* Posts by Ugotta B. Kiddingme

663 posts • joined 23 Dec 2009

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Australian astroboffins reveal hundreds of hidden galaxies

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: 300 newly-spotted galaxies

they went from spotted to plaid.

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You, FCC. Do something about these overpriced cable boxes, yells Bernie Sanders and pals

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: "Why... do you put their Party and State after their names?"

because if you just say "Senator Dickhead," no one is quite certain WHICH Senator Dickhead you mean...

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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mixed bag

The senators have got it both right and wrong.

On the one hand, the "lock in" is a bit of a red herring. Alternatives exist and, for some like Roku or Chromecast, they aren't particularly expensive. I've already stated that Tivos have a significant up front cost and that is an obstacle to some folks - I get that. I also get that many consumers don't understand about non-traditional options like Roku/Chromecast/AppleTV/etc, but to say that you are "locked in" to only getting a rental box from the provider is disingenuous. Facts never got in the way of a blathering politician before, so nothing new I suppose.

On the OTHER hand, going after the providers for shady or outright illegal billing practices (charging for equipment after its return or without having first DELIVERED it, etc) is definitely welcome news and I wish them much success with that.

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: cable card

Cox cable charges me $3/month rent for each of my two cable cards. Granted that's much better for me and worse for them than $10-$20/month for their DVR box, but it's still revenue.

I've owned Tivos for many years. Tivos are the gold standard of "bring your own" set top boxes. The interface and menu system are far superior to any other box I've personally seen. The drawback is the comparatively high up front cost ($400-$800, depending upon model and options), but you only pay that once. By my maths, at current Cox rental rates I "paid off" my Tivos about five years ago and just have the cable card rental fee.

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Cruz missile slams into DNS overlord ICANN over Chinese censorship

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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sigh...

Ignoring, for the moment, that Cruz is probably (accidentally?) correct on this: It has been said* "people get the government they deserve." Given the front runners in both main political parties, I wonder what horrific sins we as a nation** have done to deserve this group of... Oh, wait. Erm, never mind. Carry on.

* variously attributed to Alexis de Tocqueville, Joseph de Maistre, H.L. Mencken, Thomas Jefferson, etc.

** as a nation. As a collective of individuals, we definitely do NOT deserve this shit.

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Berkeley boffins build cut-price robo-crutches, er, sci-fi exoskeleton

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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top shelf boffinry

quite literally giving some folks a leg up. Well done.

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For sale: One 236-bed nuclear bunker

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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how much extra

for the optional faux volcano covering? After all, when one is transitioning to a new lair, one must still maintain expected standards of appearance with respect to "natural and/or geological detail"...

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El Reg nips down to the Hewlett You Inn?

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Glad to see they were reasonably good sports about it

And thank you for starting the work week on an amusing note.

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I love you. I will kill you! I want to make love to you: The evolution of AI in pop culture

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: "AI becomes replica of son"

simply titled A.I. Artificial Intelligence and mentioned briefly in the article. Excellent movie, BTW. I highly recommend. Same notation for Ex Machina.

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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thanks for the pointers

I somehow missed hearing about Automata and Ghost in the Shell. Will have to check these out.

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'Printer Ready'. Er… you actually want to print? What, right now?

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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The solution is so simple

The user forgot to set Thip Crinkle and Spoit to 'No'

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Senate marks Data Privacy Day with passage of critical bill for Safe Harbor

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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"legislation that will extend US privacy rights to Europeans."

<guffaws> Go on, then. Pull the other one! </guffaws>

Seriously (gasping for air), that's pretty funny. I remember privacy. Seem to recall having it once, myself, long ago. Truth is, that which calls itself my government has amply demonstrated a complete and total disregard for privacy AND the rule of law. This "legislation" will change nothing. I'm also betting that you lot on The Old World won't fall for it any more than we do...

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Death to clunky, creaky rip-off cable boxes – here's how it will happen

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Interesting

"The only difference in the US being that baseline channels, for historical reasons, are sent in analog in the clear, meaning cable-ready analog TVs didn't need the box at all."

In my area, that changes next month. To free up bandwidth, Cox is removing the analog channels (2-70) AND encrypting/scrambling them - not just xmitting digitally - so that even new digital TVs must have a small box from them (or your own plus their cable card) to receive anything. They graciously provide the mini-box free for the first year of course. After that it's $4/month/box. Since I have Tivos with cable cards, it doesn't affect me but for my elderly mother who just watches "basic" cable, it will be a $12/month increase next year when the "free" boxes are no longer free...

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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thankfully not new for me

I've owned my own Tivos for many years. Cox Communications in my area allows the use of "alternative" boxes and rents the multi-stream decoder card required to decrypt/descramble the channels for $3/month. The downside of Tivo is a high up-front cost (about USD$700 including lifetime activation) but I own it. Yes, to some, the box from the cable company SEEMS cheaper at about $15/month, but consider that my Tivos are NINE YEARS OLD (and still functioning very well, thank you). Do that math and I came out ahead a long time back.

I'll be upgrading to newer models soon but have certainly gotten my money's worth out of the existing boxes. The only thing I don't like about the newer Tivos is that you must CHOOSE between OTA or cable - they are different models now. My old Series3 Tivos can do both simultaneously.

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Fretful Amazon wishes it could get more Android action

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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it WOULD be nice

to be able to easily get my Amazon apps loaded onto my Android phone without having to check/uncheck the "allow from unknown sources" box. Amazon regularly gives away pay apps, a few of which are actually worth having. I understand why this doesn't happen but with the recent addition of app permission management, it would be pretty easy to allow the user to designate "known sources" to trust for installs.

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Squeeze the banana to log into this office Wi-Fi

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Coffee/keyboard

I read the sub-headline

whilst enjoying a post-lunch coffee. Please advise where I should send the bill for replacement monitor, keyboard, shirt, and a nearby co-worker.

Props for the clever solution to a problem but, one is forced to wonder if the device is indeed cellular, modular, AND interactivodular.

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Virginia man charged in intriguing 'suspicious bacon' case

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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@ Pirate Dave

That which our "old country" cousins call bacon more closely resembles what we former colonials would call ham and comes from a completely different porcine region*. Both are quite delectable, but distinctly different. Personally, I disagree with your assertion that "if you can chew it, it isn't done yet." My wife likes her bacon that way - WELL done bordering on charred. I leave mine a bit chewy with just a little bit of "crispy." All a matter of preference, really.

* shoulder, if memory serves, whereas American bacon is from the pork belly.

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Felony wearing of a mask in Public?

I can think of a few folks (myself included) who could probably be charged with "felony NOT wearing a mask in public," thereby endangering the visual acuity of the general populace.

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Space podule outfit inks Arizona launch deal

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Unhappy

"the world's first purpose-built stratospheric ballooning facility"

well, sure. They are first NOW... And they don't even have an autonomous ballocket.

Thanks, FAA. [/sarcasm]

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Optimus Prime goes under the hammer

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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the auction contains several WAY more interesting vehicles

such as a 1965 Shelby Cobra Roadster, 1968 Chevrolet Camaro convertible, 1970 Plymouth Barracuda Custom Coupe, 1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1 fastback and, perhaps the most beautiful of them all, a 1961 Jaguar XKE. Any of these would be infinitely more preferable (to me, at least) than a giant truck/tractor/whatthefuckever or something with Michael Bay's autograph...

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Comcast repeatedly crams modem upgrade demands into browsers

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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my cousin got one of those calls

my BLIND cousin. Who is NOT a Comcrap customer. Having previously done telephone sales, he takes great delight in leading telemarketers of all stripes merrily down any of several meandering paths. IIRC, his personal best is 27 minutes with one of the "Microsoft support" scammers.

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Engineer's bosses gave him printout of his Yahoo IMs. Euro court says it's OK

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: I put on my robe and wizard hat

fiancee responds: And I whisper, "Ooh, Merlin. Show me your magic wand..."

Alternatively: "Is that a magic wand in your robe or are you just happy to see me?"

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Lights out! Newbie IT manager's dark basement trip

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Mushroom

"the threats we'd made about the PBX guy's testicles"

so one may presume these were pre-Register days, therefore no handy and creative suggestions via Tales of the BOFH...

(nuke because we have no cattle-prod-induced electrocution icon)

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Cocky SpaceX will try another sea landing with next rocket launch

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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a clever strategy to one-up several Bond villains simultaneously

Musk is secretly preparing his submersible AND movable volcanic lair. The barges are "proof of concept" for future plans involving a largish Persian cat and maniacal laughter.

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Chinese unleash autonomous airborne taxi

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Idiot-proof interface?

indeed. Someone is vastly underestimating the capabilities of idiots.

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TV streaming stick brings the movies and the network backdoors

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Raspberry pi

get_iPlayer seems to be pretty specific to the BBC. Any suggestions for those of us on the left side of the pond?

I've looked at some of these "computing sticks" and darn near bought one several times. These do a couple things my Roku can't, but not enough extra to justify even the cost of a cheap Android version.

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Curiosity Rover eyes Mars' creeping dunes

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Thank you, ratfox

That was every bit as cool as I thought it would be - had no idea about the "moaning" of the sands. Now we just need to politely ask Sir David to narrate a similar NASA vid of the Martian dunes.

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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any chance

of a time-lapse video of that dune action? I bet it's fascinating to watch.

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Look what Gbps fiber brings: Competition, then new router chips

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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spiffy!

and now that Gbps-over-existing-copper-coax has been successfully tested, this should find salivating customers fairly quickly

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SpaceX makes rocket science look easy: Falcon 9 passes tests

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Go

would be thrilled to see

all three segments of a Falcon 9 Heavy land in formation. Now THAT would be cool!

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Death Stars are a waste of time – here's the best way to take over the galaxy

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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if you can harness that kind of energy

then why not use a Gamma Ray Burst? GRBs still have planet killing power many light years away.

For movie purposes, the CGI effect would be less spectacular than blasting a planet into zillions of small pieces but could still be very dramatic and considerably more realistic

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Periodic table enjoys elemental engorgement

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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DentArthurDentium

because it's easier to pronounce and rolls from the tongue better than Slartibartfastium

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El Reg picked a pack of ace pic-titlers

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Betty expresses delight at her new cordless monitor's ability to painlessly remove unwanted underarm hair.

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T'was the night before Christmas, and an industrial control system needed an upgrade

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: @ Stevie - copy editor already on holiday?

You are, of course, correct.

Withdrawn and submitted appropriately.

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Physics uses warp theory to look beyond relativity

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Joke

Re: "Just because sodium fizzes under water here doesn't mean it won't sprout flowers in space"

so the bowl of Petunias was a transformation of sodium? Fascinating theory. What then, according to this theory, became the whale?

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Old jet bits, Vader's motorbike gear, sonic oddness: Hats off to Star Wars' creative heroes

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Sloppy research El Reg @Dan 55

In the absence of "Revenge of the Phantom" [ep 3], which would be about seventeen minutes long, I humbly submit this.

It's a script rather than actual video and contains much NSFW language, but is quite an amusing read.

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How to build a real lightsabre

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: Plasma?

"But it would need serious trickery to create a strong, shaped magnetic field from something the size and shape of a light-sabre handle."

A(n equally hypothetical) magnetic monopole, perhaps?

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ISS 'naut trio return to snowy terra firma

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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glitch in the Matrix

pay no attention to - hey, look over there!

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Welcome home, gents!

glad you made it back safely

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International Space Station braces for pre-Christmas rush

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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the worst part is that many of us on here don't even need to click the link. We can recite the lyrics [quite painfully] by heart...

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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well played

Have an upvote, while I make a mental note to add Deep Purple to this afternoon's rotation

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Hacked Japanese space probe sends back first pictures of Venus

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Joke

Re: @ EastFinchleyite- periapsis, apoapsis muddle....

'Shouldn't "Venusian" be something else, such as "Veneran" or "Venerean" or even "Venereal"?'

No, because Venereal Lemonade tastes completely different...

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Joke

Re: Naming "something meaning 'dusk' instead..."

or "sorry I'm late, you wouldn't BELIEVE what I had to go through just to get here"

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Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: @ EastFinchleyite- periapsis, apoapsis muddle....

Actually, I think it does matter a bit. For example, prior to this article, I was blissfully unaware that "apogee/perigee" was specific only to Earth. I knew that "helion" was for solar orbits but thought "gee" was for all others. I am now corrected and even more educated on the terminology thanks to your further detail.

This, plus the clever and patient boffinry to turn the lemons into Venusian lemonade? Much win.

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Motorola’s X Force awakens a seemingly ‘shatterproof’ future

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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@JetSetJim et al. - Yes, it DOES have an SD slot

Direct from the horse's mouth, albeit in Portuguese... According to this, you can put up to a 2TB µSD

For those of us who don't read Portuguese, there's this, although they seem to have missed a zero on the µSD spec.

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Kill Flash Now: 78 bugs patched in latest update

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Sigh...

Why are we STILL having this conversation? I mean, really... Can't someone just put it out of our misery once and for all?

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Is ATM security threatened by Windows XP support cutoff? Well, yes, but …

Ugotta B. Kiddingme
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Re: How to tell

I live in an area prone to hurricanes and other power-interrupting weather events. On two occasions, I happened to be been near an ATM when the power came back on. One of those was a "through the wall at a bank" device and the other a "freestanding in a convenience store/chemist's" type. The bank device gave no clue as to operating system but the freestanding one very briefly showed the familiar XP logo.

I don't know what the rules are on your side of the pond but, here in Yankville, freestanding ATMs often charge exhorbitant fees on top of any transaction fees imposed by your bank. My personal policy is to never trust these since A) you never know who's been able to poke around the device and B) I'm too cheap to pay the extra fee unless I'm in absolute dire straits for cash. Given that I've never seen a USB port or hatch leading to one on a "through the wall" bank ATM, I believe these less likely to be compromised or even ABLE to be compromised in any manner that could be described as easy. I could, of course, be very wrong...

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Japanese hack gets space probe back on track

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Pint

Well done!

Sapporos and/or Asahis all round

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