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* Posts by Fink-Nottle

364 posts • joined 5 Apr 2012

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Banning handheld phone use by drivers had NO effect on accident rate - study

Fink-Nottle
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Re: Typing texts at the wheel is incredibly dangerous

> a driver *can* cause a massive amount of damage to themselves and innocent bystanders, even at a low speed

That's why instances of unlawful mobile use should be punished with a weekend of community service in an A&E department.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: Ban? What ban?

> I specifically stated the camera was to be fitted to the rear of your car, which would record both the drivers face and the number plate.

If you are going to operate a surveillance camera system from the back of your car, you'd need to be in compliance with the Surveillance Camera Code Of Practice. The code contains twelve guiding principles and, as far as I can tell, you'd be hard pressed to conform with any of them.

Apart from anything else, operating a vehicle fitted with surveillance equipment with the expressed intent of capturing traffic offences (even a fully automated system) is likely to be just as unsafe as using a mobile phone while driving. I'd report YOU in an instant ...

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Fear a terrifying killer robot revolution? GET A GRIP: Boffins invent cyborg hand for humans

Fink-Nottle
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Wowsers!

> smugly reject anything new

What's new about a mechanical arm that pops out of a hat? Inspector Gadget has had one for years.

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MYSTERIOUS Siberia CRATER: ALIENS or METEOR not involved, officials insist

Fink-Nottle
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Chaos!

The Russians have found out how to grow Mandelbrot sets.

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That stirring LOHAN motto: Anyone know a native Latin speaker?

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Re: Someone with a firm grasp of Latin grammar

Does he go around saying 'hujus, hujus, hujus' as if he were proud of it?

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

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Re: probability...

> Citation needed.

I sense hostility.

This stuff is basic physical cosmology, so I suggest you check out a current cosmology text. Failing that Parallel Universes Max Tegmark, Scientific American - May, 2003.

> There's a finite number of decimal digits, therefore the decimal expansion of pi must start repeating at some point. Oh, wait.

Not a good analogy. Nevertheless, pi is a normal number, so it it is conjectured that it will contain any a finite sequences of digits. One possible finite sequence is the coordinates of every particle in the observable universe ... and, if it contains one copy, it can contain an infinity of copies.

> Sometimes there seems to be an infinite number of people making sophomoric arguments that don't stand up to a moment's scrutiny, but I'm sure that's just an illusion.

True, that is just an illusion on your part. Physical cosmology is a branch of physics that is concerned with the scientific study of the universe at the largest scales. As Richard Dawkins remarked, “science replaces private prejudice with public, verifiable evidence.” I'm also reminded of another Dawkins' quotes “Science is interesting, and if you don't agree you can fuck off."

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Happy

Re: probability...

> It's better to argue with laymen with measured facts we know than seemingly fantastical theories.

"Eppur si muove"

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: A quote from Hawking

> Resources on a planet can for the most part never actually be used up.

It's posited that a Dyson sphere could require more material than all the planets in a solar system could provide.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: probability...

> The idea of there being duplicate Earths in the same dimension requires a few assumptions that it's not yet fair to make.

To be fair, the OP stated "the limitless vastness of the universe" as a given.

Nevertheless, there is some strong physical evidence in support of an infinite universe / duplicate earth scenario:

The WMAP mission measured the microwave background; and by mapping the hot and cold spots, was able to determine the topology of space. NASA's conclusion was "that the universe is flat with only a 0.4% margin of error." This suggests that the universe is either infinite or very, very large.

Similarly, three-dimensional galaxy distribution studies have shown that, on extremely large scales, the visible universe is monotonously uniform. This isotropy / homogeneity argues against the finite matter / island universe model. Indeed recent background radiation data gathered by Planck telescope seems to indicate the gravitational pull of matter outside our Hubble volume.

Even if there were huge fluctuations in the distribution of matter, there would still be an infinite number of Hubble volumes identical to ours in the universe - they would just be further apart.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: probability...

> Show me the maths.

Space-time is infinite. There's a finite number of ways particles can be arranged in space-time. Space-time must therefore start repeating at some point.

An infinite universe is thus guaranteed to contain multiple versions of you. The distance you need to travel to find a duplicate earth is a simple calculation.

There are 10^118 sub atomic particles in Hubble space. The number of possible arrangements of these particles is thus 2^10^118. Multiplying the number of arrangements by the diameter of the known universe - 8x10^26 meters - gives an average distance to the nearest duplicate earth of roughly 10^10^118 meters.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: A quote from Hawking

I suspect Hawkins quote predates the discovery that telluric planets are relatively commonplace. What possible resources could we offer intelligent life that could not be found on any of the many rocky exoplanets we've detected nearby - McDonald's?

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ALIEN BODY FOUND ON MARS: Curiosity rover snaps extraterrestrial

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Re: That's not a rock...

... it's a holy Martian relic.

It is a gift from the Gods that fell from heaven on a column of fire. It has been worn smooth by the adoring mandibles and tentacles of untold millions of Martian worshipers.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: Point of Order

Terrestrial means Earth-like, hence there are four terrestrial planets in the solar system - Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars.

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Google's Pankhurst doodle doo-doo shows the perils of using Google to find stuff out

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Re: The Register = quite wrong here

> As are all other pedants who think mediocre Google skills makes them feel a bit like god almighty.

Don't lean on me, man, coz you can't afford the ticket.

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Canuck reader threatens suicide over exact dimensions of SPAAAACE!

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Re: Shmoptional

> Where is the 'A' in "SPICE GIRLS"?

In Birmingham.

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Would it be BAD if the Amazon rainforest was all FARMS? Well it WAS, once

Fink-Nottle
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> the land was used for farms instead - without any associated eco-disaster.

There was no eco-disaster because pre-Columbian agriculture was associated with intentional soil improvement (see terra preta). This is in stark contrast to 'modern' slash and burn agricultural practices which are highly destructive.

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Brit celebs' homes VANISH from Google's Street View

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Re: But, but, but...

> a large sign outside saying "Tony Bliar Lives here"

Tony Blair lives in one of a row of homes with identical frontages in Connaught Square. Blurring his particular house just makes it more conspicuous.

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F1? No, it's Formula E as electric racing cars hit the track

Fink-Nottle
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Re: Hmmmm

Wireless charging pads will, no doubt, present ample opportunities for antisocial behaviour - especially as your e-car will be left unattended for extended periods. For example, what's to stop someone interposing their own charging pad between your car and the ground pad?

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El Reg is looking for a new London sub-editor

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Etymology

A knowledge of insects always comes in handy ...

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Google Nest slurps your life into the Matrix? The TRUTH

Fink-Nottle
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"a Mercedes Benz which notices when you're driving home"

I have a Nest, and it's certainly an improvement on the old thermostat which was not family friendly in the least. However, I don't think I'd be able to convince 'her inside' that we need a £30,000 update to the thermostat ...

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Backup bods Acronis extend disk-imaging support to Macs at last

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Re: Fifty quid?

Not only do you have the initial purchase price, but if Acronis follows the same pricing model as Parallels, there'll be a hefty upgrade fee with every OS X point release.

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Higgs boson even MORE likely to actually be Higgs boson - boffins

Fink-Nottle
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"the team from the CMS Collaboration, which includes boffins from Imperial College London, Ecole Polytechnique in Paris and the University of Wisconsin, fired protons at each other in a six metre diameter solenoid"

It'd be a tight squeeze, but it sounds like they had fun.

Did they use modified paintball guns?

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Titan sprouts 'Magic Island', say astroboffins

Fink-Nottle
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Fjords are difficult to get right ... they do give a planet a baroque feel, but it's easy to overdo 'em.

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Finding the formula for the travelling salesman problem

Fink-Nottle
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Re: The key..

> experience and insight on the part of the dispatcher

Sadly, such old-fashioned industrial 'craft' often isn't valued.

What never fails to blow my mind are those old-time analog gadgets that solve computationally hard problems. I've used a planimiter to 'automagically' find the area of irregular solids, and there's the classic example of the soap bubble Steiner tree.

http://highscalability.com/blog/2012/6/13/why-my-soap-film-is-better-than-your-hadoop-cluster.html

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Tom Hanks NICKED my COPYRIGHTED PIC, claims Brit photog

Fink-Nottle
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Re: Humbug

> You may not like it but the Army Act 1955 was superseded by the Armed Forces Act 2006 which has no such provision.

I apologise for my initial comment.

You are indeed correct. Since the repeal of the Army Act 1955 anyone is free to wear their relative's medals.

> It is highly unlikely that an organisation such as The Royal British Legion would actively promote breaking the law by encouraging you to wear a relatives decorations. I suspect that the authority to allow a person to wear another’s medals has been delegated to the Royal British Legion.

I believe the BL rules to be consistent with the special case of posthumous medal presented to next-of-kin. I suggest that the British Legion FAQ supports this reading.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: Humbug

>But it does conform with the letter of the law. It is not breaking any act of Parliament or any local ordinance.

You may not like it, but the law is unequivocal. Wearing a decoration without authority contravenes 197(1)(a) of the Army Act of 1955.

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Fink-Nottle
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Re: Humbug

> Aren't you a joyous individual. The man is proudly displaying and honouring his father's achievements and heroism. Not passing off as your sick suggestion would make him out to be.

I did not imply that he was passing off his father's medals as his own. I am aware of the custom of wearing a family member's medals on the right breast on Remembrance Day and, as a number of commentards have pointed out, provision for this is made in the Ceremonial Rules of the Royal British Legion. Nevertheless, although the practice is generally accepted I believe it is not officially sanctioned.

The point of my previous post was that an analogy can be drawn:

It's unlikely the photographer would be aware that wearing his dad's medals does not conform with the letter of the law. Similarly, it is unlikely that Tom Hanks (or more likely a staffer) was aware that posting the image would fall foul of copyright law.

Also, just as wearing his father's medals is not an attempt by the photographer to claim them as his own, it is equally improbable that Tom Hanks intended to pass off the images as his own.

As the OP noted, this is more than likely a case of 'casual ignorance'; to claim that attribution has been stolen is unnecessary hyperbole.

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Fink-Nottle
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Humbug

I note that Tim Martingdale stated on his website that he'd be wearing his dad's medals on Remembrance Sunday.

The official position is that you should not wear medals other than your own.

I suppose the moral niceties of attribution and rights only apply to your own works when you're a commercial photographer.

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DINOSAUR BLOOD: JUST RIGHT, as Goldilocks might say, if drinking it

Fink-Nottle
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Black Helicopters

> We live in a false paradigm reality bounded by faux science, fake history, filtered news and financed by a fiat currency.

Seems like everything I've ever read, seen or heard until now has been false.

I am so fortunate that some random guy on the internet has told me the truth.

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So, what exactly defines a 'boffin'? Speak your brains...

Fink-Nottle
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A boffin kno why attoms whizz.

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Whoops! Google's D-Day Doodle honors ... Japan

Fink-Nottle
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Re: YAAC

> Whilst it is easy to point and laugh at Hollywood's take on history, it should in no way be used to belittle the actual sacrifices of the US servicemen (and women) on D-Day.

There's a fair amount of mythology surrounding the US contribution to D Day too.

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Freeview's rumoured '£100m YouView killer' is real – and it's yet another digital TV thing

Fink-Nottle
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21st century solution

Why does the BBC et al bother paying for distribution? All public broadcasters need to do is put content on a crappy server in a basement somewhere. Within 24 hours, high quality pirated copies of the programs will be available worldwide, at no cost to the broadcaster.

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Evidence of ancient WORLD SMASHER planet Theia - FOUND ON MOON

Fink-Nottle
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Planetisimal?

"The Moon was probably formed by a catastrophic collision of the proto-Earth with a planetesimal named Theia."

I think the word the boffin was searching for was protoplanet.

My understanding of the term planetisimal is that it describes the smallest possible aggregation of matter that can be called a planet - usually defined as that size where gravitational attraction overtakes brownian motion in the accretion process.

It's improbable that a teeny, tiny planetisimal was responsible for moon formation. On the other hand, a massive protoplanet could deliver a decent sized whack to the early earth.

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Android is a BURNING 'hellstew' of malware, cackles Apple's Cook

Fink-Nottle
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Re: Tired

> Its a developers conference, for developers! Not a product launch, not a public announcement.

Absolute drivel. WWDC has regularly been used to announce hardware since the Xserv in 2002.

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Fink-Nottle
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Happy

Re: Adam & Eve left their garden

> And the origin of all of Adam and Eve's problems? An Apple.

'Fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil' sounds more like a Google product to me.

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Google's Nexus devices get stealth Android update

Fink-Nottle
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Re: As it stands, KitKat is only running on 8.5 per cent of all Android devices in use

I wonder, Tim, what percentage of the group of devices that support KitKat don't have it installed?

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What data recovery software would you suggest?

Fink-Nottle
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Hard Copy

Backup & Recovery is a good read on the subject - as is the author's website.

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The hoarder's dilemma: 'Why can't I throw anything away?'

Fink-Nottle
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Lost Youth

My S.O. decided to tidy up the junk room. While I was glad to see the back of most of the 'puter related tat, unfortunately she binned my prized HP25C calculator - complete with original packaging and manuals.

The 25C was my last tangible link to the bright young lad I once was. I worked the summer break between school and uni to afford it and it served me faithfully through my student years. It had great looks and a fantastic tactile keyboard. It would hang from my belt in it's little pouch like a wild west gunslinger's shootin' iron and I quite prided myself on my ability to rattle off a calculation at the drop of a hat.

It's sad to loose a part of my youth, but there's a lesson to be learned. Look after the things that are dear to you, coz no one else will ...

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Apple: Scrubbing may not yet have cleansed iThings of BLOOD

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Re: Is this an iDagger I see before me?

Beware, Mac duff.

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Google's driverless car: It'll just block our roads. It's the WORST

Fink-Nottle
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> How will it pay the toll over the Severn Bridge?

Trick question.

Everyone knows a journey to Wales in a Google car would be impossible. Welsh place names have too many characters to be input by touch screen and are impossible to decipher using speech recognition.

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Fink-Nottle
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Look on the bright side ...

... no more Jeremy Clarkson on the TV!!!

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It's Google's NO-WHEEL car. OMG... there aren't any BRAKES

Fink-Nottle
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Re: Bar Transport

> I've never understood why old people drive so slow.

Driving slow is the way people reach old age.

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Re: Safety system.....from Google,,, I don't think so.

> I have some FOOLS GOLD selling,,,are you interested.

That kinda begs the question, why do you have all that FOOL'S GOLD in the first place?

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Fink-Nottle
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> So what happens when the teenagers figure if they step in front of this it will stop.

Pedestrian collision avoidance will be a feature of 'ordinary' cars long before Google's autonomous cars are a thang.

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Tech that we want (but they never seem to give us)

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Happy

A safe way to perform Quake style rocket jumps in real life.

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French teen fined for illegal drone flight

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Re: Stupid bureaucrats

> "In this article ‘a small unmanned surveillance aircraft’ means a small unmanned aircraft which is equipped to undertake any form of surveillance or data acquisition."

> This aircraft is clearly covered.

We'lI have to agree to disagree, because I don't think it's clear at all. A camera is necessary but not sufficient to equip an aircraft for surveillance. However, if Knowles was 'done' under the 50m rule then clearly the judge was of the opinion that S167 applied.

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Re: Stupid bureaucrats

> It would be the same here; such a flight would be contrary to the Air Navigation Order.

That's not entirely true. In the Nancy case the teenage apparently lacked proper training and air authority permission to fly in an urban space. The Air Navigation Order merely states that "The person in charge of a small unmanned aircraft may only fly the aircraft if reasonably satisfied that the flight can safely be made."

There are more restrictive ANO rules that apply to unmanned surveillance aircraft, but using a camera to record the flight of a small unmanned aircraft does not equate to surveillance - a distinct activity carried out "for the purpose of influencing, managing, directing, or protecting" people or property.

(In Mr Knowles' case, his model aeroplane strayed into a no-fly zone over a BAE facility which is entirely different kettle of three-eyed fish. )

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US skywatchers get Earth's first peek at new meteor shower

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Re: Vanitas vanitatum omnia vanitas

> Nope. The cake is a lie.

O vanitas vanitatum, which of us is happy in his life?

Which of us has our desire, or having it, is gratified?

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