* Posts by James O'Shea

887 posts • joined 14 Jun 2007

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Landlines: The tech that just won't die

James O'Shea
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Cold calls?

I get cold calls all the time. Well, I used to. Not so much anymore, they no longer love me. Perhaps it has something to do with the way I'd answer them.

1 if i had some time to spare, I'd do my very best to keep them on the line for as long as I possibly could. Every second I spent talking to them was a second they weren't making money. I would drag the call out, and drag it out, and drag it out some more, until _they_ hung up on _me_. After a while, those twits would stop calling.

2 if I _didn't_ have time to spare, I'd use the air horn I kept near the phone. There's nothing like a nice high-decibel blast straight into the earpiece to get your point across. For some reason, those twits would stop calling after a few times, too.

A very nice young man cold-called me on Friday. Apparently I'd requested that he call when I registered at one of his company's 'affiliate websites'. By the time he finally hung up, I'd got a nice list of websites to never go near again, and his sales average for the day was shot. Poor boy. I'll bet that his supervisor isn't going to be happy with him after reviewing the recording of _that_ call. How sad. Too bad.

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Is it humanly possible to watch Gigli and Battlefield Earth back-to-back?

James O'Shea
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Re: Mine...

There was a Starship Troopers 2? Jesus Christ. And I thought that Starship Stormtroopers was bad enough, they made a _sequel_? <checks IMDB> No, they made _three_ sequels, and there's another one due this year. Bloody hell.

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James O'Shea
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Re: Two on the list are the worst.. one, maybe not.

Feh. Neither Barbarella nor Galexina were on the 'worst' list, which shows that it couldn't possibly be a list of the real worst films ever.

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Google: What this planet needs is INTERNET FROM SPAAACE

James O'Shea
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Does anyone else

think that that pic looks kind of like 'Q' from Star Trek TNG?

(Note: one of the reasons why I watched DS9 was that a certain captain was NOT Picard.)

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Latest menace to internet economy: Gators EATING all the PUSSIES

James O'Shea
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Coat

Payback

for all the lizards and small grass snakes that evil animal tortured to death over its lifetime. I say that we vote a special award to the python, and to the gator, for riding the world of some dangerous predators. And turn 'em loose to continue the good work.

Snakes of Bristol, crawl to glory,

Victory is hov'ring o'er ye,

Bright-eyed freedom stands before ye,

Hear ye not her call?

At your sloth she seems to wonder;

Rend the sluggish bonds asunder,

Let the war-cry's deaf'ning thunder

Every cat appall.

Echoes loudly waking,

Hill and valley shaking;

'Till the sound spreads wide around,

The cat's courage breaking;

Your foes on every side assailing,

Forward press with heart unfailing,

'Till felines learn with quailing,

Reptilians ne'er can yield!

I'll get me coat, it's the Tortoiseshell one over there.

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Pull up the Windows 10 duvet and pretend Win8 and Vista were BAD DREAMS

James O'Shea
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Re: "..stopped retailers and PC makers from selling .."

If, indeed, Microsoft has stopped retailers and PC makers from selling machines with Win 7, someone should tell Dell. http://www.dell.com/us/business/p/desktops-n-workstations?~ck=mn#!facets=80770~0~16063830&p=1. And HP. http://store.hp.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/us/en/mlp/desktops/windows-7. And Tiger Direct. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/Category/guidedSearch.asp?CatId=6&sel=Detail%3B163_1173_37563_37563&cm_re=Desktops-_-Spot%2004-_-Business. And probably others.

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Go Canada: Now ILLEGAL to auto-update software without 'consent'

James O'Shea
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hmmm...

OK... now _enforce_ this. Especially enforce it on websites, etc., which are NOT in Canadian jurisdiction, which would be almost all of them.

The problem with this kind of legislation is that the guys who are using drive-by installs to dump malware on people's machines are _already_ criminals, and simply will not care about adding yet another charge to the sheet, given that they are very unlikely to be caught.

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No, the Linux leap second bug WON'T crash the web

James O'Shea
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Re: Time lords in Paris

"She's bigger on the inside than the outside?"

Well, she _is_ a TARDIS. Or at least a Tard.

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Ford recalls SUVs … to fix the UI

James O'Shea
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I see that Ford hasn't improved

My father used to drive Fords, and nothing but Fords. Angilas, Cortinas, etc, right up until he bought an Australian Ford Falcon. That cured him.

And this abomination gives entirely new meaning to Found On Road Dead, given the way that the airbags wouldn't deploy after hitting the wrong button.

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Elite:Dangerous goes TITSUP

James O'Shea
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"Number of people requesting refunds = 100s

Number of people playing and, for most part, enjoying the game = 100,000+"

If those numbers are anywhere nearly correct, then WHY ON GOD'S GREEN EARTH DON'T THE DEVS REFUND THE MONEY TO THOSE WHO REQUEST IT? Seriously, if the number requesting a refund is, as implied, at the 0.1% level, then why not just hand 'em back their money and make the problem go away? It's what, 30-50 pounds each? Why not just kick back the money and restore peace to your network?

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James O'Shea
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Re: There is single player

As I understand it, a lot of the screaming is due not just to there not being an offline mode, but that, apparently, it was understood by a large fraction of those who stumped up cash that there would be an offline mode. And there isn't. And the devs aren't giving back the cash. I could be wrong, but it appears to this disinterested bystander that if the devs had simply made it clear from the beginning, or at least from early on, that there wasn't going to be an offline mode, or if they would refund the cash, the problem would evaporate. If the devs had said that it's unlikely that there would be an offline mode, and people stumped up anyway, then the punters couldn't complain if there wasn't an offline mode. (Well, they could complain, but I'd not pay any attention.) If, however, the punters got the impression that there would be an offline mode, and if some of them kicked in cash precisely because they had that impression, then they really should get a refund now that there isn't and never will be an offline mode. And single player mode does not appear to be offline. YMMV

As for the apparent fact that the basic ship isn't good enough to play a meaningful online game... perhaps the devs should crank up the minimums for the basic ship so that it _is_ good enough. Hmm. I further understand that in-app purchases are required to improve a basic ship. Hmm. (If I'm incorrect about this, please correct me.)

No, I've never played the game. And, given the way that the devs have treated some of their supporters, I doubt that I ever will. Well-reasoned replies as to why I should change my mind are invited. Flames and downvotes will be ignored.

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Renault Captur: Nobody who knows about cars will buy this

James O'Shea
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Re: An ideal car for the French market

"There are things still made in France?"

Frenchmen. Alas.

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DON'T PANIC! Latest Anonymous data dump looks old hat

James O'Shea
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Re: Couldn't help

So.... are you gay, did you have a small accident, or are you simply not a guy?

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Buses? PAH. Begone with your filthy peasant-wagons

James O'Shea
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Re: Check your facts.

Not _all_ local bus services. I can think of one local bus system which was most emphatically NOT subsidised: the bus 'service' in Kingston, St. Andrew, and St. Catherine, Jamaica between about 1987 and 2001. Until the early 1980s it was a nice, normal, subsidised, bus system, the Jamaica Omnibus Service, JOS, a.k.a. Jolly Joseph. Jolly Joseph was executed by (socialist!) politicians so that the, ahem, 'small man' could make a cut out of the 'vast profits' of the bus business (and so that the Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation, the KSAC, could stop losing money at a truly remarkable rate). The 'small man' was invited to purchase a franchise and run their own buses on the routes; low passenger-level routes such as the 67 (Cross Roads to Hope Gardens) didn't have anyone applying for the route, and so had no buses anymore. (Jolly Joseph went everywhere, even if at times there were one or two passengers on a bus designed for 70+; that was one reason why it lost money.) The 75 route (Papine to Duhaney Park), now that had _lots_ of franchises. Every one of them with two to six buses which were designed to hold 30-40 passengers. The 'small man' (not very small if he could afford a half dozen Isuzu buses, called 'Quarter Millions' because they cost Ja$250,000 at the time, before the Jamaican dollar crashed to its current level) quickly discovered that the only way he was going to make money was to pack 'em in as much as possible, which meant 60-70 passengers. (Yes. 70 passengers in a space meant for 30. Tokyo at rush hour ain't got nothin' on Kingston... How'd they fit? They didn't. Passengers would be hanging out of the windows and doors...) The local newspapers ran articles showing how there was actually more space on slave ships in the Middle Passage than on a Number 75 on Hope Road, and that the passengers were expected to pay for the privilege. (A quick trip to the Jamaica Gleaner's or the Jamaica Observer's sites should be quite revealing. Search for 'bus' and 'middle passage'. Be prepared to see a _lot_ of articles, somewhat fewer at the Observer 'cause the Observer didn't exist until around 1994 while the Gleaner goes back to 1838.) Because schoolchildren paid a special, reduced, fare, the bus crews tried their best to not carry any schoolchildren. This policy resulted in a lot of screaming and shouting, and policemen deployed to major bus routes to ensure that the 'schoolers' got packed in with the adults. (I'm serious. The only way to get the children on the bus was to arrest a few of the bus crews.) Jolly Joseph had a schedule, and usually kept fairly close to it. The franchises didn't move until the bus was full, and by full I mean until there were 60-70 fare-payers aboard. Plus a crew of three or four (a driver, a conductor, and one or two packers).

A look here http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20081123/ent/ent10.html might be revealing. And also http://www.onlyinnajamaica.com/video/2010/03/16/two-white-girls-pon-a-minibus/ which shows a packer in action, packing the bus ('Two White Girls' is hilarious... unless you actually had to ride the damn buses. Then it's not so funny.)

The franchise system has since been abolished and Jolly resurrected, complete with subsidy. http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20000917/cleisure/cleisure1.html

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You have a 'SIMPLE QUESTION'? Well, the answer is NO

James O'Shea
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Re: I like to think

There were lots of spies. And a lot of Spanish 'volunteers' went to the Eastern Front (and to such vacation spots as Leningrad) as the Blue Division; once it became clear to Franco that the Axis couldn't possibly win (late 1943, showing that he was a lot brighter than the Germans) he ordered 'em back, repeating the order in March 1944 for the hard of hearing. Some wouldn't leave, and became the Blue Legion; a few of them were incorporated into SS Divisions Nordland and Wallonien, and fought alongside the French SS volunteers ('Charlemagne') in Berlin in late April and early May 1945. Nordland and Charlemagne held the area around the Reich chancellory on 1 and 2 May, 1945, and fought hard for the express purpose of denying the Soviets a propaganda victory when the Soviets tried to take the position in time for May Day. (1 May, for the non-bolshie among you. those who don't know the significance of the day are invited to look it up.)

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James O'Shea
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Re: I like to think

"There was this little incident where the Germans practiced bombing a small Basque town named Guernica? Maybe you've heard of it?"

Yep. I also heard that that particular incident occurred during the Spanish Civil War, which ended 1 April 1939, or roughly five months before WWII began (1 Sept 1939 according to most histories; perhaps yours is different.). The bombing of Guernica itself took place 26 April 1937, or better than two years prior to the beginning of the Second World War.

it is true that there was considerable fighting in China starting in about 1937 and which continued to 1945. It is also true that the Italians went into Ethiopia in 1935. Those incidents, and the Spanish Civil War, and assorted other actions, (Red vs White in Russia, 1918-192whatever, Soviet vs Finland, assorted internal actions in Italy, Germany, Russia/Soviet Union, France, Britain, the US...) are not considered to be part of the Second World War, though they may have led to it or merged with it. (Hint: there's a _reason_ why Dug-Out Doug McArthur was sitting in the Philippines feeling sorry for himself in December 1941. And why the only VC every won by a member of the King's African Rifles was won in Ethiopia. And why the Italians in Ethiopia kept fighting until _after_ the rest of Italy gave up, including being the _only_ Italian force in the entire war to actually take and hold allied territory without Germans to hold their hands. See further 'KAR solider wins VC', above.)

Now, if you can produce a good reason for saying that the Second World War in Europe started prior to 26 April 1937 I'm willing to listen. But it's gonna have to be _damn_ good.

So far as can be determined, no actual fighting related to the general conflict in Europe/North Africa/the Med/the near east took place in Spain 1 Sept 1939 to 8 May 1945. Or even to 15 Aug 1945. Again, if you have something which would dispute or at least clarify this, by all means trot it out.

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James O'Shea
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Re: says:

'The old folk asking questions are not necessarily the ones to be wary of. It's the new accountant at work who asks things like, "You know how to use Excel. How do I add up a column of figures easily? Is there a formula you can show me?"'

That one's easily solved. Tell them that it's a two-step operation:

1 select the column in question

2 press the 'DEL' for 'DELIBERATE' key. Excel will then deliberate a while and give you the answer. You may have to wait up to a half hour.

You then walk away, whistling "The Guns of Brixton".

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James O'Shea
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Re: Apple doesn't change connectors often. That is not the problem.

He's having 'Dr Dobbs' withdrawal pains.

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Apple's DIRTY SECRET isn't that secret, or that dirty

James O'Shea
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Prepare to be hammered

The Apple-haters and the Bolshies will descend upon thee, and smite thee with their scorn for actually pointing out facts.

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Google Tax part 94: EU's H-dot wavers over copyright levy

James O'Shea
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Re: Makes your head spin

"Tell me that this type of ridiculous action doesn't impact taxpayers...ha."

It won't affect _my_ taxes.

Yours, now...

Perhaps once it _does_ start to affect taxpayers, said taxpayers might DO SOMETHING about the berks.

Or not.

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TorrentLocker ransomware pestilence plagues Europe, bags $500k

James O'Shea
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I don't get it

I have received dozens of 'this is the invoice' or 'this is the payroll file' or 'we have a package for you' emails with what are supposed to be DOCXs or PDFs or ZIPs in them... and given that I _know_ that I didn't order anything from anyone with that name, or engage an outside payroll service, and I'm not expecting a package and besides USPS, UPS, and FedEx don't send out that kind of message, I simply dump such emails into the trash and delete them. Sophos screams bloody murder about them about 40% of the time, anyway (Sophos detects inbound malware pretty much all the time in the ZIPs, not so much in the DOcXs or PDFs) so why, why, WHY would anyone open any of those things? Now, as i have multiple email accounts and have seen the exact same come-on show up in two or three accounts within minutes of each other, it might be more obvious that there's a problem. But anyone with even a modicum of sense should know if they have an outside payroll service, and what the email address of that service is, so that they can just look at the damn inbound mail and SEE that it's not from their guys.

I don't get it. Even when I was a newbie (more years ago than I like to admit) I _never_ just clicked on stuff in mail, I _always_ had a look at the headers to see who sent it... And, yes, the first thing I do on a WinBox (and, now, on a Mac, as Apple has caught the 'hide extensions' disease, too) is to turn 'hide extensions' OFF so that i can see that little .EXE at the end. Or that .DOCM or whatever. Why is it that umpti-ump _THOUSAND_ people simply don't _look_ at whatever it is _before_ being a happy clicker? WHY?

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Hold the front page: Spain's anti-Google lobbyists lobby for Google News return

James O'Shea
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Re: Translation:

I was under the impression that there are other search engines. (Bing. Yahoo... but I repeat myself. Duck-duck-go. Alta Vista. Assorted others.)

I was also under the impression that the Spaniards are upset about Google News providing free advertising for Spanish news sites and want Google to pay to provide the free advertising for Spanish sites. Presumably this should also apply to Yahoo or some other site providing free advertising to Spanish sites, same as Google, and if so we're likely to see Yahoo and the others bail, too.

Personally, I rarely use Google News, or Yahoo news, or any such site. And the few times I do use those sites, I don't care if I can't find anything from Spain on them. If Google and Yahoo and company dropped every Spanish link tomorrow I would neither know nor care. I rather suspect that the Spanish news sites would, but that's their problem. They should have thought before they pulled their little extortion scheme.

The Spanish sites, and the Spanish government, could always just create their own search engine and see if they can get the public to use it...

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James O'Shea
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That would appear to be it.

I don't think they're going to get any.

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James O'Shea
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oops

One wonders exactly how the Spanish government could possibly go about forcing Google to stay and be taxed. One really does.

I've got out a bowl of popcorn. This should be quite entertaining.

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Assange's WikiLeaks: Give generously this Xmas – for STATUE of our DEAR LEADER

James O'Shea
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Re: My Lord, I have a cunning plan

I think that you'll find that the Nigerians already tried the big packing case thing. Didn't work.

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James O'Shea
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Nah. They make a hollow _larger-than-life-sized_ Assange(tm) statue, roll it in for him to view, he jumps inside, and discovers that they neglected to make any air holes. And the ship carrying the statue to Australia for display has a bit of trouble in the Roaring Forties and the statue accidentally slips over the side in 2000 metres of water.

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Égalité, Fraternité - Oui, peut-etre. Liberté? NON, French speedcam Facebookers told

James O'Shea
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Re: Win Win

Nah, I live in Florida. Plenty of French-speaking madmen driving around here, mostly Quebecois snowbirds. And we have Cuban Cowboys and their sisters, Las Latinas Brava. There are _lots_ of low-flying idiots, though I'll admit that the Quebecois manage to scare even Las Latinas Brava, something not even a state trooper flashing blue lights in the rearview can to do.

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James O'Shea
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Send it to me. I'm on the far side of the Atlantic from France, and haven't driven in France for over a decade. They literally can't do a damn thing to me.

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Furious GTA V gamers seek similar ban on violent, misogynistic title: the Holy Bible

James O'Shea
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"The protestants don't own a whole country. They are tempered by their fellow citizens. But more than enough times they have pushed for unholy havoc to be wrought on their religious rivals."

Errm... Yes, the Prods _do_ own a whole country. Several, actually. With names like 'England', 'Norway', 'Sweden', 'the Netherlands', a whole bunch of others... Hint: HM Queen Lizzy is head of the Church of England. And there's actually currently enforced laws on the books in Britain which would make life rather interesting for any heir to the throne who actually dared to marry a Catholic.

You may be thinking of 'fundamentalists', not Protestants. And even there, well, things have cooled down over the last few centuries, but the CoE, the Lutherans, and the Calvinists were all pretty damn fundie in the past. Y'all might want to review your history. Or at least to have a look at some poetry from as late as the 19th century. http://www.poetrycat.com/alfred-tennyson/the-revenge

What, you thought that Muslims and fundie Xians had a monopoly on religious fervour? Read up on the life of, oh, Francis Drake.

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Wheels fall off bid to sue Apple over iTunes anti-piracy shenanigans

James O'Shea
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"How the hell would Apple know?"

If you go to sites like this one http://www.chipmunk.nl/klantenservice/applemodel.html you can enter your serial number and get back the basic info, including where and when it was manufactured. Apple _knows_ exactly when their kit was made, and exactly where. This means, for example, that they _know_ when the warranty expires on Device X. There are numerous sites around the internet which will tell Joe User and and all of that info, too. Apple doesn't make a secret of it. You could call Apple and ask them to tell you how to decode the serial number yourself, and they'll tell you. At least they told me. I assume that this is how the people behind the various sites figured out how to decrypt the serial number.

Apple has been doing this kind of thing for at least twenty years, probably as much as 30 years, possibly longer still. It's not a secret. I suspect that most other major vendors do something of the kind. I _know_ that Dell and HP do something similar, for sure. Yes, they _know_ when someone's telling porkies about how long they've had that device, as they _know_ when it shipped. And, if they get sales data back (which they should) they'll _know_ when it sold.

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James O'Shea
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Re: Only lawyers benefit from delay like this

They'll need to find plaintiffs who

1 bought an iPod during the period in question

2 got music from Real Networks and attempted to put it on their iPods

3 didn't de-DRM their RN music once they realised that there was a problem

4 still give a damn.

Just owning an iPod isn't enough. They'd have to show that they were 'injured'. And that means that they have to show that they also got RN music _and tried to use it on their iPods_. Proving that at this late date may be a tad difficult. It was possible to de-DRM RN music; those who seriously wanted to, could, and did. They would probably keep their mouths shut now, 'cause they'd be telling the world that they breached the DMCA if they spoke up. This means that the real hard core RN users will be absent. And, finally, given the passage of time... most users simply don't care anymore.

And, oh, yeah, given the current shenanigans, I'd say that the court will have a Very Close Look(tm) at any new plaintiffs. if, say, someone de-DRMed his RN music and still tried to claim 'injury', and the court finds out (and Apple will do their best to see that the court finds out) there might be Unexpected Results(tm). (How might Apple know? If the users were silly enough to use iTunes Match, for example, Apple would have a _very_ good idea as to what's in that music collection, when it got there, and where it came from. I use iTunes Match, but I really couldn't care less if Apple knows that I like Tina Turner songs. If a plaintiff claimed that he attempted to put RN music on his iPod but iTunes Match says that the track in question was first on the user's system in 2012, or that it was placed there during the time in question as a 256k MP3 which was generated by [insert name of popular ripping software here], someone will have to do a little explaining.)

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Crack open more champagne, Satya, XP's snowballing to HELL

James O'Shea
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Re: And?

it still works.

Assuming, that is, that it can accurately be said that any machine running XP is actually 'working'. The jury's still out on that.

And I'm not too sure about how well Mint 'works' on old XP hardware, either. On the other hand, Mint may very well work quite well on a G4. I have two ancient eMacs, fitted with G4s, which haven't been booted in about two years. Anyone who wants to try to put Mint on 'em is invited to come and haul 'em away, right now they're paperweights. (Literally.)

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James O'Shea
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Re: Meaningless statement by useless stats mangler - film at 11

I just downvoted you.

1 I don't own a Surface

2 i don't own a WinPhone (and haven't owned one since I got rid of my old Samsung Omni WinPhone 6 junkpile. and never will buy a WinPhone ever again, thanks to that thing.)

3 I am not particularly fond of Mickeysoft.

4 there are other reasons why you might get downvotes. Perhaps you can think of a few, if you try.

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James O'Shea
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Re: W7 is the winner

" the balls of Rocco Siffredi"

Does that make their customer base, ah, Kelly Stafford?

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Fort Lauderdale websites DDoSed after Anonymous threats over feeding ban

James O'Shea
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It's not just Ft Lauderdale

There's a church (yes, a gen-u-wine, all-the-way, full-blown, Baptist church) in West Palm Beach which insists on actually caring for the homeless by among other things, giving them a place to sleep. WPB city officials have been bombarding the church with fines and other assorted crap for _years_ to try to get them to stop, you know, Doing God's Work(tm). Last I heard the church was going to lose their land (and, therefore, the actual church building, and, more importantly, the place where the homeless guys could sleep) because they had refused to pay the fines. The city backed down, temporarily, after a wave of bad publicity.

The main reason for both FL and WPB's ire appears to be that a large proportion of the homeless are black. This is, after all, _South_ Florida. Have a look at the Florida state flag. Compare to the battle ensign of a certain military force which roamed Virginia, Maryland, and as far north as Pennsylvania about 150 years ago.

<exit, stage left, to the tune of 'Marching Through Georgia'.'>

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Bloke, 36, in the cooler for leaking ex's topless pics on Facebook

James O'Shea
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Re: Good, good

"How do we know the photo subject wasn't the one getting revenge by privately agreeing to the photo upload and then denying it afterwards?"

In this particular case, m'man used a fake ID which was traced back to him. Furthermore, m'man had been the subject of a restraining order since 2011. IOW, he's been at this for _years_ and he tried to cover his tracks.

He should have got a whole lot more time in the pokey. And some monetary damages, the better to make him pay attention. 'No' means 'no. 'Go away' means 'go away'. There's lots more girls,laddie, go find another one, preferably one who _doesn't_ hate your guts.

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Ten Mac freeware apps for your new Apple baby

James O'Shea
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Re: MSPaint equivalent?

You might also have a look at Graphic Converter.http://www.lemkesoft.de/en/products/graphicconverter/ It's primarily aimed at, well, converting graphic files from one format to another (duh...) but it is also quite a capable little mini-Photoshop. And if there's a graphic format it doesn't handle, wait a bit and Mr. Lemke will add it. I've used it for nearly 20 years now. It's beautiful, it actually does some things faster than Photoshop. And it's both try-before-you-buy shareware (remember that?) and cheap; when I first got it, it was $15-20 or so (it's been 20 years, I can't remember exactly) with an upgrade fee of around $10. The price has inched up to $40, $25 for upgrades. You only pay for _major_ upgrades, so I've shelled out the upgrade fee maybe three-four times. That means that I've paid less than two months worth of Creative Cloud (for which I will never, ever, pay, my copy of Creative Suite 5.5 still works and I have an older system carefully preserved to ensure that it I will have a machine to run it on for years to come) for 20 years of service. And Mr. Lemke provides excellent customer service, something I can't say about Adobe. I'm _happy_ to pay him so that he can keep his products available.

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James O'Shea
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Re: libreoffice

It's not quite that bad. You can round-trip documents which use only basic (and I mean _basic_) features. Use any features more advanced than, say, borders, and you're begging for trouble. Worse, LibreOffice (andOpenOffice) don't handle fonts the way MS Office does (or, in fact, the way the other free suite does). This means that if you have a long document there _will_ be differences in layout. It doesn't matter if you're just reviewing it, but if you're printing... oy, vey.

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Azure has put new life into Active Directory

James O'Shea
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so what you're saying is that Ye Olde Microsoft, the one which took three tries to get it right but when they got it right they really got it right, is back? Hmm. i may actually have a look at this one, then.

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Hacker dodges FOUR HUNDRED YEARS in cooler for SCANNING sites

James O'Shea
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Re: why ....

There are those who do exactly that.

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James O'Shea
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Re: Too subtle for me.

Here in deepest South Florida, should a homeowner discover someone at their door trying to get in illegally, said homeowner can, and has on multiple occasions in the past, shoot the miscreant dead, with no consequences beyond having to hire a cleaning service to get rid of the blood once the cops have been around and congratulated him on his aim.

Breaking and entering is liable to have harsh consequences. M'man tried, hard, to break into and enter a county site. You may disagree with the penalties, but you're not the prosecutor.

And, oh, please note that the 440 years is merely totaling the maximum possible sentences. In the first place, no matter what the prosecutor may or may not ask for, the judge might or might not hand down the maximum... and usually doesn't. In the second, most judges make the terms concurrent, so even if m'man got the max for each of the 44 he'd only be inside for the max, or 10. In the third, this is a non-violent first offence, so odds are that he'd just get probation. As the charges have been reduced to misdemeanors, that's a max of 366 days. (That's DAYS, not YEARS.) He'll probably get 'community service' (picking up the trash on the interstate for a few months) and a year of probation. A.k.a. a slap on the wrist.

On the other hand, it's a Federal case in Texas. which means that the judges and prosecutors are insane. back in the 1970s, when 'life' meant '60 years, with a chance at parole in 30' some Federal judges in Texas started handing out 99 year sentences instead of life. When defence attorneys objected, one judge went to 999 year sentences instead. The Mafia boys he was permanently parking into a supermax got some of their friends outside to blow him up (they put a bomb into his car) and his brother, also a Federal judge, requested transfer to Texas and continued the family tradition of 999 year sentences. Feds in Texas still trend towards packing in the years. If m'man had got the wrong judge, he really could have got 440 years in a supermax.

And, oh, yeah, he's not out of the woods yet. If the locals decide that the Feds were too soft, they could find a reason to charge him for something not covered by the Federal charges and haul him up to state courts. Timmy McVeigh was notoriously sentenced to death by the Feds for blowing up the Federal Building in Oklahoma City, and Oklahoma insisted on trying him separately and handing down their own death sentence just in case he survived the Feds. (He didn't.)

It's a whole new world on this side of the Atlantic. Especially in Texas.

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Whistling Google: PLEASE! Brussels can only hurt Europe, not us

James O'Shea
Bronze badge

Re: As long as Google de-facto controls "access" to the Internet...

I run Adblocker, Ghostery, NoScript, and Click2Flash. I'm pretty sure that between them they ID and block all scripts from _anyone_ unless I allow said scripts to run.

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James O'Shea
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Re: As long as Google de-facto controls "access" to the Internet...

Errm... Google does NOT have a monopoly over search. For example, I have Duck Duck Go set as my default search engine on every single device I own, from my cell phones to my desktops. The _only_ Google service I use is gmail... and I use that for throw-away accounts, and never, ever, use the web interface after I've set the account up for IMAP. This means that I never see any googleads. And, as I only use it for throwaways, the info that Google gets from those accounts is both limited and highly misleading.

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'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described

James O'Shea
Bronze badge

Re: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Ireland

"Who could be their common enemy? My money is on Lichtenstein"

Nah. It's the UK. The UK has a long, long, LONG history of operating against all of them. (Yes, including Mexico; look up 'Zimmerman Telegram'.)

My only question is 'How come Germany, France, China, and Japan aren't on the list?'

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Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers

James O'Shea
Bronze badge

Re: I seem to remember

"If you can heat your home with 300W you're either living in a shoebox or in the tropics. Or it's BS, of course."

My money's on BS.

Let's do some math.

1 Solar constant (the average power density delivered by the Sun at 1 AU): approx 1360 watts per square meter. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_constant This is the power delivered _outside_ the atmosphere. A lot of that doesn't make it through 100 km of air. A lot of it is in forms which can't easily be converted into electricity. For purposes of argument, let's assume that 100% of that power gets through and 100% can be converted. This makes for an upper limit for solar powered whatever, photovoltaics, mirror-fed steam, whatever.

2 let me consider just the room I'm sitting in now. I have flourescent lamps in the ceiling, totaling 100 watts. (It's a big room.) I have three desktop computers, each with 650 W power supplies, and each with a monitor eating around 100-150 W. (I looked at the little sticker on the back and did P=IV.) I have a server which googles another 700 W. (No monitor, I remote into that machine.) Without adding in the assorted external hard drives, routers, switches, the two printers, or the share the room has of the power used by the central air (I'm in _Florida_. It gets hot, even in November. Though right now it's around 75 F outside.) that adds up to (650x3 + 120x3 + 100 + 700) or 3110 watts. That's around 2.3 square meters, _just for this room_. Then I need to double that, to have power to feed batteries (which are, of course, 100% efficient) so I can have light at night. That's 4.6 square meters. Then add an additional 50% to cover more batteries for cloudy days (yes, even in Florida there are cloudy days, though the Palm Beach County Tourist Board would probably hate me for pointing this out. Indeed, today _is_ a cloudy day; that's one reason why we're down to a mere 75 F. We're supposed to have thunderstorms later, and to have thunderstorms off and on until Wednesday next week. We'd better have enough battery power, and enough square meterage of PVs or whatever to feed the batteries, to hold on until next Wednesday while getting only limited inputs on a daily basis... (God help you boyz in London....)

3 now let's consider something a bit more realistic. At best somewhere between 300 and 500 watts per square meter gets through and is usable. Call it 500. At best PVs have 10-20% efficiency and the boys at PG&E once got 22% out of their mirror-fed steam unit. (Which was in the Mojave desert...) Westinghouse and TRW once got close to that from their solar heat engine off the coast of Hawaii. Hmmm. 22% of 500 is... 110 watts per square meter. How many square meters do I need just to power this room? Hmm. 28 square meters. And to have power at night, 56. And to cover for clouds, 84.

Eighty Four Square Meters. It can be done. it just won't be easy or cheap. So now we account for the rest of the building... If efficiencies go up, that figure comes down. if the range of the Sun's output which can be used goes up, that figure comes down. Don't count on either happening anytime soon.

We could, I suppose, turn off our machines to save power. Except that then there'd be no bloody reason for us to employ people in here. It'd certainly save power if I turfed all the guys (and gals) out and let 'em starve in the dark.

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You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES

James O'Shea
Bronze badge

well, that's a relief

If they knew where the DCs were, some twit politician would insist on micromanaging 'em. and would actually be able to check up to see that his idiotic orders were being followed. If they don't know where they are, they have no clue as to what's really going on there, which is A Good Thing(tm).

Hmmm. How can I get a contract to set up some nice DCs for HMGov?

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Fake antivirus scams: It's a $120m business – and alleged ringleaders have just been frozen

James O'Shea
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Re: I know them

See? Government money was involved. It's been Corruption County for a _long_ time.

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James O'Shea
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I know them

They're just down the way from me, in Boca Raton and Delray Beach. The Palm Beach Post had a quite amusing (if you're not employed there) story last week and a followup on Monday.

http://www.mypalmbeachpost.com/news/news/crime-law/ftc-police-raid-local-computer-tech-support-compan/nh6yC/#__federated=1

http://www.mypalmbeachpost.com/news/business/how-feds-say-delray-beach-firm-tricked-customers/nh8w7/

Some of the good ol' boyz were located in the T-rex complex at Congress and Yamato. (Yes, there's a major road in Palm Beach County, Florida, named for a Japanese battleship and/or 'the spiritual and cultural virtues of the Japanese people'. Long story. Money was involved. This _is_ Corruption County, Florida, after all.) T-rex used to be where IBM Boca Raton built IBM PCs/XTs/ATs/etc. Gotta love it.

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Quebec's latest bid to break away from Canada HALTED by a single dot

James O'Shea
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Send 'em all back to France

Not even Frenchmen deserve to be stuck with Quebecois, but Quebecois definitely deserve to be stuck with Frenchmen.

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Most convincing PHISHING pages hoodwink nearly half of you – Google

James O'Shea
Bronze badge

Re: Hardly surprising

My bank sends emails which _always_ contain:

my name (my correct name, not the version I hand out to places not needing to actually know this)

the last four of my account number

a note suggesting that I log in to their site normally, and that I never, ever, click on a link in any email supposedly coming from them, as such an email would not be one of theirs.

I have got email allegedly from them which did not contain the above three items. In every case a look at the headers suggests that the email actually originated in Russia, Germany, Hong Kong, and, once, Brazil. The Brazilian one was memorable because it actually did have my correct name... but not the last four or the 'don't click' warning. it looked really good, too. I was tempted to go and see how closely they'd copied the bank's site, but settled for just forwarding it to my bank's anti-fraud people.

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