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* Posts by Steven Roper

1207 posts • joined 10 May 2011

Amnesty International UK site flung Gh0st RAT at surfers after hack

Steven Roper
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I always thought it was

"When we hang the capitalists, they will sell us the rope we use."

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Third teen TeamPoison hack suspect quizzed by cyber-cops

Steven Roper
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Facepalm

What's the bet

this guy comes up with a diagnosis of Asperger's Syndrome at some point during the trial? Most likely right after he's found guilty and is facing jail for umpteen years...

I lay odds of 8:1 in favour.

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Grab your L-plates, flying cars of sci-fi dreams have landed

Steven Roper
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Stop

Re: Power requirements

Any form of flight will have vastly greater power requirements than ground travel. This is because in order to fly, you have to overcome gravity (duh!).

Now gravity is a constant downward acceleration of 9.8 m/s/s. This translates, in carspeak, to 0 - 100 km/h (62 mph) in 2.8 seconds. That's right, the acceleration imparted by gravity is greater than that of any production sports car, and greater than that of most sports motorbikes. You show me any commercially available ground vehicle capable of 0-100 km/h in 2.8 seconds! Even if there is one that I don't know about, I'd wager its fuel consumption would be a strong discouragement to commuter use!

In order to fly, any vehicle must overcome this downward acceleration with an equivalent upward acceleration. That means consuming the equivalent power required to accelerate from 0-100 in 2.8 s constantly, every second it's in the air, just to hover or maintain altitude. If it needs to climb, it has to surpass this power consumption; that is, be able to achieve the equivalent of 0-100 in less than 2.8 s!

This is why even little Cessnas have the equivalent of a Dodge Viper motor under the bonnet. It's the reason why aircraft get such shitty per-litre mileage. It's why flying is such a major cause of emissions. And it's why flying vehicles en masse is completely impractical - because it will, no matter how efficient we make such vehicles, always consume much more power than ground travel, just to stay in the air.

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Google's self-driving car snags first-ever license in Nevada

Steven Roper
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Pint

Re: Potential cash cow?

Not only will they slow down on passing advertisers' billboards and shops, the GPS will "mysteriously" plot a circuitous and serpentine route from A to B that will take you slowly past every advertiser in the country.

Birmingham to London via Leeds, Norwich and Exeter anyone?

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Steven Roper
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Go

Re: Taxis will be second

"Hi! I'm Johnnycab! Where can I take you tonight?"

Wonderful - a taxi that automatically rams the nearest building and explodes in a huge fireball when some chav fare-dodges, instead of just shouting and beating the shit out of them.

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'ACTA is dead,' says Europe's digital doyenne

Steven Roper
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@ Jeebus Re: Orlowski

Nah, that post doesn't quite read like Orlowski. It's too up itself. Andrew at least makes an effort to put some justification into his rants. That particular one reads more like something Turtle would write.

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US, Euro e-car makers back 'standard' AC/DC jack

Steven Roper
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Re: What was wrong...with micro USB

Well, for one thing, maybe astromech droids like R2D2 need to be able to tell the difference between a data port and a power socket?

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Megan Fox fingers fondleslab in sexy store promo

Steven Roper
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...youngsters even now drooling over the pic...

Phew (or should that be Phwoar), I'm still a youngster then, even at 45! Thanks for the compliment guys.

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iPad chargers can open beer bottles

Steven Roper
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Which will no doubt will only make the lawyers richer

since Apple will have patented bottle openers before that happens.

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Chinese passports to get chipped

Steven Roper
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10 million passport holders

out of a country of 1,347,350,000 people.

That comes out to about 0.74 per cent of the population are allowed to leave the country, less than 1%.

In this age when we like to compare our (UK, USA, Aus etc) governments to that of China, this sorta puts things back in perspective. Lest we forget the Bamboo Curtain, like the Iron Curtain of Cold War provenance, is there to keep people in, not out. Because communism works, right?

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Virgin Media cuts Pirate Bay access for millions of punters

Steven Roper
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Facepalm

Re: No, You need to get real.

You do realise, Doug Glass / JimC / PirateSlayer / Turtle, that downvotes still count against your named account even when you post AC, don't you?

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Glider pilot 'swallowed camera memory' say plunge tragedy cops

Steven Roper
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Re: "....we are in the waiting stages right now."

There is one. But instead of a paperclip, you just need a pair of rubber gloves.

>snap< >snap< >ooOOOOEERR!!<

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Botnet army flicks 'off' switch at UK crime agency website

Steven Roper
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Re: Public overreaction in Daily Mails

The unit you refer to should actually be in microDailyMails (μDMs) because, just as 1 c is the maximum possible speed of sheep in a vacuum, 1 DailyMail is the maximum possible amount of public overreaction to any conceivable event.

Therefore, where μDM = any possible amount of public overreaction, the range is 0 < μDM < 1. Note that zero is impossible to achieve because there is always some public overreaction; likewise 1 is impossible to achieve (except in the pages of the Daily Mail itself) because total public overreaction (100% of the population) would result in the total collapse of civilisation past the Daily Mail Event Horizon (otherwise known as the Daily Mail comments pages.)

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Why embossed credit cards are here to stay

Steven Roper
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Re: A minor irritation with the numbers

I also do exactly this on my company's websites.

It's a single line of code, along the lines of:

$ccpan = preg_replace('/\D/', '', $_POST['ccpan'] );

So there's really no excuse, and any programmer that doesn't do it is either incompetent or just plain fucking lazy, or both, and should be sacked forthwith.

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Steven Roper
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Re: That wouldn't be in the US...

The other big clue about that not being in the US is the use of the word "petrol" as opposed to "gas"...

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Baidu sets up shop in Australia

Steven Roper
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The first searches

I do on baidu.com.au (when it comes online) will be "Tiananmen Square Massacre", "Falun Gong", and "Free Tibet". If the first page of results link to Tank Man or pages about freeing Tibet I'll definitely consider switching from Google. If the search gets blocked or redirected to Communist Party propaganda, then I won't be. That's my acid test for them.

The question is, will Baidu extend Chinese censorship and propaganda beyond their borders or not?

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Star Trek's Wesley Crusher blasts Google+ landgrab

Steven Roper
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FAIL

Re: What social sites ...

Both Facebook and Google+ clearly state in their ToS that they will terminate your account if they find out that you've supplied a false name, and they won't allow you to use a single nom-de-plume; you have to supply a first and last name.

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Facebook button triggers tidal wave of human organs

Steven Roper
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Re: Breaking News ....

Hello, errr, can we have your liver?

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Steven Roper
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Liver and onions?

I prefer mine with some fava beans and a nice chianti...

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Computer prices down 8.1% per year … since 1984

Steven Roper
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Re: Cost of living increase benign?

"Average house sizes in Oz have gone from approx 150sqm (1500sq ft or so) to over 240sqm (2400 sqft)"

That's true for the new McMansions getting built, but 1) plot sizes have halved since the 70s, so 2) most of those houses have no garden to speak of, the house goes practically to the fence line as a result.

My parents' place, which they bought in 1974, is around 160 sqm - but it's on a 1/4 acre block, and actually has a front and back yard. Just up the road from them is a 'new' estate (now about 10 years old) with an average block size of 1/8 acre. The effect is visually startling. My name for the new estate - Sardine City - reasonably conveys that visual impact.

Yet the valuation on my parents' house is around $430,000, and one of the McMansions near there recently sold for $480,000. So it's not house size that has much to do with the ludicrous prices mate. It's rank greed on the part of baby boomer property investors, the government, and real estate companies. A difference of 11% for a house three times the size IS an apples to apples comparison.

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Steven Roper
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Cost of living increase benign?

Bollocks. Electricity has gone through the roof over here - South Australia now has the most expensive electricity on the PLANET. Not only that, but housing prices have also exploded, to the point where a normal suburban home will set you back around half a million dollars. Rents have increased accordingly. Most working class people are now spending more than the recommended third of their income on housing because of the insane property prices in this country. and these increased costs have had a flow-on effect to everything else.

Basic foodstuffs have remained relatively stable, as have consumer electronics, although how I don't know, considering petrol, energy, housing and everything else have gone nuts over here.

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iTunes fanbois outraged by Apple's sex-life quiz probe

Steven Roper
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Devil

@ Graham Marsden

Not really a good question, since it's a yes-no answer, giving crooks a 50% chance of getting it. Oh wait, scratch that: you're pretty guaranteed to get it right by simply answering "no", since given Apple's track record of deliberately bricking jailbroken devices, no fanboi would actually admit to having jailbroken one to Apple, even if they have.

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Steven Roper
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Re: Least favourite job

>implying chavs buy Apple gadgets...

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Steven Roper
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@ItsNotMe

I always put my DOB as 20 July 1969 (the day of the Moon landing). It's only a few years+months after my actual birth date, so it doesn't arouse suspicion with regard to my physical age, and Dad getting me out of bed to watch Armstrong give his famous speech on the telly, is my earliest childhood memory - hence the day I was "born" to my own awareness.

Only my bank and certain government agencies have my real DOB (which given said agencies' propensity for USB sticks, laptops and trains probably means world+dog have it by now anyway!)

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WA sex criminals get tracked by satellite

Steven Roper
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I give it

10 years before all men are required to wear one of these, because all men are rapists and sex offenders, right?

Considering the feminist bias of the mods on this forum, I'll be amazed if this gets published. But I'll say it anyway, because the man-haters can't hide the truth forever. Most people know what's going on despite all the efforts at censorship.

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Computer nostalgia is 10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

Steven Roper
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Unhappy

For me, the past WAS a happier time

I do remember the past as a "happier time", because although the computers have improved far beyond my expectations of those days, people have not. I recall back in those days you could speak your mind without having to worry about "offending" someone, and people were nowhere near as precious as they are now. In an age when political correctness has replaced common sense, and fear for safety has replaced freedom, how can anyone who remembers the 70s and 80s not mourn for what we've lost?

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China backs Proview in Apple iPad trademark war

Steven Roper
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FAIL

Judging by the downvote distribution...

it sure is fanboi in here...

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Commentards! Know a good hosting firm? Recommend a good laptop?

Steven Roper
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For hosting

I use and recommend SrsVPS (srsvps.com), they're cheap, reliable and hosted in Romania so it's beyond the reach of the copyright mafia (not so much for piracy, but losing your data a la Megaupload comes to mind.) I've been using them as my personal cloud storage for the last 3 months and haven't had a problem yet.

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3.2 billion pixel sky-watcher a step closer

Steven Roper
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Stop

Erm..

"skywatcher will survey – and publish – the entire visible sky on a weekly basis"

No it won't. Not unless it can see through thousands of miles of solid and molten rock. As I recall, Chile is in the southern hemisphere, so siting it there means that it won't be taking any pictures of the Ursa Minor / Draco / Ursa Major part of the sky any time soon...

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Ten... eight-bit classic games

Steven Roper
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And my top 5 old faves (C64) were

1. Mercenary - Escape From Targ (I spent weeks playing that, wandering around the city looking for keys and unattended vehicles to steal, and it was the first game I ever actually completed without help or walkthroughs)

2. SubLogic Flight Simulator II (After I bought it, I found it was disk-only, so I want straight out and laid-by a 1541 so I could play it. I actually kept a logbook and racked up more than 1000 hours flight time on the thing!)

3. Raid Over Moscow (Along with Beach Head I and II, Bruce Carver's games had just that right level of precision-related frustration to keep me going on them for ages)

4. Bugaboo The Flea (This had that infuriating control system whereby the longer you held the space bar the more power was built up allowing the flea to jump higher and further. It drove me mad trying to line up on the various platforms, but somehow the ambience and atmosphere of the game just caught me)

5. Fight Night. (Unique among fighting games in that you could custom-create your own boxer by setting attack and defence strength to head and body and so on. My brother and I spent weeks experimenting until we created the perfect boxer, who we called "Killer" and defeated every other boxer we put against him - nor could we beat him ourselves!)

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Micro Focus accuses NSW Police of software piracy

Steven Roper
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State police aren't interested in copyright

since it's outside their jurisdiction.

Case in point: A few years ago the police attended the house of a friend of mine concerning a runaway child, and saw my friend torrenting the latest Simpsons episode. My friend thought he was busted for sure, but the cop actually asked him how to set up bittorrent so he could get the latest show for his kids!

My friend and the cop ended up having a friendly half-hour conversation on how to set up bittorrent and the best sites to go to to download TV shows, music, and other copyrighted content.

So much for copyright law in this country, when even the police aren't bothered about it (the Federal cops, though, are another matter!)

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Apple sued for every touchscreen device by Flatworld prof

Steven Roper
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Devil

Normally

I absolutely hate patent trolls who sit on the sidelines and say nothing until someone successfully markets a product, and then they grab for a piece.

But in this case, since it's Apple he's attacking, I wish him every success and I hope he bites them in the arse for billions. If he were able to bankrupt the bastards that would be joyous, but that's probably hoping for too much.

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From the Department of WTF: New USB tampon flash drive

Steven Roper
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And you think

that the kind of perv who would steal a tampon would prefer one that is white as opposed to, erm, "used"?

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iiNet wins High Court trial

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...and you pay us what we think is appropriate..."

...each and every time you watch / listen to something until we tell you it's no longer available.

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German scientists link two labs with ‘universal quantum network’

Steven Roper
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Facepalm

So...

given all the hoo-ha recently about supposedly FTL neutrinos and the LHC not being FTL after all, and now this, possibly indicating that information can possibly be transmitted FTL anyway - was Einstein right or not? Make up your bloody minds, people!

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US Trade Rep criticises tech trade barriers in Oz, NZ

Steven Roper
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Mushroom

And the USTR

can FUCK RIGHT OFF out of our two countries. The very things it is complaining about are the few things our governments are actually doing right! Shows just how the "land of the free" is full of it. The whole USA government can take it's corporate dictatorship shite and piss off, thank you very much.

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DARPA boffins seek Terminator-style disaster-zone rescue robot

Steven Roper
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WTF?

$34m to build a robot

capable of all that, with today's tech? You might get a dishwashing routine added to your RealDoll for that price!

Add another zero to that figure and we'll talk.

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Woz warns that patent palaver will stifle startups

Steven Roper
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Mushroom

I have a saying that is most apropos here, Wozniak

"The vilest evil is that which is convinced of its own virtue."

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Forensic snoops: It doesn't take a Genius to break into an iPhone

Steven Roper
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Stop

@Steve Renouf

Considering how unjust the laws are these days and how our so-called "democracies" have somehow become corporate dictatorships there's plenty of things to hide that, while now illegal, are still within the realm of basic human rights - which our legislators are increasingly ignoring.

Just because lawmakers have become corporate puppets doesn't mean the public has given up its right of resistance.

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China's Internet Society backs online censorship

Steven Roper
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Big Brother

All this reminds me of something...

Bo Xilai now unperson all refs doubleplusungood correct immediately upsub antefiling.

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Commodore founder Jack Tramiel dies at 83

Steven Roper
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RIP Jack.

I owe you my career. Without your invaluable and incredible contribution to mainstream computing in the form of the C64, I wouldn't have got into computers and wouldn't have the skills I have today, and I'm sure many of us here can say the same. Rest in peace, sir, and may your legacy long endure.

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'Super rogue wave' scuppers Lego pirate

Steven Roper
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Same here

Since Apple products are banned in my home, including their software, I guess I don't get to see the video either.

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Windows XP support ends two years from now

Steven Roper
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FAIL

Re: @ Bob Vistakin

Nice strawman there AC. Bob never said everyone who disagreed with him was a shill. He merely remarked that this and other forums were "infested" by paid shills. Which I don't doubt. El Reg has a big enough readership and a far enough reach to be of interest to the big boys.

And if you think there are no shills on El Reg, you might want to look at this xkcd post and think again. There's a very good reason why companies like Apple and Microsoft would astroturf here.

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Five charged after fanboi sells kidney for iPad and iPhone

Steven Roper
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And nothing of value was lost

so just stand back and let Darwin do his job.

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Arizona bill makes it illegal to 'annoy or offend' online

Steven Roper
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I notice

some people on here are blaming the "conservative" right for this law. I personally would put this one at the feet of the politically-correct "liberal" left, since they're the ones that preach "tolerance" and "acceptance" while being more intolerant and unaccepting of those whose opinions differ from the official PC worldview, than any historical fascists ever were.

Consider how dangerous (even potentially career-destroying) it has become to publicly say anything that is politically incorrect these days. The irony is that while so many people profess to despise political correctness, large numbers of those same people will blow their fuses in fury and demand resignations the moment somebody says something that is actually un-PC.

Not "annoy or offend"? Only PC proponents - and that's the lefties - would demand legislation banning "offending" people.

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Google plonks reCAPTCHA on Street View, makes users ID your house

Steven Roper
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A couple of years ago

4chan ran a campaign to replace the "unknown" word in captchas with a well-known anti-African racial slur. As I recall, they pushed it for several months - but I never saw the slur nor any effect from it either in captchas or in Google Books as a result. Even with 4chan pushing it, I consider it highly unlikely that that their numbers made a significant difference against the huge numbers of people who at least attempted to get it right.

And even if there were enough trolls to make a difference, I'm sure the Oompa-loompas would pick up on it sooner or later and simply erase the effect of anyone entering that word - after all, they would already have made sure that racial slurs and other un-PC words wouldn't make it into the captcha system anyway, for fear of lawsuits.

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Game of Thrones Blu-ray disc set

Steven Roper
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FAIL

Oh no...

I've seen this before - with Legend of the Seeker. I thought LotS was a brilliant series, with loads of plot twists and a real examination of trust and treachery, but then, come the second season, loads of people started rubbishing it, for no good reason, to the point where it got canned on a cliffhanger.

What I'm seeing in this thread is the start of the same thing again. People whose interpretational abilities probably can't encompass anything beyond Idol and Big Brother start weighing in and rubbishing a brilliant show. So now it'll probably be canned at the end of Season 2, just like LotS was, just because the millions of Idol-watching retards have to open their whining mouths.

Downvote me all you want; I don't care. I love GoT and would love to see it last a few more seasons, but I have a feeling the hordes of armchair critics will put paid to it before it has a chance to go anywhere.

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Terrafugia flies first prototype: Flying cars 'within a year'

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Upvoted

for the "My Family" sticker reference.

Anyone with one of those on their car is someone I automatically classify as "sheeple"!

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Steven Roper
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Screw the flying cars, jet packs and robot wives!

- wake me up when they can rejuvenate my telomeres and give me the body of a 25-year-old for the next 500 years!

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Busted in the US? 'Drop your trousers, sir'

Steven Roper
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And the next step

is strip searches of the public anywhere, for any reason. That's the next freedom to be taken away. Oh, and you can bet Australia will follow in quick succession like we do with everything else US.

My money's on 2018 as being the year we finally have no freedoms or rights left at all.

Just to recap what we've lost so far:

Right to be charged before detention: gone

Right to counsel on arrest: gone

Habeus corpus: gone

Right to trial and right of defence: gone

Double jeopardy: gone

Statute of limitations: gone

Freedom of speech: gone

Freedom of assembly: gone

Right of first sale: gone

Right of privacy: gone

Right to own computing device and data: almost gone (once Windows 7 is grandfathered out)

Anyone think of any others?

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