430 posts • joined Friday 27th May 2011 11:35 GMT
Re: It was promising...
The way I read it the corporate veil would be lifted in these cases, so the owners of the company (shareholders either corporate or human) would become liable for the costs should the patent holder corporate be unable to meet them. That would be aimed to stop the exploitation of the veil in these circumstances. But IANAL and I have not read the draft bill.
Re: not just faults
"Too many outfits I've worked at regard "testing" as merely checking the known input produces the expected output. They don't bother checking boundaries, error handling, scalability or resource-hogging."
Indeed. During a SAP test at my old employer I was told off for going off the script and trying to break it by putting in stupid data (letters in value fields etc), or forcing it to do something it shouldn't. "We don't have time to test that" being the answer. Oddly enough, launch was an unmitigated disaster as the users all tried to circumvent the controls (successfully) or put in data in the wrong fields breaking reports and searches. Ho-hum.
Re: Very interesting!
It is difficult to agree to Google's T&Cs when you are blissfully unaware that its advertising cookies are busy pimping your data. Even the tech-savvy Reg-heads above seem to forget that even avoiding obvious Google sites Jonny Internet User still gets tracked and monetised by Google.
The Dutch have a lever here - Google's tax schemes rely upon the use of a brass-plate company based in the Netherlands, a company that can't easily be switched to keep those lovely tax schemes in place. Register in the NL, you play by the NL rules no matter what you claim about the internet not being bound by such trifles.
Is back up, same as described in the article, buy something get a voucher towards something else.
Re: Why City of London Police?
Fraud Squad based there, Wood Lane I think.
I agree, up to a point. Now consider how much does it cost to track down a murderer for such a small return; it's not as if the deceased will come back to life, or the perp will pay some form of life debt to the deceased's family. Despite that it is VERY worthwhile for the police to pursue the crime.
In this case it is most likely (having done this sort of thing with financial fraud) that MS did all the work, put it in a nice box, handed it to the City boys and said "book him Danno". Hence, a relatively small cost to you, the taxpayer.
Is it really £100k? no. Is it worse than murder? no. Is it a crime? yes. Are we now saying that certain crimes should be ignored? How about shoplifting? A banana stolen from Sainsbury's won't hurt the big "S", so one would assume that because Sainsbury's makes money out of you it would be fine to steal from them. Only it's not.
Does anyone know...
If the perps actually do bother to decrypt, or just take the bitcoins and run? I mean, why would they need to bother once they have the cash? Perhaps they are rather odd semi-honest criminals.
Re: And why aren't they going after this group??
I remain bitterly disappointed that the much overused and lazy -gate suffix wasn't used in the form gategate as it did, in fact, concern a gate. I guess as we now have a scandal about the scandal we are now at gategategate.
Re: Yes well...
On fixing the roads I seem to find that every patch or manhole (can we say that?) cover is in a position such that it's exactly where my tyres on the passenger side are if I am driving in a correct position on the road. Can we fix that too, as so many of them are ill fitting (I assume because world+dog drives over them) or raised it's dangerous in its own right. So to avoid them you have to pull out into oncoming traffic, or clip the pavement, which is even more dangerous and stupid.
The country roads bit is interesting, but I have no idea on bend related statistics. By us an alarming number of fatal incidents occur on a straight section of road where people seem to love driving into a "Bikers Beware" sign at high speed.
Utterly agree on roadsigns. Far too many, and there is no need for most of the brown ones which seem to proliferate alarmingly.
Speed is difficult, the issue is around "appropriate" speed, which varies by road, weather, other users, time of day etc etc. I mean on the same stretch of road you could do 60mph one day, but realise the next that even exceeding 20mph could be a bit dumb. Instead we use a blunt instrument because it's too difficult to deal with otherwise.
"If I discovered a cheap and abundant energy source today and published it to the world, the entire global economy would collapse tomorrow."
Not too sure I follow the reasoning here - what's the chain of causation you have in mind? Not saying you are wrong I just lack the insight to tie together the idea that relatively cheap (at least it would be cheap at the margin, as in the next MWh costs next to nothing, but the first one is really quite expensive) relatively clean and almost unlimited power would destroy the world's economy within 24 hours of it being turned on.
Re: Fusion & Free Clean Energy For All?
Indeed, especially as you can get there 20 minutes earlier by catching the previous train.
We had JET don't forget, and there is that massive thing in France that many countries have given cash to. Sadly it's just not as "politically useful" as many things, because the commissioning politician won't be in office or possibly even alive when it's realised.
I do wonder if calling it the "[Insert Politico of your choice] Power of the Future Research Establishment" would encourage funding purely as a massive ego stroke.
I thought "the future will be better tomorrow" (c) J Danforth Quayle
Re: Can we have .....
I think it went on to mention "synergies" and "paradigm shifts" before having some blue sky thinking out of the box giving a helicopter view of the hot buttons. Or something.
My old employer did this too. Instead of the appraisal (which everybody hates anyway) being over fairly quickly we had people gaming the system, and actively trying to sabotage rivals. Not exactly goal congruent. Then after we’d had our appraisals there was a moderation process to see if we’d been judged fairly. This was rubbish and simply down office politics, so if you were “in” with the manager who shouted and bullied you’d get a good rating because he said you were a “good chap” (or woman) and he would protect his cronies. Others doing a better job but with more moderate managers would suffer. This process took weeks, and removed senior management from the business for much of that time. All that to fit a distribution curve that some HR wonk said was how it should be.
No wonder people left.
I did see a fraud at a company that did “rank and yank” whereby the bottom 5% of rated employees would be removed each year. As it was so bloody stupid and morale damaging several enterprising managers put ghost employees into their team, paid them a salary and then sacked them at the end of the year. The salaries were collected by real employees and divided up amongst the team at year-end. The team was happy with this game, senior management not so much.
Re: Dr. Who + B7 video game...
Didn't the Liberator feature in the BBC/Electron game "Starship Commander"?
I could never see that either. I mean giving a reaction from Twitter is about as journalistically sound as hailing a cab and getting a quote from the driver. Or passenger. Or both.
Todays gushfest practically credits Twitter with the invention of the hashtag. I remember it in use on IRC before Twitter's founders were born (possibly) and it may well predate that too.
What amazes me most is that the BBC tech people can use Twitter - finding # on a Mac keyboard isn't all that obvious...
Interesting, BMI from the Isle of Man to and from the UK insist upon photo ID. I have no idea why there would be a difference.
Consistency - we've heard of it.
My guess would be the requirements would be similar to the KYC financial regulations. As long as a landlord has a copy of [insert document] on file (s)he has done her/his best to verify the status of the applicant. If it looks okay (as in not a letter from the tenant's mum for example) then you'd be in the clear.
As the article says the number of landlords (or indeed anyone) able to spot a fake ID from the myriad on offer will be insanely low.
Don't forget how many MPs are also landlords - them getting it wrong would be newsworthy (witness illegal immigrant cleaners in the past for example) so you can't make the barrier too high for their sake.
Surely double secret probation would be more appropriate?
Anechdotes and evidence...
I've run a few classes over the last few weeks and out of interest asked if any of the students would invest in Twitter. I've put up the basis of the deal from the actual offer documents, and just done a straw poll. To make it a little more scientific I did ask all of them to close their eyes before holding their hands up (there is comfort in numbers in these things, so I wanted to stop that). So far out of around 150 students only three, yes, three would invest. It's not a good representation, but it's all I have.
My point - I feel a bit better. As if some of the future has some common sense.
She was, apparently speeding. If correct then that's illegal irrespective of what she had on her face.
Secondly - what's a google+ page?
very, very unique...?
Unique is "existing as the only one". You can't be "very" unique any more that one could be "slightly" pregnant or very dead.
Re: Knowing the way beancounters work...
Nokia 3310s, surely?
He was at work, was threatened, got shot at, was hit by a bullet (well, his phone was) and you call all that LUCKY?
That's a bad luck day at the office by anyone's standards.
It's a TIE fighter!
But without the wing-things. I hope it makes the noise.
Re: David Braben's supposed to be quite litigious, isn't he?
Well, Frontier is available as shareware - http://www.sharoma.com/frontierverse/game.htm and Ian Bell has just about every version of Elite on his website.
Emulators required, natch.
"Maybe there should be a standard placebo 'antibiotic' for these cases"
It's an interesting idea, but ethically dubious. Your doctor would have to lie to you when prescribing the placebo because (s)he would obviously know it's a sugar pill. This applies to all prescriptions of placebos, not just here. Having your doctor lie to you, even if it's in your own and society's interests erodes the trust that should exist between the two parties.
Once this "got out" that "apoxylalacillin" is a placebo there would be a backlash against the medical profession, claims of "big pharma" conspiracies, and possibly the movement of people away from medicine and towards alternative therapies because "doctors lie about medicines". Now the latter is fine if it's a self-correcting problem like a cold, but could be fatal if the patient had a serious condition that really wasn't going to be helped by a nice cup of herb tea and a dangling crystal.
Education has to be part of the solution. The general lack of knowledge of basic medical matters is appalling. I'm not advocating that everyone should be a doctor, just that there must be room on the curriculum somewhere to teach about antibiotics, anti-virals, why most drugs will not resolve the problem instantly, why to always finish the dose of any drug course, how to deal with simple injuries, why going to casualty with athlete's foot is a dumb idea etc. etc.
there also needs to be support for doctors refusing to prescribe where it is not necessary. Maybe upon refusal to prescribe the patient is given a form where the doctor writes on it "viral infection, no suitable medication" and the patient can send it off as a complaint. The patient then gets back from NHS Complaints Central a letter saying that no prescription would help, and have they noticed how they now feel better as their very own immune system has sorted it out.
Yes, to confirm the answer given by others. Bacteriophages are viruses that exploit bacteria. They are quite specific, usually binding to specific proteins stuck in the cell walls of the host bacteria. So the example I gave above, phage lambda, only binds and infects Escerichia coli.
That in and of itself is a mixed blessing, as there are a lot of E coli in you right now doing you lots of good. There are some "rogue strains" of it that will cause problems, such as you hear about on the news from time to time.
It's been a long time since I studied them, but I am unaware of any Clostridium species being good news. These bad boys include C tetani - gives you tetanus, C botulinum - gives you botulism via botulinium toxin (which I think is the single most toxic thing known) and usually death. This is the stuff celebs have diluted preparations of injected into their faces. Then there is C difficle, which is a tough little fella that kills people via any one of a number of horrid gastric manners. It forms spores which are resistant to heat, antibiotics, cold and ethanol. Which is a shame, as that's how we try and sterilise most things. To add to the problem they live in many people quite harmlessly, and flare up when the other gut bacteria are killed off (say by antibiotic or chemotherapy). Then they are a problem, so if the phages could be delivered to the gut to attack them it would give the good guys a chance to come back before the host is dead.
Should the phages "escape" they won't do much harm, they should only bind to C difficile. The two of them will have been in an evolutionary arms race for time out of mind, so nothing much will happen to upset the balance of the general eco-system.
Maybe we need a sort of "notfacebook.com" website full of alternative things to do, a bit like a "why don't you... " on the internet.
May I add as a couple of suggestions "brew beer", "sort out the loft and play with your old lego", "learn to speak Arrapahoe" etc etc.
This is a really good idea. As far as I know no eukaryote (just about all living things bar bacteria) has ever been infected by a bacterophage despite us eating millions of them every day, having them in cuts, on our hands etc. So, this is clever as it should not lead to the microbiological equivalent of a cane toad problem but should deal with the very nasty bugs.
Phages are not too badly understood once studied, they have so few genes that the complete lifecycle (using the term "life" in its loosest possible way) can be seen at the molecular level. A quick search on phage lambda (that one targets E coli) would show you the exact actions taken from infection, through celluar "hijack" to bacterial death (usually through bursting, called lysis). The phage is interesting as it has genes running left and right on its genetic sequence, and we know pretty well how they work. Oh, and they look really cool too.
Re: Just curious ...
Actually let's face it, we need the cash here in Europe, so let's just take that. If Apple wants to hand some in too that's cool; we're not fussy who gives us the cash.
Is MSFT actively trying to irritate its users? In the YAC household we have three computers, so (should I feel the urge, which I don't, especially as two are Macs) to update them all I would have to download an incredible 10.5GB of updates. This will stretch the very limits of "unlimited" broadband for many poor souls who want to upgrade.
What's so hard about one iso, or other image that could be burned to DVD/thumbdrive/whatever.
Perhaps it's a slap for daring to say "actually, we don't like this new fangled Metro stuff all that much."
by Frederick Forsyth has a low-tech version of this as its central premise.
Internet Connected TVs are still rapidly rising
Just out of curiosity - is this a corollary? If nearly all new TVs have an ethernet port stuck on the back, won't the sales rise as TVs are replaced? I can't believe there are many people having "internet connectivity" as a priority above, say "screen size" or "picture quality", or "price", but if it's just bundled along then they have a conencted TV.
It's a bit like when we switched to colour TV, over time the proportion of colour sets made increased, and eventually even if you wanted a black and white TV you ended up with a colour one.
New users, and The Economist
Some time back The Economist published an article about its view of the economic state of Scotland ceding from the Union. Almost instantly the comments were drowned by users registering to shout about how Scotland would be welcomed back to the EU, how everyone there would earn more, how all the oil would go north, how the south would have to pay for the clean-up bill when it was all done, and even, quite remarkably that any oil found in the Falklands would also belong to Scotland.
Anyhow, this seems to have happened here too. Several new user pop up today, post only to this article and only pro independence.
Herewith my question - is there some part of the SNP that monitors the internet for stories about Scotland, then registers on those forums to ensure that the Party Line is shouted about?
Re: How useful!
My car has this, and does not react to plastic bags. Mind you, I have not noticed it do anything, ever. That may be because I've already taken the action needed or because it doesn't work. It seems churlish to test it by getting my wife to jump in front of the car and see if I run her over or not.
Don't forget these things are only set to do stuff at relatively low speeds, reducing the possibility of the rear-ending.
A rear-end shunt is always the problem of the tailing car. The driver should leave an adequate gap. Of course, no consolation to you if you are the chap up front.
Re: Details please.
Exactly, like this bit here:
"GCHQ intelligence has played a vital role in stopping many of the terrorist plots that MI5 and the police have tackled in the past decade. "
MANY of the PLOTS - I only seem to be aware of at most a couple, the water on planes nonsense being that one. How many have been stopped? What about those without GCHQ input?
We only ever seem to be trying to prevent the last terrorist attack, not the next.
Re: It's a good start. @Khaptain 05:47
Blimey Godwin already.
Anyway, a few things:
1) 59% saying “Christian” means nothing on the census other than they were born in the west and told by their parents that’s what they are, and they tick the box. How many were Jedi? Does that make Jedi a religion?
2) Atheism by its very definition is not a religion, it is the absence of one.
3) “Got mit uns” – Hitler was a Catholic in at the least the same way all of your 59% are. Even if you now choose to distance yourselves, then why did all the Catholics follow him, surely they would have seen at the time what an evil thing was happening. Or was god too busy to point it all out to them?
The Scouts have done something very correct here dropping the god bit. Of course, they could keep it, in which case I suggest non-religious types head for The Woodcraft Folk. Like Scouts, but no religion.
Did EA install this lot?
Re: I'm sure
That's not very original.
re: top v bottom
Indeed, yeasts do that and have been bred (old style genetic modification) to do that. You could solve it by centrifuge too.
What's also interesting is the C02 made during fermentation. Part of the reason beer doesn't spoil while brewing is that it forms a blanket of CO2 over the top, which being slightly more dense than oxygen and nitrogen forces the yeast to anaerobically respire, hence the alcohol. (another aside, you personally make ethanol all the time using the same process). You can help this along a bit with a bubble trap, but I'm unsure how that would work in microgravity.
Also, as it forms in the beer the the CO2 bubbles up to the top, would the bubbles just stay suspended?
What a great idea for a project.
Waking Shark 2
I guess there was some residual cognisance of the industry in my mind when I read that name, and I mentally inserted a spurious "n" in the first word, just before the "k" when I read it. I actually thought "what a breath of fresh air, the industry recognising exactly what it is."
"Business as usual"
I think Cook is trapped in a difficult place. The Apple Faithful are there because of the Cult of Jobs, with whom Apple had "The Cool™". Jobs would jump on stage and punch well above Apple's weight. People in the UK watching him on video screens would sigh, scream and applaud as he unveiled the next shiny trinket. Media types loved him, and his products.
With him gone Cook feels the need to try and wear the polo neck and do the same things, but he's, well, just too much of an accountant. he needs to be Tim Cook and not Steve Jobs. Investors want a Steve Jobs, so he feels compelled to dance to that tune. Jobs being venerated does not help - he had hits and misses, but in eulogising the misses are forgotten.
This is the same issue up the coast at Redmond, where (quite rightly) investors are saying to MS' old guard "Go. It is time for change. Thanks for making this one of the biggest corporations in the world, now leave it to someone who can take it forward". The spectres of Gates and Ballmer at the board table will hamstring any incoming leader. The Board venerates Gates too much, he needs to go for good. Properly.
This is not new, all companies were start-ups at some point, often via some precocious charismatic upstart who'd be a difficult act to follow (Henry Ford anyone?). The trick is letting the upstart go and moving on the next phase of history.
Back to Cook - I think Apple would be better served with him back in supply chain and a new, external, clear thinking "visionary" to take the big corner office. Quite who that is, I don't know.
Re: Most fun I ever had
...and that is one reason why having differing sized notes is such a good idea...
Don't really get the link...
Does the study show that women make IT more profitable?
Or is it saying that there are empty positions which could be filled by suitably qualified women (or one would assume suitably qualified men)?
It's an interesting training point for firefighters that when attending a vehicle collision/fire they need to think about fuel sources. If we have ostensibly identical cars (yes, I know, cars look different but one inferno is very like another, and some twisted wrecks will be hard to ID) with some combination of one or more of petrol/diesel/lithium/fuel cell it makes "how to deal with this" key decisions difficult.
Are we heading towards a point where every vehicle needs a clearly visible code (like those orange decals on tankers) telling firefighters instantly what they are dealing with?
or "As you wish".
To coin a phrase
"You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means"
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