* Posts by sandman

448 posts • joined 8 Jul 2009

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That man told me to stuff a ROLE up my USER ENTRY!

sandman

Can be a laugh

I worked for one company that had a very simple-brained HR system. Because my role (Project Manager) was a standard one it gave me a charge-out rate of 2k a day. My boss was grandly titled "Head of Technology", a non-standard role, therefore the system gave him the minimum charge-out rate of 1k a day. Obviously I couldn't help but point out our respective worth ;-)

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Humongous headsets and virtual insanity

sandman

Been there, done that

"Even something as simple as allowing people to become familiar with hazardous environments before they enter them in the flesh".

Back in the 90's I had the "pleasure" of a taking part in a demo IBM ran at Hursley - escaping a fire on an oil rig. With immersive VR and an angry foreman with Scottish accent shouting at you it was pretty damned realistic.

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The insidious danger of the lone wolf control freak sysadmin

sandman

Re: Internal wikis - do they ever live up to expectations?

We must have worked for the same companies ;-)

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Cops turn Download Festival into an ORWELLIAN SPY PARADISE

sandman

Re: What will the police do with the images they collect?

Being pedantic, we in the UK are not citizens, we are subjects (of the Crown) - not far from subjugation eh, and getting closer every year.

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Future Range Rovers will report pot-holes directly to councils

sandman

Poor orphan

We have a street next to our house, part of which is an "orphan road". Essentially it doesn't belong to anyone - not even the council. For quite a few years this little stretch was left unrepaired until NASA could have asked the council if they could use it for Mars Rover trials. Now it's beautifully smooth and used by some drivers to see if they can exceed Mach 1.

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Teaching kids to code is self-defence, not a vocational skill

sandman

Analysis and/or coding

Some good points raised here. Coding is great, but the ability to analyze a real world problem (yes, games included) and work out the steps needed to solve it is equally if not more important. There's little more frustrating for many people than learning something purely abstract. (Says the man who had to learn Latin at school and couldn't understand why at the time).

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Why voice and apps sometimes don't beat an old-fashioned knob

sandman

UI changes

Ah yes, my favourite occupation. Every time (this applies to everywhere I've worked) a new marketing manager/CEO/receptionist/etc comes in, it's ooh, we need to change the website. Even better, it's then - ooh, we need to change our application UI to reflect the new branding. Then of course, one customer will ask for a new feature, to which Sales will say, "Oh, that's not a problem". Cue another change to the UI. Then of course, every release will have new features (whether useful or not) and the UI design will be changed (whether necessary or not).

Of course, now everyone is all cloudy, the changes are pushed out to the unsuspecting users and they'll find their familiar UI has changed literally overnight, whether they want it or not. On the upside, I've got a job for eternity (well, it sure as hell seems like it).

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Tim Worstall: Metals, mining and my heavyweight book

sandman

Damn!

Unfortunately I'm going to miss this as I'll be studying (and singly-handedly trying to ameliorate) the economic plight of Athenian taverna owners on that date ;-)

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Well YES, Silicon Valley VCs do think you're a CRETIN

sandman

It might well work

Common, how long have Ponzi schemes and 419 scams worked for? Despite the fact that the world and its canine companions should be aware of them by now. It's virtually impossible to lose money by promising the greedy yet gullible a glittering unicorn wearing the emperor's shiny new clothes.

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Windows 10 to MELT YOUR BRAIN and TAKE OVER YOUR LIFE

sandman

Lighten up!

OFGS - why not? Windows has never been the same since Minesweeper and Solitaire, etc, stopped being bundled with it. Bring it on I say - that's the dull conference calls sorted. It's either that or read the Reg ;-)

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Look out, law abiding folk: UK’s Counter-Extremism Bill slithers into view

sandman

Re: One party state

Give the people what they want and give it to them good and hard!

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It’s Adobe’s Creative Cloud TITSUP birthday. Ease the pain with its RGB-wrangling rivals

sandman

No new Photoshop for me

I really don't need the full power of Photoshop, but do need a mixture of RAW editing, general photo manipulation and some vector/semi DTP work. So that's a mixture of Elements, Lightroom and Xara. (For those of you who haven't heard of Xara, you might want to look it up, it's a pretty damned good product).

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Self-STOPPING cars are A Good Thing, say motor safety bods

sandman

Re: Transitional period

Try leaving the highway code mandated gap (particularly on the motorway) and someone will inevitably slot into it - often forcing you to brake - grrrr.

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Like a Dell factory but what comes out is a LOT more fun: We visit Aston Martin

sandman

Re: Leather choice

Not exclusive enough - Dodo leather is the only choice ;-)

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Why should I learn by ORAL tradition? Where's the DOCUMENTATION?

sandman

Training?

As someone who has the dubious pleasure of producing some of our software company's training materials I was of course delighted when a "senior" product person said the following. "We don't need to bother with training, our software is so intuitive that anyone can understand it".

Strangely our customers (and internal staff) beg to differ. ;-)

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Unfriended: Odious screen-teens get theirs in this flat horror

sandman

Pah, amateurs

My computers are protected by an Elder Sign (one that eats the brains of passing teenagers).

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UK exam board wants kids to be able to Google answers

sandman

Re: Exams?

Now, I'm precisely the opposite. I'm really, really, good at passing exams. This includes programming in C++ - something that in real life I'm complete rubbish at, being a certified system architect in xxxx's software - something else I'm crap at, etc.

In my opinion, exams are unfair, they suit people with my sort of short-term retention and penalise far better people who just aren't good in exam situations.

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Range Rover Sport: Like a cathedral on wheels, only with comfier pews

sandman

Very popular here...

... in Surrey. This - "“yes, traffic calming is for poor people" - explains why ;-)

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Apple BIGGER than the U.S. ECONOMY? Or Australia? Or ... Luxembourg?

sandman

Interesting - that got me thinking. It'd almost certainly be much worse if Microsoft disappeared, the world is far more reliant on MS than Apple (although obviously many people would prefer it not to be). IBM going would be a blow to many as well. Apple (despite my love of their laptops) are mostly a consumer-orientated company and are really quite unimportant in the serious IT world.

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Apple Watch: Exactly how many vids does it take to teach a fanboi to tell the time?

sandman

With the demise of Google Glass some other badge was required.

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sandman

Re: Informative indeed.....

You're right - the (male) owners will probably be used to raising and lowering their wrist rapidly ;-) However, for most of the population that will be the right wrist, so perhaps instructions on how to do it left-handed are necessary...

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

sandman

Re: Time for a Register checklist?

"10 Did you get this at home as well but not want to "risk it" there?" - Brilliant! :-) Please tell me there aren't people who do that!

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High on bath salts, alleged Norse god attempts tree love

sandman

Re: commit "a sexual act on a tree"

At least its bark is worse than its bite...

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Don't shoot the Messenger: NASA's suicide probe to punch hole in Mercury

sandman

Star Trekkin

We come in peace - shoot to kill!

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Bloke hits armadillo AND mother-in-law with single 9mm round

sandman

Re: re: Manola

Ah the beauty of the differences between US and UK English. "Mine would be pissed but we made her move her trailer years ago." In the UK, "pissed" means very drunk. The sentence makes sense both ways, nobody wants to live next door to an alcoholic mother-in-law. ;-)

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The voters hate Google. Heeeeyyyy... how about a 'Google Tax'?

sandman

Re: politics

As a fairly hard "leftie" I always enjoy Tim's articles, even if I sometimes disagree with his opinions (and he usually states what is a fact and what is an opinion - which is splendid). In this case I think his conclusions are correct.

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A Brit in California moves to the Lone Star State – just swerve the TexMex grub

sandman

Friendly Americans

I've found the vast majority of Americans to be really friendly - and mean it. In the US the comment "you must come and visit" actually means what it says. In the UK it quite often means "I really hope I never see you again" ;-)

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Mummy, what's the point of Evgeny Morozov's tedious columns?

sandman

Happily resorting to dogmatism :-)

I'm going to get into the spirit. Tim can't be a "lackey dog capitalist running pig". As any Maoist knows the correct expression is "A Capitalist running dog* and a lackey of US Imperialism". He's pretty likely to also be a revisionist and a paper tiger.

* possibly of course a bloated one...

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HELP! Windows Phone update 8.1 broke my Lumia

sandman

Well, since the 930 isn't affected...

But I still want to be counted as one of the four. In fact I have an old HTC Windows phone on the desk as well (no sim, and a cracked screen, but use it as a now free HERE Maps/Drive GPS device/music player, etc). So, am I two owners. The beautiful other half owns a 720, so that's three Win Phones in the house - that's theoretically all four of us then. Who owns these mythical 1020s?

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Facebook is MORE IMPORTANT to humanity than PORTUGAL

sandman

"Really? But Google is the internet, surely"?

Oh, that's so last decade, do try and keep up! ;-)

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Buses? PAH. Begone with your filthy peasant-wagons

sandman

Bunch of wheel lovers

Pah, personally I try and walk most places and regard ALL road users as dangerous vermin. (Except when in a car, or on a bike or a bus then all OTHER road users are as above, oh, and pedestrians).

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Google's first stab at control-free ROBOT car rolls off the line

sandman

The technology doesn't matter

Look, it could be run by HAL, powered by a tiny fusion engine and have unicorn leather seats. All this is irrelevant, it looks like it was designed by a three year old with a broken crayon. Even British Leyland never managed anything quite as ugly. Ask yourself, "Would I be seen, even as a week old mouldering corpse, in the non-drivers seat in THAT?"

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Bring back big gov, right? If only the economics, STUPID, could tell us more

sandman

Re: Great article

Agreed - some interesting and thoughtful comments as well. I particularly like the way Tim doesn't hide his ideological slant. I'm not sure such thoughtful behaviour is allowed on the Reg, can we just get back to the usual mindless insults?

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Judge spanks SCO in ancient ownership of Unix lawsuit

sandman

Re: Just Buy The Bankrupt Company

Don't be silly, it'd deprive starving lawyers of money and us of endless entertainment. Think of it as a soap opera (albeit one with a plot copied from Groundhog Day).

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Linux 'GRINCH' vuln is AWFUL. Except, er, maybe it isn't

sandman

Re: Me thinks

It'll be used to operate the commercial fusion powerplants ;-)

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UK air traffic bods deny they 'skimped' on IT investment after server mega-fail

sandman

"Old" works for me

As long as I'm on a plane I sort of like the idea of a tried and tested system controlling the airspace I'm in. New is only good if it offers extra functionality that is absolutely necessary. I'm going to suggest that the actual requirements for an air traffic control system don't change much (assuming there is spare capacity within the system). I'm also going to suggest that there seem to have been very few (if any?) fatal accidents caused by air traffic control problems in the UK (I don't know how many buttock-clenching near-misses have happened).

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How much for a wrist job? A tenner normally, but for this one, over $30k

sandman

Re: Isn't that just a blingy band for the Gold watch?

Ah, you're missing the point of conspicuous consumption. The idea should be that it only fits one specific model of blingy thingy. When a new model comes out you order a new wristband - just because you can. There used to be a shop in Burlington Gardens (still there possibly) that sold this sort of stuff. You could buy black diamond encrusted phone cases that would only fit a single model of phone and much more besides.

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This Christmas, demand the right to a silent night

sandman

Evasion Tactics

I used to work for a company where the senior management were proud to never be off call and never take a real vacation, ever. Unfortunately they expected the entire workforce to behave the same way. My answer to the holiday problem was to take my Blackberry with me and lock it in the nice, metal, hotel safe. When asked on return why I hadn't responded to all the calls/emails/IMs/etc, I'd just say there was no phone coverage in the mountains of Crete/Sardinia/wherever. Being US based, they believed me.

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So this Saudi Prince calls and asks why he can't watch movies ...

sandman

Re: Back to the stone age

I think you'll find that they'll be enjoying a comfortable exile in Alicante, Kensington, Manhattan and all the other nice places they own...

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UK slaps 25 per cent 'Google Tax' on tech multinationals

sandman

Re: In the Google v. EU comments

The East India Company never really made real profits either, they were hived off by the guys in India (who got fabulously wealthy - any comparison to modern CEOs would be mendacious). The return for shareholders was created by asking the Indian rulers for donations, with menaces. When the company finally went just about bust the Govt stepped in and took it (and India) over.

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Orion: To Mars, the Moon and beyond... but first, a TEST FLIGHT through Van Allen belt

sandman

Nah, they did the moon missions before anyone had invented health and safety. In those days radiation just gave you a healthy glow, C'mon, they even made breakfast cereals that made you glow in the dark!

(For youunglings who haven't the faintest idea what I'm talking about - see this ad... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WzBxYi7IKzc ).

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Amazon DROPS next day delivery amid Cyber Monday MADNESS

sandman

OK so far...

We've been experiencing better than normal delivery times just using the standard free delivery. Two days has been the fastest, four the slowest.

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Google Chrome on Windows 'completely unusable', gripe users

sandman

Re: How Widespread?

Yep - just had the page rendering problem start to occur on the same setup - bloody, hindering awkward, We've had to put up a help notice on our eLearning courses telling the users to resize the page if they're using Chrome on a Mac.

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Why did it take antivirus giants YEARS to drill into super-scary Regin? Symantec responds...

sandman

Re: "Alternatively they could revamp the malware to the point where it's undetectable."

Splendid - that's what I call proper paranoia :-)

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Sacre vache! Netflix ne parle pas le Frenchy ... zat is against ze LAW

sandman

Seen this before

I've worked in the past for an international (well, sort of) company where the first level of help on the website was in the local languages, then switched to English when they would have required to pay for a technical translator ;-)

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Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked

sandman
Joke

Winphone

Nobody's hacked our App yet ;-)

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Our system handles £130bn and it's BUST. Want the job of fixing it? Apply to UK.gov

sandman

Cheapskates

£500-600 a day for the contract from hell?

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GIANT sunspot returns, bigger and belchier than ever before

sandman

We're all doomed!

It's the end of the world as we know it, but I feel fine ;-)

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The last PC replacement cycle is about to start turning

sandman

Re: Businesses don't work like that

When you get to the stage of adding a keyboard and mouse to a tablet you might as well call it a laptop. I've also had the dubious pleasure of working in server/terminal environments and it wasn't a happy one. They do have their uses but there are times when you want your processing power - particularly graphics processing power to be local.

The primary advantage of a laptop is that you can carry a machine that you can use to both create and consume content.

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Poll: Yes, yes, texting while driving is bad but *ping* OH! Hey, GRAB THE WHEEL, will ya?

sandman

Personal Observation - non-statistical

I had the interesting experience of watching a non-accident happen, although was very surprised about the "non" bit. The scene is a busy junction and a driver is approaching the main road while happily talking on and looking at their phone. Coming along the main road is another driver on the phone. About to cross the junction is a pedestrian texting while listening to music on their phone. Cue blaring horns, screeches of brakes, one pedestrian paralysed with fear in the middle of the road and much swearing.

I'd like to say this was a one-off, but it's more a daily occurrence around where I live...

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