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* Posts by Kevin McMurtrie

673 posts • joined 15 Jun 2007

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US may disable all in-car mobile phones

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Still can't drive

This is pure stupidity. Lawmakers are attempting to forbid all the things that might cause dangerous driving rather than enforcing existing laws related to safe driving. In my tiny 1.7 mile bike ride to work, I'll see about 5 cars drift from their lane, 8 cars illegally turn right across a bike lane, 5 cars speeding, 2 slow cars impeding traffic, and one car and 3 bicycles run red lights. I don't believe they're all on the phone.

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AMD chip chief: 'one day, microprocessor skyscrapers'

Kevin McMurtrie
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Graphene

Wasn't it mentioned that graphene, which possesses incredible strength and heat conductivity, was successfully made to perform as an amplifier?

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Google alerts users to Facebook contacts 'trap'

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

Paper trap

I hate how when I print a web page on paper, it doesn't import back into the computer properly.

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'Hippy' energy kingpin's electric Noddy-car in epic FAIL

Kevin McMurtrie
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Coat

This car makes me wet

Many single family US homes have a 6 KW outlet in the garage for an electric clothes dryer. Pick which device is more important.

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Gigabit WLAN tech to shoulder Wireless DisplayPort

Kevin McMurtrie
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Troll

Only 60GHz

There's another wireless image technology that takes advantage of higher frequencies and higher throughput using two dimensional antenna arrays. The drawbacks are similar to 60GHz in that the signal degrades with distance and is easily blocked by obstacles. These systems are sometimes referred to as "video projectors."

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Mac market share slips worldwide

Kevin McMurtrie
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Troll

14340 PRINT "Other "; O

The 0.19% for "Other" operating systems would include the antique that is rendering those pie charts?

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App Store II: Steve Jobs sucks Mac's soul

Kevin McMurtrie
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Grenade

iHang

iTunes frequently hangs and consumes large amounts of CPU time with large music libraries because its use of multithreading is obsolete by about 20 years. It should be withdrawn from the online store.

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Google's 'copied Java code' disowned by Apache

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

"Cracked open" source

Field names are exactly preserved but temporary variables have names matching their data type. The redundant initial value of 'isImmutable' is gone. That's clearly decompiled code.

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US to fork $5bn+ into exascale supers

Kevin McMurtrie
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Black Helicopters

ATDT5551234

5 billion dollars for a computer that will depreciate at something like 40% a year?! How about rolling out 4 bilion dollars worth of 1Gbps fiber optic cables to US homes so we stop free-falling down the broadband rankings? The contract for getting the link could be that you must buy a fast computer and let the government process tasks on it for 10 hours a day. The other 1 billion dollars should be enough to build a core computer to coordinate tasks.

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Duracell MyGrid cable-free gadget charger

Kevin McMurtrie
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Troll

And pigs fry

Are those bare electrified metal strips on the surface? The important question now is AC or DC. AC could do a nice job of heating a piece of cured ham but DC would make a big rusty mess. The review needs to be updated, as being able to heat salty slabs of meat could possibly make the device useful.

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Obama consults Steve Jobs on making America great again

Kevin McMurtrie
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Coat

Turtleneck

And one more thing... Today I present a strategy that's like nothing you've ever seen before. The Political Reality Distortion Field. We've worked hard at this and it's absolutely beautiful. Stock markets will soar. The poor will be fed. Terrorists will lay down their arms when they see this sleek system. It's really amazing and it's ready today.

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Apple threatens Java with death on the Mac

Kevin McMurtrie
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Jobs Horns

Screw developers

I've seen MacOS become popular in corporate environments because it is an excellent Java development system. It elegantly bridges the gap between the corporate Microsoft world and the Solaris/Linux server world. I can think of several major companies that will be MacOS-free once Java is no longer maintained. That's a lot of software developers and IT staff losing interest in Apple systems.

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Jobs' Lion to marry Mac OS X and iOS

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

I'd be Lion if I said I was impressed

Mission Control and Launch Pad - that's the demo for a major revision?!? Will QuickTime X be extended? Will the iTunes threading bugs be fixed? Will very large amounts of hard disk and RAM be used more efficiently? Will SSD replace spinning swap? Will there every be API support outside Objective-C?

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Ruskie gang hijacks Microsoft network to push penis pills

Kevin McMurtrie
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Gates Horns

I almost guarantee...

Reporting this problem should be as simple as checking the ARIN record for that address, right?

abuse@msn.com, abuse@hotmail.com, abuse@microsoft.com

Auto-reply bots saying that your complaint was sent to the wrong address and discarded.

noc@microsoft.com

Carefully guarded by a filter that rejects anything that might mention any type of abuse going on.

Spam on!

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Danube sludge peril: Brown trouser time or not?

Kevin McMurtrie
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Green mud

Doesn't sodium hydroxide bond with carbon dioxide to make sodium carbonate? I'm waiting for somebody to put a green spin on this.

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Tesla says 40% of its Roadsters may catch fire

Kevin McMurtrie
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Flame

Carbon fire

I tossed an old 12V NiCd battery pack into a box for storage... that happened to have an unused sheet of carbon fiber in it. Even without epoxy to feed fire it wasn't what I'd call a minor issue. Carbon doesn't melt/burn until it's white hot and the fire throws off fragments of fibers that lead to more shorts elsewhere.

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Orange customers squeezed out of Facebook

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Ah, zillion to many NAT

The phone call must have gone something like this:

O: You're blocking us.

FB: You're hacking us. I'll send you the IP addresses of the hackers.

O: Everybody has those addresses!

FB: Sucks to be you.

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Is US prudishness ruining the internet?

Kevin McMurtrie
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Wear protection to prevent viral marketing

This comes down to US online services going for the maximum number of advertising eyeballs and maximum viral marketing. Just think of how many sites still have special IE 6 support to keep every single pair of visiting eyeballs. Allowing adult content would require a complete rework of marketing strategies and web site security, and probably in a complicated way that no dot-com wants to pay for. It might make content better but that's not the point. It's easier to ban adult content using overly simplified rules.

It's still very easy to host your own content so I'm not worried about freedom of speech. ...at least until net-neutrality goes away and the toll trolls say no to personal hosting.

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Bollywood 'recruits DDoS hired guns to fight movie pirates'

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

Floods of tens, even dozens, of requests

Since when does India have enough spare bandwidth to be running distributed attacks against distributed servers? Contracting illegal botnets would be a sure-fire way to get yourself and your service provider completely disconnected from the rest of the planet.

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Oz pedestrians fall to 'Death by iPod'

Kevin McMurtrie
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Unhappy

Thump

AT&T ads in the US are demonstrating how you can go about your day, including crossing streets, with your eyes never leaving the TV show on your cellphone. This is sad because people too stupid to keep themselves alive will be unavoidably killed by responsible people. No doubt legislation will be passed to equip vehicles with heavy, expensive, fuel-consuming hardware to keep brainless TV tumbleweeds safe.

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Monster Afghan spy airship to feature quad drinking straws

Kevin McMurtrie
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Giant coffee bean

Maybe Starbucks will pay for upkeep if it's painted brown with their logo on it.

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Doc develops RSI-reducing rolling mouse

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

800dpi?

What does 800dpi mean for a device that pivots like a joystick? How does it perform nonlinear motion if you can't pick it up like a mouse or reposition your finger like a trackpad? With 2560x1600 being the new standard resolution, I can't imagine pointing to things with linear tracking. It would be like trying to support a telescope with your hands.

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Ikea forecasts fluffy, fully teched kitchen of the future

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

Structural cohesion alert

Can this smart kitchen sense shelf weight, temperature, and humidity to accurately predict when broken particle board and dish fragments will be on my floor?

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Oracle hates discs, loves tape

Kevin McMurtrie
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Thumb Up

A/N FSQ-7

Spinning tapes are good, but don't forget clattering relays and blinking lights to complete the mysterious supercomputer look.

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Want to use WD diagnostics? Buy Windows

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Datacenters?

Don't insane numbers of consumer hard drives go into low-cost datacenter network storage racks? They're definitely NOT running Windows there and, even if they did, nobody can run a software tool on each of a few thousand hard drives to configure them.

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Google patents search that tracks your mouse moves

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

iFinger

Do Google phones support cursor hovering?

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Apple, Google, NASA, and the Rainbow connection

Kevin McMurtrie
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Shoehorn

Back in 2006, a plot of land measuring 5000 square feet in the middle of Silicon Valley's endless urban sprawl cost $400000 to $700000. High elevation land with a view of the valley and easy access to expressways, like that area of Cupertino, costs enough to make even the wealthiest wince. It's why the mansions look bubble-shaped and squished.

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US Army trials Iron Man super-trooper exoskeleton

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Whoops!

What happens if you slip while carrying 300lbs at chest level? Do your legs snap off at an odd angle? Does the weight crush your arms and ribs when you hit the ground? Maybe lifting the load high off the ground isn't such a good idea.

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Waterfall Niagara speakers

Kevin McMurtrie
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Dampening is there

I've thought about building speakers like these for my home even before I saw these pics. You'll see from the photos that there are large dampeners around the woofers, holes in the passive resonator, and there's room for more dampening under the passive. My cost estimates were far lower and I still couldn't justify it, not even when it's a speaker, a sculpture, and a hobby project all at once. I was also going to use polycarbonate because it won't crack.

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Miniature Apple display spotted in the wild

Kevin McMurtrie
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Thumb Up

Probably is a trackpad prototype

The long cables imply that it connects to something large like a laptop. Two complex cables implies two separate functions. There's a colored pattern on the screen that's too chunky for pixels but they could be light interference from touch sensing conductive films.

A visual trackpad sounds very cool but it would be useless without a new GUI paradigm. I doubt Apple wants so many GUIs at once - Mouse/Keyboard, Keyboard with gesture pad, Keyboard with visual gesture pad, iPhone/iPad, and iPod.

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Low-priced home digital media connections promised

Kevin McMurtrie
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Flame

Perfect for watching YouTube

Where is the need to send 21.6Gbps of video long distances? Not even in 10 years will there be a consumer device that can source that much REAL data. It makes more sense to send the video in its original storage format, which will remain 5 to 100Mbps for quite some time, and decompress to high bitrate pixels at the point of display.

100W over Cat 6 - It would take about 45V @ 1.2A on each of the four pairs to survive 100m. Fire icon, because thats what would happen if you had a coil of extra HDBaseT behind your TV.

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New surveillance-CSI method: Beverage hair-isotope trail

Kevin McMurtrie
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Thumb Up

The Register to the rescue

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/07/01/holy_water/

Just don't commit any crimes in Lourdes.

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Brace yourself for 4TB drives next year

Kevin McMurtrie
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Unhappy

Consumer RAID lagging

Consumer RAIDs rebuild at 1 to 20 MB per second. That makes rebuilding a 4194304 MB disk not so fun.

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Moz tweaks extension crash controls in Firefox

Kevin McMurtrie
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WTF?

Can't finish in 10 seconds?

26 billion CPU clock cycles on seems generous.

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Microsoft dubs Windows Phone 7 'ad serving machine'

Kevin McMurtrie
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Gates Halo

Party like it's 1999, pack your things like it's 2001

Pleasing advertisers was the key to success in the 90s. That was followed dot-com decimation around the year 2000 when customers left seeking actual content. Bill Gates needs to pull a Steve Jobs - Return to MS to save it from doom.

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Vauxhall Ampera extended range e-car

Kevin McMurtrie
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Boffin

No shifting

Fancier electric motors work fine with a single gear ratio. Moving the torque curve can be done by changing voltage ranges, changing windings, or by mechanically moving the magnets.

I don't know why you're having traction control problems with an automatic gearbox. Good cars have precision control over wheel spin. An electric motor would be even more precise and a rat's nest of complex brake modulation plumbing would go away. It's just a matter of the engine control computer in an electric car knowing how to do it.

My only gripe about electric cars is that they're still lacking refinement. The technology isn't mature enough to build an affordable electric car that is durable, sporty, and efficient all at the same time. This car comes close but I have my doubts that being efficient for only the first 40 miles is good enough.

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Apple reels as Steve Jobs Flashturbates

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Uncool

Sure, Adobe went stale after the 1990s but many of the attacks were undeserved. Advertisers' desire to consume as many resources as possible will persist whether Flash exists or not. Remember high frame rate animated GIFs that looped forever? Advertisers will drain the battery with poorly coded H.264 and JavaScript animations too. Last time I checked, QuickTime wasn't any less prone to crashing than Flash, either. It's great to ban Flash because of its obsolescence but Apple's barbs will come around full-circle.

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Google tells staff to snub Windows after China hack snafu

Kevin McMurtrie
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Big Brother

ha

You missed the point. Google is worried about Google's security, not yours.

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Google turns on SSL encryption for search

Kevin McMurtrie
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Big Brother

Blocks referrer

I searched for my own site while watching the server logs. With plain http, a click produced my full Google query in my logs through the 'Referer' header. Https scoping blocked the referrer data, so this does have some value. Malware sites won't be able to create customized fake pages and it will prevent a dozen web sites knowing that you searched for "rapid corpse disposal."

It's good news for Google too. It makes their collected data very exclusive, and Google is all about making money from data.

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Consumers still want it hard

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

1.0 not there yet

Version 1.0 has lots of problems. High capacity systems are heavy, there's no backlight for low light reading, pages sometimes change on their own, it keeps losing bookmarks, there's no search, and I can't seem to unhighlight text. I've opened and closed the PTech several times hoping it would update itself, but no luck yet.

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Google's WiFi snoop - who knew and who didn't?

Kevin McMurtrie
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Big Brother

See? That didn't hurt. I'm really your friend.

Expect more harmless accidents to come from Google. It's desensitizing public to privacy intrusions and abuses of personal data, and it has been going on for years now.

Microsoft was called evil because they fought dirty to take control of your software. Google is all that and they want your data too.

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WiGig gets spec and Alliance endorsement

Kevin McMurtrie
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Like IR, but more invisible

60GHz sounds like it's going to have all the hassles of IR but with higher costs. What IR tech always lacks is a temporary visible beam to assist aiming. With a visible guiding beam, you could chose a common location on a wall or ceiling for all devices to bounce their signal off of.

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Applesoft, Ogg, and the future of web video

Kevin McMurtrie
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Dead Vulture

AAC

A critical factor not mentioned here is codec efficiency and quality. A poorly performing codec can drive up bandwidth costs, drive up the cost of encoding hardware, or provide a poor customer experience. H.264/AAC was chosen as a standard by many large companies because it completely blew away other codes at the time. Suddenly home users could stream high quality video without exotic internet connections or hours of buffering. To also imply that H.264/AAC will be the future standard is ridiculous. Codecs come and go.

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Adobe to sue Apple 'within weeks,' says report

Kevin McMurtrie
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Jobs Horns

Popcorn

Apple could simply have power drain specifications to reject inefficient apps. Bad code comes in all forms so the coding language restrictions do a poor job of hiding Steve's raging ego. There are also certain tasks where JIT-compiled JavaScript, Java, Perl, etc. can run very efficiently.

Developers using Flash rarely have intentions of efficiency. It's too often a short-cut language for rapid offshore development. Adobe can run a big angry lawsuit only to find all of their apps being rejected again on technical grounds. It's all going to be amusing.

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French city in pedestrian-powered streetlight plan

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Immortal hoax

Two ways to do this: Squishy liquid pouches powering turbines that feel like walking on soft sand or sidewalk plates that sink so you're always climbing stairs. Either way it won't happen.

If cities want to suck some free energy from somewhere, put this technology on steep downhill roads where it would otherwise go towards heating brakes..

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'Switch to Century Gothic to save the planet'

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Sponge

Inkjet printers flush their liquid money into gutters at the edges of the page. It's a solution for stagnant pigment clogging the nozzles, with a pleasant side effect for the printer manufacturer . Thin font or fat font hardly matters. The difference ends up in a large sponge at the bottom of the printer.

Epic fail for a university IT department not figuring out a paperless workflow at least 10 years ago.

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Apple display patent enslaves sun

Kevin McMurtrie
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Thumb Down

Prior fart

I had a handheld TV that did this in the 80s. You opened the case partway and watched the LCD from a mirror on the base. There's a good reason for them not being made any more. Even with impossibly perfect optics, color LCD screens can never be more than 16% transmissive. E-ink is more efficient but it doesn't need backlighting contraptions.

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Getting drunk the night before has no effect on exam results

Kevin McMurtrie
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Paris Hilton

One-legged 'A'

So both test groups flunked?

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Botnet pierces Microsoft Live through audio captchas

Kevin McMurtrie
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Gates Horns

White of insufficient illumination

"...to send email through accounts with a Live.com address, which are whitelisted by many spam filters."

Not mine. Not as long as Microsoft has no working abuse contacts.

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US National Broadband plan goes to Congress

Kevin McMurtrie
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FAIL

Party like it's 1999

4Mbps? At best this will be a few billion dollars spent cleaning up the splices of ancient telephone wires. Very little of the effort for this initiative will be of any use towards the future 50Mbps goals.

Can you hear that? That's the sound of modern nations laughing.

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