* Posts by Fred Dibnah

42 posts • joined 29 Oct 2008

Screwball ruble closes Apple's Russia store, whole kit and caboodle

Fred Dibnah
Thumb Up

Apple = Magrathea?

"The Magratheans went into hibernation, awaiting an economic recovery that could afford their services once more. Magrathea itself disappeared and its memory soon passed into the obscurity of legend."

(from the Hitchhiker Wiki)

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How HAPPY am I on a scale of 1 to 10? Where do I click PISSED OFF?

Fred Dibnah

Re: Although a fairly accurate and amusing portrayal of LHR security...

"It's only Western airports which take all the latest security paranoia from the US seriously, in Asia and Africa the airports either just go through the motions, or implement a tiny subset of security*."

I took an internal flight in West Africa a while back, and when my bag went through the scanner I'd forgotten that I had water in my drinking bottle. The nice lady at security simply asked me to take a swig then, noticing that I hadn't exploded, she let me take the rest with me and wished me bon voyage. I haven't seen that kind of common sense in Western airports for a long time.

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Stephen Fry MADNESS: 'New domain names GENERATE NEW IP NUMBERS'

Fred Dibnah

Well...

.. I think I'll let him off with a bit of artistic licence, because someone from an engineering company wrote this:

" Q. How many addresses will IPv6 accommodate? How does that compare to IPv4?

" A. IPv6 supports addresses that have four times the number of bits as those of IPv4 addresses (128 instead of 32). IPv6 is expected to accommodate, theoretically, an almost infinite number of IP addresses..."

Isn't a number that is almost infinite, er, infinite?

BTW the company is Cisco:

http://tinyurl.com/nll67w4

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Vinyl-fetish hipsters might just have a point

Fred Dibnah

Re: Thats got to be a wind up

I bought 'Who's Next' back in the 70s and put it on the family's hi-fi, but I hadn't noticed the speed was set to 16rpm. The piano on 'Baba O'Reilly' went on for ages and sounded very odd.

My first 'proper turntable was a Lenco L75, which had a conical pulley and a lever to continuously vary the speed from less than 16 to well over 78, plus a strobe disc to get the speed spot-on. Built like a tank, it was.

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Selfies are OVER: Welcome to the age of 'Sleeveface'

Fred Dibnah

Re: Years ago

".... someone or other doing this - with actual album sleeves - in the 70's."

Yep, been there, done that in the late 70s, with the cover of In The Court Of The Crimson King". What goes around, comes around.

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Ancient telly, check. Sonos sound system, check. OMG WOAH

Fred Dibnah
Happy

Horses for courses

The Playbar has an Ethernet port, so the author could connect the TV to that and use the Sonos Wifi to reach the Internet. Just a thought. Anyways....

I've got Sonos in three rooms and love the flexibility of the system.

My den has a Sonos amp into an 40-year-old pair of AR-2ax speakers, and it sounds bloody marvellous.

Living room: ZP90 line out into AV amplifier & KEF speakers - really good sound (not as good as the old ARs tho').

Kitchen: Play 5 - great, it goes loud, sounds pretty good, and can be wiped clean too.

I went to a Sonos-only dealer before buying, to audition the Play 5. The chap produced a tablet and opened Spotify, and was very surprised that I wanted him to play particular tracks that I know the sound of. He said that customers usually say "Oh, play anything you like, I don't mind". He was also reluctant to turn up the volume in case it disturbed the office staff below, until I insisted. All of which is, I feel, quite revealing of some people's priorities.

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Middle England's allotments become metric battlefield

Fred Dibnah

Obvious

The reference unit of length is the double-decker bus.

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Malaysia Airlines mystery: Click here for the TRUTH

Fred Dibnah
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@ Vic

"I flew over Greenham Common the other day - it's still a monumental gash in the landscape. I don't imagine you'd need to remove any vegetation."

You'd have to watch out for cows and dog walkers though.

Feel sorry for Michael McKay, the Kiwi working on an oil rig off Vietnam, who saw what looked like a burning plane in the sky. He reported it to his bosses and the Vietnamese did a search but found nothing, but the consensus seems to be that they needed to use more sophisticated search tools. Mike is probably sitting on his rig, shouting "Hello!? Is anyone lisnin'??" into the ocean.

There's a good thread (with intelligent and thoughtful discussion for a change) here:

https://plus.google.com/106271056358366282907/posts/GoeVjHJaGBz

Why do the media keep saying the transponder/radar/GPS/Landing lights/whatever were "switched off", when for all we know they stopped working, perhaps because of a fire? Easier to blame the humanoids I guess.

Was the plane really carrying a cargo of lithium ion batteries?

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Tony Benn, daddy of Brit IT biz ICL and pro-tech politician, dies at 88

Fred Dibnah

RIP

He was a decent bloke who stuck to what he believed in instead of compromising his principles just to stay in power (are you listening, Nick?). He was always interesting to listen to, and unlike most politicians he learnt lessons from history.

In the late 70s, when he was energy minister, he wrote something along the lines of: because North Sea oil was coming on stream, whoever won the next election would remain in power for at least ten years.

How right he was. And where did all that oil money go?

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Elderly Bletchley Park volunteer sacked for showing Colossus exhibit to visitors

Fred Dibnah

The clip is still here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=d5n9eVVtKeA

My partner and I visited BP a couple of years ago, and the 'non-museum' feel of the place was entirely appropriate given its secret origins. The volunteer guide we had was brilliant, and the tour wouldn't have made sense if it hadn't finished off with Colossus. Tony Sale (I think) was tending the computer, and his enthusiasm was totally infectious.

I hate to think what the place will become after Mr Standen and his minions have done their worst.

Is there a petition we can sign to protest?

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BlackBerry pie sliced up: Nuke-plant OS, BBM chat app, etc sale mulled

Fred Dibnah
FAIL

Re: One size doesnt fit all

I can, and it's not.

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Throwing arms let humans rise above poo-flinging apes to play CRICKET

Fred Dibnah
Thumb Up

Re: Throwing actions

The boys' wristy whipping action has other uses than just for throwing things, you know...

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All major UK ISPs prepping network-level porn 'n' violence filters

Fred Dibnah
Happy

The Great Firewall of London!

My name is Fred and I claim my £10. And copyright.

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James Bond doesn't do CGI: Inside 007's amazing real-world action

Fred Dibnah

Re: Not just an action movie

He adjusts his tie whilst he is underwater, not on the surface. That's the whole point, it's during a lull in the action and he does something uber-cool rather than have a swig of water or go to the toilet like us lesser mortals would do.

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Miniature Baumgartner jumps from 128,000ft

Fred Dibnah
Coat

Good use for an old condom

Fantastic.

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iPad mini to go on sale in one month?

Fred Dibnah
Thumb Up

Good on you

Pleased to see that in the picture on the headline ticker you used a real Mini, instead of the hateful BMW version.

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iPhone to account for half of US economy by 2030 - projection

Fred Dibnah
Thumb Up

@ AC 20:18

I will find out what happened to Marillion tomorrow night, when I go to their sold-out gig in Wolverhampton. Hopefully they will turn up and play. So it's not just economists who get things wrong, the Sunday papers got that wrong too :-)

Signed

A. Gingrocker

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TripAdvisor didn't defame hotel by putting it on 'top 10 dirtiest' list

Fred Dibnah

I mostly use Laterooms for hotel bookings, and their big advantage over TA when checking out a hotel is that reviews can only be posted by people who have made a booking. IMHO that makes for more reliable reviews.

A couple of years ago I stayed in a great B&B with really nice owners. They had had a noisy crowd in a few days before who decided to party until 2am in their room, breaking the beds by jumping on them. When the owners asked them to keep it down they were told that they would receive negative reviews on TA. Nice.

Apart from the photos I avoid TA.

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Post-pub nosh deathmatch: Bauernfrühstück v bacon sarnie

Fred Dibnah

Re: Where else in the world

It has to be Daddies sauce for me, rather than HP which is too fruity. Now back to watching the Olympics......

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How do you measure up at the Olympics?

Fred Dibnah
Happy

Re: Just Seen Proper Use of El Reg Units by BBC

Those would be double decker buses, shurely?

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Tesco grabs Peter Gabriel's musical streamer

Fred Dibnah
FAIL

Re: Self-service checkouts

When self service was introduced at petrol stations (showing my age here) they were an improvement because it was quicker to serve yourself than wait for the chap to amble out from the garage to do it for you. With self service checkouts in shops, what is the advantage? It's more hassle, it's often slower, and it's the same price, so the advantage is all to the retailer in employing less staff. If they offered a 5-10% discount for using self service, I'd be more inclined to use it, but for the moment I'll stick with the manned tills.

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Road deaths spark crackdown on jaywalking texter menace

Fred Dibnah
Facepalm

Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

Some people think they do: the Tory government is stuck firmly in the Victorian era.

I used to moan about having to avoid people who were texting as they ambled along, until I too received a must-read text which caused me to slip off the kerb and sprain my ankle. Never again.

Also reminds me of how my mum used to complain about the Saturday night drunks clogging up A&E, until she had one lunchtime glass of wine too many and ending up in A&E with all the other drunks. Never again again.

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Yahoo! finally! adds! Do! Not! Track! tool!

Fred Dibnah
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Re: El! Reg! Stop! Tiresome! Yahoo! Headline! Joke!

I! do! I have been using Yahoo! mail for years and it works just fine for me. What do GMail etc have to offer over and above?

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NASA shuts off Voyager 1's central heating

Fred Dibnah
Happy

@ Happy trails

One day millions of years in the future, when the sun has become a red giant and swallowed up the earth, these spacecraft (plus a lot of electromagnetic waves) will be the only signs left that we existed.

Of course we might have developed interstellar travel by then, but it's still a nice thought.

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Apple Thunderbolt Display 27in monitor

Fred Dibnah
Unhappy

"..the only way you’d be unable to make out what’s on-screen would be to..."

...use it in a room with lights on, where they are reflected off the oh-so-glossy screen. OK for watching TV and films, but hopeless for use as a, er, monitor.

Rant over

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Yamaha RX-V471 5.1 AV receiver

Fred Dibnah
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Why? Because

you may have a Sonos or Squeezebox player connected to it. Both have digital outputs, so if you want to be digital until the AV receiver, it should be able to decode the format. If it can't you have to use the analogue outputs instead. FLAC is becoming common now so any new receiver worth its salt should support it (IMHO).

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Pumped-up radio telescope seeks new moniker

Fred Dibnah
Happy

From Down the Line...

Spantana!

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Why modern music sounds rubbish

Fred Dibnah

@ Alan Brown

"every station cranks out decent bandwidth if you listen with a good tuner."

In the UK and Europe, AM transmissions have an audio bandwidth of 5kHz, which is going to sound horribly muffled even on a decent tuner.

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Fred Dibnah

@ There is a Technological Solution Damn it!!

It has been done on radio - DAB can transmit Dynamic Range Control information. Turn it on in the car, off on the hi-fi.

The first analogue radio station that bought a compressor to 'be the loudest on the dial' was only the loudest until everyone else bought their own compressors. So now they are all equally loud, and all CTF (a well-known technical term).

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Aunty squirts serendipity into TV apps

Fred Dibnah

@ ironic move

The licence fee is paid by UK TV-watchers, not overseas ones, so it's perfectly reasonable for the Beeb to restrict access from outside the UK.

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UK.gov would pay to have benefit claimants' tattoos erased

Fred Dibnah
Alert

NSFW

For a drama about a similar situation, look up 'Loving Taylor':

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0412943/

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Library e-books to become too tatty to lend

Fred Dibnah
FAIL

eBooks don't go on fire

The ebooks themselves might not burst into flames, but the device you're using to read them with might, if it has certain makes of battery. Of course if you're reading by the pool you could throw the 'book' into the water to put the flames out. Oh, hold on...

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Traffic-light plague sweeps UK: Safety culture strangles Blighty

Fred Dibnah
Go

Green lanes

In Portugal they use a similar idea to enforce speed limits - as you drive into a village on a main road, your speed is clocked, and if you are over the limit the traffic lights in the middle of the village change to red for a short time. Once you realise what is going on, you tend to keep to the limit. No speed cameras required. Simples.

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Fred Dibnah
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@ Let's deal with a few more fallacies...

Point 2: Having had a fall off my bike (empty slippery road, no traffic, nobody's fault but mine) which gave me a broken elbow and wrist, I must disagree with you. I remember my head hitting the ground but I suffered no concussion, but the foam of my bike helmet was cracked in two. Without that helmet I think I would be more of a dribbling gibbering idiot than I already am.

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US woman @theashes gives in to Twitter, flies to Sydney

Fred Dibnah
Flame

It's....

...an ancient and subtle game played all over the world, but at which (like football) Scotland is not very good.

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Beeb ordered to release TV licensing contract sweeteners

Fred Dibnah
Happy

Many moons ago...

... I worked for the BBC and undertook a small project installing a medium wave transmitter for a BBC local radio station. We had to do field strength measurements at 500m, 1km, 2km etc from the transmitter, so my colleague drove our BBC-badged Land Rover to points on the map at those distances. He'd then stop so I could twiddle the knobs of the measuring kit, which was a laptop sized box with a whip aerial. As we were frequently stopped on residential streets it was amusing to see curtains twitching as people spotted our 'detector van'. No doubt the post office received extra licence applications from that estate :0)

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Virgin demands ISPs end broadband speed 'con'

Fred Dibnah
Coat

@ paulf

Hoist by my own petard. Curses.

Thanks paul (not Paul).

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Fred Dibnah
Headmaster

Seconds

The SI unit of time is the second (written in lower case) which has the symbol s (also in lower case). The only symbols which are written as upper case are the litre (L or l) and those derived from people's names, such as the watt (W) and pascal (Pa).

So 50mb/s is the correct way to abbreviate fifty megabits per second.

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Dell bespoke iron forge punts 'cloud' kits

Fred Dibnah
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"bespoke iron forge" ??

For goodness sake - these are boxes of electronics, not bridge girders.

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No refunds for ID card pioneers

Fred Dibnah
WTF?

Local Post Offices

Are you really saying that we should have kept ID cards in order to keep Post Offices from closing? That sounds like one quango justifying itself by supplying services to another quango. Scrap 'em all, I say.

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Lords: Analogue radio must die

Fred Dibnah

Er, yes I have

and it's excellent - I can drive from my home on the Welsh border (which is not officially in the coverage area) to any point east without any break in programme on the two national DAB multiplexes. If you have a proper antenna, properly fitted, then reception is solid, and the MP2 sound quality is not an issue for in-car use. You are aware that for digital TV, Sky, VM and Freeview also use the MP2 codec for the majority of their services? It's not the codec that's the problem, it's the low bit rate chosen to squeeze large numbers of channels into the multiplexes.

And I also have a phone (HTC Lobster) with a built in DAB receiver, which works for the whole day tuned in to Test Match Special. So no problem there either.

Agreed that this is a stop gap, and agreed that DAB+ would be a better option. But the UK was first to air with DAB and many people have shelled out for DAB sets, so maybe we need the govt to buy all our FM and DAB radios from us so we can go and buy nice new DAB+ ones. So much for the environment.

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BBC's speak you're branes collapses under Brand-Ross sex outrage

Fred Dibnah

@Tim Spence

So, Tim, you resent other people assuming you've been offended. Well, as a fellow licence fee payer, I resent *you* assuming that *I* don't give a fuck.

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