* Posts by Tom 38

2701 posts • joined 21 Jul 2009

BACK OFF, spooks: UK legal hacking code should be 'resisted at all costs' says lawyer

Tom 38
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Unhappy

Re: Hacking....

Alas, the jargon file is full of our words, but the world does not use our words how we would use them.

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Grab your pitchforks: Ubuntu to switch to systemd on Monday

Tom 38
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Re: It's a question of complexity vs democracy

phil dude: Feel free to take all those "non open source" BSD licensed components of your Linux OS out then. Not so much fun without a GUI, ssl, ssh, png, jpeg..... is it?

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Tom 38
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Re: @DainB ZFS vs BTRFS...

zfs-on-linux is not prime time, because the guys who run the zfs-on-linux project mainly care about storing vast amounts of archive data, they don't care much about performance, so caches aren't unified and other performance issues.

If you want to do interesting things with ZFS, you're using Indiana or BSD.

btrfs is a joke. It's been "the next thing" for many years, but it still doesn't match even what ZFS had 5 years ago.

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Tom 38
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Re: read around...

i've not got a problem with binary logs, if a file is corrupted, its unreadable no matter what format its in. The journal viewing program is brilliant.

Jesus wept. What the fuck is wrong with grep and tail that they need to be re-invented in to specific single use programs?

GNUs Not Unix, and getting more not unix as time goes on. Where are the small sharp tools, the programs that do trivial things in isolation?

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Top Euro court ends mega ebook VAT slash in France, Luxembourg

Tom 38
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Re: VAT Fraud!

The rich make the tax rules and they certainly don't make them for the poor.

The tax rules (we call them laws) are made by parliament. Whether that is "rich" or "poor" depends on who you voted in. If we had had a Tory government for the last 36 years, that argument might have some merit, but at the moment the tax laws are largely those put in place by Labour.

If those were written in mind for the rich, some people got some splainin to do? Has Hodge been "shocked" yet that she had 11 years to change the tax laws in order to nail multinationals minimising taxes (like her family firm does), but failed each and every year?

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BOFH in mugnificent return to Cash'n'Carrion

Tom 38
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Re: 10 Quid!

I thought all aussies were all super rich miners now, or at least ripping off the super rich bogans who do go mining.

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

Tom 38
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Re: Tim, if there's a weakness in the argument you've presented here

A load of bunk. Goods and services are frequently more expensive in rural areas due to lack of competition and cost (monetary and time) of travelling to alternate providers that are cheaper.

In London, with in 5 minutes of my house I can walk to 8 different shops that will sell me a litre of milk. All of them are around the same price, because if they weren't, they wouldn't get trade. The convenience stores that are open 24x7x365 charge a little more, but I can pop in to them at 3 AM on Christmas Eve and still get milk and bread.

Where I grew up in rural Suffolk, within 5 minutes walk I can get to a cow. 10 minutes in a car gets you to the nearest store - the only store for 8 miles in any direction - where you can buy milk for about 50% more than it costs than in Tesco. If you want a supermarket, its a 25 minute drive in the opposite direction, costing you a fiver in petrol.

Speaking of petrol, you'd better fill up at that supermarket, because everywhere else is 5-10p a litre more expensive. If they are still open, that is.

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Tom 38
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Re: I do not think it means what you think it means...

Wealth inequality is a nonsense. I'm one of the poorest people on the planet according to my wealth, but in actuality I have extremely high levels of comfort to go along with my high net debt. This makes my wealth less than a subsistence farmer, who at least owns his land outright and has positive wealth.

It is a nonsense pushed out to make for interesting headlines. The fastest way to reduce wealth inequality would be to forbid people to take out mortgages. This doesn't make their lives better, is worse in the long run, it just moves people from negative wealth and good long term prospects to positive wealth and no long term prospects.

That is clearly nonsense, it just demonstrates what an intrinsically bad metric "wealth" is to measure the inequalities that exist in society.

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End in sight for Google, Apple, Intel and Adobe wage-fixing lawsuit

Tom 38
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Some justice

The defendants offer bribes to plaintiffs counsel, the judge accepts it and that is justice? Why on earth should the plaintiffs settle, when the facts are clear and evidence is totally in their favour?

Oh that's right, there are no actual plaintiffs, this is a class action, so 1/3rd to the lawyers, 1/3rd to a distribution fund managed by the lawyers, 1/3rd donated to "charities" run by the lawyers/defendants.

Why let the boring things like a trial, allocation of guilt and assessment of damages gets in the way of the gravy.

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First peek at the next Ubuntu 15.04 nester line-up

Tom 38
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He's not complaining about the numbering system, he's complaining about the number of different versions of the same release - the difference between "Ubuntu MATE" and "Xubuntu" ought to be one (meta) package, does that really require a separate distribution?

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Bad movie: Hackers can raid networks with burnt Blu-Rays

Tom 38
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Re: Java - again

There is no reason to have Java installed on any computer, for any reason.

How do you reconcile that position with the fact that blu ray are players mandated to support BD-J in order to get one of those lovely blu ray icons?

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P0wned plug-in puts a million WordPress sites at risk of attack

Tom 38
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Re: Fundamental problems

Similar issues here - we won't let Marketing maintain and run their own Wordpress server, and they refuse to allow us to maintain and run it, as they then can't just whack any plugin they fancy on it.

The impasse was solved by them buying (at outrageous prices) hosted wordpress that we have nothing to do with. It's going to blow up at some point, guaranteed, but it won't be on our servers, in our network and with our data.

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Boffin: Use my bionic breakthrough for good, and not super cyborgs

Tom 38
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Re: Once

they've perfected this technique.... theres no reason why the arm needs to remain attatched to the controller.

I think you are overlooking the role the mind plays in working out new routes for nerves to travel. You don't put on the prosthetic and away you go, you have to discover the right signals to send to achieve an effect, and train your mind to send that signal.

Part of that works because the arm is, well, an arm. This is also why the phantom pain goes away - they don't miss an arm, because they've got one. A disembodied arm is not an arm. You would need to train your mind to ignore the impossibility of it.

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Google offers 'INFINITY MILLION DOLLARS' for bugs in Chrome

Tom 38
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That's not a bug, that's a missing feature. Big difference.

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

Tom 38
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Re: vi + ms + troff (+ tbl + eqn + pic + scripts + sccs + etc. as required)

WYSIWYG was just something that happened to other people, wasn't it?

You missed that he said "scripts". scripts encompasses everything, so how do you know he has no WYSIWYG?

It is trivial to have vim autosave. It is trivial to monitor files for modifiction. It is trivial to generate and display the content if it generates. It's especially trivial to automate the lot.

Open source isn't really about sandals, beards and zealots, its about having simple single use tools that you combine to do the things that you want. It's like the guy 10 posts above, "I love linux, but most of my windows applications wont run under wine" - buddy, you're holding it wrong.

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Didn't the Left once want the WORKERS to get all the dosh?

Tom 38
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Joke

Re: @Sarah Balfour - However

How much would a President Tony or a President Maggie cost the country?

"President Tony", I can put good bounds on the cost of that.

"President Maggie", I'll need to do some digging and some research...

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Porn on Blogger – Google takes stiff action

Tom 38
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Happy

Big deal

Not as if we're talking about tumblr

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ACLU: Here's a secret – cops are using the FBI's fake cell-tower tech to track crims' phones

Tom 38
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Re: How long can it work?

How would that stop your phone connecting to a base station and sending its IMEI (and location) to that base station?

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FCC Republicans slam brakes on net neutrality, but this wagon ain't slowing

Tom 38
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For whom is the internet?

giving consumers better broadband choices.

We're consumers now. Brainless sheep waiting to consume whatever is pushed to us. Make sure that we can consume or we might start thinking.

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'Lenovo, Superfish put smut on my system' – class-action lawsuit

Tom 38
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Lenovo are wrong

But has she suffered $10k worth of harm? For seeing some bikinis?

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AMD's new Carrizo: The x86 notebook processor that thinks it's a GPU

Tom 38
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Headmaster

The Carrizo APU conforms to HSA 1.0, .. The HSA 1.0 specification is due to be published in the next few weeks.

Unpublished specs are the easiest to conform to.

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Marconi: The West of England's very own Italian wireless pioneer

Tom 38
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Re: UKIP

I was thinking of Georg Ludwig, Elector of Hanover, but yeah, there is a long list.

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Tom 38
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Re: UKIP

It's impossible for foreigners to win noble prizes; to get gonged, you have to be born British (I think).

You are thinking of US presidents, we have no such limitations. Most of our nobility are French and we even let a funny little german guy come and be our King.

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Why IP telephony is about more than just saving money

Tom 38
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It's a shame that those VoIP-based call centers can't get their act together though.

There are no non VoIP call centres.

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Tom 38
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WTF?

if you have had a proper lightbulb moment you should be thinking: “Who needs a number?”

I had to re-read the sub line to check whether this was a Steve Bong article.

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BOFH: The Great HellDesk geek leave seek

Tom 38
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My employers moved from a hand rolled Lotus Notes DB for HR and someone handing out payslips for payroll, to an awful 3rd party software for HR and payroll is "in the cloud".

The HR software requires IE 7 or 8. The Payroll site requires IE 9+. Neither of them work in anything else, and I use FreeBSD...

Now that we don't have to maintain our own HR software.... we spend longer managing the updates that we pay the vendor for.

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Facebook security chap finds 10 Superfish sub-species

Tom 38
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Re: Level the playing field

You don't have to use linux, you can use BSD, FreeDOS, Plan 9, BeOS, CP/M - anything you like!

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So long, Lenovo, and no thanks for all the super-creepy Superfish

Tom 38
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Re: What is it with advertisers?

This is the problem: "Advertising *doesn't* work"

Some of the smarter advertisers know this. They know their jobs are less than worthless (in that a lot of advertising probably harms the brands being promoted), and built on a lie, and they're panicking

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. No!

They aren't panicking in the slightest. Although advertising is largely bollocks, the client doesn't know that and feels they have to compete with their competitor. It's nothing to do with the advertising company or the consumer, ad spend is driven by corporate fears of loss of business.

As companies go to the wall, they will often spend more and more on advertising in some mad attempt to bring in more revenue.

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Wi-Fi beam-steering tech could KILL OFF fixed home networks

Tom 38
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Re: 3 TV's

very few people have ethernet cabling throughout their house

Before broadcast TV was launched, very few people had coaxial distribution networks throughout their house. Now everyone does. Gee, I wonder how that happened.

Most (well thought out) new builds have ethernet plumbed in like they do telephone and aerials. Annoyingly, the people who put up my place thought I would want a phone socket in my master bedroom rather than a data socket, unlike every other room in the flat.

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Evil CSS injection bug warning: Don't let hackers cross paths with your website

Tom 38
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WTF?

see icon -->

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AT&T suddenly finds demand for 1Gbps fiber in Kansas City – just after Google arrived

Tom 38
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FAIL

Re: Nice bandwidth if you can get it

Hint:

Mbps - Megabits per second

MB/s - Megabytes per second

Meg - name of a cat

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Inside GOV.UK: 'CHAOS' and 'NIGHTMARE' as trendy Cabinet Office wrecked govt websites

Tom 38
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Sympathy for the devil

NB: I don't work for GDS!

These sorts of projects inevitably have these sorts of reactions. The project is a simplification project - take all the shit on 300 websites, condense it down to one standard and get rid of all the useless crap.

There are two ways you can do this,

1) you can spend many many years enumerating what all the useless crap is, design a system that encapsulates all the needs of those 300 systems, work out a fully complete plan to move it all over, and execute those plans.

2) work out the rough basis of what is required, the "minimal marketable features", implement them, handle whatever fallout there is, improving the new system to the point where it works.

Clearly they went with option 2, its "agile", and its much quicker to initial delivery.

With option 1, you should get a lot less of these issues, but this is not what has happened historically in government IT. By trying to cover everything, requirements grow to the point where the project is a massive behemoth that can only be tackled by one of the usual outsourcing suspects, and often has requirements that differ wildly to the point that the project may not be possible to be delivered.

So, they went with option 2 - its the cheap option, we're a cheap country, we have to put up with the cheap implementation. If they are truly agile however, they should now be identifying all these new user stories that they need to implement, and continuously improve the site until it does do what is required.

With agile, the proof of the pudding is not in the eating; invariably with agile it will taste like shit first off, but it should mature in to something suitable for purpose.

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Boffins grasp Big Knob, get ready to go ALL THE WAY at the LHC proton-punisher

Tom 38
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Re: Custard

If it could turn one half in to Apple and Blackberry Crumble and one half in to custard, that would approximate one of my happy places.

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Tom 38
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Re: Question

I hope you can catch the flavor of the question.

All hope is lost.

CERN controls very small particles using magnets, accelerates them to high speeds around a ring and then hits them in to other things very precisely to see what happens.

These very small particles fly around us at high speeds all the time, its just without isolating and controlling them precisely then you don't know what has hit what else where, when and at what speed, and if you don't know that you can't tell anything from it.

So back to your question...

If a big bang is re-created, will the creators be gods?

The big bang? The moment where all the matter that is, was and will ever be throughout existence was compressed in to the space the size of a pin prick? You're worried that a bunch of physics geeks firing two protons at each other in Switzerland will cause that to happen?

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£100 MILLION poured down drain on failed UK.gov IT projects - in just ONE YEAR

Tom 38
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Re: FOSS for all...

So start with a mandate that NO non-FOSS software can be used AT ALL, within a useful time frame, if no alternative exists.

That way we can start to fund the "add feature X" to "program Y" for the use of "project Z" to bridge the gap.

These are called deliverables/milestones. We have them on grants, if we don't meet them we don't get year 2.

Er, what do you think these losses are? You contract your developers to make the features you want, they develop them, they aren't suitable, "they dont get year 2", and a £1m write down is reported in the reg.

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Thecus N4310 4-bay: A NAS-ty beast for the budget-conscious

Tom 38
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Pass

It supports RAID 0, 1, 5, 6 and 10 and JBOD arrays.

Snore. Nothing fancier? ZFS? LVM? Bueller?

Multiple RAID volumes are also supported but because it uses the EXT4 file system the maximum for any volume is 16TB.

Ext4 supports volumes up to 1 exabyte, but only with a larger block size. So what is actually unsupported is using a non 4kb block size on ext4. 16TB sounds a lot, but its not - buy this, put 4TB disks in it, wait 3 years, upgrade the disks to 8TB disks and you are over that 16TB limit.

Price: £235 (unpopulated) RRP

Just shy of £60 per bay..

I am probably slightly beyond the target audience - too tight and too demanding. My current home storage server has enclosures with 32 bays (just 16 populated atm) for around 28TB of ZFS storage, for which I paid roughly the same as the Thecus..

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Proposed US law could deal knockout blow to FBI in overseas cloud privacy ding-dongs

Tom 38
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Re: For the clueless...

Yes, The House That J. Edgar Built would never think of investigating people's personal lives for no reason.

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Gov.UK tells Londoners: You too can cash in on the 'sharing economy'

Tom 38
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Re: Isn't it wonderful?

It would be more wonderful if:

1) An MP was only allowed to have one job (MP)

2) That job was paid the average UK wage.

3) They had to live where they're the MP.

4) They make up the rest with graft?

In one single blow, you'd make it so that the only people who were MPs were those who are solely interested in power and exploiting that power.

Besides which, who becomes an MP for the wealth? Most of those coming from outside of politics would have taken a pay cut when elected as an MP.

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NO BRAIN needed to use Samsung's next flagship mobe

Tom 38
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Re: Mobile users trailing behind web surfers?

If you actually hit the monkey though, you win a prize.

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Ericsson and Qualcomm in BONKERS 450Mbps 4G test lab demo

Tom 38
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Re: Not so fast..

Given the likely signal strengths involved, it's probably that your AP will start interfering with your phone rather than the other way around.

Entirely unrelated, I once fell for the allure of wireless, bought myself a fancy logitech 2.4 GHz gaming mouse and a fancy logitech 5.1 surround sound system with 2.4GHz wireless rear speakers. Both work great, but if you listen to music whilst using the mouse, every other packet the mouse sends seems to be dropped, which makes for an "interesting" gaming experience.

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Big Data, empty bellies: How supermarkets tweak prices just for the sake of YOUR LOVE

Tom 38
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Re: Collateral Damage from all this.

Farmer's markets are good, but you have to live close to the source. Imagine being in, say a London or New York city and trying to find a farmer's market.

I grew up in East Anglian countryside, on a farm, surrounded by farms and farm shops.

Its 50x easier to find a farmers market in London than it is in the countryside, because "farmers" (traders) like to come to areas where there are lots of people, and not lots of farms - its good for the margin.

There are traditional, established markets like Peckham, Walthamstow and South Ken, but there are also irregular artisanal farm traders setting up shop all over the place, eg in Stratford shopping centre on a Sunday, the regular market is replaced by "french"* farmers.

* mostly from Kent.

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Tom 38
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Re: More neutral language please

On the right track, Zog. 'Discount' implies a reduction of some kind, but Aldi, Lidl don't discount on previously higher prices, they're just cheaper than the others.

In FMCG terms however, it means they purchase goods to sell from the discounter channel. Aldi and Lidl have low prices by buying things that are cheap when they are cheap and selling them cheap. This means that everything in there is cheap, but if you go back every 3 weeks, it won't have the same range of stuff in them.

Tesco/Sainsburys/Morrison tend to keep the same products in stock most of the year, baring seasonal line items.

Its not derogative, it just describes the business model.

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Valve set for OpenGL BIG REVEAL at upcoming conference

Tom 38
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Re: Are AMD and nVidia on board?

I'm deadly serious about the DirectX API being an open standard. Lots of Microsoft technologies are open standards. Why not this API?

First, take DirectX.

MS has always used DirectX in two ways, as a marketing tool to sell OS licenses (Want DX10? You have to buy Vista, not available on XP, Want DX11? You have to buy 7, not included in Vista), and as a way to lock games makers in to Windows and Xbox. Lock in does not work with an open standard.

Secondly, OpenGL already exists. OpenGL is a real open standard; the development of the standard happens in an open environment where any member of the Khronos group can contribute. Anyone wanting to use a standard graphical library on multiple platforms will use OpenGL.

DirectX has Microsoft behind it. OpenGL has AMD/ATI, Apple Inc., ARM Holdings, Epic Games, Imagination Technologies, Intel Corporation, Nokia, Nvidia, Qualcomm, Samsung Electronics, Sony Computer Entertainment, Adobe, Amazon.com, Blizzard Entertainment Inc., Codeplay, Ericsson, Google, Huawei Technologies, IBM, LG Electronics, Lucasfilm Ltd., Matrox Graphics, Microsoft Corporation, Mozilla, Oculus VR, Panasonic, Pixar, Renesas Electronics, Synopsys, Texas Instruments, Unity Technologies, Valve corporation, VIA Alliance Semiconductor, VMware....

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Tom 38
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WTF?

Re: Are AMD and nVidia on board?

I have always wondered why Microsoft never created an open standard from DirectX

Seriously?

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First look: Ordnance Survey lifts kimono on next-gen map app

Tom 38
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Re: Spotted what's missing?

I'm hoping that they have all these things as layers that you can drop on as you will. Boom! No more churches or tumuli to distract me!

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Tom 38
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To be a little bit fair to Google maps, looking at Google's street view, the road into OS HQ does have barriers so is clearly private property.

OS maps include vast amounts of information that is on private property. Being fair would be to point out how shit a map that is generated by driving a car around public roads can be.

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RIP Windows RT: Microsoft murders ARM Surface, Nokia tablets

Tom 38
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Re: hmm

ARM SOCs are nothing like what people understand as a PC.

Which is why ARM is getting EUFI.

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'Tech' City hasn't got proper broadband and it's like BT doesn't CARE

Tom 38
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Sympathetic - to a point

The cited case is of a "hi tech firm"* in the most connected part of the country, doing things with digital media, who decided "Wow, this place is awesome to set up our business, it's cheap, there's a trendy barrista on the corner and we're only yards away from the Spread Eagle!"

They didn't take in to account highly available network connectivity, or they would have chosen somewhere where they could get cheap connectivity.

Another option, if you make your money in digital media, is to, y'know, fucking pay for a leased line like the rest of us. Available throughout London for less than a monkey a month, probably less than they spend on coffee.

* They most assuredly are not, they are a hipster "digital agency".

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Breaking news: BBC FINALLY spots millions of mugshots on cop database

Tom 38
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Re: What purpose?

Don't forget the Police also have access to the DVLA database so they can match your face to your driving licence if they stop you, amongst other things.

They can look at specific records in the DVLA database. They are not allowed to search through each photo on the DVLA database to compare it to CCTV, and then use that as "evidence".

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Netflix goes TITSUP WORLDWIDE (Total Inability To Support Usual Programming)

Tom 38
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Simian army irregulars?

Did the chaos monkeys escape from barracks?

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