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* Posts by Tom_

413 posts • joined 6 Jul 2009

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Nominet bins Optical Express' appeal against 'It ruined my life' website

Tom_
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Trying to change the business...

Wouldn't a better way to change how the business is regulated be to keep the sites up, rather than accepting undisclosed payments to take them offline?

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'Bank couriers' who stole money from OAP cancer sufferer jailed

Tom_
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Best common sense tip?

Change the bloody phone system to stop lines remaining connected when the call recipient hangs up!

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Homeopathic remedies contaminated with REAL medicine get recalled

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Suppositories

Learning that people use homeopathic suppositories has amused me more than anything else today.

That's just brilliant.

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First pics: Comet-chaser Rosetta hurtles towards icy prey, camera in hand

Tom_
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Re: Moving at 800 m/s

There isn't really any such thing as absolute speed though, is there? I mean, the ISS is travelling around the galactic centre at a lot more than 32,000km/h, for example.

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Molyneux: Working at Microsoft is 'like taking antidepressants'

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The best bit is he's actually working on Godus 2, the sequel to the copy of Populous...

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Xenon: Bitmap Brothers' (mega)blast from the past

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Sector... One

Xenon 2 was absolutely outstanding both graphically and in terms of audio, but Xenon really did have the more interesting gameplay.

When I was about 14, me and a friend would play Xenon in co-op mode... one person did the space bar to swap between air and ground and the other did everything else. We played it so much that we could clock the game without dying.

Those were the days.

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Google slams Play Store password window shut after sueball hits

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Re: The App Store Con

No, where it went wrong was in providing a time period where purchases can be made without re-entering the password and making that be the default setting for devices.

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Wackadoo DIYers scissor-kick beatboxer

Tom_
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"toilet attendant"

Why do they need to have these two words as a single entry? I don't understand the need when, presumably, they also have each word as an individual entry.

All the other stuff is just meh, whatever. Who cares if cur's in the dictionary or not. It's clearly part of the language either way.

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UK's CASH POINTS to MISS Windows XP withdrawal date

Tom_
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Re: WTF is a USB "encrypted slot"??

Maybe it's an upside down one.

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Tom_
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Re: "realised the capital cost of paying for the existing ATMs"

I think you're missing the point:

"The only reason we even put them in is the convenience of our clients - so that they can do banking after hours...."

No, it's so you actually have any customers.

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My work-from-home setup's better than the office. It's GLORIOUS

Tom_
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Re: ITs going backwards

"Working within a department that deals with govt. data means we need a secure means of transferring data between systems"

I know this one! It's called a train seat, right?

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Tom_
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The worst excuse I've been given for keeping us on low spec PCs is "We don't want you developing on better PCs than our average customers have because you won't realise how badly your code performs in the real world."

Oddly, we don't ship the debug build of our product, although we often have to run it when debugging.

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Dark matter killed the dinosaurs, boffins suggest

Tom_
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Re: Milankovitch and the Galactic Year

"the collision that formed the solar system"

What the blazers?

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Tesla wants $1.6bn to help fund $5bn TOP SECRET Gigafactory

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'G-WIZ like' object doing 40,000 MPH CRASHES on the MOON

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Re: Wow

The explosion that happens behind the progress bar.

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Rise of the Machines: Robot challenges top German player at ping-pong

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Re: Man and machine in perfect dis-harmony

I did a degree in AI in the 90s and my professor shared a cute story with us about Marvin Minski going to view his colleagues table tennis playing robot. The claim is that when Minski walked into the lab, the robot immediately started doing it's best to smack him on his shiny, bald noggin.

I have no idea if there's any truth in it, but it still makes me happy.

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Tom_
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Re: Some tricks up his sleeve?!

I'd show up in a polkadot shirt.

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Vertical take-off and laughing: Space Harrier

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Re: "It’s hard to comprehend...

It's even harder to overstate it.

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Google, Apple pop a cap in that Flappy Birds crapp app flapp

Tom_
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Nervous

I hope that they'll look more closely than just at the name. Otherwise when I come to release my 1920s themed, point and click adventure following a young woman as she explores the fashion and dances of the speakeasies it may turn out I've wasted a whole morning and most of an afternoon developing Flapper Bird. :(

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Gmail falls offline, rest of Google struggles on: NO! Not error code 93!

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Google's Big Dog retaliatory strike imminent.

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Developers: Behold the bug NOBODY can fix

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Surely he can patch it.

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UK.gov recruiting 400 crack CompSci experts to go into teaching

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Re: By Gove! I think he's got it!

It's worse than that. He's come in and kicked all this off now, but in a couple of years he'll either be in opposition or he'll have been moved into health or sport or something else he's shit at instead.

While schools are trying to train up teachers to be good at teaching programming to five year olds, he'll be off being an arse biscuit somewhere else and he won't have to deal with any of the difficulties everyone in education is having with the whole scheme.

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Our robot overlords won't be evil cyborgs: Prepare for whisker-equipped ROBO-KITTIES

Tom_
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Re: Ten pound note of pressure

But did they mean a £10 note or a 10lb note?

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Good news: 'password' is no longer the #1 sesame opener, now it's '123456'

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Yeah, but so would he once you had his notes.

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Tom_
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No, sorry, your favourite type of plague is now 'pneumonic'.

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Tom_
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Re: Why does anyone expect people to remember?

That's great until you find yourself on holiday without your PC and your laptop and phone get stolen.

"That's ok, I'll go to an internet cafe!" you think. So in you go, pay for an hour and sit at a computer.

... "Shit."

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Google grabs slice of interwebs for EVERYONE (who speaks Japanese)

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Re: Wow....

Oh come on, mate. Ofn't you ever written anything that makes you look dim?

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MANIC MINERS: Ten Bitcoin generating machines

Tom_
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It seems that it is more profitable for them to plug them in and use them themselves, but only for a period of time. After that period, they start to be too slow to be profitable, so then they're sitting there with piles of stock that's making them no money and for which there is no demand.

That means they need to sell stock on while it's still considered fast enough that other people can see profit in buying it for mining. The people making them must find the right time where they can give up any future profits from mining and balance that by selling the device.

Anyone buying from them must therefore automatically be looking at a thinner profit margin than the people making them, but then I guess that's just how life works.

At least when everyone was doing this with graphics cards, there was still some inherent value in the kit once it was no longer profitable to mine with it. Well, I hope so anyway. I wouldn't mind picking up a bargain graphics card just for gaming.

Question: Is there any use at all for these ASICs once they're retire from mining?

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Tom_
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Chip Manufacturers

It sounds like some of the hardware manufacturers are quietly or openly developing and using their own chips to mine for themselves and only selling the hardware on when it becomes more profitable to sell it than to use it. I suppose there's a small window where there's still demand for the hardware - that being where the public can run it profitably before it comes obsolete.

My question is whether this will ever be attractive to the big chip development companies, like Intel. Being as they have the facilities to fabricate large quantities of chips quickly, is there any point in them making themselves a large number fo mining chips, even if it's still only a small percentage of their chip output. Another way of phrasing it may be to ask if the economies of scale available to them mean there's be profit in using some of their capacity purely to speculate on bitcoin mining at the cost of reduced output of chips that they normally sell.

The whole thing's fascinating, but it feels like we're well past the stage where it's worth getting involved in buying hardware - as a hobbyist anyway. Just buying some kit that's a month too old could completely kill any chance of profit, by the sound of it.

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Think your brilliant app idea will earn some big bucks? HAH. You fool

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Discoverability is the problem

As pointed out in the article, now there are over a million apps in these stores, it's really hard for anyone to find anything worth bothering with.

I think the best solution would be for the store managers to drop apps that are unpopular after a while. No downloads in a month? Delist the app. It sounds harsh, but it would be easy for any developer who cared to make sure they downloaded the app now and then to keep it listed and you'd probably find many don't bother to do that for apps that aren't performing at all anyway.

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ANYONE on Google+ can now email you, with or without your Gmail addy

Tom_
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Better Approach

Maybe peopel would react better to this kind of thing if Google didn't turn it on by default, but instead made it available and then tried to explain to people why they might want to turn it on.

That or they'd realise they couldn't persuade anyone to turn it on because it's so obviously going to be far more trouble than it's worth.

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Spock-style gadget can SMELL my PEE! Weird gizmos of CES 2014

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"Smartwatches and wearable devices have proved the key theme of the show, with lots of folk jumping on the bandwagon to try and get a piece of the action early, now well-known birds like Fitbit and Pebble have been enjoying."

"Smartwatches and wearable devices have proved the key theme of the show, with lots of folk jumping on the bandwagon to try and get a piece of the action [that] early, now well-known birds like Fitbit and Pebble have been enjoying."

Better? :)

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Sony seeks mojo reboot with 147-inch 'honey-you-can't-afford-me' 4K home projector

Tom_
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Re: 147 inch eh?

Even knowing that, it was more fun to say 148.

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Tom_
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Re: 147 inch eh?

Yeah, but you have to position it EXACTLY the right distance from the wall.

Otherwise you risk ending up with a 148, which is clearly cheating.

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Circuits so flexible they'd wrap around your hair

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Re: Simple sounding and clever

That's fine. Just use a mains adaptor.

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Time travellers outsmart the NSA

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If I worked at Twitter

I'd be quite tempted to insert one or two of those messages into the historical database.

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No anon pr0n for you: BT's network-level 'smut' filters will catch proxy servers too

Tom_
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Slippery Slope

No, more like a cliff.

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Security guru Bruce Schneier to leave employer BT

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Cryptogram

Looking forward to reading all about it in this month's Cryptogram.

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Is Google prepping an ARMY of WALKING ROBOTS?

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Re: Nope they have to

Maybe they've already successfully created an artificial intelligence and it's now making the business level purchasing decisions. The few remainging staff are all like, "We should buy more post it notes and hard drives." But then they get an email from "management" saying, "Nope, we're buying robotics companies in this phase."

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eBay head honcho: Amazon drone delivery plan is 'FANTASY'

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Re: To spend 10½ hours a day picking items off the shelves...

Funny how sentences make less sense when you only look at half of them, eh?

"To spend 10½ hours a day picking items off the shelves is to contemplate the darkest recesses of our consumerist desires," In the context of working in an Amazon warehouse she'd have been picking all sorts of random stuff off the shelves. She was remarking on how the Amazon picker gets an insight into all the dark corners of the customers' minds through their purchasing decisions. She's not just moaning about working long hours in a boring job.

Still, it's probably easier to just read the first half of her sentence, sneer at her choice of a career in journalism and then sneer at her while projecting your own ideas onto her.

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How the UK's national memory lives in a ROBOT in Kew

Tom_
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We should be archiving it on the moon, so it survives any Earth based disaster that's small enough to leave the moon's surface unharmed. eg. climate change, many levels of asteroid impact, supervolcano, gamma ray burst, etc. Even if all life on Earth is wiped out, the sum of our knowledge will remain available for any life that comes along later, either from elsewhere or starting from scratch locally.

I propose a system that starts with extremely large scale symbols, visible to the naked eye from the surface of the Earth - enough to inspire curiosity, so as to encourage further investigation. Then smaller symbols, still large enough to be seen with primitive optics, which explain some basic science. As concepts get more advanced, the symbols can be smaller, as they'll have already explained how to develop better telescopes. Smaller symbols can be duplicated over more of the moon's surface to allow for redundancy. At the stage where rocketry, orbital mechanics, etc. are sufficiently explained, everything else can be stored in a bunch of duplicated vaults - readily available for direct physical examination.

Large symbols can be written with nuclear weapons and smaller ones with orbital lasers and rovers.

/bosh

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Blighty could put a (WO)MAN on MARS by 2040, says sci minister

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Re: Voting

It's fantastic what we could do if we just ignored physics, reality and all that other nonsense. :)

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Cheap 3D printer works with steel

Tom_
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Not even close to useful yet.

I don't need to print a washer, shower curtain ring, action figure , circuit board or anything else so trivial.

I'll buy my first 3D printer when I can print Kelly LeBrock.

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Sensors and sensibility: Quirky’s Spotter multi-purpose monitor module

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Was briefly enthused...

At first, I thought I could buy one of these and stick it on my home network and then be able to use my PC or Raspberry Pi to graph the sensor data over time.

Nope.

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IT MELTDOWN ruins Cyber Monday for RBS, Natwest customers

Tom_
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Did they just roll back to the previous day's data?

It's shocking that people have seen money go missing. I mean, being unable to use your credit card or withdraw cash is obviously bad, but you can get around that by keeping credit cards from more than one provider. Seeing your wages vanish is another thing entirely.

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Sceptic-bait E-Cat COLD FUSION generator goes on sale for $US1.5m

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Re: Don't stand too close

I suppose that is true if you ignore solar PV, hydro-electric power plants, wind turbines, diesel generators, etc...

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DEATH-PROOF your old XP netbook: 5 OSes to bring it back to life

Tom_
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What about keeping XP?

I've got an NC10 that I still use for programming during my commute. It came with XP and I run Visual Studio on it, which sounds absolutely horrific, but works well enough. Building is slow, but just writing code is fine, so I can upload it and do my builds/debugging on my desktop when I'm at home.

So what about sticking with XP? As I understand it, the idea is that Microsoft will stop supporting it, so there will be no further security patches and that's the main concern. Is there more to it than that? Can the netbook be kept secure enough to continue working on it and include some minor web access in that or is it really curtains?

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SILENCE of the OWLS may mean real-life 'Whisper Mode' for Black Helicopters

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In other words...

Owls are quiet. If we can copy their methods then our machines can be quiet too.

Well, shit.

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The latest stupid yoof craze: Taking selfies - while DRIVING

Tom_
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My passenger took the photo, your honour.

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