I shudder to think what might have been on this site if MS hadn't grabbed it.
127 posts • joined 18 Aug 2009
I shudder to think what might have been on this site if MS hadn't grabbed it.
"I meant to ask pTerry if there was a connection but it is to late now"
I'm sure there was. Terry was a fan before he was a writer, and fans of his/my age generally knew Pavane well. (Also Keith Roberts' reputation, but that's a different matter.) The signalling technology was much the same, but the purposes each author used it for were very different.
So many people at NASA have a PhD (or two, or more!) that they reserve "Doctor" for medics.
Yes, there's a big difference between the block, a large chunk of metal with channels for (usually) water cooling designed to remove waste heat, and the manifold which is the relatively thin tube that takes air to the engine.
However, why aim for the engine when it would be so much easier to put the hole through the driver or the radiator or the fuel tank? This looks more like a PR stunt, just as the first time a Star Wars era laser "destroyed" a missile the missile was stationary and held under such compression forces that it crumpled the moment it warmed up. Until this is shown to work under battlefield conditions it's at best a possibility and at worst a hype to get more Pentagon money.
"water in which the Hydrogen is an isotope called Deuterium in which a Neutron is present"
We German have become?
"Anybody know if IPFire for a RiPi is any good?"
If by RiPi you mean Raspberry Pi, I believe the ethernet interface runs via the USB controller, and probably isn't up to FTTC speeds. I recently replaced my old Alix router because it was struggling to cope with FTTC speeds.
Now I use a newer Atom D525 mini-ITX system running pfSense. Ticks over at a few percent CPU, doesn't break a sweat even under heavy download. Just make sure the network interfaces are Intel rather than RealTek.
I use FreeBSD - we set demons on them.
Remember that your eyes' response to light is pretty much like the ears' response to sound - logarithmic. The bright daylight today is clocking up ~50,000 lux on my light meter whereas a room at night lit by a single light bulb may be about 100 lux or less but your eyes adapt, so a factor of 2 or 4 is no big deal.
Is that the latest term for infantryman, or do they just mean any grunt not in a brothel?
"Remember when GCHQ was working for us and not targeting us?"
and turning it off and turning it on again was exactly the wrong thing to do.
Usually, whenever I absolutely need directions, or to look up a phone number or something, there's no signal and finding one involves sprinting up the nearest hill or climbing a flagpole and standing on one leg, waving the phone in one hand and sacrificing a chicken with the other, at which point the gods of telephony give me one bar for 3.8 seconds before they start giggling and take it away again.
Except as far as I can see that walk is in some sort of fantasy universe version of Brockenhurst. I go there regularly and the A377 isn't that shape, there's no Argyll Road, Duryard or Pennsylvania in the area AFAIR, the town is mainly to the west of the A337 rather than the east and it's not built on steep hills as the contours would suggest. Also the idea that any walk in the immediate vicinity of Brockenhurst is challenging and would take 4.3 hours to walk 5.6 miles is ridiculous. The worst thing you meet is mud and some flooding after heavy spells of rain.
"the standard may degrade over time, as his legs age"
Do what the economists do to deal with inflation - "all speeds normalised to 2012 Usains"
It's a planet, not a lake. Slight difference of scale.
According to Google, about 60% of adults wear glasses at least some of the time. Does anybody know if any of the wearable displays work with glasses? I hate to think how these would interact with varifocals.
"The rice grain-sized device, dubbed a "maser", is a minuscule microwave laser"
Oh dear, this was written by someone without knowledge of physics history. Masers existed several years before lasers, and the latter were initially called "optical masers".
What? Article 12 is the right to marry, not sure how that keeps Big Brother away (and it certainly doesn't keep Big Mother-in-law away :-( ). I think you mean Sections 12 & 8 of the act.
Which unpleasant bits of what animal is it made from? Ferret anuses?
Any word can be verbed...
but excessive verbing weirds language.
"If plant life does exist on a planet like Kepler-186f, its photosynthesis could have been influenced by the star's red-wavelength photons, making for a color palette that's very different than the greens on Earth."
Different palette maybe, but if the light is mostly red, that's the part of the spectrum to absorb to get most energy, so the reflected light would be blue-green. Kentucky in space, no less.
At 300 dpi the posters will print out at 39 inches high. Good enough unless you want to plaster a billboard.
There are those nice chaps in Microsoft India who keep phoning up to tell me about the viruses they've detected on my machine. OK, they get a little confused when I ask them which of my IP addresses they are referring to, and very confused when I read /var/log/messages to them when they tell me to look at my event log, but I'm sure they mean well.
That's Tim Worstall's beat, he often writes about mineral supplies. TL;DR version: if there's a demand the price will go up, causing more mines to come on stream, so the supply goes up and the price comes down a bit.
I think you might be confusing Spode's Blackshorts from PG Wodehouse's stories with Moseley's Blackshirts from a far less funny occasion.
The book that brought home just how different the mid 20th C was from today is Raymond Briggs' "Ethel and Ernest", a cartoon biography of his parents. Worth reading for perspective.
500 The Bees They're In My Eyes!
"Is that the latest kitchen surface cleaner?"
Oh yes, it will definitely clean your kitchen surfaces. Then the kitchen. Then the foundations of the kitchen. It'll be spotless.
"About half of all Japanese people for a start.
One I know turns bright red and gets completely hammered on a pint."
From experience I wouldn't put it as high as 50%, but yes some Japanese and Chinese people (actually anyone from a culture which historically purified its drinking water by boiling it with tea leaves, rather than brewing beer with it or adding fermented mashed grapes) react badly to alcohol. The problem is that although they have normal alcohol dehydrogenase, they have a less efficient form of aldehyde dehydrogenase, which handles the second step of metabolising alcohol. The result is a build up of aldehydes in the system, which causes the red flush and an evil hangover in short order.
However, getting drunk on small amounts of alcohol is mainly a cultural effect, just as other cultures get morose, look for a fight, sing or get maudlin (or all of the above). If you're a salaryman you have to treat your boss like god during work, but you then go for a drink after work and say exactly what you think of him because you're "drunk". It lets off steam, gives the bosses valuable feedback and is all done in a social environment where normal rules of politeness and deference are suspended. For a westerner trying to do business in Japan it's often the only time you'll get an honest opinion rather than the usual "Yes means maybe, maybe means no" politeness.
"Tolerance to lactose certainly opened a whole new range of foods for humans yet we don't get drunk on milk"
Yes, but we've only been dairy farmers for 5-7,000 years, which is overnight in evolutionary terms. Large chunks of the world population are still lactose intolerant as adults, including about half of Europeans over the age of 50. I know of few people who cannot tolerate alcohol biologically rather than having a cultural aversion.
Palimpsest by Charlie Stross
Indeed. Putting your firewall in the cloud - what could possibly go wrong?
I think you mean HERF (high energy radio frequency) gun. A Nerf gun would fire foam darts at the drone. Of course, that might work, depending on lightweight the drone was.
when electricity was going to be too cheap to meter, when the stock market was going to rise forever and when we'd abolished boom and bust. Oh, and when you could always trust policemen, doctors and the government.
Not a passphrase, just a wish.
if ne'er-do-wells were to flood the Adobe servers with well formed but totally bogus data? Not that any of us would condone such behaviour, of course.
The standard joke is that if you're finding your joie de vivre too much to handle, read something by Peter Watts.
Well worth reading. It's just won a Hugo as well.
Surely bastards like this should be named after a bad death metal band?
If that last phrase is not a tautology.
The article and original proposal are about TCP. UDP is a completely irrelevant red herring. UDP packets are allowed to be dropped on the floor so there's no retransmission involved and no redundancy needed.
I thought it was "goolies" that were to be cut off, not "balls"?
Last time I had one of those, I got bored with stringing them along after about 15 minutes, and pointed out we didn't have a Windows box in the house. At which point he accused me of wasting his time!
"Mother-in-laws are great at it."
Add sisters-in-law as well. I've got two, finally managed to get both on to Mac OS as it's somewhat more non-techie friendly, still get really dumb questions. Pointed remarks along the lines of "I've never used Mac OS", "Google is your friend" and "first hit on Google tells you exactly what you need" get treated as so much background noise.
"If you put the right doohicky on the side of this plant then you get the gallium out. It's at about 100ppm, 100 grammes per tonne of bauxite processed. Some 8,000 tonnes a year passes through those plants, which is useful because only a few of those BP plants have the doohickeys and globally we only use around 400 tonnes of gallium a year."
100 g/t * 8,000 t/yr = 800,000 g/yr = 800 kg/yr = 0.8 t/yr of gallium with 100% doohickeys fitted.
That's not going to cover 400t/yr. Have we lost or gained a thousand somewhere? Given that world-aluminium.org reports primary (i.e. non-recycled) Al production last month was 4,169 kt maybe that should 8,000 kt of bauxite a *month*? That would need only 5% doohickeys.
R the programming language is very good for statistics hacking, but the "for example R" link points to an article on IBM's System R which was a relational database. Both data related, but not the same thing.
Of course Plato did it first. He originally came up with the concept of a bunch of people in a cave in the 5th century BCE.
Halting State was written in 2nd person singular because it's about gaming. How did the original computer games describe what was going on?
"You are standing on a road. There is a cottage to your right. There is a fork in the road.
> Take fork.
You pick up the fork."
The sequel, Rule 34, was also in 2nd person singular, but for a different reason that also made sense when you realised why.
"It suggests though that the guy is an illiterate economist at best and therefore would never make a very good writer."
Actually Paul Krugman has praised Stross' Merchant Princes series of books as being one of the few works of fiction that actually understand economics - the whole series is founded on ideas from development economics, specifically why aid from advanced societies given to feudal ones doesn't work.
Charlie is also prone to intellectual trolling and downright flights of fancy. As an example of the latter, see his latest post on "books he won't write", which has a plot with Vladimir Putin marrying Sarah Palin and the two of them winning the US presidential election in 2016.
Who can explain how there's always one satellite out of four over Japan all the time? What orbit are these things in?
Jesus, I'll just crumble now. I'd done two degrees, been married and divorced and had set up my own startup seven years before the birth of the web.
I remember when it was all fields round here. Field 1 was columns 1-5 of the punched card and contained the statement label, field 2 was the continuation mark in column 6, ....
as several hundred Win 8 machines accidentally fall down the stairs and get broken on the way to the cells. "The different interface confused our officers, who were thus powerless to prevent these tragic accidents" said a Metropolitan Police spokesman.
some people should simply be beaten to death with a baseball bat. I've got a sick relative who has days bad enough to open one of these without thinking about it first.