* Posts by John 62

977 posts • joined 15 Jun 2009

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MP resigns as security committee chair amid 'cash-for-access' claims

John 62

Re: resignation

Gerard Adams (SF, Belfast West) had to be given one of those offices when he resigned to stand for election to Dail Eireann (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerry_Adams#Election_to_D.C3.A1il_.C3.89ireann), which was a beautiful constitutional irony.

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Bloody TECH GIANTS... all they do is WASTE investors' MONEY

John 62

Re: Actually Buffet went further

I don't really know the specifics of RR's finances at the minute, but it has had a really rough ride and the people making money are more likely the bosses and the contractors, not RR's investors

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Euro broadcast industry still in a fug over that 4K-ing UHD telly

John 62

We've an ultracheap 22" 1080p capable TV (but too old for FreeView HD built in) so we got TalkTalk's cheapest YouView option*. The HD channels are much better than SD, especially for sports. However, I chanced upon the Graham Norton show the other night while channel hopping and it looked AWFUL in HD: the set design and lighting were utterly crap.

* yeah, it's a bit crap if you don't pay for extra channels, but hey, 50p extra per month for a year, then another couple of quid for 6 months, seemed cheaper than a Freeview HD box; and the YouView at least lets you watch iPlayer without using your laptop.

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Vodafone didn't have a £6bn tax bill. Sort yourselves out, Lefties

John 62

Re: TAX shouldn't be taxing

The people with Swiss Bank accounts couldn't bear the shame of sending their kids to state schools or using the NHS.

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$10,000 Ethernet cable promises BONKERS MP3 audio experience

John 62

Re: Speed of electrons

The electromagnetic wave travels about a foot in a nanosecond, but the electrons themselves don't go nearly so fast.

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Basic minimum income is a BRILLIANT idea. Small problem: it doesn't work as planned

John 62

Re: We already have this

Fractional reserve banking is obviously not necessary for an economy, but it's one of those things that we all accept because it gives us interest on our savings and free current accounts, like Google gives us free web services because of all the data it aggregates and then sells.

If we didn't have fractional reserve banking, I'm sure the politicians would have plans for all that capital lying around doing nothing.

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At the third beep, the Atomic Clock will be 60 ... imprecisely

John 62

Re: Another DAB "put-down" !!

I'm going with the analogy of DAB is to digital radio what NTSC was to colour TV. NTSC was a great idea and an improvement over black and white, but then PAL came along and had more accurate colours, but the US was stuck with NTSC because it had too much capital invested in it to change. DAB was a great idea and has the potential to be better than FM, but then improved digital radio technologies came along and left the UK behind because it was too invested in DAB.

(off topic 1: can you get a DAB receiver that can be switched on from the mains socket switch (without having to turn on at the unit as well)? You could do that with a cheap FM receiver! Meant you could keep the radio out of the way (e.g. top of a cupboard) and switch on and off at the mains without having to switch on at the unit, which can be fiddly for smaller units, often requiring two (clean) hands)

(off topic 2: yeah, yeah, some of DAB's problem is over-compression, much like Freeview/YouView, where SD broadcasts look awful, where they used to be nice and now HD barely looks better than analog)

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Uber isn't limited by the taxi market: It's limited by the Electronic Thumb market

John 62

Re: Regulation

Exactly, it's fear of liability in case of an accident that prevents things, not the HSE. Police prevent cheese rollers from rolling cheese because they fear being held liable for any injuries incurred.

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Chipotle insider trading: Disproving the efficient markets hypothesis

John 62

Markets are socialism!

When people are allowed to act in markets (unlike being shut out because prices are set by the force majeure), then markets are by definition the will of the people.

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John 62

Robert Picardo

Did anyone else keep mentally picturing Roberto Picardo, the Emergency Medical Hologram in Star Trek's Voyager era?

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John 62

low wages and the unions

The unions also fund Labour and Gordon Brown's great idea for being pro-business, pro-employment and pro-worker was to give tax credits to people on low incomes. The unions are mostly in favour of those tax credits because they raise incomes and are seen as redistributive, but as stated above, it is those tax credits which can act to depress wage growth.

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Why Windows 10 on Raspberry Pi 2? Upton: 'I drank the Kool-Aid'

John 62

Re: LOL

I know I'm citing Wikipedia, but Jeffrey Archer sold 250 million novels. Very few authors have had that kind of success. I'm struggling to find a comparable figure in IT. Maybe someone like John McAfee?

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The Year of Living Danishly, The Internet is Not the Answer and Classical Literature

John 62

Re: Metella est mater

Little amuses, etc, but our class loved the bit where Caecilius bought a new slave called Melissa, and Metella was not happy about it. We were all sad when SPOILER ALERT Caecilius died after Vesuvius's eruption and were pissed off we found out that his annoying son Quintus survived.

Caecilius in lecto recumbit, et ceteri, etc ceteri...

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Reg man confesses: I took my wife out to choose a laptop for Xmas. NOOOO

John 62

Person beside me at work has a Chromebook. I think they're very happy with it apart from not being able to use the remote desktop software for work.

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Healthcare: Look anywhere you like for answers, just not the US

John 62

Re: broken down into smaller and more efficient units?

1) Read the article: Vermont set up monopolies for each district, which Singapore did not.

2) Vermont has a population one quarter the size of Singapore's.

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Reviewed: LittleBigPlanet 3, Lara Croft's latest raid and more

John 62

Re: Anti-Pitt?

Took me a while to realise you meant Brad Pitt instead of the Mr Pitt who was Elaine's boss in Seinfeld season 6.

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El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.

John 62

Re: El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.

I came to the reg and there was only ONE HUGE STORY.

Bring back the carousel.

I found the last version was great for discovering articles. Too many storage stories, but the carousel at the top and the strip a couple of rows down highlighted a few stories for me I was most likely to read. Now there is only ONE STORY and it takes up my WHOLE BROWSER WINDOW!

BBC Sport's YELLOW redesign wasn't pretty, but it was mostly functional and highlighted the top stories well

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The Great Unwatched: BBC hails glorious digital future for Three

John 62

Re: BBC 3 or BBC 7

I don't mind the logos too much. What I hate are the 'animated snipes' like the Hotel Inspector striding onto the screen every five minutes beside a banner saying that she's on next after Hotel Inspector.

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Twitter App Graph exposes smartphone spyware feature

John 62

iOS dev's view

http://nikf.org/blog/twitter-ads-app-detection

tl;dr: an iOS app can scan for URL links it knows beforehand.

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HUMAN DNA 'will be FOUND ON MOON' – rockin' boffin Brian Cox

John 62

OBE == sir?

I thought it was just KBEs who got to be called sir.

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GOTCHA: Google caught STRIPPING SSL from BT Wi-Fi users' searches

John 62

Re: Like opening your mail

If you read Simon Garfield's lovely book To The Letter, you'll find out that the various postal services around the world have always been very keen to open people's mail. The difference now is the sheer volume of post makes it very difficult for them to do it except on a very targetted basis.

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MYSTERY Russian satellite: ORBITAL WEAPON? Sat GOBBLER? What?

John 62

Re: moonraker

Oh, you mean the crappy film. The book is very different and much better.

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John 62

Re: Panic!

Turkey is not dirty. Stupid when alive, maybe, but roast it is delicious. And a cheap alternative to chicken for stir fries.

When cooking goose, though, don't forget to put it in a very deep roasting pan, or put it on the wire rack, with a very deep roasting pan below it. My mum cooked our own geese one year and vowed never again because of the flood of goose fat that came out of the oven.

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FALL of the MACHINES: How to KILL the Google KARATE BOT, by our expert

John 62

Jujitsu, eh?

My sensei when I got my yellow bet in Tai Jutsu* said he laughed at Jujitsu because the stance was too narrow (I think for throws, specifically) and Tai Jutsu would help you be more stable.

* I'd never heard of it either, but the class times suited me better than the other martial arts.

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What kind of generation doesn't stick it to the Man, but to Taylor Swift instead?

John 62

Re: If the Beatles weren't paid so excessively they'd have stayed together

If you look at the histories of most of the most successful acts, like the Beatles, Fleetwood Mac and others, excessive amounts of money did contribute to their downfall, usually in terms of inflated egos clashing and drug problems, but I'd say the money only amplified the problems and their celebrity made it more apparent to the rest of us. Is the longevity of the Rolling Stones merely an accident? They got rich and wanted to stay rich, but they also were able to work together. Other bands wanted to stay rich, but couldn't work together.

ABBA, on the other hand, had the same intra-band relationship problems as Fleetwood Mac (most of their best songs are about break-ups and divorces they experienced in the band), but the money was far less of an issue. Mark Steyn has a great history of the band here: http://www.steynonline.com/5577/waterloo

On the other hand, a band's longevity can work against it. After all, if they keep producing new stuff, concerts will always have a tinge of disappointment if they don't perform your favourite song.

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John 62

Re: Let us face, top musicians and movie stars are now "The Man"

twas ever thus. The guilds protected the jobs of their members and made sure no-one else could do that job. Great if you were in the guild, but difficult to work in that field if you couldn't join or were kicked out. It's why big corporations often lobby for more regulation, because it keeps others from breaking into their industry. It's also swings and roundabouts. The workers on movie sets I'm sure used to be treated really badly, but now the labour unions in Hollywood control so much that it's often cheaper to shoot anywhere else (usually Canada, which also I'm sure offers tax incentives)

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Piketty-Poketty-Poo: Some people are JUST ITCHING to up tax to capital ...

John 62

Re: There is really only one taxation system that makes sense

Oh, yes! The golden bullet. That old chestnut of a small tax on all things, no exemptions, etc. But it is politically expedient to make exemptions. I don't think churches should necessarily tax free, but you might think charities should be. Best case, someone will write the rules but there will be unintended consequences that hammer the poor or discourage wealth creation. Worst case, the rules will be written by the people in power to enrich themselves and their friends.

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Snapper's decisions: Whatever happened to REAL photography?

John 62

On the subject of turning the camera on, my 400D's battery lasts so long* I never bother to turn it off because I'll be sure to charge it before an event anyway. In fact it's really annoying when someone tries my camera or looks at pictures on it and turns it off before handing it back to me. The only problem with this is that is doesn't regularly do the sensor shake thing.

* If I'm away from electricity it will even last almost a week with moderate usage.

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Want a more fuel efficient car? Then redesign it – here's how

John 62

Yes, but the Cortina didn't have all the extra gubbins the Focus has. Plus, the Focus is HUGE compared to a Cortina.

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Tesla's Elon Musk shows the world his D ... and it's a MONSTER

John 62

Re: Myth Busted

The problem with going into the back of your winnebago to make coffee is that in the event of an accident*, you are no longer strapped to your seat (and there is hot liquid going everywhere, though that may be the least of your worries)

* Granted, with autonomous vehicles, the accident rate may well plunge to negligible

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Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express

John 62

Re: There was one big scary moment for me...

I don't know why I read all this stuff, because I have no interest in actually watching Dr Who, but an appearance from Statto would get me watching!

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Vulture takes BlackBerry's Passport through customs

John 62

Why the downvotes? I came here to post this, too. iOS is much closer to UNIX than QNX.

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Was Nokia's Elop history's worst CEO?

John 62

Linux <> UNIX

Meltemi/Meego/Maemo: none of these are UNIX any more than Android is UNIX. They may be POSIX compatible, but iOS is the most UNIXy of the OSes.

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John 62

Re: Yeah right

Nokia was the last manufacturer with serious Windows Phone production volume and variety of handsets, but HTC and Samsung have also been chugging along with Windows Phone

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Microsoft and HTC are M8s again: New One mobe sports WinPhone

John 62

Re: One Mate

The Samsung UK site listing all its current Smartphones has a big Windows OS choice right under Android OS. Granted there's only one Windows Phone on there at the minute (Ativ S) compared to 52 Galaxy Android options, but it's there. Not to mention that Samsung has long been pretty OS agnostic. They've got their own in house OS (Bada, which was succeeded by Tizen) and they used to produce phones with Symbian and Windows Mobile.

The only hurdle to Samsung putting Windows Phone 8.1 on a Galaxy is Samsung's branding strategy, which currently identifies all Galaxy devices as running Android.

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Facebook: Want to stay in touch? Then it's Messenger or NOTHING

John 62

What does it matter if it's one app or two?

1) Turf wars. Facebook suddenly has two app icons on your launcher and twice the application storage thus blocking other potential comms systems, like Line/Telegram/etc.

2) Personally I want all my facebook stuff in one place. I only use Facebook private messaging very occasionally and only for email-style comms, not chatting (I don't really do online chatting). I would also like Lync folded into Outlook (the conversation history goes there anyway and Outlook can show presence just the same as Lync, so I'm not sure why they don't just make Lync an Outlook extension - I can't think of many MS customers who would be buying Lync without Outlook).

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John 62

Re: The less they care

Chat heads is one of the worst user interface designs I've seen. I use Facebook messaging for private messages, a bit like email (note I said Messaging, because I haven't installed the messenger app). I generally dislike online chatting.

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New BOMB detect-o-tech 'could give sniffer dogs competition': TRUE

John 62

Re: Curious about the dogs

"As I recall, Drugs dogs do well opposed to bomb dogs because the dogs are actually addicted to the drug(s) they are sniffing for. This is why they have a short working life."

Wasn't that Brian in Family Guy?

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Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land

John 62

Well, it doesn't have any other land anywhere round it. Supposedly there's a very isolated grouping of islands in the Pacific, but this is a single islet.

The English Channel services most of Northern Europe, which is a very densely populated and relatively rich area of the world, which just happens to keep very good records of shipping. http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/records-1000/busiest-shipping-lane/

As for airports, Heathrow is very busy (busiest in Europe), but Atlanta ATL is by far the busiest http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World's_busiest_airports_by_passenger_traffic#2014_statistics

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SpaceX FINALLY lobs six sats into orbit (don't mention the landing)

John 62
Thumb Up

Re: Tall items don't fall intact

+1 for mentioning Fred Dibnah.

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Can it be true? That I hold here, in my mortal hand, a nugget of PUREST ... BLACK?

John 62
Black Helicopters

Re: light enters the material, and is absorbed and converted to heat before it can escape

This material is very conductive to heat and is 'grown' on a metal surface (in the photo it's aluminium), so, yes, the heat will have to sink somewhere, but it could be dissipated easily if you have enough surface area on the other side or some other heat sink, like a ground contact, or the jet fuel like in an SR-71.

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We need to talk about SPEAKERS: Sorry, 'audiophiles', only IT will break the sound barrier

John 62
Boffin

Re: Choose better source material

lol! But it depends on the noise floor of the system :)

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Facebook: Yes, we made you SAD on PURPOSE... for your own good

John 62

News Feed was dead to me before I heard about this

The official line on Facebook's blog from when they introduced 'Top Stories' was that they were doing it for our benefit or we'd miss the new baby pictures from our aunt! But then again, back then they said Top Stories was only for when you hadn't logged in for a while. Now, while at least the website stays on Most Recent more than it used to, the default on mobile phone apps is for 'News Feed', which is the top stories nonsense. But it is dead to me because it lists posts out of chronological order and I know I'm a masochist, but every time I check Facebook on my phone I deliberately go to More > Most Recent.

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Retiring Reg hack explains how bass playing = tech reporting

John 62

Re: Fantastic analogy

I tend to listen out for the bass guitarist and am disappointed if I can't hear them!

Peter Hook is the exception that proves the rule that bass players should melt into the background of the song. He's possibly a one-trick musician, but I can't get enough of his bass lead lines! I saw Peter Hook and the Light live last year and they were brilliant, right up there with Pama International* for best concert ever.

* Finney didn't really look up for it that night possibly due to a wrecked knee, but even despite that he's one of the best singers I've ever heard live.

Mr Myslewski, I salute you and wish you all the best for the future.

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Saddle up for the Tour de Firmware

John 62
Alert

Re: Missed some

Not to mention that the Highway Code is very explicit, which means the majority of cyclist/pedestrian incidents shouldn't be happening in the first place.

64

You MUST NOT cycle on a pavement.

Laws HA 1835 sect 72 & R(S)A 1984, sect 129

https://www.gov.uk/rules-for-cyclists-59-to-82/overview-59-to-71

Though I have seen people ride past police on the footpath with no incident and I've seen police cyclists on footpaths and using Pelican crossings while mounted (bit like police cars and motorbikes cruising down the motorway at 75mph, grumble, grumble).

Sadly even when there are urban cycle routes, they mostly follow the one-way system designed for cars. Then the mixed pedestrian/cyclist areas are often designed in braindead ways to frustrate both cyclist and pedestrian.

Finally, though, I have seen photo evidence of a selfie of a cyclist and a policeman where the policeman was ticking off the cyclist for going through a red light.

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John 62

Re: Missed a few bits!

Road bikes can do anything an MTB can do! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhabgvIIXik

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Farewell Felix Dennis, deal-maker supreme of tech publishing

John 62

Computer Buyer

I spent a lot of money on that magazine as a spotty teen (though most of my mag money went to Future: Commodore Format and Edge; and EMAP: Mean Machines Sega, Sega Magazine (I've got the entire collection!)). For some reason I preferred Buyer it to Computer Shopper. Maybe it was because it was slightly smaller or I thought the cover discs (remember those!) were better. The John Diamond columns were a bonus. I always wondered why Dennis had two very similar magazines.

I heard Felix on R4's Loose Ends a couple of years ago, being interviewed about his poetry. He said he didn't care what the critics thought because he was selling loads of books.

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Coulson GUILTY of conspiring to hack phones between 2000 and 2006

John 62

Re: Brooks is FOUND innocent

Maybe I'm a bit of a conspiracist (too much X Files, Shadow Line and House of Cards), but someone must have known that the Milly Dowler phone hacking accusations would just be a convenient straw man that would divert attention from the very real corruption going on long enough for the people to forget about the shady stuff after the outrage faded.

Plus, as @DrPizza tweeted: if Andy Coulson could be found guilty under existing law, then why do we need new laws to regulate the press?

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Star Wars museum to land in Chicago

John 62

Re: Mashup time

I'm on a mission from the force. We're gettin' the falcon crew back together. Gotta save the padawan oprhanage.

[I cannot say enough good things about The Blues Brothers. It was amazing in every way (car chases, one liners, cinematography, music, the sheer scale of the thing!) apart from not having enough Blues music. Hopefully SW VII will be better than BB2000, which may have been a worse insult than SW I.]

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Blame WWI, not Bin Laden, for NSA's post-9/11 intel suck

John 62

Re: Mephhead Maphhead All Governments are ...(@ MasterBollocks)

Going back to the topic of the Federal Reserve being the cause of all ills: it was war with the French that meant King William III introduced the first UK government bonds, predating the Federal Reserve by quite some time.

And Jan Smuts of South Africa had wanted less punitive reparations on Germany. Though some historians have said that the treaty of Versaille's treatment of Germany wasn't as bad as many make out.

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