* Posts by Ledswinger

4493 posts • joined 1 Jun 2012

Hewlett Packard Enterprise axing services techies again

Ledswinger
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Re: I would propose a law stating that...

After massive sacks, bonuses can't be paid to executives for the following five years.

That's the sort of protectionist legislation that's left the French economy as the sick man of Europe. I think companies should be at liberty to dump staff whenever they want, subject to two caveats:

1) Where jobs are moved offshore, duties should be imposed equivalent to the avoided UK employment taxes. At c13% employers NI, say 12% employee NI, and an average rate of 7% for income tax, so that'd be about 32% of the UK salary. That'd make UK based companies think twice before hollowing out the UK economy.

2) Statutory redundancy pay to be significantly higher, and with few get out clauses for employers. If companies need or want to get rid of people, let them do it. But as somebody who has been lucky enough to be paid off handsomely twice by virtue of generous employers, I'd like to see that cushion far more widely offered. And the thieves of government could also raise the tax free element by about double.

I suspect that there's more than a few of HP's discarded workforce who are actually delighted to have gone, if they've had decent exit terms.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Going to get hard for the marketing team

When they try to convince a prospect that HPE can do on-site support they're going to start hearing "Oh yeah ? With who ?"

Sadly not. The ITO (and BPO) markets are driven by knowledge asymmetry between client and vendor. The decision makers at the client don't have a clue what costs the vendor has, and suck up the promises of vast savings AND superior service. By the time they find out otherwise they've signed a long term, and very one sided SLA and its too late.

Even if the client asks the right questions, they'll get the sort "of acknowledge-bridge-convert" response of a greasy politician being quizzed by Eddie Mair, so they they don't actually definitively answer the original question, but leave an impression that they have. This very morning I spent a pleasant hour with one of the leading UK academics on the subject of BPO, at which we agreed that BPO rarely delivers, because the SLA's don't do what the client expects, and because of the information imbalance between the negotiators.

Directors the world over still fall for the idea that a job they don't want to manage will somehow be performed better by somebody else, for less money. Presumably these people still believe in unicorns.

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Home Office lost its workers' completed security vetting forms

Ledswinger
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Re: Too Many Errors

To highlight how utterly odious the Home Sec actually is.

Why particularly this one? Because politicians don't get out enough, whenever they arrive at the HO, they believe the rubbish they're inculcated with, about bazillions of bloodcurdling terror threats, and how the world will end unless they cave in to the spooks and the flatfeet. And as a result there's nothing to choose between them once they get their feet under the desk.

I don't think May had a good reputation to start with, but remember Jack Straw? He had a very good reputation for a politician before he became home secretary (i'm no Labour supporter, please note), and then he kicked off RIPA, which was Snoopers Charter 1.0.

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Two-thirds of Android users vulnerable to web history sniff ransomware

Ledswinger
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Building their own coffin

Google's failure to sort out Android security is well known. I can see the practical and commercial reasons for doing nothing for handsets that have been remaindered, and at the moment this malware is in the badlands outside the Play store. But you can see where this is heading.

Unfortunately for Google, their failure to fully secure up even the current version, never mind the billions of older devices means that sooner or later something really nasty is going to make it into the Play store, and all hell will be let loose across millions of phones - be it ransomware, some form of APT or botnet, keylogging/bank spying, or whatever. And when that happens, Apple's cash registers will melt, as a significant proportion of people decide that whilst they don't mind Google spying on them, they simply won't tolerate its slipshod security, and indifference to older handsets.

Personally I don't own any Apple products, and I don't like their obscene profits and limited user control. But I can see the day coming when Android is less a phone OS, and more of a malware deployment system.

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Land Rover Defender dies: Production finally halted by EU rules

Ledswinger
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Trollface

Re: Why are they ending it now?

The emissions laws don't come into force until 2020, and the replacement car is due out in 2018 - so why are they ending production now at the start of 2016?

Here's a clue:

... by today's standards it is also monumentally uncomfortable, slow and unwieldy. It's out-of-date, basically.

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Back to the Future's DeLorean is coming back to the future

Ledswinger
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Re: A couple points ...

Wanders off wondering why (British Govt subsidies perchance?)

$120m in 1978. Say £74m in 1978 prices, so about £330m at 2015 values. Which means the British taxpayer paid a subsidy in today's money of £36k per car completed.

Put another way, 2,500 people were employed for two years, so that's £132k per head in current values, and £66k per employee per year, for jobs that (again in current money) would be about £21k average salary.

Good to see that HM Government has always been consistent in the value for money it offers taxpayers.

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ICO says TalkTalk customers need to get themselves a lawyer

Ledswinger
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Re: WalkWalk

I'm still waiting for a call back with contact details for a UK-based manager that I can talk to - since asking for it in November, though ......

No problem, they are over eight weeks and complaint is not resolved, you can refer your complaint to the Communications Ombudsman, whether W*nkW*nk like it or not:

http://www.ombudsman-services.org/who-can-we-help-communications.html

Simply by taking the complaint up for investigation, W*nkW*nk will be charged a case fee of around £400. They'll probably find in your favour - you won't get much by way of compensation, but you'll have your complaint resolved, and you are not exposed to any risk of paying their costs regardless of the outcome, so hit them where it hurts.

The same organisation (as the Energy Ombudsman) and broadly similar rules applies to energy suppliers, so any unhappy energy customers should do the same. You can complain before the eight weeks, but to do that you have to have what's called a "deadlock letter", where the company admit that you and they cannot agree - getting one of those out of an under-performing company is like getting blood out of a stone.

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Lincolnshire council shuts down all IT after alleged 0-day breach

Ledswinger
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Re: Dissapointed

Holds in the evidence better until you can get to the bathroom.

Why soil the bathroom? Unleash the trousered waste in the garden, and tell anybody who complains that you're part of the crew digging an escape tunnel.

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Ban internet anonymity – says US Homeland Security official

Ledswinger
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Re: Feck Off

We'll have the TSA with their rubber gloves at boarding gates for US bound flights soon.

We most certainly will:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3367396/US-guards-guns-patrol-British-airports-time-controversial-new-plans-discussed-London-Washington.html

Excuse the source, just the first news link to this story that Google chucked up.

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Outage outrage: Banks need clear targets for improving IT systems

Ledswinger
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If one judges by the serial mis-selling scandals, and the need to bail out a large proportion of the banking industry a few scant years ago, the banks could start off by getting some genuine financial expertise into their boardrooms, instead of rent-a-director clowns focused solely on trousering vast bonuses.

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Brit censors endure 10-hour Paint Drying movie epic

Ledswinger
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Re: Too easy

Just to make sure they really verified the whole film.

You don't think that they considered that the main risk? It's not like Charlie Lyne kept his plans secret, and the risk was always that if the fast-forwarded through it they'd miss something hugely embarrassing.

Although equally, if they had a digital copy, they should have been able to get a frame on frame analysis to pick up any differences, check those out, then fast forward through at 50x, and the laugh would be on Lyne and his clown-funding chums.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Brilliant

Can't wait to watch it.

Speak for yourself. I shall hold out for the 3D version because it will be so much more immersive as an experience.

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Five reasons why the Google tax deal is imploding

Ledswinger
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Re: So are they breaking the law or not?

I thought Google's dealings were, while naughty, not technically illegal.

That depends on how you define and treat transfer pricing. Under most international agreements and UK domestic law, transfer pricing to transfer profits across borders is illegal. And that's the problem, HMRC are quite happy to harass SMEs and individual contractors, but they've been curiously uncurious when it comes to investigating Google's trading arrangements, or Starbucks' bean purchasing. Anybody foolish enough to believe Google et al when they maintain that their arrangements are legal and they make little or no profit in the UK needs to ask themselves why these companies report multi-billion dollar UK profits to their shareholders.

If our government were not such a bunch of retards, and HMRC had some talent, they'd have nailed the big corporate tax dodgers, just like the French appear to be doing.

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Uber driver 'pulls handgun' on passenger

Ledswinger
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Re: should have shot him

Blood is hard to clean out of the seats.

The case for red leather is looking better. But better use a softpoint round, because you don't want to put a hole in the upholstery as you deal justice to your passengers.

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Dixons Carphone to shut down 134 shops

Ledswinger
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Re: oh well

one less 'Blot on the High Street' in a good many parts of the country

Which only leaves Greggs, Birthdays, Clinton Cards, Sports Direct, Cash Converters, O2, EE, Vodafone, KFC, Burger King, Game, Ernest Jones, JD Wetherspoon............

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China has a chip to fry with y'all: Wants its own chip smarts and fabs

Ledswinger
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Re: Interesting times

The big difference seems to be that Chinese industry is much more aligned with state policy, which makes sense in their system.

Isn't working out so well for Chinese heavy industry and infrastructure, is it? State bureaucrats picking winners is a recipe for failure, and has been wherever it has been tried, and we're just entering the unravelling phase of China's infrastructure growth plans, where they find that there's no happy ending when you have manufacturing capacity at least double the reliable world demand for coal, cement, steel, shipbuilding, or construction work, all funded by debt they will never repay.

Semiconductors sound a lovely growth idea, but sadly they aren't manpower intensive, nor will they demand the sort of skills of (for example) the 100,000 workers laid off by Longmay Group (a large Chinese coal mining conglomerate) late last year. So seeking to build some national champions in semi fabrication isn't that clever - capital intensive, high risk, low job count, all in a cyclical industry with high fixed costs. It'll play out like the other commodity industries that the party has allowed to build up.

Just as the Soviet Union was bankrupted by economic sclerosis and excessive state directed spending (largely on the military), China is at risk of doing the same, except that the state spending is on state-directed "capitalism".

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Police Scotland will have direct access to disabled parking badge database

Ledswinger
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Re: Also Parent and Child bays

Just looking around, I'd honestly say there are far more parents with kids shopping at these places than disabled folks so it seems an odd imbalance.

Which is part of the problem. Because there's (at many but not all car parks) acres of very poorly utilised disabled parking, it encourages people to conclude that there's neither the need, nor any inconvenience caused by misuse.

Round my way, there's entire floors of unused disabled bays on multi-storey car parks. A little bit of common sense and adjustment might actually bring need and provision closer together, and actually discourage misuse, rather than idiot planners and policy makers dictating what provision should exist.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Why badges?

They should confiscate the vehicles instead and put them into the crusher for repeat offenders.

Seems to me the plods have got the wrong end of the stick. We've all seen people using blue badges when (to all appearances) there's nothing wrong with them at all. Not unreasonable of the police to check that the users are bona fide. BUT...round my way they do little or nothing about misuse of disabled bays by people with no blue badge at all, and that looks to be a far more common occurrence.

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Retailers urged to create 'CCTV-like' symbol to inform customers of mobile tracking

Ledswinger
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Re: "... retailer’s smart phone app. "

SSssshhhhhhh! There's people round here paid money to create those sort of apps - do you want to do some fellow commentard out of a job?

But, in partial answer, Reg readers are hardly the target demographic for these things, are we?

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Kentucky to build 3,400-mile state-owned broadband network – and a fight is brewing

Ledswinger
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Re: Dug their own grave

The cable companies generally have a local monopoly, granted by the local government. They have been very lax about upgrading their services in many areas

That is a failure of regulation, not of capitalism. The company does either what generates a commercial return, or what it is mandated to to do by the regulator to protect its licence. Obviously the marginal cost of rural broadband means it isn't economic, but that's where the state regulator should step in and clearly hasn't.

In the scenario described, the residents of Kentucky are paying for government to regulate the telecom monopolists, but government are failing to achieve what the population want. Up pops another bit of the same state government saying "we could build a network ourselves!". If the state government isn't capable of regulation (which is primarily simple: giving monopolists strategic direction with the force of law to compel them to follow it), then which simple minded people honestly believe that the same government will be able to deliver this mythical state backbone?

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Folk shun UK.gov's 'expensive' subsidised satellite broadband

Ledswinger
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Re: Cross-subsidy

It can only work for broadband if other telcos have to contribute to the USO too.

Well done Sherlock! You articulate a problem by assuming the the cross subsidy would be only for one company, and then present the solution. It wasn't rocket science, now was it?

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Ledswinger
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Re: Cross-subsidy

For example one customer is 12 miles away from the exchange in the highlands

But it is curious that we can afford a national infrastructure for electricity and "damp string" telecoms without the cross subsidies being deemed unduly onerous....

Just playing devils advocate, btw.

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Ledswinger
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Re: £££££££££££

Currently on 1.9Mbps VDSL.

Wow. Can you apply for a reduction in your rates?

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Google and HMRC face Parliamentary grilling over £130m tax deal

Ledswinger
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Re: HMRC and Tax

Why is it the larger the Company earn the less they pay in Tax whereas for people the larger they earn the more they pay in Tax ?

Maybe because big companies can afford to pay expensive tax consultants like Deloitte, who appear to now employ Dave Hartnett? So in addition to giving my money away whilst employed as a the most wined and dined civil servant in Britain, he has retired on a fattest-of-fat-cats civil service gold plated pension, and now he gets (I suspect) some fairly generous compensation for helping more big companies "manage their tax liabilities", even as the rest of us have to pay for his index linked pension. What a cunt.

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'No safe level' booze guidelines? Nonsense, thunder stats profs

Ledswinger
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Re: Governemt "expert committees"

The real mistake was abandoning APT before they had perfected it (it was nearly there).

The Eyeties bought some of the technology and perfected it, and that's what a Virgin Pendolino is. However, the real problem was (for both trains) betting the farm on a technology to avoid straightening out the bends in about four significant locations, when the real barrier to high speed was mainly the signalling (which was known even in the days of the APT).

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BT dismisses MPs' calls to snap off Openreach as 'wrong-headed'

Ledswinger
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I have never understood why successive governments have been allowed to continue selling off our national assets.

Largely because they can't manage these industries themselves, but also because they need the money because they spend more than they raise in taxes. And the current lot are just the same - David Cameron is at heart a champagne socialist, who despite please to the contrary is committed to high levels of public spending, well ahead of the taxes paid.

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Ledswinger
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Re: New Zealand has done it.

Hell, they have even done it with National Rail. Why not BT Openreach?

Well, maybe because Network Rail have proved no better than Railtrack? So we have long delays in rail development schemes (despite the vast public subsidies), Network Rail has five directors earning £800-900k a year, we have project planning that is utterly incompetent, a regulator described as "unfit for purpose" by the Public Accounts Committee:

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/nov/20/network-rail-investment-plan-has-staggering-costs-report-finds

Looks to me like state ownership marginally changes the appointment process for fat cats, without making much difference to their obscene pay packets, nor their performance.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Publicly owned business

Utilities should be publicly owned, run as a business with the government as a silent owner.

I'm not sure where you think the governance of an organisation comes from if the government are somehow a "silent owner". In practice it would be run by the management based on what they think best. Do you really think that if the management of a company are accountable essentially to themselves, that will lead to an efficient and effective, customer focused organisation?

I'd have thought there were more than enough utterly ineffective, unaccountable quangos with obscenely over-paid management to give you an answer. Like, in this case, OFCOM.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Privatisation

The gift that keeps on giving.

There speaks a boy not old enough to remember how expensive voice calls were under state ownership, how it took six months to even get a line installed, and how the state owned operator thought it acceptable to offer only "party lines".

But don't let any inconvenient facts stand in the way of religious belief: Vote for Jezza and we will soon have a Venzuelan style workers' paradise here in the UK.

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Someone please rid me of this turbulent Windows 10 Store

Ledswinger
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Re: What went wrong?

It is probably too late for anyone to take MS seriously any more.

Corporate IT buyers are starting to like Windows phones. And luckily for Microsoft, corporate users rarely have a say, other than a few PHBs who can be individually bought off with an iPhone.

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Samsung sued over 'lackadaisical' Android security updates

Ledswinger
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Move along, nothing to see

Data security is a top priority and we work hard every day to ensure that the devices we sell and the information contained on those devices are is safeguarded

Meaning:

Data security is a top priority and we work hard every day to ensure that the devices we sell on that day and the information contained on those devices are is safeguarded for the whole day. But after that you're on your own.

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Thousands fled TalkTalk after gigantic hack, confirm researchers

Ledswinger
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Re: They are rubbish

My mother in law died 14 months ago and we cancelled her talk-talk phone then. We are still getting bills

Take your complaint to the Communications Ombudsman. They aren't usually quick, but they usually deliver. Not only will they force TwatTwat to sort it out, and probably pay you some desultory compensation, but simply by Ombusdman Services taking the case on, TwatTwat will be charged a circa £400 case fee.

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Women account for just one fifth of the EU’s 8m IT jobs

Ledswinger
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Re: Really?

every single male with two brain cells to rub together I ever talked to was unhappy about the low percentage of females in the tech sector

Ahh, but they weren't unhappy enough to get themselves a job in marketing. Mind you it is IT's loss that there aren't more women, largely because IME women make better managers than men. With a few exceptions, women listen when other people talk, and they pick up the social cues that us blokes steam roller right across.

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The last time Earth was this hot hippos lived in Britain (that’s 130,000 years ago)

Ledswinger
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Re: It's true!

Could we help African wildlife by encouraging poaching of the UK herds of hippopotamus shellsuitus for Chinese medicinal purposes?

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Blighty's Parliament prescribed tablets to cope with future votes

Ledswinger
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In principle the idea is excellent.

It certainly is. Presumably MPs will be able to vote from the common's bar or their mistress' boudoir, without the discomfort of having to actually listen to or participate in the debate.

I did initially think that would be bad for democracy, but on reflection Westminster is stuffed with cretinous party lickspittles, so it won't matter. In which case, why not aggregate up the voting, and let the party whips vote on behalf of their MPs?

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Gov must hire 'thousands' of techies to rescue failing projects

Ledswinger
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Re: Nope

Try hiring a rather smaller number of experienced techies who actually understand what they're doing.

How will they keep at bay the demands of technically and managerially illiterate management who keep on changing things, or trying to release dysfunctional specs to bidders?

In the area of shared services, the IT usually only becomes a problem because the business processes (and the policies that back them) are inadequate, undocumented, inconsistent and not understood by the management, who think that if only they automate more stuff, all their troubles will go away.

Take payroll or expenses. In concept, very, very straightforward to autiomate and share as a service. But if you're doing shared services, that means every customer of the shared service centre has to adopt the same policy and process on these (otherwise you're running duplicate systems, and they aren't shared at all). The policies and processes need to be understood by customer-staff and the "doers", and they need to be clearly written down - who does what by when, who is accountable and responsible. And really, the existing processes need to have proper MI so that the current performance is understood, and they need to generally work because automation won't fix a broken process (I think that's the nub of government's, and to an extent wider business's problems).

So yes, more and better techies by all means. But just as important to enable the techies to deliver are more and better process designers, MI specialists, and management who actually have experience of creating and running a successful shared service centre.

I'm not holding my breath.

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Sorry, kids. Microsoft is turning Minecraft into an 'educational tool'

Ledswinger
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Re: Hmmm... Call me a cynic.

So that school have to have windows 10...........When schools can't afford jack because of govt cuts.

In which case MS have two options: Either accept that World plus Dog really couldn't give a tinker's cuss about the abomination that is Windows 10, and that a W10-tied educational Minecraft will curl up and die. Or give away both free to academic institutions, as a necessary freebie to keep as many people as possible in the Windows fold.

If MS won't give it away, and the schools don't have the money, then maybe they have a choice: Stick with whatever they run now, or make a move to Ubuntu or similar. If you can drive a mouse you can drive a Windows computer, so being brought up on Linux wouldn't be any hardship. And as an employer, my business doesn't expect schools to have equipped pupils with any worthwhile knowledge of business software, so if the kids leave school familiar with Open Office and Mint that's not going to worry me at all.

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Pentagon fastens lasers to military drones to zap missiles out of the skies

Ledswinger
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Oops... shouldn't give them ideas.

Don't worry. A blimp would be cheap and therefore there's no chance of them thinking about that for a nanosecond.

All the high tech defence programmes like rail guns and space planes, and this latest incarnation of the death-laser, none are about cheap or effective, it's just the military industrial complex spending taxpayer's money on techno-junk, because that's the central purpose.

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Spare a reserved cloud instance, gov? Microsoft's $1bn, 70k charity sales pitch

Ledswinger
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And after three years....

...any large scale, professionally run charity able to make use of cloud, BI and CRM finds it is almost totally dependent upon Microsoft, there's probably no other comparable free services (and even if there were, switching provider is a bit IT project with a big cost that will come out of donations). Oh dear, how sad, charity donations going straight into Microsoft's coffers.

Microsoft aren't poor. They've got circa $100bn in cash and no debt. They could afford a more targeted offer to selected large charities on a much longer term basis, giving stability to the charity, and confidence that the benefits over the agreement's life will outweigh the possible exit or re-source costs. As they're not doing that, I tend to go back to the cynical interpretation, that this is a form of entrapment. Not unlike most IT outsource and BPO pitches, then.

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Microsoft: We’ve taken down the botnets. Europol: Would Sir like a kill switch, too?

Ledswinger
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The downside is that it doesn't deal with the laptop on the coffee-shop WiFi.

True, but the spamming and botnet businesses are all about volume. If you can reduce the number of machines infected significantly then the returns are reduced. This would get rid of the skiddy spammers and made big inroads in the DDoS "market", and vulnerable devices on public wifi would be too small in number to make those markets viable.

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Ledswinger
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however there is a lot of ignorance in businesses PCs - 'it's someone elses responsibility so i'm not touching it'

In every business I've worked in, it is a formal policy that everything to do with desktop is under the control of the IT people. And even within IT, there's a RACI matrix that says who does what. So (assuming large corporate IT departments are not utterly incompetent?) your observations puts the blame on spam and botnets (most likely) at the door of the vast estate of partially managed SME PCs?

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BT appoints new CIO Howard Watson

Ledswinger
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Re: worse? No problem...

The mind boggles at just how badly it'll go....

Luckily BT have lots of offshore "resource" to help them get a good solution. Bwahahahahahahahaaa!

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Nude tribute to Manet's Olympia ends in cuffing

Ledswinger
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I wonder if there's a sign up list.

Hey! You! Sexist old dinosaur! Get behind me in this queue.

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Robots. Machine learnin', 3D-printin' AI robots: They'll take our jobs – Davos

Ledswinger
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It's going to be just too useful for us not to develop it

And thus the Fermi Paradox is perpetuated on another planet.

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GCHQ summer schools to pay teenage hackers £250 a week

Ledswinger
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Bring your own holdall

And a "whodunnit" novel as a case study.

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Vendors reporting their cloud revenue with funny money

Ledswinger
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Re: suggests asking the following questions

For all anyone knows, most of these companies might be hosting their solutions on other company's kit.

To an extent that's barely more or less a problem than having legal ownership of the kit. What counts is whether the company (or nested hosting companies) have a genuinely viable business model.

There's some interesting analysis kicking about the web that reports that half of all AWS phenomenal growth is seriously VC funded startups with no real revenue. And there's quite a few revenue-free tech sector IPO's active in the cloud marketplace - you know of whom I speak. My guess is that the cloud market has already built out to saturation, large segments of demand will evaporate soon as many of the startups implode, or IPOs have to cut their cloth according to their means. What we'll see could well be a re-run of the 2000 telecoms implosion, as cloud providers find that they have little pricing power in a commodity market, and that too much of their costs are essentially fixed as demand declines.

There will certainly be survivors, but its interesting to note that the casualties last time round included obvious companies like Qwest and Global Crossing (at the time with valuations like Amazon today), but it wasn't just the telecoms owner-operators who suffered, but also their supply chain like Nortel and Lucent. When the cloud market implodes, which bit barn & comms equipment suppliers will take a major hit?

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IBM introduces fleecing-you-as-a-service for retailers

Ledswinger
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In the past, Amazon would offer the best price to new customers, and somewhat worse pricing once you were a regular customer.

Not just Amazon. Hotels do this all the time, but often very crudely, so that if you make multiple visits to their web site they'll hike the price offered to you, so you've triggered the dynamic price hike, not total demand. Luckily because its crude you can usually book using a different browser on the same machine, or use a different machine.

I suspect that offering retailers the prospect of "free money", dynamic pricing will become ever more frequent, until it becomes so abusive that regulators intervene. Particularly if you start setting your new price base purely on competitors pricing, then that could easily be seen as collusion, leading to vast fines. In some sectors where supply is fixed in the short term, it has been used for years and will always be used (like air travel and hotels). But I'll wager that dynamic pricing of commodity retailing will be accused of somehow being socially exclusive, and it'll become more and more difficult to sustain. Once the mainstream press get hold of it, it'll become a bone to gnaw on, and those choosing to use it will need to consider if the additional margin is worth the reputational grief.

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Forget the drones, Amazon preps its own cargo container ship operation out of China

Ledswinger
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Especially as the EU is trying to close down the Luxemburg tax avoidance schemes.

Bwahahahaa! You think that's going to happen when one the architects of Luxembourg's tax haven structures (Jean Claude Junker) is president of the European Commission? They've already been omitted from the big list of EU blacklisted tax havens, presumably by some "bureaucratic oversight".

The EU: Committed to transparency, openness, fairness. Except when it isn't because it doesn't suit the toe rag politcos that pull the strings

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Ledswinger
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Re: Shipping sans sailors

Just think: Amazon technology can launch huge container ships running like driver-less cars, with GPS guidance....

Where did it say anything about Amazon owning or operating ships? The headline is wilfully misleading (on a free to view website we can't complain), but the article talks about Amazon acting as a shipper, a freight forwarder and controlling vessels. You don't need to leave your desk to do any of that. Which makes sense. Why would a retail and logistics company want to get into ownership and operation of container vessels, when all seaborne transport is heavily cyclical, routinely sees ship owners going bust, and in the longer term makes very thin margins?

Amazon's logistical expertise will be light years ahead of the tuppenny halfpenny shipping agents used by Chinese manufacturers, and by better control of freight despatch, consolidation & forwarding, it can move the China-US freight network closer to a just in time operation, and take out other inefficiency costs in the movement of ships. And it could use its volume on trans pacific trade to put the squeeze on other retailers.

All of which is good for Amazon. I suspect the company rather than consumers will benefit, I'm not convinced that competition will improve, and how the US nationally will benefit importing stuff from China even faster is even less clear. Last year the US imported about $350 billion more from China than China imported from the US.

I'm sure it all end well....

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Eight-billion-dollar Irish tax bill looms over Apple

Ledswinger
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Re: Apple would love Siesta

There is no point manufacturing in countries with siesta...

The only "manufacturing" done by Apple in relation to Ireland was the manufacturing of a complex multi-jurisdiction tax avoidance scheme.

And I'll wager that was probably manufactured by law firms and tax accountants in the City of London.

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