27 posts • joined 8 Dec 2009
Re: Truth or consequences
I'm not a lawyer but as I understands it defamation claims are the primary risk but not the only one - e.g. various protections against discrimination/victimisation exist in employment law which could apply, as could the Protection from Harassment Act, or more unusual things like malfeasance/misfeasance and Human Rights challenges (e.g. I would have thought the right to a private life could be argued) where there is public sector involvement and so on.
Defamation claims are not something you want to be on the end of though. They are expensive (and often difficult) to defend and potentially expose you to a huge award of damages.
Look up something called the "ThinCharger" (awesome for traveling light within the UK). A UK plug-based charger doesn't need to be that big.
Re: He was lucky :-(
Voting isn't the only option you have in a democracy. You can also stand for office yourself.
Re: This molehill is dressed up as a mountain
If you'd said that 12 months ago I'd have agreed with you. However the false positive rate on gmail's spam filter suddenly jumped a LOT about 9 months ago (though false negatives are still pretty rare) - so much so that I had to work out how to disable it so I don't lose emails as messages in the spam folder get automatically deleted after 30 days (and if you fetch your email via POP3 to store locally and only rarely use the web interface as I do, it won't retrieve the spam folder so you won't even know). It wasn't just me either - several family members started missing important emails due to this at around the same time.
This was the system in the England & Wales as well before 1967 so it's not really an "American term". Felonies were originally offences for which those convicted were subject to forfeiture of land and property (really this was part of the feudal system) although this was abolished during the Victorian era. Eventually the main distinction became the rules and mode of procedure for trials which made things unnecessarily complicated so effectively felonies were abolished in 1967 and all previous felonies became misdemeanours (which were then renamed).
In the same way, some American states and the Federal government retain certain other now-obsolete aspects of the English legal system - e.g. juries for civil trials (still technically available but almost never used in England except in defamation cases), the division of civil courts between courts of Equity and courts of Law (abolished in the Victorian era but still around in some US states to greater or lesser extent, notably in Delaware) and the idea of indictments being handed down by grand juries (abolished in 30s/40s in England but actually required and not merely optional for any Federal offence in the US).
Re: Don't worry!
You obviously haven't been paying attention. What they mean when they say "if you select this option then what you say will stay private" is "... for the next 3-4 months before the next UI overhaul when we're going to reset everyone's privacy settings for the nth time to 'all public'". Based on repeated past experience, if you put it on facebook, it's best to assume anyone in the world will be able to see it at some point in the future
Re: Windows 3.x was never an Operating System
I can't believe noone has mentioned Xenix 386 - which came years before Windows 3.0 and was 32-bit... although it perhaps has a questionable claim to be a "Microsoft" product as the 386 version was produced by SCO (based on MS's earlier work which was in turn based on AT&T's code), as well as the fact that MS sold Xenix to SCO around that time (not sure if this was before or after Xenix 386 was released).
Re: 1/3 of their market value as cash
It's very easy to forget what was arguably the most revolutionary feature of the (original) iPhone - the data tariff. The hardware (and OS) as you say were the result of a longer process of evolution (and convergence between mobile devices and computers) but leveraging the expected popularity of the phone to force AT&T (and later the other networks) to offer 'unlimited' data (or at least, a lot more data for a lot less than they previously had done) was what allowed the smartphone industry to take off. An iPhone-like device on the data tariffs which existed before the iPhone would have simply been too expensive for most people to really use.
Re: And while I'm on a rant...
I think this is aimed at tourists really.
Oyster is not really that inconvenient even in pay as you go mode since you can set it up to auto top-up if you register online - whenever the balance drops below a certain level you can set it up to automatically add more credit from your credit or debit card (and that includes Amex whose NFC payment mechanism isn't mentioned in this article and doesn't appear to be very widely supported)
Also if you lose your Oyster card and it was registered, they're good enough to refund you the deposit you paid on it and transfer the funds to a new card (although it's a bit of a pain to get the refund bit since it only credits when you also buy some other new credit, ie not an auto top-up credit or a season ticket; but the funds transfer is automatic), so the only loss is the difference in the deposit for a new card if it's gone up in price in the mean time, plus (potentially) whatever someone managed to spend on it before you reported it lost/stolen.
Re: Shirley not that meme again
@NomNomNom: I'm sorry but you're wrong about what the confidence intervals represent.
If X is the "warming rate" in 2012 and Y is the "warming rate" in 1970 then what you are trying to say is that since we believe that P(a<X<b)=P(c<Y<d)=0.95, with c<b, we can reasonably conclude that P(X<Y)<0.05. This is not true; you'd need to do a different statistical test to conclude anything about the relationship between X and Y (you haven't even told us what P(X>c) or P(Y<b) are, for example). That analysis is complicated by the fact that (i) we shouldn't necessarily expect X and Y to have normal distributions and (ii) X and Y cannot be considered independent.
The data you've presented simply doesn't allow us to conclude anything about the relationship between warming rates historically and now - whether they have fallen, risen or stayed the same on any level of confidence.
Quote: "we'll end up moving to a model where there is a sales tax (on top of VAT), only the companies won't pay that, you will!"
And who do you think pays gives companies the money to pay corporation tax? They just raise their selling price to cover that the same as any other cost of doing business.
Re: TV licences aren't exactly compulsory.
(Almost) all taxes can be avoided by simply not participating in the activity which is being taxed - including income tax. That doesn't make them "not taxes" or "not compulsory" and I don't see why the licence fee is any different.
Re: The Distinction....
I think it would be more like confusing "using a car" with "using the road" (or even "inventing cars" with "inventing roads").
Re: As punishment
I find that even in modem mode, it still requires rebooting once a day otherwise it decides to randomly slow everything down (though in fairness this could be the network's fault too). Funnily enough the most noticeable symptom of this is that if I try to watch something on iplayer then it wont start for about 30 seconds as it is "buffering".
VM is really very poor at customer service, despite being more expensive than Sky. For example, they randomly and deliberately (by means of checking User-Agent and equivalent in Flash) dropped support for Linux from the "VM player" service without telling anyone. This service is already worse than the Sky equivalent since it only works on your home connection vs Sky which works anywhere. Then there's the fact that you can't get Sky Atlantic on VM. And that the price of a package without phone service is no cheaper than one with phone service (despite their product being priced to be slightly more expensive than Sky TV+BT line rental+a decent xDSL ISP). And they will offer you a "loyalty" discount if you complain, but only if you sign up for a new 24-month contract.
Re: "Once the novelty of an interchangeable lens compact has worn off"
Based on anecdotal evidence (ie friends who have bought them), I think the G-series is largely sold to people who like taking pictures and want to do it "more seriously" but are scared off buying a DSLR by the perceived "complexity" (or to some extent the cost). This is in contrast to EVIL which tends to be bought by people who would have bought a DSLR before EVIL existed but prefer the form-factor. That is a market which Canon does not serve at present.
I do agree about the S-series though. Awesome cameras - true compacts but with full exposure control and the ability to shoot RAW. The sensor size means quality will never be as good as a DSLR but then a DSLR will never be as good as medium format for the same reason - photography is always about compromises.
It's a bit cheeky calling themselves the "first British airline" to do it. For one thing, as others pointed out, planes have had phones on them for years (since the early 90s I think). For another, BA has had this tech installed for a while on their City Airport-JFK flight but disable the voice part of it so its data-only (and they don't provide Wifi data which is a bit weird). Apart from anything else there is so much background noise on a plane I can't imagine that using a phone would be particularly great anyway so seems quite sensible to me.
Agreed, recoll is awesome... indexes contents of files and can handle quite a few file types. Also does a very good job of appearing to use next to no resources. My only complaint is that it doesn't work on Windows. Combine it with "locate" in regex mode and you have a very effective search solution.
I find Everything (http://www.voidtools.com) is a good alternative to "locate" on Unix (for searching by indexed file name) but I haven't found a decent program which will index file contents yet on Windows.
1967 in England and Wales, 1973 elsewhere in the UK
I believe the confusion may be that it was repealed earlier in England and Wales than the rest of the UK. According to the 1967 Criminal Law Act it was repealed as of the passing of that act; however the section containing the repeals language did not appear to apply to Scotland or NI.
British subjects and British Citizens
We've been citizens of one sort or another since 1949, and most of us haven't been subjects at all since 1983.
See Wikipedia on this here: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/British_subject
Don't forget Drax
The biggest power station in Britain is still British-owned (well, listed on the LSE which is what people usually mean by that). As is National Grid; and (technically) British Energy, the largest generator in the UK, is 20% owned by Centrica (though I'll give you the other 80% is owned by the frogs).
And then there's the fact that we have British companies like International Power which own foreign power stations which must have some sort of "offset" effect in your measure of Britishness...
AFAICR, although his *guns* were legally held, the guy who committed the Dunblane massacre used Hollowpoint bullets which were *not* legal at the time in the UK, unless he had special permission for their use in the humane dispatch of deer or other vermin.
Easy way to avoid 3D secure
Pay using an American Express card. You can get 1.25% cashback from Amex by doing so as well. The one time my Amex card details were stolen and used for fraudulent purchases online, they were very efficient at getting me a refund and a new card too.
If a tenth of half of all passports equals 15,000 then this would imply that there are a mere 300,000 total passports in issue in the UK. I rather doubt that that figure is correct.
I thought the government was at least insisting on some basic numeracy amongst its employees these days.
Nothing more than slavish copying
From what I understand, case law varies in different countries as to whether a copyright can even exist for this type of thing - in the US, it is not possible as it is deemed to lack originality, whereas in the UK (and possibly France?), it IS possible to copyright a copy.
So one possible solution would be to amend French law to align with US case law (Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp.) on this aspect. So the French ensure that Google's scans are not copyrightable in France, and then agree some sort of partial exclusivity (maybe a right of first refusal for Google to scan books?). Result - the books are free for everyone to access as anyone can simply copy Google's version without issue, but Google still gets what they want
If a hardware DVD manufacturer signs up for a CSS/BluRay/whatever licence and *then* breaks it (e.g. by accidentally leaking the keys or making their player not region-compliant), are they then breaking the DMCA (and thus liable for criminal penalties and enhanced damages) or simply in breach of contract (thus liable for civil penalties of actual damages only)?
Seems to me like it *should* be the latter, but probably *is* the former.
UK car industry turnover
According to http://www.autoindustry.co.uk the UK car manufacturing industry had turnover in 2004 (the most recent year that they show figures for) of £49bn, and the motor trade nearly £134bn, giving a combined total of c.£183bn, and that's excluding petrol stations/fuel.
If you think prison's so great, why don't you go and commit some crime deliberately to get sent there? What, you don't want to? Maybe that's the point.
Since I find corporal punishment and other types of maltreatment almost as morally repugnant as prison itself, I can't think of an acceptable punishment I would personally hate to be subjected to more.
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