* Posts by Buzzword

644 posts • joined 30 Jun 2010

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Honor 7 – heir apparent to the mid-range Android crown

Buzzword
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16 GB is pointless

Why on earth do manufacturers persist in only providing 16 GB of storage? At least 4 GB belongs to the operating system; then you're just left with room for a couple of graphics-heavy games (Fifa '15 clocks in a 1.2 GB), a movie, some podcasts; and a few hundred photos and videos from that 20mpix camera. Yes you can stick in a MicroSD card, but that means faffing around with moving files to the card when things start to fill up. Ain't nobody got time for that!

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Security for those who know they can't win the security war

Buzzword
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Re: I'm tired already just reading it

Even muscle memory doesn't work across both computer keyboards and phone or tablet touchscreens. The muscles in use are just too different.

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Should all Europeans be able to watch Estonian football? Consultation launched

Buzzword
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Go the other way

The principle of geo-blocking is that you can charge higher prices to wealthy Brits or Germans, and lower prices to poor Estonians or Greeks. But why stop at national borders? Broadcasters could charge higher prices to Londoners and lower prices to Liverpuddlians; or even narrow it down by postcode, like car insurers do.

Heck, they could go the whole hog and demand to see your last three years' tax returns, and adjust the price according to what you can afford to pay. They certainly would if they thought they could get away with it.

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Shadow minister for Fun calls for Openreach separation

Buzzword
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Re: Question

That's asynchronous too. Your farmer getting 2Mb/s downstream would be lucky to get 256kb/sec upstream. That makes it hard e.g. to upload a photo of your cow's diseased arse to the vet's office.

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Even 'super hackers' leave entries in logs, so prepare to drown in data

Buzzword
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Re: Teeth grating

It's quite insidious.

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Get whimsical and win a Western Digital Black 6TB hard drive

Buzzword
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But why is it called Gorilla Glass?

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Don't fight the cistern: Voda takes the plunge with plumbers’ parking app

Buzzword
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"Up to 30 per cent of vehicles driving around inner cities are just looking for parking."

83% of statistics are made up on the spot.

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BOFH: Why, I LOVE work courses. Please tell me more, o wise one!

Buzzword
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IR35

"the professional goal-setting exercise that company policy obliges him to do with me and any other contractor with a contract that's rolled over for more than five years"

Careful, you're at risk of being considered an employee under IR35 legislation!

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Patching a fragmented, Stagefrightened Android isn't easy

Buzzword
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Re: REM had the answer in 1992?

The difficulty in getting Android updates is on a par with landing a "Man on the Moon".

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You'll LITERALLY PAY for getting tricked into visiting these scam sites

Buzzword
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Opt-out

It would be nice if the mobile operators gave us a way to opt-out of all such products. I have zero interest in paying for anything via my mobile bill.

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Citrix warns that Windows 10's Edge browser borks Receiver

Buzzword
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Can't they do it the iOS way?

On iOS Safari, when you open a website which has a corresponding app, it shows a "Smart App Banner" at the top of the page. This prompts you to run the app, or download it from the app store if it isn't already installed. Since Windows 8, 8.1, and 10 also have app stores, this ought to be possible.

> Update: I've checked, and it is indeed supported. Citrix, you know what to do.

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W is for WTF: Google CEO quits, new biz Alphabet takes over

Buzzword
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Tricky for investors

How are investors supposed to treat the new company? Either I'm a play-it-safe investor who wants a stable blue-chip advertising company shares, or I'm a reckless risk-taking investor chasing moonshot projects. There really ought to be separate classes of share for the two distinct parts of the business.

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Keep up, boyos! 20k Win XP PCs still in use by NHS in Wales

Buzzword
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XP > 10

It's more appealing than Windows 10....

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Hacklands introducing geeks to something called 'outdoors'

Buzzword
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eCows? eCows?

I've seen ordinary cows on the rare occasions when I've ventured outdoors, but what are these new-fangled eCows? (I can only presume that Apple has already trademarked iCows.)

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'White hats don't want to work for us' moans understaffed FBI

Buzzword
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Re: Public sector it jobs

G) You're an American, and you want a job that includes good healthcare provision, paid sick leave, and a decent amount of paid vacation.

H) You want a defined-benefit pension (even if the sums on offer aren't great, you value the security).

I) You're a young woman, and you want an employer that won't screw you over when you go on maternity leave.

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NSPCC: Two nonces nailed by cops every day

Buzzword
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Re: Smut filter and nonce-catching

Indeed - where's the connection?

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Windows 10 on Mobile under the scope: Flaws, confusion, and going nowhere fast

Buzzword
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What should Microsoft's enterprise clients do now?

Last year many companies had only just finished migrating away from Windows XP. For large enterprises which are heavily tied in to Microsoft systems (Windows, Active Directory, Exchange/Outlook, Office, etc.) what's the next step? We'll be clinging on to Windows 7 for dear life, but if Microsoft doesn't get its act together then we'll need something new. Any suggestions?

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Are you a Tory-voting IT contractor? Congrats! Osborne is hiking your taxes

Buzzword
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Yes, they will emigrate

There are plenty of foreign contractors working in the UK. Tax them too much and they'll leave (or stop coming in the first place). For a Spaniard or Greek it's just as easy to move to Germany as it is to move to the UK.

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Time for a brutal TELLY-OFF: Android TV versus Firefox OS

Buzzword
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Cast your minds back

I find it much faster and easier to cast content from smartphone to TV, rather than navigate through the TV's laborious submenus and unintuitive button sequences to reach e.g. the YouTube app. All the TV needs to do is display anything cast to it. And if that's too hard, a £30 Chromecast or Amazon Fire dongle will fix the problem.

More importantly, a TV should last a decade or more. Any "smart" TV will be poorly supported within three years, let alone ten. (Just look at how few Android phones get OS upgrades.) So let's hear it for dumb TVs controlled via smartphone instead.

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IBM to offer BREAST MILK delivery-as-a-service for staff

Buzzword
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On-site childcare would be preferable

So that the tots can see where mummy works all day.

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Google hits TurboFan button on Chrome's JavaScript engine

Buzzword
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What for?

Faster JacaScript just means faster ads pumped into our faces. Browsing a 1990s-era website is instant; but browsing any modern site is an exercise in frustration, waiting for a shed-load of external dependencies to kick in. On mobile devices it's even worse: you start reading the content, then the paragraph jumps out of view as a dynamically-loaded ad fills the space you were reading.

So thanks, Google, for making the browsing experience slightly faster with Chrome; but no thanks for making it such a horrible experience with all your ads.

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Courtney Love in the crossfire! Paris turns ugly over Uber

Buzzword
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Why not in Britain?

Why don't "les rosbifs" have UberPop? I wouldn't mind earning an extra £20 a day dropping off passengers at the airport (which just happens to next to my office).

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Wake up, sheeple! If you ask Siri about 9/11 it will rat you out to the police!

Buzzword
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Date order

If they'd just call it 11/9 like the rest of the world, then they wouldn't have this problem.

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Vodafone splashes €2 BEEELLLION to kick German TV sideways

Buzzword
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Making maximum money

Haven't the governments shot themselves in the foot here? If they restricted the amount of bandwidth for sale (leasehold), they would limit the supply and thus push up prices. As it stands they're flooding the market with 4G frequencies. No wonder they aren't reaching the lofty heights of the 2000-era auctions.

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Reg scribe feels disturbance in the force at secret Empire Strikes Back screening

Buzzword
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£80 actually

£75 plus booking fee, so £80.50 for one person or £79.25 per head for a couple. That kind of money would buy you a lot of tickets to far more original events.

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MOUNTAIN of unsold retail PCs piling up in Blighty: Situation 'serious'

Buzzword
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Re: @AC

@jason 7,

Sure, the Apple costs a bit more to buy; such that you might well end up at the same financial position after three years, including the resale value. But during those three years you'd have all the enjoyment that comes with owning an Apple product; whereas your Dell will afford you no such joy.

If you genuinely prefer the Dell then that's fine; but if you were hoping for a cheaper Apple equivalent, it's a false economy.

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Buzzword
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Re: @AC

Yet curiously a three year-old second-hand MacBook will easily sell for at least 33% of list price.

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Climate change alarmism is a religious belief – it's official

Buzzword
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Vague platitudes, no concrete calls for action

I see lots of green flag-waving but no mention of specifics. He could demand global cap & trade legislation to limit CO2 emissions; he could demand anti-pesticide laws or anti-pollution laws in those countries which have a problem with environmental pollution (clue: not the west). He could even say that people who switch on their air-conditioners when the outdoor temperature is less than 30 degrees will burn in hell (oh the irony!). But no, it's just a wishy-washy motherhood & apple pie statement. Nothing to see here.

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NatWest IT cock-up sees 600,000 transactions go 'missing'

Buzzword
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Re: Self-inflicted

>"does make me wonder whether they made any effort to resolve their individual cases themselves before spamming the internet with their rants"

Companies seem to react faster to bad news posted on social media than to bad news communicated directly to them. Last month I tried to tell a major company that its website had a broken FAQ link. I used the "send a message" functionality on their website; they emailed back failing to understand the problem, so I phoned them and got the standard script: "What is your account number?" "I don't have a bloody account, I was trying to research whether to open one!"; and after three follow-up emails I gave up.

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The insidious danger of the lone wolf control freak sysadmin

Buzzword
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Internal wikis - do they ever live up to expectations?

"If you don’t have a Wiki-style document repository where people can add designs, hints, tips and known issues, you really are missing a trick."

Maybe it's just the places I've worked, but I've never seen a decent internal Wiki. In my experience documents get strewn across multiple locations: network drives, source control, Readme.txt files buried alongside source code, Sharepoint documents, Sharepoint Wikis, other Wikis, etc. The idea of having one Wiki to unify them all reminds me of https://xkcd.com/927/ - just replace "standards" with "document repositories".

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Buzzword
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Re: We recently had this..

If the department is under-resourced and employees are regularly having to work long hours to meet deadlines, then I'd fully expect them to leave. That's poor management, nothing to do with having an employee like Tim.

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The NHS pays up to NINE TIMES over trade price for commodity kit

Buzzword
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> "the products acquired were in all likelihood one-off or low volume purchases"

Isn't this just a case of "we need a twenty-foot network cable to make our £million CT scanner work, can you nip down to PC World and get one?"

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British banks consider emoji as password replacement

Buzzword
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Re: Great Idea!

I can't imagine banks encode in ASCII either - they're still using EBCDIC.

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Why is that idiot Osbo continuing with austerity when we know it doesn't work?

Buzzword
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Re: What spare capacity?!

Holding on to employees for a year or two, perhaps; but for seven years? Your theory is implausible.

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Buzzword
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What spare capacity?!

"a recession, when there's spare capacity"

Nothing like today then, with our 5% unemployment rate. Nor do we have factories lying idle, nor airports half-empty, nor any other possible indicator of spare capacity.

So whatever the lessons of this article, they aren't relevant to the present situation.

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Shine a light on the rogue IT that hides in the company shadows

Buzzword
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Bill directly to departments & projects

Maybe IT could be billed directly to departments that use them, rather than funded centrally. Following the money tends to concentrate minds wonderfully, and departments may be pleasantly surprised to see how much cheaper it is to use internal resources rather than engaging external consultancies.

You'd still need some central IT oversight to make sure they follow common standards, coding conventions, security policy, etc., so you'd end up billing only half their time to projects / departments and the rest to central office. It'd still be an improvement though.

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MIT bods' digital economy babblings are tosh. C'mon guys, Economics 101

Buzzword
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Re: Tax the robots!

Maybe your car should pay NI, since it's just a robot replacing the two men who previously carried you around on your sedan chair.

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United Airlines accounts open to mass lock-outs

Buzzword
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Re: Account lockouts

Indeed. It's trivially easy to get your hands on a bulk list of valid email addresses, and if you're DDoSing a large company (say Amazon, EE, Tesco's) where half the country has an account, you'll get a pretty good hit rate.

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Les unsporting gits! French spies BUGGED Concorde passengers

Buzzword
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Economy of France

This might explain how France manages to have a first-world standard of living while pursuing a second-world economic policy.

(cue flames in 3... 2... 1...)

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ISIS command post obliterated after 'moron' jihadi snaps a selfie, says US Air Force

Buzzword
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Geotagging hack

I'm going to find a picture of some bearded bloke in the desert and edit the EXIF data such that the geotag points to the White House, then post it on Twitter. Let's see if they actually do basic sense checks before typing the coordinates into the missiles.

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Kaspersky says air-gap industrial systems: why not baby monitors, too?

Buzzword
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Re: Baby monitors?!

Yes they exist - some people like to watch their baby while they're at work.

What's the worst-case scenario? Let's imagine somebody wants to kidnap your baby, so they'd like to hack into your baby monitor to find out when the parents aren't in the room. (Let's assume it's a hot country and baby's window is wide open.) If the kidnapper is outside your house waiting for the parents to leave the bedroom, it's just as easy to sniff a DECT wireless baby monitor as to hack a wifi-connected one. Maybe even easier.

Of course, all this is ridiculously hypothetical. Your security flaw is leaving the window wide open, not leaving your baby monitor's firmware unpatched. Most babies are stolen from public places: hospitals and nurseries in the main, but also e.g. snatched from the back seat of the car while mum goes into the petrol station to pay. Let's stop pretending that cybersecurity matters for baby monitors.

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Elon Musk's $4.9 BEELLLION taxpayer windfall revealed

Buzzword
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Consumer subsidy per car

Does the $7,500 tax credit really matter for Elon's fortunes? The first car, the Tesla Roadster, had a list price of $109,000. How many prospective buyers were persuaded by the government's 6.8% discount?

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Spoiling staff with toys could turn against your business

Buzzword
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What are we trying to prevent?

I'd like to see some real-world cases where an ex-employee used old company emails stored on his personal phone / laptop / Hotmail account to somehow gain an unfair advantage which he couldn't have gained if the article's guidelines had been followed.

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Bank: Without software mojo, Android OEMs are doomed to 'implode'

Buzzword
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There's still some scope for OEMs to innovate (look at the YotaPhone with its e-ink rear screen); so it's not all doom and gloom. The fact that they can't fiddle deeply with the OS is quite reassuring to some consumers.

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O2 craps itself on national Blighty holiday as cabinet minister moans: 'Oi, sort it out!'

Buzzword
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O2 tend to be cheaper than the other networks though. You pays your money and you takes your choice.

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NEVER MIND the B*LLOCKS Osbo peddles, deficits don't really matter

Buzzword
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Flow of money

"if you're paying that interest out to foreigners then that's money that leaves the domestic economy"

That's true for Greek euro payments to Germany; but when Britain repays its debts to a foreign creditor, those are pounds sterling; and they can only be spent in Britain. So it never really leaves the British economy.

The result is that printing money has the same effect as printing debt: it's inflationary.

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Brexit-fearing Vodafone: Of course we’ll make money from 4G

Buzzword
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Blocked by default

Porn is blocked on UK mobile networks by default, and many users shy away from requesting an unblock. So it may be true that Pornhub has a lot of users viewing on mobile devices, but they'll be on Wifi, not 3G/4G.

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NHS Scotland to refresh creaking, 25-year-old apps

Buzzword
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Can't be too hard

A twenty-five year old system must surely be incredibly basic - the state of the art desktop computer back then was the Intel 486DX. Replicating that functionality with modern tools will be quite straightforward.

Of course then some idiot will come along and add tons of superfluous features, and ten years down the line they'll be tendering for the replacement of a thirty-five year old system.

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Californians get first chance to be RUN OVER by a GOOGLE ROBOT

Buzzword
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Re: No need to worry

Most cars reach 30mph on urban commutes, even if their average speed over the whole journey is just 10mph. City driving is largely start-stop: bursts of 30mph when the light turns green, followed by 0mph when the next light is red.

Cyclists often make the same mistake: assuming that because they can hit 12mph, they'll be faster than car drivers averaging 10mph. But cyclists are also doing 0mph at red lights, so their average journey speed is just 4mph.

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