Feeds

* Posts by Michael H.F. Wilkinson

2490 posts • joined 24 Apr 2007

Sharp shows off 8K4K hi-res prototype telly

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

I saw a similar high res machine on display

It was a 6k3k demo AFAIK. The models on display on it did not really like the result, as it showed all kinds of blemishes on the skin ordinary HD does not. Make-up artists will have to go to new lengths to keep Hollywood stars looking picture perfect (silicone skin anyone?)

2
0

Post-Jobs Apple: New research shows Cook will do fine

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

I would have thought

a big mouth and loud voice would do.

0
0

A Farewell to Oates: Adios, El Reg

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Pint

So long and thanks for all the fish!

Raises glass

8
0

'Devastating' Apache bug leaves servers exposed

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

So what is the name of this Apache bug?

Geronimo?

Mine is the one with the Karl May books in the pocket

0
0

Woman in strop strip for Bermuda airport customs

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Playmobil?

Or it did not happen

7
1

Nervous Samsung seeks Android Plan F. Or G, H ....

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Nah

There are plenty of Parks and Lees too.

0
0

Argentina: home of Bavarian lager

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

Yeast spores could potentially travel far

even by wind. So maybe this species of yeast is more widely spread than was thought.

1
0

Ofcom mulls smackdown for rogue religious TV channel

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

That could be seen as an instance of evolution in action

but then they would not believe you

and anyway, by NOT allowing this atheists (often) do have a strong sense of ethics, and thus show that atheism != satanism. This confuses the hell out of the more mindless type believers (which are the ones "self-selected" by this channel).

Note that I have quite a number of Christians, Jews, Hindus and Muslims as friends, and none are mindless (mindless believers (or atheists) I tolerate, rather than befriend)

0
0

Amateur balloonists hit record 40,575m above East Anglia

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Pint

But they did get to the pub to finish their "work"

good planning, that

Beer icon, obviously

0
0

Boffins build powerful yet 'table-top size' atom-smasher

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

So we could have sharks

with frikkin' particle beams instead?

sounds cool

0
0

God particle back in hiding

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Just like quarks quirks have flavour

disappointment, in this case (also known as "rock bottom")

1
0

Afghan coppers trained with Playmobil

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Brilliant

You just cannot make up this kind of stuff!

0
0

LOHAN rival to inflate bulging orbs with hydrogen

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Mushroom

For added bang

fire the rocket payload straight up through the balloon.

I just like things that go WOOOMP

3
0

BOFH: Beer, shinies, death by fire, rats IN THAT ORDER

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Pint

Re: You need 3 screens

Play DOOM on 3 screens?

Don't be so modest, we have a set-up with a 3D immersive virtual reality system (like a CAVE)

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Pint

Brilliant episode

Really on form

0
0

LOHAN spaceplane project starting to shape up nicely

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

or a donut-shaped balloon

for a really weird-looking solution. The rocket could fire straight through the centre hole. You might even be able to get sponsored by any well-known maker of donuts..

I know such a balloon will not be available off-the-shelf, but it would look cool.

3
0

It's official: IE users are dumb as a bag of hammers

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

If I were needlessly nasty

I could suggest that Opera is so difficult to install and use, and thus requires more intelligence to use. As I have on occasion used it I know this is not true. It could be a small-number effect. If the number of Opera users in the survey is comparatively small, random fluctuation are more likely. It would have been nice to have error bars in the graphs, so we could judge whether or not the differences are significant.

0
0

Obama drops Twitter bombs on debt-ceiling foes

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coffee/keyboard

taxed too much?

Come over to the Netherlands, or most European countries. We seem to pay rather more.

9
1

'Missing heat': Is global warmth vanishing into space?

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

Re: Wha?

You should go to the parties with the finite improbability machines.

1
0

Jupiter spacecraft mounted atop bloody big rocket

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Mushroom

Bloody big rocket?

Of course it's bloody big! Would you prefer a damp squib?

0
0

Apple MacBook Air 13in Core i5 laptop

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Visa should be CUDA

Bloody autocorrection

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

I am looking for a new lightweight,

For a machine this expensive, I would like more graphics grunt. For people who do not need OpenCL or Visa it may not be a problem.

0
0

Mega-colossal space raincloud found at moist black hole

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

So

I'll get me raincoat, I suppose

2
0

Nuclear Mars tank to roam imposing crater

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

How about using the lesser known virtues as names?

Tubso and Bissonomy spring to mind.

Mine is the one with "Going Postal" in the pocket.

0
0

BOFH: Axe handles - occasionally quite slippery

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

Cannot resist asking

which occurs more often?

PLEASE DO NOT ANSWER THAT!!

I'll get me coat

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Really nice

What will the revenge be?

1
0

AMD readies Bulldozers to ship next month

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Totally agree

The opteron machines here have been great. The old Xeons (pre-Quickpath) were not very good on shared memory parallel computing, because the front-side bus throttled the memory bandwidth. The opterons have given 75-80 % efficiency on 24 cores. Really neat.

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Interesting news

I am about to start looking a new machine (looking for something like a 48-core 256 GB RAM job), even if the bulldozers arrive too late, prices of older machine might drop.

1
0

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: Blu-ray extended edition

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Luddite that I am

I just read the books. Nothing about Gandalf's staff broken by the Witch-king in there (though only a purist would complain). I only got to see the Fellowship, and liked the more active role given to Arwen, so I will not say all changes are for the worse. I did feel the fighting was a bit much, compared to the more sedate pace of the book. However, if you kept to that pace, the film would have to become a (very long) series.

Regarding the increased length, Tolkien said in the preface to the book that the main criticism he agreed with is that it was too short.

3
0

Cameron: Murdoch son of Murdoch needs another grilling

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Flame

Grilling again?

Roasting over a slow fire is better at his age, to achieve properly tender results.

Flame set to low/medium

5
0

Big Blue boffins scan 10 billion files in Flash in a flash

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Thumb Up

I am not too surprised you got a response

because doing it allows them to show off their system again. And Big Blue does have a lot of smart people, AND allows them to talk to the outside world.

1
0

'There's too much climate change denial on the BBC'

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Actually, some "facts" are routinely manipulated

Like the output of weather stations in the USA to "correct for changes in the station's environment." This is not a good idea, it is better to let the raw data out, and explain any trends later. Anyway, the debate is not so much about climate change per se, but about the underlying causes. As we cannot see the causes, only correlations, it makes perfect sense to argue about that. It might well be argued that the Earth is unusually cold (starting in the Pleistocene), or that we are in an interglacial era.

Whatever the outcome of the debate, we still should not be wasting energy and other resources.

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Some very good questions indeed

I have read one report that the ice caps of Mars are receding, but the mechanism is not fully understood. We also don't have temperature readings over anything like the period we have for Earth. Venus is even more difficult, because it really is a runaway greenhouse, and surface probes do not tend to survive for any length of time (the Russians hold the record, I think). I remember reading a letter in Science in about 1989, that some Danish astronomers (IIRC) had found a 98% correlation between sunspot activity and temperature on Earth, over a period of some 150 years. That is quite a coincidence supposing there is no causal link.

Again, it is definitely wise to move towards more sustainable energy sources, but I am certainly not sure the solar cycle is not involved in some way.

2
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Say not: I will believe

say: I will understand

;-)

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Thumb Up

I live in the Netherlands

but still watch Beeb more than most other channels

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

As if science should be based on consensus?

Science makes progress whenever there is a lack of consensus. When everybody agrees, and we therefore think we are right (for a given value of right), and there is little incentive to refine our knowledge.

By contrast, whenever we disagree we work hard to prove the other guy/girl wrong. In the best cases, we do that indirectly, by trying to prove ourselves wrong. If we fail to prove our theory wrong, it may be right.

As an example, astronomy progressed a great deal simply from being annoyed by Fred Hoyle, who proposed preposterous (they thought) theories which were consistent both internally, and with observations (at the time), and very hard to prove wrong. They often were proved wrong, but the proof taught us a great deal.

If all scientists vote on an issue, say global warming, the outcome has no effect on the truth of the matter. Suggesting global warning has been proven beyond all doubt is not very scientific.

18
2

Fujitsu installs Windows 7... on a phone

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

Why does nobody ask

if it will run Crysis?

I'll get me coat

0
0

Hubble detects new Plutonian moon

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Thumb Up

and of course he is feeling that cold and lonely

so thumbs up to that name

3
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Alien

P4 stands for Pentium 4

Imagine the overclocking you could do at -240 ambient temperature

On the other hand, imagine the overclocking you would NEED to do to stay warm enough

1
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Alien

Plutonian Ice and Molases

New flavour of icecream? At -240 deg centigrade, it may be a bit cold in the mouth.

Still sounds better than the tunafish flavour favoured by Kzinti in one Larry Niven story

0
0

Mobile coverage comes to embattled Misurata

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Thumbs up to Ousama Abushagur

great work!

2
0

Python orgy menaces Yorkeys Knob canoes

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Coat

So the pythons showed

the full Monty?

Mine is the one with the Holy Grail DVD in the pocket

1
0

End of an era: Atlantis hits the tarmac

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Pint

End of an era indeed

I remember I was just painting the my first ever student room when the first shuttle was launched. I will raise a glass to the guys at NASA, who despite many flaws and problems, still gave us a lot to cheer about

7
0

Russia’s space telescope in orbit

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

They may have meant

the biggest space telescope, not the biggest satellite

Many satellites other than the Mentors can be seen by stargazers (even with the naked eye). With my 15x70 binoculars, I start to resolve structure in the ISS and similar sized satellites, but many others are readily visible.

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

Not necessarily better, but differnt

In astronomy, things get really exciting when you can line up different instruments on the same target, to see what it is doing at different wavelengths. Another important difference is that by itself, Spektr-R's images will be much poorer than any radio telescope on the surface of the globe. However, by combining its signals with ground-based scopes we synthetically make large dish, much in the way the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope, or the Very Large Array, or more recently LOFAR build up an image using multiple antennae to simulate a very large one.

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Doesn't being in tune to disease mean

dying horribly of causes we can now not only cure but often prevent?

Science and engineering are the main reason human beings have FAR more heartbeats during their lives than other mammals.

Astronomy actually came into being because we needed to predict when to sow and harvest.

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge
Boffin

A lot of good science is happening right now, despite cuts

Perhaps you should follow real scientific literature now and then and not rely on newspaper articles (which I know can be seriously disjoint from what the scientist actually said). The very science you deride has brought you all the improvements in computing power, and many real cures as well. The work I do as a scientist (computer vision) has ranged from determining whether a drug attacks a specific cancer before administering it, through detection of malformations in blood vessels, and automatically scanning through terapixels of astronomical images for peculiar objects, to supporting post-disaster rescue efforts by automatically analyzing remote-sensing images for collapsed buildings. In the latest case we brought down the compute time from 104 days (=useless) to 8 hours (=useful). I also know cancer deaths have been reduced for certain types, in particular in the case of certain early cancers (no work of mine).

There is a lot of excellent science being done, though I agree more could and should be done. Funding cuts are not just undermining scientific progress, but also the status it has in society (or more particularly bureaucrats). I also agree school science can and should be improved.

I would invite every capable worker in science/technology to get involved in doing just that, by spending time at schools getting children involved in science. I taught some basic science/engineering lessons at my boy's school (they are 7 and 9) and it is great fun. We also organize outreach programs to secondary schools close to our uni, and that too is really nice. Too bad that that funding cuts are threatening even that.

2
0

Intel CEO: 'Ultrabooks' will be 'holistic' success

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Quite right

In the words of Niklaus Wirth:

"Software is getting slower faster than hardware is getting faster"

3
0

Apple kills MacBook, soups up MacBook Air

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Is it Apple's implementation you have a problem with

or bluetooth in general? I have few problems with my bluetooth kit (under Linux and Windows)

0
0
Michael H.F. Wilkinson
Silver badge

Given Apple's attitude to Java

that is no surprise, at least as far as computer science students or any others that need to use Java code (bioinformatics anyone?).

0
0