* Posts by auburnman

917 posts • joined 28 Jul 2011

Douglas Adams was RIGHT! TINY ALIENS are invading Earth, say boffins

auburnman
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Facepalm

Re: LOHAN contamination.

Other balloons? Rocket launches? For my money the microbes hitched a lift up to that altitude on the same flight as the sampling kit. Their shield may have prevented the sample drawer being contaminated directly by the balloon, but the balloon must have contaminated the atmosphere being sampled. Or the microbes were on the outside of the sampling box and shook loose at sample time. I can't see how this method could possibly produce an uncontaminated sample (Which unfortunately makes it likely their efforts will shortly be 'successfully' replicated.)

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Windows Phone overtakes Apple's market share ... in India

auburnman
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Behind the times (but catching up)

Looks like the call centre countries have just reached the "no one got fired for buying Microsoft" Phase of the modern business world.

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It's Grand Theft Auto 5 day: Any of you kids remember GTA the First?

auburnman
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Joke

Re: Not as good as Carmageddon

BURN THE HERETIC

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Apple named in criminal lawsuit over Premier League–streaming app

auburnman
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There is precedent for it - Executives for Google Italy have been found criminally liable before.

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/02/02/google-executives-face-jail-time-for-italian-video/?_r=0

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Paypal not sure if its bargepole is long enough for crowdfunding

auburnman
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The big downside of crowdfunding is the buyers take on all the financial risk that were usually shouldered by financial investors, but without the clout that comes with owning shares in the company. The large distribution of investment should mean that in the event of failure millions of people could lose a hundred quid or so instead of massive financial hits to a couple of investors.

Individuals haven't adjusted to this level of risk though, we have been spoiled by the consumer protections we are afforded in modern society where if you pay for a product or service you are entitled to it or otherwise have some legal recourse.

Perhaps the way forward is for Kickstarter and the like to partner with insurance companies; an optional few quid on each transaction to guarantee your money back in the event the venture goes tits up. They could also examine proposals as part of the insurance process and give a risk rating to projects (e.g. warning flags on projects where a single dude with no experience is promising something like an Ouya within 3 months.)

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Dominant web ad giant (Google) possibly 'weeks' away from Euro slapdown

auburnman
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Re: So where is the "abuse of dominance"???

It's also possible that this crackdown is being encouraged behind the scenes as punishment for Google daring to decline to pay more taxes when the MP's puffed up their chests and crowed that they would take Big Business to task.

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Everybody Loves Rayman: Legends dethrones Mario

auburnman
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Rayman delay on Wii U

It's a sad indictment of Nintendo's stature nowadays that a big publisher will actually go out of their way NOT to give them a console exclusive.

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David Attenborough warns that humans have stopped evolving

auburnman
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Re: Naturalist! = evolutionary biologist

"If accidents are the major cause of death of young people it's hard to see the selection pressure - unless there is a gene for not stepping in front of a bus,"

Accidents are definitely a selection pressure when they are avoidable, but society tries to sidestep that too.

Surely there are genes that dictate your natural level of situational awareness; in days gone by the vast majority of folk who frequently did something dumb like crossing the road without looking or cutting a branch while sitting on it would have removed themselves from the gene pool. Nowadays with our collective knowledge of medicine and physiotherapy, they survive and re-enter society, possibly to pass on genes that Nature alone would have gotten rid of.

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Should Nominet ban .uk domains that use paedo and crim-friendly words?

auburnman
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I'm starting to suspect

That media and state have come to an understanding: The media don't publish the atrocious shit they already know about MP's and various quangos that could bring down the entire government, and in return X absolutely batshit mental policies are launched every week specifically tweaked to be as outrageous as possible for the purpose of selling newspapers.

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Ofcom's head Ed may yet run the Beeb: UK gov 'mulls axing BBC Trust'

auburnman
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"Given that the BBC Trust has to represent both the poacher and the gamekeeper, it was in an impossible situation to begin with."

Hardly an impossible situation - dealing with conflicting interests must certainly be tricky but you can't say it can't be done. Fair enough the Trust have made an arse of it, but the solution is to come down on them like a ton of bricks and maybe punt some of them out, not junking the entire lot and overloading OfCom even further. Surely setting strategic direction for the beeb would be way out of their comfort zone.

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Peugeot 208 GTi: The original hot hatch makes a comeback

auburnman
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Re: postcode search

One the subject of postcodes, does anyone know roughly the area covered by the first part of a postcode in the UK? was trying to find this out the other day but my Google-fu failed me.

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Google submits YET ANOTHER offer to fix 'search dominance' in EU

auburnman
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Google should update their frontpage to randomly take X% of visitors to an options page asking: "Would you like to try one of our competitors search products? Yes please, show me the alternatives / No thanks, back to the Google home page"

That way they could reply to the commission that they actively tried to push competitor's products onto people, yet 99.5% of those asked chose to stick with Google (my guess at numbers.)

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Smartwatch craze is all just ONE OFF THE WRIST

auburnman
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Happy

007 watch!

I had one of those too. Good times, although it did get me a detention when I accidentally set off the 007 them in the middle of English class. The cheap metal on the back did turn my wrist green though. I remember my mum fixing it by painting the back with nail varnish - pink nail varnish. I also seem to recall 'losing' the watch shortly thereafter...

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Facebook postpones privacy putsch: report

auburnman
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Isn't this the second time (at least) they've aimed to use people's mugshots in adverts?

If you have to use Facebook, don't have a photo of your face as your profile photo.

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Kim Dotcom quits Mega to head new political party, fight extradition

auburnman
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Re: Not a NZ Citizen = not an MP

He can certainly do what is an option for any rich elite, bankroll his own sock-puppet.

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Microsoft's $7.1bn Nokia gobble: Why you should expect the unexpected

auburnman
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Re: The dancing dad of IT

I will admit Bing is quite good for video searches, it even plays previews on mouseover. Which can be more of a hindrance than a help if you accidentally leave the mouse in the wrong place and the audio of a, er, Party Political Broadcast starts blaring through the house...

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Beat the UK's incoming smut filter: Pre-censor your grumble flicks

auburnman
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Unhappy

Re: Wanking Dangerously

Now THAT is Evil.

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auburnman
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Re: More evil

Makes sense: Cameron for c**ts, Clegg for c**ks and Millband for t*ts. And Gordon Brown for Ar**holes.

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auburnman
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They should have left the sex scenes in but censored the offending areas with the floating heads of Cameron and Clegg. Then dub over the moaning with old Party Political Broadcasts.

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Microsoft buys Nokia's mobile business

auburnman
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Thoughts

-Elop is probably being returned to the fold so he can be speed groomed for Ballmer's chair over the next 12 months

-This is probably the best deal Nokia's shareholders can get based on Nokia's CURRENT situation (Chunk of cash, bailed out of the failing phone side and retaining other parts of the business)

-Google must be absolutely fuming (Software missteps aside, Nokia have always been regarded as the #1 phone hardware manufacturer, and with their shenanigans MS have picked them up for half the price Google paid for Motorola?)

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Top Twitter lawyer quits micro-blogging site ahead of IPO

auburnman
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Trollface

Re: "He said in a blog post"

The Twitter announcement would have been

"I’ll continue to support the company and its great people by staying on as an advisor for the legal, trust & safety, corporate development an"

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US gov preps sale of TOP SECRET disease research island

auburnman
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"the "swimming pool" slides open to reveal an underground launch pad."

Are you sure you're not thinking of Tracey Island?

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Foursquare gets pushy with fandroids, touchy Windows 8 bods

auburnman
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Stop

I thought Google had just changed the App T's & C's so that push notifications/adverts are now a big no-no? Someone's gonna have to pull a u-turn, and it ain't gonna be big G...

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'World's worst director' plans Snowden-inspired movie comedy

auburnman
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I think I'd rather contribute to a Kickstarter fund that paid Uwe Boll to retire and never go near a film again.

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Apple tops target list for litigious patent trolls

auburnman
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Re: karma?

That's the other reason Apple are more likely to settle than fight; they run a risk of their own legal team setting a precedent that could come back to bite them in the arse in cases against Samsung and the like if they ever decided to swat a few flies in court.

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Facebook scammers raking in $200 MEEELLION in illicit profits

auburnman
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I would hesitate to call them spammers or scammers - from the article I can't see what they are doing wrong. FaceBookers are following them of their own free will and marketers are paying them to post adverts. It probably violates Advertising guidelines or somesuch but if you can't tell when someone is selling you something you need to get off the internet.

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Punter strikes back at cold callers - by charging THEM to call HIM

auburnman
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Well played that man. As for informing callers about the billed rate, surely it can't be that hard to set up a prerecorded message when connection is made?

Personally we don't even have a telephone plugged in to the landline at mine, and with a little care over who I give my mobile number to I can't remember the last time I had a sales call. Obviously not a solution for everyone, but something more and more people are doing nowadays.

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Skype: 3D video calling is the FUTURE

auburnman
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My guess is they are trying to eventually develop facilities that allow 3D teleconferencing, what with Microsoft's usual relentless focus on businesses. More power to them if they can get it done, I just hope they don't manage to break the interface or shaft consumers in the process.

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iPad classes for DOGS offered in New York

auburnman
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Trollface

To be fair, if I could tongue my own genitalia, I probably wouldn't bother with a tablet either.

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BILLION DOLLAR BALLMER: Microsoft chief makes $1bn simply by quitting

auburnman
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Stephen Elop

Will need to seriously up the timetable for the destruction of Nokia if he wants to get the big MS chair in the next 12 months.

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US court: Dell can't hound debtor with robocalls to her mobile

auburnman
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Re: PAY UP!!!

We don't even know if the woman actually defaulted on her loan, we just know Dell say she owes them money. Could as easily be a paperwork ballsup knowing big organisations.

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Xbox One users will have to pay extra for Skype and gamer-gratifying DVR

auburnman
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Facepalm

Without explaining what they are/do, they might as well have announced it comes with Dilithium Crystals and no less than 32 nanospleens.

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So, you gonna foot this '$200bn' hacking bill, insurance giants asked

auburnman
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The insurance scheme...

... is probably a backdoor way of convincing companies to use airgaps and test and improve their security. I would presume the insurance companies will write in minimal standards of security protection to the agreements (much like mandating locked doors and burglar alarms). It's a sad state of affairs, but I bet security will be taken a lot more seriously when there is an insurance policy that could be invalidated.

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'Look, give us Snowden' - this Friday's top US-Russia talks revealed

auburnman
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Go

Re: Dear United States of America

Unwanted <> having no value. If I received a Bugatti Veyron tomorrow, it would be an unwanted gift. I could still definitely turn it to my advantage (Even second hand, I'm sure I could sell it and buy a pretty nice house with the proceeds.)

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auburnman
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Re: Dear United States of America

That's exactly why Russia won't give him up unless America somehow promises them the moon on a stick: a yank requesting asylum from Russia is a MASSIVE PR coup.

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Queensland bans IBM from future work

auburnman
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We desperately need to put in a similar style of "naughty step" proviso for government contractors here. Starting with contracts that have scaling penalties when a company blows the budget they were given for completing a project and ask for more. Too much lowballing of tenders only for the true cost to come out once everyone is heavily invested.

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Paid-for stuff likely to triumph over free – shock report

auburnman
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Re: Win?

There is no 'free' content, only free-to-the-viewer content which is paid for by ads. If paid for content with no ads gets enough of the eyeballs, ad-supported content could well hit a tipping point where either advertisers don't see the point of spending money on such a reduced viewer base or the station will try running adverts at a rate of 1 a minute or higher and drive away the remaining eyeballs. not that I'm sure this would happen, but I think it's a far from unlikely scenario. Almost all of the best TV already comes from the pay channels nowadays, we could well be at or past the tipping point already.

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Upgraded 3D printed rifle shoots 14 times before breaking

auburnman
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Re: whats the point?

"What matters is that the cat is out of the bag, if they can't make it work this week they will find a way to make it work next week."

My money is on someone eventually trying to make a horrifically dangerous shoulder mounted recoilless rifle style model.

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Police probe IDIOTIC Twitter bomb threats slung at journalists

auburnman
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"I wonder how hard it would be to set up a service for people who don't want to be anon online."

Ask Mark Zuckerberg.

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Hackers crack femtocells to pwn then clone phones

auburnman
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Joke

Re: HDMI?

Don't you know them no good dangerous criminals can hack your brain through that thar teevee nowadays?!

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Murdoch machinations mean Microsoft must rename SkyDrive

auburnman
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Unhappy

I'm a little disappointed that Sky won the ruling. Companies that trademark names that already mean something should have to accept the consequences (namely a lesser degree of protection from similar forms to the trademark). I seem to recall the Rosetta Stone company having a spat with Google a while back over naming confusion as well.

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Wii U sales plunge: Nintendo hopes Mario and Zelda will shift some kit

auburnman
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Re: What about moving into mobile games?

I was thinking something similar except they don't even have to give up on hardware altogether - just consoles. If they would port their superstar games to Xbox or Playstation and/or selected phones they could make a mint. They could still release kooky hardware on platforms not their own, having the Wii-style games without having to pay for making a console. I'm sure Microsoft or Sony would let them release games on XB/PS with specialist peripherals like a balance board or a Wiimote or a face recognising pasta strainer or whatever mental shit they want to try this time.

In fact that was the Achilles heel of the Wii in my opinion - it's Unique Selling Point was nothing that couldn't be easily copied by the big two simply by adding some peripherals. And lo and behold after Nintendo took the risk and proved there was a market for 'motion' games, that's exactly what happened - leaving the Wii an under powered machine that no longer did anything unique.

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Microsoft Surface sales numbers revealed as SHOCKINGLY HIDEOUS

auburnman
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Re: Where can I buy one?

Something similar (hiding the OS like it was a negative selling point) happened in the Vista era. I still remember helping a friend of my mum's pick out a basic XP PC that did everything she needed (Basically browsers, email and occasionally printing) at the store, and keeping schtum when the guys at the till brought out and started ringing up a slightly better specced machine for the same price. It wasn't until we'd got home and fired it up that Karma struck and I realised I'd taken a Vista machine.

(Cue much wasted time looking for drivers that don't exist yet, followed by 'downgrading' the machine to XP like I should have done in the first place.)

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auburnman
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Re: amounted to "just' $853m

When you compare it to the amounts spent or squandered to get that $853M, yes.

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Kevin Bacon avoids slapped wrist after TV pipe-fatness claims

auburnman
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As a slight aside...

...are the Hollywood elite strapped for cash at the minute? I can't turn on the telly without Kevin Bacon, Jennifer Aniston, Bruce Willis or Al Pacino burbling on at me about mobiles or internet.

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Microsoft to Google: Please remove us from internet

auburnman
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Unhappy

Aw...

For a second there I thought Microsoft.com in it's entirety was about todisappear from google results. That would have been very popcorn-worthy.

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Kids LIE about age on Facebook, gasps Brit ad watchdog

auburnman
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Re: Go ahead please... block social networks by default as well.

"THEY ARE NOT STOPPING YOU FROM LOOKING AT PORN."

BUT THEY WANT ME TO SIGN A REGISTER LIKE A FUCKING SEX OFFENDER.

FOR ENGAGING IN NORMAL ADULT BEHAVIOUR.

THAT IS THE ISSUE, GET IT THROUGH YOUR SKULL.

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Chromecast: You'll pop me in for HOT STREAMS of JOY, hopes Google

auburnman
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Still going the wrong way

Still waiting for a device that will sling whatever is on my TV at the time across the Wi-Fi to a tablet or phone. But I guess that doesn't help sell subscriptions to on-demand services...

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UK parliament presses for pardon for Alan Turing

auburnman
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Re: You've just made the point.

"If they're going to do it properly, then they ought to pardon *everyone* that was convicted of the same offence, going back to whenever it was made an offence."

While I agree with the spirit of that idea, is it really that cut and dried? That assumes everyone convicted of gross indecency was a persecuted homosexual. Surely flashers and other genuine criminals would have been prosecuted under the same indecency laws.

Personally I'd much rather politicians leave it alone than use it for cheap heat. And I don't think we should be 'tidying up' our history with pardons. Maybe it's better to have an example that reminds us that the law CAN be wrong.

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Curiosity team: Massive collision may have killed Red Planet

auburnman
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Go

Re: The Second Coming ...... and in Steganographic Code for Stealthy Colonisation of Invaded Forces

Mars is still here! I was worried when I didn't see any comments from him on the NSA articles; good to see the SMARTR AI Global Interdiction Quantum Drones didn't get him.

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