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* Posts by Loyal Commenter

1786 posts • joined 20 Jul 2010

Doctor Who and the Dalek: 10-year-old tests BBC programming game

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Re: hold on...

Consequently I think the wee buggers should have to learn assembly.

Screw that, give them a copy of Knuth's The Art of Computer Programming and make them write everything in the purely hypothetical MIX assembly language!

To be honest, there's a lot of value in teaching people how things work at a very basic level. As a developer who works with high-level languages every day I may not need to know how to do assembly-level stuff very often, but a firm knowledge of the fundamentals proves useful more often than you'd think.

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Scientists skeptical of Lockheed Martin's truck-sized FUSION reactor breakthrough boast

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Re: Game changer

For over 150 years all the life changing major innovations came from America

Ahahaha

hahahaha

hahah

ha...

...Nurse! My pills...

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Re: just like water

They make straws for that now

Nifty, but doesn't solve the problem of water contaminated with non-particulate contaminants, such as (the quoted) heavy metals and VOCs, as well as toxic semi-metals like arsenic, that are a major problem with groundwater in some parts of the world.

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This isn't a sci-fi movie: It's a human-made probe snapping a comet selfie

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Re: one day...

Presumably bits about 4AU away...

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Apple KILLS SUPER MARIO. And Zelda. And Sonic

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This may be a dumb question, but why are emulators banned?

I think the reasoning goes something like this: Apple wants to have total control over the software which can be run on their devices. This is so that all purchases have to be through their store, and they get a cut. If they were to allow emulators, then this gives a route for arbitrary code to be run on the device. This includes both the ROMs for the original software on the emulated device, and also anything that can be compiled into that ROM format. Developers could then sell their software in ROM format, say, "run it though XYZ emulator" and avoid the Apple Tax.

And for those who are commenting that Android is the same; it is perfectly possible to load nay arbitrary app onto an Android device, without going through the Android store, it simply requires changing the setting to allow it, which is off by default. This is why Android tablets are used in business, for running bespoke software, and Apple devices are not (except by sales droids), because no software house in their right mind is going to let Apple have their source code, and a cut of their profits.

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Re: Retro

There's a C-64 emulator on the app store, but it comes with some games preinstalled, and cannot run any games that are not purchased through the App Store - and it won't let you drop into BASIC.

Then technically, it's not a C-64 emulator.

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Re: What did people expect?

A few reasons your patch may have been rejected:

- Is the issue it addresses recognised as a bug, or is it a subjective assessment? Is the thing your 'bug fix' fixes actually working as specified, but you disagree with the specification?

- Did your 'bug fix' meet the required coding standards, such as comments, variable name conventions.

- Is the fix self-contained, without any side-effects? In other words, does it change an interface, or affect outputs that another part of the software relies on?

- Is your code testable? Is it written with an interface and an implementation so that the implementation can be mocked out using the interface and tested using automated testing tools?

- Did you submit your patch via an official route, or just email it randomly to someone at Google?

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'MYSTERIOUS PYRAMID STRUCTURE' found on COMET beyond Mars: Landing planned

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Looks like

Lumpy Space Princess

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What’s the KEYBOARD SHORTCUT for Delete?! Look in a contextual menu, fool!

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Re: touch

I need the to use the Alt-Gr key frequently to type the € symbol, and sometimes to type accented characters such as é.

Try Ctrl+Alt+4 and Ctrl+Alt+e

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Re: I recall the 8088 machine I learned on...

that's more like choosing an iPad over a MAC

And that's more like choosing Duplo over Lego. Neither is an appropriate engineering solution...

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Apple blacklists tech journo following explicit BENDY iPhone vid

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...there are bigger stories in the world...

What, really, other things exist? Some of them are more 'important' than this story? Well, hot damn, whodathunkit?

Please go and look up 'straw man fallacy' and while you're at it look up 'ad hominem attack', then have a thought about who is the 'twat' and 'cunt'.

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Why are people not worried about electrical cable which only has a 1mm plastic coating to protect them from shock?

Maybe because that plastic coating is designed to be flexible and not break, and to be impermeable to moisture, to well defined engineering standards, whereas bending a battery that contains a highly reactive metal and which can short circuit as a result, catching fire in the process is a bad idea.

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Okay, having just read the actual test results in CR, it seems that HTC's phone performs just as badly, confirming that aluminium is not a good choice for something that is going to go in a pocket and get sat on. Looks like Apple still copied them despite there already being reports of this being a problem with the One M8 (which is a horrible name for a phone IMHO).

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Re: Big phone = more easily breakable..

As for people complaining its weaker, physics dictates the thinner phone would be weaker compared to thicker skeleton/chassis/interior (relative to its width and height)..

And anyone with a modicum of sense would realise that this make being thinner a bad design choice. But if Apple's designers had any common sense, they'd also realise that making a phone with a front and rear face made of glass will result in it becoming slippery in sweaty / dirty hands. So it looks like they've not heard of coefficients of friction, or bothered to look up the ductility of metals. Apple have always been a case of design (and price) over content. Having been forced to use some of their products on occasion, I can assure you that I will never willingly own one.

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Aluminium, despite Apple's assertions is indeed bendy in thin cross section.

A quick google search on the physical properties of aluminium confirms that it is both highly ductile and malleable. In layman's terms, this means that it can be both stretched, and squished easily. Not a great choice for a mobile phone housing, which is why other phone manufacturers who were already making phones with an aluminium body (*cough* HTC), make theirs out of a sufficient thickness of metal. Another case of Apple nicking someone else's idea and screwing it up...

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Re: If you can't say anything nice

All I can say is that you have obviously never had a cheap PSU blow up on you. If you're building your own PC, it's one of the most important components to get right.

If I were to buy one that subsequently failed in a short period of time, or gave shitty voltages, or didn't output the current it was rated for, then damn right I'd leave a negative review of it to warn others...

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Ice, ice maybe: Evidence of 'Grand Canyon' glacier FOUND ON MARS

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Re: claimed they had found a deposit of a "new type" of jarosite

By definition, it must be the same as jarosite found on Earth, as a mineral is defined by both its chemical and physical structure. The archetypical example of this is calcium carbonate, which is a single chemical that exists as three different minerals (calcite, aragonite and vaterite), which differ in their crystal structure.

So either, it is the same as terrestrial jarosite, or if it is a 'new type' of jarosite, it isn't jarosite, it's some other sulphate mineral composed of potassium and iron. This raises the question of how it has been identified, as if it is chemically or physically different to jarosite, its infrared spectrum will also be different, and presumably unknown.

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Windows 10: One for the suits, right Microsoft? Or so one THOUGHT

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Proper clipboard support

Is long, long, long overdue on the command line. Admittedly, there is the conflict between Ctrl-C copying, or cancelling certain apps, but I'm sure it's not too heinous to allow it to pass the keypress to the running application first if need be.

I wonder if they'll fix the other hideous bug in Explorer (and it IS a bug in the eyes of anyone who is remotely security conscious), where file extensions are hidden by default, so some joker can write a malicious executable with the word document icon and fool people into running it, because they can't see it's called 'sales.exe' and not 'sales.doc'. Yes I know Windows pops up a warning when you try to run a random .exe file this way, but I also know that users habitually click through message boxes without reading them, and this 'feature' is incredibly annoying for a number of other reasons.

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Four caged in UK after cyber-heist swipes €7m in EU carbon credits

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Emitting pollutants isn't cost free, but the cost is not borne by the emitter*. By taxing emissions, the cost is borne by the emitter, not by society as a whole.

If you buy your electricity from a supplier who produces it from burning coal, then your prices will be higher.

On the other hand, if you were to buy them from a carbon-neutral producer, the taxes would not apply. This way, the cost to society (unless you deny that anthropogenic climate change exists, in which case you are a moron), is borne by those causing it.

If the price + tax of your electricity is more than price - subsidy of 'greener' electricity (wind, solar, wave, nuclear, etc.) then people will buy the cheaper electricity, and we won't all be so screwed, so soon.

The alternative is to have to pay billions from the public purse to mitigate the effects of climate change post-facto, which will be MUCH more expensive, for everybody. The odds are that this will happen anyway, because people are short-sighted, especially politicians who cannot see past the next election.

*This is known as an externality. For example, if you draw your drinking water from a river, and I dump raw sewerage into it upstream, I don't bear the costs of making that water safe to drink. It is, to my eyes, cost free, and any cost to me is an 'externality'. From your perspective, and that of everyone downstream, the cost is very much there, and probably many times greater than it would have been for me to dispose of my sewerage properly.

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Indian MOM just LOVES it on Mars, tweets fave holiday snap

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Re: If I were to congratulate India for their technical achievement

Well at least one of those was because your comment was directly commenting on getting down voted rather than for cheering on India with this

I was remarking on my comment from yesterday, here, which consists entirely of a short statement congratulating India, but which somehow managed to collect a singular downvote. Normally being down-voted wouldn't bother me, but I am at a loss to understand why someone would down-vote this.

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Happy

Re: If I were to congratulate India for their technical achievement

Turns out the answer is yes. I seem to have made myself an enemy amongst the internet opinionistas...

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Re: Do you get what you pay for?

Go on then, you take some better pictures from a couple of hundred miles up, whilst travelling at tens of thousands of miles an hour*. It might also be worth pointing out that the Viking images were taken by the Viking Lander. It's just a teensy bit easier to take pictures of something when you're sat stationary on it.

* The orbital of the probe around Mars is elliptical varying from around 300 miles to 50,000 miles, according to *cough* the Mail Online (I feel dirty). I'm willing to bet that at that distance, and at the appropriate velocity required to maintain the orbit, any camera you might be able to buy at a reasonable price wouldn't take great pictures.

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Re: Congratulations India.

I would imagine that those employed by the Indian space agency, who if this project did not exist, would not be, and the Indian manufacturers, researchers and scientists that this benefits are actually quite pleased by it.

I'm also pretty sure that if this project didn't exist, none of the money spent on it would go to starving children anyway. Not that India doesn't have its problems, but I challenge you to point to a nation that doesn't have starving children in it. The Vatican doesn't count.

Please don't denigrate the achievements of a nation by naysaying, and waving and pointing at its shortcomings, unless you, personally, are going to do something about sorting out those shortcomings, as well as all of those of your own country.

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If I were to congratulate India for their technical achievement

would some moron downvote me for it again?

Either way, well done India, I'm still impressed.

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MOM: CHEAP Mars ship got it right first time. Nice one, India

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Re: Top Skills

I'm not entirely sure why someone felt the need to downvote me for that. Perhaps my congratulations were somehow offensive to someone who thinks that this isn't an impressive technical achievement by those in charge of the Indian space program, or perhaps the down-voter thinks that India doesn't deserve to have a space program. On the other hand, perhaps they believe that doing this sort of thing is a waste of resources and are too blinkered to see the benefits to be had to the people of India, from gaining the technical expertise involved in pulling this off. Or maybe they're just racist thugs, and don't like Indians?

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Top Skills

Well done India.

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'In... 15 feet... you will be HIT BY A TRAIN' Google patents the SPLAT-NAV

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On the other hand,

Those who would buy this could just have the following played on a loop through their stupid giant hipster headphones:

"WATCH WHERE YOU'RE GOING, DOUCHEBAG!"

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iPhone 6: Most exquisite MOBILE? No. It is the Most Exquisite THING. EVER

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Re: Look

Really, he's a better example of the British upper middle class. Thankfully, he has no authority, other than over eight students for half an hour at a time. He does, however, manage to act as if he is a figure of authority. Whilst this might be amusing when watching him make weasly politicians squirm on national television, I would imagine that being in a room with him for any amount of time would lead to a desire to chew through the walls in order to escape.

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Re: Mr Fry

So, what you are suggesting is that one would have to be suffering the acute effects of an actual psychiatric condition to consider the iPhone worth purchasing? Carry on...

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Re: to be fair

Mr Fry's Graun piece is explicitly a profession of unconditional faith in the Jobsian heresy. It's just as embarassing as any other religious rant and self-invalidating as journalism. bollocks.

Why use 25 words, when one will do?...

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Re: I'm Tony Paulazzo and I approve this message.

+1 for the use of "gorram" :)

Shiny.

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Very amusing

And it did remind me of one of my cow-orkers, out of whom the piss had to be liberally taken last week.

However, parody often works better if it attempts at least a modicum of subtlety...

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Loyal Commenter
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Re: Look

At least Bamber Gascoigne took the time to read the questions beforehand and research around them, so that he could make a judgement as to whether a slightly off answer could be deemed to be correct.

Paxo can't even properly pronounce the words in any vaguely science-based question, but still manages to maintain an air of snotty self-importance.

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Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure

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Re: Yup, back to normal soon methink. Although...

My six year old niece logged into my iPad after watching me key in the PIN.

The difference being in the detail, of course. Did your Niece brute-force the password, over the internet, in order to gain remote access to the data from your iPad? No, didn't think so.

The actual problem with all the cloudy stuff (and not just Apple's implementation) is twofold:

Firstly, the authentication is weak - it is password based, and doesn't seem to authenticate the device itself (otherwise, this was actual hacking, not just password guessing), so anyone can have a crack at getting in. In security parlance, the attack surface is very large - i.e. the entire internet.

Secondly, your data is held by a third party, who you have to implicitly trust. you have no say in how they secure your data, and no control over how they use it, other than the terms and conditions they give you. Which nobody reads anyway, because they are likely to be 200 pages of legal jargon.

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Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around

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Electronics 101

"Charge congregates in the pointy bits."

Principally because free electrons are inclined to get as far away from each other as they possibly can, being negative little bastards.

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Slap my Imp up: Bullfrog's Dungeon Keeper

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Re: I'm STILL playing this!!

It *needs* a decent remake - not the recent piece of money-grabbing crap that EA came out with and should be dragged out into the street and shot for.

Show me an EA game that this sentiment doesn't apply to...

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Re: If you are after a modern day version.

Wow, that really does look like a direct rip-off!

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Sun's MASSIVE solar storm belch to light up Earth's skies

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Re: Climate Change

Despite your rather transparent attempt to mock and thereby discredit climate science, I don't see or hear any actual scientists claiming that solar phenomena have anything to do with Earth's atmospheric chemistry, so please settle down.

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Dear Americans,

The Earth's surface includes more than just North America. Please be kind enough to include the rest of it in maps that show planet-wide phenomena.

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iCloud fiasco: 100 FAMOUS WOMEN exposed NUDE online

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Re: Meanwhile in other news..

War in Europe as Russia continues invasion of sovereign nation.

I supposed you could just about consider the Balkan states to be a part of Europe, geographically, but this conflict is hardly in what most people would commonly consider to be Europe, at least in a political sense

War in N. Africa continues: Jihadists butcher another journalist.

The last time I checked a map, Iraq and Syria were in the middle East, not North Africa. Not that there aren't any wars going on there, but I think you may be a little confused.

With map-reading skills like these, are you, by any chance, a US citizen?

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Loyal Commenter
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How many times?

If you want something to remain private, DON'T PUT IT ON THE INTERNET! That includes anything with 'cloud' in the name, and especially anything controlled by large companies such as Apple.

Not that I don't feel sorry for the slebs involved, but this reflects poorly on their powers of judgement.

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BOFH: The current value of our IT ASSets? Minus eleventy-seven...

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Pint

Re: Sharon T. Pokeworthy...

A fine ale, but not quite so good since they switched to using pelleted hops five or six years ago...

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Re: This is actually true...

In a previous incarnation, I used to sign job sign-off forms as Mickey Mouse. Things for print-runs of between 50 and 150k...

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True fact: 1 in 4 Brits are now TERRORISTS

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Re: ISIS

Concentration camps were (IIRC) first used by the Spaniards in their colonial wars in the Caribbean.

Concentration camps, in terms of rounding a group of people up and putting them in one place, have been used throughout recorded history by pretty much everyone. The term Concentration Camp was coined by the British Empire during its escapades in Africa during the late nineteenth / early twentieth century. The Spanish camps in Cuba prior to this were used under 'Reconcentrado' policy, which probably contributed to the coining of this term, but these were not referred to specifically as 'concentration camps'.

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Microsoft refuses to nip 'Windows 9' unzip lip slip

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Re: Complete this series...

Everything Microsoft makes these days is substandard crap.

I've actually grown to rather like Win7, and VS 2012 is nice once you turn off monochrome mode and change the registry to stop all the menus shouting at you.

Don't get me started on Orifice Office and its numerous iterations of confusing and contradictory UIs though...

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Re: Apple's Yawn and Windows Apology

Sorry but Apple is not a football team.

No, it's a cult.

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Complete this series...

Windows 3.1 good

Windows 95 bad

Windows 98 good

Windows ME bad

Windows XP good

Windows Vista bad

Windows 7 good

Windows 8 bad

Windows 9 ...

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Vampires and Ninjas versus the Alien Jedi Robot Pirates: It's ON

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Re: Robots hive mind for the win.

One mind = one target, so without any redundancy it's a terrible idea. Also without variation or autonomy, there's no adaptability.

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Re: Hmmmmmmmmmmmm

Godzilla!

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Loyal Commenter
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Ninjas are in

But are limited to their role in Kabuki theatre...

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