* Posts by Peter Simpson 1

1442 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Costa Rican authorities detain drug-smuggling pigeon

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
WTF?

A black pigeon?

0
0

Huge explosion kills 44+ in China, blasts nearby supercomputer offline

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge

A WAREHOUSE...full of EXPLOSIVES? Who the hell thought THAT was a good idea?

Sounds a bit silly -- explosives companies are usually pretty careful about how they store their product, being aware of its capabilities.

Usually...but not always:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_Fertilizer_Company_explosion

Perhaps it was a warehouse of ammonium nitrate fertilizer? I don't understand why you would be storing that amount of explosives at a port (unless, of course, you were the military).

0
0

Exploding Power Bars: EE couldn't even get the CE safety mark right

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Mushroom

Let me guess...made in China?

How many times do we need to reiterate this: if it's made in China, treat any certification marks with extreme skepticism.

I've seen China manufactured devices with FCC compliance marks. Only problem is that under the FCC mark, you're supposed to print a code which identifies the manufacturer and the device. And you need to have submitted the device to the FCC for testing before that code is issued. What's a poor Chinese manufacturer to do? Use a code they found on another device, of course. The FCC in an uncharacteristic display of efficiency, has a website on which you can input the code and see the manufacturer name and product model number associated with it. Surprised they don't match what you hold in your hand? You shouldn't be, if it was made in China.

Here's a test. Take a CE-marked mains-powered consumer device made in China. Disassemble. See how many creepage and clearance spacing violations you can find. Then ask yourself: did a competent safety testing organization ever see the inside of this product? We won't even get into the voltage ratings on the capacitors.

iPhone charger teardown: http://www.righto.com/2014/05/a-look-inside-ipad-chargers-pricey.html

I'm sure there are many fine products built in China. My iPhone is one of them. But the "do anything you have to to make money" attitude still seems strong in China. Until that attitude is changed, there will be exploding products made there.

7
0

Apple and Google are KILLING KIDS with encryption, whine lawyers

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
WTF?

Re: Eat fewer doughnuts

Yer not kidding.

I was vacationing on Martha's Vineyard last week. President Obama arrived, and the Massachusetts State Police Motorcycle Unit was present to block roads so His Greatness could pass through, unimpeded by us plebs.

Every single one of those motorcycle cops could stand to drop 100 pounds. The amount of guttage was amazing. I mean, stereotype and all, but these guys must sit around the garage chowing down on Dunkin's finest for the entire shift, every single day.

6
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Holmes

Dad was Secretary of State under Carter and Secretary of the Army under Kennedy and Johnson

0
0

Typewriters suck. Yet we're infinitely richer for those irritating machines

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Teletypes

(should really do this all in UPPERCASE, but I take pity on you all)

Before I went off to University, the one thing I really wanted, was a Teletype machine for accessing timeshare systems. I managed to find parts of one, and an anonymous, but very kind technician at Teletype's local repair facility built it into a working machine for me...for almost nothing.

I took it to school with me, used it for 4 years in my dorm room (apologies if you lived below me) and managed to get a job repairing them for the university computing center (this job also came with an unlimited time and memory account on the mainframe!). So, not only did I have a job, I learned how to repair my own machine and never had to worry about trudging downhill in the snow to use the public terminals...all my assignments were completed in the comfort of my dorm room.

When I graduated, I took a summer job at DEC's Westfield, MA plant. They happened to make "glass teletypes" there, VT52 and VT05. One of the perks was that employees could buy defective gear from the scrap pile. I bought parts and assembled my own VT05 (which required troubleshooting and repair before I could use it) to replace the Teletype. Graduate school was 300 baud time! Fortuitously, the acoustic coupler I had purchased for the Teletype was capable of higher speeds!

The good old days. I don't miss them, but I sure had fun doing things the hard way.

7
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

VW Beetle

I had a '59 Beetle. Total death trap, but I learned much about how cars are designed and how they function, by removing and repairing brakes, engine, electrics, etc, at age 16. I would not have had it any other way. Cost me $150 and I sold it two years later for the same amount. I saw it once again, so I know the new owners got their money's worth. All except for the Wolfsburg badge off the bonnet...I still have that.

No windshield washer on mine, but the AM radio worked! And I learned that AUF meant down and ZU meant up when trying to figure out how the pole jack worked...clever, those Germans.

edit: I must add, as I think about it 40 years on, that the '59 Beetle, designed as a "people's car" was a masterpiece of design, for a low cost, manufacturable, basic city car, it was really a work of art.

// insert Yorkshiremen joke here

6
0

Germans in ‘brains off, just follow orders' hospital data centre gaff

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Black Helicopters

Re: Probably air con fear

Google "Korean Fan Death".

// those things can kill ya!

0
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Zere vill be NO installink of new aircon wizout the proper papervork!

2
0

What a shower: METEORS will BLAZE a FIERY TRAIL across our skies

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: Wrong title

Yeah? Well, enjoy it.

Rain here today, predicted to last through Wednesday morning. You can pretty much use a meteor shower as a (rainy) weather forecast around here.

8
0

Get thee behind me, Satanic mills! Robert Owen's Scottish legacy

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Mushroom

New England

We have an old mill or two around where I live, as well. At age 10 or so, Mum took me to a still-working wool weaving mill in New Hampshire (apparently, she knew the owner or something, and we got a tour which you would certainly not be able to get today, even if the place was still running, which it is probably not). Impressive and noisy is all I remember.

Lowell Massachusetts has a whole National Park built around the old mills (which, though I live within 50 miles, I have never seen...must remedy that). http://www.nps.gov/lowe/index.htm

There is also, in Rhode Island, the New England Wireless and Steam Museum, which hosts an annual "Steam Up", where steam is generated and restored mill engines, rescued at not inconsiderable expense and effort (these things are big and were frequently below ground level) from abandoned and not-so-abandoned mills are powered up, as well as models brought by visitors. Well worth a visit if you're here at the appropriate time (which, this year, is Saturday, October 3) http://www.newsm.org/

// no steam icon?

4
0

NIST in suspected 'meth lab' blast: US Congress is demanding answers

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: proper lab protocol...

My Mum used to tell the story of her family parties in the Prohibition years. Her dad was a surgeon, and as such, was allowed to buy pure ethanol...as much as he wanted. "Bathtub gin" was what she called it.

// icon's for the morning after headaches

1
0

HP slaps dress code on R&D geeks: Bin that T-shirt, put on this tie

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge

I wear polo shirts from companies I *used* to work for. Also ones given to me by vendors and friends. Any logo's a good one, as long as it's not the company you're currently working for.

10
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

When I worked at Data General (a long time ago)

We once had a new director who informed us that we would be having "Casual Fridays". As an engineering group, we had never heard word one about dress, the implication being, that if all the naughty bits were covered and you didn't smell too bad, you were good.

Our group arrived Friday morning dressed in our "interview suits". Nothing more was heard about the matter.

// a photo was taken...I run across it occasionally

4
0

Legendary Brit physicist Stephen Hawking gets full Intel comms refresh

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Ignorant and Intolerant Main Stream Media Provides Perfect Protective Cover ....

... more easily understood than your post.

You must be new here :-)

0
0

Blessed are the cheesemakers, for they have defined the smidge

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: I reckon I can cope with the antics of....

Oh, shuttup, Big Nose!

3
0

How British spies really spy: Information that didn't come from Snowden

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Why are they not more often in the news ?

''our monitors went ping over xx people who we shall investigate''.

You're saying they have the machine that goes "ping"?

It's very expensive.

13
0

Neil Armstrong's MOON spacesuit: One small donation from you - one giant leap for Mankind

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

46th anniversary

I've chucked in a donation. It's a shame they need to beg, but having the first suit on the moon on display would be a good thing. If we can't get approval for the LOHAN flight from the FAA, maybe we can get Neil Armstrong's space suit on display.

2
0

Driverless cars banished to fake Michigan 'town' until they learn to read

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Fantastic projets

And the double-decker bus is now a convertible, its computer having failed to process the bridge height restriction in time...

3
0

An EPIC picture of Earth, sunny side up, from one MEEELLION miles out

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Joke

What, Australia? They got the US...where the money comes from :-)

0
0

UK.gov makes total pig's ear of attempt to legalise home CD ripping

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Americans find fantastic new use for drones – interfering with firefighting

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
FAIL

Re: Dumb question...

Perhaps, but certainly the laws of common sense, which seems to be alarmingly absent in today's yoof.

// agree, they should have dumped the water anyway...drones be damned.

5
2

German army fights underground Nazi war machine hidden in Kiel pensioner's cellar

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Pity it wasn't a French tank

"What idiot would sit around trading fire without moving?"

AKA: shoot & scoot

0
0

Farmer mooved after reunion with two-year fugitive cow

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

The grass is always greener...

0
0

Lawyer brands client 'small penis asshole' before challenging him to a DUEL

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: I wouldn't normally do this but...

Bonus points are awarded for using all three (or four) in the same article.

4
0

Foxconn to hire a million Indian staff in major base shift

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Great Escape?

Long March, surely?

0
0

Police investigate strange case of doughnut-licking pop singer Ariana Grande

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
FAIL

Saleswoman missed the obvious

She should have taken the whole tray, wrapped them up and handed them to the immature pop star, and asked her to pay for the now unsaleable merchandise. If she refused, call the cops.

// behave like a child if you want, but don't expect grown-ups to tolerate it.

5
1
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Pop singer behaving badly?

It's a job requirement, isn't it?

// have no idea who she is

2
0

Hardcore creationist finds 60-million-year-old fossils in backyard ... 'No, it hasn’t changed my mind about the Bible'

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: From a proud Bible thumper

BLASPHEMER!

Stone him!

Stone all of them!

// obligatory Python reference.

0
0

Call that a mugshot? Aussie model/fugitive asks rozzers for more flattering pic

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Good God !!

I liket The Random Capitalization in his Posts.

// I find it to be a fairly reliable indicator of lunacy

1
0

Identity protection outfit LifeLock picked, popped

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Lol

I believe their CEO is aware of the attitude of people like you.

So, in a bid to demonstrate how well his offering worked, he publicised his own social security number.

...and his identity was promptly stolen.

http://www.wired.com/2010/05/lifelock-identity-theft/

3
0

Teaching people to speak English? You just need Chatroulette without the dick pics

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Megaphone

Re: Chatroulette without the dick pics?

I thought we'd all agreed that dick pics are appreciated by *no one*?

// especially, women

// maybe the word hasn't got out?

0
0

KRAKKOOM! SpaceX Falcon supply mission to ISS EXPLODES minutes after launch

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Refreshing to read ... TRUTH

It's nice to be above average, then. I have never watched Fox "news", and even CNN has shifted over to more talking heads than hard news. I get mine from BBC.

We're not all idiots over here in the colonies, but you could be forgiven for thinking so, if all you go by is our "news" media.

4
0

BOFH: Don't go changing on Friday evenings, I don't wanna work that hard

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Rule #1

Perhaps it's Rule #1 on page 42?

// now, where did I put that book of rules?

2
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Rule #1

"Simple" changes...often aren't.

// that's why we don't do them on Friday afternoons.

// simple...if you don't understand the details, that is.

1
0

Microsoft's magic hurts: Nadella signals 'tough choices' on the way

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Linux

Re: Old rant...

THIS. So much, this!

Microsoft: Do One Thing Well.

You are, or can be, good at building software. Stop adding frills, and build the best g*ddamn word, spreadsheet and presentation software in the world. Build software that people *want* to buy, not software that's rigged with incompatible file formats, so they *have* to buy it.

Forget, please, about competing in the phone marketplace. Apple and Android own it and you don't have the experience or the products. You (sort of) still have a chance in the gaming market...only because Sony is as clumsy as they are. But please, just forget about hardware and concentrate on building the best software in the world.

You're welcome.

3
0

Britain beats back Argies over Falklands online land grab

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: How about a swap?

Let me know how it goes when the Scots are told that their new national language is Spanish.

// I see blue bottoms...

7
1
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Argies are too late

Perhaps the Falklands domain could be changed from .fk to .fku?

To emphasise to the Argentinians the fact that they're part of the UK, of course...

15
1

BT: Let us scrap ordinary phone lines. You've all got great internet, right?

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Down

Re: One big problem

Three questions:

1. How long will your mobile work without being recharged. Mine lasts 2 days. And, as it's an iPhone, I can't "do" a spare battery.

2. How long do you think a mobile tower can operate without mains power? Depends on the size of the tank for the generator, but 24-48 hrs is what I have heard. Then someone had to drive up there and refuel it.

3. Cell site overload. The numbers have improved with digital, but still an issue, especially since all those with nothing to do will immediately get on the mobile to their friends, to discuss the fact that neither of them have anything to do. Tough luck if you have an emergency.

Yeah, it's better than nothing, but cellular can't hold a candle to POTS in robustness or reliability.

// have an old Western Electric phone...ever since the power went off and my cordless didn't work...duh?!.

1
2
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

One big problem

Internet doesn't work for long if mains power goes out. POTS is powered by batteries at the central office. Designed that way so that the parts likely to fail are all in one place, and easy to fix.

I understand the economics and the reasons for this, but I have a soft spot for the old copper system, which, if it were allowed to, would outlive me, because it's so damn well designed and built. I have much respect for The Telephone Company, their engineers and craftspeople, may they all rest in peace.

In My World, you'd have a single fiber connection for fun, and a POTS connection for when you really need it, like when you need an ambulance and the power's out (and the little dinky made-in-China backup battery in your fiber interface has long since departed)

// don't forget who Tommy Flowers worked for...

56
1

Whoops, there goes my data! Hold onto your privates in the Dropbox era

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: TLDR - Urgent

And I'd prefer not to think about the edges of the boards and their little glass fibers that stick into the skin, oh, so easily, and itch for a week!

0
0

THEY WANTED OUR WOMEN: Neanderthals lusted after modern humans

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: Terminology

"...I am fighting for the work of the Lord.." --

...said every leader, ever.

2
1

Mum fails to nuke killer spider nest from orbit

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Holmes

Re: Really? The WERE Brazillian Wandering Spiders were they??

If you'll check the linked article:

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/weird-news/mother-attacks-worlds-most-venomous-5927056

You'll notice the spiders were identified by none other than the distinguished entomologist Chris Tosney, in reply to the frantic mum's Facebook post.

0
0
Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
WTF?

I couldn't help but notice

The photos in the linked article showed a white fuzzy patch (presumably the former home of the offending arachnid) which looked remarkably un-stepped-on.

Bananas usually look a lot more worse-for-wear than the example in the photos after being stepped on.

1
0

Webmail password reset scam lays groundwork for serious aggro

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Insane

Ask me for a phone number, you're getting my work number.

Ask me for my email, you're getting my "for orders only" email

Ask me for my ZIP code when I'm purchasing something at a shop, you're getting my work ZIP (or a random one).

Any more questions?

// yes, I actively try to pollute databases...

7
0

Cambridge’s HPC-as-a-service for boffins, big and small

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Holmes

Funny how little has changed

First photo: Respected boffin and guy-who-does-the-real-work pose in front of impressive hardware

Second photo: Suits pose in front of impressive hardware (guys*-who-do-the-real-work noticeably absent)

* intended to include female "guys" as well

7
0

Arkansas Kum & Go onanist did just that

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
WTF?

SCID

You know how I know the Springdale plods have too much money and not enough to do?

On the brighter side, there's obviously no real crime in Springdale.

1
0

Phone scamming up 30 percent last year: Report

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Linux

Re: Somehow

I happened to be at home for the last tech support call my wife received. She said nothing, smiled, and handed me the phone. Which I promptly took over to my Linux Mint machine, and played along (the menu items are similar enough), strung the poor sod along for a good 15 minutes, until he gave up and told me to call Microsoft.

It was at that point that I, still playing the unfortunate computer user, asked him if I should tell them I was using Linux. His response had us giggling for another 15 minutes.

"Fuuu..." [click]

// since 1993

3
0

BOOM! Stephen Elop shuffled out of Microsoft door

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Facepalm

Other than XBOX, mice and keyboards...

...with what hardware has Microsoft ever made money?

Kinect, I guess.

Remember the Microsoft KIN Social Communicators? Died a month after introduction, and you can bet the development costs weren't insignificant.

Microsoft does software (passably) well. They should stick to it, build the best software they can and support it well. The term "best" does not at this time, encompass Office, Visio or Project. They all have flaws, some of which have existed for years. However, they all also have shiny new UI's. This says something about MS's priorities. (Hint: they're concentrating on form over function)

Stop releasing every year, stop changing the UI, go back to building quality....

Ahhh...why do I even bother?

6
1

Philae warms up nicely, sends home second burst of data

Peter Simpson 1
Silver badge
Happy

Re: quaternary, quinary, senary....

NO! NO! NO!

There'll be no singing!

Get back to work!

3
0

Forums