* Posts by Phil O'Sophical

2649 posts • joined 28 Oct 2011

Magnetic, heat scanners to catch Tour de France electric motor cheats

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Tech

Colin Furze pulse jet bikes

I had to google that. The guys is mad, but I want one!

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Osborne on Leave limbo: Travel and trade stay unchanged

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Growing Sense of bereavement..

There is absolutely no way I would accept that the politicians or career civil servants running any government or bureaucracy are an elite..

They think they are, that's the problem.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Growing Sense of bereavement..

Or we could grow up,

Yes Daddy. I'm sure you know what's best for us stupid little children.

look at the realities, decide that economic suicide isn't a good plan and ignore the referendum result. You know, like the Greek referendum on the bailout. Or the Irish referendum on the Nice Treaty. And the Lisbon Treaty.

Yes, and while we' re at it we could forget those "election" things, we obviously don't know enough to make the right decisions about who will rule us. Let's just name Vati Juncker "King of Europe" and go back to minding our sheep.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Even here at the bottom end it's a mess

A shrinking economy to the tune of 2 trillion USD in a couple of days is not a problem?

Two days isn't long enough to decide if the economy is shrinking at all, and a twitchy stock market doesn't define a 'shrinking economy" anyway, so no, I don't think there's a problem yet. The markets are still in passably healthy shape over the year so far. We see the same twitchiness after general elections, give it a few months and then review the situation when heads have cooled.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Project FUD is alive and well

Interesting. I've got 7 downvotes already just for asking a question, and the only attempt at an answer starts "Not got the figures to hand, but I suspect..."

Anyone who has the figures to hand want to take a stab at an answer?

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Growing Sense of bereavement..

Remainers have to do nothing. YOU fix it!

Fine, if the remainers will agree not to keep kicking more holes while saying "we're sinking, told you so"

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Growing Sense of bereavement..

the pound would fall, unemployment would go up, there'd be a recession, we wouldn't be able to get access to the common market without following all the rules anyway, hell, even that the price of holidays would go up. Y'know, all the stuff that's actually happened over the last few days.

No, almost none of it has happened.

The pound has dropped. A little. Three months ago it was $1.43, now it's $1.37. Not surprising with all the uncertainty, it's only been two working days since the result. It's way too soon to speak of unemployment (which was the lowest in Europe anyway) or a recession, or holidays, or access to the common market.

Just about the only thing that hasn't happened is Osborne's Brexit Budget

That was just Remainer FUD.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Growing Sense of bereavement..

I do think that some of them were duped possibly even conned by the Leave campaign with promises that are patently impossible even after several years of nogotiations;

You could say exactly the same about the Remain campaign, where promises about more control and more independence were just so much hot air.

The vote was Leave, now we have to make it work. Regretting it, or hoping it was just a bad dream, won't change anything, and trying to make leaving more difficult will only make things worse for everyone.

We have a once in a generation opportunity that we didn't have a week ago. Sad days perhaps, for those who want an easy life. Happy days for those willing to take that opportunity.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Even here at the bottom end it's a mess

@ Phil O'Sophical A devalued Pound is only beneficial if none of your purchases are in another currency.

Indeed so, but as the original poster clearly said, his company buys parts from Belgium, and sells finished goods to Germany. He wil lose one one, but gain on the other. The sky is not falling.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Even here at the bottom end it's a mess

Also we've now got the fun situation of having to fix a £/€ exchange rate, to be able to quote people in £ for new machines to be ordered in a month or more, to be paid for in €.

So talk to your accountant about currency hedging, there's nothing new or Brexit-specific about that.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Even here at the bottom end it's a mess

our biggest single customer is German and some huge proportion of our business trickles down from [unnamed motor manufacturer

our major suppliers due to exchange rates became 6% more expensive

So, your exports just got 6% cheaper as well, or to put it another way every EU sale now gets you 6% more income. Swings & roundabouts.

I've never seen such a bunch of glass-half-empty pessimsists :)

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Phil O'Sophical
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Project FUD is alive and well

more than one-third would continue to hire at the same pace.

a quarter planned to freeze recruitment, with five per cent expecting to fire staff.

One in five are considering moving some of their operations outside of the UK

one per cent will bring operations back.

So what are the figures for any other July? is this any different from "business as usual?

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Botnet-powered ballot stuffing suspected in 2nd referendum petition

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: The debate

Interest rates maybe dropping to 0% - savings get less interest.

Like Germany you mean, where interest rates are negative? You actually have to pay the government to take your savings.

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Time to re-file your patents and trademarks, Britain

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: MD a Trade? WTF?

The odd-jobbing domestic electrician (and plumber I suspect) is under pressure and the only people who can afford to do it are those who are willing to work at the lowest rates, cash-in-hand and perhaps bend the rules slightly.

If there's a need for the services, then there will always be people who can provide them. To a certain degree the situation with plumbers is mirroring that with TV & radio repairs. When TVs were expensive and broke down a lot, there were lots of repair shops. As they became more reliable, and largely disposable, the need for repairs pretty much vanished. Repairs that do happen are now plug-in modules that get sent back to a central factory, there's little demand for workshop-level component diagnosis and replacement.

Years ago many plumbing calls were to replace washers, unblock drains, etc. Modern ceramic taps have a much greater washer-free life, and as you say modern plastic piping removes the need for brazing/soldering skills, and DIY is possible for many things (not gas-related, of course). For bigger problems like leaks I think most people today would start by calling their insurance company, and the insurers would have deals with larger plumbing companies to handle such problems.

Other changes to modern life have also had an impact. You don't need a jobbing plumber or electrician in your village who can pop round on his bike, because they all have vans and can come from a larger business in a nearby town. They have cellphones, websites & answering machines. It changes the whole business model.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Moody's actual statement

These are the reasons that Moody's has already set the outlook for the UK to negative.

Not exactly true.

Their statement said "Moody's expects a negative impact on the economy unless the UK government manages to negotiate a trade deal that largely replicates its current access to the Single Market." (my italics)

and they confirmed that "Britain would remain on an AA+ rating, three years after it cut it from AAA"

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

I really thought that the British public had a few more brain cells than they obviously have. Stupid, selfish and short sighted.

Way to go. Insult 17 million people just because they don't agree with your point of view. I think that really only demonstrates that it is you who are "selfish and short sighted".

The people I feel sorry for are the young ones. They will have to suffer the consequences of this appalling mistake.

On the contrary, they will be the first people in a generation to have the opportunity to fix the mess their parents created. Whether they will actually fix it only time will tell, but at least they have that chance now. Let's hope they don't screw it up.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

Personally it looks as though there may be enough pressure to force a second referendum or dicount this one, so leaving may not actually happen.

That would be the worst possible outcome. It would simply label the UK as a country that doesn't know what it wants, can't make it's mind up, and so can be completely ignored by the EU steamroller. We'd be stuck in the EU, with no credibility, and no power to change it (not that any individual country apart from Germany has any power to change it anyway).

The only option we have now is to make exit work. The defeatists who won't do that, and who seem to want the UK to fail just to prove that they were right, have made themselves part of the problem.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

Ununited, silly!

Just make a small letter order change. The Untied Kingdom.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: And so it starts.

He does this every 6 months, come rain, shine or Brexit.

I think you'll find that Madame Natacha Bouchart is a she.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

I would have voted Leave if I could have, and although I'm happy about the result I'm not crowing. My biggest concern now is that Remainers who won't accept the decision will fuck everything up just to "prove" they were right.

As for things not improving "since the vote" it's only been 30 hours since the result, FFS! Everyone will be holding their breath for a few weeks at least before making big decisions or changes, it would be foolish to do otherwise.

The next steps will be to identify a cross-party negotiating team, with business and financial leaders as well as politicians, and start sounding out EU partners to find out if they're going to be pragmatic and helpful, or petty and difficult. A long chat with Norwegian leaders wouldn't hurt either.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: And so it starts.

Except that "refoulement" in that sense refers to returning them to their country of origin, which generally isn't France. If the French applied international law, and abided by the Dublin agreement, they would require those asylum seekers to request asylum in France.

Once the migrants/asylum seekers are in Europe, EU or otherwise, it's too late to deal with the problem anyway. The only real solution is to prevent them from leaving their own country, preferably by stopping that country from being a war zone. Encouraging them to run away from the problem and export it to Europe doesn't help.

That solution, of course, is independent of the EU, and of UK membership of the EU, which is why the whole migrant issue is a red herring as far as Brexit was concerned.

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PM resigns as Britain votes to leave EU

Phil O'Sophical
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If they'd had that rule and a referendum BEFORE we signed up to the various intermediate treaties...

Indeed. The EU was created by the Maastricht treaty, and France only voted to accept that by 51%. If we don't accept 52% as valid for Brexit then we can't accept 51% as valid for creating the EU in the first place.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: It was a very, very close decision...

How exactly is "didn't give a shit either way" different from "OK with the status quo"?

"OK with the status quo" is a choice. "didn't give a shit either way" is "Meh, do whatever the fuck you want", not the same thing at all.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Gutted

I've grown up with the European project as it evolved into a single market and a free movement area. For the past 20 years I've exercised my right to live and work in another member country.

Me too, and if I'd had the vote that Cameron promised me when he was elected I'd still have used it to vote "Leave".

And for what? To spite foreigners?

For some, maybe. For me it's because the EU has lost its way and has no justification for existing in its present form. It's a train heading for a cliff, and the drivers show no sign of even wanting to open their eyes to look. Brexit will hurt, but not half as much as Remain would have done in 10-15 years time when the crash happens. Maybe Brexit will be the wakeup call the eurocrats need, somehow I doubt it.

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Phil O'Sophical
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If the benefits of staying in the EU were so clear and so numerous it may have paid for the Remain camp to tell us what that are rather than adopt the "sky will fall in" tactic.

When the only argument a politician can give you is "vote my way, because the others are all worse" you know it's time to ignore him.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Gutted

My father who has lived in France for 20 years is not only gutted but fucking terrified.

He shouldn't be. After 20 years he's probably eligible for French citizenship if he wants it (assuming he's integrated, speaks French, etc.) but in any case he'll be covered by all the usual guarantees of "acquired rights" (see the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, for example, which says that ending a treaty doesn't affect prior rights granted under that treaty). Even if France stops accepting UK citizens as automatic residents, people who are already established residents have no need to panic.

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Phil O'Sophical
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if you were France, with all the internal problems you currently have, would you keep hundreds of police at Calais protecting the UK border

Right now I suspect they're much more worried about the idea that all those migrants might not want to go to the UK any more.

or would you allow EDF to risk going bust by building Hinckley Point.

Hardly related to the EU, that particular argument has been raging for months anyway.

If you were Germany and you're now left being the biggest and most pwerful member by default.

They were that already.

what do you do next?

Try not to be seen rubbing my hands with glee in public, while also figuring out how to keep selling expensive cars to my biggest European market without upsetting French plans to bring in swinging anti-UK import duties?

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Phil O'Sophical
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The Remain portion of the campaign/political class has no mandate - the electorate charged the Brexiteers with taking action and it is up to the politicians of that flavour to now pick up the baton and get all the ducks lined up and lead the charge

Very true. Brexit was never the solution to the EU, it's just the opportunity to find that solution, if people are willing to work together to do so. That will take hard work from both Remain and Leave camps.

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Phil O'Sophical
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It’s a catastrophe for the European Union,

A self-inflicted one.

And I've already heard the word "repatriation" used in connection with those European workers over here.

Which is complete bollocks. There are twice as many EU workers in the UK as there UK workers in the rest of Europe. No country, including the UK, is going to be so stupid as to start playing that game, the resulting tit-for-tat would be a guaranteed lose-lose result. It's probably also illegal under "acquired rights" from the existing treaties anyway (but IANAL)

The big question now is whether the "remainers", in the UK and Europe, are willing to make the result work, or are they just going to whinge about how terrible it all is, while doing sweet FA to actually solve the problems as they arise?

At least Cameron did the right thing, if he truly was in the "remain" camp he'd never be able to put his heart into negotiating a proper exit strategy, especially since we've already seen how useless he is at negotiating for something he said he does believe in.

I'm not sure Boris would be an improvement, though. Perhaps better to find a safe pair of hands as PM (from where?) and leave Boris as the bolshie, French-speaking, leader of "team negotiate Europe".

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Patriotic Brits rush into streets to celebrate… National Cream Tea Day

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: An issue that bitterly divides the countries

s/country/countries/

As an expat, I'm disappointed that the only clotted cream I can find is that long-life UHT abomination sold in jars. Perhaps the Cream Tea Society could address that serious issue?

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Maplin Electronics demands cash with menaces

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Repeating the same mistakes

Visiting the high street these days feels like stepping through a timewarp,

That, I think, has more to do with local councils that are unable to grasp the idea that continually pushing rates and parking charges through the ceiling drives interesting small shops out of business, or online. Only the tired old behemoths like Boots and Smiths still persevere, probably because they don't know how to do anything else. Plus the charity shops, of course, who take the cheap short-term end-of-lease deals from the other shops the councils drove out of business.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: first online shopping

Display Electronics

Ah yes, the "distel" service. Brings back memories. I still have a working RGB monitor I bought from them for my Amiga...

Whatever happened to Watford Electronics?

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Sad excuse for the company it once was...

?I had my 4 digit customer number

And the basic A5 catalogue with a Concorde on the cover,,,

These days the physical stores just sell overpriced tat, and Amazon does a better job online.

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Brexit: More cash for mobile operators or consumers? Pick one

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: I am for leave because I am pro Europe

That would put us back in the old situation of Euro-squabbles escalating, which the EU has managed to do a fine job of preventing.

The EEC did a fine job of preventing it, the EU has done nothing but make it worse. The big rise in extremist, populist parties (left and right) has largely happened since the eurocrats started to build their United Europe, post-Maastricht.

And a few years down the line someone will probably try to unify Europe again, by the old methods.

Old or new, its clear that the majority of European people don't want a unified Europe, they want a co-operative one, so any attempts to unify Europe will fail. The problem is how to make it fail without escalating into WW3. Someone has to get that message across to the politicians, if asking nicely doesn't work then maybe a kick in the balls will.

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Phil O'Sophical
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something so awesome we all say "take my money, please!" rather than just extortion

I thought that's what iPhones were for?

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Phil O'Sophical
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"No one has any idea how this is going to play out. No one knows what trade deals will be cut and the impact of a restriction on freedom of movement. It might be hunky-dory, it might not."

Indeed so, which makes articles like this entirely pointless.

Phone operators have a target of money they want to make from their customers. They'll find a way, if one door is closed another will be nudged open.

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Watch as SpaceX's latest Falcon rocket burns then crashes

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Engines and SSTO

It must be pretty galling to have run out of the last kilo of oxidiser only five metres above the pad. Is that really what happened?

It's called "range anxiety", something Musk is surely familiar with.

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Crims set up fake companies to hoard and sell IPv4 addresses

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Arrogant architects

suggestions for adding a "feature flag" that lists an extended address in the header would only have slowed packet processing down for all time.

Not necessariy "for all time". The problem is the complete lack of compatibility between v4 and v6. It wouldn't have been impossible to develop a model where v.new was the desired endpoint, but there was a hacky v.intermediate which could handle old and new formats. A staged rollout could then have allowed an upgrade to intermediate, probably with a "feature flag" hack, and then a later move to v.new, without ever needing to make the massive forklift-upgrade that has made IPv6 well-nigh impossible to implement for existing, non-technical, users.

They managed it for phone numbers, going from "01 is London" to "01 is geographic", etc. It wasn't easy, multiple changes were required, but hardly anybody had to buy new phones.

I strongly suspect that for basic, cheap, home broadband, we're going to see CGNAT as the technology of choice for the next decade or so.

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Microsoft releases open source bug-bomb in the rambling house of C

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: C is not an applications programming language

you know, like 'strcpy(buffer, string)' --- should be 'strncpy(bufer, string, maxlen)'

No, it should be 'strlcpy(bufer, string, maxlen)' which prevents overflow and gurantees null-termination. The "l" form of strcat is even more useful, since you don't need to mess around with strlen calculating how much is left in the buffer. Errors there lead to so many off-by-one mistakes.

If you must use strncpy, then at least use 'strncpy(bufer, string, maxlen-1)' to make room for the null.

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Password reset: 45 million creds leak from popular .com forums

Phil O'Sophical
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I wonder if it is possible that these are a result of an insufficiently random password reset tool?

That, or maybe it hashes to the same unsalted MD5 as "password", but being alphabetically earlier show up first in the list?

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Virgin Media goes TITSUP* in South London due to painful piles

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: It's always been a problem

Afraid your statement is simply not true. It isn't worth doing.

That wasn't my experience when I worked for a company that owned the underground plant these guys usually dug through. Granted that was more local-council-level repairs, not major construction projects, but those guys never even bothered to call the hotline to ask if there was plant, they just dug & hoped for the best.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: "won’t be able to make a full repair until the pile is removed"

Hmm, I was expecting that link to be gruesomely medical and in very poor taste. Quite tame, really.

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Phil O'Sophical
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It's always been a problem

It is understood that the construction company was fully aware of the location of all the networks running through and around their site in advance of the build.

Past experience shows that for these companies it slows down work too much to mark out and dig carefully around services. Generally speaking, it's much easier and cheaper for them to dig away, and just pay the occasional bill they get sent for repairing any damage. To them it's just a cost-benefit analysis, they don't have to care about the inconvenience to others.

Maybe if Ofcom could fine them for the disruption caused things might change, but they'll not change just because they might get their wrists smacked really firmly.

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Boffins decipher manual for 2,000-year-old Ancient Greek computer

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Wait for tim

"I told you that you weren't holdng it right. Now you jump in and fetch it.

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Phil O'Sophical
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In other words, a user manual.

Sounds more like online help to me...

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Sneaky brown dwarf gives us a bright flash and astroboffins are confused

Phil O'Sophical
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Just one of those early CFL stars then, probably best to replace it with an LED (Light Emitting Dwarf).

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Wales gives anti-vaping Blockleiters a Big Red Panic Button

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Vaping is harmless

"harmless" is reasonable.

Harmless, but irritating. A bit like farting, and I'd hope you'd have the good manners not to do that right beside me either.

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Forget Game of Thrones as Android ransomware infects TVs

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Killing TVs, a step too far

By extension, a proper supervisor should have a mechanism that can always be reached when you need it allowing you to administer anything running on it

What is commonly known as "a backdoor", you mean? Yeah, that'll work.

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Let's Encrypt lets 7,600 users... see each other's email addresses

Phil O'Sophical
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No, the error was not testing it on dummy data before using it on their actual user base.

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