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* Posts by AndyS

270 posts • joined 23 Jun 2009

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NSA man says agency can track you through POWER LINES

AndyS
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Re: 50Hz hum randomiser

"...just turn the incoming mains off..."

So how do I do that in my hotel/office/serviced appartment?

Why not *just* set up an anechoic, faraday caged chamber and record straight to wax cylinder with a porcupine quill?

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AndyS
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Re: 50Hz hum randomiser

Surely a notch-filter, to remove everything from 20Hz to 100Hz, would do the job nicely?

No hardware required, no exotic software, it can probably be compelted with open source software (eg Audacity) in a matter of minutes, and would completely strip the recording of any tell-tale signals.

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Google BLOCKS access to Goldman client-leak email

AndyS
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That's if Google didn't automatically put it in the spam folder already. Along with the follow-up email asking the user to delete it.

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Brazilian baddies bank Boleto billions

AndyS
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Brazilian baddies?

How many is that?

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Lords try shoehorning law against REVENGE SMUT into justice bill

AndyS
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We need more laws!

I hear nearly one in seven murders are committed on a Tuesday, and yet there's no law against murdering people on a Tuesday! Does nobody care?!

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Amazon sues former employee who took Google cloud job

AndyS
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Can't see the gray area here

If the contract specified a blanket ban for a period the courts have deemed fair, and he broke that, then he is in breach of a contract he agreed to.

On the other hand if the contract specified activities he is not allowed to take part in, and he has agreed with Google not to do these things (and Amazon can't show he is doing them), then all seems good.

I guess it's too much to ask to figure these things out like adults without resorting to the courts.

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'I don't want to go on the cart' ... OpenSSL revived with survival roadmap

AndyS
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Re: positively surprising

Bronek, I've gathered from what I've read in various places that (on top of other propblems) the code is in a mess, and this must be true since they've just admitted it. It sounds like you've got some personal experience - have you delved into it? If so, what did you find?

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PayPal says sorry: Fat fingers froze fundraiser for anti-spy ProtonMail

AndyS
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"Another example of why you mustn't tie up significant sums of money with Paypal."

Fair enough.

"And another reason to pay with Bitcoin."

Oh don't be silly.

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AndyS
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Re: Mmmh, its definitely a cock-up when it becomes world-wide news ....

If I set up a shop and accept payment by paypal, you don't need a paypal account to pay; you can just use your credit card, through the paypal platform. I'm willing to bet he doesn't have a paypal account, so this is what's happening.

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Android SMS worm punts dodgy downloads... from your MATES

AndyS
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Is this really a worm?

I thought things like viruses, worms, trojans etc all managed to either spread themselves directly, or by sneaking inside other bits of software.

This looks more like the "delete system32", or "sudo rm -Rf /" line of attack.

This relies on a user:

1. Enabling installation from untrusted sources (isn't this normally only done by fairly advanced users, with a clue?)

2. Following an extremely suspicious link, in badly worded English, with nonsensical content

3. Downloading an app from the linked site

4. Installing the app

And at the end of all that, it installs an (easily removable, and harmless) app.

Hardly self-spreading, or even particularly worrying, is it?

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French Senate passes anti-Amazon amendment

AndyS
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Re: ok.. who sets the base reference for prices?

Most books have an RRP printed on the back, which is presumably set by the publisher. This presumably uses a fixed-ish ratio to wholesale price. This is certainly the price Amazon use to mark themselves against. Adjusting it would either mean lowering the wholesale price, or lowering the profit available to all book sellers. Neither is as easy as Amazon adjusting a number on their website.

This is obviously quite different from the "75% off!!!" that you see on strawberries in Tescos right through the summer (because they cost 4 times as much when they're out of season).

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Google Glass gets 2GB of RAM. Think about this. Two gigs of RAM

AndyS
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Voice commands

Is the only way to activate and interface with these things by voice command? In which case, I can't see how they will ever displace a phone, as they will be effectively useless in:

Quiet offices

Restaurants

Trains

Buses

Any quiet public spaces

Theatres

Presentations

Churches/Mosques etc

Lifts

Toilets

Anywhere it is not socially acceptable to randomly start talking, without making people around you feel very uncomfortable, I can't see how these will work.

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Measure for measure: We visit the most applied-physicist-rich building in the UK

AndyS
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Re: I suspect

How much Boffinry though? Come on Lester, we expect the exact answer to the nearest deci-Pyke.

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Cisco: You think the internet is clogged with video now? Just wait until 2018

AndyS
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Re: Don't worry

Actually I'm confused by the stat of 5 million years per month.

That means there will be a total of 60 million years per year in 2018, or 60 million unique streams at any one time.

This doesn't sound very much, considering the number of people accessing video this way - I'd have thought 10 times that would be perfectly believable.

Reg, is there something amiss here?

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Spain clamps down on drones

AndyS
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Reminds me of Ian Banks

In his book "The Bridge," laws only exist to allow things. Anything not specifically allowed in law is, obviously, illegal.

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Google's self-driving car breakthrough: Stop sign no longer a problem

AndyS
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Re: Quaint already

Landlines have been leapfrogged in many developing countries because the cost of infrastructure is too high, so it never got put in. From your suggestions, automated road systems are actually the equivalent of landlines and visual processing is the equivalent of wireless.

Since initially in every location in the world, automated vehicles will need to operate along side conventional ones, there will be no immediate need to upgrade the road system once the automated ones can cope with the existing systems.

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AndyS
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Re: Motorcycle blues

"If I have to supervise the car I may as well control it.

You'll not be allowed to supervise the car while asleep, or drunk (though people will), and you won't be allowed to have it return to base without you, which for me eliminates all of its potential uses."

Yup, because technology never improves and laws never evolve.

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AndyS
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Re: I don't think I could trust a self-driving car

Yup, it'll never happen.

Oh, wait, wasn't that a video of it happening?

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Selfies are so 2013. Get ready for DRONIES – the next hipster-cam-gasm

AndyS
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Re: Naming suggestion

Sounds like a lovely bit of the world you live in. Afghanistan? Chad? Somalia? Texas?

I think these things are aimed mostly at the first world though.

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Want to see at night? Here comes the infrared CONTACT LENS

AndyS
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So...

A proof of concept has been developed which has a sensor thinner than a contact lens.

Cue sensationalist headlines.

Just out of interest, where does the battery live?

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Microsoft frisked blogger's Hotmail inbox, IM chat to hunt Windows 8 leaker, court told

AndyS
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I'm struggling. Can you give me a TL:DR?

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Monkey steals iPod touch, loses interest in minutes

AndyS
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Re: Everyone knows...

> Everyone knows that monkey only like banana's, it's no surprise he turned his little nose up at an apple...

Which monkey? Banana's what?

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Malaysia Airlines mystery: Click here for the TRUTH

AndyS
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Re: It's obvious!

I thought Xenu flew DC10s?

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Proper boffins make your company succeed, even if you're not very technical

AndyS
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Re: Ah, but...

Actually I disagree. I am, I suppose, squarely the sort of techie the article is on about - PhD in mechanical engineering, and working for a large vehicle manufacturer in Northern Ireland.

I'm no Obama when it comes to communication, however, when our customers (large fleet operators) or suppliers visit, they much prefer a presentation from an engineer, working on engineering solutions to engineering problems, then a polished, high-tech, all-signing all-dancing presentation by someone in a suit, who doesn't actually work at the sharp end of development. Even if I say "um" and "like" too much.

I think the article is spot on. Stick intelligent, educated people into traditional industries, and they'll get to know everyone relevant in their sector, they'll attend seminars and meetings, they'll spot opportunities and they'll attempt to solve problems in larger, more integrated ways than simply "get that guy to drill that hole there."

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20 Freescale staff on vanished Malaysia Airlines flight MH370

AndyS
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Re: Very sad indeed...

"The odds of dying per mile are

by car, 1 in 100,000"

Going by your numbers, the average trip in a car is 16 metres, and the average driver dies after about 10 years on the road.

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NASA's orbiting space-broadband probe LADEE beams back Moon snaps

AndyS
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Re: Maybe just maybe (@ Boltar)

Four points off the top of my head, every one of which shows your theory not to be plausible:

1. There is drag, just less of it. But for a microscopic dust particle, it would be enough to bring it back down eventually. Even if that 'eventually' is years (very unlikely), there wouldn't be enough dust suspended like this to cause a visible haze. There would also be a hell of a lot of collisions between bits of dust, since there would be no uniform orbit direction, and the 'orbitting' dust would cause one hell of a constant storm for anyone on the surface.

2. Mountains. If this theory was true, there would be no dust below the levels of the highest peaks. This would be very easy to show.

3. Luck. Certainly impacts can throw stuff out of the lunar gravity well, but how many bits of dust would land exactly in the orbit level which aligns to the speed they have? Basically, none. So the orbits would all decay, and the dust would clear.

4. If this did happen (which it doesn't), there would also be rocks of all shapes and sizes doing the same. There aren't.

The point is that just because there isn't consensus about what exactly is happening, there are some things which are clearly not happening. A lack of an understanding of the physics is not the same as a lack of the physics.

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Intel Labs 'geeks' flash Edison kit to El Reg: We do it for the BIRDS

AndyS
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Re: The paper notebook computer sounds intriguing.

The applications listed all sound interesting, but can anyone with more foresight than me explain why it needs to be a pluggable form factor? I'd have thought maybe you'd want your bird-feeder and notebook both working at the same time. Isn't part of the idea that things like this will become so cheap that we can have lots of them, each doing one specific task?

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Cisco coughs up to patent troll, smacks down IP laws

AndyS
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Re: $13,000,000.00

Honest question - is the loser not ordered to pay costs in US civil cases?

Because to me, it would seem absurd to not order the loser to pay costs.

In the UK, the level of costs to be paid is determined by the judge, and is split according to what's deemed reasonable, and where the fault lies (not always entirely with the losing party), which seems like a pretty sensible way of handling things.

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Syrian Electronic Army: We hijacked FACEBOOK ... honest, guv

AndyS
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I'm struggling to see the point of this

Dropping barrel bombs on Aleppo neighbourhoods may be dispicable, but at least there is a military purpose (you know, once you've killed everyone, there won't be any rebels left. Much like the WW2 bomber command tactics). Attending peace conferences while continuing to drop barrel bombs? Again, I can see the point - it might just convince some people that you aren't heartless murdering bastards, or at least wish you didn't have to be.

But hacking facebook? What could that actually achieve? How would it benefit the butcher and his henchemen holed up in Damascus even one iota?

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Amazon mints a BILLION BUCKS from its cannibal cloud

AndyS
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Re: because of dumb shits like this

I'm struggling to see why that automatically counts as clueless. They're a computing company, selling computing services for customers with computing needs - of course a large chunk of their costs are going to be for computing.

It's as if you just pointed at First group, and said "They spend 25% of their revenue on diesel! Clueless." Yeah. They run buses & trains. They need a lot of the stuff.

I'm not saying you're wrong, but a company spending a lot on one thing, even if it's a thing you don't personally use much of, doesn't make them automatically clueless.

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Ditch IE7 and we'll give you a FREE COMPUTER, says incautious US firm

AndyS
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Re: No Brainer

Refusing to serve your site to someone using a specific browser that you haven't tested for?

Why yes, that seems like a sensible way to behave.

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Snowden speaks: NSA spies create 'databases of ruin' on innocent folks

AndyS
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Re: The NSA is just a symptom ot a (corrupt) Corporatist obese and evil government

So what you're saying is... you need more guns? So, how's that working out for the USA so far?

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Light, fast ... and pricey: Toshiba's Portégé Z30 – now THIS is an Ultrabook

AndyS
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Re: Bit surprised about the weight

I have a Portage R500, bought for a similar price in 2007. It has an optical drive, similar resolution of screen, and weighs under 1 kg. Now 6 1/2 years old, and comprehensively abused for every miserable year of its existence, (including 20,000 miles through Africa, recording images and data while shoved under the passenger seat of a hilux) it's still running well. I'm actually very impressed with it.

The only down side is that, to get the weight to 997g, they made it of the cheapest plastic they could find. For the last 3 years it's been held together by araldite and duck tape. As the abuse continues, the quantity of duck tape slowly increases.

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Chinese Jade RABBIT SIGHTED ON MOON by NASA probe

AndyS
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Re: Well done China.

You mean other than the fact that they weren't there in the 'before' shot?

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AndyS
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Re: @fink

Are you serious? Those are boulders, so when the light source is to the left, the shadows are to the right. Just like the lander and rover. The other shadows are from craters, so the shadow falls on the side of the crater nearer the light source.

Simple language: Sticky up thing has shadow away from light. Dippy down thing has shadow towards light.

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iOS motion control iRing here at last ... but it's NOT made by Apple

AndyS
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Re: Hmm

I suppose the advantages of it not being a ring are that one size fits all, and it's very easy to put on, take off, and pass around for others to use.

I guess it would be easy to drop too, but if that's a real problem it would be pretty trivial to create a version that is, actually, a ring. Or for an owner to mod one themselves.

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Virgin Media spanked by ad watchdog over 'in your neighbourhood' fibs

AndyS
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Re: Some people have too much time on their hands.

3) Comment about it on a website, slagging those who chose option 2

Since, as you say, you've never even had one of these leaflets, your ratio of time spent to time wasted by Virgin is now infinitely higher than the two people who chose to contact the ASA.

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Amazon, Hollywood, Samsung: PLEASE get excited about 4K telly

AndyS
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3D

No doubt once this is out, there will be 3D 4K (maybe it's there already?). Then there will need to be a new generation of media formats to replace blu-ray, as it will only be able to hold 25% of a film. So on top of your £5,000 telly, you'll need a £1,000 player, and a fibre-to-the-house data connection. You'll need to wear annoying, bulky glasses (only 2 people can watch at once, unless you want to spend £150 more per person). And of course you'll need to to re-buy all your existing films again at £45 each (remastered yet again, so they'll have to be much more expensive).

So remind me again, what's the real benefit to the consumer? Where's the problem needing solved?

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Panasonic will go Firefox OS for TVs

AndyS
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Re: Why cant I buy

Feeling a bit paranoid? (that's maybe fair after the LG phone-home reports mind you)

There is no reason you can't use a 60" TV as a 60" monitor. That's what HDMI is for. Plug in the raspberry pi (or solution of your choice), ignore all the built-in stuff.

Let's face it, the 'smart' bit in a TV probably only adds a few quid to the cost of an already extremely expensive bit of kit, so the manufacturers will always do it if it's a cheap way to convince a large segment of the market that their TV is worth having. It doesn't mean you have to use it.

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Analogue radio will CONTINUE in Blighty as Minister of Fun dodges D-Day death sentence

AndyS
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Re: Vested interest

Shamelessly hijacking the top comment to kindly ask El Reg to make available the results of the "how much boost does it give an article to have a random thumbnail of girls in bikinis beside it" experiment.

Go on, we all like a good graph.

I saw an example of the same once where someone uploaded a youtube video explaining how to get more hits, but a shot of a hot girl as the very middle frame in the video. He uploaded it twice, once with and once without. The number of hits on both versions made the point nicely.

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Yahoo! boss! Mayer! sez! soz! for! lengthy! mail! outage!

AndyS
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99.9% uptime?

Not this year. 4 days down in a year is closer to 98.9%. Or, if we pick our period (like they are obviously doing), then 43% up time last week.

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Facebook-owned Instagram morphs into messaging service to please admen

AndyS
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Re: Ads, Ads and yet more [redacted] ads

Line breaks are essential

To the flow of a poem

Without them it's mental

Trying to find your way home.

I've rearranged your attempt a bit

Sort of polished the chrome

To give it more of a hit.

Like a hip-hop rhyme

It's more of a chore

But bro, you gotta take your time

Else you're gonna hit the floor.

------

Your scansion, sadly, sucks. It's no defence

to play the humour card. When writing verse

both form and rhythm must align to sense.

Though rhyme and scansion may invite a curse

it should be from the author. I would deem a

failed attempt at scansion rather worse than blank verse.

Writing in a formal schema

at least can help at focussing the brain

(my favoured form, like this, is terza rima)

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Fisher-Price in hot seat: iPad bouncy chair lets APPLE BABYSIT tots – parents

AndyS
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Re: What is the issue?

Are you serious? OK, let's pick apart your post:

1. Your children are 3 and 5. This is aimed at infants, well under 1.

2. At the age this is aimed at, infants haven't yet learned to interact with the real world. An ipad is NOT interactive in the same sense as a mobile, beads on a string, etc. There is nothing physical about interaction with it, which is what babies need to learn.

3. This is clearly aimed at the "shove them in a chair and leave them" style of parenting. Also, ANY screen time for infants is counter-productive to development, so this should NOT form part of any selection of activities for an infant.

4. Granny doesn't need the baby strapped into a seat with the ipad inches from his face. Granny needs to see you cuddling the baby. She's got more sense than to think something like this would be a good idea.

I'm also a parent of two children, but mine are 6 weeks and 20 months old. If anyone gave me something like this for them, the angle grinder would make very short work of the ipad arm.

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EC antitrust cops raid offices of Philips, Samsung, others

AndyS
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Re: Price fixing?

I think the problem is more like this:

I can manufacture a McGuffin for £19.93. My three main competitors can manufacture them for £19.94, £19.95 and £19.96.

My McGuffins are fitted to all new Ford cars. My competitors have cornered GM, Toyota and Peugeot/Citroen. And we're all broadly happy with the market share we've got.

So we all decide to charge £160.

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Hear that? It's the sound of BadBIOS wannabe chatting over air gaps

AndyS
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Re: Not that easy to stop

But an attack of this sort wouldn't be aimed at the average user - hence all the talk of military, power stations etc in the article. It would be aimed at highly secured, air-gapped systems.

The administrators of those systems would have no trouble at all disabling the microphone/speakers, so I'm not sure why the obvious conclusion isn't just to remove them. Are they likely to be regularly used in these sorts of environments?

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MPs back call to boycott low-taxed tat from Amazon over Xmas

AndyS
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Re: HollyHopDrive, Just a geek etc

Moan moan moan, life's so hard in my comfortable first world country with free health care, education, social care, state pensions, security, policing, safety nets etc. I wish I was a bit richer (but still had all that free stuff).

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Sysadmin job ad: 'If you don’t mind really bad work-life balance, this is for you'

AndyS
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Re: ..I don't need to apply..

The best job advert I have ever heard of, which undoubtedly trumps this article, was for Shackleton's expedition to the South Pole in the early 1900s:

"Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages. Bitter cold. Long months of complete darkness. Constant danger. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in case of success."

The story goes that he was inundated with thousands of responses, similar I suppose to the talk of one-way manned missions to Mars in recent days.

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Who wants a Xeon-powered, 12-core, RAID 10 … LAPTOP?

AndyS
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Maybe not even, I didn't read notice a mention of a touch-screen in the review.

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From Dept of REALLY? Sueball lobbed at Apple over crap iOS Maps app

AndyS
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Re: So in the UK

I was with you right up to your last paragraph, when you went off on a mind-bending feminist fantasy-spree.

Have you read the register much? It doesn't tend to be very kind to a lot of people. Many of them are men, too. Get over it.

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World's first selfie found on Wayback Machine

AndyS
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Re: Evolution

I like the way he developed his particular duck-face too:

1. Hit face with ground

2. Get stitches

If every duck-face had that history, it would be a trend I could get behind.

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