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* Posts by TheOtherHobbes

850 posts • joined 15 Feb 2012

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Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: If Amazon is convinced that it's right…

Amazon has been doing this for a while.

Not a few authors have jumped ship and started selling direct - often with a significant increase in income.

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TheOtherHobbes
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Re: We pay Hachette for their good judgement

The mainstream publishing drivel storm is alive and well and full of Oxbridge luvvies, ghostwritten sleb biogs, and middlebrow nonentities specialising in novels about wine, shoes, husbands, and bitchy middle class nastiness.

No one in the business believes someone like Thomas Pynchon or Jane Austen would be signed today.

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Microsoft bakes a bigger Pi to cook Windows slabs

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: re. Sharks Cove apostrophe

>Or it could be a cove with lots and lots of sharks.

And no frickin' laser beams.

Or Ethernet.

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Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Meteor?

Are you saying my iPhone is really a dinosaur?

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Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series

TheOtherHobbes
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Amazon makes TV series about dystopian future?

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SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud

TheOtherHobbes
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AWS is a footnote in the Amazon business model - it's less than 10% of revenue - so this article is silly. AZ could walk away from AWS tomorrow and hardly notice.

It's the Any Old Iron companies - IBM, HP, Microsoft, etc - who need to worry about commodity cloud pricing, because it's critical to their business models.

If prices crash - and they will - they're going to be in a world of pain.

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DAYS from end of life as we know it: Boffins tell of solar storm near-miss

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: power grid

Carrington happened in 1859, which was not a few decades ago.

12% seems unlikely, but not quite impossible. Before this story, the more common estimate was that Carringtons happened once every century, which seems more believable.

[doomporn] Of course the next event might be even worse than the 1859 one.[/doomporn]

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Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: One OS

>MInd you, a horse with a steering wheel would be pretty awesome

Until it stops suddenly, as horses sometimes do.

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Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov

TheOtherHobbes
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"What do you mean there's a problem with me copying your money? It's just bits in a file. You've still got it. I haven't stolen anything. Oh - you think money stored as digital files is different to content stored as digital files? Are you going to explain why, exactly?"

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Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs

TheOtherHobbes
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>It just works.

Close. Should be

"It just borks."

surely?

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Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Call Scooby and the gang!

>Are they sure he's not Ballmer in a mask?

Nadella and Microsoft are being scripted by the ghost of Douglas Adams.

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Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: You can't legislate against human behavior.

It's not human behaviour that's the problem.

If you could legislate against the more disgusting kinds of politician behaviour, the world would be a much more enjoyable place.

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Microsoft bags more CASH – but profit's flat as Nadella waves axe

TheOtherHobbes
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MS has a believable if not very imaginative plan for enterprise, with Azure, O365, SQL, and the rest.

It's not very interesting, and it's what everyone else is doing. But there's enough momentum in selling boring overpriced infrastructure to boring corporations to make it work for the forseeable.

MS has no plan at all for devices and consumer software. There's an unholy mess of incompatible hardware, incompatible operating systems, incompatible goals, incandescent user hostility, inexplicable rhetorical farting, and incoherent non-planning.

Unless Nadella can pull all of that together and/or reinvent MS as a company that has something unique to offer - don't hold your breath - MS is going to disappear from consumer-land entirely within ten years. Except maybe as a mouse and keyboard brand.

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New Star Wars movie plot details leak, violate common sense and laws of physics

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Please let this not be true...

I demand the following:

Lots of shouting, pointing, panning, and yelling

At least one scene of people running madly through a corn field

Swivelling helicopter shots of vehicles picking up speed

Lens flare!

Camera shake!

Explosions! In SPAAAAAACE!

A script that makes sense (Ah. Well then.)

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So whither Microsoft? If Nadella knows, he is keeping it well hidden

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: on slogans...

I think MS is repurposing its core synergised alignments to expand dynamically into new vertical, horizontal and diagonal opportunities as a world-class agile purveyor of flattened business bollocks.

It'll turn into an ad agency, with Nadella as Creative Director of Mobile Cloudy Vision.

Or possibly it will take an early international lead in walrus farming. Who knows?

Nadella doesn't seem interested in talking about products, so either is a reasonable guess.

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Amazon's Spotify-for-books: THE TRUTH

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: What about the authors?

Authors get paid at the usual Amazon rate if the book gets read past the 10% trial point.

So not actually a bad deal, so far as I can tell.

But of limited interest to most Kindle users. Only heavy readers are likely to spend more than $10/month on books. There are a few of those - romance readers are famously obsessive - but not as many as you might think.

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HP CEO Meg Whitman dons TRIPLE CROWN of POWER

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Corporate governance—crowned

>Your Board of Directors most important function is to facilitate the high level components of strategies developed by Executive Management.

LOLWUT?

If you mean 'They do the planning' - that pretty much never happens in the US either.

Look at M$. They swapped out a clown and installed the corporate blatherbot equivalent of ELIZA.

Look at HP. Strategy? Meg Hitman wouldn't know a strategy if it jumped out of a printer and yelled "Jobs!"

Last time I looked her 'high level components of strategies' meant a mix of enterprise, cloud, and tablets no one wants - just like everyone else.

Oh, and printers have been 'refocused around customer needs.' Which is nice. (What were they before? Focused on the needs of the trees in the parking lot?)

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Microsoft swings axe at 18,000 bods in its largest ever round of layoffs

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Good God, Synergies AND Alignment

He also said agile.

It's 100% Dilbert: "We have aligned agile synergies - we are INVINCIBLE!"

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Nadella: Yes I can put 2 THINGS FIRST. I will say them at the same time – CLOUDOBILE

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: "'We are building an operating system for human activity'"

I think he means 'Not just Office, but, like, life 'n shit.'

Photos! Documents! Memories! Shiny people!

Basically he's pitching MS as the next Yahoo, with some secret-sauce AI.

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Microsoft's new 'Adam' AI trounces Google ... and beats HUMANS

TheOtherHobbes
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Who - or what - do you think write Nadella's last strategy email?

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Microsoft not good enough for you, eh? 'Next Steve Ballmer' drives to Google

TheOtherHobbes
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I for one welcome the arrival of our new Googlord.

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Mobile, cloud, social? Data? Nadella strings sexy words together

TheOtherHobbes
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>weirdly disembodied and robotic

Nadella in a nutshell.

But... I wouldn't write off MS yet. There's actual AI happening in the MS labs, and some of it is the most interesting technology I've ever seen from MS.

But MS needs to get over Windows and Office to do something with it.

As a mobiles-with-AI corp, MS might have a future. But while it's Spawn-of-Gates Mk III, the long decline will continue.

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NASA: ALIENS and NEW EARTHS will be ours inside 20 years

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: A quote from Hawking

In theory you could make a collecting surface the size of a solar system, which would give you astonishing resolution.

In practice - something like this is more likely:

The FOCAL Project

Park a telescope out around >550AU, use the sun as a gravitational lens.

Not very steerable - you have to move your spacecraft to 'point' the telescope.

But you'd get one hell of a close-up. And it's sort-of almost achievable with current technology.

Interestingly, if a culture learned how to engineer gravity and warp space directly without using a nearby star, it could build an even strong version with a shorter focal length. But it would have to be even further out, because it have enough of a gravitational influence to begin perturbing the orbits of anything close to it.

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ISPs 'blindsided' by UK.gov's 'emergency' data retention and investigation powers law

TheOtherHobbes
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>Actually R'y'leh is UNDER the South Pacific!

No, R'y'leh lives at No 10 Downing Street, and has done for at least the last couple of decades.

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Military-grade bruiser: Getac F110 rugged tablet... is no iPad

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: HOW Rugged?

Someone has to say it:

"Will it blend?"

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Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: It's all very wonderful

>Well if you can't fit into your seat, I'm sorry but then you should be required to buy two.

Big people who can't fit into one seat can't fit comfortably into two either.

Seats are designed for smaller than average people. I can fit into a cattle class seat. I'm hardly huge, but it's not what you'd call comfortable.

>Or airlines need to revisit their seat designs to ensure people fit them.

Less money that way.

Although I suspect long-haul is only fully packed a few times a year, and they could easily lose a few rows of seats to give everyone more legroom on most flights without losing much income.

I'm waiting for the first carrier to put a capsule hotel in the sky. If more people could sleep on long-haul it would be much more comfortable. (Although you'd have to give everyone their own crying baby on check-in to keep that old-fashioned long-haul feeling.)

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Apple: No, China. iPhone is NOT public enemy number 1

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: This might just be the most ironic bit of PR ever

>Given China's undoubtedly dubious history of tracking its own people....

Lucky us to be living somewhere that doesn't happen.

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Microsoft wants to lure biz users with fondleable Windows 8.1 'Apportals'

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Reminds me of putting Lipstick on a pig

More of a GM FrankenPig with four heads, too many trotters, and a worryingly deep voice.

But at least it's been painted in a pleasing selection of very bright colours.

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Get ready for LAYOFFS: Nadella's coma-inducing memo, with subtitles

TheOtherHobbes
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>Apple truly has ravished the Windows brand!

That was so an image I didn't want.

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Say goodbye to the noughties: Yesterday’s hi-fi biz is BUSTED, bro

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: hi-res audio bullshit

>Agreed - these 24-bit/192khz systems are targeted at the same people who buy 500 megapixel cameras and 30 speed bicycles.

And professional producers and engineers, *none* of whom use 16/44.1 at work.

But what do they know, eh?

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Call girl injected Google exec with heroin, drank wine, left him to die – cops claim

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Ah.. a scandel in the finest traditions.

The little people can't afford $1000/night 'fun' on their personal yachts.

LD50 for heroin is only around 350mg. If you're down at the unlucky end of the bell curve half of that can kill you, especially when it's cut with random crap.

Even so, you'd think a professional junkie would know not to kill the john. Maybe she does this a lot?

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Man FOUND ON MOON denies lunar alien interface

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: "The offending footage of Buzz bopping Bart in the chops is on YouTube."

>CAUSE THAT VIDEO OF THE PUNCH IS FAKE!!! IT NEVER HAPPENED. IT'S ALL A CONSPIRACY BY BART SIBREL!!

But that's just what the lizard people want you to think.

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iWatch watch: Apple tags sales bod from luxury Swiss watch firm

TheOtherHobbes
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This kind of thing would be a total shift from Jobs-era iDevice marketing, where the product was the star, and the people selling it - the shiny, colourful, smiling, immaculately scrubbed people with perfect teeth and lives, who are the only kinds of people allowed to appear in Apple ads - were its supplicants.

Or possibly Cook just wants someone to hustle all the consumer jewellery outlets.

That would make sense.

Hiring some random dude to design ads makes no sense at all.

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That AMAZING Windows comeback: Wow – 0.5% growth in 2015

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: What's to look forward to?

OMG! Look everyone - it's the AntiEadon[tm].

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You 'posted' a 'letter' with Outlook... No, NO, that's the MONITOR

TheOtherHobbes
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But if he'd said 'Have you tried turning it off and on again?' none of this would have happened.

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Royal Navy parks 470 double-decker buses on Queen Elizabeth

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Exact Change

>Why not busses?

Cue the JamBusters March.

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ANGRY ALIENS hit by BEBO SPAMGASM probably don't exist

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: They did exist-

More likely the Sunspot Creatures monitored the blast telepathically and decided to stop dimming their sun rhythmically in an effort to get noticed.

Happens a lot, I've heard.

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Windows 7, XP and even Vista GAIN market share again

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: I don't see the mystery.

>she still couldn't grasp the concepts of applications and files and folders!

And this is who Win 8 was designed for - not the millions of PC users who can.

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'Disruptive innovation' is nonsense? Not ALWAYS, actually

TheOtherHobbes
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But the rush hour means that driverless cars will still be lying around idle all day. They'll just be lying around at the GoogleDepot[tm] or on grass verges and in random parking spaces.

They won't be outside people's homes, unless that particular piece of tarmac is a convenient parking space.

This may not sit well with punters who want a car now.

Even with Google's world-class stat skills and prediction models, there will still be people who want a car and have to wait for one. Those wait times will either make the service or kill it.

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TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Too much law

>I don't believe Nokia's senior managers are more or less stupid than those of the average globo corp

Nokia were already failing with insane internal competition, project sprawl, and bureaucracy. Core engineering was always world class. Manudjment was increasingly Harvard-led and dysfunctional.

But they could have recovered with good management - which Elop clearly wasn't.

As the original article points out, a lot of supposedly disrupted and failing corps go on to have long and happy lives.

I think we'll see Nokia back in personal comms once the MS agreement has run its course - and they'll still be better at it than MS is.

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We need to talk about SPEAKERS: Sorry, 'audiophiles', only IT will break the sound barrier

TheOtherHobbes
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Not only is the response not flat, the response is different for everyone. Fletcher-Munson is a best guess approximation.

In reality, everyone has different ears.

That aside - yes, perfect transient response would be a good thing. But isn't this the same John Watkinson who believes that 44.1kHz is perfectly adequate for audio?

Good luck getting perfect square waves out of any system with obvious band-limiting.

There's some debate about how much bandwidth you need for position estimation. It may only be a few kHz, so 44.1kHz is fine, and perfect square waves aren't necessary.

But also, it may be more complicated than that. One of the intriguing things about audio is how subtle it is, and how tiny changes can make such a huge difference to the sound.

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BBC: Bumpkins, hobbits need fairer coverage

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: I live in the country!

>I live in the country!

>...we also have this thing called a 60mb broadband connection?

Now I know you're lying. No one who lives in the real countryside has trains, or broadband. We're lucky to get 1.5MB/s down a piece of wire bought wholesale from RadioSpares back in the 80s.

Still, nice to see the Reg not being patronising at all to us country folk.

As for the badger cull - it had nothing to do with cute badgers (they're not all that cute, in fact) and everything to do with the fact that it was a stupid idea that couldn't possibly do anything useful to control bovine TB.

Which, to no one's surprise, except that of townie hoorays who like killing wildlife because they think it's fun, it didn't.

And the only reason Cuadrilla backed down (nominally - we'll see what they say a few years from now) at Balcombe was because they knew if they went ahead with fracking they'd get their arses kicked in court, and it wasn't worth the effort.

Once they'd been forced to stop because drilling was causing earthquakes, as happened in Weeton, I'm sure even the Cuadrilla board could estimate what a damages claim would cost.

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TheOtherHobbes
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Re: I don't get the BBC

I would totally watch a live action version of "The Archers" with werewolves.

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Maplin Electronics sold for £85m to Rutland Partners

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: How the sale went down

Not entirely fair. I've always found Maplin staff to be more informed than elsewhere. Some of them are even enthusiastic and genuinely helpful.

E.g. when I had to take a charger back, they had no trouble finding a record of the sale even though it was nine months earlier at another store.

But they're not cheap. And they're competing with the '50p for a mile of CAT6' Ebay people.

Shame, but big box retail probably isn't a good thing to be investing in now.

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Physicist proposes 1,000-foot state-sized walls to stop tornadoes

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: We need a bigger shovel

A real physicist would have proposed a time machine and a system for changing the Earth's tectonic plates.

Go back a hundred million years or so, move things around a bit, and you have all the mountains you want.

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Unexpected Termination Error at Year of Code: Chief dumps venture for other UK.gov riches

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Null pointer

If only this environment had working garbage collection.

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Creepy battery-operated TEDDY BEAR SEX TOY. Sadly, this is for real

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: That problem has been solved

Will there be a penguin version?

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EXPOSED: Massive mobile malware network used by cops globally

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Hacking Team?

>Not sure whether psychotic attack or trying to make sense?

Also applies globally.

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Labour vows: We'll pause one-dole-to-rule-them-all for drastic fix-up if elected in 2015

TheOtherHobbes
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Re: RE bullets cost too much, we'd be better of bludgeoning them all to death.

Why not make them pay for the bludgeons out of their benefits?

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TheOtherHobbes
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Re: Reality

"Unfortuntley some people just cannot be trusted to make the correct decision, and they will spend public money on crony projects for their old school mates."

Fixed that for you.

See also - allegedly - HS2 and HS3, NHS privatisation, mail privatisation, and many, many more.

But you're worried about a few people spending money on beer and fags?

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