* Posts by Pen-y-gors

1566 posts • joined 1 Oct 2010

HMS Illustrious sets sail for scrapyard after last-ditch bid fails

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Utterly shameful

however even more circumspect papers have pointed out a number of them had links to the EU machinary that made their impartiality suspect to say the least.

Actually it doesn't. I really, really don't think the impartiality of Britain's most senior judges can be called into question. I suspect some of them would sentence their own children to life if that was what was legally justified. And of course, unlike in some countries, they aren't elected politicians or personal appointments by the PM. Think about that if you want nightmares.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: I am enough of a naval history buff...

"We're a small country who has one of the longest coastlines in europe. You need a large navy to defend it."

True, but a lot of the right sort of ship. Expensive aircraft carriers without any aircraft, even expensive ones, really aren't much help with fishery protection and people-smuggling fast ribs. Any point in our entire 200-mile limit can be reached by one of the few remaining fast RAF jets within about 10 minutes from take-off.

And we'll need to keep an eye open for traditional smugglesr bringing in brandy, bacco and laces once the post-Brexit tariffs bite. Bring back Coastguards pattroling the Cornish cliffs.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Utterly shameful

Generally a fair point, 'hate' is rather overused, but in the case of the Daily Heil, I think 'hate' is a mild word. The foul acidic, lying bile that spews out of the Mail can't be described any other way. Calling experienced judges giving a clear and considered verdict 'Enemies of the People', branding a judge a 'gay, former olympic fencer' (as if that's a bad thing?), I hate to think what dirt they'll throw at the Supreme Court after next month's 11-0 decision.

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Shame

Surely they could have dug out a few old Gloster Gladiators from a museum somewhere and put them on board, then Britain would again have a working aircraft carrier AND working planes to fly from it.

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Information on smart meters? Yep. They're great. That works, right? – UK.gov

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Gosh, but it is sooooo useful

To be fair, I have a plug in monitor, and it is useful. True, I don't boil the kettle less, or turn the oil-fired heating off, but it's a useful visual reminder if something invisible (electric fire in the office?) has been left on, as the expected 'background' reading of about 500w shows as 2.5kW - so, useful, but fairly limited.

Best buy was one of those plug-in meters that monitors individual appliances to show just how much they are using. Stand-by can be quite expensive over time!

But as far as smart meters go, I'm sure my neighbours in the hills with a large attic don't want to have to explain to the plods why they're using 20kW of lighting 24/7

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Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube team to ID terror content

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Hashes?

Dunno about a single pixel, but presumably there are various transformations which cumulatively tend to confuse any hashing techniques, whilst preserving the gist of the underlying image.

And thinking of image recognition, I see that AWS are now pushing their image recognition services...

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Very good initiative

Pornography is NOT a crime in most of the west

...except of course in the UK, which has decided that taking (or possessing) a photograph of a variety of legal acts is iitself illegal.

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Ofcom fleshes out plans to open up BT's ducts and poles

Pen-y-gors
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Universal Service Obligation?

And will these capitalist competitors be required to provide a service everywhere? Or just cherry-pick the easy and profitable areas, forcing the unit costs for BT and Openreach in less crowded or complicated areas up? As has happened with the Postal system.

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Guessing valid credit card numbers in six seconds? Priceless

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Malwarebytes

You are not wrong! Thanks

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Pen-y-gors
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Malwarebytes

Thankfully I'm running malwarebytes which blocked an outbound connection to rescator.cm, even though I hadn't clicked on it. Firefox being helpful and pre-loading links?

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Why your gigabit broadband lags like hell – blame Intel's chipset

Pen-y-gors
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Nice illustration

Presumably the kid has just found how to get past the parental controls to the REAL interwebs (no, not cat photos)

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Brexit means Brexit: What the heck does that mean...

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Re: Goldsmith lost in Richmond because of it. Apparently.

@boltar

Quite agree - let's have a re-run of the Richmond election. How about in May 2018? And another in May 2023 and in May 2028.

A chance to change your mind is part of democracy...

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Plastic fiver: 28 years' work, saves acres of cotton... may have killed less than ONE cow*

Pen-y-gors
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More importantly....

Could they make them behave more like the old notes? They are a right sod to count in bundles. Slide all over the place and stay bent rather than flattening out. Please add whatever animal products are necessary to improve things (except kittens, obviously)

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Re: Silly people

@AC

"I mean, I just ate a kitten burger, no really

You are a Tory Cabinet Minister and I claim my £5.

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Re: Pandora's box?

Not sure that is a good point to make. Wool naturally falls from sheep and shearing just accelerates that process and is beneficial as the result is more comfortable (obvious the process the sheep go through is a little distressing, but done well most of them seem to bleat quite merrily afterwards.

But in our dream vegan world, there wouldn't be any sheep for the wool to fall naturally from. Why waste valuable lentil-growing land to graze sheep, just to get a crop of wool? Ditto, no cows, chickens or pigs. I was going to say, 'apart from a few in a zoo', but of course there are no zoos in Vegtopia. You might get the odd wild Jersey or boar wandering the Northern forests, but that's it.

Veggie is fine as a lifestyle, and probably pretty healthy. But munching on the occasional bit of naturally-reared animal does help to keep a living countryside. I rather like hearing the local sheep, cows and horses chatting when I'm dozing off to sleep.

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It’s Brexploitation! Microsoft punishes UK for Brexit with cloud price-gouging

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The 'over many years' is the main point here. At the moment it looks as if they wand to do it in one year.

They're just being practical. Normally they plan for returns over many years, but if they foresee that within a few years the UK customer base will have reverted to bartering leaves for acorns for food, and have moved on to a post-technological society (counting on their fingers), then they're going to get payback while they can. The only clouds in post-Brexit UK will be the ones that pour rain on our crops.

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Anyway, price increases from foreign service providers is a boon to local service providers, no? Think of it as an opportunity for domestic IT services!

Yep. But of course they'll have to buy all their kit from abroad (unless the Govt plan to resurrect ICL?) at foreign prices in dollars (plus tariffs if they don't move fast).

And lets be honest, unless they're forced to, who will want to store their bits in the great May surveillance state?

<footnote>See how I managed to get in a dig at Brexit AND the Snoopers Charter in the same comment. I'm cooking on gas today!</footnote>

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Pen-y-gors
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Forward planning?

It's very embarassing to raise prices every three months. Maybe they're just planning ahead for the next falls in the pound once the governments 'strategy' for Brexit is finally revealed (does running around like a headless chicken and pretending black is white count as a strategy?).

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Microsoft's 'Samaritan' refuses help to hackers doing Win 10 recon

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That's nice

The world needs more people like this.

Although why MS couldn't have done it themselves, $deity_of_your_choice alone knows

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Europol cop took terror dossier home, flashed it to the web accidentally

Pen-y-gors
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Security?

Mark Hickman, WinMagic's chief operating office, commented: “If organisations like Europol which are so tight on security can make mistakes, it brings into stark reality how much inherent risk there is for businesses if the right approach is not taken to educating employees, as well as having the right technology, to protect data at rest.”

Are you listening Mrs May? How many years' worth of UK browsing history fits on a USB stick?

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Eugene Kaspersky is now personally defending your feet

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What a pity

Wrong size. So I'll just make a very not-at-all-amusing comment as I don't want to win.

President Trump

Prime Minister Farage

Presidente Le Pen

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European Council agrees to remove geoblocking

Pen-y-gors
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VPNs?

It's a pity that this is a proposed EU regulation, as it would be really handy in the future. We'll all be using overseas exit points for our VPNs to prevent the Welsh Ambulance Trust being able to see our browsing history and it's a pain to get adverts for Icelandic products, but more of a pain when you get totally blocked from a site 'cos they think you're a Viking.

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and what about VAT?

The biggest hassle with selling across borders is the change in VAT rukes - you have to pay VAT based on the buyer's local rate rather than the seller's. This put a stop to Amazon Luxembourg selling loads of cheap DVDs, but is a nightmare for a small business. <ukip advert>Much simpler to 'just say no' to foreigners </ukip advert>

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Fatal flaws in ten pacemakers make for Denial of Life attacks

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Nice paper title

Although maybe "Wifi considered harmful." might be more appropriate.

Another source of profit - take one over, trigger a few blips just to warn the wearer, and then walk with them to the nearest cash machine. Would that count as ransomware? blackmailware?

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Whiffy kitchen after last night's chips? Clear the air with SPACE PLASMA

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Car-size model?

I quite agree that the smell in the chippie (before) is wonderful, but it's the smell in the car the next day from the left-over ones that is a bit ucky at 8am. Can we have a dashboard-fitted version please?

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Pen-y-gors
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That reminds me...

In a past life I worked for a large general insurance company. There was a problem with insuring chip shops. The main cause of fires was that the filters in the extractors didn't get regularly cleaned, so they clogged up with fat, caught fire, and burned the place down. Okay, simple solution, as a condition of insurance they had to regularly clean the filters and keep proof that it had been done. Next problem, place burns down anyway, including all your paperwork, so how do you prove etc...

One smart-arse in another company had a bright idea. Why don't we offer an insurance package that includex a regular filter clean and replace by an outside company? Then, if it burns down, it doesn't matter whether the filter had been changed, 'cos if it hadn't then it's the insurer's fault, not the distraught chip-fryer.

Cleaned up 80% of the market.

Lateral thinking can be good.

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Six car-makers team to build European 'leccy car charge bar network

Pen-y-gors
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Interesting supply questions

If each car can pull 350 kW, and there are half a dozen charging points in one place, that's a helluva big mains cable!

There's a fundamental problem with re-charging leccy cars from the mains - what people really, really want is to get a full charge from a 13amp socket in 3 minutes. But that ain't going to happen. Slow charge overnight or while parked during the day, when you're only doing 50 miles a day is no problem, but for long distance no-one's found a solution so far (other than possibly hot-swappable batteries) - this isn't one either.

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UK's new Snoopers' Charter just passed an encryption backdoor law by the backdoor

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To paraphrase Scotty

Ye cannae cheat the laws of mathematics - pity we don't have any mathematicians in the government.

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Aw, how sweet: Google Brain claims to clock diabetic eye diseases just like a proper doc

Pen-y-gors
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Tastless (tasty?) headline

Kudos for the 'Aw, sweet' headline - up to El Reg's usual mildly tasteless standards!

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Re: Welll...

Fair point, and there have been instances where screening programs have got it wrong.

But rather than a yes/no or maybe/maybe not option, if the result is expressed as a probability then results which are close-ish to the cutoff point, and those which are 'yes' can be referred to a human for interpretation and confirmation. That would at least cut out the human work on the "absolutely not a hint of it" tests. And if you're paranoid, do spot checks on the machine ones as well..

And to be honest, I suspect that the scans are actually assessed by some specialist technician in an office, rather than a 'proper doc'.

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Internet Archive preps Canadian safe haven to swerve Donald Trump

Pen-y-gors
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Better option

Other than the risk from volcanoes, I'd have thought they should keep going when they reach Canada and carry on to Iceland.

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Three certainties in life: Death, taxes and the speed of light – wait no, maybe not that last one

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Science? What happened to "hypothesis" vs "theory"?

When I was a nipper there were four stages: observation, hypothesis, experiment, conclusion. It seems that here they have an observation (odd behaviour in CBR), a hypothesis (c perhaps variable after all), are designing an experim,ent and that will lead to a conclusion (of some sort - possibly that the experiment was flakey)

I think 'theory' is just a nice easy-to-understand synonym for 'hypothesis' to make life easier for Daily Mail and Express readers, whose difficulties with clear analytical reasoning are long-proven.

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Airbus flies new plane for the first time

Pen-y-gors
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Cost increases?

Will Airbus have to pay tarriffs when importing the wings in future?

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Small ISPs 'probably' won't receive data retention order following IP Bill

Pen-y-gors
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Sign-off

"adding that the process would have to be singed off by a judge."

Sung to the tune of "Watching You" by Rodney Atkins I presume?

(Yes I know it's a typo and should have been reported under corrections, but it's a wondeful image)

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Space crap: Flap, zap or strap? $30k from NASA for your pooper scooper

Pen-y-gors
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Complicated problem...

I'm wondering if there's any mileage in a system that makes use of the close proximity of a hard vacuum to assist in freeze/vaccum drying the unwanted material?

Humans are really not well designed for space travel, are we? Can we use CRISPR to genetically modify astronauts to have a larger bowel and 5-gallon bladder?

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USS Zumwalt gets Panama tug job after yet another breakdown

Pen-y-gors
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Which enemy?

Depends on the enemy. The russians and chinese have satellite images and other clever stuff. The average Somali pirate or Yemeni suicide bomber in a fast rib doesn't - they work on line of sight or very basic radar, so at least it would help them. Or perhaps for defeating pirates you need an anti-stealth system, so that a small cargo ship appears on radar as an entire US carrier battle fleet.

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No super-kinky web smut please, we're British

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Excellent News!

I was concerned that the UK was facing some really, really bad times ahead that was going to require the entire concentration and effort of the government and civil service for years to come to overcome (if indeed they can, which I doubt). But obviously I should not have been concerned - clearly the problems aren't as bad as expected and so the government has plenty of time to spare on silly, pointless legislation aimed at satisfying the crazy beliefs of T May and the Daily Fail. Rejoice!

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Sorry, iPhone fans – only Fandroids get Barclays' tap-to-withdraw

Pen-y-gors
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I'll make a note in my diary...

to download this excellent app. What's this it says under the same date? Ah yes, "Hell Freezes Over"

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Visa cries foul over Euro regulator's stronger authentication demands

Pen-y-gors
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Don't see whatb the fuss is

If I shop on amazon (sorry...!) I have to enter my password, if I shop elsewhere and pay by paypal, I have to log in to paypal with a password, so it looks as if both those are already compliant. Of course if I'm trying to make a one-off purchase with a stolen CC then it'll be a lot more inconvenient.

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Deliver-oops! Takeaway pusher's customers burger-ed by hijackers

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Re: "checking the address on orders is close to or the same as pre-registered addresses."

Here's a really off-the-wall idea...how about the plods get in their cars and try knocking on the doors to which the grub was delivered? May not be the perps, but perhaps friends of the perps? Or maybe the hackers get a kick from having free food delivered to random addresses?

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HTC and OnePlus spruce up flagships for Santa's sack

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OnePlus pricing

The 3T does look nice, but 400 squids? I am a happy owner of a OnePlus 1 that cost about £250 - that was cheap and very good value. The 3T may be pretty good, but it's not really budget any more, except when compared to Apple.

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LAKE OF frozen WATER THE SIZE OF NEW MEXICO FOUND ON MARS – NASA

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Re: Units

Very helpful - but how many Windermeres in a Lake Superior?

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Irish eyes are crying: Tens of thousands of broadband modems wide open to hijacking

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Re: Frontier disables the firewall on all there DSL routers

Firewalls are for wimps! Someone breaks into your PC, you do the same as if they break into your home, you blow their frikkin' head off with your AK47

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UK.gov flings £400m at gold standard, ‘full-fibre' b*&%*%£$%. Yep. Broadband

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Get the basics right first.

yeah, dodgy cabling is a problem. A few months back we got upgraded to ADSL2+, and I appeared to get 17.5Mb - unfortunately with so many errors it was unuseable! OR engineer had a dig around and said there was some dodgy cable (Al?) further up the line, and booked a replacement. cranked speed down to 9Mb and it's fine. It's now crept up to 13Mb again and is dropping out all the time - 1000 corrected blocks per minute!

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Get the basics right first.

concentrate on cherry picking the quick wins and the highest paying contracts.

Fair point, but it's not entirely BTs fault. In the midst of lengthy correspondence with some senior Openreach bod about why we were promised fibre in 2013 and are still waiting, although the exchange and neighbouring cabinet went live a year ago, I got some interesting information. I'd complained that it was the constantly changing deadlines was the real pain. If someone had said in 2013 that you'll get it on 1st Dec 2016, and that happened then that's acceptable. They can't do everyone at once. But promising it in three months and then changing the date every three months is not on. His point was that they are set targets for delivery by the bean-counters who manage the funding, and they want to see new connections, not improved connections for existing customers. It therefore makes sense (to the beancounters) if they are slipping a bit, to concentrate on an easy area, and defer the tricky ones that they had planned to do.

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Pen-y-gors
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Not competent?

When it comes to reaching remote dwellngs with fibre I think I'd have more confidence in Openreach than Talk Talk or Virgin

In our patch of rural Wales you can't move for Openreach vans and bods stringing fibre. Yes, it's taken time, but they're getting there.

One thing I'm curious about though is the cost. Govt Minister says he wants full-fat capable of up to 1Gbps - but how much will the subscriber pay. I'll be on FTTP (330Mbps?) in a couple of months and it's all a bit vague how much that will cost. One version suggests about £150 a month (forget it) another that it's the same price as basic FTTC fibre, because it just works at max speed regardless. 1Gbps sounds great, but not if it costs £500/month! All very confusing.

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More than half of punters reckon they can't get superfast broadband

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Post-truth survey?

Interesting that all the questions were about what people 'believed' rather than what the actual facts were, e.g. according to BT (okay, pinch of salt etc) 86% of premises could have fibre, and that was six months ago, but only half 'believe' they can get it.

Why didn't the press release/article include the actual facts, rather than headline erroneous beliefs. Targeted at the Dily Fail was it?

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Facebook to hire 500 more in Blighty

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Re: It would be nice to see some tech jobs outside London

Oh come on, I know they are going to work for - gasp! Facebook - but would you wish Basingstoke even on such damned souls as them?

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Pen-y-gors
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Where are they employed?

No doubt 499 of the 500 will technically be employed by Facebook (Liberia) plc who charge an NI rate 50p per employee per year, so they will pay NI to the UK for 1 person less some clever rebates.

Cynical? Moi?

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Facebook Fake News won it for Trump? That's a Zombie theory

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@David Webb

"with the liberal/left only offering more of the same as we already have."

Which, to be fair, isn't actually too bad for most people. As far as Europe is concerned, most of us live in reasonable conditions, with enough to eat, schools for our kids, safety nets in case of economic trouble, good health provision and, on the whole, no risk of someone dropping a howitzer shell on your home.

I'm not sure I believe the promises of the 'other side' about the golden future ahead of us all in a semi-fascist state run by head-cases.

And thinking of what presidents are remembered for, let's just hope there are people still around to remember Trump. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that on the day he asks for the nuclear codes the guy with the football will look inside and say "Oooh, my bad. Wrong football. Looks like I left the real one on my dressing table."

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