1166 posts • joined 5 Mar 2010
I read a lovely quote recently
Someone said they'd know when they lived in a better world, when schools and hospitals have all they need, and the army has to do a sponsored walk if they want a tank.
"I really thing the chugging model is wrong, and would love to see it stop (I'm not sure how, or rather "why" we could ban it though)."
is to tax charities.
There aren't many charities I give to nowadays
I refuse to give any money to a charity who either uses chuggers, or makes marketing calls to me. I feel desperately sorry for the good folk who actually collect money by freezing their 'nads off shaking a bucket, when you realise that the "charity" is then going to spend that money with a commercial outfit, and on directors salaries.
A few months ago, working from home, I noticed a car pull up outside (we live in a cul de sac). Out got 4 guys, clipboards and lanyards at the ready, and they proceeded to flashmob the street, for .... Macmillan Cancer. Won't take a penny, but are *very* pushy to get a monthly DD signed up. I haven't checked, but I suspect that if the DD is cancelled before the collectors made any commission off it (why do you think they do it) then they will be able to clawback a fee from the charity.
Criminal libel in the UK
is a very nasty charge to face (luckily only rich people can do it). Basically it's an accusation that the originator of the libel is so deliberately defaming, they need jailing. It also makes any part of the distribution chain responsible. For those interested, read up on the "Goldenballs" incident from the 1970s, where Private Eye was sued by Sir James Goldsmith. He launched a criminal libel writ, and had W H Smiths prosecuted (which is why they stopped selling Private Eye for years in the 70s and 80s).
For my final year project, in '87, before I could work on the software, I had to write the assembler. On a VAX.
Found myself in Comet yesterday
they were next door to the shoe shop the Mrs wanted to go to (!). Busy, but hardly queuing out the door. Had a walk round. Most stuff was still at 10% of the MRP, so still more expensive than a 5 minute google.
Given they're already over-burdened with older models, I can see a lot of stock being left in the stores when the shutters go down. And despite the Dixons/Maplin thing, I suspect very few will ever re-open in any guise. Every retail park near me has at least one empty cathedral-sized unit. And the nearest shopping centre has empty units where JJB, TJ Hughes, Peacocks, Alders, Woolworths, Clinton, Millets, Past Times were, to say nothing of the smaller units. I wonder how it works with business rates ... because looks to me like you're going to have to squeeze more from less.
On radio  last week
Tuesdays PM, some expert made a very shrewd point about Starbucks. He said that they claimed to HMRC they hadn't made a profit, whilst at the same time publishing shareholder accounts (in the US) showing how much profit they were taking (since shareholders like profit).
He also made the point that HMRC *already* had the powers to use such documentation in calculating tax liability.
But when Vodafone can write of billions of tax over a cosy afternoon tea with the head of the HMRC (remember the guy who tried to tell the select committee he didn't have to answer them) what's the point ?
There is absolutely zero incentive for HMRC themselves to simplify the tax system - the more complex it is the more of them you need.
Just blue-sky thinking, but why not abolish all taxes, and simply take a %age of every single transaction made with currency . Imagine the Pound as the IP of the UK government, and every time it's used they get a licensing fee.
no one has mentioned Mike Hunt yet
No, it WAS permitted early on in the bible, and was then forbidden.
people can be sued for libel ....
However, bear in mind, UK public policy
is rather than fix the potholes, pay for the punctures.
you'll find there *is* a criminal libel. And you really, really, really, really, really, really would not want to be charged with it, let alone found guilty. Ask Private Eye about "Goldenballs".
Criminal libel makes every person in the chain guilty. That's why WH Smiths stopped selling Private Eye for ages in the 70s and 80s. They were found guilty of criminal libel, and had to pay quite a bit.
If you're relying on HIGNFY as legal gospel ...
I'll come visit you at Her Maj's pleasure.
UK libel laws are incredibly subtle, and easy to fall foul of. Just saying "allegedly" before a scurrilous statement would be no defence whatsoever, if a court felt you clearly intended to defame someone. Also, bear in mind that in the UK, veracity is not an automatic defence to libel. Which maybe why Jimmy Savile went unreported for so long. You could have found yourself facing a libel suit if you said "Jimmy Savile does a lot of work for childrens charities, and is famous for being surrounded by young girls on TOTP" in a context implying something less wholesome. Both statements true. But you could go down.
where managers earn their money
circuits and lines are assessed as part of a businesses BCP plans. If you have predicated your business on a single telecoms provider and circuit then it needs to be flagged as an issue and either rectified (get a second supplier and circuitry) or devise a compensating control (which may be to power your entire internet pipe through a 3G dongle). Our BCP has an off site war room setup with a 3rd party (Sungard) where essential staff would be transferred in the event of a building becoming compromised (i.e. no internet access).
BCP/DR is a serious business - getting it wrong can result in going under.
Doesn't surprise me ...
Storage is cheap, processing is expensive (and slow). So if you are into *big* data analysis, you'll build massive cubes to cut down on the processing needed for slice-n-dice multi-dimensional reports.
Company I worked for could easily build a 10Gb series of cubes overnight. Each one is unique, so no differential possible.
Doesn't work that way.
The "healthier" the population, the longer they live. And there's pretty much universal research which shows that the cost of providing healthcare rises exponentially as you start going over 40. Or in other words 80% of your heath spending will be on the 20% of the oldest of your population.
The longer people live, the more chance they have to develop (expensive) cancers that they would have died not knowing anything about, if they died younger.
"Logans Run" ... if you can get over the 70s-ness of it all made a serious point.
Depending how you define healthy.
Re: If you encrypt something more than once...
I have a very vague memory that multiple encryption can weaken the resulting ciphertext. Can't remember why. It will also become increasingly (and exponentially) harder - and therefore slower.
having had WP7 foisted on my, by an evangelical IT department (who have now canned it, for the reasons I shall list), I have actually grown used to it. And to be fair, it pretty much does the job with a couple of glaring exceptions:
1) can't record calls (although I have since learned that iOS can't either, and it's a limitation of the OS architecture no being able to run a background app while the phone is active)
2) no bluetooth file transfer
The fact that WP7 won't be upgraded to WP8 is a massive slap in the face. It's clear that MS regard WP7 as a stopgap, like WP6.5 was to WinCE, so there is a sense of being lumbered with WP7.
However, the biggest killer, is the total lack of apps. I refer people to a lack of BBC apps for WP7 for a start. There have been a few occasions when I've notice useful business apps that aren't available for WP7. It's this app-free feature which (IMHO) is going to do for WP8.
On a rare visit to the cinema
last weekend (Skyfall with the sprog) this advert was like an oasis in a sea of mobile phone and watch adverts.
Why not ban the Guiness ads - surely all that surfing is dangerous ?
Please fix the forums first
before adding icons (unless you add a "please fix it" icon).
You *used* to be able to "view post in context" when reviewing your own posts. Click that link and it took you - amazingly - to see your post in the thread.
You took it away over a year ago - and looking in the user forums, I'm not the only one who misses it.
Re: What about
very likely yes.
Whilst I might agree with you about volunteer soldiers, it's worth remembering that a great majority of soldiers in WW1 and WW2 were conscripts, who had very little choice.
Ah, if only life were that easy ...
The problem is "friends" who can create a chain whereby the originator has no idea AND CAN HAVE NO IDEA who will actually see what they post - even if they are technically savvy, let alone the average FB user.
Clearly the Malicious Communications act (or whatever) has some sort of wording that ignores intent which means it's very possible you could be arrested even though it's patently obvious you did intend offence.
Bearing in mind, in the UK, arrest is a punishment in itself, involving the forcible taking of DNA and fingerprints, and possible problems when applying for US visas.
Re: Not that readily
nowadays you'd be arrested.
Re: Not really too bothered by ads ...
Well a lot of US shows are 42 minutes long ... Although I agree with other posters about the irritating development of in-programme trailers and messages. But these are probably an inducement to buy the DVD.
I wonder if one day we'll fall through the looking glass, and every TV programme is just an advert for another TV programme ....
Not really too bothered by ads ...
Since I never watch anything in realtime anymore. Say there's a 1 hour programme on at 9pm ... set TiVo to record it, and start watching at 9:15, fast forwarding the ads.
Yes, 15 minutes of ads to an hours programme. Says it all really.
It seems advertisers have cottoned on to this, which is why you get long shots of big logos - you can still see them at 10x speed.
Didn't TiVo get into problems for this
back in the 90s ? ISTR they offered a subscription service which connected to a database which held details of where the ads were (presumably entered by a human). The TiVo would load the timings and use them to skip ads on recorded content.
Another reason (if one were needed)
to avoid proprietary formats. Or insist that the system can export to a standard. Especially given the amount of research that is going into software to scan medical images.
Given the current climate, this is easily stopped with two words:
should torpaedo it
Re: Abuse of process
We live in hope ... occasionally judges can really stick it to the man ....
Mr Rahmatullah, a Pakistani citizen, was transferred to US forces after
being detained by British forces in February 2004 in an area of Iraq under
US control. Shortly after that, the UK authorities became aware that US
forces intended to transfer him out of Iraq. That transfer took place
without the UK having been informed of it. By June 2004 UK officials knew
that Mr Rahmatullah was no longer in Iraq. He had been taken to
Afghanistan and was being held in a detention facility in Bagram Air Field
and there he has remained. On 15 June 2010 the recommendation of a
detainee review board of the US army that Mr Rahmatullah be released was
approved by a senior officer but this has not taken place.
Although the legality of Mr Rahmatullah’s detention did not need to be
determined for the purposes of this appeal, there was clear prima facie
evidence that he is detained unlawfully under the Geneva Convention. The
UK was under a duty to ensure that Mr Rahmatullah was not being held in
breach of the GC or to request his return.
Abuse of process
I'm not a human rights expert, but this smacks of abuse of process. The CPS had every opportunity to prosecute in the UK. They *repeatedly* declined. Now the US has been bitchslapped by the Home Secretary (of all people !) they suddenly decide they *do* want to prosecute ?
Hopefully there's a trial judge that agrees with me.
Offered me an NFC sticker for my phone. It's just over 1mm thick, and I stuck it on the *inside* of the battery cover (why advertise the fact). Using it at McDonalds is a little like watching primitive tribesman worshipping a cigarette lighter ....
Speaking of Chrome ...
Has anyone else noticed this annoying "feature" which has crept in which makes tabs a little bit loose ? You click on a tab, and something makes Chrome detach it into a new browser window ? It never used to do it, and I've been using it for over 2 years.
Hang on ...
are we serious expected to believe that the Prudential ran an automated process to merge accounts ? And that that process was allowed to complete with no oversight, no manual inspection of affected records. And that that process was allowed to touch live accounts ?
Re: and go through the books with a fine tooth-comb
you don't comb *your* teeth ?
Copy protection ?
Good lord ... Elite. Does anyone remember that weird viewer thing you had to put up to the TV to read the CAPTCHA-style graphic (ZX Spectrum version). All very well, until other games started using it, at which point they were easy to *coughs* remotely backup.
When the Atari version (IIRC) came out they changed tactic, and you had to enter a word from the manual. A couple of friends spent all weekend loading the game, and compiled an A4 sheet of paper with the most common words in it. You were unlucky if you needed more than 2 goes to load it ...
Re: No disrespect ...
Re: If they didn't have all their electricity cables above ground...
Bollocks they did. 1987 the power went of in almost all of the South East. I was living in Woolwich by the river and looked out into total and utter darkness the like of which I had never seen.
Fair point about LV cables though.
Re: If they didn't have all their electricity cables above ground...
I agree. They should envy the lack of high voltage cables in the UK, making us invulnerable to hurricanes. That's why nobody remembers the 1987 one, because the lights stayed on.
it's Darwinism of some description
The shame of it is
back in the early 80s, the UK was light years ahead of the rest of the world when it came to computing in education. Every *class* had a BBC micro by 1985. Even the US got worried by how quickly we'd started running with the ball.
Not quite sure what went wrong.
If you read the books
you get the idea that Bond is basically a thug. Urbane, witty, charming, but someone who would just as likely kill you as look at you - definitely to be avoided in a dark alley.
Of all the actors who have played Bond, only Connery and Craig (IMHO) have had that edge of danger about their presence which conveyed an air of menace. Which is why Roger Moore was so, so, so, so wrong.
Re: And before that, it was car mechanics ...
Mother *in-law* :)
The point I was making that if you go into a shop, and ask someone who works IN THAT SHOP what they suggest, it really is not worthy of a headline if they suggest something which makes them money. Ironically the only people who can't get away with this are lawyers. However you have to pay them *before* you get the advice.
And before that, it was car mechanics ...
the problem is not the industry needs regulation, the problem is the customers just don't have the level of knowledge to guard against shysters. Same in personal finance, or medical matters. The only reason the world of medicine is so regulated, is because dodgy doctors can leave a trail of dead people.
I have very limited sympathy for people who get ripped of in these cases. Take my Mother in Law, for example. You'd think she'd know I have a passing competence in IT - quite aside from my day job as support engineer, programmer, senior developer, manager, consultant and the number of times I have sorted her sodding email out. Yet she spunked £600 on a new machine (nothing wrong with the old) last year after a 30 second chat with a "nice man in PC World". Why ? He said machines "can wear out after a couple of years". I was told this with a slight sniff of disapproval, as if *I* should have known that. Although in hindsight, he did me a favour - I haven't been asked to fix anything since then. Not because it hasn't gone wrong - just the first time it happened, I suggested she speak to the experts rather than me ... I don't think she picked up the sarcasm, but age tends to bring a certain unwillingness to apologise.
A twist on the "Yes Minister" story
about "Open Government". The Minister tells his staff he wants to know everything that happens in his department. Obligingly the civil servants ensure he has it. Receipts for pencils. Memos about tea rosters. They drown him in information. In the end he has to give in, and asks just to have the data he needs.
"But Minister, how do we know what you need to know ?" purrs Sir Humphrey.
By drowning the press in data, (and let's think here. What is the capacity of the press to handle data ? x Gb/day ?) the government will ensure they can hide anything in plain sight ... just pump out >x Gb/day.
Don't take their phone away - take their car.
If I could issue tickets for people using their phone when driving, I could solve the deficit in a week.
I don't know why this particular action manages to infuriate me so much. But there is something galling about seeing someone in a £40,000 car who didn't have the brains to buy a bluetooth - or get one bundled with their phone (like wot I did). Everyone knows the ban was for safetys sake - so these selfish cunts (thanks AC@13:21) are basically saying to the world "I couldn't give a toss about anyone elses safety."
Members of hacker collective Anonymous have stopped supporting Wikileaks after the site put up a paywall, saying that Wikileaks is more bothered about Julian Assange™ than getting information to the public.
is that the sound of a penny dropping ?
Why aren't premium-rate numbers an "opt-in" feature ?
Funny, all the talk from government about making 18+ content on t'web opt-in, but no-one has ever had the balls to call for these phone lines to be an opt in feature.
Personally I resent having to *pay* per month to block premium numbers. But we had to when our son started trying to call the premium numbers some games companies have.
- Vid Hubble 'scope scans 200000 ton CHUNKY CRUMBLE ENIGMA
- Google offers up its own Googlers in cloud channel chumship trawl
- Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?
- Interview Global Warming IS REAL, argues sceptic mathematician - it just isn't THERMAGEDDON
- Apple to grieving sons: NO, you cannot have access to your dead mum's iPad