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* Posts by Tom 38

2317 posts • joined 21 Jul 2009

Tesla, Nissan, BMW mull all-for-plug, plug-for-all electrocar charger plan

Tom 38
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Re: The Other Side of the Coin

If half of all vehicles switch to electric, you'll have a surplus of petroleum.

Really? I'd imagine that what would actually have is a massive reduction in extraction rates in order to maintain current petrol prices.

Before half of all vehicles switch to electric, we need a battery technology that works at scale and is cheap enough to be used in half of all vehicles. Li-ion is already the most popular kind of battery ever made, and electric cars use the most popular kind of li-ion cell - the Tesla S has 7,000 of them. There simply isn't the scale for li-ion, despite it being one of the most mass produced items on the planet.

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Tom 38
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Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport,

Without any hint of irony?

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WORLD CUP SHOCK: England declared winner in 2-1 defeat to Italy

Tom 38
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Re: No matter how hard you try

I meant England deserved not to win, they only deserved the draw with such negative play. 360 in 100 overs means the opposition will play a bit more than 390 in 90 overs.

New Members Bar: The "New" refers to the bar not the members (who very much have not been described as "new" for several decades.

The pavilion at Lords is a weird stratified place. Members is where you go when you want to get a good view of the action, its on the top tier next to the big pavilion stand, but don't want to suffer the stuffiness of the Long Room or the crush that is the Bowler's Bar. When I worked there, it was also next to the media rooms, so you had Trueman, Blofeld, Johnners, Frindall et al having lunch up there, but sadly they are relocated to the other side of the ground now.

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Tom 38
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Re: So england won

Mind you, it got me wondering if they would ever transmit multiple sound channels, one of the crowd, one of the commentators etc. (or a choice of commentators) then you could switch the wankers off and just watch the game but keep the crowd response. That would be nice.

Lots of sports on sky these days gets transmitted in 5.1, with the commentary on the centre channel, crowd sounds on the other 4 - I just unplug the centre.

Shame this doesn't usually work with BBC or ITV.

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Tom 38
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Re: No matter how hard you try

Crikey Spartacus, the Lords Hamper is a bit outside of my range. I've only been twice as a punter, ticket £90, beer £5, burger+chips £12. I think I enjoyed it more when I worked there as a barman (New Members Bar, top left of pavilion, good view of the wicket from the bar).

PS: SL didn't deserve the draw, England did - they should have declared the night before, silly sentimentality to give Ballance the chance for a ton. They would have had 10 overs at them with the new ball that night, another 10 overs fresh the next morning with a newish ball, and 20 overs at the end of the day with a new ball instead of 10. Über-conservative.

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Tom 38
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Re: No matter how hard you try

It's natural state is dullness, livened up by brief moments of skill/luck. It's like cricket, but without the pimms and cucumber sandwiches.

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Virgin Media boss AND ex-Murdoch man: BSkyB broadband is 'lousy'

Tom 38
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Re: I can confirm...

When I first got their service I was receiving only 0.5 MB/s.

Do you mean 0.5MB/s, ie 4 Mbit or did you mean 0.5 Mbit?

Isn't this just an "ADSL can be shitty" scenario though? I expect there are people with VM ADSL that get a shitty 0.5Mbit too.

Braindead support is braindead though. Be had excellent support lines, even the Bulgarians were super knowledgable and could fix any time I had issues.

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TIME TRAVELLERS needed to secure Windows 7

Tom 38
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Headmaster

Re: Combo Upate

Downvote for using "bing" as a verb meaning "search", yet still capitalizing it as a proper noun.

You might heart the fuck out of microsoft, but keep your neologisms (google¹ it) to yourself.

¹ Intentional.

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Join me, Reg readers, and help me UPGRADE our CHILDREN

Tom 38
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Re: You are fired!

If you're soldering things, that sounds like Electrical Engineering.

Most schools have a clear divide between Computer Science and Electrical Engineering. Some students might do classes from both departments, but they are separate departments with different goals.

Computer science is almost an academic discipline, it actually relies very little on physical computers. Electrical and/or software engineering are disciplines that use computer science, they are not computer science. Computer science is "physics" to software engineering's "civil engineering". One tells you why bridges stay up, the other tells you how to build bridges that stay up.

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Blame WWI, not Bin Laden, for NSA's post-9/11 intel suck

Tom 38
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Re: Tom 38 "Socialists"? Try Bolshevists.

I couldn't read any of the "facts" because you were so excited to get all these facts out there that you failed to make it at all readable.

You can tell when Tom (and the rest of the sheeple) can't argue the facts presented when they start bleating about paragraphs and name-calling.

Ah, I see, I'm the one doing the name calling? I do apologize, presumably the sheeple behind me will also apologize.

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Tom 38
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Re: "Socialists"? Try Bolshevists.

You can tell when Matt is really frothy, he forgets about paragraphs.

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DINOSAUR BLOOD: JUST RIGHT, as Goldilocks might say, if drinking it

Tom 38
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Re: Say what???

No - birds are dinosaurs, theropods to be precise. We just call them birds because we don't dig them up out of the ground.

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Spaceplane design nipper Ariadne gets a promotion

Tom 38
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Re: Sooooo........

Bring back Cash n Carrion!

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S is for SMACKDOWN: Samsung takes Galaxy Tab slab war fruit-side

Tom 38
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Mushroom

2560 x 1600 resolution

How come I can buy a tablet with 2560 x 1600 resolution for $399, but if I want to buy just a screen with the same resolution, no attached tablet, it costs a metric fuckton of monies?

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Stephen Fry MADNESS: 'New domain names GENERATE NEW IP NUMBERS'

Tom 38
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Or a wildcard cert, one IP per domain wildcard.

I've never tried asking for subjectAltName with multiple wildcard domains, wonder if that would work, one public IP per server farm.

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Tom 38
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Fry has a fascination with technology and likes to use it but admits he himself has no clue how most of it works. It is the press that has painted him as some sort of ambassador for technology

Sure, no problem. It's the shameless cashing in on said reputation, which he does not go any way to ever dispelling. When he gets called up by the Beeb, "Stephen old chap, come on This Morning, show us the new iphone, plug your book" he doesn't say "Ah well actually probably a tech journalist would be better than me, but I'll come on and talk about the book?"

Scratch all that, I've just realised that each appearance by S.Fry as a tech evangelist means one less time I have to see Rory Cellan-Jones, who knows roughly the same about tech as Fry but can play the bullshit trombone a little better.

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Psst. We've got 400Gb/s Ethernet working - but don't tell anyone

Tom 38
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Headmaster

Re: Mobile Fantasy

Technically, if everything went mobile, wouldn't that include the back-haul? ;)

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Sealed with an XSS: I gave TweetDeck a heart attack, says teen comp sci boff Firo

Tom 38
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Re: BBC

I don't think this breaks their charter, as they offer all the "popular" social networks. If they just had facebook maybe you would have a point, but they always offer facebook, twitter, delicious, digg, reddit, g+, linkedin and stumbleupon. No MySpace though, or "other social networks are available".

Similarly, they don't have to give all political parties time for party political broadcasts, just the popular ones.

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Tom 38
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Re: BBC

TBH most journos these days seem to think that "newsworthy" means either "people talking about it on twitter" or "people unable to talk on twitter", it isn't just a BBC thing.

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IPv4 addresses now EXHAUSTED in Latin America and the Caribbean

Tom 38
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Re: two errors

-bis (twice) and -ter (thrice) are suffixes that ITU put on to specifications to indicate the second and third revision of that specification.

Eg, the first 600 baud standard was V22, this allowed 1200bps and was shortly followed by V22bis, which allowed 2400bps.

Basically, he's saying the current spec is bollocks and we'll wait for V2.

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Tom 38
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urged businesses and governments […] to act swiftly and adopt IPv6 without any further delay.

Hah! I'm sure that's what they're going to do, and not just roll out CGN to their end users.

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'CAPTAIN CYBORG': The wild-eyed prof behind 'machines have become human' claims

Tom 38
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Stop

Re: Kevin Warwick..

Crikey you are a cretin aren't you. A gay joke and a dwarf joke in one thread, nothing else useful to say? Why don't you try keeping your idiotic "humour" to yourself.

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TalkTalk whips BT with riding crop over sport fibs in telly ad

Tom 38
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WTF?

Re: Seems a bit OTT (if quite correct)

Which has fuck all to do with whether the advert is misleading or not.

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BILLIONS of digital dollars go AWOL to cybercrooks, says study

Tom 38
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You're so right that in the UK we now have officials which measure and estimate how much hookers and drug dealers add to the economy - and its a LOT.

There is a fascinating BBC article on the data:

Extrapolating from research for 2004, the ONS estimates that there were 60,879 prostitutes working in the UK in 2009. Based on Dutch research they assumed that each one serviced 25 clients a week, with an average price per visit of £67.16.

and

What's important for the measurement of the national accounts is the margin taken by dealers, except in the case of half of cannabis consumed in the UK, which is assumed to have been grown here.

The ONS took figures for drug sales from a one-off Home Office survey of drug use in 2003, which gave them an average amount of drugs consumed per person. It took retail prices from a UN report and adjusted for purity using evidence from seizures by police and border agencies. Comparing this value with the UN's wholesale drugs prices gives the margin that the ONS is interested in.

Each year's figures for demand are derived from the number of drug users shown in the Crime Survey for England and Wales. That gives a figure for 2009 of £3.6bn for drugs other than cannabis and £830m for cannabis.

<3 stats.

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Texan parks quadcopter atop Dallas Cowboys stadium

Tom 38
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Re: Insurance?

No, you just get to sue them and take their lawn chair.

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Look inside ELON MUSK'S CAR! Tesla S wundervehicle has voom

Tom 38
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Re: Superchargers Free!

This may have gone over your head, I was using scientific notation in order to get across the magnitude of the issue at hand. If li-ion electric cars are the solution to our reliance on oil, then what is required in order to have a society pretty much like ours where transportation is a personal freedom.

You can clearly see from the numbers that producing enough li-ion batteries cheaply enough or in sufficient quantities to power the worlds vehicles. It is not like li-ion is a new, barely investigated or exploited technology that can be easily made cheaper to produce, it is already at scale, and producing the kind of cells that go in to a Tesla.

So, we have a technology, cool as it is, that is not going to "save the planet", it is not going to reduce vehicle emissions, since only a tiny proportion of upper middle class people and their delivery drivers will be driving one. Fine. The problem comes when these users insist that the rest of us pay for their toy with infrastructure investment in to the grid so that they can use it as they like.

This comes after the same people force us to pay for thousands of miles of new grid to get cables offshore and to the top of hills, which could have paid for every coal fired power station in the UK to be replaced with nuclear.

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Tom 38
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Re: Superchargers Free!

For everyone in the UK to change to an electric car within one year, we would need to build more lithium ion batteries than have ever been made since they were invented.

Math:

Registered vehicles in the UK: 3.5x10^7 vehicles

Li-ion cells in each Tesla S: 7x10^3 cells

Worldwide Li-ion production: 6.6*10^8 cells

Years of current worldwide Li-ion production to equip UK with enough cells for cars: 371

Li-ion powered cars: for the rich only. Being smug about "saving the environment" whilst you use 10000 times the resources of the next guy to get to work - priceless.

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UK govt 'tearing up road laws' for Google's self-driving cars: THE TRUTH

Tom 38
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Re: @'s water music

Modern airlines can and do practically fly themselves, including take off and landing.

And they do this by operating in largely uncongested space using scheduled flight plans and whole teams of meatjobs in centres around the world to ensure they don't crash when they do get in crowded spaces.

It is possible to write software that is as near to perfect as possible. It just takes a lot of effort and great care.

In flight's case, by putting constraints on the variables in a way that is not possible with current road traffic, and using mechanical turks in the form of air traffic controllers. If there is a human in the box, it's not automation folks.

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Tom 38
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Re: Not allowed to drive unless

Don't ask an MS car for an ETA

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Tom 38
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Re: I'm against it at this time. here's why...

should the cause of the incident be attributed to the decisions made by the autonomous driving software rather than, say a human driver's bad decisions.

Interesting. Currently, it is almost always a human driver's bad decisions that cause an accident, however we do not assign blame like that - you can make all the wrong choices, cause a serious accident and not have any blame assigned to you - quite rare though, Id have thought.

Say there was a death. The CPS have to determine if they can get a prosecution for manslaughter, for dangerous driving or for driving without due care and attention (not full list, some names probably wrong). Sometimes, it is just bad luck.

Now, this is hard enough to do even when it is a human driving and can tell you what they did. How do you determine if a computer program was driving dangerously? If the radar detector is dirty and your autocar runs in to the back of someone, are you liable, as you didn't clean the sensor, or is the software liable, because it didn't detect the sensor was faulty? If it's you, are you "without due care and attention", or is the software "driving dangerously".

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GAME ON: Top 10 tellies for a World Cup kicking

Tom 38
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Re: Sir

The good TV has the good image processing chip in it that costs £100 more than the other. Well, it costs you £100 more. However, because it costs you £100 more, they don't put it in the basic TVs, they only put it in the fancy ones.

Therefore, if you want the best picture, you're going to need to need to buy one with a bunch of stupid features that you won't use, and probably don't even work that well.

Don't expect anything to ever get fixed on your TV. If it doesn't do it when you buy it, it probably won't ever - so demo if there is a specific feature you want.

When you do go buy a TV though, don't worry. Pick one that is cheap enough for you to not cry and has a good enough picture, and then get it home. Looking at racks and racks of TV screens trying to say "this one is better" and then "no wait, this one" is a disaster, pretty much they will all look fine when you get home.

Finally, don't buy any of the TVs listed here. El Reg is only listing new models of TVs, save yourself a fortune and go to Richer Sounds and get the model that the new model replaced - roughly the same features, roughly the same spec, around half the price. Even the cheap one El Reg listed, you can get a better cheaper one if you don't buy the very latest cheap model!

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Tom 38
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with a nod to Sony’s FIFA sponsorship there’s a dedicated football mode which fine-tunes audio

..which detects when you're viewing ITV and mutes the commentary.

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Compare Apple's and oranges: LaCie's hi-vis jacket-wearing disk is not for hipsters

Tom 38
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I love LaCie

They really have the balls to take any old tat, put it in a slightly prettier than average enclosure, and charge an absolute fortune for it.

"Mais oius Mssr, our petit hard drive case is perfect pour votre marketing content. Il est ruggedized. Non, Mssr, you do not want this same no-name thing from Dabs that is half the price, how will you know it is reassuringly expensive and work with your reassuringly expensive Mac?".

Thing is, they've been doing this since the 90s and still get on with it - its the capitalist dream, taking tat and adding "value". Magic.

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Thanks for nothing, OpenSSL, grumbles stonewalled De Raadt

Tom 38
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Re: So....

Interesting -- may we have a reference?

Sure:

openbsd.tech

You are welcome. Stuart Henderson wrote the draft, but he forgot that part, and Damien Miller and I realized it was needed. We sensed there might be some ambiguity... we'll take care the next time an OpenOffice problem also.

... as long as you aren't using FreeBSD or a derivative (hint: Jupiper), you are fine. That's the only place I know of an OpenSSH hole.

Oh now I sense some angst. Please ask Kirk McKusick, he knows the story about why this is not being disclosed to FreeBSD. Sometimes I feel a bit sorry for them (and for him), but then the next minute I don't feel sorry because there's damn good reasons they won't be told about what I found.

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Tom 38
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Re: So....

What is ironic is that de Raadt does exactly the same thing with OpenSSH, which is his project. He has explicitly said that any security bugs in OpenSSH, he will not report it to the FreeBSD project, because someone once made him cry.

Act like a kid, get treated like a kid.

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Google reaches into own silicon brain to slash electricity bill

Tom 38
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Re: All good stuff

Especially as in a DC, power is your biggest cost. If your devices use less power, then they generate less heat. If they generate less heat, you can pack more of them in per rack. If you can pack more in per rack, you can have more devices in the DC period, and the cost of hosting is reduced.

I'm sure google have well specified DCs, but we often can't fill our rack because our DC provider can't* sell us more power, because they are near their cooling limit. If we used less power, we could have more per-rack, and we would need less racks/have more servers.

* Of course they can give us more current, but it is exponentially expensive, to the point where filling a rack (using say 22A) is almost as expensive as taking another whole 13A rack.

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Game of Thrones scribe George R R Martin will KILL YOU for US$20K

Tom 38
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1) Find $20k

2) Change name to "Ned Stark"

3) ....

4) PROFIT?

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Marc Andreessen: Edward Snowden is a 'textbook traitor'

Tom 38
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Re: get over it!

Crikey, you Americans and your constitution and bill of rights. The NSA is the "Department of Breaking The Law When We Think We Need To", and you are surprised that they break more laws than the ones you wanted them to break?

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Londoners urged to cut landlines and take up wireless broadband

Tom 38
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"The voice service probably only accounts for a few pence or a quid at most"

In which case I'd rather have the few pence.

My ISP provides FTTP and also provides my home phone line, if I want one. If I take the phone line, it costs me £10 a month extra. If I don't take the phone line, it costs me £12.50 a month extra.

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DevOps is actually a thing – and people are willing to pay for it

Tom 38
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Re: CI != Code Review?

Except when the client or management say that it HAS to be patched up and out the door for the trade show or that there's no more money left and we have to go with what we've got (plus a little unpaid overtime).

Yes, every two weeks we re-evaluate everything we are doing to determine whether it is still worth doing more work to that for the business (not us). We tell the business how long it takes to deliver quality, so if we haven't got enough time to deliver quality, either we've been slow or we're bad at estimating.

Given we are only estimating tasks that take less than 2 weeks, you really can't be that far out. And if the feature you're working on was scored for "2 days work" (thats not how we score things), and it takes 10 and is still not done, then you either didn't get enough details from the project owner (hence his fault - the job of the project owner is to give well specified tasks to the team), or the task is overly complex and should be re-evaluated anyway.

Before you move to a scheme like this, you have to have buy-in from all the key stakeholders , so that when that trade show rolls around, you can easily say "No. This was not agreed on. If you want us to work on things, you have to present it through the project owner who will prioritize your requests alongside everyone elses.".

I've happily said this to C-level execs, they agreed this working model. This shifts the discussion about whether you do something away from your team; it's then a business decision, and they can horse-trade all they like in order to change what you do *next* sprint - no-one can change what you do *this* sprint.

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Tom 38
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Re: CI != Code Review?

CI != "automatically push to live"

CI is having processes in place such that you can be confident that you can always push to live without breaking things.

We do things on a 2 week sprint cycle, which means every task, change request or feature we do must be fully complete, tested and deployable by the end of those nine days (or it gets re-scored for the next sprint).

Once the sprint is complete, on the tenth day we demo the completed tasks to the commercial team, the maintenance team and then release to live.

During the sprint, the maintenance team will make as many maintenance releases they need, all also underpinned by CI - or they might kick things back to us if we broke them in the previous release.

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Linux users at risk as ANOTHER critical GnuTLS bug found

Tom 38
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Re: Open source - crap code

Rich, what you don't realise is that most code in the world isn't just crap, its real crap. Code that no-one ever has to show to anyone is the crappest code of all.

The point of OSS is that you, yes YOU, can look at the code and determine if it is crap or not. GnuTLS has long been known to be crap.

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Feds hunt 30-year-old alleged to be lord of Gameover botnet

Tom 38
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1) Feds have taken control of the botnet's C&C servers

2) The botnet is currently idle, as no instructions are being sent from C&C servers

3) It will only take approximately two weeks for the botnet owner to setup new C&C servers and 're-capture' the botnet.

4) Now the feds just have control of former C&C servers.

So you have 2 weeks of your computer not being abused to disinfect it, before it will once again become part of an active botnet.

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100% driverless Wonka-wagon toy cars? Oh Google, you're having a laugh

Tom 38
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Re: Some things over-exaggerated.

Industrial robots aren't cheap either, but Foxconn's finding them cheaper than minimum-wage assembly line workers.

That would be the "Replacing 100s of cheap skinjob with an expensive machine is good business" clause then...

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Tom 38
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Re: Some things over-exaggerated.

Some things have been exaggerated all over - automated cars won't replace pizza delivery guys because pizza delivery guys are cheap and automated cars are not.

Replacing 100s of cheap skinjob with an expensive machine is good business, replacing one cheap skinjob with one expensive machine is not.

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Tom 38
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Re: Nice idea

In theory, and in practice, the tube could be fully automated - the DLR already is. The reason it is not is not technical, it is political.

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FORGET OUR PAST, 12,000 Europeans implore Google

Tom 38
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Re: Confused

No, I didn't think these would require a jury. I also don't have such a jaded and hopelessly cynical view as you on our courts, which are independent and whose judgements are accountable, and can be appealed to higher courts with multiple judges.

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Tom 38
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Re: This is like

Bollocks.

When Russia or China do something like this, it is the State determining what content is available. This is individuals being given the ability to correct incorrect information held about them in a database by a company, and is in fact a right we in the real free world have had for a long time.

The only really interesting thing about it is that Google had to be forced to recognise firstly that it does in fact operate in the EU, and maintains databases of personal information. There is no new right, there is Google crying because it has to follow the law.

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Tom 38
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Re: Confused

You're not a little confused, you're a lot confused.

Peter Sutcliffe cannot have his past forgotten because it is still relevant. He can apply to Google to have his past forgotten, Google can say "Fuck off and get a court order", and the court will simply say "Fuck off".

The recent court judgement says that when the court does order Google to remove invalid or out of date data from their database, Google must do so. Google's argument seems to be "bwaah! don't wanna!"

To clarify, the information is in Google's database, which is the link between the keywords searched for, and the resources found for those keywords. This judgement is that where a court has ruled that the resources contain invalid or our of date data that contravenes someone's right to privacy, then Google must not link certain keywords to certain resources.

The purpose of the court is to judge the relative merits of the individual's right to privacy and Google's rights, and Google do not have to do anything until a court has ordered them to. Google is upset because they don't want to do anything with courts at all.

Their solution is to they hire a raft of PR guys to spin this story as much as possible to confuse people in to thinking that this means people like Peter Sutcliffe can be erased from the internet. This form and the 12,000 "requests" that it has received are solely designed to give Google's PR people a story that they can spin to newspapers and confuse people further.

So far, they have had to remove one link to one article, containing out-dated financial information, when you search for one guys name, so that the guy can stop having it included in his credit score. That is it.

Poor google, how will they cope.

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YOSEMITE GLAM: Apple unveils gussied up OS X

Tom 38
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Linux

Re: Sync?

Pfft, this isn't the 90s, the Linux users are the trendy hipsters.

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