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* Posts by ElReg!comments!Pierre

2100 posts • joined 22 Jun 2009

Ex-Soviet engines fingered after Antares ROCKET launch BLAST

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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@ Dan Paul Re: Depressing (I agree)

The problem is they got exactly what they DIDN'T pay for. If you think you can pay little to nothing (especially for a rocket motor), don't expect to get much in return.

I'm positive you have relevant rocket-related experience to back that up. Or not...

There's a saying popular with people involved in arduous tech matters, I trust you've heard of it: "If it ain't broken, don't fix it"

If you had read the posts in this thread posted by people who have more experience in this matter than both me and (especialy, apparently) you, you woud have noticed that it is even truer in the rocket design department (which should really be obvious for anyone with a brain, if I may).

I'm sorry if it sounds a bit harsh. I am really tired with people who, by pure lack of gorm, equate price tag with quality. It doesn't work that way, it never has. You think saying -or writing- "you get what you pay for" makes you look like a no-bullshit value-for-money person, but it really makes you look liike a complete drooling moron who needs to be milked for all his/her company have. That's pretty much the WORST thing you can tell a vendor for example. It's instantly translated as "I'm utterly out of my depth, please sell me your most expensive shit, and double the price of that". As should be.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Re:The simple fact is

PS

It may strike the overpondians as a surprise BUT (and I'm not making a political statement here, just stating common historical knowledge) the USSR went from what was middle-ages-level developpment stage to spaceships whithin 50 years. That takes some extremeley serious science and engineering developpment both in math and physics. I know a bit about academic physics researchers, I've worked with some, in Northern America no less. First thing you notice, half of them have been trained in the former "eastern Block" (that's USSR and it's allies of yesteryears). Second thing, when asked about a Russian physicist or mathematician, in most cases everyone will bow.

Thirdly, I know quite a few people at the NIH. There is a unofficial "appreciation chart" there, by country you were trained in. French people top the Life Sciences chart, Chinese people feature in the top 5 for all science fields, Russians (and close neighbours) top both the Physics and Mathematics charts. If you consider subcategories Brits are apparenty liked in physiology. Interestingly enough US-trained people never appear on the NIH chart, but that's a story for another time perhaps (research vs developpment etc).

In a nutshell: wherever physics and mathematics are involved, blaming the Russians is a stupid move. They are usually well-trained in both.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Re:The simple fact is

The engines, albeit 50+ years old, are solid. They have good engineering, a reasonable pedigree and just as important, there is an available supply."

Apparently not, though. Otherwise, no story.

Apparently not what? Not 50+ years old? Think again. Not solid? (for a few different meaning of the term, including "dense", which is a term I trust you are familiar with) Think again. Twice. Available supply? Think again.

I'ḿ sure you know someone who knows someone who died in a car crash. Do cars strike you as the most dangerous way to move around? (and yet to some regards they are, which kinda ruins my analogy but I don't afraid of anything, as they say, so there you go).

A rocket's job is to burn. One in a while one will burn in a slightly odd fashion for some reason (perhaps the range cleaner's wife left her handkerchief in the wrong place last time they had a "friendly meeting" with her hubby's boss, we may never know). It will then be detonated remotely by the range safety people, lest the Ruskies Japs Chinese Iranians think it's an ICBM or something.

It happens, rather rarely, but that's part of the job. It just happened. Why do you think it is required that the supplies on the ISS are sufficient to last for 2 sequential failure of resupply launches?

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Depressing

YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.

This being, of course, almost always wrong. It's surprising and quite a bit depressing to see how many poor sods cling to that common misconception despite being proven litterally everyday how wrong it is. Yesterday's example on El Reg was the class action about the MacBook, with the lawyers' blurb reading that people paid a lot of money so they expected more reliability than from a cheaper machine (Ha!). I'm sure you spotted other examples throughout the day; if you have a computer such examples are shoved in your face all day long: our corporate email/collab "solution" is a right pile of shite but did cost millions. The person seated next to me does her math and plotting in expensive Excel while I use free Veusz. LaTeX vs MSWord anyone? My bike cost me 1500 euros and is more reliable and faster than the equivalent from Honda which at the same "age" costs roughly 3x that price. Yesterday I bought 12 rolls of no-name toilet paper which seems to wipe my bum as acceptably as the branded equivalent that costs 2x the price. I could litterally fill pages with examples like these taken only from this week.

People just chose to ignore everything that doesn't fit their misconceptions it would seem.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Buck passing 101

The buck passing functions optimally only when the recipient is a well-established (or former well-established) Bad Guy (TM).

I'm a bit surprised that noone has blamed the poor battery life of the iWatch on North Korea or Iran yet.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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BIIIIG surprise

Must be them commies.

In much the same manner as the catastrophic loss of the Mars Orbiter was blamed on "English units" in the US, despite said units being used solely in the US, the Russian design will be responsible for this one. The Merkins can't do anything wrong, you see. Hollywood taught us so.

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PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Still refusing to admit

That its a 1GB download, not 5GB I see Jasper.

It's a bit irrelevant. I can install a full-fledged DESKTOP OS* in considerably less space than both numbers. That's after uncompressing everything, AND including a whole bunch of applications. Why the mighty eff does a mobile OS need to be so big while doing so little?

*complete and up-to-date, too. I'm not talking ancient or exotic OS, just a -somewhat tweaked- Linux distro.

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Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: eco-friendly lead-free solder, heh?

Bullshit, you really think Apple uses defective parts?

In the present case the product they sell craps out. Either they use defective parts, or a defective design. There's no other explanation. "you're holding it wrong" is not the kind of excuse you can re-use too often.

They have too much of a reputation and image to destroy with crap unreliable products.

I think you'll find their reputation has somehow survived so far, a fact on which I won't comment.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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eco-friendly lead-free solder, heh?

Not so eco-friendly when it means the product it's in goes to the bin after 2 years instead of 10+ ...

I gave up on that shit some time ago. Best eco-friendly decision I've ever made. Not sure why a big company like Apple still uses a solder that means people will have to buy replacement computers every 2 years. Oh wait a minute...

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Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: forced to use Skype on my Mac

I have just moved my family (and also a friends family) onto iChat (using google accounts), because old versions of Skype no longer connect. (The new Skype is Intel only and quite unpleasant to use)

So, jumping from a stupidly closed proprietary protocol to another I see. And in 2 years when iChat changes skin colour to something you don't like, you'll move everyone to TwitChat using MS Live accounts I suppose? And 6 month after that... what? Some people never learn.

Standard protocols. Use them.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Non-MS platforms

Alternatively you could have them move to SIP...

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BONFIRE of the MEGA-BUCKS: $200m+ BURNED in SECONDS in Antares launch blast

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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> While we don't know what the cause of the loss-of-vehicle was

"Hey dude, what do you reckon 12 m is in feet?"

"Dunno, just put 12, it's almost 5 and I don't want to be late at the Johnsons' barbecue they always have the best marinated ribs"

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LOHAN avionics survive 27,700m stratospheric ordeal

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: IF YOU DO GET IT UP THERE...

> NASA keep airbrushing them out of theirs.

1) They don't airbrush them, they use content-aware fill, obviously.

2) They don't do it to mask the "stars and constellations" but to hide all the alien spacecrafts that are out there. The stars are just collateral damage.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Pint

Great. Gardenshed boffinry rulez

Although with pursuit aircrafts on the table it's not really shed territory anymore...

Anyway, have a cold one.

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Even a broken watch is right twice a day: Not an un-charged Apple Watch

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Any patent experts out there?

I'm interested, but if you want to apply for patents your post is far to precise. Could you word it in a fuzzier way? Something along the line of

"innovative solution to shape in some ways the future and/or present and/or past of hardware encompassing, but not limited to, wearable and/or mobile and/or transportable technology and/or art piece, in any or all ways (fig.102 to 195)" etc...

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Is a broken watch is right twice a day? @Headley_Grange

Totally overthinking it dude. A mechanical watch doesn't really measure time, it's a mechanism that is designed to display a representation of the time. In other words, it doesn't internally store anything relevant to the time. It doesn't care if it's 3 PM, or 3 PM plus 0.264443 seconds; the only thing that matters is the position of the hand relative to the static display.

More precisely, the view that the owner has of the position of the hand relative to the static display. It's not always exactly the same thing especially on jewel-like watches with no marks, strangely-shaped displays and/or angled glass.

In short, a broken watch is right as long as you can't tell that it's wrong. Which is at the very least 2x 1 s per day, and 2x several minutes per day in the case of some "jewel" watches.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Is a broken watch is right twice a day?

Some lady watches can actually be right for a good 5 minutes when broken. That's the kind which is not terribly useful to tell the time when they're not broken...

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: A daily charge is fine IF...

> "hey siri what time is it"

That a sure hit* with the ladies I would imagine.

Assuming Siri can understand what surely sounds more like "hairy wedding zit?". Having to be articulate kinda ruins the point of knowing whether you can go back to sleep...

*As in "slap" perhaps?

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Bad old days.

> tended to drift significantly as the day passed.

Yes, back in the days you'd have to re-synch your watch once a day, using for example the 10h10 London Express. Nowadays watches don't drift anymore, which is probably a good thing, if you get my, er, drift.

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Mozilla hopes to challenge Raspbian as RPi OS of choice

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: me about the Zotac

I re-read my post and it comes across like an anti-zotac rant. That wasn't the point. I would like to play with the zotac, it looks pretty nice, although installing a proper OS would be my very first move. It's just not in the same category as the Pi, and for that price if I wanted the max bang for my bucks I'd get a chromebook. But bang-for-the-buck is not always what matters.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: selling point

Switch SD cards? Noobs multi-boot will fix that, though still need to reboot

The advantage of this solution would be? I see a lot of reasons to keep the systems on separate SD cards, and none for the multi-boot solution.

Or just buy a Pi to dedicate to OpenELEC

Yeah, I totally see how this would make more sense than my solution of dedicating a SD card to OpenELEC. NOT.

For a small, low-power desktop take a look at the new Zotac Pico wotsit. Seems quite good, though Win8+Bing and about 5x the cost of a Pi.

Not even close to being as low-power, and it's about 10x the price, not 5x. For that price I can have a laptop complete with monitor, trackpad and keyboard. And it's Windows. EIGHT. The Pico wotsit strikes me as a (failed) replacement for my Asus 900, not for my Pi.

But definitely more usable as a full desktop

That's entirely debatable. My Pi running Raspbian does very well as a full desktop. It runs Veusz, iPython, claws-mail, xpdf, Pycocuma, Midori, GVim and lout -even LibreOffice. Everything I need for work. Of course for video (including Youtube and the like) I have to turn to OpenELEC; so what? Different use, different SD card, and that's how I like it.

The Zotac Pico on the other hand, I'm pretty sure installing the Scipy/numpy stack and lout on this would be nightmare-ish, and the beast of an OS it runs means that despite the rather enormously more powerful CPU and RAM it's probably not much more responsive -if at all.

I really like the idea of being able to deploy the Pi (or an HDMI TV stick) as a thin client which could fire up a VPN connection automatically and launch a remote desktop session.

It's a bit of a waste of resources if you ask me, but that wouldn't be very difficult. I can't be arsed to check the google but there is even probably a SD card image or five out there that do exactly that.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: selling point

Well, if it has hardware acceleration all round (as the competition with both Raspbian and the unnamed media players would suggest), then it's perhaps worthy of consideration. Right now I do some browsing and desktop work on raspbian but I have to switch SD cards to watch movies (which means waiting a full 15 seconds for the Pi to reboot, insufferable ain't it?).

No seriously, hardware accel. for the desktop would be nice. Having that nice GPU sitting iddly while the CPU struggles at full steam is a shame.

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Now: The REAL APPLE NEWS you need to know

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Devil

Not to mention of course that the tree part is merely a symbol; it's really about sin, and Eve (the evil alluring whore, no doubt wearing a thong and micro-skirt) tempting Adam (the spotless and ever-virtuous) to commit the unforgiveable: sex for the fun of it.

Or so I'm told by people more knowlegeable in these matters than I am.

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iMessage SPAM floods US mobile networks

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Toy, or "high-quality designer bag"?

Frankly, for most of the genuine (and expensive) designer bags i've seen, same/diff

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Adorkable overshare of words like photobomb in this year's dictionaries

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Bakeoff?

> Pedant's corner, I know, but it's actually...

Nonono, it's the new spelling, all the rage on TwitBook this week, where have you been, like, in a cave on Mars or something? It's going to be in the dict* next month.

Also, in proper English "spell" is an irregular verb. Pedant right back at you!

*and this one the month after

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: A whole raft of ridiculous new words

I spot a textbook a posteriory selective factpicking. There are a few things to consider here:

Shakespeare had quite an aura, and quite a large audience, including most of the English-speaking "intellectual elite" of the time, he was not some 12yo posting to their friends.

Yet all these words did not make it to the dictionnaries until several years after he "invented" them (note that he actually did not invent most of them of course; he's just the first "tier-1" record of their use that we can find nowadays. They might have been common in the suburbs of London for several years before that, for all we know).

And finally if you pore over Shakespeare's writings you'll notice quite a few strange words that are understandable but did not make it to the dictionnaries of today (or only the most extensive ones, which mention such words _just_ because you may encounter them in a Shakespeare play).

Not every meme is worthy of dictionnary inclusion just because "Shakespeare Invented Words".

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Bakeoff?

I'll stick with Baeckeoffe, thank you very much!

It looks like the Collins is trying to turn itself in the Urban Dictionnary. Are they also replacing all their examples with ones questioning the sexual orientation of some Oregon middle-schooler's classmates?

My sister is consistently refereing to blenders as "mix-your-soup" and it's catching up in her circle of friends. To be included in the Collins next year I believe, together with "twitbooking" (TBD; reposting of content cross-websites perhaps?), "connectidate" (TBD, probably meeting people online or sumfin), etc...

Language evolves, I agree, but including in dictionnaries what is nothing more than the "adorkable" portmanteau-of-the-month for a subpopulation of American teenagers is hardly evolution. I bet 2/3 of these words have only ever been used by a few thousands of people at a time and will stop being used at all before the print version of the dictionnary come out.

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Cisco patches three-year-old remote code-execution hole

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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not very informative...

I'm sorry, none of this article makes real sense to me; I'm probably not familiar enough with Cisco's "web, email and content security management appliances" (and I thank Dog everyday for that fact, too. It's the little things in life, you know).

From the BSD bug report:

II. Problem Description

When an encryption key is supplied via the TELNET protocol, its length

is not validated before the key is copied into a fixed-size buffer.

III. Impact

An attacker who can connect to the telnetd daemon can execute arbitrary

code with the privileges of the daemon (which is usually the "root"

superuser).

Now, that I can understand. Pretty simple to patch really, unless I'm missing something. (also, ssh, d'uh)

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UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: systemd

Riddle me this -- why would software need any changes whatsoever for systemd, when systemd is just supposed to affect the bootup process?

Ha, but that's the point. systemd is not just an init system, it aims at becoming the entire system. It has it's own re-implementation of rather a lot of base GNU utils, for the sake of low PID count as I gather. Rather idiotic and dangerous for no good reason if you ask me, especially as the whole clusterfuck doesn't actually work very well -perhaps unsurprisingly.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: alone at last!

But be aware, you will be alone in the future!

Yup, that's totally what happened when OpenOffice was forked to LibreOffice for example...

If there is a systemd-less fork, all the sysadmins will switch to it in a split second. We shall see then how desktop monkeys manage to maintain a huge distro on their own, and who will feel alone. I'm sure we'll miss you and your m4dz sk1775 immensely.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Hopefully this will go somewhere and kill the nonsense that is systemd before it ends linux.

Oh, systemd won't end Linux, it will always need the kernel. It may however end GNU (that's the long-term goal when you listen to Lennard P.)

Actually I'm half-surprised that Stallman hasn't said anything yet...

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: So fork, then

http://www.muylinux.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/funny-systemd.gif

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Gimpd

It works okay for desktop, but you'll see odd things on servers that have service quirks (the very thing systemd is supposed to make easy...)

I've seen intermittent (like, every other boot) problems with laptops too, mostly trackpad and/or WiFi chipset*. So much for the "faster boot" argument when you have to reboot immediatly after every other boot...

*problem gone after a revert to sysvinit, so definitely a systemd issue

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Gimpd

> "http://www.debian.org/ports/kfreebsd-gnu/" AFAIK it's in danger of being dropped.

haven't heard these rumours but it may well be. On the other hand, if adoption grows (perhaps driven by the systemd ruckus), then it won't be dropped... vote with your popularity-contest.deb!

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Gimpd

There are also non-Linux Debian ports, if you like Debian's userland... I'm told the freeBSD one is pretty good, and FreeBSD is not on the systemd team's radar.

http://www.debian.org/ports/kfreebsd-gnu/

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: So fork, then

Spot on Raumkraut.

There's also the little detail that the permission tree in systemd ("the user doesn't own the process, each process owns its children") is making a fragging permission mess very quickly which means that after a while you have to run a whole lot of shit as root, à la Windows pre-RT, or reboot to clean the mess up.

Systemd is a toy, not a proper tool. I say burn it. Burn it with fire.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Go for it

Yup, same here. Go ahead and get rid of that systemd shit. I sure did go back to sysv on all my debian machines, systemd is just... not up to the job on a real machine. I can see how it can be useful on a "reboot-every minute" tablet, but on a proper computer it just doesn't work (on top of slapping all the UNIX principles in the face, repeteadly)

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Really... an iKeyfob? Apple continues war on fanbois' pockets

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Aimed at the Merkin market then

In a place that shall remain unnamed I've seen people drive the whole 30 m that separated their motel from the pizzeria's parking lot.

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Ploppr: The #VultureTRENDING App of the Now

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: "bump to dump"

Sincery hope the icon shows some kind of beverage...

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Securobods RAGE over $600k Kickstarter Tor box components

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Why all the rage? Oh I see.

It's not like you'd need custom-build hardware for a TOR router. I reckon I could build one out of my Fonera in a couple hours, probably on top of a hardened realtime-patched minimal Linux kernel, a minimal set of system utils (busybox?) and a purpose-compiled TOR stack.

I would build it on top of Gnu HURD but it'd probably take a couple years instead of hours ;-)

So, unless they're selling it for its weight of SD cards filled with iTunes-bought songs* because they custom-built it, I don't see the problem. Oh wait.

*https://what-if.xkcd.com/108/

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Life is good in the data centre – UKFast boss reports from hot tub

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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A sysadmin in a hot tub? I think not.

Here's how a sysadmin works:

http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20141013

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BEND IT like YOGA: Newest Lenovo gadgets have built in PROJECTORS

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Who would want an integrated projector?

Actually a mini projector is not going to be much better than this. For anything good you have to cross the kilogram barrier. I should know, I tested everything I could get my mitts on. I finally bought a LED thing, on the light-and-small side of the large projector range. Pretty quiet too, and not overly expensive.

At first I was more interested in a mini projector because, well, neato! But I found even the rather overexpensive ones struggled at more than ~1.5 m, and that's before we even start talking contrast. This embedded one is probably not extra-good but certainly worth having for a quick improvised meeting on the go where the mini projector is going to be equally shitty with the added burden of needing an extra couple cables*, an extra device, and an extra power outlet.

*and hdmi cables are not the sturdiest things around, either. Being carried around will mess them up pretty fast.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Subwoofer?

Yeah, subyapper more like, at this size.

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WOMEN, your 'SUPERPOWER' is ... NOT asking for a RAISE: Satya Nadella

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: @ A Twig

> but it's surely a fine principle?

It certainly is, but that's where the trouble kick in regarding gender equality: for the end of the evening shift, say, starting at half past pissed, you may want to have more bartenders of the burly, hairy-chested type as opposed to the squishy curvy type, for obvious reasons (including the squishy type not wanting to actually get squished)... and you're not paying the same wages... see the problem here?

Of course there's a very valid reason to begin with, but from outside it may look like you're willingly paying women less than men. That's where you have to put in all these compensatory-this and equivalent-that which makes the calculations that much more complicated, as I was saying (although I did not have this particular problem in mind at the time, I was thinking more along the line of out-of-hours work and such).

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: @ ElReg!comments!Pierre

> having two separate pay grades for men and woman

WTF are you talking about?

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Boffin

Re: re: Not as easy-peasy as it may seem at first.

> 2 people, doing the same job, will be on the same pay-scale, at points determined by their respective experience/performance.

Yes, they are on the same payscale. It would be illegal to have separate ones. The point being argued here is, is the "fluffy factor" (experience/performance/etc recognition) evaluated and taken into account the same way. And that's where the icon is NOT sarcastic.

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Intel 'underestimates error bounds by 1.3 QUINTILLION'

ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Ulp!

> I shudder to think what he would have made of the Millennium Dome

indeed!

http://cjoint.com/14oc/DJkl4hLHRQI_millennium.jpg

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: God, keep me from harm and working on FPUs

You're being a bit unfair there. He's just complaining that Intel oversold the precision. He did not seem so upset about the precision itself, but about the fact that if you rely on the doc you'll assume that your result is more accurate than it actually is, and thus rely on it instead of doing things another way.

I bet he's perfectly happy with Intel's response of fixing the doc to fit the code.

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ElReg!comments!Pierre
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Re: Ulp!

> you might miss Mars

If you did not have a way to correct trajectory as you get closer, true. But that would make you more vulnerable to a fly's fart on the launchpad than to this error...

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