* Posts by Trixr

147 posts • joined 30 Jun 2009

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Chap mines Bitcoin with PUNCH CARDS and ancient mainframe

Trixr

::eyeroll::

I am not a millennial and yet I am still a lazy arse. Kudos to this guy for taking his hobby to the extreme, but let's not pretend that laziness (or lack of interest in certain arcane achievements - I happen to think this one is cool... climbing Mt Everest these days, meh) is a feature of any one generation.

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Border Force bureaucrats become super-spooks

Trixr

I can tell you that most of the "bureaucrats" who got smashed into Border Farce with no choice during the departmental merge have little to no interest in metadata shenanigans, nor acting as keystone kops on the sly.

Well, except for those who enjoy wearing navy blue boiler suits (sorry, whatever they call their "tactical uniform" these days), tooling around in fast boats and training their German Shepherds. Those guys love it. They, however, are not the "bureaucrats". There are a few bureaucrats who would love to be a boiler suit guy - they're undoubtedly all over this like a rash. They are the minority.

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Microsoft discontinues Media Center with Windows 10

Trixr

That's interesting. The Win 7 Ultimate edition lappie I got (with media centre) had no such cute set of instructions. Since I didn't and don't have a TV, I wasn't that interested in the functionality, but I only learned in this article that it could take a TV tuner.

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It's official: David Brents are the weakest link in phishing attacks

Trixr

Re: Timing

No, the simplest solution is to use decent RBLs (like Spamhaus) and a proper anti-spam solution at the gateway, and let in as little as possible.

It's all very well fulminating against HTML in email - although personally, having more complex text look something like printed material rather than your grandma's typewriter suits me (yes, MS's code is shite) - but if you receive a hyperlink in plain text email in clients like Outlook, it "helpfully" linkifies it for you anyway.

To be fair, a link with some kind of GUID or misdirection in it will show up properly, but you know the idiots will click on those anyway.

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NBN Co to trial faster fixed wireless services

Trixr

Four kms from central Canberra (such as it is), I can't even get wired NBN. Maybe I should sign up for this offering instead. Since anything is an improvement on the 4 Mbps peak I get on my "ADSL2" line.

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Microsoft to open first flagship Store beyond North America

Trixr

Re: Keep on hating......

Get back to us when Apple have a server offering that's not worth pointing and laughing at.

And a means of managing *enterprise* PCs, not the dozen or so in the Marketing dept and the execs' iPads. Sorry, but it's tricky to do serious number-crunching (with the usual tools used by businesses) on cute little tablets and phones.

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HTC One M9 Android smartphone: Like a M8 with a squinty eye

Trixr

Since my M8 is effectively an expensive brick right now, I'm going to avoid HTC until they come up with an entirely revamped hardware spec. Yes, it worked beautifully for months ... until the dreaded permanent "disabling airplane mode" appeared - SIM is no longer being detected. Swapped SIMs, reset to factory, flashed alternate ROMs. Still stuffed.

If you look through the forums, it's a common problem without a reliable solution.

Also, I have to agree that the speakers make the phone way bigger to handle than it needs to be, and yet somehow I often missed hearing the phone ringing while it was in my bag. Sure, they sound "good for a phone", but really, still shite. If you listen to music through headphones predominately and don't much use speakerphone (what is it with the morons these days walking around with it permanently on speakerphone and bellowing into it like a walkie-talkie?), then that feature isn't really much chop.

Otherwise, yes, a nice phone without too much cruft in the OS other than the stupid "blinkfeed". Has that gone in the M9?

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Clinton defence of personal email server fails to placate critics

Trixr

Re: Hindsight is 20/20

Someone working at the State Dept while Hilary was Secretary WAS fired under the regulations in force at the time for using his private email and failing to adhere to record-keeping standards.

As for the wonk quoted in the article about "busy professionals", oddly enough, Hilary was a *public servant* at the time. While public service is a quaint old-fashioned notion to our corporate masters, part of the role of being a public servant is to carry out their business in a transparent (supposedly) manner that can be readily audited for the public good.

Frankly, since Hilary doesn't seem to understand this basic principle, she's not suitable for govt (and of course, nor are nearly all the Repubs and a big chunk of the Democrats in the Senate or House).

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Trixr

I don't know. Her "one rule for me and one for everyone else" doesn't distinguish her that much from any of the other examples you cite.

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'Utterly unusable' MS Word dumped by SciFi author Charles Stross

Trixr

Re: Content and Style

Totally agreed.

If you wanted the amount of author-supplied styling that typically goes into a printed book (bold and itals), then perhaps Markdown (whatever editor you prefer) and some kind of SVN/Git/whatever change-tracking software can do the job.

For corporate styling, there are a bunch of enterprisey applications out there that will take content and style it appropriately. These will be "enterprise content management" systems or even "component content management" systems - Word might be in the mix using plugins, but it ain't the main styling tool.

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Ski MOUNT DOOM or take top coffee to the beach? Your choice

Trixr

Re: Just don't ask about the cheese

Hm, there are a few different cheeses out there, but I agree that compared to any country in Europe, there's aways to go.

https://www.kapiticollection.co.nz/#/cheese

http://www.whitestonecheese.com/

Do a bit of a google for "artisan cheese" in NZ.

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Trixr

Re: Auckland is a separate world in its own from the rest of NZ

"Orientals"? What is this, an Agatha Christie novel?

As for the Polynesians, they're mostly descendants of families who have been there since the 60s or 70s. I think the second generation qualifies as "locals".

As for South and West Auckland being universally "grotty", perhaps you should get out more. My family live in South Auckland. I saw more crime when I lived in Ponsonby (admittedly while the area was mid-gentrification).

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Trixr

Wow, have you ever lived overseas yourself?

NZ is a great primary producer, and the selection is much better than it was in the 70s, but some of the range of stuff is still lacking. I would hope they're purchasing the local butter - but what if they want organic or cultured butter? Good luck getting that NZ. You can't get clotted cream in NZ, which is mind boggling. And food prices are not that cheap, probably because the good stuff is shipped off, and the local transport costs are high.

You're bagging out the UK tertiary education system in favour of NZ's? Just wow. So you've never worked with someone was qualified at some dodgy former tech, have you?

As for the bloody All Blacks, seriously, speak for yourself. They don't exemplify anything to me - other than the occasional drunken idiocies and dickwits doing party political broadcasts on Election Day. I have no interest and I was born and bred by a rugby player (possibly the reason for the lack of interest). Of course, the Poms are just as boring about whatever footie team they support.

As for work/life balance, given the utterly shite pay in NZ and ridiculous house prices - Auckland is in the top ten unaffordable cities again - you need to get something to compensate. In London, people work and commute horrendous hours. But at least pay in the IT-related sectors isn't too bad.

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Trixr

Mmm, the appalling insulation standard, wooden buildings, and lack of double-glazing means that it can get pretty chilly in the middle of winter. Especially in an older house. Let's not mention "leaky houses".

And are you really dissing the beer? Sure, Lion and DB suck, but there are untold numbers of craft brewers putting out very nice drops these days. Certainly better than the selection in Oz now.

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NSW Govt spends half a million dollars on XP support

Trixr

Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

They certainly aren't the only govvie-type agency in the same boat. Looks like we'll be shelling out till 2015.

As for "custom apps", no not really. No Lotus, in-house apps that could be replatformed (given sufficient money and devs - still cheaper than XP support), and a couple of obsolete 3rd party apps that could have been replaced with other 3rd party apps years ago. With better functionality.

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

Trixr

Re: Bias?

To be fair, economics is a social science (although many economists with their "levers" and "supply and demand" theories are in denial).

But comparing it to hard sciences is indeed ludicrous.

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Turnbull: Coding skills 'will be almost as important as literacy and numeracy'

Trixr

I should have said, any so-called "Western" country. Obviously there are up-and-coming countries and regions where investing in coders makes sense. But even so, the same points about education apply.

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Trixr

Not this old chestnut again. Like there are going to be any coding shops onshore in the next decade, except for maybe games developers, and the few businesses creating software (niche products, often).

Outside the US, I'd be surprised if any country cracks a few thousand employed in such businesses. Yes, a few enterprises have in-house coders, but that's dying a slow death (and the less custom code written in VB4 that's maintained in-house, the more I'll be happy).

No, you teach the kids logic and problem-solving. Yes, simple programs can be used as *examples* of boolean logic flow, but assuming that learning to code automatically teaches logic is exactly backwards.

Once you've got kids grounded in the basics of logic and problem-solving (and yes, not just in mathematics either, where this stuff is mostly taught these days), then the ones who have an aptitude can move on to bigger and better things. Like kids with an aptitude for maths getting fast-tracked into calculus or physics early.

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Zuckerberg bombshell: Man married to Chinese woman speaks Chinese in China

Trixr
Facepalm

My thought entirely.

I also theorised that grandma was begroggled because Zuck was addressing her in Mandarin and she only speaks Hokkien (perhaps).

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Six of the best gaming keyboard and mouse combos

Trixr

Yup, I'm still running mine on an older driver version. I signed up with bullsh*t details, but found that the new driver was pants at any time, with the amount of calling home that it did.

So I won't be buying a Razor again. I don't find the tracking that good on the admittedly non-optimal surface I have, and the middle button is way too stiff. Also, since I have small lady hands, it's too big to be comfortable.

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Vulture South wants FORTY of you to go BACK TO SCHOOL

Trixr

Screw the ACS, seriously. Who appointed them the gatekeepers of IT qualifications in this country?

Bunch of old farts who like the letters "MACS" after their name. And attending useless "seminars".

And what gets right up my nose is that anyone with some bullsh!t uni qualification can enter the ACS at a higher membership level right off the bat than someone like me with 15 years of real-world experience.

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'World’s dumbest' suspect collared in Facebook sting

Trixr

Re: He must like jail.

Frankly, the vast majority of crims who do burglaries and these kinds of crimes (fraud, theft from employer), are pretty bloody thick. That's (often) why they're crims rather than gainfully employed.

I worked doing IT for the plod at one point, and the ridiculous stupidity that the low-level crooks came up with was mind-boggling. My favourite was when a call came in about the 2 gents all in black with balaclavas who were spotted carrying a ladder into a suburban back yard... at 2 o'clock in the afternoon. Lovely sunny day it was, too.

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London commuter hell will soon include 'one card to rule them all'

Trixr

Re: Oh dear...

As someone else has observed, if you don't have an Oyster card, you also get "fleeced" in London. I was fortunate that I'd lived there for several years previous to my last visit, because I went straight to the Heathrow tube station and got myself a 1 week travelcard/Oyster and saved myself a bomb just on the trip to the West End (not to mention travelling around the remaining 4 days I was there).

The assumption is - and it is in every country of the world where I've been on public transport - that if you are a local you'll pay for a multi-trip ticket of some description for your commuting, which is effectively subsidised by the local council. Locals pay "full price" as well if they can't get off their chumps to get a multi-trip ticket and/or only travel by public transport very rarely.

In other words, why is any of this a surprise? It's not about "fleecing tourists" per se.

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Help. Mailing blacklists...

Trixr

Re: Happens to us as well.

Are you using TLS on your email? And instead of allowing academics (yes, I know what they're like) to send SMTP (or even TLS) email via random devices on random networks, this is an excuse to install some kind of web interface to your mail and insist they use that only.

If your institution is getting its mail dropped/delayed regularly because of the open slather approach, then you've got a pretty good business case for insisting that email either gets submitted via the web interface or managed devices only.

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Trixr

I thoroughly agree with the recommendation to use TLS. No client machine should be able to route SMTP straight to the interwebs.

I'm looking at you, Comcast, and the only slightly-improved botnet you "inadvertently" host.

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Trixr

Re: Help. Mailing blacklists...

Dude, where on earth does it say he uses Exchange? In fact, he specifically references Qmail.

I don't know about throttling policies in Qmail, but it's trivial in Postfix. Which makes this post about as useful as the one I'm replying to here.

I agree with the other suggestions of trying to change your IP and browsing through the RBL lists to see if anyone's got you clobbered on one of those as well.

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Users folder vanished after OS X 10.9.3 update? Here's a fix

Trixr

Re: I find Apple hardware extremelly good...

I've used Grub to dual boot Ubuntu/Windows for years. And twice an update has managed to nuke my MBR. Which, yes, Windows requires after Grub has handed over booting to Windows.

It might be "friendlier", but it sure as hell ain't rock solid. It's all very well to say that some preference you set 100 years ago works in one trivial instance, but something important like Grub should not nuke your boot order preference whenever it feels like it.

It also drives me nuts how I have to re-enable my touchpad every time I log into Mint. Sure, I have a little script doing it at start-up now, but I should not have had to have created one if it is supposed to remember my preferences so well. (And yes, my /home is a separate partition, so don't give me the n00b guff).

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Go ahead and un-install .Net, but you'll CRIPPLE Windows Server 2012

Trixr

Re: Yeah no kidding...

It is usable sans-GUI - server core. Whether it's usable without Powershell/.Net, that's another thing. I can see how it might be in theory, if you enjoy walking into the server room every time you need to make a change to the box, or you have an iLO/Drac card in the box.

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Systems meltdown plunges US immigration courts into pen-and-paper stone age

Trixr

Re: Is the *idea* of "outsourcing" the best scam MBA types ever thought up?

Forget using an MBA for such an analysis - MBAs don't *analyse* anything other than their pay packets.

You'd want an economist specialising in managerial or business economics - a branch of "microeconomics". I don't have much respect for economists at the macro level who labour under the illusion that economics is anything other than a form of anthropology or sociology, but the micro side can be quite useful.

To summarise what they investigate, from Wikipedia:

Almost any business decision can be analyzed with managerial economics techniques, but it is most commonly applied to:

- Risk analysis - various models are used to quantify risk and asymmetric information and to employ them in decision rules to manage risk.

- Production analysis - microeconomic techniques are used to analyze production efficiency, optimum factor allocation, costs, economies of scale and to estimate the firm's cost function.

- Pricing analysis - microeconomic techniques are used to analyze various pricing decisions including transfer pricing, joint product pricing, price discrimination, price elasticity estimations, and choosing the optimum pricing method.

- Capital budgeting - Investment theory is used to examine a firm's capital purchasing decisions.

Production analysis would be the area to investigate here, and maybe capital budgeting.

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Trixr

Re: Pen and paper stone age ?

I do. But then I was in the print industry before I was in IT. And the print industry pre-Photoshop.

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Commonwealth Bank in comedy Heartbleed blog FAIL

Trixr

NSS instantly springs to mind, with mod_nss. CyaSSL, PolarSSL (not for Apache, runs on Hiawatha).

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That's it, we're all really OLD: Google's Gmail is 10 ALREADY

Trixr

Re: Want to make it better?

Do you mean message tags (labels)? I think those are the bee's knees.

Folders are useless because you can only put a message in one folder. Tags allow you to give an email multiple categories if required, while still acting like folders in terms of viewing. You can filter messages using the labels as they're delivered to the inbox, and choose which will alert you to new messages (and which don't nag you).

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Helpdesk/Service Desk Recommendations

Trixr
Stop

Re: Mediawiki - Semantic Mediawiki (SMW)

Oh no no no no no. A classic example of "if you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail".

And delving into ITIL marlarkey when you want to get a simple incident management system up is really overkill. Sure, very useful in a larger environment, but then again, a decent incident management tool will slot in if you decide to go the ITIL route. ITIL didn't invent the concept of incident reporting - it just rebadged it and integrated into the other functions.

As for me, I vote for the Manage Engine or GPLI offerings.

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Improbable: YOU gave model Lily Cole £200k for her Impossible.com whimsy-site

Trixr

What do you expect when you outsource social services?

So now the govt is slowly getting itself out of the business of providing actual social services - let's not get into the libertarian debate that SS isn't the business of govts (it is in the UK and other social democracies) - and outsourcing to private charities, this kind of thing is going to happen more and more frequently.

As much as people like to bitch about bureaucracy and red tape (sure, there can be way too much of the latter), the point of all these ministries and whatnot is to account - transparently - for public spending. You outsource it, you instantly lose any visibility or accountability.

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Brace for extra patches, Oracle tells Australian users

Trixr

ERP blarney

Blame the software vendors - if their products aren't flexible enough to accommodate a simple reporting change, then that's where the problem lies.

And shoehorning in "govt requirements" keeping Aussie orgs on an upgrade cycle? Like no business has wanted to change its reporting or implement a function that the software won't support without a patch. The only difference is that such a universal requirement *forces* the vendor to actually make the change.

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Reality check: Java 8 finally catches a multi-core break

Trixr

Re: Just a question: "utilize"?

Sorry, "administrate" is simply WRONG. Administrators *administer* things, IT system or not.

Anyone who uses it looks ignorant as hell, frankly.

As to "utilise", yup, 9 times out of 10, it's just management-wank-speak. I don't actually think I've seen it used accurately in an IT brief.

"Utilise" can also mean that you use something for a purpose it's not specifically designed for - you can use a screwdriver to turn a screw, or you can utilise a kitchen knife. Same concept as the "making useful" meaning described above.

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'Amazon has destroyed the unicorn factory' ... How clouds are making sysadmins extinct

Trixr

Re: Misleading

You get an upvote for "administering" your systems, not "administrating" them.

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Mozilla takes Windows 8-friendly Firefox out back ... two shots heard

Trixr

Re: no surprise here

So TURN IT OFF. Other than for RT devices, the MS implementation for Secure Boot specifies that there must be a mechanism to disable it (as well as customise it with your own keys, if desired).

It takes about 2 mins in the Win 8 GUI to find the setting and disable it.

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John Lewis unzips mega Oracle ERP package

Trixr

Re: 2018?

Have yet to see ONE instance where an ERP system can do a significant amount of what is required "out of the box". They may well exist, but not in any organisation I've worked for.

Because yes, in that instance, it would make sense. Implement your ERP to manage core processes, then incrementally bring in all those zillions of peripheral systems are used for one measly obscure function.

Personally, I still think a well-defined suite of nicely interlocking parts is usually easier to implement, even in the long run. You evaluate your processes and then implement a "best of breed" solution for each part, one by one, with an eye on which parts need to talk to each other. No-one's ever managed to explain to me why CRM and HR systems have to be tightly-integrated, for example (not that they are in SAP anyway). Then put in a nice simple data interchange process for the bits that do need to talk to each other.

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Another climate change myth DEBUNKED by proper climate scientists

Trixr

Re: We DID have an Ice Age

Dude, that is because ALL the ice is currently floating in your glass of water.

I haven't actually looked at the real science behind the rising sea levels theory - which seems pretty well-established - but simple logic and observation tells us that a lot of ice is sitting locked up in glaciers on LAND, or covering entire land masses like Greenland. So when all (most, some?) of THAT melts and enters the ocean, it seems to me it'd be just like going to the freezer and dumping another handful of ice in your glass.

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Apple, Symantec, other tech heavies challenge anti-gay legislation

Trixr

Re: Guess I'll be the bad guy

And if you're the only business supplying that item in that location? There's enough trouble with religious bigot pharmacists refusing to supply "morning after" contraceptives in so-called more "evolved" locations (Australia, NZ, most recently).

Sure, you may be able to obtain the item elsewhere, if it's not time-critical like the morning-after pill. But why should anyone - colour, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, whatever - be econonomically and time-penalised compared to their neighbour?

Yeah, I don't like serving people with WWJD and religious trinkets dangling all over themselves, because I know what they nearly all think about my "lifestyle". But the social contract is that we deal/trade with each other until such time as someone goes out of their way to disadvantage us.

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Microsoft shunts top exec Julie Larson-Green sideways to make way for Stephen Elop

Trixr

Re: So it's her fault

So if you loathe it so much, why not get LibreOffice? At least that has more recent features than Office 2000, reads its formats, and does cool extra stuff like outputting PDFs natively.

If you've got things like comments and track-changes embedded in your docs, I suppose that's not a good solution, but as an Office 2000 replacement, LibreOffice seems fine on basic principles.

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Hear that, Sigourney? Common names 'may not constitute personal data'

Trixr

Re: Paranoia?

I had this argument with bank when they insisted I start using my (previously never used) first name on my bank account when I made the mistake of showing them my passport once for ID rather than my driver's licence. Pointing out to them I'd had my account for over 20 years in my preferred name (my second legal name) made no difference. Saying that all my tax records were in my preferred name was just as successful.

It doesn't matter that the law of the land says that you can call yourself Mickey Mouse if you like, without the intention to defraud. A bank can have whatever *policy* they choose in terms of what name they insist you use on your account. The bank's policy had "changed after 9/11 to stop money laundering" (what relevance that had to NZ escaped me).

So I closed my account that that bank, walked down the road to another bank and opened an account there using just my driver's licence as ID.

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Don't go away, IBM and SAP – Larry's not finished with you yet

Trixr

Who's using SAP cloud?

That's a serious question - no-one I know of in this town (in Oz) is.

And if you are, what for? Anything other than HR?

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New Zealand

Trixr

I'm not sure if I should be here...

...since I'm currently working in Oz.

Ah well, good to keep an eye on what's going on at home, so I avoid the "wrong" body shops/employers when I get back.

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IT executive at JP Morgan dies in fall from bank's London HQ

Trixr
Facepalm

Re: did he damage the roof of the building

You really have no idea, do you?

# 5 - clinical depression, organic cause (i.e. brain chemistry)

# 6 - clinical depression, due to stress, bullying, etc etc

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Trixr

Re: now that's how you 'take a fall'

What are you expressing yourself "in opposition to"? This isn't a stupid debate on the merits of Samba as a replacement for a Windows domain controller - this is about some poor b@stard that probably took his own life.

If you think that's funny, you've got a f#cked-up sense of humor. If you think it's "fake bullshit" that people are expressing sympathies, you're just f#cked up.

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Elderly Bletchley Park volunteer sacked for showing Colossus exhibit to visitors

Trixr

Re: Sad, sad, sad.

Oh shut up. This anti-social history bandwagon you're apparently on has absolutely nothing to do with this moron acting like a complete c*ck.

Actually, the people story is part of the story of the technology. The technology should not be made subordinate to the people story, no, but how many books/articles have you read about the development of transistors and the IC that don't mention Shockley, Kilby, Noyce et al?

So yeah, not everyone who worked with the technology was a straight white man. Get over it and focus on the real issue here - yes, the potential "dumbing down" of the exhibits, but in this instance it's primarily about management who don't have a clue about what visitors are there for.

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'Climate change' event dishes up sous vide supercomputers

Trixr

Re: But but...

Read the caption. That's a pic of test heatwave *forecast* system that the BOM is developing. That's not the actual map of the heatwave.

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Kiwi inventor's court win rains on Apple's parade

Trixr

Re: A victory for common sense and the little man....

For now....

Just wait until our lovely govt (and Labour was no better) passes the TPP. It's just bend over and spread 'em for US corporations after that.

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