

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Amazon's tax deal in Luxembourg BROKE the LAW, says EU

Vincent Ballard

Re: PR is the special olympics of electoral systems - you get elected just for turning up.

When you say "almost 50%": the last U.K. general election in which a party won more than 50% of the votes was in 1931. The second most recent was in 1900. So the current system almost always ensures that at any given time fewer than 50% of the population want the current lot in power, and a system which forces coalitions would be a lot more honest.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Hot Spanish tongue action

Vincent Ballard

I don't think I've seen tongue on any menus over here in Valencia. Maybe it's just a Castilian thing?

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No Santa, no Irish boozers and no regrets: life in Qatar

Vincent Ballard

Re: Irish Bars

You don't have to be out of the UK for the entire year, just for 75% and a few days. (I can't remember offhand whether the maximum number of days you can spend in the UK in the fiscal year is 90, 92, or 93. And I think they've changed the way they count them since it mattered to me, so I don't know whether it's stroke-of-midnight or any part of the day).

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NASA asks world+dog to name Mercury's craters (back off, 4chan)

Vincent Ballard

Planetary nomenclature is themed. Scientists get craters on the Moon.

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Trousers down for six of the best affordable Androids

Vincent Ballard

Re: Not mentioned: Moto G v2 also has Dual SIM

Apparently the Xperia M2 is also dual-SIM.

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