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* Posts by GrumpyOldBloke

95 posts • joined 5 Mar 2011

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Lower prices are BAD FOR CONSUMERS, says Turnbull

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Turnbull has been dining with the Devil,

Thanks Khaptain

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Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them

GrumpyOldBloke

When the parents got home and raised the possibility of filtering I bet their kids gave them a good talking to hence the lack of follow through. This optional phase is temporary anyway in order to work out the bugs and soften up the electorate. Pretty soon we will begin to hear of 'demands' to make filtering mandatory, perhaps underscored by an expert or some otherwise avoidable crime but all the 'authorities' were on leave that day. Then some brave MP will stand up for the bankers and the war mongers (== ?) and make Britain great again. 2 minutes later the Australian public service will try and get it implemented here.

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Australia gets spooks' charter, new leak penalties

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Disconcerting

You are being a little unfair. Think of poor Mr Irvine's embarrassment! With all the powers granted to police and intelligence officers since 9/11 they forgot to consider the case of potentially angry people or people with alternate viewpoints entering the country. [Citing the fear that jihadists returning to Australia from Syria pose a threat to the country, Irvine said “it is a significant issue” and citing that threat as part of his case for data retention]. I would remind Mr Irvine of Benjamin Franklin's quote: those who give up essential libraries to effectuate a little insecurity observe neither.

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Voteware source code review 'could lead to hacking'

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Once a trouble maker always...

Basic principles of security are that you do not rely on obfuscation. Basic principles of democracy were once similar if my memory serves me correctly. If I am helping to foot the bill for our governments endless stupidity (esp at the federal level) then I want to be sure that the government we have is actually the government we voted for. The concept of odious debt suggests that the money lenders should share similar concerns. Nothing to hide, nothing to fear, right!

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Data retention saves Australia from TERROR says Labor MP

GrumpyOldBloke

Authoritarians seek more authority for themselves

Yup pretty much sums it up. I guess if a threat is imminent and seemingly unavoidable then all the security to date is exposed as the theater it really is. Perhaps the spooks could start doing their jobs with the extensive powers they have already stolen from us or at least publicly admit that terrorism is low level warfare waged by sovereign states - like our friends across the pacific - for economic gain. Not quite as scary as bearded devils who hate us for our freedoms but admitting you have a problem is the first step in solving it.

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Bloodied Samsung's profits down 25% as it clings to mobe crown

GrumpyOldBloke

A segment crying out for a proper operating system, cheaper peripherals (tablets:keyboards) and the ability to remove vendor crapware (esp Samsung).

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Surrender your crypto keys or you're off to chokey, says Australia

GrumpyOldBloke

Increasingly opaque public service demands ever greater transparency from the serfs. The Snowden revelations mentioned instructions from the US to its sycophants to view their citizens as the enemy. Do our public servants loose face before other public servants if they can't sell out their own populations or demonstrate their influence over the elected fools and cowards?

Perhaps the AG's department could occupy themselves, while waiting for the Australian public to see things their way, by following up on those WMD's that we went to war for. A million dead Iraqis. Who knew it was all lies and when? Another good one might be why the legislation governing the full body scanners at the Oz international airports mentions nothing about the need for the devices to be effective or safe. What or who was the real driver behind the rollout of these devices, why don't they need to be safe and whose decision was that. Is it a criminal matter?

Maybe ask ASIO why the spying on East Timor seemed to be more about corporate advantage than national security. Could it be the same story when we used a warship to intimidate the Solomon Islands and accused their leader of child porn/abuse offences? Does Bougainville have our sticky fingerprints on it as well?

There is a whole bunch of useful things the AG's office could be doing in their own backyard before straying even further into ours. That is of course if the law means anything to them other than as a tool of empire. Though whose empire might be another interesting question if they have a moment.

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My work-from-home setup's better than the office. It's GLORIOUS

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: 1920x1200

Dell and Samsung do 27" 2560*1440 at a reasonable price point while you wait for 4K

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Big Content wants Aussies blocked from Netflix

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: If only there was a legitimate alternative...

there's no benefit to anyone ... especially since it's been so widely adopted.

There is huge benefit to politicians allowing problems to fester until such time as the aggrieved party is prepared to pony up the dollars to get it fixed. Public comments by politicians that reflect a strong position but no actual action are a guide to said party that the donations are heading in the right direction but just a little bit more is required to get it over the line.

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Microsoft's JavaScript challenger nears 1.0, wins Visual Studio love

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: @GrumpyOldBloke

An article published in the register not so long mentioned new Javascript engines that run code about as fast as C# engines so we can conclude that the runtime inefficiencies are not so great. Direct indexing of memory; with just about everything living on the heap and being accessed through indirection there is probably not much difference between the C#/Java versus Javascript approaches anymore. So we are left with arguments about type as a code management issue and not a compute issue. My question is - is type the best way to solve code management issues. Counter intuitively strongly typed languages may actually be better in smaller projects. In larger projects the proliferation of types to keep the compiler happy creates a significant code design and code management overhead. We will see how the future pans out, with age comes dementia but also the recognition that many things that were once held dear pass their best by date. Abandoning strongly typed languages opens up a much more natural expression of interconnectedness in code and does away with a lot of the abstraction demanded by types. Does this require new ways to manage code - absolutely. Is a reversion to types the answer - I don't think so.

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GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Can't see the point myself.

Because people have forgotten that types largely existed in the old days to solve a compute problem.They cling to typed languages today in an attempt to solve a management problem. Unfortunately types are not great at this role despite an oft quoted belief that typed languages afford scale and banish bugs, ignoring the myriad number of types and bugs that appear in any large project and the often haphazard way they are brought into existence. Management problems need to be solved with management tools. Types in modern managed code are now little more than a feel good overhead. Prayer beads would probably work as well.

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Steelie Neelie 'shocked' that EU tourists turn mobes off when abroad

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: How can she be shocked?

She is shocked because without your phone it is more difficult for the 'authorities' to track you.

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SA Plods plonk boots on privacy principles with fingerprint scanners

GrumpyOldBloke

Not really an election issue. Standard procedure is to accidentally release a violent crim and oh-no the resultant carnage could have been avoided by solution looking for a problem product X. The petting zoo will knee jerk to avoid ministerial embarrassment and presto - new police powers! Next thing that will happen is VIC will introduce the policy to bring it into line with SA. From there it will spread to the other disease centres in the country and another civil liberty bites the dust for the greater good.

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Dart 1.1 bullseyes JavaScript performance in latest benchmarks

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: JS is the new ASM?

Things are never that strongly typed anymore. Interfaces, abstract functions, virtual functions, void pointers and unions (good old days) mean that we mostly don't really care what type something is. If the purpose of type is just to keep the IDE happy so you can have intellisense or to save a few clock cycles by allowing early binding then good riddance. Once we abandon strong types then we start to free ourselves of rigid class hierarchies and refactoring and regression problems when trying to describe completely new stories.

For example LegoBlock does not implement iFood but instances can be swallowed. Where should the new ChokingException be thrown from? It is only at run time that we find that this item does not support the EatMe method. While you could claim that this is an argument for strong types known at compile time that is not the way the new story played out. If you subsequently attempted to model this scenario you would have to refactor existing objects to implement iChewable or abandon type and pass Object references – either way it is ugly and it gets worse as new stories are created over time. Do we later need an iKissable or do we modify iChewable with a bite force or boolean sevearble attribute?

While there are currently program and programmer management issues associated with loosely typed languages like Javascript there are also huge advantages in abandoning a rigid type system and treating objects as a blob with discoverable properties and methods – just like every living thing does in everyday life. It will change the way software is written just like OO did before it.

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Microsoft to RIP THE SHEETS off Windows 9 aka 'Threshold' in April

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Save billions on marketing

By giving people what they WANT.

Not so simple. MS office is one of the planets biggest time wasters. Familiar OS paradigms are already feeling clunky as the accessibility of stuff is falling well behind its quantity. Sharepoint is not a great solution to corporate information overload. UI designers are struggling to give form to the next great leap forward. If MS give people what they want now by looking back it is doomed. The danger (hope) is that it will become irrelevant before any intelligent and creative forms survive its political sewer and its outsourced battery farms. Metro is obviously the wrong path, we evolved to recognise signposts by their contextual and spatial relationships - a bunch of disembodied tiles and a god awful ribbon isn't it. So what are they to do, they are no Google?

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TPP treaty nearly ready to roll over us, says Oz minister

GrumpyOldBloke

Our tin soldier in chief has already bravely stated that we can see it when it is signed.

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US Department of Justice details Kim Dotcom evidence

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: US$ 150,000,000.00

No, wont fly because this is not about monetizing todays content it is about future control of all content. By seeing pirates everywhere you can get stupid, stupid, stupid public servants and our dim witted representatives to pass legislation offering draconian penalties for trivial infractions of work that was done up to ~120 years ago. Armed with this the RIAA, MPAA and other bastions of godly virtue will shake down any new content producer or distributor. There is bound to be something in new work that is derivative from something created over the last 120 years - just let us scan your stuff against our archive, shouldn't take a minute. Even if there isn't there is no penalty for claiming there is and getting it taken down. This is why you can never settle with these parasites, never propose a sensible alternative, never reach consensus. It is not about protecting the world from Adam Sandler and Lady Gaga. It is about protecting established monopolies from Joe down the road who comes up with the next South Park and wants to sell it himself over the internet.

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Bizarre Tolkien-inspired GCHQ Xmas card CAN'T BE READ by us PLEBS

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Have you decoded it yet?

Is it my imagination or is there a dig at the NSA and the Snowden leaks when read vertically?

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GrumpyOldBloke

GCHQ: Mordor where the Shadows lie ?

A little further to the North.

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Feminist Software Foundation gets grumpy with GitHub … or does it?

GrumpyOldBloke

false means false!

true is an uncertain state, conditional on the forward performance of worker threads.

Exception reports are persistent and are distributed in resource pits across all data and executable stores. Throw, or share, statements are mandatory in all IO. There are no catch or finally statements. Liberal use of share statements is required to avoid process locks. Branching is performed using goto statements and is terminated with or else clauses. Code is verbose and bloat is considered beautiful. References to fuzzy logic are only appropriate where this=2x.

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Google unveils ten-year plan to build its ROBOT ARMY of the future

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Rubin's Robots

Plus the singing / dancing routine every couple of minutes as they deliver an advert - that could be fun for scaring pets and small children. Of course we all know where this is heading and I for one will be lining up to buy shares in the Sailor Moon robot company though I would not necessarily want to work in tech support for same.

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UK.gov's web filtering mission creep: Now it plans to block 'extremist' websites

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: icon appropriate

Divide and conquer – a mainstay of the British establishment since your kingdom was lost to foreign invaders. Sorry, that government merely exercises the will of the people is popular fiction – how is that EU referendum going or windmill farms or mass immigration? There are agenda's at play and the man in the street has little control over the apparatus of government and almost zero influence on the decision making processes. There is an enemy, it is within but it is not us.

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Why a plain packaging U-turn from UK.gov could cost £3bn a year

GrumpyOldBloke

> it has become an undesirable social activity by being forced outside

But by standing around outside you have gone back to the bike sheds / cool approach. It is almost impossible to walk down a street in any commercial district here without incurring second hand cigarette smoke. This of course also applies to school kids trying to walk to and from school. The stupidity of the standing around outside laws rather than internal air quality rules ensures that the next generation of smokers is still reachable by the cigarette companies - and we see this in smoking statistics for young people. The cigarette companies now need to focus on the attractiveness of the cancer stick rather than the packet it came in knowing that their undead customers are their greatest asset in reaching their future customers.

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Just who is Apple's most frustrated fanboi? Surprise – it's GOOGLE

GrumpyOldBloke

>several Google-developed open-source tools, such as crankd, Cauliflower Vest, and CanHazImage.

Do American universities not teach their computer programmers to use sensible names for objects? "Cauliflower Vest is an end-to-end Mac OS X FileVault 2 recovery key escrow solution." Yup, first thing that comes to mind. It would be nice if we could assemble a tool set without having to remember the pop culture and in-jokes of a bunch of 30 something nerds.

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Julie Larson-Green: Yes, MICROSOFT is going to KILL WINDOWS

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: The cart came first; then came a hunt for a ...

Ah yes, Microsoft Logistics Edition. I remember it well! The home version only allowed for one pig and a cart that could carry one item but the professional version was more useful. The reason few remember it was probably because per pig licensing costs inhibited adoption amongst smaller players and the cart access licences for cart loaders and carry items became confusing and expensive if not managed properly. Being an open carry cart the security model wasn't too good but there were a lot of third party addons to try and rectify the situation. There was one major problem, once a pig was hitched then corrosion in the fittings made it almost impossible to remove. Rather than fixing this Microsoft touted it as a feature and gave preferential licensing to original equipment manufacturers that shipped carts and pigs as a single product.

Of course there were open source carts whose design didn't have to be licensed but it was difficult to get SLA's. There were also Apple carts but there were always people attempting to upset them and Apple typically responded with the courts. No, Microsoft had a good operating environment back then. The capacity of the cart was only constrained by what you could pay – businesses were comfortable with that concept.

Piracy eventually killed the Logistics Edition, pigs were just too damn tasty.

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Australian Federal Police admit to slurping politicians' metadata

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Someone IS watching the watchers

The politicians have long since abdicated their role as watchers. Someone is watching the bottom feeders might be more correct. It is quite obvious that in the free West no one is watching the watchers, they are unfettered and unaccountable. Sort of makes you wonder who they are actually working for.

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'I'm BIG, I'm BALD and I'm LOUD!' Blubbering Ballmer admits HE was Microsoft's problem

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Tears for fears

The family were lucky, they had an emotional out. Consider poor Mr Smith...On the flight back to the US he told Microsoft's general counsel Brad Smith that it "might be the time for me to go." Nowhere to go, nothing to do but just sit there and nod.

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Microsoft's EAT-your-OWN-YOUNG management system AXED

GrumpyOldBloke

It would be interesting to know what drove this change. It is hard to believe the leadership team that has done so much for the company over the last decade has had an epipheny. Similarily for labour, there must be many unemployed in the US/India who have lost all shame and who would be prepared to put Microsoft on their resume. Dig deaper please el Reg, what couldn't they do or who couldn't they get under the stack rank system? Who in senior management happened across a Google tech talk or is recovering from head trauma?

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Cloud, virtualisation and big data added to TAFE curriculum

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Meh ...

I am not sure that emigration will save them. The West lost manufacturing to the global labour cloud and (some) moved up a layer of abstraction to services. We are now loosing services to global labour and technology clouds and some will have to move up another layer of abstraction to process, content and intelligence. We require new skill sets that allow us to mine value from these clouds, to create and charge for scarcity in a world of abundance. We already see the beginnings of this brave new world in the various collaborative platforms available on the internet and their ability to coordinate talent on a global scale. Open source was an early harbinger of this process. The biggest challenge such innovators will face will be collaborative approaches to IP and capital, free from the sticky fingers of the parasitic public sector and their corporate dinosaur lobbyists.

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Australia's Electoral Commission won't release vote-counting code

GrumpyOldBloke

Open Source

Because that is not the way government departments work. There has to be a chain of accountability that each drone can point to in order to avoid the possibility of being held responsible - especially if something goes wrong. Open source is a cancer of initiative, enthusiasm and achievement in a torrid soup of shared ideals. Such a system has no place in public life where compulsion, theft and self aggrandisement is more the norm.

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FACE IT: attempts to get Oz kids into IT jobs are FAILING

GrumpyOldBloke

Yet another industry group

Another misguided industry effort. From an employee standpoint the kids need to work for Chinese wages, be as vulnerable as Indian's on 457 visas, have all the knowledge of the state trained East Europeans and preferably be female. From a government standpoint the kids need to be entrepreneurs, pay for their own training preferably with debt and be prepared to front load their tax obligations. From and educationalist standpoint; just shut up and take your ADHD medication while I work out what colour skirt matches my shoes.

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IT'S patent WAR: Apple, Microsoft vs Google, Samsung, Huawei

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: rockstar? pfff!

Is CARTEL the acronym you are looking for?

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Dutch oven overcooked in World Solar Challenge

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: How bizarre!

Breaking the speed limit is a very easy thing to do in Oz. If the guy walking in front of your vehicle waving a red flag and ringing a bell decides to start jogging then you are done for. As advances in solar technology have already exceeded the petty tolerances of the various state and territory governments in Oz then how long can the solar challenge continue to be held there. They may as well perform the challenge on a race track in Malaysia.

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New digital curriculum draft softens CompSci emphasis

GrumpyOldBloke

Our public servants are crap at their own jobs let alone dreaming up futures and capabilities for the next generations. By 2030 Australia's corporate 'giants' will themselves be little more than outsourced shells, a brand and a 1800 number. Unless there is patent reform the well educated pool of young people will be cannon fodder for the lawyers or slave labour for the globalists. The Internet will very quickly destroy any value that gets past those two groups of vultures (no offense to this august publication). This leaves open source or crappy little app markets for those who have a passion for software and a day job as a mercenary, a clean source of live organs for a Northern Hemisphere market (assuming regrowth) or an aged care surrogate for those who survive the various depopulation efforts that the UN will dream up.

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Australia's anti-smut internet filter blueprint lasts LESS THAN A DAY

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: "We will introduce nationally agreed default..."

Have you not been following the democratic process all these years. First there is a solution which places greater power in the hands of grubyment low lifes, usually at the behest of other low lifes who seek to profit. Then a demonstrable problem that impacts very few in any significant way is discovered followed by a national debate in which selected opposing views are publicised and ridiculed. Then there is a vote that almost no one can attend and finally a law brought in by people scared to be seen as soft on whatever the problem was or who would otherwise only be able to point to a record of complete non-achievement in their careers and would therefore have nothing to say in post retirement books or speaking circuits. The Westminster system at its finest, everyone has a voice but no one is listening.

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Kiwis rally against 'snoops' charter' law

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Go Kiwis...

Don't expect anything to happen in NZ either. The don't smack your child rule was opposed by about 80% of the population yet these people were ignored. No point confusing democracy with any sort of accountability to the overall population.

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Bill Gates' nuclear firm plans hot, salty push into power

GrumpyOldBloke

No comments on the blue screen of death?

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Microsoft DENIES it gives backdoor access to Outlook encryption

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: "governments must continue to rely on legal process"

>As for "legal process", PRISM is legal.

Not if its unconstitutional.

Legality in the US does not automatically flow from the whims of the public service as it does in commonwealth countries.

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Apple needs help: iWatch, 'Retina' iPad mini delayed until 2014?

GrumpyOldBloke

How to make a smart watch cool.

That's easy, it is worn on the wrist against the skin. It only needs to look half decent and send pleasing little signals into the body in response to state changes and it will sell like hot cakes. Add location based advertising or NFC - again with pleasing feedback in response to mindless consumption - and you have the value proposition. Also a much better place to put the Ministry of Information's mics and cameras than a bulky rectangle with rounded corners that is all to often stuck in a pocket or a bag.

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Albanese takes telecoms ministry

GrumpyOldBloke

Albanese was the man who gave us mandatory full body scanning at Australian Int'l airports with no opt out clause and no limits on any future technology. The Greens opposed such sweeping powers being granted to the public service but Lab and Lib joined together to pass the bill and then applauded themselves afterwards. Albanese in charge of Australian telecommunications does not bode well for civil liberties in an internet world.

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BlackBerry introduces iOS and Android to Work Space

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: A smart company

Their unique selling point - secure business comms? Didn't they give that away when they started handing out decryption keys out to every public servant that shuffled towards them wearing an angry face? Their actions following the last major lot of UK riots further highlighted their willingness to sacrifice customers security if they thought there might be a pat on the head in it. Sorry RIM, say hello to Odin for us when you get to the great hall. Lets hope Odin doesn't look like Steve (either of them).

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Can Jonny Ive's new 'iOS Vista' SAVE the BBC's £100m BRAIN? Yes!

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: A germ of a good idea

The government does seem to have the crowd funding part of the process down pat.

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New material enables 1,000-meter super-skyscrapers

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Any rope is the problem

Not quite ready to throw away the rope - especially at todays energy prices. If your concern is that there can only be one car per shaft then there is no reason that the upper car(s) can't have a vertical tube through which pass the ropes of the cars below. It means the ropes would attach to cars a little off centre wasting energy on the rails but that would surely be less energy than hauling the entire weight of the elevator around without a counterweight. As for the lift 1, lift 2 ... lift n scenarios; destination call key pads would help but it would have to be accepted that there would be traffic patterns where all cars could not be used. Alternately an aggressive system of acceleration and deceleration coupled with trapdoors in the tops and bottoms of the cars could allow them to exchange their contents - or less aggressively a Russian doll type system.

Modeling could to be used to determine whether the extra complexity of multiple cars per shaft was worthwhile - perhaps a VB program. However, given that such systems are rare (non existent?) it may be that the extra complexity of multiple cars per shaft is not worth the benefit and it is easier to train people to stagger their usage.

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Al Gore: Stop using the atmosphere as 'AN OPEN SEWER'

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: Don't make me say it!

Military activities may be exempt from emissions trading schemes therefore no planet saving profit to be made there. Those who suffer murder death kill at the hands of the globalists do not go on to consume, pollute or breed so war may be carbon negative if looked at over the longer term. However, Al's focus is the rest of us; those who are not yet scheduled to die in some pointless activity for banker profit and who still have a few coins left after all the other shake downs. A net worth of ~$300M is just not enough for some people and we need to rally around Al and others like him to show our support to these unfortunate individuals who suffer poverty amidst so much wealth. So Mister D.A. Monsters, ask not what Al could do for himself but what you can do for Al. Just $10M may help Al to buy a more efficient corporate jet or another property a little bit closer to his next speaking engagement or shares in a water company to bring privatised water to people who might otherwise get it for free. It all adds up and we help to save the planet at the same time.

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China ponders joining controversial IP trade treaty

GrumpyOldBloke

re: Democracy is about electing leaders, not followers

That is certainly what the public servants and the politicians would have us believe and it is true of the old ways where they sat around having a frank exchange of views (thank you Roger Waters). I fear the people are now starting to think that the public servants have gone rogue and that democracy is about electing representatives. I note the English government now appears to be struggling with these seditionist thoughts in the masses.

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HTC woes prompts 'leave now' tweet from former staffer

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: A shame really

Plus you have to throw it away in three or four years when the battery expires - no more passing gadgets down to the in-laws. A terrible waste given the obvious effort they have put into manufacturing the phones.

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EU boffins in plan for 'more nutritious' horsemeat ice cream

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: I have no issue with this

It's horses for all courses...

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Google's cloud dumps custom Linux, switches to Debian

GrumpyOldBloke

Re: greatness

@MyBackDoor: I am not sure that Google's behaviour in this scenario is necessarily motivated by avarice. The scenario you describe would be the typical approach of someone coming in from the outside; I have a dream but first X, Y and Z must happen. A few months down the track and the realisation hits that X and Y are already present and Z just needs a few changes. Hat's off to Google for backing up and working with the community on Z rather than going off and inventing the wheel as other large corporate patent trolling companies might.

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