* Posts by Mongo

485 posts • joined 26 Apr 2009

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Yahoo! must! face! class-action! suit! over! email! snooping! – judge

Mongo
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Re: Boo-frikken-hoo

Now then, now then! Where will we be if majestic business plans are allowed to crumble into dust just because they don't work?

But happily once the Trans-Pacific Partnership comes into effect then Yahoo! can try suing the state for undermining its "investment expectations", on the grounds that it is unreasonable that it shoulder the burden of complying with the ever-changing legal frameworks. And if that doesn't work it can try suing the entire US population since the phrasing "we, the people" surely creates joint and several liability for any acts that imperil Yahoo!s profitability.

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Win Phone to outgrow smartmobe market for next four years

Mongo
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Big Brother

Status: B.B. is loving his new Blackberry

Here's BB gaining another user:

‘They've got you too!’ he cried.

‘They got me a long time ago,’ said O'Brien with a mild, almost regretful irony. He stepped

aside. From behind him there emerged a broad-

chested guard with a long black truncheon in his

hand. ‘You know this, Winston,’ said O'Brien. ‘Don't deceive yourself. You did know it — you have

always known it.’

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VR rift OPENS UP: Total Recall Technologies hurls lawsuit at Facebook's Oculus

Mongo
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At last! The business use case for VR

You are gliding through an immense space filled with filing cabinets of legal documents. You gesture at one with your digi-glove and it opens, showing a seemingly infinite array of prior art. You reach out and

CRASH! OW! and in the real world you just hit a decidedly non-virtual brick wall

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GDS to handle Govt payments? What could possibly go wrong?

Mongo
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Time to update the acronym dictionary

We used to talk about an SPF (single point of failure) but in govt circles it's obviously now a GDS.

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Adult FriendFinder hack EXPOSES MEELLIONS of MEMBERS

Mongo
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Re: Oh no!

But when hanging them check periodically that the bonds are not too tight and that the mask (I any) doesn't hamper breathing.

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City of birth? Why password questions are a terrible idea

Mongo
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Damned lies

A few years back I cashed in the residue of a UK ISA (remaining balance just £1.50 but local tax laws forced it to be closed). No longer being in Blighty it transpired this would be a serious posterial pain involving sending of certified passport copies to validate signatures, etc, but their helpful man on the phone explained I could skip all that simply by registering for their internet banking access, then login and transfer the investment funds to wherever I liked. So off I toddled and being in a hurry and not overly concerned about the risk that some miscreant steal my half-a-cup-of-coffee's worth I pasted "sasquatch" into all the security question prompts. Clickety-click, done, now to close the account... "Please phone our banking service team for this request"

"Hello Mr Mongo, I can see your account number but first I just have to ask you some security questions...what was your grandfather's occupation?"

"Sasquatch"

"That's fine ... now what was the name of your first school?"

"(nervous giggle) Sasquatch"

"Ahhh...and was your first pet's name?"

"Sasquatch, too. I mean too as in also, not two as in the number...I really didn't expect I'd be telling these to a person, it was just a nice word to say..."

He kindly overlooked my embarrassed tittering, didn't go all jobsworth about this horrific breach of security best practice, nor yet accuse me of lying to one of Her Majesty's civil servants for pecuniary advantage. And (in my defense) no amount of dumpster diving or Facebook scraping would have revealed my family's secret shame that grandpa used to roam the American woods in a monkey suit.

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Spotify smashing new media paradigms with something called ‘video’

Mongo
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You're a jogger after my own heart

"<gasp> no I'm not taking <pant> a rest, I'm just <puff> selecting the next track on <pant> the music player. Music is <gasp> to be savoured like fine wine, one selects <puff> it with care to fit the <pant> moment"

I'll gladly add this to my existing sneaky-breather techniques: oh-no-this-damned-shoelace-is-slipping-again and the evergreen what-an-intriguing-view-I-must-just-quickly-take-a-photo (well to YOU it may be just a stained concrete wall near a scary council block but to this connoisseur's eye it merits a moment's <puff> contemplation)

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After #Election2015: How can we save Big Data?

Mongo
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it's both :-(

Horribly prescient article about our stupid inane future

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Well YES, Silicon Valley VCs do think you're a CRETIN

Mongo
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Unfortunately Mr Worstall is out of his depth here

He often provides interesting insights into real-world finance and economic behavior but can't offer us much on the wisdom of crowd-cloud-meta-ponzimatics, trapped as he is in the old paradigm of profit-orientation.

Perhaps Steve Bong could explain how this quantum leap makes us all winners?

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Are we looking at the first domain name meme? Neigh

Mongo
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Tickled the cockles

of my heart to think of Google sploodging on .meme as part of synergising the zeitgeist (or other such marketirrhea), only to find the shits & giggles nomads have set up tent on a different lawn

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Russia will fork Sailfish OS to shut out pesky Western spooks

Mongo
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Same old hokey-cokey

You put the NSA in

You take the NSA out

You put the FSB in

And you're back under the knout

You do the "*we're* the good guys"

And start the secret courts

That's what the new state's about

Poor old Sailfish - started as Nokia's great hope, now bedrock for Finland's historic foe.

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Jay-Z freestyle attack on Tidal's rivals leaked to Tidal's rivals

Mongo
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I'm just a self-indulgent consumer

And I'm not especially fussed which bunch of megacorp bastards wins any particular market joust, providing that my life keeps getting better.

So if Jay-Z & co can explain simply and clearly what's specifically in it for *me* right now if I switch my entertainment bucks to Tidal instead of their competitors then they'd be a step closer to a sale. That's how salesmanship used to work: tell me how you'll fix *my* problem, not how I can fix yours.

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Airplane HACK PANIC! Hold on, it's surely a STORM in a TEACUP

Mongo
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Re: Old news

How exactly is the MH370 investigation "hidden"? Interim report issued, status updates about sonar ships, etc, what more do you expect of an ongoing investigation - live-blogging and tweets about their choice of breakfast cereals? Several teams from several countries are working on a complex puzzle and often talking to insiders in confidence; of course they can't and won't just scratch our itch for updates.

And as for the aircraft manufacturers doing nothing, that's just a silly claim: if such a problem exists then it's the biggest liability and reputational timebomb for decades and they'd be moving heaven & earth to (quietly) fix it. Just look at the damage Boeing took from the 787 battery fires.

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Astroboffins perplexed by QUADRUPLE QUASAR CLUSTER find

Mongo
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What a nice headline

In science, business, politics or even theology [*] there's little so reassuring as hearing doubts being aired, rather than the usual dogmatic tub-thumping and shouting-down of alternative interpretations.

[*] not to be confused with braying chauvinistic wilful ignorance...

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Mongo
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Re: "a ten million-to-one chance of occurring."

It's big enough that almost anything possible is probably happening somewhere and sometime - but we also see just a single time and a small amount of space (much of which we've yet to look at closely), so it can still be unlikely that we stumble across a rare entity.

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Spotify springs bloody leak as losses grow to $197m – report

Mongo
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40% headcount increase!?

Given that their namesake product has been mature for years, either (a) elaborate new product coming or (b) they've crossed the management event horizon and will now continue to suck in staff until either financial or gravitational collapse ensues...

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OMFG – Emojis are killing off traditional 'net slang

Mongo
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Bangles re-release "TXT like an Egyptian"

Part of the driver could be messenger clients that automatically substitute emoji for emoticons, e.g. Like smiley faces in gmail

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Stubborn 'won't fix' Google U-turns on Chromecast vid judder twitching-eye blunder

Mongo
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Re: You mean there are places outside the USA ?

A modest proposal to resolve this, from Douglas Adams:

They were now on the very boundary of the historical consciousness of their race. This was the very limit beyond which none of them had ever speculated, or even known that there was any speculation to be done.

They flew out of the cloud.

They saw the staggering jewels of the night in their infinite dust and their minds sang with fear.

"It'll have to go," the men of Krikkit said as they headed back for home.

On the way back home they sang a number of tuneful and reflective songs on the subjects of peace, justice, morality, culture, sport, family life, and the obliteration of all other life forms.

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Burger me! Microsoft's chainsaw rampage through sacred cow herd

Mongo
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Windows

oooooh! good spot!

Demon Bill, the gentleman commentard's "microsux! M$$$$". Perhaps Eadon has escaped too?

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Airbus to sue NSA, German spies accused of swiping tech secrets

Mongo
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Only likely scalps are in Germany's own BND

But that would be a good start, not least because it undermines the corrosive "you spy on our domestics and we'll spy on yours and then we can both claim that we only spy on foreigners", which is nothing less than the deliberate flouting of the laws of the lands involved. And since having law enforcement deeming that it can ignore the law for the good of the nation is well down the slippery slope to police statedom, this should be applauded.

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Facebook serves up shaved, pierced, tattooed 'butterfly' as CAPTCHA

Mongo
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Next FB can start using b3ta's "female or shemale" quizzes

and obviously block anyone who gets them all correct (the first capcha that blocks bots and eerie people)

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Today, the US govt must explain why its rules on shutting down whole cell networks are a secret

Mongo
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Leprechauns, unicorns, and govt depts spontaneously relinquishing power

Three lovely fantasy creatures we won't see anytime soon.

Sad thing is that in any dysfunctional machine you'll find many bright hard-working nice people, well-convinced of the importance of their function.

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Microsoft's cash-leaking Nokia phones rip off patents, face import ban

Mongo
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Has MS forgotten to pay off the right Washington folks?

Since it is hard to imagine the ITC has simply abandoned its traditional function of protecting big US corporates.

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Hubble hits 25th anniversary IN SPAAACE – time for telescope to come home

Mongo
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>> removed one of the scientific instruments and installed the corrective device

A bittersweet day for that package's team: perhaps a decade of work preparing it, then it has to make way for the optics fix and all the glories and good data since. Hope the other teams bought them beers at the next conference...

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JUNK in your TRUNK is Amazon Germany's new delivery plan

Mongo
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Re: Idiotic

Well since today's version is often delivery vans leaving it on the doorstep (hopefully not in full sight of passing chavs, out of the rain if you're lucky), at the very least we can hope for an uptick in crowbar sales :-)

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Half a BILLION dollars later and, PHEW, we're all done buying up dot-word domain rights

Mongo
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The thing I most resent about this

is how much I sound like a luddite grandpa, ranting about the fundamental worthlessness of domains, vanity, what else the money could have gone towards, how Nigerian scammers avoid shaking hands with ICANN execs, etc

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Coffee cup-sized MIT machine can SEE actual ELECTRONS, boast boffins

Mongo
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tell me about it!

Not ten minutes ago I was in the dunny, door locked, savoring the private moment by scratching me arse and what do I find? Bloody neutrino right there in the room, bold as brass! I took a swing at it but of course the little bugger just scarpered straight through the wall, as if it wasn't there. Bloody migrant particles - when's the gummint going to do something?

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BuzzFeed: We don't pull 'articles' due to advertiser pressure VERY OFTEN

Mongo
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Ten bullshit excuses for editorial interventions you won't believe!

This one weird climbdown gave a Buzzfeed editor the world's biggest shit-eating grin!

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Apple will cut down 36,000 acres of forest in 'conservation scheme'

Mongo
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And if Tim Cook abandons capitalism to live naked in a cave

El Reg will castigate him for depriving bears of potential hibernating habitat...

Yes, there is NO activity without some deleterious side-effects. Including breathing. Even when done solely through the mouth.

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KABOOM! Billionaire fingers dud valve in ROCKET WIBBLE PRANG BLAST

Mongo
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Promising...but it still leaves the rocket 200 miles from where you really wanted it. So give the giant robot arm a whiffle bat (so as not to hurt the rocket) and clout it back to the launch pad (probably need a jumbo bouncy castle ready to land on: for the prototype could use lots of firemen holding a big sheet between them) The parts you need are probably all in the Acme catalog.

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Mongo
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Now put on your Michael Bay specs...

"Faster, godammit! What, call that a fireball!? And how long was that cut, what like 8, 9 seconds? Well get to the editing desk, we'll cut away to the chick three times, last time running in slowmo with the explosions. Yeah, there's a chick. Yeah, explosions plural, one per rocket. Oh you ARE kiddin' me now, just one rocket?

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So why exactly does almost ALL tech live in Silicon Valley?

Mongo
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>> I miss the cherries, plums, apricots, peaches,

Ah, the glory days of tech when every second computer had a fruity name (my school couldn't afford Apricots or Apple IIs, only the Franklin Ace knock-offs: sounding completely inedible they deservedly fell from grace)

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ICANN banked $60m from dot-word auctions. Just what exactly is it going to spend it all on?

Mongo
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Actually the first $10M has already been spent

Retaining FIFA board and Olympic Committee members to advise on best practice for fiscal transparency and tendering processes.

Presuming a successful knowledge transfer, the remaining funds will be found to actually have been a misreported accounting error, and in fact it will prove urgently necessary to hike .com fees.

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Scouts' downed Compass database won't be back 'til autumn

Mongo
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issues were around "potential access"...no one has hacked or broken into the system

I imagine this means that there's no evidence of intrusion: given issues about "potential access" then even if access is fully logged these records would have to be cross-checked somehow ("Scoutmaster Biggins, where were you on the night of the 17th? Logged in and downloading contact addresses?"). It's possible of course that the system is designed with multiple audit trails & so on, but if it was carefully designed and implemented they wouldn't be in the current pickle anyway.

Kudos though for reacting promptly and prudently, and discussing it frankly: many a professional organisation could do worse than go and get badges in a System Fuckup Postmortems and Avoiding the Streisand Effect

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Conservative manifesto: 5G, 'near universal' broadband and free mobes for PC Dixon

Mongo
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Re: tech centre of Europe

Actually they already have done this: self-agrandising wankery on a computer surely counts as "tech" to the policy wonk mind, and the lovely photo here of the lovely Dave quite near a laptop fully delivers the GDA dose of wankery.

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Bloke hits armadillo AND mother-in-law with single 9mm round

Mongo
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[sound effect: ricochet. Sound effect: body dropping to sand]

[LUKE's grin slowly fades as he lowers the pistol]

LUKE: uh...Uncle Owen? ... Aunt Beya??

[LUKE raises communicator to mouth]

LUKE: Uncle Ben! I do want to join the Rebellion! Right now!

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Seriously, stop claiming your two-buck photo app can detect cancer

Mongo
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Land o'Goshen! That seems to be a real photo!

Or at least Bridgeman are cheerfully selling it as a 1940s advert litho:

http://www.bridgemanimages.com/en-GB/asset/375525/american-school-20th-century/advertisement-for-snake-oil-1940s-litho

1940s seems rather too late: decades after boring regulations started insisting that active ingredients be present and even coincide somewhat with the label. So perhaps the full page would reveal it as a callback to the dark past, e.g. "No more 'Snake Oil' cures for mothers' little woes, thanks to Science and all-new cherry-zest Thalidomide!"?

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Woeful groans over Game of Thrones' spill on piracy sites

Mongo
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"Me? Couldn't care less - I'd rather..."

My favourite kind of topic! Can I just add that GoT is boring pablum for the masses, that I have NO IDEA AT ALL who Taylor Swift might be, that I wouldn't have a Facebook account if you paid me, that Charlie Chaplin was quite inferior to Husum d'Archiac, that...

...wait! WAIT! I haven't finished boring you yet!

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Twitter yanks firehose from DataSift, other resellers

Mongo
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"build solutions around Twitter data"

If Twitter was the solution, just what was the problem? And can I catch it from dirty toilet seats?

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Struggling through the Crystal Maze in our hunt for a spare CAT5

Mongo
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half-full-glass possibility: I used to work with Dabsy

half-empty-glass possibility: all corporate workplaces are equally fucked-up

It's the second one, ain't it? The doomed Doomed DOOMED one?

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Microsoft Lumia 640, 640XL: They're NOT the same, mmmkay?

Mongo
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So MS got perpeptual rights to Nokia's fucked-up numbering "schemes"?

I'd assumed they only had a three-year licence, as they did for the name "Nokia". They must have negotiated very hard to get the Finns to give up this piece of their corporate DNA, the ability to utterly bamboozle customers trying to guess whether a phone represents an upgrade, downgrade, or just the Infinite Improbability drive being switched on...

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Bad news everyone: Cybercrime is getting even easier

Mongo
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lunchtime!?

"...my pert & mouthwateringly succulent cul, tenderly shaved then drizzled with molasses dijon and accompanied by your choice of snowpeas or fava beans"

That put the nom-nom-nom back in your om?

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In the time it takes you to watch The Hangover, AT&T will pay a $25m fine for privacy scandal

Mongo
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revenue != profit

it's scabby "The Sun" journalism to conflate these ideas: I can't buy lunch with my gross pay cheque and AT&T has to pay the fine from their nett income (unless fines are deductible, etc)

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Do androids dream of herding electric sheep?

Mongo
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cart before horse

invent the robomouse first, then deploy the catdroids. of course it'll take a while before we get to the whole "The old female cyborg who swallowed a digi-fly"

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Astronomers battle plague of BLADE-WIELDING ROBOTS

Mongo
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Re: Methanol

It's a tough crowd - give them irony, they demand satire. Treat them to a bon mot, see it spurned for lacking badinage...

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Mongo
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Re: Methanol

EXACTLY! Never was there a clearer case of "give an inch and take a mile" - these unworldly boffins, emboldened as they are by draining the public funding teat of its vital essence, now want to deny us all the fundamental right to an immaculate lawn at the least possible effort! I put it to you, not even in Soviet Russia was this specific blatant denial of human rights attempted!

And why? So we can "better understand" the cosmos!? It's high time we stopped just looking at the laws of physics and started changing them.

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Frayed British Airways plays down mega hack attack on frequent flyer accounts

Mongo
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"verboten"

now then...now then! Don't you come on all strong on this 'ere UK website with those saucy, exotic, international-language-of-love swarthy-organ-grinder foreign-johnny johnny-donning phrases, or I'll have to dose myself with a cold shower & some liver salts

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Helium-filled drive tech floats to top of HGST heap

Mongo
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Re: Yeah helium, great

Foil coated balloons (specifically made for helium filling and so far less pervious than standard rubber ones) steadily lose both buoyancy and volume across several weeks before entering an apparently endless half-sized afterlife (observations terminated after some months when child finally persuaded that balloon had joined choir invisible). Interestingly the foil is only a little elastic at the outset and rapidly becomes flaccidso most of the helium loss occurs at atmospheric pressure rather than being "squeezed out" by the taut rubber membrane. So from this I guess that the contents is roughly half He and half dull (air? nitrogen), i.e. indeed only half a metric crapton of new-fangled HDD per wedding.

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Marathon race ace FOUND ON MARS – NASA boffins overjoyed

Mongo
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ROTM: little blighters can even run a marathon faster than me

And it's arguably better looking too. My only hope is that (like the Culture Minds) the machines keep around because the random crap I do is kind of cute.

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