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* Posts by akicif

22 posts • joined 28 Oct 2009

That square QR barcode on the poster? Check it's not a sticker

akicif
Holmes

Re: Devil's Advocate

The profession already exists: tester

It's very foolish to let New Stuff into the wild without at least some degree of checking on potentially dodgy applications....

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Climate NON-change: No increase in droughts since 1950, say boffins

akicif

That works about as well for science as it does when American journalists (and it is, so far, almost entirely the products of American journalism schools) interview people from oppposite extremes of an argument and decide the truth has to be exactly half way between. Done badly, the journalist looks like an idiot, but done well (and more dangerously) you end up with a shifteed Overton window....

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akicif

Re: hold on a minute there bald eagle!

A degree in engineering isn't always the best qualification to follow actual science....

http://www-users.cs.york.ac.uk/susan/sf/laith.htm

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Made for each other: liquid nitrogen and 1,500 ping-pong balls

akicif
Boffin

Re: Liquid Nitrogen Safety

Probably - you *never* plug the top of a liquid nitrogen dewar. On the other hand, if you have liquid nitrogen standing around for long enough for it to turn blue, then you need to dispose of it ASAACAP: (clue, it's how Salthouse makes his liquid oxygen)....

(definitely safety glasses for this one!)

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New nuclear fuel source would power human race until 5000AD

akicif
Joke

Re: Nuclear Power

That's lawyers, surely?

"Ask a housewife how much two and two is, and without hesitation, she'll tell you it's four.

"Ask an accountant and he'll say 'I'm fairly certain, but let me run through those figures once more.'

"Ask a doctor and he'll think about malpractice, and say 'I'm fairly sure that at the very least it's three.'

"Ask a lawyer and he'll lock the doors and draw the curtains, and whisper 'How much do you want it to be?' "

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UK.gov's minimum booze price dream demolished

akicif
Pint

The problem with a minimum price is that it provides an incentive for everyone currently selling something at just over the new minimum price to raise their prices so they don't get mistaken for the cheap stuff.

And even if they didn't deliberately put their prices up in proportion, consider this scenario: a supermarket sells two brands of vodka - call them Cheipstov and Gudenov at rather below and just above the new minimum price respectively. When the minimum price comes in, the price differential drops to next to nothing. At this point, a percentage of the Cheipstov drinkers decide to try Gudenov (we can't, after all, claim that every single drinker of Cheipstov is motivated purely by maximising booze/penny). This means that there'll be less bottles of Gudenov on the shelf for the folk who usually drink it, so they'll either end up drinking the really good stuff (sorry, ran out of fake names), which will cost them more, or the increased demand for Gudenov will mean that the supermarket will put its price up too.

It's a pity that folk like BrewDog, who should know better, don't seem to get this....

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Boffins say Vodka Red Bulls make you sensible

akicif
Pint

Dose-dependency, or, pacing is all....

This may well be true for small amounts - but folk who are more awake than they expect to be later in the evening will drink more... Rinse and repeat.

The caffeinated alcohol of choice in this part of the world - Buckie, or Buckfast Tonic Wine (six cans of coke per half bottle of 15% sweetened wine) - was originally marketed to "fortify the over-forties", in the words of the Phyllosan ad, but at something like 1% of sales is responsible for more than a quarter of the alcohol-related trouble.

That said, I'm partial to the odd glass of espreso stout or Mikkeller's "Beer geek Breakfast" - but that's different!

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Olympic Security cock-up was down to that DARN software

akicif

Re: ...and LOGOC putting all their eggs in one basket

4) Having two companies competing for the same pool of stewards might have meant they'd actually have ended up offering a decent wage....

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Sainsbury's pays £1 entrance, heads into ebook club

akicif
FAIL

Pity they don't seem to have read this: http://www.forbes.com/sites/suwcharmananderson/2012/04/25/macmillans-tor-abandons-drm-other-publishers-must-follow/

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Mars rover Opportunity spots WALL-E in crater ramble

akicif
Alien

Re: time on mars

No - the am/pm FORMAT is fine - there's still a noon for the time to be before or after - it's just the value of noon or midnight that change.

For example, if the day was 28 hours long, there'd be nothing to stop you saying something happened at 14 noon precisely, or at 13.55am

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Dud Mars probe's explosion will spare Earth's cities

akicif
Mushroom

I hate to ask, but....

...."Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an Earth-shattering Kaboom!"

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Minnow Android slab maker BEATS Apple in court

akicif
WTF?

You **what**!!

"Having a premium product honestly I don't want joe unemployed to sport a clone of my iPad"

FTFAGOS!! It's a tool, not a feckin' fashion statement! Oh, wait....

Colour me naive, but I'd have thought that the more people have internet connectivity and access to information (didn't the motto of the Whole Earth catalog used to be "Access to Tools!"?), the better....

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Patent troll lawsuits may be on thin ice

akicif
Boffin

And that's not the worst of it....

For about half the lifetime of a pharmaceutical patent, the new drug isn't even saleable - it's still being tested and approved....

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'New laws not needed' to block / censor Twitter et al

akicif

The main problem's the TV news

How many copycat riots were there after the very similar triggering riot last March?

None.

This was, of course, because the tsunami, earthquake and nuclear accident in Japan did a fantastic job of keeping such trivia off the telly.

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Educating Verity the OU way

akicif
Coffee/keyboard

I saw what you did there....

"which in your case you do not have"

Oh, neatly done....

http://www.solearabiantree.net/namingofparts/parodies.html

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Cyber cops crush plod-snapper site following Millbank riot

akicif
FAIL

Miss the point, much?

The first point is that it is not current students who will be hit by the increase, but those who have yet to start. Even our current lords and masters wouldn't be able to get away with changing the cost of a course after people had already started it - so your depiction of the demonstrators as a "mindless mob" activated only by self-interest is wrong on that count at least (or do you think the right attitude is pulling the ladder up behind you with a cheery shout of "Well, I've got mine, thanks!"?)

Secondly, as you'd know if you got your news from outsideMurdoch's walled gardens, the vast majority of demonstrators had nothing whatsoever to do with the events at Millbank.

And finally, the comment quoted from the lecturers' union at Goldsmiths was by no means incitement.

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Much of recent global warming actually caused by Sun

akicif
FAIL

Oi! Lewis, learn to read!

Clearly you never read the original paper:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2010/oct/11/2

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Youth jailed for not handing over encryption password

akicif

Paging Mr Bolt...

Roper: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law!

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you — where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast — man's laws, not God's — and if you cut them down — and you're just the man to do it — d'you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake.

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Government says axing Becta will save £10m

akicif
Flame

Fools or knaves....

The people lying about BECTA, that is.

At best, they have about as much wit as the numpties who slagged off Birmingham Council for cancelling Christmas; they've heard something somewhere, and haven't actually got around to checking it - most likely because it fits in with their preconceptions. I suspect that a lot of the time people in schools have been told "BECTA say this" or "BECTA say that" when it's just the LEA or the school admin types making life easier for themselves.

For a more specific example, if any of them had bothered reading this page: http://about.becta.org.uk/display.cfm?resID=35287 they would have seen that BECTA not only didn't recommend wholesale adoption of Microsoft software, but also recommend Open Software and complained to the OFT about Microsoft's practices....

Sadly, this also makes it a lot more understandable that our current Government should scrap them.

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School IT quango to be expelled

akicif
WTF?

Illiterate eejits

It's a pity that the various people slagging off BECTA here have about as much wit as the numpties who slagged off Birmingham Council for cancelling Christmas; they've heard something somewhere, and haven't actually got around to checking it - most likely because it fits in with their preconceptions. I suspect that a lot of the time people in schools have been told "BECTA say this" or "BECTA say that" when it's just the LEA or the school admin types making life easier for themselves.

For a more specific example, if any of them had bothered reading this page: http://about.becta.org.uk/display.cfm?resID=35287 they would have seen that BECTA not only didn't recommend wholesale adoption of Microsoft software, but also recommend Open Software and complained to the OFT about Microsoft's practices....

Sadly, this also makes it a lot more understandable that our current Government should scrap them.

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Vote Lib Dem, doom humanity to extinction

akicif
WTF?

Don't vote liberal or we'll shoot your straw dog?

Oh dear. Those reasons for not voting Lib Dem would be very good reasons indeed if the LDs were in Opposition and in danger of achieving actual power on their own.

But as the very best they can hope for is to be the minor party in a coalition, and that after a certain amount of wheeling and dealing, there's no danger of one of the two big parties agreeing to those particular planks of the LD platform when it so contradicts their own.

To be honest, it all seems much of a piece with the Murdoch press's scare-mongering, designed to hand power over to Cameron's cronies: if you want a Tory Government, fine - just don't pretend that's not what you're after.

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Hands on with Acer's 3D laptop

akicif
Boffin

@Peter Gathercole

We used "flashing stereo" glasses for molecular modelling back in the eighties: the first lot of glasses were quite dangerous - lead tartrate, I think they were, and you needed lots of volts across your forehead (effectively) to get them to work.

Not long after that, we had proper LCD ones - the graphics system (an Evans & Sutherland PS300) would alternate left and right views many times a second, and in the bottom cornier of the screen was a pair of white squares that we blutacked a pair of sensors over: when the left square was lit, the right eye was shaded, and vice versa.

Net result, glorious, ghostly protein molecules tumbling in the air over the keyboard....

Glasses - obviously!

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