* Posts by Steve Davies 3

3420 posts • joined 24 Jun 2009

Excel hell messes up ~20 per cent of genetic science papers

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Devil's advocate

You make some good points. Many of the posts here show frustration with MS for making the tool try to do your job for you when if it just left well alone we'd (or most of us) would be a lot happier.

A case in point is the use of the ' at the start of a value.

Great but... when you use that data after some manipulation in excel as input for another application is when the problems really start.

All many of is need is a way to stop Excel from making any assumptions on the data we are importing/using. Don't drop leading zero's, don't convert numbers to scientific notation (normal people don't understand that anyway) etc etc

If MS were to do that an awful lot of people here and in other forums would go away happy.

It is not too much to ask is it? It is our data after all or has MS laid claims to that now?

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Kindle Paperwhites turn Windows 10 PCs into paperweights: Plugging one in 'triggers a BSOD'

Steve Davies 3
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Re: is there a comprehensive list of cockups?

These are all part of the MS 'Cunning Plan' to make anything that isn't carrying the MS brand or Windows Inside sticker inoperable.

How many printers no longer work with W10? Why don't the H/W makers update their drivers?

Or what incentive was there from Redmond to make them not work?

I really don't know what the real reasons are/were but the continued footgun events that surround W10 makes me think that is something that only Baldrick could dream up.

It never ended well for Baldrick and I see no signs that this will end well for MS.

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Windows Update borks PowerShell – Microsoft won't fix it for a week

Steve Davies 3
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Raising the White Flag

and giving MS the Finger.

I did that for my own personal use back in 2009. I just got fed up with the annual OS re-install and product load you had to go through as your machine craweled to a stop.

Bought myself a MacBook to run Photshop. That MacBook is still running today. Not had to do an OS re-install on it either. Runs with an SSD and thanks to TimeMachine moving from spinning rust to SSD was easy.

MS simply does not listen to users. It goes on its merry was towards self desctuction.

Sadly, I have to use Windows (W7) for work but as that job is comintg to an end in 5 weeks it might be that I can say goodbye to MS once and for all and you know what, I won't regret it one little bit.

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Unlimited mobile data in America – where's the catch? There's always a catch

Steve Davies 3
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How much?

$50 for 2GB???? What on earth are they thinking? Almost as bad a EE with their 500Mb plans.

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Stop lights, sunsets, junctions are tough work for Google's robo-cars

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Roundabouts...

4-Way ALL Stop junctions are a lottery. It seems that he who puts their foot down first wins the game of chicken. It is a wonder that more people aren't killed on them than they are.

Frankly, they are mad but the alternative is a 4-way stop light system.

Sadly, the road planners in the UK have got 'traffic light madness' these days.

Everywhere you go they seem to think that the ONLY solution is to put traffic lights in even when other solutinos have worked well for decades.

Well, that and painting acres of road with white lines this reducing the usable area by up to 50%.

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Google to block web views from using its OAuth

Steve Davies 3
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Re: More for Google

It is what the likes of Google, Facebook and Apple do with that data once they get it.

Oh, and don't forget Microsoft. They don't/won't want to be left out with all that effort they have put into getting it from you with W10.

Do the companies mentioned above either sell the data or use it to sling ads for 3rd party crap at you? Those are the most important things to ask yourself (IMHO)

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Das ist empörend: Microsoft slams umlaut for email depth charge

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Microsoft or Americans?

Having lived and worked in several parts of Germany, the answer is ... it depends where you are if the locals speak English.

In many of the larger cities it is easy to speak english and be understood. A few times in Bavaria, I was asked to speak English because my Hamburg accent was so bad they couldn't understand it.

In places where the British Army had bases a lot of the local speak English because they integrated more into the population. Not as much in areas where there were US bases as they mostly remained on base.

There is no simple solution to the problem.

As for speaking french in France.... Several of my friends (around Annecy, in Brittany and south of Lyon in the Rhone valley), speak almost perfect English but refuse to use it when Americans are around just because they don't even try to speak French. most Brits at least try these days.

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Steve Davies 3
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Re: Please!

A bug in Outlook 2016

Microsoft is a bug factory. That's all we need to know about Redmond. Everything they chuck out is riddled with bugs that are left to us poor (well, we are coughing up their license fees aren't we???) users to discover.

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Your wget is broken and should DIE, dev tells Microsoft

Steve Davies 3
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They are quick to shutter services

when they "embrace" a company (absorb them into the MS-Borg) yet when they clearly make a balls up they say that it will have to go out to RFC because someone might have used their shite in a week?

And because they want to play by the rules....

After a while the RFC will be forgotten and people will accept the MS versions of wget and curl as the defacto ones.

I just get a feeling this is the first attack in their plan to subvert the FOSS movement from the inside.

If that is the taste of MS to come then watch out FOSS.

come on Redmond, just pull the Powershell release from Github until you fix it properly. Otherwise folks, use at your own risk with wearing a full Hazmat suit and a 40ft barge pole.

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Microsoft's kinder, gentler collaboration war: Evernote, you're first

Steve Davies 3
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Millions of records

Knowing how many objects there are in the db is one thing but knowing how many came from Evernote is a very different matter. My guess is that they troll through the metadata (giving them the benefit of the doubt about reading the data itself).

I would not trust MS with one tiny bit of data of mine (the same goes for Google)

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HPE sharpens knife for next salami-slicing staff redundo round

Steve Davies 3
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£300/day contractors

last year those same roles were £400+/day

more money for those exec bonuses

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Steve Davies 3
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Will the last one out

please switch the lights off and shut the doors.

Honestly, how many are there left to sack apart from those with corner offices?

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Former RN flagship HMS Illustrious to be sold for scrap – report

Steve Davies 3
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Re: It's always hard

ditto for the USS Alabama in .... Alabama. A WW2 Sub is moored alongside.

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Paper mountain, hidden Brexit: How'd you say immigration control would work?

Steve Davies 3
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Re: I still have 'friends' saying...

Point your friends at the Exchange rates.

Perhaps they want £1 == $1 == 1 Euro or worse?

I saw £1 = 0.95 Euros last week at one exchange.

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Steve Davies 3
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Re: Simple is best

Agreed. BREXIT may bring about a unified Ireland sooner than even the IRA might have dreamed of.

Then there is the lack of pressure on the UK to have another referrendum until we gave them the right answer (like they did in a few other countries in the past). That leads me to suspect that the EU can't wait to see the back of us.

That leads me to start thinking that we shoud not leave just to piss them nasty europeans off even more.

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Microsoft can't tell North from South on Bing Maps

Steve Davies 3
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Joke

Re: Maybe this explains the Aussie Olympic team's disappointing performance?

nah,

This was the first time in recent history that they haven't had to travel to the Northern Hemisphere for the Olympics. Besides, putting it where it was, the trip to Tokyo for 2020 would be just a short hop for any athlete based in Melbourne (Australia) and not the one in Derbyshire.

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iPhone: Apple's Mac battle with Windows rebooted

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Same tired old (and wrong) "market share" meme

Apple phone business is not doomed, but it will be very difficult for it to get market share from Android, unless they can find somewhere some new highly desired unmatched feature - beyond status symbol ones.

The question is something a bit different (IMHO)

Do apple Actually want a huge amount more market share?

sure they'd make shed loads more $$$ but they'd face Monopoly investigations.

While they are a minotiry they can continue to charge lots more $$$ for their bling and make more profit.

Remember that the margins for every other mobile maker are pale in comparison to Apple's.

Apple needs Android who needs Apple.

Intel needs AMD needs Intel

etc

etc

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Uber and Volvo take on Ford in race to launch self-driving vehicles

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Could this mean . . . .

Don't matter. They'll just follow the lead of Alfa and VW and make the actual lights so small that you can't even see them at night.

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UK IT consultant subject to insane sex ban order mounts legal challenge

Steve Davies 3
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Re: I don't even know where to start...

But...

" his case does qualify for legal aid, but whether or not he fulfils the financial hardship criterion is not known."

If it can be 'proved' that he made himself homeless then he can be denied everything.

Sad but I do think that the Plod are really out to get him by fair means or foul.

I cn only hope that the publicity of the case will make some lawyer who is a human rights expert to take his case pro-bono. No matter if he is guilty as sin, he does deserve a proper defence and proper representation in court.

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Oracle Java copyright war latest: Why Google's luck is about to run out

Steve Davies 3
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Coat

If Oracle win... what then?

With the majority of smartphones in the world running Android, will the owners see an Oracle Victory as an attack on each and everyone of them?

What about those Execs who are about to sign an Oracle Purchase Order? Will they say "nope, not gonna do it".

It will be interesting to see what happens if Oracle prevail.

It might be that they win in court but lose in the court of public opinion.

Could this win actually mean the end of Oracle as we know it?

Is this Larry's grand exit plan?

Mines the one with a front row ticket in the pocket.

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Microsoft promises free terrible coffee every month you use Edge

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Where's the coffee?

While you are correct, the stuff that Starbucks serve up is a huge step up from Gas Station coffee unless you add something like Vanilla to it.

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Oracle campaigns for third Android Java infringement trial

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Steve Davies 3 The never ending Story

I thought NK was the perfect match for the huge ego of Larry E.

You said it, 'egomaniac'.

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Steve Davies 3
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The never ending Story

Oracle's lawyers must have been reading the history of the SCO case.

That one still raises its head out of the slimy grave it was consigned to every so often.

The SCO vs IBM case was started in 2003

Why don't they just give up and use the money to help Larry buy a Country, say north korea.

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Microsoft has open-sourced PowerShell for Linux, Macs. Repeat, Microsoft has open-sourced PowerShell

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Yecch.

could not agree more.

A few years back, MS issued a patch that had a side effect of stopping the MSCS cluster control plugin from working (Server 2008R2). WTF! Thankfully, they actually started to test it after it had been released (SOP then).

A week later we got an updated patch that rectified it. Won't get the 200+ man hours we expended trying to sort it out back though.

Thankfully, the customer learned a valuable lesson and didn't roll out Patch Tuesday releases the next day but now waits for at least a week.

Shame that us mere plebs (who can't legally buy enterprise edition) can't stop W10 patches from being rolled out and crapping all over your system.

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Ad-blocking ‘plateaus’, claims hopeful ad industry

Steve Davies 3
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FAIL

Re: It isn't just the ads

I visited one site in the USA a few months back.

It wanted to load 67, yes sixty seven bits of javascript from other sites.

I found this by firing up a VM and using an OOTB IE 9. Well, I was using my laptop in a Starbucks. The VM is one that I overwrite after use with a clean version.

It took almost 5 minutes to load and I was in the middle of Portland, OR.

I have to wonder if the owners of the site are happy with all that ad revenue and tracking cookies (24 of them) that get deposited on your system. One had an expiry of 01-Jan-3033. WTF?

I wonder how many people just give up and go somewhere else with sites like that? Probably loads so they lose revenue so they add more ads etc etc

The increase of advertising will soon make the internet unusable without adblocking.

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Happy Anniversary: What’s new, what’s missing in Microsoft’s giant mobile update

Steve Davies 3
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Re: I just wish that MS would come out and say.

No more Hardware?

Where does that leave the Surface?

I find it hard to believe that MS will can this flagship device in the near term.

It is not another Kin or Zune. They really have too much riding on it to can it now.

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Steve Davies 3
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never mind the quality, feel the width

Quote

The quality of development on Windows 10 has gone up this year

Really? The recent borking of systems with the updates and the disk thrashing are hardly evidence of a quality operating system in 2016. In 1996? Possibly but not now.

There is indeed a very long way to go with quality.

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£11bn later: Smart meters project delayed again for Crapita tests

Steve Davies 3
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Re: If you have a PV Array then the last thing you want is a smart meter

Strange that mine is running backwards as I type this and yes I'm in the UK.

Apparently there are different types of old style meter and I have a good one. My PV Array was fitted last March.

As for the feed in tarriff... It is reducing quite a bit over the next few years.

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/system/files/docs/2016/07/tariff_tables_july_2016.pdf

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Steve Davies 3
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If you have a PV Array then the last thing you want is a smart meter

With the old style of meter anything you generate is fed back into the grid and your meter runs in reverse.

That means you only pay for what leccy you use in excess of what you generate.

With a smart meter, your generated leccy is bought at a far lower cost than what you consume.

guess who wins then? Not you. The power company gets leccy at a lower cost from you than from any other source.

F**k smart meters.

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Ford announces plans for mass production of self-driving cars by 2021

Steve Davies 3
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And Lawyers everywhere start

rubbing their hands with glee and begin to order a shed load more yellow legal pads.

This will be a field day for class action law suits.

The slightest 'ding' will result in a law suit being filed.

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Intel fabs to churn out 10nm ARM chips for LG smartphones next year

Steve Davies 3
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Re: So will Intel try to leverage this and get ARM to back down on servers?

MS per core licensing will be the holy grail to them then.

Think about a Snapdragon SOC. How many cores does it have? 4 or 6 or what?

Even though some are reserved for Graphics

Then apply a license per core at the same rate as they charge for an X86 per core license. Suddenly that cheap as chips (doh) ARM SOC becomes very, very expensive.

Could this be the huge pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for MS

or

Will it be the final stone that makes businesses stop using MS software for good.

This will get interesting. More popcorn please.

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Some Windows 10 Anniversary Update: SSD freeze

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Huh,

C:/ProgramData gets full of crap so yes you should unhide it and look inside at regular intervals.

VMWare leaves copy of all the files you copy to a VM in this folder tree. Wondered where all your disk space went? Well go and see how big this is.

But naturally Nanny (a.k.a. Microsoft) knows best so fully expect a patch to hide the directory to be along soon. After all, it is their machine not yours isn't it.

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Steve Davies 3
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Re: Where are all the MS apologists?

cue the complainers about 'systemd' and... well everything done in the past 5 years.

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Steve Davies 3
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Business as usual then?

sigh.

What was that song that got played constantly? Oh yes... 'Things can only get better'

With Windows 10, it appears it is more of a case of 'Things can only get worse'

The question is though, will MS learn from their mistakes?

Lets wait and see eh?

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Apple allowed to put up bit barn in the Fields of Athenry

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Once the land has been cleared...

Quote

Other companies are re-using old factory buildings - much more environment friendly.

Not always. What if the old building is riddled with Asbestos. What then eh?

As for destroying the garden of Eden (which is in the Middle East and Saddam and everyone else has had a real go at it) we shall have to wait and see won't we?

Apple has been granted planning permission. This more than likely comes with a list of restrictions longer than your arm. They will be held to account if they don't meet those restrictions. Just like any company in this day and age. If they fail then we will know all about it here and then we can vent our collective anger at more rotten fruit coming out of Cupertino. It will be more than justified.

Lets wait and see eh?

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Google's brand new OS could replace Android

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Fuchsia

Cuttings and Fuschias? Yes.

but will we be able to 'fork' it over.

Mines the one with the rooting powder in the pocket

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Native Skype for Windows Phone walked behind shed, shot heard

Steve Davies 3
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Re: It'll be available on Windows Mobile

I know windows phones are cheap when compared to iPhones and Galaxy S* models but do you really think that someone will go out and replace a perfectly good phone with a Windows 10 abomination just so that they can continue to use a full fat version of the Skype client?

Oh wait...

Yes... people are that stupid.

Perhaps this is the MS Cunning plan to achieve world mobile phone domination?

Once the OSX/MacOS version of Skype stops working I'll be rid of MS for good.

I did say that I'd gotten rid of all MS products but I forgotten that I still used Skype from time to time.

Looks like I'll be looking for an alternative that runs on Linux, MacOs and Windows pretty soon then.

Would Apple dare to step into the breach and release Messenger for Windows? Hmmmm

It is a real shame that MS buys a product and then proceeds to shaft the users like this. Happens pretty well every time they open their wallet. The MS Kiss of death. Does anyone in Redmond ever look at the number of users before and after and ....

Like hell they would. They don't care about the users.

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Bees bring down US stealth fighter

Steve Davies 3
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Facepalm

Brings a new meaning to

'Buzzing' the enemy

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£1m military drone crashed in Wales after crew disabled anti-crash systems – report

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Drones for UK that can't land in the Wet

Nah, it was chopped out to save a few hundred million. After all, the bad guys are all in the desert where it don't rain now does it? Balls. It snows in Iraq and Syria.

Anyway, what idiot decided that a laser altimiter was a good idea. So what happens when the bad guys fire a laser at the drone? What then?

This whole program seems to be a complete TITSUP from start to finish.

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Russia is planning to use airships as part of a $240bn transport project

Steve Davies 3
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Re: Sometimes one really has to wonder about the subheadings around here.

I was thinking more about the cover of Led Zep 1 and how not to do it.

As for Russia, there are vast parts of the country (and in Kazakhstan) that are almost unreachable by wheeled vehicle.

Really heavy lift choppers or indeed Airships are ideal for supplying these wildernesses.

I've visited northern Siberia [1] and some places we visited were only accessible using a Hovercraft or amphibious vehicle but that is only workable for 3-4 months a year. Using an Airship with air temps of -50C (in still air) would be problematic. Many steel alloys are very brittle at these temp. Building them would be an interesting engineering problem. The Russians have plenty of experience building kit that works in these temps. I wouldn't dismiss these plans out of hand.

[1] The biggest problem facing us were the gazillion, gazillion mossies/sq metre that fill the air anywhere near water in summer.

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The curious case of a wearables cynic and his enduring fat bastardry

Steve Davies 3
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Fruity watch wearers

Having seen

1) a woman get mugged for her iDevice. (The thief ran into a couple of builders who floored him. Plod took him away.)

and

2) someone pay in a shop by wafting their Fruity Watch at the NFC terminal

all within 24 hours in London,

I had my doubts about wearables but to be able to pay for things without risking your phone or physical wallet (you know those things you keep folding notes it) seems to me to be a very good solution.

I am sure there are downsides (other than it being Apple tech) that will get pointed out very soon but that is one use that Apple have got very right. Simple to use and seems to work (from my very limited survey).

If I

1) Wore a watch (not done that since about 1980)

and

2) Had a smartphone I might look at some form of wearable device.

Until then my old nokia dumb phone and my Half-Hunter pocket watch will do very nicely thank you.

Now if I could get an Apple watch inside a half hunter case then I'd be more than willing to open my wallet.

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What next for the F-35 after Turkey's threats to turn its back on NATO?

Steve Davies 3
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I'm sure Mr Putin

would offer some SU-35's to his pal Erdogan as a more than ample replacement

What then for the Turkish desire to be part of the EU? Probably accelerated by 5 years.

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Adblock Plus blocks Facebook's ad-blocker buster: It's a block party!

Steve Davies 3
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They (Facebook) have a nerve

To quote a company statement

"We’re disappointed that ad blocking companies are punishing people on Facebook as these new attempts don’t just block ads but also posts from friends and Pages," the company said in a statement.

How is improving the user experience by reducing the number of ads slung at the poor user( sorry product) punishment? It is their shoddy code that blocks post from friends.(as detailed on many other sites)

I am so glad that I've never even visited their website let alone signed my life away to join up.

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Steve Davies 3
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Don't forget 'connected' TV's

once you plug in that RJ45 or enable WiFi your viewing habbits (and probably a lot more) is gone in a flash to the various motherships for distribution anyone who wants to pay for it.

Don't forget to put some tape over that camera on the TV unless you really are a voyeur.

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Steve Davies 3
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Unhappy

Where's the off switch?

I will bet a pint of three that it won't be long before we get devices that won't switch off until the user has viewed the required number of ads that day.

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Cox stiffed for $25m after letting subscribers pirate music online

Steve Davies 3
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Coming soon to Cox users

A new fee that they have to pay called something like

LEgal Protection Insurance

Well, they have to get their users to pay the fine somehow don't they?

Thay aren't going to let this piffling fine affect their profits.

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UK local govt body blasts misleading broadband speed ads

Steve Davies 3
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Really?

And pigs might fly...

As the US Telco market has amply deomostrated all those little extra charges are where they make the money.

only £0.99/month for us to produce your bill and let you read it on the internet

only £0.99/month for the box on the wall there you plug your phone into (does not matter if you paid for it yourself

only £15.99/month for Caller ID

only £5.99/month to let us block all those annoying PPI/MS Support/etc/etc/etc calls.

and so it will go on no matter what OFCOM says.

Unless OFCOM threatens to revoke their license nothing will change and they'll find new ways to gouge us each and every months.

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Reactive? Serverless? Put to bed? What's next for Java. Speak up, Oracle

Steve Davies 3
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What's next for Java?

Death?

{because of the way Oracle has behaved since it got ownership}

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Google Chrome will beat Flash to death with a shovel: Why... won't... you... just... die!

Steve Davies 3
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Why wait until December?

Just Nuke Flash Now!

Someone please tell the likes of the BBC that they need to pull their finger out and drop the need for users to install that bug ridden sorry excuse for a bit of sofware called Flash NOW!

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London's 'automatic' Tube trains suffered 750 computer failures last year

Steve Davies 3
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Re: So what's the message here, then ??

Quote

And if he wants to see a really brave implementation of ETCS and ATO, look at what NR are planning for on the Thameslink core in 2018.

I think the NUR will have more than a few words to say about that given the present problems Sarf of the River. The last southern train from my local station goes at 16:28 this week.

If NR think they can get 24 tph (trains per hour) in each direction in the peaks through the Thameslink core then can I have some of what they are smoking please?

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