* Posts by NumptyScrub

691 posts • joined 18 Mar 2010

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SAVE THE PLANKTON: So much more than whale food

NumptyScrub
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Re: mouthful of seawater? No thanks.

20 million bacteria (or 200 million viruses) in a mouthful of seawater is apparently a tiny fraction of the potentially >20 billion microbes already present in the mouth. You could advance the argument that the mouth is contaminating the seawater, rather than the other way round... ^^;

You probably don't want to think about the number of bacteria in a "lungful of air" either. Have a pint, you're looking a bit peaky there...

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Hacker uses Starbucks INFINITE MONEY for free CHICKEN SANDWICH

NumptyScrub
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Starbucks simply exploit a validation issue in the transfer pricing codebase. It's not illegal to do so...

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ZX Spectrum 'Hobbit' revival sparks developer dispute

NumptyScrub
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Indeed

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Clinton defence of personal email server fails to placate critics

NumptyScrub
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Re: In this case it certainly wasn't illegal:

Yes, currently , what you say in your MAIN paragraph is the LAW NOW, TODAY. But prior to Clinton stepping down, for EMAIL, was NOT the case.

Really? The USDOJ guidance on Records has a link to archive.gov's definition of "a record":

Records include all books, papers, maps, photographs, machine-readable materials, or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by an agency of the United States Government under Federal law or in connection with the transaction of public business and preserved or appropriate for preservation by that agency or its legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the Government or because of the informational value of the data in them

Email is an "other documentary material" in that list, and I would be happy to argue as such in court (IANAL though). Looks to me like the Federal Records Act 1950 may indeed be relevant enough, even without any amendments that specifically mention email, to claim that Hilary's decision to only use personal email and then fail to properly record all of it in case it is required, may already have been an offense.

Speed limit regulations do not specifically mention my make and model of motor vehicle, but I am still liable for exceeding them with my make and model of vehicle. Federal documentation legislation doesn't have to specifically mention email, for emails sent as official Federal correspondence to count as Federal documents...

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Backpage child sex trafficking lawsuit nixed thanks to 'internet freedoms'

NumptyScrub
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Re: Love that last paragraph

Free speech does not cover all speech. There are legitimate restrictions, though few. Good judgment and responsible behavior should be mandated.

"Free speech" does cover all speech, including the speech that most people agree shouldn't be spoken. That's why we don't have "free speech" (in either the UK, or the US) and instead have various levels of restricted speech; the concepts of slander and libel as a crime, and the concept of free speech, are mutually exclusive ones.

It's outrageous to think ANY entity would NOT be held responsible for publishing the information in this lawsuit. It's no surprise at all the EFF would support the abuse of people under the guise of free speech. Apparently some folks do not understand that ALL speech is not free and that this is a perfect example of where an entity is liable for their negligence in allowing these ads by crims for illegal behavior to be posted. There are responsibilities associated with mass publication and these folks clearly are negligent in allowing these ads to be published.

I appreciate that the subject matter here is immensely emotive, but while the EFF are doing themselves no favours getting involved in this one, the actual decision was not theirs; it was the judge. An actual legal Judge, made a legally binding decision in a court of law, that people (including yourself) disagree with. You are free to disagree (unless you make slanderous or libellous comments about the judge, obviously), but don't blame the EFF for any perceived travesty of justice; blame the judge who disagrees with your interpretation of the law.

It would also be nice if you didn't blame me for pointing this out, as well, although I understand that for immensely emotive subjects like this, it is easy to get into the "anyone who disagrees must be destroyed!" mindset.

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+5 ROOTKIT OF VENGEANCE defeats forces of gaming good

NumptyScrub
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Re: Streaming does have its advantages

Fuck everyone else in the game. If I can afford a better PC that can display better graphics and higher framerates, why should I be punished just because other people can't?

I just buy the developers, and they write the game to always put me in top spot regardless, because it is not cheating if it is all part of the legitimate game code. That's how you pay to win :P

You are saying that you should be able to pay to win, right? That's how I'm interpreting your statement anyway... ^^;

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Tech troll's podcasting patent blown out of the water by EFF torpedo

NumptyScrub
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Re: Basically no, as he settled out of court.

One thing that would change that is making all of their settlements related to the patent chargeable back to them if the patent(s) or even parts of it are invalidated.

Easily circumventable by ensuring all profits leave via dividend as soon as they get the payout(s), and then filing for bankruptcy if they ever get told to pay money back. Your "new", "completely unrelated" company then gets to buy the remaining patent portfolio for a song off the old one, and back to BAU.

I can't see it making any perceivable to the existing patent troll companies, even if it were implemented that way :(

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BOFFINS: Oxygen-free, methane-based ALIENS may EXIST on icy SATURN moon Titan

NumptyScrub
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Re: Saturn's moon Titan...never had a dinosaur....or a fern.

Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe, and carbon is a natural by-product of the stellar fusion process. Methane is found in interstellar clouds (apparently) so having a planetary body with a high proportion of it is easy to explain just by aggregation from the protoplanetary disc...

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NumptyScrub
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Re: Thx to you, too

If we scooped it all up, it would probably all fit inside 1km2, out of a total 38 million km2 surface area. Also, lifting off with a toilet full of poop requires more reaction mass, I can't say I am surprised that they flushed before setting off ^^;

We apparently have a giant floating mass of plastics larger than Texas in the Pacific, in that context a few broken landers, lunar rovers and some bags of effluent seem pretty tame.

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Theresa May: Right, THIS time we're getting the Snoopers' Charter in

NumptyScrub
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Re: Good - Forces me to get off my arse and encrypt everything

Of course, as far as GCHQ is concerned, if they can't trivially get all your data with little to no effort, you suddenly become a person of extreme interest. You are aware that all security services operate on the premise that everyone is guilty until proven innocent, right?

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Love-rat fanboi left bobbing for Apples in tiny Japanese bath

NumptyScrub
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Re: his beloved collection of overpriced blahware

I'd like to see you try running Windows on a PowerBook, you need an Intel CPU for Windows.

Well, except the ARM builds of Windows (various Windows Phone / Windows CE versions, Windows 8 RT, Windows 10 for Pi) which don't require an Intel CPU. ;)

Windows 10 for Pi is by far the most bizarre press release I've seen from MS yet...

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Turkey PM bans Twitter, YouTube as 'tools of terrorist propaganda'

NumptyScrub
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Re: So....

So you don't think circumstances make a difference? Is the guy holding shotgun at a bank teller no different to the clay pigeon shooter? Don't be a twat.

Compare one 5-year old in a Batman costume standing at my door demanding sweets with menaces, with one of those Anonymous chucklefucks spending 3 hours holding a placard (while wearing a mask) and then going home. Do circumstances make a difference? Nope, they both completely legally wore a mask in public and committed no crime.

No, but wearing a mask in public at a demonstration is probably a good indication you might have intent to do something wrong or you don't want to police to know its you there. Why would someone who has nothing to hide bother?

Utter bullshit and literally a specific logical fallacy (fyi in this case P is "is a criminal" and Q is "wearing a mask"); as well as being trivial enough to refute using actual events. "Criminal" and "wearing a mask" are not commutative, and they are not causal, and I challenge you to provide logical proof of your statement.

Wearing a mask in public simply means you are wearing a mask in public. If you seriously believe that anyone who chooses to wear a mask (or balaclava, or hoodie) in public is "probably" a criminal then petition your MP to make balaclavas illegal, because until that point (where the mere act of wearing one is itself a crime) your argument is as leaky as a colander.

ISIS are terrorists, and ISIS are Muslim. If you can see why equating "Terrorist" and "Muslim" is a bad thing, I'm hoping you can see why equating balaclavas and rioters is just as bad. Lots of people wear balaclavas, but only a tiny percentage are rioters, and tarring us all with the same brush is really fucking annoying (not to mention bigoted as fuck).

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NumptyScrub
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Re: So....

No it isn't actually. It means if you have no intention of causing trouble then you have no reason to cover up. Why would they be fearful unless they knew they were going to do something wrong?

Please re-read what I've just quoted there, and tell me if it sounds an awful lot like the stereotypical "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" argument. Protip: it does, because you are basically using the "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" argument.

Is your issue with me calling it that simply one of syntatical pedantry? Would you prefer I called it the "nothing to fear, no reason to hide" argument instead so it exactly matches the syntax of your assertions? I can do that if you like.

Not automatically but the potential is there to cause trouble if they can't be identified. Give me a good reason why in a western democracy someone would cover their face at a protest.

You are basically arguing that the act of wearing a mask in public shows direct criminal intent; tell that to the gaggle of kids outside my door at Halloween wearing various spooky costumes, or the clueless Anonymous nubbins at one of their rallies. Citation: your second sentence I quoted at the start of this reply; "It means if you have no intention of causing trouble then you have no reason to cover up." 4 masked individuals (plus parent or guardian) stood outside my door demanding sweets with menaces; is that really direct, criminal intent?

If kids can do it for fun, then adults can do it for fun. Those numbnuts in Anonymous rallies are doing it for fun. So to answer your request for "a good reason" to cover your face in public: for fun.

Silly little kids wearing masks from a film doesn't count as a serious protest.

a) any organised protest gathering that gets several thousand people together is by definition pretty serious, even if you think all the people that turn up are dicks

b) several thousand masked protesters that do not go on to commit criminal acts is evidence which directly rebukes your premise that anyone in the West who covers their face is intending to cause trouble.

Wearing a mask in public is not a criminal act, nor is it a guaranteed precursor to a criminal act, and there is more than one "good reason" to do so (Halloween, fancy dress, the Great Gorilla Run, just for the giggles). Correlation is not causation; wearing a mask in public does not make you a criminal, being a criminal makes you a criminal and wearing a mask is irrelevant.

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NumptyScrub
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Re: So....

Can you cut and paste where I asserted that? No, didn't think so. If you're going to lie try not to make it quite so easy to disprove.

Here you go:

"If you're demonstrating peacefully and not breaking the law you have no reason to cover your face."

Your actual copy/pasted quote there is essentially paraphrasing "If you have nothing to fear, then you have no reason to hide"; it's the classic logical complement of the actual "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" statement. I though it was an obvious parallel, but I'll accept that I might be the only person who would make that jump.

If you think its fine to cover your face in a public place without issue in every situation then try and walk into a bank with your lid on and see how far you get.

To quote you back at yourself, could you confirm where I asserted that? I simply pointed out a set of situations (I am not the only motorcyclist in the UK, so it will be a set, not a single one) where wearing a balaclava is completely socially acceptable, considered a valid reason to wear one, and happens regularly.

On a lighter note, I actually have walked into a high street bank wearing my motorcycle helmet; this particular one is a full-face opener, and the face part was flipped up, revealing the rather large face hole in the balaclava (the motorcycle ones, or at least the ones I own, aren't your classic film ninja-eye-slit headgear, the face holes are about the size of a face). It was completely possible for me to both keep my helmet and balaclava on, and reveal almost my entire face while talking to the bank staff. I've done exactly the same thing when paying for petrol and the cashiers had no problem with it either. Point that I never actually said validated anyway, I guess?

"On a scale of Right to Wrong, wearing clothing at a protest doesn't even come close."

Your naivety is breathteaking. But frankly unsurprising on this site.

Naïve? Naïveté would be in thinking that everyone who turns up to a protest wearing a mask is automatically a violent criminal.

In your own words, "If you're demonstrating peacefully and not breaking the law you have no reason to cover your face. Ok, in turkey perhaps that rule doesn't apply, but in the west people who cover their faces at demos usually have trouble in mind."

People at Anonymous rallies wear masks to cover their faces, and the vast majority intend nothing more than peaceful protest. It's a basic, low-effort refutation, but would still appear to be a valid refutation nonetheless. Have I missed something?

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NumptyScrub
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Re: I totally agree with this

If youtube and twitter can't abide by their own policies they should be shut down. Allowing themselves to be used to broadcast ransom demands and beheadings, and to be the media outlet of choice by terrorist organisations, they should be ashamed of themselves.

If "terrorists" were disseminating "terrorist" information by putting bill posters up on empty walls, would you blame the walls (or the owners of the walls) for carrying that information, or the people who posted it in the first place? If I receive a phone call from someone constantly shouting racial epithets down the phone, and telling me how they will kill me slowly for having the "wrong" genetics, should my telephony provider be shut down for allowing it, or is it only the person who called me who should face prosecution for their actions?

Also, terrorist according to which side? I see BBC News showed an awful lot of coverage of the insurgent US and UK forces when they toppled the sovereign government of Iraq (as in, the cocksucker that we put in charge in the first place), but we were blatantly the terrorist forces in that instance... violent acts that intended "(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping" and which were against Iraqi stat and/or federal law.

Freedom of speech does not mean freedom to blackmail, kidnap and murder.

It does, however, mean the freedom to talk about blackmail, kidnap and murder. Anyway, the point is moot because no country on the planet has actual "freedom of speech". All of them have laws governing various forms of hate speech and incitement (or exhortation) to violence, and even the "enlightened" countries have libel and slander laws. It would probably cause less confusion if people stopped using the terms "free speech" or "freedom of speech", because it hasn't been a thing for several hundred years, at least.

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NumptyScrub
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Re: So....

If you're demonstrating peacefully and not breaking the law you have no reason to cover your face.

I haven't seen anyone wear a balaclava due to the weather for decades and unless you live way north of the artic circle or are at Amundson base in antartica I can't see any reason to wear one.

I wear a balaclava, underneath my motorcycle helmet, every time I get on the bike, because here in the UK 70mph can get pretty fucking cold, even in summer (I have a silk one for summer, and a "windproof" thermal one for winter). Does that refute your premise sufficiently? Do a google search for "motorcycle balaclava", this is a big enough thing to be a product range in its own right ;)

Regarding the blatant "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" assertion of yours, then I can't summon up the energy to write a proper rebuttal. Suffice to say that this inevitably gets trotted out by people who think they have nothing to fear, until you point out that they e.g. habitually exceed speed limits, drive the morning after (while still potentially over the limit), watch / listen to copyrighted material that they do not have the rights to, and various other offenses (civil and/or criminal). Everyone who I have had this conversation with IRL has at least 3 habitual offenses they commit either without thinking, or (in most cases) actively commit "because it's not a real crime" (aka the "everyone does that so it doesn't count" defense).

On a scale of Right to Wrong, wearing clothing at a protest doesn't even come close.

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Microsoft update mayhem delays German basketball game, costs team dear

NumptyScrub
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Re: Clearly it's a case of...

All possible because the new files were already in-place earlier as *NIX style file systems allow an atomic in-place replacement of files, but still allows an open file handle to continue using the previous on-disk data until the last handle is closed (i.e. on shut-down for the kernel or similar).

Which, of course, also allows users to have updated Firefox to version 36, but still be running an instance of Firefox 25 that has remained open for the past 12 months, running a 12 month old version of the Flash player plugin, even though they updated Flash Player only yesterday.

Atomic in-place replacement of files is awesome, but there are some updates that I would personally want flagged as "the system will close all instances of this to ensure the patched code is being used" because otherwise end-users (and not just the less experienced ones) can end up running old, potentially vulnerable code without realising. MS forcing reboots, for things that shouldn't actually require reboots, is one (ill-advised, irritating) method of mitigating that.

Best practise would be to take the best parts of both approaches, of course, even if you would be borrowing far more heavily from one than the other ;)

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Atomic keyrings: Just how bright are they?

NumptyScrub
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Re: How bright are they?

I have a Traser branded green one of these I got as a present from a friend over a decade ago (more like 15+ years I think). When appraised as a torch, the output is pitiful bordering on useless. When appraised just as a luminous marker that needs no batteries, the output is perfectly adequate and they appear to last for ever.

I can't read books with it (at least I wouldn't want to try), but I can always find my keys in the dark. ;)

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EU court: Mobe makers not liable for users' copyright badness

NumptyScrub
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Commissioned reports

UK Music commissioned an authoritative economic report that the damage and potential damage of an uncompensated private copying exception is quite significant.

Whereas I commissioned a report that the damage and potential damage of an uncompensated private copying exception is practically insignificant. Where do I get it stamped as "authoritative"? Does it need to be laser printed, or will the original crayon suffice? This is important.

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Shove off, ugly folk, says site for people who love themselves

NumptyScrub
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Re: Tawnie Lynn (pictured)

Don't like the site, don't join. Don't like that they turn away people who don't meet their standards? Same is true when I interview someone for a job (or am interviewed). Different people want different things from a partner. What is wrong with specialist dating sites in principle?

The horribly grey area involving bigotry / discrimination legislation, IMO. If they specialise in interests or activities then fair enough, but when they specialise purely in physical characteristics, it does start to skirt dangerously close to existing discrimination legislation.

Or if it is not possible to disparage their looks, to make unsupported claims about how they must be shallow or dumb.

Regarding Ms. Lynn, then I am perfectly happy judging her purely on her words:

“If the management failed to maintain the quality of the site by polluting the gene pool, most members would leave. ... It would make BeautifulPeople just like every other dating site – full of the kind of people you wouldn’t want to share an elevator with, let alone date.”

It is only 2 sentences, but I think there are enough hints in there to gauge the depth of her character, at least superficially.

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Upchuck nation: Half a million CHUMPS now own Google Cardboard VR gear

NumptyScrub
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A sucker and his money are soon parted. Or half a million suckers as it turns out.

$20 for a bit of cardboard and a $5 pair of lenses? What are these people thinking?

"Fuck me, that's a shitload cheaper than $300 plus shipping and taxes for an Oculus Rift? (which is still a development kit and comes with no support)"

BTW I paid $300 plus shipping and taxes for the Rift, and have also tried the Cardboard at a friends, and while the far more expensive Oculus is certainly "better" in a subjective sense, I can't fault Cardboard at the price. If you want to piss about with some VR (and you have an Android device that supports Cardboard) it's definitely worth either $25 to the lazy person, or your time measuring and cutting and gluing cardboard together.

Just be aware, Google Cardboard will probably function as a gateway drug to the much more expensive Oculus Rift. You have been warned ^^;

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Frontier promises it won't 'dumb down' Elite: Dangerous for Xbox

NumptyScrub
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This... is a good damn thing. Assuming it's connected to the same server/peer system as the PC version, it will draw in a lot of people - friends of mine among them - who would LIKE to play Elite, but only own a console, or who don't want the hassle of buying stuff they can only play on the PC quietly gathering dust in a corner of the house they don't want to sit in.

It will be a different multiplayer environment, MS require XBox games to use the Live servers for multiplayer, meaning that the existing FDEV infrastructure will be wholly incompatible. There would need to be a "Games for Windows Live" version to allow for cross platform gaming (Shadowrun is the only one that springs to mind, although there might have been others). I don't think anyone even codes for GfWL any more, and I can't say I blame them... ^^;

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Forget 1,000 lashes for Facebook posts, Saudis now want to behead blogger Raif Badawi

NumptyScrub
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Re: Reproachless

Right and wrong and justice are absolutes that exist for all times and places, and are not subject to change by human whim, or alterable to benefit vested interests.

"Right" and "wrong" and "justice" are entirely relative, and are constantly redefined as societal norms evolve. The Crusades were considered "right" and "just" at the time, as were the practises of slavery and indentured servitude, for quite some time. The concept of judicial combat (and personal duels) even managed to last well beyond the 16th century when it was outlawed in the UK. The Saudi authorities happen to consider beheading for apostasy to be "right" and "just", and while I completely disagree, I suspect that like me you already know a few people who would consider beheading "right" and "just" for the crime of committing acts of paedophilia.

I have a personal definition of what is right and what is wrong, which I adhere to, but I'm not naive enough to think that anyone but me has the exact same definition; life constantly puts people in front of me who have (sometimes vastly) different opinions on those concepts. They are certainly not immutable, if my experience is anything to go by.

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NumptyScrub
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Trollface

Re: Reproachless

2 : Saudi Arabian laws are not dictated by the USA, therefore the Saudi Arabian government are not commiting an act of agression against an innocent according to SA law. US laws apply only to the US...

This was also equally true of Saddam Hussein in Iraq; even though he was acting like a proper totalitarian despot, he was also the sovereign ruler of Iraq and acted entirely under Iraqi law (that he wrote himself, possibly in crayon), yet the US saw fit to go steaming in and replace him anyway. So they need to man the fuck up and go steaming into Saudi to "install democracy" as well, or they'll end up looking like giant hypocritical turds for replacing one human rights violating government, but completely ignoring another.

I'd put my money on the US deciding that the giant hypocritical turd look is in for this season, but maybe the lure of all those Saudi oil wells will prove me wrong.

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Murky online paedo retreat: The Nether explores the fantasy-reality divide

NumptyScrub
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Re: @x7

You appear to be attempting to equate paedophilia with homosexuality. Is your arugment that because one is accepted so should be the other?

Whereas you appear to be conflating "looking at depictions of something" to "immediately ready to do the depicted thing in real life at every opportunity". Which is a completely unfounded and basically untenable position.

Conceptually whats the difference between looking at pictures, watching videos, or indulging in virtual reality? All - in this content - are "artistic" (for want of a better world) representations of illegal practices and should be regarded as such. Society has already had its discussion and made its decision.

Aka bare assertion fallacy, you present the premise that looking at representations of an illegal activity should be itself illegal because "society has already had its discussion and made its decision". The mere fact that so many people disagree would seem to prove that society is not actually of one accord on this matter, notwithstanding that it is trivial to refute your premise: killing people is illegal, but watching John Wick or playing CoD: Advanced Warfare is a perfectly legal activity. Both activities have been undertaken by millions of people worldwide and are hugely popular. Society has apparently already made its decision, that watching movies and indulging in VR whose content involves illegal activities (like violence and murder), is perfectly fine in the name of entertainment.

The line that must not be crossed is turning thought into action. I can murder pixels all day long (I like playing internet shootmans like CoD myself) and I have done nothing wrong, but the second I take that outside then I become the criminal. Fiddling kids is bad and must be punished, but simply thinking of fiddling kids and doing nothing about it? Until it becomes action I don't see the issue there.

And in answer to the inevitable "but if you lock up anyone thinking of fiddling kids, you can prevent them being fiddled in the first place!" arguments, yes, that is exactly as effective as any other proposed method of punishing thoughtcrime. Overhear someone say "if X says that to me again I'll give them such a slap"? Report them for violent thoughtcrime. Have a friend tell you their shiny new BMW can do 120mph? Report them for speeding thoughtcrime. If you are going to suggest custodial sentences to "prevent" crimes then I insist you go the whole hog, so you can see for yourself just how stupid and unworkable the idea actually is.

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Is light a wave or a particle? Beaming boffins prove it's BOTH

NumptyScrub
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Re: Either... Or...

The interference pattern in this experiment clearly shows wave-like behaviour. But one may also reduce the intensity of light so that the pattern builds up over time, photon by photon, with the resultant impacts being very particle-like.

I thought that one was usually done with electrons, which convincingly shows that "particles" can (and do) exhibit wave-like properties just like de Broglie postulated. The much weirder part is checking for complementarity by trying to measure which slit the particle actually went through, and (partially or completely) destroying the interference pattern in the process.

Or in other words, if you make sure you keep a close eye on particles then they stop waving and interfering with each other, which could probably be labelled as Quantum Surveillance-state Dynamics (QSD). ^^;

I'm failing to see how this experiment breaks complementarity though, as I don't think there is a direct measurement of a photons particle properties (position or velocity) while it is a constituent of a standing wave, it is all inferred from the energy exchange between photon and electron being quantised. Is there something obvious I'm just too dumb to see?

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AT&T suddenly finds demand for 1Gbps fiber in Kansas City – just after Google arrived

NumptyScrub
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Re: We need Judge Green again!

Verizon *is* doing market research. I just got 50m/50m for 45 / month from them (no bundles). Not sure if I'd go for 1g/1g at almost twice the price (i am not a gamer).

Just to put that into perspective for you, you are paying $45/mo for 50Mbps, and the fibre offering detailed here is $70/mo for 1000Mbps. That's $25/mo for an extra 950Mbps, or from another perspective, a net loss for Verizon of $830/mo for selling 1Gbps of client bandwidth as a $70 package instead of 20 lots of 50Mbps packages.

You may only use 5GB of data per month regardless of your actual line speed, but a gigabit line will mean far less time spent waiting for that data you do use to get to you. You would also be doing consumers a favour getting the gigabit connection, and forcing Verizon to start pricing the slower packages more in line with the actual costs of provision; even $10/mo for 50Mbit ($200 per gigabit) makes them more overall ;)

Protip; once they reprice the slower connections, you can switch back and benefit from a package that is quick enough for you, but at a fraction of the old cost :D

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Zimmermann slams Cameron’s ‘absurd’ plans for crypto ban

NumptyScrub
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That was exactly what Labour expected when they introduced RIPA. "Oh, as a child-molesting, money laundering terrorists I could go to prison for two years if I don't reveal my key and my evil plans...or reveal the key and go down for life. Fair cop, there you go, guvnor, here's me keys".

Which is why they changed it. It now reads:

(5)A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable—

(a)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding [the appropriate maximum term] or to a fine, or to both;

(b)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or to both.

(5A)In subsection (5) ‘the appropriate maximum term’ means—

(a)in a national security case [or a child indecency case], five years; and

(b)in any other case, two years.

I seem to recall some judge thinking it should be increased to the same term as the potential offense it could be hiding, so 10+ years for failing to decrypt a file that might contain child porn (but cannot be proven to contain anything). May as well go hog wild and make it a life sentence to fail to provide a password, because you can tell they just want the good old days of "guilty until proven innocent" back.

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NumptyScrub
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Actually, I think that the generally recognised phrase is "nothing to hide, nothing to fear". Puts a different emphasis on things, doesn't it.

They took away my wealth, so I need not fear theft

They took away my children, so I need not fear paedophiles

They took away my vote, so I need not fear political corruption

They have taken everything from me, so I have nothing left to fear

Yep, definitely puts a different emphasis on things :)

A population and its government must use every means possible to keep pushing back against those who would exploit, kill and abuse them. What is guaranteed is that if we stop doing that, or we completely prevent our law enforcement agencies doing it for us, then the criminals, burglars, terrorists, paedophiles and corrupt will pay heed. They will be rubbing their hands with glee. And they will, quicker than you can blink, be giving you real reason to be afraid.

"Stopping" pushing back against those who would do us harm, would require us to remove existing powers from law enforcement, not failing to give them more powers. They already have the ability to get a warrant to target surveillance, and to detain suspects. 50 years ago that was considered perfectly adequate, and targeted surveillance is still available and still capable of providing useful information, including the ability to catch all communications data over cellular or fixed telephony and internet connectivity, for a known suspect, and to install and operate means of overhearing communications. All the encrypted VoIP or chat apps in the world are unable to stop someone from using a microphone to record you talking, or a camera to record you typing on a keyboard.

So the issue would appear to be all that fuss about getting the warrant in the first place? It would definitely be a lot easier for law enforcement if everyone was always under surveillance. You could easily identify political dissidents paedophiles if you have 24/7 recordings of everything they ever do, and then disappear them lock them up for good. The problem I have is that a 24/7 surveillance state is, pretty much by definition, a totalitarian state.

So give the politicians a break. You're worrying about comparatively minor intrusions into your use of technology.

I'm worrying about the ongoing erosion of privacy in the name of "safety", when the demons I am being "protected" from are less dangerous than driving my car; cars hurt and kill more people each year in any country than terrorists and paedophiles put together.

They're worrying about preventing people like you being killed, maimed, abused or exploited by some properly nasty baddies who really couldn't give a flying fuck for your privacy.

They apparently aren't worrying about me being killed or maimed by cars though, even though it is orders of magnitude more likely. They apparently aren't worrying about me being abused or exploited by corporate entities that want my personal data for marketing purposes, and are willing to lie, cheat and steal to get that data.

And it's clearly getting harder for governments to do that job. No thanks to those companies that make heaps of money providing internet services and pushing profitable adverts to baddies and goodies alike. It'd be nice if they lent us all a hand.

You mean those companies that provide a huge amount of political funding in order to ensure that laws favour their side? Here's a good one; my government already takes my medical data (gathered by the NHS) and hands it over to "selected" 3rd parties that provide a product or service that may be relevant to my medical history, as part of the Care.Data initiative. I have to specifically opt out if I do not want that to happen. I am told that opting out might mean I miss vital, life-saving offers.

"Be advertised at or you might die from something preventable". How fucking awesome is that?

There is of course far more to law enforcement than trawling through internet traffic (though the prior warning potentially gained could presumably be life saving). But do you honestly think that a democratically elected politician with less than four months before an election would risk vote-losing adverse publicity unless they thought that the alternative was worse? Now that might be something to really worry about.

If you honestly think Cameroon's outburst is anything other than an ill judged, badly misunderstood appeal to fearmongering then I think you may be mistaken. He hasn't got a clue what the actual outcome of "banning cryptography" would be otherwise he would have kept his fool mouth shut, this is a knee jerk "because terrorist!" response hoping to get scared citizens to vote for him out of fear.

Did you know, a recent study shows 100% of terrorists use transport to get to the place where they subsequently kill innocent people? I am also reliably informed that transport is responsible for some deaths every year just on its own! I reckon, if we really want to deal a terrifying blow to terrorists and save the lives of innocent people, then we should ban transport as soon as possible. It will quite literally save thousands of lives every year.

The recent focus on terrorism is because it makes them (the government) look bad, not because it saves lives, otherwise we'd be spending all that legislatory time making the roads safer by eroding driver privacy forcing drivers to be under surveillance at all times while driving. All right-thinking citizens obviously support drivers being under surveillance at all times (while driving) because only criminals break road traffic regulations. Nothing to hide, nothing to fear, right? :)

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NumptyScrub
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Re: The Point

The point is, and you'll not like this, is that a society based on "secrets" is a broken society. Who cares who you get up to things with? As long as you don't harm anyone else, you've nothing to fear. Oh, you're scared of ridicule? You'll grow up at some stage I'm sure and be more confident in your actions and your choices.

I have literally no problem with an open society where everything is publically available. I just demand that the government go first to prove their intent :)

Protip: they will never go first.

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NumptyScrub
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What exactly is the government's thinking for this?

Do they really expect terrorists or child molesters or possessors of abuse photos and videos to go "Better not use encryption. I'll be breaking the law."

Of course not. The thinking is this: encryption = guilty*

See encryption anywhere, and the person or people involved can be automatically sentenced to the maximum term for being a serial child molesting terrorist, without needing to spend any time investigating or creating a case. Obviously any encrypted data should be treated as if it contains the worst possible content and sentenced as such

*unless it's government, because they need encryption to do their job and thus it is a legitimate business tool and not criminal at all. Only other people who use encryption are all guaranteed criminals of the very worst sort, honest.

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NumptyScrub
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Re: Nothing to hide if you have done nothing wrong ?

Having a crap is not illegal, so why do toilets have doors ?

Shitting in public is illegal (public indecency laws), so we are basically being asked to install toilet doors that are opaque to the public but transparent to GCHQ (and transparent to anyone who knows how GCHQ make them transparent). Next we'll have to make walls out of the same stuff, and wear clothes made out of that stuff. GCHQ demands the ability to see all things at all times lest one terrorist be overlooked.

Then they decide to overlook suspected terrorists that they already know about, because they've not done anything for a few months, et voila! Charlie Hebdo

Asking for the ability to watch more people, because some people you chose to stop watching killed people, is pretty fucking disingenuous.

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Sick of the 'criminal' lies about pie? Lobby the government HERE

NumptyScrub
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Trollface

Re: [Pi's] full value has never been expressed...

π may be 10 in base π, but I reckon it's more amusing to use base 10π/3

Purely because then π = 3

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Death becomes it: Grim Fandango Remastered

NumptyScrub
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Re: Tank controls?

Like the original Resident Evil, where you press forwards to walk the direction your character is facing, push left to turn left etc. Most games these days instead map directions to cardinals (i.e. push the direction you want to go) rather than make them dependent on character facing.

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Drunk on Friday night? Then YOU probably DIDN'T spot Facebook's privacy tweak

NumptyScrub
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Re: Is this racist...

Can Germany be trusted with privacy?

Absolutely. You will actually struggle to find any other country who values privacy as much as Germany, in fact.

I love going there, the beer is good and the people are awesome (some can be a little stuffy until they get to know you, but that is the same anywhere).

As noted above, it's the part we gave to Russia that had the problems. You might want to blame Russian influence on the running of East Germany for that whole privacy clusterfuck. The German people who lived through that are still really sore about it, hence a unified Germany taking a pretty dim view of Panopticon style privacy policies ^^;

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Tearful boffins confirm grav wave tsunami NOT caused by Big Bang

NumptyScrub
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Phantom particles are particles that come in and out of existence on the quantum level. Space "bubbles" with these particles, but because they are matter/anti-matter pairs and self annihilate quickly they do not count as matter or energy being created.

Guys I think I found that "phantom particle" Doctor Drew was talking about :D

Except we've known about them for nearly a century (first proposed 1916) and yet cosmology has not been shaken to it's very core yet. Not sure why, maybe there is more thinking needs to be done about it :/

Phantom particles are not nearly as strange as quirks and anti-quirks and the subatomic particles that surround them. If you don't like the idea of Phantom particles popping in and out of existence your going to just hate it when you find out we live in a Hologram Universe...

Ahh, bless, that old "the universe is a fiction" meme that's been around for a few thousand years and has been (and is) a staple of philosophy. Unfortunately, in the absence of an alternative method of perception (i.e. Morpheus and Trinity busting you out of the Matrix), then your personal perception of "reality" is really the only one you can actually use to make your own judgements and decisions.

Solipsism for the win! I'm glad I keep imagining people like you, it does keep me amused :D

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NumptyScrub
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Re: In the beginning

I suspect it may have been more "fuck that's cold!"

Although since we're talking about gravity wave tsunami, maybe "belly flop!" is more appropriate ^^;

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What do China, FBI and UK have in common? All three want backdoors in Western technology

NumptyScrub
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WTF?

Re: citation needed

From the cryptome link:

Access to Telecommunications

[IUR 1] Law enforcement agencies require access to the entire telecommunications transmitted, or caused to be transmitted, to and from the number or other identifier of the target service used by the interception subject. Law enforcement agencies also require access to the call-associated data that are generated to process the call.

"Call" in this context means the entire telecommunications transmitted, or caused to be transmitted, to and from the entity associated with the number or other identifier specified in the legal authorisation. "Number" or "Identifier" is the means by which telecommunications facilities determine specific communications. Identifiers may refer to a physical or logical entity (e.g. user addresses, equipment identities, user name/passwords, port identities, mail addresses, etc.) and may differ according to the type of telecommunications system.

Typical, but not exclusive, examples for some specific services are: For PLMN IMSI, MS-ISDN, IMEI; for PSTN/ISDN directory numbers, port identification, personal and vanity numbers; for Internet (access) services IP addresses, account number, logon ID/password, PIN number and E-mail address.

Apparently European ISPs have to (are legally required to) store passwords in reversible encryption so they can provide them to (duly authorised) law enforcement for intercept purposes, unless I am reading that wrong.

What is this I don't even

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NumptyScrub
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Re: Understanding between nations is a beautiful thing!!

So which is safer, a single common backdoor that you give the key to dozens of different agencies in a hundred different countries - or a 1000 separate backdoors each allegedly known only to that agency.

No backdoor. Due process takes care of investigatory powers against known targets already, like being able to record conversations at the telephone switch, or forward all internet packets to a separate router for storage and deconstruction.

When surveillance is difficult, only important targets will be surveilled. When surveillance is trivial...

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What gets the internet REALLY excited? Kittens? No. EXPLODING Kittens

NumptyScrub
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Happy

Re: A long way to go

Elite: Dangerous - 3 (4?) million quid and the persistent universe, multiplayer game has been playable for the last 12 months, although many are arguing that it is not in a release state and should still be qualified as a beta.

Star Citizen - 40 million quid and the persistent universe, multiplayer game is "in design" (not "in production", note, still being designed) and the only playable module is an arena shooter

I tend to agree with most concerns I see raised about E: D (although I have literally zero care about offline mode, I purchase games to be able to play them with my friends) but the fact remains that 10% of the budget has, on the face of it, apparently provided an order of magnitude more playability for backers in the last 24 months.

Wasn't aware that Sq.42 was being made episodic, nor that episode 1 is due this year though, that is good news :). Just to ensure I'm not being a total dumbass, Sq.42 is co-op capable story-mode play, right, and not solely single player? It's the co-op multiplayer experience I'm most interested in for Star Citizen ^^;

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NumptyScrub
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Facepalm

Re: Sol Trader

So this is where I prove that NoScript can make you look like a tard on the internet; apparently the tiers are only visible when you allow scripts from kickstarter.com

I have no-one to blame but myself :'(

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NumptyScrub
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Re: Sol Trader

The Sol Trader page could do with discrete pledge levels so people can "just click button" to pledge (even just "£X - one copy of the game", "£Y - 2 copies of the game"). As is, I'm assuming that any pledge here is simply to fund the developer, and if it is produced I would then also need to purchase a copy of the game separately.

You'll note that all the big projects have a pretty obvious tiered pledge system, and that pledging for the big packs is not always cost effective, but does usually have some extra (even a trivial extra like "£200 - includes one copy of the game, and one crayon drawing made by my 2 year old").

You can see what you are getting for your money, and easily decide if it is worth it to you. People will happily pay over the odds for dumb stuff if it also supports a game they like the look of; I paid $90 for alpha access to Planetary Annihilation, £100 for beta access to E: D, and I'm considering paying $115 for a Cutlass / Freelancer pack for Star Citizen, and that is well over the odds considering $35 is all I would actually need to pay for the game.

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NumptyScrub
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Re: 14nd place?

They're in 14nd place with three million dollars. Where will eleventy million put them?

ith place? Or maybe I'm imagining it ^^;

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NumptyScrub
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Re: You crack me up, Mr. Pott

When you put your opinion into the public domain, you should have the cajones/backbone to back up that opinion when someone calls you on it.

Well, I'm willing to back up my opinions on the internets, and I've decided I like this asploding kittehs game enough to have just backed it myself. I'm also old, and have several decades of experience in games of board, card and dice.

So, what opinion of Senor Potts was it that you took umbrage with, so I can attempt to debate by proxy?

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Windows 10: The Microsoft rule-o-three holds, THIS time it's looking DECENT

NumptyScrub
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Pity This is my last "windoze" pc, all others here run xubuntu, which works, for free NOW .... 365 days a year, until crack of doom .... (or icebergs)

I'm pretty sure that 5 years (for the current LTS version) is not "the crack of doom". 5 years from now (or less) you will have to install a new version if you wan to continue to run a supported operating system.

You probably want the Mint Debian rolling distro if you don't want to have to install new versions every so often, that what I switched to ^^;

Last 3 "windoze" brought here by people, had 1500 virus/malware hits each, @ the point I formatted the crap & installed Xubuntu on them for those people,

Yeah ok you are a massively opinionated person. I support a few thousand Windows boxes for a living and if you set them up right they work fine and do the job they need to. It sounds like you have never experienced that, so I can only assume you have never seen them set up right in the first place.

If you want to talk about exploitable code that can get new users screwed over by malware, shall we start with a discussion on how Ubuntu (and thus Mint) now come with Flash Player as standard? o.O

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Thailand: 'The nail that sticks up gets hammered down'

NumptyScrub
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Oh, the old "Thai is tonal" gag. Thai has 5 tones, English has 6. Can you speak English?

I don't recall any English words with multiple meanings (like "down" or "render"), or English homonyms (like "there", "their", and "they're") having the meaning specified by the tone it is spoken in. In spoken English, meaning is determined by context alone, and tones are used purely for emphasis.

Does Thai really work the same way?

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NumptyScrub
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Re: I respect this ...

I think we need to be clear that, inasmuch there are 'nuances', these should not exist at the level of the IT professional, however senior or experienced. Judge says surveillance on those people there, IT professional says OK. Anybody else says surveillance on those people there, IT professional says NO.

Judge says "surveillance on all people at all times, because we can never be too careful also it is now the law". As intimated at the end of this interview, and also as intimated by the so called "snoopers charter" we'll be revisiting due to the Charlie Hebdo tragedy in Paris.

How does an IT professional answer that?

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Sorry, Qualcomm, Apple – your patents don't scare us

NumptyScrub
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Re: Inventing the IP ≠ Being The Bully

What exactly are Android devices if not a ripoff of Apple invented IP?

Why exactly is ripped off Apple invented IP called 'competition' against Apple? It's plagiarism.

Apple did not invent icons (that was Xerox PARC)

Apple did not invent touch screens (that was E. A. Johnson)

Apple did not invent touchscreen phones (that would be the IBM Simon)

Apple apparently did not invent the first "rounded corners" rectangular phone where the touchscreen was the main interface (that might be the LG Prada)

So please, enlighten me with exactly which "Apple invented IP" that Android ripped off? From here it looks like Android "copied" exactly the same other people's IP that Apple copied used to make the iPhone, but I'm willing to be corrected. :)

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Hoaxer posing as GCHQ boss prank-calls PM Cameron

NumptyScrub
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Re: Two very different incidents

But the handing out of a mobile number, whether classified or not, for any employee, let alone a senior one, is a serious security breach.

I'm expecting "prank calling" to be reclassified as "phone terrorism" at some point over the next few weeks, so that the perpetrator can be extraordinarily rendered (definition 18).

Also note that many employees put their mobile number in email signatures; those things sent plain text over the internet that anyone with a mail relay can intercept and read, not to mention programmatically parse for "M: <number>" or variations therein. You have to assume that anyone with an agenda already knows the phone numbers of most of your workforce, because it is fairly trivial to get hold of that information (you can even just buy a cold calling list or 2 and filter it for contact details for your own company, as a quick check of how much is out there already).

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