1497 posts • joined 5 Mar 2010
Re: The only thing I got from this is that parts of Philadelphia
When "The Wire" came on, I had to double check that the flats where D'Angelo held court (with that sofa incongruously sitting outside) weren't the flats I first lived in when I moved to Birmingham.
And the streets of Baltimore are a dead ringer for a part of Manchester (Santiago Street IIRC) where my brother stayed for a year, when he was at Uni ....
Based on reality
Over much arguing, the only phone I will provide for my 17 year old is an old Nokia 5800. My reasoning being he is a fucking kid, and (a) never looks after anything (even stuff he's paid for) and (b) never ever listens to adult advice (such as not to wave your phone out every 5 minutes).
A couple of months ago he was walking through a local park when a couple of hooded youths stopped him, asked the time (I mean really !?) and then demanded his phone. As soon as they saw what is was they went "no man, dat's a sick phone, we don't want none of your Nokia shit man!" and fucked off. To (according to the policeman who took his statement) mug someone else for their Blackberry a few minutes later.
Much to lads chagrin, policeman praised my attitude in ensuring lad didn't have a mug-magnet phone.
This is what lad claimed they said. I guess people really do talk like that. Innit ?
Now watch how politics works ....
The pie is shrinking, so there needs to be rationing. I can't see any government risking domestic power cuts except as a measure of absolute last resort. Also I see a media battle between the government (who will try and persuade people that it's all the fault of the power companies) and the power companies (who will blame the government, the EU and "the market").
Bad move for the government, unless they decide to wade in with chequebook and legislation - the power companies will have dictated the contractual landscape, and made sure it's industry that goes offline first. Factories, big office complexes (and hopefully a few government departments ;) ). At which point (those of us who remember the 3 day week) you will start seeing the lay offs.
And that's the price you pay for not educating the population properly AT SCHOOL so they had enough grasp of science to debate nuclear power rationally. Still, maybe if we burn a few media studies graduates, we can keep some lights on.
I grew up in the 70s, and recall getting home from school, and lighting the candles for when my Mum got home from collecting brother from playschool. Giving thanks for a gas cooker (a preference I have never lost) and for my Dads inna te distrust of electricity (he was born in Southern Italy, where power cuts are a way of life) which meant he insisted on gas central heating. Being a real engineer, he rigged it up to run off a car battery, so it could run without mains.
No power cuts in the 80s, no power cuts in the 90s, but in the past 4 years we have had at least 3 outages of over an hour. My suspicion is lack of capacity makes it harder to route around stolen cables.
Funny how no one understands basic economics
The less you have of something, the more it costs. It really is that simple.
Re: European acronym soup
"Spitting Image" did a good explanation of the whackiness of the European arrangement back in the 80s ..
Could it be ..
companies are holding back investing until they know the score on independence ?
The problem is
"terrorist" like "criminal", is whatever people want it to mean.
And there's the rub.
And we have a long and glorious list of examples of powers being given to the state "for extreme instances" only to discover them being abused*. Take the councils who used RIPA to investigate that heinous crime of putting bins out on the wrong day.
*Why does a dog lick it's bollocks ? Because it can. Same logic with abusing powers.
Re: El Reg is getting worse....
Apples and oranges.
The automotive market is completely mature. Any technological developments are going to be evolutionary, and as such the consumer base is well known.
Telecoms - particularly *mobile* telecoms is still an emerging industry, and as such likely to see revolutions in technology. This makes it a far more volatile market.
One possibility - and certainly a threat for Apple - is that a new revolutionary development is made, which can only work between two newer handsets. All of a sudden the lack of buying power for the new iPhone becomes an issue, as it prevents you from plugging your new technology.
Re: just as these tills are driving us mad.......
I doubt it will bankrupt the supermarkets. They calculate very carefully how much "shrinkage" they can bear.
After all you could achieve 0% shrinkage if you put all the goods behind a counter and customers had to ask for them. You know, like in the 50s ? But that costs waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much in staff. And also doesn't give you an arena to tempt customers to buy something on impulse.
Supermarkets have long ago figured the price of profit is a little shrinkage.
Re: A watched a TV program where...
Slightly related, but we bought the FiL a bottle of premium whisky for Xmas a couple of years ago. One that comes in an aluminium lined presentation cylinder. Wrapped it up without checking it inside.
Come Xmas day, opens pressie, takes out bottle, it still had the anti theft tag on. It dawned on me that some genius in the BWS section hadn't worked out that putting the radio-transmitters in a Faraday cage *might* just stop it working.
I wonder how many shoplifters hit that store ?
I did email head office like a good citizen.
Re: Easy solution...
+1 for online shopping. But then MrsPage uses a wheelchair, so shopping is already a chore.
Tesco ran (are running) an offer where you pay £10/month (IIRC) and you get as many deliveries over £40 as you want Tue-Thu. Which kinda cancels out delivery charges if you play it right.
Also there is an option to say "don't substitute" you can set if you like. Although IME it's no problem to reject a substitution on the doorstep if you like.
For me, the next step forwards should be supermarkets targeting households that are geographically clustered, and try and see if they can arrange a "neighbourhood drop" system. Free delivery for 10 households in the same road. I say this, as every day in my little cul de sac *someone* has a delivery from Tesco. Given the cost of fuel, if they could combine those into a single journey ...
Also the supermarkets could hook up with Amazon* and eBay* and offer to deliver stuff with the online groceries.
*Other online retailers are available
People are starting to realise
You can have the lights on, or the polar bears.
Re: Nothing will make airships viable.
Bit "nobody needs more than 640K" of you there ?
"Namely that existing material strengths are simply inadequate to deploy lightweight large structures, and that's what you need for serious lifting capabilities."
Who knows what lies ahead ?
Perhaps there's a sense that TV
is changing. We no longer have "shows". We have "products" of which only a small proportion is the actual airtime of the TV element. We then have "exclusive online content". Plus media tie-ins with "Hello", "OK !", "Take a Break", and even the "Radio Times" printing "stories" from the show. Then you have the official FB pages, and Twitter feeds - cunningly balanced with the official "unofficial" FB pages and Twitter feeds. All of this hot air generates enough media energy it becomes a self-sustaining reaction with other non-affiliated media sources having to report on the "news" that is the product.
Britains Got Talent
Call the Midwife
Dancing on Ice
Strictly Come Dancing
plus the regular soaps. "Corrie", Eastenders, Emmerdale ...
However, my TiVo
also has a "like" AND "dislike" functionality. The idea being you can "train" it, so it can record "suggestions". Programmes it thinks you might like.
So Virgin Media already had a scoop on what *it's* punters do and don't like. And given the "dislike" feature, it's probably more valuable to TV execs than FBs rather late entry to the party.
Clearly spoiled on the Chiltern line
Free WiFi in all trains, and 240V power points for charging phones.
It was only meeting a colleague recently who has to travel Swindon->London that I realised this is uncommon ....
e2a:Just read another posters comment. Yes WiFi can be temperamental, but it's still better than nothing.
Why you don't want spies spying on *your* side
Should be obvious really ... do you seriously see a politician saying to the spooks "Rummage around all you want in our dirty laundry" ?
Remember there were very serious allegations that the spooks spied on Wilsons government in the 60s. Who knows what juicy "leverage" they gained over MPs ...
Re: I'm Shocked
Sorry, I have to call you out on "No one complains" ... a lot of people have complained. Even here, on El Reg. So please don't make sweeping statements like that.
I would sign up
but my Cameron filter won't let me ...
Re: Censorship enthusiasts
Because the media space has already been filled with an atmosphere of "if you object you must have some sinister agenda" usually in the same breath as "paedophile", or "terrorist" depending on the sound of your name, and colour of your skin.
The only place you'll get a libertarian view is more off-grid ... blogs, twitter, Facebook ... that is all the places the government want's to bring under it's control.
Re: Dunno what MP's are...
MP = Member of Parliament - elected representatives to our lower house, equivalent to your congress.
Re: An idea from an ignorant American
Actually, I suspect this is what 95% of our MPs genuinely think is possible.
You know the old joke about a jury being made of 12 people too stupid to avoid jury duty ? Well the matching political axiom is that parliament is made up of people too stupid to do real work.
I suspect a 3 question grilling would reveal that the majority of MPs struggle with the distinction between Google search results and the fact that they aren't hosted by google ... do you remember when you were learning about computers, and had to distinguish between A and (A) ??????
Oranges are not the only fruit
and Google are not the only search engine. Although I'd be quite happy if our elected representatives believed they were.
What about Yahoo! ? Bing ? Not sure if Magellan or Altavista still exist, but this could be a great incentive for their revival.
Or - heaven forfend - what if a bunch of people donated some CPU time to a crowdsourced search engine with a distributed database. Try and shut *that* down ....
Is a bad or a good thing ...
that kids today (anyone under the age of 30) just won't fully appreciate the tension of the 70s and 80s. I was 14 in 1980, and recall me and my friends (all fairly geeky) were convinced it was a question of "if" not "when" the 4-minute warning would come.
"Protect and Survive" was considered essential reading.
Obvious use ...
work out when the owners mobile is approaching home, and have heating fired up when they're 20 minutes away ?
Could also turn on driveway lights ? And the oven ?
Just a thought.
DAB. Don't want it. Don't need it.
FM does me just fine. Anyway the only radio worth listening to is Radio 4. Sometimes.
Looks like US lawmakers are as clueless as UK ones ...
I can see a rainmaker case over the definition of "registered user" ... there are a few sites where you can upload content without "registering".
I noticed this years ago ...
Facebook has now built up a very detailed picture of people who *aren't* on Facebook, simply by dint of cross-referencing the address books of everyone who *is* on Facebook.
Since there's fuck all I can do about it, it's just ticking over at 1/10 on the worry-o-meter, but it's interesting to speculate what they can do with this information. The most straightforward being to serve up a list of social-networking refuseniks to any future administration who decide that people who aren't on Facebook have something to hide. But it could go way deeper than that.
I am very confused ...
When I first signed up for my hotmail account (back in 1995), it was made crystal clear to me in the T&Cs (as I recall them) that under no circumstances was I to share my password with anyone.
So what has changed that people are now allowed to give their precious login details to these sites ?
Does anyone recall that story from a few years back where a guy was jailed because he signed up to Facebook, gave FB his hotmail login, and FB proceeded to spam his address book including his ex-wife who had an injunction against him. Judge was unimpressed with his claims of innocence and basically said "you're a dick for giving your hotmail password to Facebook" ?
Re: "HAL bug"
IIRC the reason HAL erroneously predicted a failure of the AE35 unit was because it was a reflection of his subconscious realisation that the source of his conflict was coming from Earth. It was a manifestation of his desire to break with Earth and remove that conflict.
How on earth did the KVM traffic get through the properly configured firewall the bank must have ?
Is that Spain
or Mars ?
those images stored in proprietary systems, as I discovered when I asked for a copy.
Re: Data Centres?
It's the power that will be the killer. AFAIAA "Scotland" is wedded to the idea of subsidised (by the English) renewables. Presumably they're hoping that 2/2 will become a new paradigm in international business ?
Not sure ... things have a habit of going in circles ...
vaguely musing with MrsJP a few days ago that there's a certain symmetry in people today choosing to go to a coffee shop because they can also access the lastest news via wifi.
Seems remarkably similar to 200 years ago where you went to the coffee shop to access the latest news (via newspaper).
Is windows available in Urdu, Paschto, and Punjabi?
One thing I know for sure about MS is they are very hot on localisation ... I know this after having to install a South Korean version of windows (from the MSDN) to flush out a bug we could not get to happen here. IIRC it was to do with Unicode and 4-byte character codes.
A fascinating insight into other cultures ...
Can anyone see Birmingham City Council dishing out Linux Distros to it's XP citizenry ?
Just weird ....
Re: Almost an interesting article
the problem is it's a fine line between forewarning the innocent, and aiding the guilty.
Many years ago when I worked at a large supermarket, we were warned in quite some detail of a shoplifting scam. A few weeks later a relative of one of the managers was caught in a rival supermarket trying the exact same scam ...
What's that US saying ?
"A day late, and a dollar short".
You might have pulled a stunt off like this 10 years ago. But nowadays, with a proliferation of millions of people sending each other links every second of the day, I suspect most "on" filters will get turned "off" within 24 hours, as people start wanting to access the links their friends can see.
Out of curiosity, how many links on (say) they Daily Mail website will require opting out ?
Re: Think of the children
Or in my lads case, to use the canteen. Personally I had no problem with it ... it was hardly space-age kit, and it saved the kids having to carry money and incidentally, meant kids who didn't pay for school dinners weren't singled out in anyway.
Gummi bears anyone ?
a few hilarious ****-ups with the "infallible" system, and they'll be quietly pensioned off.
As a matter of interest, does anyone know of anywhere that uses SOLELY fingerprint ID for NON-TRIVIAL applications ?
Plus ca change ...
GPO -> British Telecom -> BT did nothing to improve customer service.
makes human life cheap.
Who would benefit from that ?
Re: Side question
At least you're not paying shareholder dividends.
Remember when they were
The Department of Stealth and Total Obscurity ?
Weird memory ...
of the Post Office/BT claiming copyright in the phone book, even though it's just an ordered list of names. As I recall the court agreed that it could be protected by copyright, since the work had gone into to making it an original work.
Now I'm typing I think there was a company in the 80s who started scanning and OCRing phone books to provide their own database. This ruling stopped them dead (and incidentally removed any need for BT to then release an electronic phone book).
Parents are a nuisance if you want to control the population. They might actually be capable of encouraging children to think for themselves.
Every power-crazed dictatorship has done as much as possible to remove parents from bringing up children, and substituted the state.
If only it had Bluetooth
I *like* widows phone
Nokia Lumia 620 - supplied by work.
despite being a bit of a tech-head geek, I also have a family, and simply could not sell getting an iPhone to the budget committee ('er indoors). And since the iPhone has come out, nothing anyone I know who has one has made me go "I MUST have an iPhone".
My (continued) grumble about WP8 is lack of apps (and for the poster above who said he wanted WP to have more apps *and* features, as far as I can see, it's the apps that provide the features).
And to all the Android fanbois out there ... 'er indoors has an HTC Wildfire, and trying to get it's text-to-speech and speech-to-text working ... well after 18 months they still aren't. And don't get me started about the bluetooth.
Most apps for TTS are really concerned about how many accents they can provide. Actually features - not so important.
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