114 posts • joined Monday 15th June 2009 11:52 GMT
Same thing happened to me a while back after I'd purchased two T-shirts from a well known, cognitively nerdy purveyor of geek tat. I paid the retailer including shipping to the UK. Goods were delivered, this time by Uninterruptable Power Supply. A couple of weeks later, *bosh*, a demand for payment of what appears to be utterly made up bollocks to the equal value of my purchases.
My reasoning was the same as yours. My contract was with the retailer and I've paid the shipping charge. If they contracted it out to someone else that's not my problem. I ignored it and heard nothing further.
Seems a common phish.
Wot, no Tron?
I spent a lot of pocket money on that and it had the best looking cabinet in the arcade!
Also: How the hell is "Asteroids" not in this list? Space Invaders and Asteroids were the two staples of my arcade experiences.
Purpose of the fine
IMHO isn't so much designed to be punitive to the body they are fining but more a big show "pour encourager les autres".
I've had the conversation regarding purchasing IT security solutions. "If it hasn't happened before, why should we spend tens of K making sure it doesn't happen in the future?" When the ICO raised the max fine to 500K then it suddenly made financial sense to buy the kit just in case.
Now the ICO is actually handing out large fines and I think the message is that these numbers are actually real and organisations really would be staring down the barrel of a six figure sum unless they spent some money now to sort out their non-existant data protection regimes.
Some, alas, are still not getting the message.
Purpose of the tea
It should be noted that, throughout the course of a day the job of a cup of tea varies, from ohmygodwakemeupNOW tea through to five minutes relaxing with a biccy while The Archers is on.
In this specific case the job of the tea in question is to wash down an A90 Behemoth and so the careful selection and preparation of ingredients must be formulated accordingly.
Your palate will be full of the delicate, exhalted flavours of grease, salt, more grease and brown sauce. The tea must complement these flavours and not cause gustatory dissonance. To whit:
1) Take the first mug that comes to hand.
2) get a box of those "one-per-cup" red label teabags. Put two in mug.
3) boil whatever water comes out of the tap and pour into mug almost to the top.
4) using a teaspoon, handle end of a tablespoon or fork or whatever first comes to hand, stir, crush, bash and mash the hell out of the teabags.
5) continue until the tea is the colour of satan's dark, ebon heart.
6) remove teabags.
7) replace volume of removed teabags with milk. From cows. Colour of bottletop is irrelevant, it's a cup of tea not a fashion accessory, get over yourself.
8) add up to two sugars. Or don't, you won't taste it over the bacon butty anyway.
9) Finish Him!
Re: Instructions for enjoying Sci Films
Fiction isn't automatically enjoyable just because it's not a documentary. The Phantom Menace didn't become enjoyable just because it was set a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away (it was crap and El Reg has proved it with commentard-based science).
Yes, movies (and especially sci-fi) have basic elements that we ignore because it's a standard of the genre (fiery explosions in the vacuum of space, visible lasers etc...) and we've been trained to accept them without affecting our suspension of disbelief. I'm perfectly happy to just assume everyone lives happily ever after at the end of Return of The Jedi and not worry about the potential damage to Endor from Death Star debris.
If you want to drop Midichlorians (for example) or most of the scenes in "The Day After Tomorrow" (but especially the bit with the medicine and the cgi wolves that were obviously trained by the velociraptors from Jurassic Park) into your film, however, you're going to create a WTF moment and the audience are going to be pulled out of your story and find themselves back in the cinema or living room going "Oh yeah, I'm watching a film. And it's shit."
OK, firstly, I agree that a film must appeal to a wider audience than followers of a genre TV series. That one you can have.
However, if you are telling the audience that this film takes place in a shared universe with the TV series (which, let's be clear, the first Abrams ST film took great pains to hammer home the idea that it didn't) then you need to have consistency with what the TV audience expects. OK, I've done my time as a die-hard Trekker who knew intricate details of each episode and the background of the technology and basically enjoyed getting proper nerdy about it and if a writer had to take into account all of the shit I know about Star Trek they'd be pretty fucked trying to write an actual story. Shared universes and continuity are a bastard to keep going for long without writing yourself into knots. That said, if you ask the audience to go into your film on the basis of a shared universe with a popular franchise then you invite that criticism if your product doesn't gel with that audience.
Star Wars is a little strange in that even the books and comics are considered to be on the "canon" scale (SW has about three levels of canon, unofficially, with "it's in the movies" as top level) so SW fans have a hell of a lot of material in that shared universe to base expectations from.
Yes, it's fiction but if you want yours to be *good* fiction then you do need to pay attention to details.
Re: Well if you're going to be picky
633 Squadron was the direct inspiration for the final attack on The Death Star.
From the Wonkypedia synopsis of 633 Squadron:
"The plant is in a seemingly impregnable location beneath an overhanging cliff at the end of a long, narrow fjord lined with anti-aircraft guns. The only way to destroy the plant is by collapsing the cliff on top of it"
Sounds about right to me.
Re: Well if you're going to be picky
According to the old Star Wars RPG (West End Games) you are absolutely correct, it's to give a wider firing area, concentrated at the corners of your ship in order that you can hit the enemy without being completely head on (obviously nobody told Wedge Antilles).
Re: Star Wars is Science FICTION for a reason...
Not sure how far down the article you read but it states that this "investigation" was, essentially, a bunch of students using a familiar pop culture reference to conduct a thought experiment and (here's the whole point of the exercise) write it up and submit it to be refereed and be of sufficient rigour to pass review and get published. Part of their education rather than actual, serious, research.
That said, the University PR bods have obviously got wind of it and gone "Holy Star Wars Batman! That's guaranteed column inches! To the Pressmobile!" and flung the story from Leicester to the Outer Rim Territories.
Re: China mobile is so big...
Basically, if CM were to have a Foxconn-a-like build their own branded smartphones for use on their own ecosystem the whole lot would have to be beautifully designed and constantly innovated/upgraded because, with smartphones, if you can't have the New Shiny on one network you can jump ship to another who will give you your toy.
It would be a big risk to their huge market share to go that way when hardware and UI design isn't their core business strength as opposed to the likes of The Fruity Company or HTC, for example. Not to say they couldn't theoretically do so, as you suggest, just that it would be a strange race for them to enter, considering the risks, for the possible extra revenue from owning the whole experience.
Science finally answers the big question.
That explains Julian Assange, then.
Re: no access to router
My experience (and obviously my anecdotes are 6 sigma evidence and everyone elses are a load of bunk) is that, the first thing the installation engineer did after running cable was to give me access to the superhub so I could piss about with the settings and change the admin password. Dunno if he was supposed to do it or not but that's a different story.
Agree about the junk mail (though I still get more of that from BT and TrashTalk).
Re: Should the mainstream parties...
Well, UKIP have actually taken this up as one of their platforms so, potentially, the Laboural Conservacrats will have to pay attention at some stage if they can win a few seats.
Re: A bit off topic
The Fruit Loop?
Re: how long 'til it goes south
They'll juuuust about be ready to do a full space test of the technology and the funding will be cut because "we can't see the benefit over chucking up one expensive big satellite on a huge rocket stack." and that'll be the end of it. Until some enterprising foreign company actually does it and reaps the economic benefits.
Oh look. I appear to have my cynical hat on today.
Re: Why do I think of a "Bull in a china shop"?
For any game that's hosted online (MMOs especially) this will have just made them completely platform agnostic. No segregation of consols/PC users which will extend your potential player base and market. No minimum spec required to run the latest game. No need for me to buy the latest GPU in order to handle raid lag.
The flipside? A lot of these games have recently gone Free To Play with micropayment options for extra content/in-game items/fewer account restrictions in order to monetise a shrinking player base. A big, fat VGX-capable server farm hosting your games so I can experience the game at its best on my old PC at home is going to cost a boatload more to run that you can get from micropayments. The subscription model will have to return and, unless you forego the main benefit of no platform segregation or limitation, it'll have to be a single tier "pay up or piss off" subscription which, in the current state of the market, is a step backwards.
I'd pay, though.
Thanks for the link. I used to love/hate this game on the C64 because I could never get the two to meet and it was frustrating as hell but I couldn't stop loading it and having another go.
Now I can be crap all over again with prettier graphics.
Re: It's all or nothing
Sorry but it isn't. Every endpoint security package I know and have seen in anger allows you to specify how you handle non-trusted devices. Usually this is done with a hardware fingerprint (make/model/serial) and devices can be blocked completely, set to read only or set to read/write depending on any number of factors including the logged on user (Hello, Can-O-Worms).
Now I know this requires a software licence so this needs budget, as opposed to just locking down all USB ports which I think is what you're talking about doing. The technology does exist, though, and it's not hard to implement (if you have the dosh). IMHO this should be a core part of any enterprise infrastructure these days but, as with all IT security, it's hard to get a business case past the "It's never happened before so we don't need to spend money preventing it" financial firewall.
Re: It's a lovely idea but...
Read only access to non-trusted USB devices.
Which, by the way, is a posh watch manufacturers website not pr0n, flog a watch that I saw advertised in The Posh Murdoch Paper called the engineer hydrocarbon. The ad was basically a picture of the watch and lots of large numbers. Lewis may have some idea of why this matters with his background but I don't understand the requirement for:
1) Working at -40 degrees C
2) Shock resistant enough to survive a fall from space (my beermat calculations, admittedly)
3) Something I'd never heard of before (and still think they're just making up) called "Antimagnetic" to 4,800A/m
4) WR to 3000m
Unless the "requirement" is to have bigger numbers than The Bloke In Sales.
Given that my Desire Z struggles a bit with Gingerbread and I'm not suffering for lack of RAM I'm not surprised that HTC have given it a miss on Ice Cream Sarnie. I just don't think the 800Mhz CPU is up to the job, especially as they'll stick a fatter version of Sense UI on it as well (now if I could get an upgrade of SenseUI to v3 I'd be very happy. It's lovely).
I agree with your point, though, about having a premium price point phone engineered only for the here and now. With just a tweak to a 1Ghz CPU I suspect my Gingerbread experience would be bang on and we'd be looking at a reasonable ICS update, too.
Ah but can it answer the following?
Location of test: Local pub
Test equipment: 1x iPhone 4S with Siri, 1x HTC Desire Z running Speaktoit Assistant 0.3.6.1, 3x pints of Stella.
Question 1: What are the benefits of Jailbreaking my iPhone?
Siri: For information on your Apple product please go to the Apple website.*
STI Assistant: "Let me check that for you." provides link to "Benefits of Jailbreaking iphone - Hacking - iPhone" forum thread
Question 2: Why can't I run Siri on my iPhone 4?
Siri: For information on your Apple product please go to the Apple website.
STI Assistant: provides link to ZDNet article: "Siri, will you ever come to my iPhone 4?"
Question 3: When will the iPad 3 come out?
Siri: For information on your Apple product please go to the Apple website.
STI Assistant: provides search results including "Next iPad Coming March, But "Real iPad 3" Not Until Q3 2012"
Yes, I know that STI is basically doing a google search but I found it amusing that Apple have a list of verboten questions regarding Apple products that, basically, redirects to their website, closing the information loop.
Impressive, though, was that both assistant apps correctly parsed what three slightly wobbly blokes were asking them in a busy pub background.
*Paraphrasing as several pints had already been consumed in preparation for this scientifically rigorous test.
Re: Cue the moral outrage
As has already been said above, yes, paper documents are unencrypted and therefore insecure. The difference between this breach and a loss of an unencrypted USB stick is one of scale.
An cheap USB drive can hold 2Gb of data which can be a hell of a lot of database records or confidential documents. A quick google brings up a number which I'll just assume is correct because it looks nice. 500Mb gets you 10,000 pages of document. 2Gb obviously allows you to lose 40,000 pages of confidential data. 1x briefcase of paper allows you to lose maybe a few hundred.
Is it bad? Yes. Is it as bad as it could have been with a USB drive? No.
One less now
So, after being happy with Homechoice (apart from the self-cooking set top boxes) and then happy with Tiscali when they borged HC and, for a time, being happy with TalkTalk when they snaffled Tiscali I'm finally jumping ship and having Virgin Media come round to hook me up.
Why am I jumping ship now after all this time? Simple. My "broadband" speed hasn't gotten over 700kb/s for the last month and was usually 300-500kb/s. Consistently depending on time of day and day of the week. When iPlayer doesn't work and you can't watch 2 minute YouTube clips without waiting for five minutes for it to download then the connection is not fit for purpose (Yeah, I know. First World Problems etc...).
I don't know whether this is a policy that's been suddenly implemented across the TalkTalk network, local contention issues in my area or if the TalkTalk to Internet bandwidth has just gone to ratshit but I do know that TalkTalk consider 300kb/s+ to be "acceptable" and I do not. If others are experiencing the same problems as me then no wonder they're losing customers hand over fist.
The rest of the world only really knows Microsoft as the OS on their home/work PC. The history of the company, "embrace, extend and kill", security flaws, original Win95 release, Vista... all these things are unknown to them and therefore not going to figure in the decision to purchase a smartphone.
As has been said above the problem is brand visibility. Here are, IMHO, the "brands" that come to mind in the smartphone arena in rough order: "iPhone (not apple. iPhone), HTC, Android, Samsung, BlackBerry, the rest that are sort of the same but maybe not as good".
MS realised that Nokia's strong brand would be the best way to direct visibility to the WP platform. As the article mentioned I think MS should go exclusive on Nokia and allow the hardware specialists to produce awesome kit that just happens to run Microsoft's OS. Then maybe we'll be thinking "iPhone, HTC, Nokia, Android, Samsung etc...".
If you're down in Southampton
You're likely to get a decent pint of Ringwood Old Thumper. Also, since Fuller's bought Gales you'll get a nice pint of ESB if you go into a Fuller's pub. From a bottle you can get some lovely strong ales of which I have just devoured a Morland "Old Crafty Hen" and tonight will tuck into a Fuller's Golden Pride.
It all went wrong a few years ago when beers over a certain strength got hit with a higher rate of tax. This meant beers like Old Speckled Hen being nerfed from 5.2% on draught to 4.5% which ruined the beer. ESB got knocked down from 5.9% to 5.5% but that's not had such a detrimental effect on the flavour. Stella Artois got nerfed from 5.2% down to 5% as did just about every "premium" or "export" lager.
Portsmouth already have...
Fort Nelson on standby and the type 45 destroyer (shush, Lewis) simulator at Qinetiq for target acquisition.
With luck a few stray shells will "redevelop" the ward of Shirley, too.
Have a shared print queue but require the user to log into the printer/swipe card in order to release the print jobs from that user. That way the sensitive info is only printed out when the responsible person is there to pick it up, not lying around waiting for a data breach to happen.
It's used all over the place, especially where printing costs money so you can have a "balance" on your swipe card.
FLESH was my favourite 2000AD story by miles! Now available collected, I think, from the usual outlets.
Dinosaur fossils and Satan: Latest news from the Creation Science Desk!
I feel the need to share this (even if the whole world already knows about it):
Ask Professor Giraffenstein about the Dinosaurs and the fossil record.
Then ask yourself WTF counts as an "evil" Dinosaur.
From the 4th paragraph in:
"Stamos and fellow iSec researchers Paul Youn, Tom Daniels, Aaron Grattafiori, and William "BJ" Orvis found it was trivial to force OS X server to resort back to Apple's insecure protocol."
So setting the server to use Kerberos is irrelevant because you can 'sploit it back to donkey mode.
I knew it was Camelids but had a wonkypodium article on Mustelids open in another tab. I accept this Fail icon.
I'm sure there's money to be made out of offering put-upon rabbits the chance to get in a small helicopter and take hot lead-based vengeance on the mustelids, though.
This isn't about being green
It's about a business opportunity based on the trading of carbon credits and probably a fair bit of coin from people who want to hang out of helicopter gunships blasting the everliving shit out of some mustelids with high calibre weaponry.
The fact that the working of carbon credits allows this idea to even seem viable reflects on the state of the CC scheme very, very badly.
HTC Desire Z, one swipe gesture to FriendStream from the home screen.
What is the point of a dedicated Facebook button apart from a cynical attempt to cash in on the FB brand, on a phone already running HTC Sense?
@Andrew Jones 2
Well, yes, you've basically highlighted the main negative human effect of the damage caused to the Fukushima Daiichi plant (I don't think calling it a nuclear accident is fair as the accident was not caused by anything at all to do with the activities of the nuclear plant) has been the evacuation and exclusion zones and, of course, the disruption and suffering to human life caused by that is not to be handwaved away by saying "nobody died so no harm done".
However, a look at the facts as presented tells us that this exclusion zone was not mandated due to actual radiological risk to human health. It was mandated because, in the face of the same fears of the radiation bogeyman that Lewis' article is actually about, it was a political impossibility for the authorities to do anything else. I, certainly, would not be telling people "no, stay put, don't worry about it, it won't hurt you" even though the facts as we know them know say that they could happily have stayed put.
This is no different to, say, a large poison cloud from a chemical plant explosion. Compare and contrast, for example, Bhopal and Jilin to Chernobyl and Fukushima, in terms of evacuations, death toll and lasting environmental damage. Drawing your own conclusions is encouraged.
He didn't ask you to buy his pint for him and the stuff is heavily "sin" taxed anyway on top of normal VAT.
If he does drink himself to an early grave then you're saving on ongoing state pension burden, too.
Now, if you want to have a go at boozers for running up high NHS bills then you should turn your ire to the binging* obliviot fuckers who get so bladdered they lose the ability to avoid grievously injuring themselves and clog up A&E units everywhere on a Friday or Saturday night.
*As in properly lashing it up well over your usual limits rather than the "*gasp* TWO large glasses of wine in one night?" bollocks we're currently bombarded with.
Not just the UI
As has been said in the article and these comments, some of the UI was clunky and unintuitive such as the aforementioned tapping inside the text block which brings up a full-screen keyboard with small text input box when writing, erm, anything, for instance.
That said, as an owner of an N97 before the hardware died of fatal first-batch bugginess and now a 5230, I could have forgiven the UI foibles a lot more if the bloody touch screens had been responsive. I don't mind so much if I have to make an extra press somewhere if that press is handled quickly and accurately but it's the exception rather than the rule that this is the case and it is that lack of sensitivity and control, in my opinion, that does the most to ruin the UX by compounding the clunkiness of the UI.
I've played with a mate's N8 in the pub and, certainly, the screen feels a lot snappier so even the UI that's not been tweaked in S^3 seems so much better to use than the N97 or 5230 (and so likely the 5800, too). Ironically for a company that is described here many times over (and by other commentards) as a hardware specialist it seems to me to be the touchscreen handset hardware that caused the most user misery and this, surely, would have been a simpler quick fix that could have saved much of Nokia's touchscreen market-share.
Ah well. I get my Desire Z in a month or so.
I am breaking my cardinal rule of not posting on NHS IT stories.
The question in my mind is simply was this laptop issued by the Trust or was it his own personal jobby that he simply plugged into the network in place of the desktop that he was given?
If it's the former then it should have been full-disk encrypted so that, even if there was patient data on it taken beyond the walls of the Trust, it could not be compromised (at least, sufficiently difficult to say that the data remained uncompromised for ICO purposes). This would be something the Trust could control.
If it's the latter then the doctor in question must carry the can for breach of policy and the loss of the data due to that breach. If it was known that he was using personal equipment (and this is still purely hypothetical on my part as the article makes no mention one way or the other) then whoever authorised that use should also be required to explain themselves sharpish.
And our first of the day.
It was only a matter of time before some more ill-informed bullshit was spouted about the McKinnon case. Even after all these years.
1) McKinnon pleaded guilty to the UK offence. There is a huge difference in the offence he's charged with in the US and the UK offence under the CMA both in terms of sentencing and the facility he'd spend the time in. Essentially the US want to try him as a cyber terrorist. Over here he's just a naughty boy.
2) The whole reason this has been argued for so long is that the guy has been judged by the medical profession to be unfit to stand trial in the US but various government officials over a succession of governments don't know if they can use this fact to back out of an extradition treaty which demands that we hand him over.
3) Aarrgggghhh! I thought we'd been through this already!
Not the issue
Climate Change is not even close to the biggest threat to the rainforests nor can the rapid loss of rainforest habitat and subsequent loss of species be significantly attributed to climate change.
It can be significantly attributed to chainsaws and JCBs for both legal and illegal logging and clearing.
I'm a believer in climate change and that mankind's activities are contributing, at least in part. I also believe that our scientific models need a lot more work if we're to understand the mechanisms of CC and make reasonably accurate assessments of impact.
I also believe that CO2 emissions and contributions to climate change are the least of the ways in which we are fucking up the planet and causing extinctions. Let's have some more noise made about those, please.