265 posts • joined 19 May 2010
Re: Of course it won't get rid of MS
'I've no evidence to support this, but I suspect the vast majority of users don't use Macros and other fiddly bits in their day to day ops (we certainly don't) and wouldn't notice the difference.'
Does this mean that OO and other ODF based products are now capable of tracking document changes and presenting it as markup? That was the biggest problem that we had in my old company and why a lot of people didn't use the ODF products, they could not support the monitoring of text changes in documents which in organisations which collaboratively work on them is a bit of bind. Of course the move nowadays is to collaborative document editing in the Cloud which while clever is not always an effective use of people's time.
Hmm Interesting Position
"Following widespread concern from digital civil liberties groups, who believe that profit-making companies should not be making judgments about what is in the public interest at all...."
I assume that these people obviously also disagree with the newspapers and other media outlets all of whom determine what is in the public interest when deciding their editorial policy. Of course it could be argued that Google is not making such a decision as they only provide the link to another publisher who has already decided that publishing the information is a matter of public interest (well at least at the time they published it) therefore in reality it is the requestor and not Google who is determining whether or not something is in the public interest by asking for the link to be removed on the basis it is no longer in the public interest.
Perhaps people should stop and think this whole thing through a bit better than the judges who still think Androids are called Marvin and act pretty miserable.
On the other hand
Is this how they plan to overcome the costs of deploying fast broadband to the expensive users , by deploying LTE wireless routers in the home and doing away with fixed line communications in their entirety?
How to stop PPI calls & SMS
Banks & Govt agree that no claim for PPI made by a third party on behalf of an individual will be dealt with but that the Bank must contact the individual directly (with their information being provided by intermediary to the Bank for free) to determine if compensation is payable.
Thus the individual claim will still be dealt with but the pariah firms who rip people off wouldn't get a penny
Not all shareholders.....
Demand their pound of flesh from IBM.
The bigger issue from my perspective as a shareholder is that the board's incentive scheme for the directors is focussed solely on increasing the dividend to shareholders. This means that the directors don't care about whether the company grows in financial terms only whether they can generate sufficient free cash to pay the shareholders and earn themselves huge buckets of dollars.
I think that this focus on returns to shareholders is driven by the directors and has nothing to do with the demands of Wall St. IBM's directors are in this business for one purpose alone, to make as much money as they personally can at the expense of the staff and the company.
Re: @Russell Hancock
But if the power cut was local, i.e. the fuse blew for the circuit that the socket was on, then he could simply have said I got up and fixed the fuse.
The obligation to prove guilt lies with the prosecution so defence would not have had to provide anything, the prosecution would need to show that the fuse didn't blow or that he got up to fix it during the night when he claimed he was asleep, etc.
And finally, I bet the charging information is on the phone and therefore not something GSHQ or NSA need to force the ISP/phone company to keep. It probably also has a set size so wipes entries to maintain space.
Re: Get a grip
To the best of my knowledge I have never committed a crime in the UK but I have made a number of political points on the internet. Why does the Govt need to have my ISP retain my metadata other than to monitor my political leanings and writings? Seems to me the Govt is in breach of my right to privacy there.
In addition the retention is not to prevent or deter crime rather it is a blunt instrument which would allow individuals to be identified who may well use UK telecommunication links to post online about their own countries. The retention of their metadata will allow countries such as Iran, Norks and others to identify those users (by hacking ISPs, seeking legal injunctions, etc) and take action against them. Therefore rather than deterring crime it is actually in a position to potentially improve the capability of foreign countries to act against their opponents in the UK in criminal ways. Or even domestic criminals who can look to trace people in the witness protection scheme.
Nick Clegg = Idiot
Just goes to show how thick Nick Clegg is, no Parliament is bound by the laws passed by a predecessor. Therefore all that happens is next Govt renews legislation in 2015, immediately after election, removing "poisoned pill" and hey presto its in place forever. As Nick and his mates won't be around in 2015 having received insufficient votes to elect an MP, the party in power will get its own way by enforcing three line whip to and threatening to link anyone who refuses to vote with the party line that they will make public dirt that the whip's office has on them.
Better to have the arguments about this legislation now while no party can force through this type of legislation instead of waiting until that is no longer an option.
And Edward Snowden looked down...
on his revelations and realised that in giving the game away for the UK and UK he had set in motion an onslaught of domestic regulation in many countries of the world determined to be able to do the same thing to their own citizens as the US and UK. And Edward thought "what a stupid f********r I have been". Or he would do if he was as bright as he thought he was.
Sometimes you have to accept that something wrong may need be tolerated in order to prevent something worse happening. The reality was once countries woke up to the fact that the US and UK were monitoring data stored in the local data centres and all the traffic coming in and out, they would all want to do it especially those with a poor record in relation to citizen privacy in the first place.
I suppose we can't blame him in for this directly but his revelations will have given ideas to those despots who are not particularly strong in new technology and they will not be out shopping for the hardware and software to do this.
Sorry but your post highlights your lack of knowledge about the NHS. Many of the products used within the NHS are niche, designed for a specific purpose and crucial to saving lives. I am not saying that the NHS does not use standard Microsoft products since they do but, Sourceforge and the general FOSS community do not produce applications that can be used to manage the millions of x-ray images that are generated every year, nor do they supply the pharmacetical patient records that are required to ensure people don't get the wrong medication. The cost of replacing these applications with FOSS based products would not only wide out any licence savings in respect of MS products but would also take some considerable time to produce. In the meantime people would die.
People who see the move to FOSS as the cure all for technology woes and Microsoft dominance do so through their own rose tinted glasses. The problem is that when you get down to it any migration of the Microsoft product set is beset by difficulties and additional costs to the organisation going that route.
An example from my own experience can be found in moving to Open Office since that product was unable to deal with tracking changes to the documents I authored which meant undertaking reviews was slow and complex when compared to the simple (if flawed) Microsoft track changes functionality.
How long before.....
someone hacks their systems and nicks all the coins??
Snowden is neither a whistleblower or hero
Snowden revealed what most people believed anyway so he wasn't a whistleblower. A whistleblower discloses what you don't know and cannot guess for example that the tobacco industry knew in the 50s that cigarettes killed people.
As for a hero; well let's think about that he spilled the beans on an employer who he had a contract with (breach of contract is a civil offence) and damaged the national security of both the UK & US (he may claim there has been no damage but he is not really in a position to judge sitting outside of those countries) and that is a criminal offence. On top of this his disclosure is unilateral and one sided in scope which means that Russia, China and Israel amongst many others now have a lot of detail of how the US and UK spy on them but the UK and US have no public visibility of how those countries are spying on us (not I don't say them because the likelihood is that those countries also undertake mass surveillance of both their own citizens and the citizens of other countries).
As for his defence that he went through the official channels at NSA to complain about what he believed where breaches of the law, does no one stop to wonder why the e-mails he claims to have sent have not been produced by the newspapers who supplied this material too? Surely he took a copy of his own e-mail file? But then perhaps the reality is as the NSA says, he never uttered a word to them.
I hate the idea that I am being spied on and I also dispute that you can spot patterns in the general population without having at least one person in whom you are interested but at the same time I dislike people who claim the high moral ground when actually they are simply a spy for the other side whether deliberately or by accident.
Please note this is not an AC post.
At the end of the day countries will still need DTT for the simple fact that millions of people cannot get a 4G signal and the 3G they get is pretty crap too and that is just in the UK.
What no termination for convenience clause!!
Simply amazed, no clause in the contract that says the police can cancel the contract for convenience and pay a sum for that privilege that is less than the final value of the contract (e.g. covers lost profit but not cost of staff). This is a standard in pretty much every public sector contract I have come across.
"Satellite is good for when you're stuck miles away from civilisation (eg; Amazon Jungle, Sahara Desert)" or when you live in a village in England that is only 2 miles from a town with fibre broadband or in the Highlands of Scotland or even in Wales.
Believe me satellite is slowly becoming an attractive option to those of us who don't live in places where BT need to compete with Virgin because despite all the bull, the reality is that BT are only looking to compete with Virgin and Sky and all the money in the worl (or even half a billion pounds) is not enough to get them to deploy fibre outside of small towns.
Another "stop picking on the rich" article
having read my earlier post I realised it did not communicate what I was trying to get across so withdrew it, Hopefully better second time around.
This article is typical of those who try to draw attention away from the facts; the rich are getting richer and the poor poorer both on an income and wealth basis. It is that widening gap that Picketty is trying to show and actually achieve in his book.
By using the word "benefits" the author is seeking to suggest that only the poor will benefit from state handouts perhaps saying Govt assistance might even the field because when use different language people start to think about tax breaks and financial assistance given to the rich as well as the income supplements and replacements that constitute "benefits". Who remembers all those rich people making huge financial returns because the govt did not tax tree plantations the same as other assets?
Wealth is measured on the basis of its economic utility. The NHS and state pension cannot be converted to cash since removing the NHS would not necessarily result in a fall in taxation and the state pension paid from general taxation has no underlying value only that which can be received at the point in time it is paid (and in most instances is an income replacement benefit).
The rich on the other hand have wealth that can be readily converted to cash. Selling the farm is swapping an asset for cash, as is selling shares. The liquidity means that the rich can move their money in to investments and activities that deliver a better rate of return which means that their wealth will always increase unless they make stupid investments. This is not an option available to people at the bottom who do not have the surplus income to get in to the wealth generation business nor to procure the services of those who will happily reduce the amount of tax an individual pays.
The author of this article is trying to defend the the indefensible, an increasing wealth gap is not good for society (as Czar Nicholas) there needs to be some sort of steady state position whereby there is a gap but it is not seen as unfair or subject to material change over long periods which is the problem today. One only has to look at the US to see even the mega wealthy there are concerned about this growing inequality in both wealth and income. Sensible people see the risks and want to address them. Foolish people write articles that try to hide the truth by distraction in an effort to continue the current trend.
What a non-article
Lets have some basics here. North Korea is a pariah state in the eyes of western nations but that does not mean it is not a nation in the eyes of others. North Korea has a major ally who is also its biggest trading partner, it is called China. Who is the world's biggest producer of cheap electornics due to its large industrious low paid workforce, that's it, China a country which is not regarded as a pariah state despite the fact that its treatment of its populace is not exactly a million miles from the way North Korea treats its.
Now the big news, American corporate giants and those companies of other western nations who want to produce goods cheaply to sell at vast margins (talking about you here Apple) to customer's around the world, all buy their electronics in China.
I am amazed that anyone felt they had to do this research as it is abundantly clear that North Korean resources were likely to be used. In fact I would not be surprised to find out that Foxconn workers each rice produced in North Korea and that the slightly radioactive paint for watch dials used in the Chinese watch industry is also produced in North Korea in a factory next to where they test their nuclear weapons.
Re: So how did EE manage to launch 4G?
They only launched 4G in selected areas (mainly large cities). By minimizing the likely market for customers they have managed to control the growth of data throughput thus reducing their current requirement for increased fibre bandwidth.
Once someone actually deploys a nationwide 4G network (which is Vodafone and O2s plan) the demand for data backhaul will increase exponentially with each new user added to the network since they will want access everywhere and not just in Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, London, etc.
Not quite true either
BT made a significant investment in fibre in the main conurbations of the UK alongside Virgin's established network and has continued to make that investment in an attempt to a)compete against Virgin and b)to establish its own fibre monopoly in areas where Virgin are absent (although it does sell access to that fibre to other suppliers). No other telco has made anywhere near the investment BT has made in fibre.
Where government funding has come into play is in the rural (or allegedly rural) areas of the UK but even here BT still has to provide funding as part of the work.
Therefore the original poster is probably more accurate; BT has made a major investment in fibre and others have sat on their hands and waited to see what happens. They have then sought to prevent BT recovering a high margin on their investment by calling for price regulation on something that they could have done themselves but didn't bother to do.
Re: Sales Proficiencies
Back in the '80s there was talk of developing what were called hybrid managers to work in IT. These would be senior people who would bridge the gap between the business and this new place called the IT department. Regrettably the only companies who have actually managed to implement this model of the IT companies themselves. Companies like Google and Amazon (and yes I do see Amazon as an IT company).
Meantime the rest of the business world has looked at IT and identified that it can be used to get rid of people, do things faster whilst reducing the costs and as something they HAVE to do but don't really understand why. Security however is not something they understand unless it has a value associated with it that lets them see why it is important. For example if you have a warehouse full of goods that will be sold the value of paying £7 - £8 per hours for a security guard is a good security investment (value of lost goods minus guards salary = profit).
The same is also true for IT security lost value of company strategy minus cost of computer security equals profit. Exposure of company strategy plus head start of competitors = big loss. These are simple conversations and should be straightforward to have. Why we don't have them is strange because I can guarantee that every company worth its salt is currently getting its lawyers to include clauses in contracts that say if the supplier is responsible they will accept unlimited liability for data loss.
Re: Sales Proficiencies (@ Don Jefe)
You must have a lot of fun when abroad, tell me do you shout loudly whilst speaking slowly?
The board is full of people who think they know about business and their focus is on making money (allegedly for the shareholders but predominantly for them). The company (business) is their country and IT is the foreigner so the foreigner needs to learn to talk their language not the other way round.
Re: No appetite
So their risk appetite is to avoid all risk. There see they do have a risk appetite whether they know it or not. Everyone has a risk appetite just because they don't know what it means does not mean it doesn't exist.
The next step is to point out to them that they cannot avoid all risk (it is an impossibility as Donald Rumsfeld who said it all when talking about the unknown risks that we don't know about rather than the unknown risks we do).
Next point out that a failure to address security will allow someone to steal all their money leaving them with a set of accounts that the auditors won't sign off on.
Finally write to the company auditors explaining where the security risks are in the financial systems and watch the fireworks start.
Working Time Directive
According to the article this does not apply in the UK, sorry but that is very wrong (ask junior doctors). The directive applies and the time is calculated over a three month period however, individuals can elect under the UK implementation to waive their rights in this area so that they are not bound by the directive.
In my experience most people have "opted out" without actually knowing they had the right to be covered by the directive.
As to most of the posts on this article - lots of very biased individuals out there with their own stereotypes in mind from which they don't appear to want to move. Public sector is not an easy place to work for contractors, staff or outsourcer and I know having been on all sides of the fence.
Then again have seen the easy life in private business as well as the stress and strains that go with it. Funnily enough I find that the world is different in every single organisation I work in.
BT must be loving this deal
I live in a small village of about 400 houses and businesses. Our local Duke has fibre to the premises which he paid for (lucky him, inherited wealth is so useful) while the rest of us are stuck with a maximum speed of 3mbps before the everyone finds out and piles on at which point it starts to fall (rapidly) to less than 2mbps. However because BT can provide upto 2mbps to the village we have been carved out of the local broadband plan.
Our local council sought out lots of ideas and feedback for their local superfast broadband plan a couple of years ago. I happily said I would pay up to £30 per month for fast (not even super) BB. Now they have published the plan and oh my all those small market towns of a couple of thousand properties and more being built every day are all due to get the upgrade. The fact that Virgin also has fibre in those towns can't have anything to do with it I suppose (ROFL).
Our village is further away from its exchange than it is from a small nearby town that has superfast broadband with FTTC. The cost of laying in some fibre from that exchange to the village and the green cabinets we have here should be fairly cheap but no, the local plan which is a partnership with two biggish towns means that we get bugger all. The two biggish towns are subsidising BT to install broadband in areas where there is already a reasonably strong economic argument to do the work anyway.
BT are telling the customer want they can have and ignoring what the customer wants/needs. Such an approach is OK where the customer budget is insufficient to provide what they want/need but in this instance it is wrong. Local councils should be prioritising those places they know BT cannot install to without a subsidy and BT should be paying in the more economic locations. But as usual councils are scared BT will walk away if they exercise their rights.
Re: Could competition have worked?
And the problem with that solution is that you find yourself needing to swap providers every year as all your neighbours pile on to the provider with the best performance.
I watched my TalkTalk service go from good to OK to very poor indeed. Switched to BT which was very good, has no gone to OK and by next year will be pretty awful.
While changing suppliers is straightforward it is a right pain and I don't want to be switching suppliers every year, I want to make use of the broadband.
No contract drafting required
On G-Cloud there is no need for the supplier to draft a contract that already exists in terms of the Call Off agreement. The suppliers only need to add specific terms and conditions for their offering as well as a service description and day rates (if required).
Most small suppliers are not in a position to negotiate changes to Govt contracts and to be honest most of the so called oligopoly are unable to get any material changes to the terms of such contracts. So everyone is shafted by the onerous terms and the need for everyone to be SC cleared even when cleaning windows from the outside.
Re: We want action @Mad Mike
What on earth makes you think he'll end up in Guantanamo? That's the last place they will put him. There are lots of other places that we don't know about within easy reach of a learjet that they can send him.
What the hell is negative wealth? Is it what people used to call debt? If you have £30K of student debt that is not wealth. You may regard it as an investment in an asset (a university degree) which may or may not result in an improvement in your overall wealth such that the debt is repaid but which ever way you look at it, debt is still debt.
With respect to the taxation of the rich, yes they are taxed in order to pay pensions, for the NHS, defence, policing, etc. But only partially for the benefit of the poorer people in society since believe it or not the availability of pensions, NHS, defence and policing et al is also provided to the rich and let's be clear the poor earning about a certain level also contribute to this at a level that is disproportionate to their income.
Oxfam are right to exclude the pensions and NHS plus all the other state provided elements of wealth from their calculation as these net out at zero in terms of value to all parties (rich and poor). The loss of paying for these items is however far greater for the poor whereas the value of state welfare is far more valuable the wealthy; think tax breaks for buying trees, not using farmland, investing in commercial property, etc. Also think about the tax breaks available for investing in other commercial ventures which mean you get the double whammy of reduced tax and potentially large investment returns.
As for the absurd statement that it is logical that 5 families own more of the UK's wealth than some 20% of the population, why is that logical? Why should it not be 5% of the UK has more wealth than the bottom 20%?
Redistribution of wealth is a bigger driver of progress than ownership by a few will ever be. Those at the bottom should and normally are always striving to improve their lot thus creating demand for goods and services primarily met by large scale industrialization and thus generation of employment and wealth. Those at the top always seem to be seeking greater returns thus generating more automation resulting in fewer jobs or paying of lower wages thus cutting consumption and reducing employment although not necessarily so in the country of low wages.
Wealth inequality will always exist it is something that cannot be changed but the question that Oxfam is really asking is to what should that level of inequality be; where those at the bottom have to rely on charity to feed themselves whilst the rich can pay over the odds for a tin of tuna? or should the inequality be reduced where all people are able to feed themselves to an acceptable level without having to go in to "negative wealth"?
Desperation creeping in!
Can't see any legs in this one. The Bank would have had to know the customers in order to segregate their cash. As thebank's customer was Mt Gox can't see how Mr Greene would have been known to them therefore to remote from the claim and thus no chance of winning.
Bit confused here....
Reporters without Borders says that:
The placement on the list puts the US and UK into a rather dubious group of nations that have been called out for censoring web access and cracking down on journalists.
So let's see the Guardian and other papers in the UK as well as various newspapers in the US have all been happily printing the press releases provided by Edward Snowden about how much spying is going on. Yet any other country on that so called list plus the majority of the others that are not on it would probably have shut down such newspapers, imprisoned the owners and probably shot the journalists. Please explain to me how spying on the citizens (and the extent to which the Govt actually looks at the citizens information is still unclear) equates to attacking and harming journalists.
I also note that like most trade unions or protective organisations there is no mention of those journalists who willingly print, present or communicate the lies and flummery of their own county's governments. For example are the journalists working for China State TV highlighted in their report as gang of toadies who will lie for money?
The whole issue of GCHQ and NSA is criminal in my view and without merit. As I have previously pointed out without actually having someone to watch looking for patterns in a massive load of data is probably worthless. But report such as this really piss me off as they are politically and emotionally biased in this instant in respect of two countries that actually do have, to the extent that it is reasonably possible in an imperfect world, a free press where journalists can go about their daily activities (phone tapping, processing stolen materials, snapping unsuspecting celebities in the street, etc) without fear of arrest or persecution (unless caught going about their daily activities).
For me there is a basic question
Why are Plusnet users not using the Plusnet provided routers? Is it because they weren't provided with one, or perhaps the one they had is some what ancient and could really have done with a replacement when the owner extended their contract with Plusnet?
Trying to get users to do something more technical then plugging in the router in the first place is a waste of time and money. As the old adage goes "if you want something doing, do it yourself". Perhaps all ISPs should think about their strategy around routers and perhaps look at the cost benefit analysis of doing a users router replacement every other contract extension. Wouldn't stop the problem but might mitigate it.
Jobs, efficiency, better living: Bull.....
The real money in the IoT is the advertising. Smart Meter, lets you be flooded with lots of ads about better deals, milk run out; get ready for a slew of ads recommending healthier calcium delivery systems.
If the IoT becomes a reality my advice is buy Google and ad company shares because they, like mobile gaming, are likely to be the only people making any money out of this.
Why prosecute anyone?
I think people need to step back on this and think through why the BPAS was fined:
In accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 the Data Controller (BPAS) as responsible for putting in place appropriate organisational and technical processes and protections to avoid the information that they have collected being obtained by third parties unlawfully or as a result of the Data Controllers negligence. BPAS failed to comply with any part of this legislation. The fine is therefore imposed for what could be considered criminal negligence if such a term existed in English law.
The purpose of punishment under law is to a)ensure some form of retribution against the breaching person/organisation; b)to warn others who may be considering or already committing the same offence; c)to support a public policy objective (in this case to encourage others to protect the data they collect); and d) to show the general public that they are enforcing the laws fairly and unequivocally against all breaching persons or parties.
On the basis of the arguments presented on here no-one should be prosecuted of fined if no one has been injured even if the law has been broken. Would certainly save on court and legal aid costs as we wouldn't bother prosecuting people who go out and try to murder people but fail (no harm done then).
Re: Changing times
Based on past and extremely current experience I agree wholeheartedly with your view. You should also include customers who commit to dates before asking their suppliers if it is feasible to meet them.
Actually putting something in to Escrow should concern any business
The idea that Escrow is a safety net is rubbish. If my firm goes bust the administrator has to be able to sell the assets to meet the company's debts. If the source code is in escrow and the customer or customers gain access to it and can get a third party to use and maintain it then my biggest asset (as a software company) is totally lost and the one thing that the administrator could have sold becomes worthless since any buyer of the company will not be in a position to seek software licences or support and maintenance fees from my customers.
Escrow may help the customer but it certainly shafts the developers and their debtors.
If you get a photographer to take a family photo do you own the IP? If you get an architect to draft a design for an extension do you own the IP? The answer is no they retain the copyright in their original works which they have spent time and money in developing skills to develop so that they can create them.
Any company that creates unique ideas or products has invested in training, education, obtaining experience and a lot of other activities so as to give themselves a competitive edge in a competitive marketplace. Companies and particularly government departments do not pay enough for the services that they they receive to take ownership of the IP by default. There are however times when a company may agree to transfer IP to customer but that is in specific instances where there good and justifiable reasons to do so e.g. unique to a specific customer or in the interests of national security.
However, even in those restricted circumstances a company is still entitled to ensure that the customer only allows future suppliers to use the IP solely for the provision of services to that one customer and not to take it, commercialise it and flog it to other customers without ever actually having paid for or otherwise done anything material to contribute to its development.
The proper question is what law was to apply to the contract that the parties entered in to and what jurisdiction was any legal action subject to? Many companies overseas will often enter into contracts under the law of a third party nation and seek to take legal action there. For example shipping companies and their clients will often sign up to contracts under English law and subject to the jurisdiction of the courts in London. Once the case is decided the winning party has a lever under which it can enforce the outcome in a local court since justice systems are often reluctant to ignore such decisions.
In this instant Mr Green needs to tell the his local court what his contract states. If there is no contract then the court will determine whether on the basis of the facts of the transaction it has jurisdiction to hear a claim. If there is a contract then Mr Green will be advised to follow the terms of the contract he signed.
Re: Aren't these couple of loons...
No the author pointed out that climate change is an innate part of the nature of this world upon which we live (otherwise the last ice age would still be with us). The extent to which anthropogenic climate change is a factor in the current rate of climate change is something that still needs to be determined. However there is overwhelming evidence to show that human activity does have some impact on climate (otherwise acid rain would be an imaginary weather condition).
I would have thought this was a question of size or boasting to be honest rather than one of gender.
(Bad joke alert)
I think the idea
was to share with other govt agencies not to let some bloke pick and choose the most embarrassing intel to share with the media.
Bit confused here
My simple understanding of economics says that a country's currency is backed by a)its economy, b)the stability imbued by people's confidence in the currency and c) it can be impacted by creating too much money.
Bitcoin is constrained by the amount of coins that can be generated in any given period (23 per 10 minutes) and the number generated is halved every so often and finally (according to Wikipedia) the total number of coins cannot exceed 21 million. So where is the value being driven from? All I can see is that the low number of coins is driving the value. This suggests to me that the whole thing is a bit of bubble since the nice thing about electronic money making schemes is that people get bored (who remembers the land millionaires in Second Life?).
The other problem is that whilst the exchange rate is $900/coin the actual holders of the currency do not actually have access to 12 million time $900 in ready cash (since not all coins are sold at the value) nor assets to support that kind of cash demand.. This means that the currency has no support from an asset base which traditional currencies do, cause for concern?
Finally, apart from those who own coins or are trying to make money by trading the coins, there appears to be no overall confidence in the currency which would also appear to make it weak in strength since it only takes one major rumour to cause on run on those who exchange the coins for dollars.
I have fashion statements and Bitcoin certainly seems to be one.
Re: A stitch in time
Sorry but that is unjustified criticism of the situation.
What is happening is that the large telcos are reviewing the regulations that are being presented and challengine minor technical points of law. Like everything in this world that has to do with judgements there will always be differences of opinion between parties as to the meaning of certain terms, phrases or sentences and in terms of regulations, those disputes must be resolved in a legal environment (i.e. tribunals in this instant).
I work with legal contracts everyday and spend a lot of my time agreeing with customers the meaning of specific clauses in order to ensure that both parties have a common understanding of the "intent" of the clause in order to avoid disputes later down the line. When those contracts deal with complex issues there will often be much discussion about the intent of both parties in the wording that is being proposed.
With respect to OFCOM I suggest that they add the traditional statement, that the regulations apply until or unless found to be illegal or void by a competent court or tribunal. That would put the rules in place first and any challenge would only be effective if it was found to be valid by the courts. Many of the current challenges are often lost by the telcos but the delays the claim introduces is of benefit to them. Remove the benefit and it may well prove it also gets rid of many of the claims.
Re: Look you have all taken this the wrong way.
Sorry, have to reject your comment on the pork swording. As with everything in the spying world the issue will always be who is doing the pork swording and who is their neighbour. Diana shagging James Hewitt likely to be a big thing for the security services. You shagging Mrs Cameron next door would probably be of interest if you both live in Oxfordshire or Downing Street.
Knowledge of pork swording is I am afraid to say a nice bit of leverage for the spies of any country especially if one of the parties later moves in to a role that would be of interest.
That said unless your posting pictures or videos it is unlikely that the spies will ever find out since pattern matching algorithms and intelligence analysis of phone calls and internet mails are meaningless without context. You need to know who at least one of the individuals involved is otherwise how the hell can you tell that the 72 calls last week to that number in Birmingham are possibly terror related and not some daughter phoning up her mum to complain about hubby's latest transgression (which may or may not have involved pork swording the neighbour)..
It might be me but
Here we have a major technology problem with various options around different types of technologies and in order to make sure that the public know how we will deploy the chosen solution the Govt appoints a man whose careers are made up of:
marketing directorships at Transport for London, and, perhaps more significantly, BSkyB. Plus his commercial role as a director for Locog.
Well I am sure that all of those people out there who are looking for a solid solution that delivers the goods will feel happy knowing that the web site will go down when they first order it, will have up to three opportunities to order it and if they are lucky might be able to place an order for something that no one else really wanted. But with the upside that the marketing of the delivery of the solution will be top notch.
Or am I being too cynical?? Personally I would have liked them to appoint someone with success in delivering a large scale complex and potentially bleeding edge IT project but then I was always fussy.
Not really racist
Considering the problems that America has had with ethnically Chinese people ripping off its secrets (state and industrial) on behalf of the Chinese state and industrial groups I think it is reasonable to assume that there is an opportunity for there to be an increase in Chinese spying via technological measures.
However, I don't believe that this should be an allegation limited to just China. Israel, Iran, India, France and many other countries have both the technological capabilities to undertake the same types of espionage as those which are being highlighted as performed by the Five Eyes consortium. Even just reading El Reg will enable people to know this since it reported on both the French version of PRISM and the implementation of the Indian vesion of a similar system.
China is however at the forefront of technological espionage since a)it produces the majority of the world's technology, the state has a vast fund of money available to pay potential spies and it has the biggest diaspora of its people to enable it to gain spies in pretty much any country in the world.
Racist, nah simply commonsense
Off to read my BT contract
I am pretty certain when I signed my contract with BT it did not include a clause that said "and you must tell us whether you watch porn". I am interested how a) BT will react if I refuse to press the buttoms the govt tells them I must press and b) how OFCOM will respond when I complain about the lack of competition in the UK broadband market because I cannot find an ISP who isn't asking me about my viewing habits and c) just for a laugh, how will V Reding respond when I point out that collecting information about the viewing habits of ISPs is in my personal view an invasion of my privacy. Oh and finally, what is that things in the Human Rights Act about my right to privacy!!
A simple suggestion
Why not rip out all that expensive and valuable copper cable and replace it all with fibre. That will stop the thieves, well except for the stupid ones who go a nick the metal in the cables alongside railway lines, but then we can always hope that in their greed they touch the one carrying a few thousand volts.
Re: Agree with most comments here...
Sorry, Amazon does not pay the UK Govt any VAT whatsoever, that money is paid by consumers as a tax on all goods that they choose to procure from Amazon. Amazon are actually the collector of VAT not the payer. In fact Amazon get to offset the VAT they pay for goods and services against the VAT the collect so they don't even handover all the VAT that consumers pay them for the goods.
I think that if you went through Amazon's books that you would also find that Amazon are in receipt of various waivers of business taxes and capital allowances in relation to their various depots. In fact the article point out the subsidy paid to them in respect of at least one of their warehouses in Scotland and they also received monies when they set up their site in Swansea so they are highly likely to be a net beneficiary of business taxes rather than a payer.
Finally the turnover is not the correct value to look at but the actual profit. However, due to the high interest rates that Amazon SARL charges Amazon EU et al the profits are skewed. That said if you assume a net margin of between 3% & 5% (not unreasonable in their business) then their profit should have been in the range £90m to £200m on their turnover which should have resulted in taxes somewhere between £25m - £60m against the 2£2.5m they paid.
Re: EULA's are not binding if
With respect to your point 2, whilst a contract must have consideration a license is not the same thing. You may well enter in to a separate contract for the procurement of the goods which are in turn subject to a separate license which dictates how those goods may be used. Therefore a license is still valid without consideration; else why do we have the wide variety of Open Source license agreements for products which are often provided free of any charge?
Secondly consideration is not always monetary in nature, consideration is simply the provision of something of value in return for something of allegedly similar value. Therefore it could be argued that the consideration in this instance would be that the permission to allow the software to mine Bitcoins is provided in return for the provision of the functionality in the toolbar.
However, there in England and Wales there may be a number of legal points on which the user could argue against having accepted the license terms such as the fact that the mining of Bitcoins is not linked to the purpose of the toolbar. Where there is a gap in the relationship between the purpose of the software and the license then a court may rule those elements of the EULA which are not relevant to the use of the toolbar are void. English law also takes a dim view of EULAs that seek to introduce terms which the user cannot challenge or negotiate out so again the court may rule in favour of the individual. Finally, if the user incurs charges that were not made clear at the point that the contract was struck (e.g. additional power charges, wear and tear on the computer, use of bandwidth, etc) then this would be a potential breach of the Sale of Goods and or Services legislation and therefore unenforceable in law.
Please note I am not a lawyer but have an understanding of elements of commercial and contract law.
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