* Posts by Stoneshop

1630 posts • joined 8 Oct 2009

Windows XP's market share grows AGAIN!

Stoneshop
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FAIL

Until Microsoft loosened its grip on win7 install media last week

For values of 'last week' that equate to 'several years ago'. No problem downloading them from Digital River, who are an authorised MS reseller.

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BOFFINS: Oxygen-free, methane-based ALIENS may EXIST on icy SATURN moon Titan

Stoneshop
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Pint

Oxygen-free

Should be a nice environment for making the Audiophoolest Interconnects, handManipulative-Appendage-Crafted by Skilled Titanic Craftsbeings, and Pre-Cryogenically Treated for your Personal Listening Pleasure.

If that doesn't sell, I don't know what would.

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At night, scary wildlife comes out to play in the chemical factory

Stoneshop
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IT Angle

Angry Birds

This has nothing to do with IT*), but with menacing animals all the same.

One summer in college I had a job working for a geo company. Basically, these guys draw a grid on the map, then go out in the field following the grid lines, poke geophones**) into the ground, drill holes a couple of meters deep, stuff some explosives***) down those holes and make them go bang. The reflections against various underground layers get picked up by the geophones, recorded, fed into a VAX11/780 and turned into a drawing showing the underground layers. From this the geophysicists would be figuring out the best spot for drilling a larger and quite a bit deeper hole which they expected would then have oil and/or gas coming out of it.

The grid lines were to be followed as close as possible, so right through fields, shrubberies, meadows, etcetera, with some correction if things were too close to buildings, roads or underground infrastructure.

One day I was working alone, staking out the grid line in a rather rural area. As I was entering a meadow, I noticed a bunch of cows in the next field, curious as t what I was doing. Cows are OK, as far as this work went, except that they tended to knock over the stakes. Not that big of a deal, as long as I could measure the distance and continue putting stakes in at the other end. And they were in a field next to were I was anyway, which I wouldn't be crossing.. Except that the gate between them turned out to be open, and one of the cows turned out to be not a cow. Who took offence with my presence, and I decided that he could have the meadow any way he liked, provided I wasn't in it.

And then there was the peacock. Who also acted rather territorial, as they tend to do. Luckily he didn't actually attack me, as I woult then probably have had to hit it with one of the marker stakes I was holding, and quite lilkely kill it.

*) except for a trailer with a VAX11/780 in it, outside the place the crew worked out of.

**) a bit like a microphone fitted to a tent peg.

***) I had a bit of fun after getting hold of one of the empty boxes, as they had "Dynamit Nobel" and various warning texts and pictograms stencilled on.

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MELTDOWN: Samsung, Sony not-so-smart TVs go titsup for TWO days

Stoneshop
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Preferred by 9 out of 10 cats

FYI, the Germans call it 'Katzenfernseher', Cat TV

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Facebook privacy policy violates European law, says report

Stoneshop
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Devil

Re: You could just stop using Facebook...

And it will get updated with every web page you view that has a Facebook widget.

Except that on my machines those FB widgets will find themselves trying to connect to 0.0.0.0. And if that b0rks the page, then sod that.

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El Reg chefs whip up Post-Pub Noshographic

Stoneshop
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Pint

Re: The most astonishing thing about this series is ...

Slightly mangling a Winston Churchill quote: "I may be drunk, Jake, but in the morning I will be sober and you will still be fscking clueless."

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Superfish: Lenovo ditches adware, but that doesn't fix SSL megavuln – researcher

Stoneshop
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Linux

Re: Removing it

Standard version of Windows will not work.

Because it usually lacks specific drivers for the network and video cards used in the machine; I've seen that with just about any Windows version I've had to deal with. Which is solvable without having to buy another version: just add the network driver from an USB stick, tell Windows to update itself and some eleventeen billion reboots later you're left with just a few question marks in the device mangler, the drivers for which you have to scrounge from elsewhere. And anyway, you have a COA already, no need to buy a new install kit.

Or install Linux. I've had way less hassle there, if at all, over the past ten years or so compared to Windows.

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$10,000 Ethernet cable promises BONKERS MP3 audio experience

Stoneshop
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Re: So Stupid

I've already commented, though not on not commenting. Should I consider doing so?

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Stoneshop
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Re: HiFi Power cords

Actually switch-mode PSUs run a lot faster than 20kHz these days. The main reason is that the higher the frequency, the more power can be transferred through a smaller mass of (ferrite) transformer core, and then smoothed back to DC using smaller capacitors.

Power transferred is, IIRC, muble times core area times frequency, so, yes. Also, ferrite has a lower hysteresis than transformer steel, so less power loss.

In case one does want to use a SPSU for audio, 50kHz is the very minimum. Otherwise the beat frequencies between the audio signal and the switch frequency can become audible.

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Stoneshop
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Re: HiFi Power cords

Power supplies in audio equipment are Switch mode, and generally operate at 20KHz or higher.

Then why does every tuner, tape deck, disc player and amplifier that I look into have conventional transformers and smoothing caps?

Sony had a line of amplifiers that sported SPSUs, in the early 1980's. I've never seen that approach since. Especially amplifiers (except Class A) tend to have power loads that can vary A LOT, and SPSUs tend not to deal all that well with such a load.

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Dutch government websites KO'd by 10-hour DDoS

Stoneshop
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Re: I am very disappointed in this story

Here you are: http://www.gelderlander.nl/polopoly_fs/1.4271137.1417726441!/image/image.JPG_gen/derivatives/landscape_800_600/image-4271137.JPG

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Smartphones don’t dumb you down, they DUMB you UP

Stoneshop
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Coat

That depends

The flight pattern of passing swallows is too good for you, eh?

Do they carry coconuts?

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'YOUTUBE is EVIL': Somebody had a tape running, Google...

Stoneshop
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Mushroom

Re: The new man

And the parting on the left

Is now a parting on the right

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Cubans defy government's home internet ban with secret home-made network

Stoneshop
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Holmes

Re: cantenna?

Either you need to build a pair of rather conspicuously high masts (350 meter both sides, which tends to, ehm, stick out a bit) or violate the laws of physics.

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MYSTERY RADIO SIGNAL picked up from BEYOND our GALAXY

Stoneshop
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Windows

Re: Space is big, my brain just ain't

"The Sun's daily output" IS an El Reg standard unit.

2 Bulgarian Airbags, yes?

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BMW: ADMEN have asked us for YOUR connected car DATA

Stoneshop
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FAIL

Re: No need a car for that

You already carrying mobile phone which happily provides all this information and much much more.

Not all phones are smartphones, and not all smartphones blab your location data to the world's biggest advertising platform anyway.

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Hollywood vs hackers: Vulture cracks Tinseltown keyboard cornballs

Stoneshop
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Windows

Re: CSI?

"GUI Interface"

With access protection through a personal PIN number.

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No, I won't SNORKEL in your server room at STUPID-O'CLOCK

Stoneshop
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Boffin

Concrete

That's gotta be a good story (involving pneumatic drills no doubt!)

Mmmmmno. Just a few cans of some soft drink or other; concrete setting is slowed tremendously by adding sugar. It bought them enough time to get the stuff out before it wasn't out-gettable.

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Pond, rocks or quicksand in your 1km garden? Get a rugged DECT phone

Stoneshop
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Re: Separate base-station?

Or obtain a Siemens/Gigaset base station to be put outside. With the current state of DECT, compatibility is a non-issue.

I'm less sure of wolves being able to overhaul a ride-on mower, but maybe they're more ept mechanically tnan I give them credit for.

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Norks' internet goes TITSUP in possible DDoS attack

Stoneshop
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Headmaster

Re: Missing statement from article

All 4 computers are no longer able to connect to the Internet.

"The internet is unable to connect to our four glorious computers anymore."

("Fog in Channel, continent isolated")

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

Stoneshop
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Go

Overall, my experience of OS/390 is that it is a rock solid basis for a system. I remember a power outage that took out all the DASD. OS/390 sat there bleeping that it couldn't access disks, but otherwise stayed up and restarted itself once the DASD were IML'd back online.

I'm reminded of a situation where some cable-laying monkey had removed an entire single row of floor tiles behind one of those washing machine-like disk drives. So, after a vigorous bit of seeking, the legs underneath the drive inevitably started diverging from the vertical, and the drive decided to take a plunge into the chasm.

After undoing this mishap (I'm unaware if the cable monkey was made part of the solution) and spinning the drive back up, VMS merely reported "Drive improperly dismounted".

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Judge spanks SCO in ancient ownership of Unix lawsuit

Stoneshop
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Facepalm

Re: TSG is not SCO

Now who gets the award for idiocy:

SCOG. They went from repeatedly shooting themselves in the foot to machinegunning their knees with gay abandon after there was nothing substantial left in the pedal department. Only lack of funds to obtain ammo withheld them from operating their groin-pointing Gatling

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'Turn to nuclear power to save planetary ecology from renewable BLIGHT'

Stoneshop
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Re: Dunno about warming

hydrogen fuel cells

There's also the option of building various hydrocarbons (for which we already have the distribution infrastructure) out of carbon dioxide, hydrogen and energy.

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REVEALED: Titsup flight plan mainframe borks UK air traffic control

Stoneshop
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Black Helicopters

Re: User submissions need pre-check

I want a flying shark,

The guys who built Orville the CatCopter are working on one (sorry, I don't have pics available)

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How HAPPY am I on a scale of 1 to 10? Where do I click PISSED OFF?

Stoneshop
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Holmes

Re: Such surveys are invented by marketards.

Glad to hear you find your parent's basement so safe and comfortable.

It's Jake. He's built his own jetliner, which he's flying himself everywhere he needs to go.

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Go festive this year with Christmas carols, baby Jesus and CLITORAL STIMULATORS

Stoneshop
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Boffin

Re: A bit rich...

I found that the snag with a Teasmade is that part of the process involves having a small jug of milk sitting next to it.

This is the only worthwhile application for those soft-drink-can sized peltier refrigerators.

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Stoneshop
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Holmes

Re: A bit rich...

Ever since encountering a Teasmade (or Teasmaid ?) and a cheap pair of binoculars with a transistor radio built in, I have been less than convinced of the convenience of combi-products and similar technology.

Well, a lot of combined products indeed do their best to combine the worst aspects of their constituent parts, but not so the Teasmade. It allows one to be woken gently by the chirping sounds of its gears, not unlike bird twitter, some time before it's set to start brewing tea. This is so you can fully enjoy the auditory and olfactory aspects of that process, and allow yourself more time to change from sleeping mode to ready-to-ingest-tea mode.

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Einstürzende Neubauten's haunting World War I tribute

Stoneshop
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Mushroom

Compressed air

“We must have the only recording studio with a compressed air supply,”

At Robodock in Amsterdam, several years back, there was a "band" which consisted of IIRC two dozen or so instruments, powered by compressed air. These were wind instruments as well as pneumatically driven strings and percussion. The ensemble was controlled by something akin a music box, using a slow-turning lathe. Sound-wise, it gave Einstuerzende Neubauten a run for their money.

Compressorhead's drummer was at Robodock too, although I didn't see him in action.

Icon is for the Large Hot Pipe Organ, also present.

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HP boss Meg Whitman shuffles exec pawns just before biz splits

Stoneshop
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Facepalm

Speeling error

Should be HP Ink.

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Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years

Stoneshop
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Re: Cool

Any designs up on Thingiverse yet?

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Stoneshop
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Re: Cars...

Motorcycles don't steer by leaning

There's a negation missing in that statement.

How easy and effective steering by leaning is depends on the bike geometry and the tyre size. Superbikes tend to be at the "needs extreme input" end of the scale, on a light offroad it's peanuts.

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Bang! You're dead. Who gets your email, iTunes and Facebook?

Stoneshop
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Coat

Re: "Most tech firms running online services have remarkably little time for the dying or deceased."

and you're not going to be looking at any more ads on Facebook.

No need to die for that; just install Adblock

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You really need to do some tech support for Aunty Agnes

Stoneshop
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I think the safest way to surf the net is an unpatched, unprotected Windows 3.x OS/2 machine.

Ran one, unprotected, well past its expiry date; never had a problem.

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Could YOU identify these 10 cool vintage mobile phones?

Stoneshop
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SH888

Had one, together with the 5MX mentioned in the article. Sending mails while on the move, back in 1998.

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MOULDY DICK: France aims to snatch EXPLODING WHALE crown from U.S.

Stoneshop
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Mushroom

Re: I really hope they use dynamite..

So, has El Reg's Standards Soviet already determined the explosive force of a decomposing whale, and expressed it in Pepcons and/or Mythbusters Cement Mixer Trucks?

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ESA sends back PRE-LANDING COMET CLOSE-UPS

Stoneshop
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WTF?

Someone's been there before

and drawn the outline of Australia in the dirt (second pic)

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FUTURE ROBOTS will EXTERMINATE UK jobs – study

Stoneshop
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Re: What will replace the robots

And, erm, "robot" derives from "robotnik", the Polish word for "worker"...

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Race is on to touch down on COMET 67P before WHIFFY SPACE DUCK breaks up

Stoneshop
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Re: It would be embarrassing

Is there a convention for numbering the resulting parts?

"It appears Philae is dangling from 67P-LXVII"

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Official: Turing's Bombe BETTER than a Concorde plane

Stoneshop
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Re: I can't think of Alan Turing without thinking of the radio series Hut 33!

Have you tried turning it off and on again Alan?

"The engineers who came to install it and switched it on, told me not to switch it off until after the war."

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Linux systemd dev says open source is 'SICK', kernel community 'awful'

Stoneshop
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@Andy Prough Re: Hostile leadership vs hostile software

When you're installing Gnome, you only get what you deserve.

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Stoneshop
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WTF?

Re: Bias

And he's playing this card because he, a white, middle-aged male, is feeling unjustly harrassed?

It may be a problem in the Linux communities, but it's not the problem he is confronted with.

Just stop writing bloated, buggy, boundary-violating code and maybe you won't have as many adversaries.

Better yet, stop writing code. Period.

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Meg Whitman: The lady IS for TURNING. HP to lob printers'n'PCs OVERBOARD

Stoneshop
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Re: A pondering...

With the split of eBay/Paypal we are well into the downward swing of the cycle.

And another one: the company that used to be referred to as "a large lightbulb manufacturer in the south of the Netherlands" is going to be two not all that large manufacturers, neither of which makes lightbulbs (or even its current equivalent: LED bulbs) anymore.

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Stoneshop
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Flame

Re: "But if almost no-one has an HP tablet"

Make one call

to India. And another one. And another one. And another one. And another one.

and everything IT is good and done.

Not been using their "Enterprise" services much, have you?

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Stoneshop
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FAIL

Re: All aboard the redundancy train...again

In the short term it should create jobs rather than make staff redundant.

This split is expected to create -55k jobs.

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What’s the KEYBOARD SHORTCUT for Delete?! Look in a contextual menu, fool!

Stoneshop
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Facepalm

Re: Mechanical typewriters

I've had someone, who apparently had never used a keyboard before, ask why the key arrangement wasn't simply "ABCDEetc".

In 1991.

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Stoneshop
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Devil

Re: Your shortcut gems?

I think a knowledge of short cut keys is on the decline but may be replaced with voice commands.

So we'll see, for instance, a lot of files, macros, command aliases etcetera, called [redacted expletive].

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Stoneshop
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Re: Text editting

You missed out 110 and - my favourite - 134.5 baud.

We've got a PDP8/f that's got its serial interface modified for 110 baud, by having a different crystal fitted, for use with an ASR33.

And if you have ever looked under the hood of an ASR33, you'll know why it can't do any speed but 110: its serialiser/deserialiser is a contactor disc driven by a synchronous motor.

Typically asynch terminals would do either hardware (X-on/X-off) or software (Control-S, Control-Q) flow controls.

Err, Xon/Xoff (Ctrl-S/Ctrl-Q) is software flow control. Hardware flow control requires at least RTS/CTS or DSR/DTR to be wired as well as Tx/Rx and Gnd,

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Stoneshop
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Devil

Re: It's the IT sixth sense

So the tab key is a couple of right-facing arrows

On my Cherry 3000, the tab key has left- and right-pointing arrows as well as the word "Tab". Backspace and shift also bear text as well as the somewhat appropriate arrows.

I'm not sure about the Model M, but those are only used by True Aficionados who know what each key means (even though they've probably remapped it), why it's called that and its keyscan code. Mere punters don't use them, especially since they don't have flag and menu keys, so explanatory text (which they won't read anyway) is irrelevant..

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Stoneshop
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Go

Re: Keyboard commands for select, copy, paste and find

"I've drunk a lot of free coffee and gained a (totally undeserved) reputation as a clever chap from showing people CTRL-A, CTRL-C click in the other windowAlt-TAB, CTRL-V."

FTFY

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Report: HP to SPLIT OFF PC, printer biz from enterprise wing

Stoneshop
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Facepalm

Re: Bound to be a success

Which will get the "Hewlett" name,

Keysight.

and which the "Packard" name?

Keysight

The new parts will have to fight over the names "Hopeless" and "Panic"

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