* Posts by alain williams

837 posts • joined 29 May 2007

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Microsoft's Windows 10 nagware goes FULL SCREEN in final push

alain williams
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Disability legislation

"blue on blue! Nobody can read that !"

I wonder if that makes the screen illegal under the UK's disability legislation -- re those who have poor sight.

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Jury awards US$3 BEEELION to HPE in Oracle/Itanium lawsuit

alain williams
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Porting software ...

Back in the days when many CPU types were common I used to regularly port software to new hardware, no big deal. OK: I needed to get the source in good shape (proper typedefs, etc) & once I ensured that I had got rid of all warnings when compiled with the Most Fussy option. All assuming decent compilers and a known operating system - which HP have got.

So why does Oracle, apparently, have a problem ? Their database already runs on several different platforms, so it can't be that hard. Agreed: every extra platform does involve more work, but it isn't as if they don't charge enough to cover that.

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Those Xbox Fitness vids you 'bought'? Look up the meaning of the word 'rent'

alain williams
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Re: Indeed...

I have an ongoing case against a UK based content streaming service ...

Do, please, let us know how you get on.

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Gartner: Brexit to wipe $4.6bn off tech spending in Blighty

alain williams
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In truth they haven't a clue ...

so why not wait a bit for the dust to settle ?

Oh, its Gartner: they make their living by puffing all sorts of reports and quietly forgetting the ones that are disasterously wrong.

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Mandarins plotted to water down EU data protection regs

alain williams
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Re: Big government is watching you

Data protection and employment protection were the the reasons that tipped me over the line to vote remain - I do not trust UK governments to not play fast and loose with that, to benefit political and big business ambitions.

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Germany: If Brits vote to Remain, we'll admit Hurst's 1966 goal was a goal

alain williams
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Re: See what can happen when you work together?

My head is spinning!

As is mine ... and the reason is that most of the politicians have said almost anything to get people to vote the way that they want us to; regardless of evidence or consistency with previous assertions.

They disagree even facts that should not be hard to verify; just call each other liars rather than try to agree numbers (possibly with error bars).

The result is that I will take whatever they say with a larger dose of salt than I have in the past. Seriously: when one of them pronounces on something in the future - who will believe them if they do not come out with good evidence with all the points carefully attributed to an unimpeachable source ?

Politicians have become the big losers in this campaign, it will take a long time before I trust them again.

Actually: I suspect that many have been reasonable, but (as a result) have lacked media attention and have thus been ignored. Thus I (falsely) denigrate all politicians due to the antics of a few.

*

But that rant does little to help me decide which way to vote. I might spoil my ballot in protest.

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Queensland creep cops charged with snooping through police records

alain williams
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What is rare about this ...

is that it has been exposed. A lot more like this happens but no one ever knows about them. The current spy's charter going through Parliament will make this harder to detect.

(OK: I know that this is OZ and not the UK, but cops/... are much the same the world over.)

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UK's education system blamed for IT jobs going to non-Brits

alain williams
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Who to outsource ?

It seems to me that the manager should have been outsourced rather than the engineer. Presumably also earning more than the engineer - so that would have resulted in an even greater saving!

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Energy companies aren't going to slurp your personal data. Honest

alain williams
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Nightly downloads ...

how long before someone at the energy company writes a script to find those who are using less electricity than usual - so probably away on holiday - pass that info to his mate Burglar Bill.

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Sneaky brown dwarf gives us a bright flash and astroboffins are confused

alain williams
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Re: It's obviously trying to start a fusion reaction...

It needs some obelisks.

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Brexit threatens Cornish pasty's racial purity

alain williams
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Champagne Cider

Several years ago some British cider makers sold what they called 'Champagne Cider'. The EU stopped them selling that - apparently confusing with something made with grapes in North East France.

If we leave the EU will they be able to market it again ? (In the UK/world, but not the EU).

Yes: the French would complain about their sour grapes - but would we care ?

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Get ready for Google's proprietary Android. It's coming – analyst

alain williams
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The more closed Android becomes ...

the more that I will worry that it will have MS Windows 10 style 'remote diagnostics'. Google is subject to the USA Patriot Act.

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You've got a patch, you've got a patch ... almost every Android device has a patch

alain williams
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Re: Good Luck on that...

My Samsung - stopped getting updates very quickly. I contacted them and was told that they had done a study and that what I was running was optimum for me -- or some similar bollocks; they had sold it and maintaining updates cost - so why bother ?

Their ideal customer is one who wants a new 'shiny' every year.

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Top EU data cop slams Safe Harbor replacement as inadequate

alain williams
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USA & standards ...

and when they start using the A and B paper sizes like all the rest of the world.

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Samsung: Don't install Windows 10. REALLY

alain williams
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So following that advice ...

Microsoft, knowing that the 'upgrade' to MS 10 will not work, will presumably not push the automatic upgrade out to Samsung machines. Or, maybe, if it does then MS will pay for someone to downgrade the machine again.

Oh, I thought not.

So: when we were told ''you are better off with Microsoft for their support than you are with Linux'' - what did they really mean ?

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Labour asks for more concessions on the UK's Snoopers' Charter

alain williams
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Sunset clause

Claims that they have to rush it through because of the sunset clause are yet more lies - they could quite easily get it extended by a year or so; but that would give time for proper debate - which is not wanted.

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Marketing by opt-in, opt-out, consent or legitimate interest?

alain williams
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Re: Marketing email

(iii) the ability to opt out at any time - I mean really opt out, not just some link that pretends to do that and, in reality, confirms that I am reading their spam.

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ISS 'nauts to inflate pump-up space podule

alain williams
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Initial testing

Presumably NASA before putting real live astronauts in this capsule will want to check that it works, is big enough, etc. I suppose that they will want to make it realistic, so are they also shipping up some plastic inflatable people for testing purposes ? I wonder what the astronauts will use them for once their testing job is done ?

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Airbus to build plane that's even uglier than the A380

alain williams
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Re: aerosexuals

Before I read the footnote I assumed that this referred to members of the mile high club.

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SHOCK: GM crops are good for you and the planet, reckon boffins

alain williams
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GM crops will happen, like it or not

A large part of the problem is that most people have an instinctive fear of new things - this is a good survival instinct. But it does not mean 'never touch' but 'proceed with caution'. This is what has been done by scientists who have tested them and not found them to be harmful to eat, thus we can use them for their benefits: increased yield, pest resistance, extra vitamins, ...

A large part of the problem are our vote grubbing politicians who see few votes in accepting them but don't want to lose the votes of the braying morons who call them 'frankenfoods'.

Having said that, we do need a labelling system so that the customer can make their mind up, maybe paying a premium for non GM. Something like the 'organic' tag would do nicely.

We do need to continue testing new ones; we only know that the ones that we have tested do us no harm, when shuffling genes from widely different organisms we can end up with the unexpected, in a way that millennia of selective breeding has not done.

We need to use the benefits of GM crops to help feed the world, but must realise that unless we stop population growth no amount of future GM advances will stop people going hungry.

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Microsoft .NET Core update asks developers: How you doin'?

alain williams
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''not include personal data''

I thought that the myth that you need to collect a name to know who is using something had been laid to rest a long time ago.

If it is truely open source, how long before someone releases it with the default to no spying \w telemetry?

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The Windows 10 future: Imagine a boot stamping on an upgrade treadmill forever

alain williams
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Re: So...

and when there finding that RedHat/CentOS is supported for 10 years - which means that existing applications will not be broken by OS patches for a decade.

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Nuisance caller fined a quarter of a million pounds by the ICO

alain williams
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Of course they go into liquidation ...

just like dodgy builders. The only way of stopping this is to go after the owners.

This is, I think, a civil offence otherwise they could use the 2002 proceeds of crime act.

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Inside Electric Mountain: Britain's biggest rechargeable battery

alain williams
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Battery or capacitor

What word does the man in the street understand ? To most 'capacitor' means nothing, but he well understands what a rechargeable battery is all about.

Not everyone here is techie enough to understand 'capacitor'.

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Researcher arrested after reporting pwnage hole in elections site

alain williams
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Gary McKinnon

This is what the USA govt was trying to do to Gary: shoot the messenger.

The 'crime' that they are worried about is causing embarrassment by showing that their system administrators are incompetent.

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Google-backed Yieldify has acquired IP from ‘world’s biggest patent troll’

alain williams
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Bought for offense or defense ?

Were the patents bought to hit other companies with or to stop google being a target ? The article was not clear to me.

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Woman charged with blowing AU$4.6m overdraft on 'a lot of handbags'

alain williams
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How do I get that unlimited overdraft ?

Then can you tell me when the next flight to Rio leaves.

Or: these days is it not Rio but Panama or somewhere else - please advise.

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Another failed merger, Carly? Ted Cruz to bring in ex-HP boss Fiorina as running mate

alain williams
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Re: Cruz and Carly?

It looks as if there will be a contest between Trump and Clinton. Of the two Clinton would frighten me most, so I would favour Trump.

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Colander-wearing Irishman denied driver's licence in Pastafarian slapdown

alain williams
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Where he must wear the colander ...

Shurely he should point out that the ultra-orthodox pastafarians believe the holy colander(*) is only to be worn at home?

In that case he does not need to wear the colander for his driving license - unless he lives in a motor-home.

Surely everyone can see that a colander is a holey item!

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Microsoft headhunters seek Linux folk for secret open source unit

alain williams
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API Shim

I would like that - it would mean that all laptop hardware would have a Linux driver that worked (or at least provided by the manufacturer, so could be improved on).

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Official: EU goes after Google, alleges it uses Android to kill competition

alain williams
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Alternate operating systems

with a bit of luck this will open up phones so that it will be easier to either order them with a different OS or install one - so things like CyanogenMod will become more common and easier to install.

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They Came From Beyond Our Galaxy And Landed In The Ice!

alain williams
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Brexit

I am waiting for some politician to tell us that we have less to fear from this if we leave the EU, or maybe that we will be able to get them from anywhere and ignore 2,000 pages of EU rules on neutrino quality.

It would make as much sense as the other things that they are saying.

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Brexit would pinch UK tech spend but the EU wouldn't care – survey

alain williams
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There is so much bollocks ...

being spouted as truth by both sides of this that I am struggling to not switch the radio off when discussion starts.

This is a shame as it is important, but the 'debate' seems to be more a matter of using dubious extrapolations to beat up emotional froth. Finding hard facts or good analysis is almost impossible.

Politicians: a pox on the lot of them !

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UK web host 123-Reg goes TITSUP, customer servers evaporate

alain williams
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I left them years ago ...

I used to use them as a DNS tag holder, but departed after yet another screw up. Some companies you learn to avoid.

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Flying Spaghetti Monster is not God, rules mortal judge

alain williams
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The judge will soon be in hot water ...

to which tomatoes, spices, herbs and all manner of tasty things are added as he is slowly cooked to become a pasta sauce.

That will teach him!

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How to not get pwned on Windows: Don't run any virtual machines, open any web pages, Office docs, hyperlinks ...

alain williams
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I am told ...

that keeping it switched off keeps it secure.

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Feature-rich Vivaldi rolls out, offering power users a choice

alain williams
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Been using for a bit

as a secondary browser. Can be nice to have something different when debugging web pages (javascript). I also use it as a browser where I regularly trash all remembered data (cookies, etc) when I can't be bothered working out what I need to enable with adblocker, etc, to see some site.

I can't understand why they want to put an IMAP client in it .... it is a web browser; please stop the bloat!

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UK Home Office seeks secret settlements over unlawful DNA retention

alain williams
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Documents not deleted ...

just been moved to Panama

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UK.gov watchdog growls at firms that pass off advertorials as real opinions

alain williams
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Nothing new with web sites

this sort of thing has happened for years in print (newspapers) - and still does. Advertise enough and you get to write your own articles, or at least heavily influence them.

Something that this will not stop is suppression of stories, I remember many years ago talking to a local newspaper about a local shop who had rooked us, it never went anywhere - they were honest enough to admit that they did not want to risk their weekly adverts.

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Bash on Windows. Repeat, Microsoft demos Bash on Windows

alain williams
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How complete will it be ?

I wonder if someone will be able to port and run WINE into this environment.

Why ? Because it should be possible!

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Adblock wins in court again – this time against German newspaper

alain williams
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£15bn in advertising revenue was lost

I think that the correct wording must have been lost in translation from German, surely it should have been ''£15bn was saved by companies in useless advertising costs''

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Closing courts to fling £700m at digital stand-ins will fail, MPs snarl at UK.gov

alain williams
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Totally barmy

This was talked about a couple of times in El-Reg in 2014, one here. The Ministry of Justice is sending 65,000 jobs to India. This is simply stupid:

a) Data protection. A lot of very sensitive information going overseas - what could possibly go wrong ?

b) Loss of skills in the UK, helping another country get skills.

c) Look at the numbers: save "£100m over the next few years" - that means 10 years. So, £10m a year.

The cost - 65,000 jobs[**].

£10m/65k = £154.

So, MoJ is saving £154/year for every job lost to the UK economy. It might save MoJ, but UK Plc loses big time.

An analogy would be: a plumber getting in another plumber to fix his bathroom tap as the other plumber has a B&Q discount card & so can buy the washer more cheaply - the job still ends up costing the householder plumber more.

[**] That is jobs paid for by MoJ - there will be other jobs lost in: infrastructure suppliers, office cleaners, ...

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Three-bit quantum gate a step closer to universal quantum computer

alain williams
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BBQ ?

Am I the only one who sees two components on the left hand side labelled 'BBQ' ?

I think that this is the result of too much Fosters at barbies over the Easter weekend!

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Comms 'redlining' in Brussels as explosions kill up to 30 people

alain williams
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I lived in London in the 1970's ...

when the IRA set off dozens of bombs. We got on with life without the current brouhaha. Yes: it was occasionally inconvenient and a few people got killed, including an MP (Airey Neave).

We were not terrorised because we did not let it dominate or significantly change our lives.

Today: the recent governments are reacting badly, causing/attempting changes (no liquids on air-planes, snooping, ID cards, ...) It is them who are doing the terrorist's work for them.

I looked up how many incidents in London, remarkable that the IRA was responsible for far, far more in the 70's to 90's than ''Islamic terrorists'' in the last few years.

So: why is the government trying to get us to cower under the kitchen table ?

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Labour: We want the Snoopers' Charter because of Snowden

alain williams
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Re: A necessary evil?

This is, of course, a good argument against Brexit - Brussels will probably torpedo this assault on our liberty, which our spineless parliament proposes to rubber-stamp.

I was wavering - your comment clinches it, I'll vote to stay in.

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Lessons from history for UK Home Sec Theresa May's Investigatory Powers Bill

alain williams
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Unworkable law - when has that stopped them in the past ? You can present them with all the evidence backed information that you want - they will simply ignore it and do what they want.

I just wish I knew why they are doing this ? Is it megalomania ?

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Swedish publishers plan summer ‘Block Party’ to thwart ad blockers

alain williams
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Temporary permissions

Sometimes a bit fiddly when I have to give temporary permissions to sites/domains in order to make something specific work.

Easy: I run a different browser with no controls at all. I will use it to see something if tweaking settings seems as if it will take more than a few seconds. After viewing I clear all private data (cookies, etc) and view something else. Not perfect, but easy.

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Only 12% of UK thinks Snoopers' Charter is 'adequately explained'

alain williams
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Impact explained ?

It is the need that I want explained... and please don't bring out the tired rubbish about: paedophiles, terrorists, drug barons and master criminals - we have heard that all before and it does not hold water; yes: they may catch a few low hanging fruit (the simpletons); but the big boys are not going to stop using good encryption just because it becomes illegal - that is even assuming that we are really at real risk from these people or that open-to-government encryption will let them be stopped.

So: why does she want it? She is either stupid or has some other, hidden, purpose.

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Australia to capture biometrics at the border under new law

alain williams
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Another country will soon be ...

on my no-visit list.

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Microsoft adds 'non-security updates' to security patches

alain williams
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Re: It didn't happen to me

Yesterday I was teaching Javascript, delegates ran a mix of Apple and MS Windows machines. Someone's PC (running MS Windows) decided to update and was unusable for 1.5 hours. The lady just accepted it - 'it happens'.

How on earth are you supposed to run a business when some of the kit randomly goes on strike ?

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