Google are the company that bid Pi billion dollars for a bunch of patents a couple of years ago...
3974 posts • joined 18 Jun 2009
I think you'll find that's PENGUINZILLA!!!!
Re: Badger surveyor
Do badger surveyors also have to count mushrooms and snakes?
Re: Pastures New.
Apparently the Beeb didn't sack him, as his contract runs out sometime in early April, and they haven't signed new ones yet. So nope, there was no reason for anyone to find an excuse. Either side could have decided not to renew. The fact that they'd left it so late to re-sign suggests that at least one side had doubts about doing it again.
Re: @AC"5hrs" (whatever that means, ElReg)was: Welcome to my world, Mr. Dabbs.
My first proper laptop was an Amstrad 640DD
I wasn't aware that you could get mutant laptops with enormous cleavages back in the 80s. Truly it was an amazing decade.
With only ascii porn available online, I'd thought the 80s was all about typing 80087355 on calculators, and turning them upside down...
I guess this explains why you mentioned onanism in your post. Is that why you require a
winsock the size of a trumpet when using your Apple laptop?
Re: An environmental catastrophe
The El Reg comments forums are a vital service to humanity! Keeping potential serial killers off the streets...
Re: My first ever post...
Cures piles and even gets you a husband,
I signed up, my piles turned to solid gold, and now I'm married to a man called John.
Admittedly I wanted to marry a woman, but you can't have everything...
Re: Agree, but ...
I prefer the raw chicken diet. Just eat one raw chicken breast a day, and the weight will fall off you...
Fair enough. I agree.
This is an excellent cause. You've already done it, and don't fancy the culianary boredom again. Well you don't need your awareness being raised. I'm going to have a go this year, so you don't have to.
I'm also going to try my best to "show off" a bit by having an interesting variety of different niceness to eat on my £5 - but that's just for my own personal amusement. As TW says, the £5 should really be covering everything - but then I don't think the bank will let me pay just £1 towards my mortgage that week...
I was chatting about it this lunctime, as I blew more than my week's £5 on some prawns and noodles, that the posh coffee machine at work is 50p a cup.
We're just so lucky to have all this stuff available. Tonight I'm going to have a lovely salad of peppers, cucumber, rocket, cress and cherry tomatoes. But if I don't fancy that, there's bacon and eggs in the fridge or stuff in the freezer. All while sat in a nice comfy flat with an iPad to faff around with, and a world's worth of enteratinment at my fingertips. And Eastenders... (Should I ever be feeling too happy.) And I can afford all this variety of grub, for a relatively small percentage of my salary.
Re: True poverty still exists in the UK
Good heavens, someone's rattled you cage today.
Indeedy. And every day. Certain people in politics, often on the left but not exclusively, like to try to lay claim to the moral high ground. It is very annoying. I choose to challenge it. It's often used as a device to close down debate on topics they don't like. Or to try and win the debate by painting the opposition as 'nasty'. I think they should grow up, and try to win the debate by showing their ideas will work better than the oppositions'.
So I defend UKIP, even though I don't like populism or single-issue parties, because they have some valid points to debate, that have been pushed aside too often. And a right to make their point without being shouted down. I defend politicians (and politics in general) from lazy, childish faux-worldly-wise-cynicism pretending to be wisdom, about them "all being the same/corrupt/whatever". And I hope thereby to improve the quality of the discussion.
Re: True poverty still exists in the UK
Economists fix the world?! I've not laughed so hard in ages. Where were all the economists predicting the recent global economic crash, or 'fixing it' by stopping it from happening in the first place.
There were plenty of economists predicting that the last boom would end in a big crash. But then there's a saying, "economists have predicted twenty of the country's last two recessions"...
However some did. If you were reading The Economist any time after the late 90s, they were talking about how the imbalances in the global economy were causing problems. And how China (and the rest of East Asia to a lesser extent) were recycling their growing export surpluses into the Western capial markets. This was leading to an asset price boom and also lower interest rates. The "price of money" being artificially reduced would therefore lead to mis-investment, and inefficient use of capital. Of course calling the problem doesn't tell you when the disaster will actually kick off, or what form it will take when it does.
But there were plenty of voices saying that European and US governments were spending too much during the boom (or at least not taxing as much as they spent), and that consumers and companies were taking on too much debt.
This problem is now easing off thankfully. China's balance of payments is becoming more balanced, the drop in oil price means that OPEC and the Russians are now going to have to spend some of the money they made in the boom times, and hopefully that will rebalance the global economy somewhat.
Also, give economics some credit. It predicted that the Eurzone wouldn't work (to much derision at the time). Turned out that was correct. Our understanding of how economics works is far from perfect, but it does at least act as a guide.
Re: Oy, don't knock it 'til you've tried it!
It's not called the Pease Pudding Porridge Posse you know?
I know. It's rediculous that people keep spelling lose* incorrectly.
* Incidentally I just had a pop-up from my Samsung printer driver this morning about what to do if my printer looses connection... Aaargh!
Re: True poverty still exists in the UK
I think the reason people get so angry at your articles is that it's economics without compassion
How the fuck do you know that? What gives you the right to ascribe motives to other people?
Political debate would be a lot easier if people would start from the idea that other people are reasonably decent and trying to come to the best solution - even if they disagree on methods. You can start to make the case that somone's motives are amoral, immoral or even evil - when you have some actual evidence to back that up.
Economics is only ever going to be a blunt instrument anyway. It's not very good at looking at individual cases, because it's not very precise. It's hard enough just guesstimating GDP levels from 4-6 months previously, let alone working out the effects on individual members of society.
We'll never have a perfect benefits system that treats everybody equally and gets them what they're entitled to. Because all our systems are imperfect, because they're run by people. Even if we had a perfect system, that was fair, generous and properly run, we'd still then have to deal with the people claiming from it. Some of them are likely to be greedy, foolish or just accident prone (also being people) - so even after being helped perfectly., might still end up in a worse situation. I've known people to do really self-destructive and stupid things, and I've known parents to act incredibly irresponsibly and fail in their duty to their children.
We spend something like £2,000 per person per year on healthcare in this country. A kid born today has got a life expectancy of close to 100, so we've basically got a government insurance policy that is worth £200k for each of us. Add to that a promise of various benefits, including unemployment insurance, housing benefit and pensions. What's the basic pension now £6k for every year over 67? So that's another £200k of pension to add to the £200k of healthcare - and the other stuff you might be lucky enough not to use, and free education for your kids - and whatever the costs of the fire brigade and police would be. We have a minimum wage of £13k a year, and a national median wage of about £25k. Tell me again we're not one of the richest places there's ever been?
Re: Free market nut stew
To our anonymous friend,
You'll find that most free market economists will talk about market failures. Government has the job of dealing with these areas.
For example, a free market can't function properly without the rule of law. Otherwise you make a profit, and some bugger nicks it, so you stop investing. So by definition you can't have a truly free market without a government. And I've not seen any free market economist try to dispute that. Whatever the caricatures you may see made of the arguments. Stopping monopolies, making companies pay for pollution etc. are other cases in point.
In the case of the El Reg Nosh Posse, we're raising money for Malaria no more. Poor people who are also ill will struggle to improve their own lives. Poor people who have died obviously have no hope. So as well as the basic humanitarian reasons for wanting to help people avoid malaria, helping poorer people with basic healthcare should give them a better chance to farm or earn, a better chance to get a decent diet, and maybe more free resources to educate their kids, and/or get a business going that can allow them to help themselves.
I remember reading lots of stuff ten years ago about how Western governments should stop targetting their aid cash at infrastructure projects, and push it into improving healthcare. The drop in child mortality and illness would be both a good thing in itself, and also help people to sort out their own economies in their own ways. Drops in child mortality and the growth in the young end of the population also tend to lead to growth in the economy - when those extra kids grow up and start working.
I don't quite agree with you on politics be damned. One of the points that Tim Worstall has made in several of his articles is that not only are we in the developed world immensely rich, by both relative and historical standards. But also that globalisation has made a few billion people also immensely rich by relative and historical standards.
I think this is an important thing to chuck into the current political debate. There's various arguments on when it happened, but wage growth for the ordinary working person has recently stalled. I don't think it's a new permanent thing, but you could argue that it kicked in sometime in the middle of the last boom. Or there's an argument, for the US/UK, that purchasing power growth petered out some time in the 90s because of rocketing housing costs (more the UK), and soaring healthcare costs in the States.
Globalisation has chucked an awful lot of money into the Chinese economy in particular, also the rest of Asia, South America and quite a lot of African economies have been doing pretty well too. Much better than was previously thought, now that people have gone back and looked properly (partly becasue governments in Africa weren't spending enough money on their statistical offices).
So one thing that this might be telling us is that aid is less useful than trade. Which then leads to another political discussion. We've increased the global workforce, and therefore outsourced quite a lot of jobs, and that's made a lot of our stuff cheaper. Although has also hit wages. This has happened with industry and services. But we're still protecting our agricultural sectors, with lots of subsidies, tariffs and trade barriers. Even though agriculture is likely to be a way that the very poorest can get a chance of starting to improve their lives.
So how many more people's lives in the developing world could we improve if we traded fairly with them in agriculture too? In the EU we use the Common Agricultural Policy to increase the food prices to our consumers in order to enrich our farmers (and impoverish farmers in Africa). If we feel we need to protect our rural economies, might it not be better to have fair trade, drop the tariffs and therefore our food prices. And then use taxation to deal with the rural issues. Theoretically it should be possible to make almost everyone better off, and nobody worse off, if done right.
What is this raccoon flight of which El Reg speaks?
I believe the secret to lack of available fruit to make cheap hooch is cheap apple juice. That gives you cheap cider. Which you can then distill, should the mood take you...
I'll have a pint of your finest scumble please barman.
Re: Any other 5 Eyes El Reg readers forming vulture teams?
If you go to your own user page, it has the group shown in it. And only the donate button for that. They also do a popup saying your goodies to to the group.
Which is a shame. My charity was going to be the relief of distressed Englishmen unable to afford 50 year old whisky...
Re: Day in Day Out
It's an excuse for a charity fundraiser. Which you are free to ignore, as you wish. As a campaign it also makes a point, in an easily digestible manner, about how little some people have got.
You're over-thinking it though. As with all things, it should be approached with a sense of proportion, and a sense of humour.
From my planning for this year, and reading about the guys who've done it before, it's clear that this is not a good diet. Which is, after all, another point of the challenge.
It is true that you can easily live on £15-£20 a week, if you have time to spend cooking and budget carefully. Not only that, but you can eat well too. The fact that people don't is more a failure of education. We as a society haven't been passing those skills on to kids, either at home or at school. Only about half of my friends can cook, and I'm in my early 40s. I don't think schools have re-started teaching home economics since my day. They stopped teaching it before my day, round here.
Re: Fair warning...
its a shame I don't make jam. Perhaps it's time to make an emergency visit to the market, in hopes of cheap end-of-day fruit.
I'm planning to make bread during the week. I'm wondering what's cheap that goes with it. Other than baked beans? The correct answer is bacon, but that's not affordable.
So, how about the spices?
Is it cheating to pro-rata a cost to use stuff from my well stocked spice cupboard? In fact this could apply to other stuff, like tomato purée, tea, pasta, rice etc?
Am I allowed to take the cost at the bulk price I normally buy at, or should I have to pay the full whack for whatever I can use that week? Often poorer people suffer from this, as they don't have the cash to save money by buying in bulk.
What do the Commentard starvation soviet think?
Re: Any other 5 Eyes El Reg readers forming vulture teams?
From signing up to the website, which bizarrely seems to favour pale orange text on a white background (Aaargh!!!!!), it might be ignoring my charity setting - as a member of the El Reg group. So I think all donations go to the group, not me. I shall test this by donating to myself later on.
I don't know how other countries do it. But another reason for the UK site, is that charities can reclaim income tax paid on donations using Gift Aid. I think it requires the donor to declare themselves a tax payer, and give their address.
Re: The money? Seriously?
I like living in a country where our police make an effort to apprehend alleged rapists. I think that's a valuable social good.
I also believe in fair trials. I've done my jury service, and found someone not guilty because I wasn't sure. I believe the Swedish system is probably as good as any.
I admit, the costs lead me to suspect our police can't count though...
Re: @Anakin He twists and he turns
The High Court in the UK assessed the allegations and said that at least 2 of them would amount to rape under UK law.
Re: Statute of limitations ...
The Italian system doesn't work that way. In Italy you can have been convicted, but still get off on statue of limitations if you've managed to tie the appeal up for long enough that it doesn't go through and confirm the verdict of the lower court.
That's a particularly bizarre system. I know nothing about how it works in Sweden. However he's not been charged. Whether they could just charge him anyway, and claim special circumstances, I've no idea. Laws are a funny old thing.
It's a good point. But they probably can't force him to be interviewed unless they arrest him. And I'm not sure what the legal implications of that are. The police can't enter an embassy without permission of the ambassador or government. But if they've been given permission to arrest someone, does the embassy still have the power to stop them walking out of the door with them? I'd have thought they don't. You can't be a bit pregnant, and in the same way I suspect you can't be a bit arrested.
Although that's one for diplomats to settle, not me. And is probably another many hours of negotiation and timewasting they're going to have to sit through over this.
...which has seen Assange confined to the small Ecuadorian diplomatic premises in London for years
I'd argue with the choice of language from El Reg here. He specifically has not been confined - he was out on bail, until he did a runner.
It's one of those weaselly uses of the passive. "...has seen Assange confine himself to..." works. But I think I prefer "hide", or "skulk".
...which has seen Assange hide in the small Ecuadorian diplomatic premises in London for years.
"lurk" has a nice ring to it too.
He'd made noises about settling in Sweden before the allegations, so it's not like he can now claim Sweden is this terrifying banana republic, just lining up to export him to Gitmo.
Sometimes I get the feeling that his paranoia is genuine, and that he may now believe that it's all a plot by the Swedish to send him to the US. But then he went from there to the UK, which is arguably an even worse place to avoid the long arm of the US. Given our extradition treaty with them is a fucking disgrace (thanks Tony!). Not that I'm a fan of the European Arrest Warrant system either, but at least that's reciprocal. So while he's described as paranoid by every journalist who's dealt with him, it would have to be at genuinely insane levels for Sweden to go from safe to terrifying, the instant rape allegations are raised against him, while the UK remained somehow safe.
And the only other conclusion that leaves me with is fleeing from justice. Admittedly a paranoid innocent man may be just as likely to flee justice as a paranoid guilty one - but that's just tough shit. Everyone else has to hand themselves over to the police and defend themselves as best they can. So why not him?
Re: Is it wrong?
All valid points. On another thread, we were discussing the dot.bank registry, and I made the point that this would be run better on a national rather than global system.
Or it may never happen. The domain system may remain the slightly chaotic place it is now.
There is a possible business opportunity here though. Maybe... After all, someone has bet $150k on being allowed to set up a dot.bank registry.
Oh, or it may go horribly wrong.
Re: Telling quote
I think a dot.biz is better than a dot.co - unless you're Colombian of course.
But, even if unfairly, I do tend to take both as a bit of a bad sign about a company.
Re: Is it wrong?
You're going to give all your money to someone you've never heard of before just because they have a "dot bank" web site? Seriously?
What would happen if someone manages to poison Google so that a search for hsbc gives hsbc.scam, instead of hsbc.com? I'm presuming ICANN will have launced a dot.scam by now, given the high demand for it, and their high demand for cash... I doubt my Mum has her bank's website bookmarked, and so will be going through Google every time. A dot.bank domain would be useful for that.
Again, people often find out who's giving the best savings rates by looking at the tables in the paper. Obviously if they go online, they can click directly on a link (assuming that's working properly). But otherwise they're going to be typing cahoot (or whatever other odd term) into Google. Then probably doing their usual level of checking - i.e. clicking on the first link.
Whereas if everyone knew that dot.bank was where reputable financial institutions were, and you weren't allowed to register a dot.bank unless you were regulated by a legitimate national central bank (or banking regulator), then you'd have one less bit of guessing in the dark to do. If they were really on the ball the registrar could operate a national page, with best-of tables and the like, and then get cash out of the banks in the same way people like Money Supermarket do.
I don't think it'll take off, as there are so many hurdles. But it could work. Basically you could end up with curated bits of the internet - with more or less strict controls on who's allowed to register. Dot.xxx is already a bit of a model for this, I've no idea how it's worked out though.
Is it wrong?
I have got a rather childish desire to go out and buy myself a dot.ninja domain. Just for the amusement of telling people my email address. Is that wrong?
Most of the other domains look pretty pointless. Although I think dot.london, dot.scot and the like will probably do OK.
Part of the problem is the sheer number of them. And that the Registrars don't actually know their customers. So ours have been firing emails at me every other week seemingly, offering ones for digital photographers, plumbers, etc.
The other thinig I can see working is the likes of dot.bank. If they genuinely only allow regulated banks in, have some proper standards, proper security and go through the rigmarole of getting approval from national regulators. Then they might succeed. But they'd have to have some more secure way of finding the domain your after, like a dot.bank only banking search engine. And they'd have to spend lots of money on marketing, to convince customers that for financial stuff they shouldn't search Google, but go to info.bank and go from there. That's quite a lot of hurdles to jump.
You could do the same with a sort of internet approved traders scheme with dot.plumber, dot.electrician etc. But it would have to be much more of an approved operator scheme, than just a domain registry. And that requires proper investment, serious work, and some sort of standards and appeals/ombudsman process. So it's not just a get-rich-quick scheme. I'm not sure the Registrars are up to it.
I suspect the best bet is going to be the US keeping control of the IANA contract, and running things as a relatively benign dictatorship. While promising to relinquish it as soon as everyone else can agree on a sane way to do so.
There's an agreement to be had, but I wonder if anything's possible with the current leadership at ICANN? They seem too intent on gorging on the power and lovely gTLD money to do anything reasonable to sort out their governance.
It might put the cat amongst the pigeons if a bunch of the obviously now pissed off with ICANN senior internet great and good started putting together a rival to bid for the IANA contract though...
Re: Could be a good place to mine for diamonds?
Another use for concentrated heat and pressure is as a quicker way of cooking steak and kidney pudding. So hungry diamond miners might hope for that as well.
"We don't need to theorise what would have happened if dinosaurs had evolved brains, we can just look at crows"
That doesn't really work though. The evolutionary pressure was different after the extinctions.
Beforehand, there was evolutionary advantage in biggness - and being good at eating other things. So we had plenty of hugeosauruses and hungrysauruses. But was there an evolutionary niche for a brainysaurus? Someting like the Jurassic Park version of the velociraptor perhaps? Mid-sized, so needs to use other abilities to avoid getting eaten. By cooperative hunting perhaps, which might lead to the development of language and tool using. Given the right physical evolution. Just think how much better the Natural History Museum would be, if some of the dinosaurs were carrying rifles?
Re: Looks like the mother ship is still there...
It's a rule of science fiction that anyone who drills into the earth's crust in order to do 'geothermal research', is either lying and it's actually a secret government project to cause earthquakes, or dies horribly due to alien/supernatural horrors hiding at the bottom of their shafts.
It's a bit like going to an old isolated house/castle for help after your car has broken down in the rain. Something you just shouldn't do.
Re: Now we know...
Personally, I'm much more interested in finding a treacle mine.
Without the extinctions life would have been more stable and fewer new designs would have appeared. For instance the mammals got nowhere until the dinosaurs were removed.
So David Icke was almost right! We very nearly were ruled by 19 foot tall lizards...
Are you sure it's not to cash in on the success of the best film ever, Battlefield Earth?
Moving to SIP for international calls is for home users with relatives overseas; it is not for businesses.
I disagree. The call centres for my business selling anti-virus software, because Microsoft have reported that your PC has been infected, find it perfectly acceptable...
Life was so simple back then... when multimedia was using a Walkman while in the computer room and gaming was trying to beat the mainframe at "hangman" and "tic-tac-toe"
Well you say that. But I found that life soon stopped being simple, when I eschewed the pleasures of Hangman or chess, and decided to play Global Thermonuclear War...
Have a pint, for saying this:
History proves time and time again that the perfect boss for a successful IT business is not someone with smarts and goodwill but a sociopathic college drop-out with no qualifications and a vicious streak.
Re: IE 4. Oh gods, no...
Question: Which crashed more often, Active desktop or Winsock?
The horror, the horror, the horror.
Re: surely there was a reason that IE became so popular?
"Users" will do nicely. Everyone knows what you mean.
It has all the connotations of incompetence you require, without the childish nastiness.
"Sheeple" is a word used by arseholes and conspiracy nuts.
Also, non-IT people don't care about computers. They just want them to work. Technology is just the name we give stuff that doesn't work properly yet...
I'd forgotten all about Active Desktop until now.
How can the pollster say it's not a rogue poll? Margin of error on normal UK polls (using 1,000 people) is about 3%. That's 3% on both major parties, so you'll get normal variation in leads of up to 6%. i.e. if both parties are really on 30%, you'll normally get results of that, but every few polls you run will give a different figure - and every 20th (ish) poll will give you quite a big error.
Slo if one poll shows a sudden movement, it's meaningless until other polls have come along to confirm the data.
I don't know the margin of error on Icelandic polls. But the smaller the sample size, the more chance of randomness.
But would that work on the Lawyers? Cut off the head of one and two more arise...
As I recall, to kill the hydra, you needed to hit the heart. As you say, chop off a head, and more grow back. Unfortunately it's impossible to kill lawyers this way. There's no heart to drive your stake through.
Do flamethrowers work? Also Greek legend didn't mention the effect of nuclear weapons on the hydra, for some unaccountable reason...
2. Bend the to his own uses.
Who says that hasn't already happened...
On the first day of Christmas my true love brought to me,
A laser tank, with an RTG.
On the second day of Christmas my true love brought to me,
2 rovers roving,
And a laser tank, with an RTG.
On the third day of Christmas my true love brought to me,
3 satellites mapping,
2 rovers roving,
And a laser tank, with an RTG.
On the fourth day of Christmas my true love brought to me,
4 cameras panning,
3 satellites mapping,
2 rovers roving,
And a laser tank, with an RTG.