* Posts by Ledswinger

3574 posts • joined 1 Jun 2012

Hold the front page: Spain's anti-Google lobbyists lobby for Google News return

Ledswinger
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Re: ROFLMAO

"Publishers can't opt out, because opting out would mean that a Spanish QANGO called CEDRO wouldn't make any money."

Wow. The Spanish lobbyists, politicians and civil servants have cooked up a corker here. With intellects like this running the place you can understand why the country's near bankrupt and has recently celebrated an unemployment rate of one in four (because that's a three year low).

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Ofcom's new broom Sharon White sweeps into office

Ledswinger
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Re: I think we should be told.

In this case it's more like a fortune cookie:

"You will inherit obscenely well paid new job, no responsibility!"

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Ledswinger
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Re: I'm glad she's an economist...

She's also a career civil servant, who as far as I can tell has never worked in the private sector.

And she's part of that clique of intellectual titans that wrote and believe the "business cases" for such misguided nonsense like HS2 or smart meters.

I'd say she'll fit right in at the shambolic, ineffectual mess that is OFCOM.

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Amazon workers in Germany stage CHRISTMAS STRIKE

Ledswinger
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Re: Frequently-revolting staff stomp off for three days

"Mail-order companies are traditionally treated as retail in Germany."

Whilst it seems daft that the state sets these different rules for different sectors, if that's the local model then Amazon should go along with it.

Of course, if Amazon have their hand forced on this, they are unlikely to take it lying down, so it should be interesting to see if Verdi are happy with whatever unintended consequences there will be from this if it concludes in Verdi's favour. Get the popcorn, draw up a chair.

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BT to gobble EE for £12.5bn – BTEE phone home

Ledswinger
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"I don't want "synergies","

Then you're in luck, because there won't be any, and the actual impact is that BT have to recover more costs.

All those deal fees, legal costs, restructuring costs, and a particularly big and fat acquisition premium are going to create a huge slug of "goodwill" on the balance sheet that needs to be amortised away. The only way that will happen will be either for BT to take lower profits on EE than the current owners (which isn't going to happen), or for BT to increase the average revenue per user and the average margin per user to EE customers. That's what happened every time the UK cable companies got traded.

The BT fat cats can dress it up all they want, but there's a harsh reality to this sort of deal: Customer's get screwed while The City enjoy big bonuses.

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Ledswinger
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" A near monopoly broadband/landlind provider in the UK, will own a major mobile provider."

If OFCOM were competent they'd require the new BT to demerge Openreach. Shareholders would still own both operations, so no loss to them, and they could elect to keep or sell either BT's service business or the Openreach monopoly according to their investment objectives.

Unfortunately we all know OFCOM couldn't find their own arse with both hands. FFS, they don't even require BT to have separate statutory accounts for Openreach, which is virtually unheard of in regulating asset based businesses.

So expect this deal to be rubber stamped.

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UK banks ill-prepared for return of the rabid POODLE

Ledswinger
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A solution for Richard G

RBS turning out to be technically inept? Surely not.

But instead of trying to do their job for them (when they clearly don't care), why not use the fast account switching service to somebody who is less bad on security? If you know enough to make that a reason for moving, you'll have a view on who you might trust?

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Independent inquiry into British air-traffic-control IT nightmare

Ledswinger
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Re: Vince Cable

Indeed. In Vince's pea brain, old is obviously bad per se.

But to give the man credit, this would appear to be an evidence based approach if he's come to this view after considering that he himself is ancient, and has been utterly useless in government.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Stick with the dancing job!

"Thank God isn't as lame as politicians commenting on an unfortunate but hardly catastrophic event. Delays? Don't they ever use the M25?"

The senior ones rarely travel anywhere other than in a convoy of blue flashing lights, using bus lanes and hard shoulders if the hoi polloi can't or won't get out of their way. Delays are things for little people. Remember when the berk Cameron when on holiday and forgot his passport? Luckily more blue flashing lights were deployed to ensure the git was able to go on holiday. I'll wager they won't be doing that for you or me.

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Deprivation Britain: 1930s all over again? Codswallop!

Ledswinger
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Re: hay man@ Tim Worstal

"The difference is that consumption is what the government spends on stuff, public spending is what it spends on stuff plus all the redistribution that is done through the welfare state."

Don't forget arm-twisting expense on private companies that funnily enough doesn't appears as public spending - like the £1.5 bn a year that energy companies have to add to energy bills, and then spend in ways mandated by government. And there's plenty of other forms of obligated expense where government are addicted to spending other people's money.

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Ledswinger
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"Families living in poverty can have as little as £12 per day per person to buy everything they need such as food, heating, toys, clothes, electricity and transport."

FX: <sound of violin playing sad, sad music>

Taking that at face value, it would seem that after sixty years or so the welfare state has failed most miserably, wouldn't you agree? Which seems rather odd when they have had to introduce new rules to limit the maximum "benefits" to something around £35k untaxed cash a year.

It also seems odd that so many people are "living in poverty" when half of eastern Europe, a goodly chunk of southern Europe, and hundreds of thousands of people from the Middle East and Africa are busting a bollock to get here for the opportunities.

Perhaps, OtherHobbes, you could give us a diagnosis of this problem?

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REVEALED: Titsup flight plan mainframe borks UK air traffic control

Ledswinger
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Re: Bad flight plan?

"Are they saying this was user error which brought the whole thing to its knees?"

No. Bad data is not "a user error", it is to be expected. If NATS' IT bods can't do input validation they shouldn't be allowed anywhere near a computer. I was writing code for dual-redundant systems with failover thirty years ago, and it was a given that all user data entered would be validated by the code.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Properly engineered systems!

"Rather surprised a bad flight plan can cause problems though."

That does smell of totally inadequate software testing somewhere along the line, doesn't it? Which is sadly not unusual, given the software testing is boring, unglamorous and rarely given adequate resources.

But this is one of NATS primary systems, and NATS is a billion pound a year business, it seems inexcusable that user input can bork it.

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The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Thin plot, great CGI effects

Ledswinger
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Re: one film edit

Maybe the producer could head this off by release a premium priced edit on a single DVD, with a corner flash declaring "Includes bonus: Less footage", or just "The film it should always have been"

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Denmark BANNED from viewing UK furniture website in copyright spat

Ledswinger
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Re: Juristiction?

Does a Danish court have any authority over a British website?

Might as well do. Time was when we actually could say "You and whose army?"

But successive Right Cunts in Westminster (Cameron, Brown, Blair, I'm looking at you) have ensured that this expression no longer works. Not only are all the main UK political parties utterly servile to the wishes of Europe, but we don't even now have any worthwhile military because of a series of "strategic defence reviews". Which makes that arsehole Cameron's posturing over Ukraine particularly amusing.

I'm looking forward to a G8 meeting at which Putin gives Cameron a wedgie.

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US Navy's LASER CANNON WARSHIP: USS Ponce sent to Gulf

Ledswinger
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"Polished metal mirrors are not perfectly reflective, at least not at all wavelengths."

No, but I wonder what would happen with a glass light pipe or fibre optic type of defence, or even a coating of simple glass spheres? I'd be VERY interested to see the videos of trials of this weapon system against this sort of materials. Even simple reflective chaff would seem likely to risk eye damage to anybody unfortunate enough to be looking towards the target in the fraction of a second before it burns through.

I'd accept that you'd still take out the target, but the countermeasures could already have been effective in "sharing" the damage. We're already using $1m missiles to take out Toyota pick ups in Syria and Iraq. Perhaps the price of blowing up an Iranian gunboat will be blinding a couple of unlucky US fast jet pilots and a handful of seamen? Glass spheres or prisms could have a very interesting effect:

"Ensign!"

"SIr, yesir!"

"Target that Palantir"

"Errr...is that wise sir?"

"Just do it"

"Yessir!

"Oh bugger"

It is worth bearing in mind that various middle east nations have shown themselves adept at asymmetric warfare, countering technologically advanced forces with simple, cheap techniques. If the US picks yet another fight with the locals the results could be interesting if this thing is around.

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Ledswinger
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"On seeing it, the Scots surrendered and came out, but Edward refused their surrender and sent them all back inside just so he could try out his new toy."

A man after my own heart.

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UK.gov STILL won't pop a cap on stolen mobile bills

Ledswinger
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Re: Proceeds of crime

" It is not legal to profit from crime, yet the phone companies are doing exactly that."

No different to the payment card companies taking payment for goods and services promoted by spammers. There's another big industry profiting from crime, and strangely enough bunglement sit on their fat behinds doing nothing.

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The future looks bright: Prepare to be dazzled by HDR telly tech

Ledswinger
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"The article says that the average is not much different from current levels."

The whole point of the Eurotards "product policy" is to reduce power consumption versus current levels, because they've belatedly realised their crackpot, Greenpeace approved energy polcy means there's a danger of running out of juice.

Having said that, the chaps over at Cree have LED's running at three times the light/power ratio of current production LEDs, so I'd guess that there is some hope that the twerps of Strasbourg won't be able to completely stop the march of technology, despite their ambitions to do so.

But, but, but......all this lovely quality on the image side doesn't seem to be matched by either volume or quality on the content side, and there's also the problem of bandwidth I can't see OFCOM's vision of IPTV delivering HDR 4K telly in our lifetimes, and the fuckwits propose to hand over all broadcast spectrum to the mobile networks so that people can watch cat videos on small screens on their way to work.

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No more free Windows... and now it’s all about the services

Ledswinger
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Re: Windows in kit form?

"That is what the Indian CEO genius was able to think of ... worse than Ballmer."

No, it's a Ballmer idea through and through.

When Microsoft fucked up with Vista, they eventually released a fairly bug free version called "Windows 7". But any suckers who had Vista had to pay again to have fault-fixed version. Having looked at their accounts and noticed no financial harm from pissing off customers with this plan, they now declare they intend to repeat it. Windows 8 was a botch, 8.1 was a botch, and 8.1 Update was a botch. Throughout they refused to listen to customers. But, when they release a "fixed" version of 8, (the erstwhile Windows 10), all the suckers with W8 will be expected to shell out all over again.

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The Great Unwatched: BBC hails glorious digital future for Three

Ledswinger
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Re: Under the banner of digital, the middle class marches on.®

"But still, Wolfie, sock it to the suits. Just remember to pick up socialist worker on the way home."

You should have heard the hard time that Radio 4's "Meeja Show" gave to the BBC spokesman this evening over the supposedly vile and unjustified casting out of BBC3. If ever anybody wanted proof of the "right on" 1980s institutional bias of the Beeb, all they need to do is hunt down the podcast or iPlayer coverage of the show.

End the telly tax, and make the Tristrams pay their way with adverts.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Under the banner of digital, the middle class marches on.®

"<-------------- Michael grabbing one of his jackets"

Michael grabbing one of his jackets-------------->

FTFY. How long ago did they swap the icons from left to right?

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Uber? Worth $40 BEEELLION? Hey, actually, hold on ...

Ledswinger
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Re: problem...

"Impound the illegal taxi."

Here in my neck of the woods (of Blighty) such an approach would (and occasionally does) result in near shut down of the officially licensed taxi service, because for some mysterious reasons the licensed taxis are "shared" by multiple drivers all working less than twelve hours a week (so as not to affect their "benefits") and the majority of the cars are therefore used by everybody, maintained by nobody.

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Ledswinger
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Re: "The first being that it's their money to waste" - are you sure?

"What I do not like are investor that borrows money, or lure banks and the like to back their very risky and often absurd investments"

I find even more troubling the extent to which Too Big To Fail (and even previously bailed out banks) are busy with their own private equity arms, which are simply using bail out money, central bank QE, and public guarantees to underwrite their own direct gambling in the private equity space, in much the same way that these same banks engage in proprietary trading that privatises the gains whilst socialising any major losses.

Of course, if the investments in Uber, European property, or tulips goes bad, then the Fed, BoE or ECB will take the now worthless "collateral" and hand out a big wadge of fresh cash to the idiots to waste on something new.

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Confused about 5G? So are we, say carriers

Ledswinger
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Re: 3G anyone?

"I was hoping that some good would come from PM Cameron finding out that his mobile was practically useless in the South West."

You are an incorrigible optimist. The problem with your Cameron-logic is that the man's a fucking simpleton, a home counties blue blood inbred. He wouldn't know how to turn a phone on, never mind answer it. And therefore if it doesn't ring (for a flunky to answer on his behalf), it must simply mean that nothing urgent has happened, rather than that it isn't working.

Or maybe at Eton they teach all students to avoid mobile phones and mobile phone coverage. That served fellow old boy bin Laden well for at least ten years. Do you think the USN Seals could be persuaded to renact their raid against Britain's current old-Etonian public enemy number 1?

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Ledswinger
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Re: five nines@ Cliff

"It's also a handy shortcut to knowing a project is poorly defined and doomed to failure."

You're on form today, sir!

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Ledswinger
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"Or is, (as i expect is the case) the whole 5g thing just marketing bollocks to squeeze more money from us mugs?"

You and I know the answer already. For reasons of simple economics, geographic coverage will be about the same as the current network. Ditto, the actual 5G versus 4G and other legacy standards (that despite plans to the contrary will probably not be turned off and networks upgraded). Expect crap like 2G, half data rate connections and intermittent connections for the next fifty odd years at least. At least the much delayed and over budget HS2 will eventually run to the same soundtrack as the trains of today: "Hello! HELLO! I'm on the train. I SAID I'M ON THE TRAIN. Look, can't hear you, I'LL CALL YOU BACK LATER".

All the "investment" in 5G will be EE's Kevin Bacon's fees, O2's Sean Bean soundalike fees, and marketing expense (but if you call it "brand" you can capitalise it).

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DoJ's extra-territorial data demands: now Ireland is baulking

Ledswinger
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Re: "...never again lay a foot out of the USA without fear of being arrested..."

"I can only admire from afar those nations which face up to their moral failures with a modicum of honesty and resolve."

Well that'll be a bloody short list, won't it?

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Ledswinger
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" and MS Ireland could also be prosecuted and the executives could face prison"

And how likely is that? US globo-corps aren't tied to Ireland by anything other than cheap and accommodating tax arrangements. Ireland needs their money and their jobs far more than they need Ireland.

On the other hand the Franco-German axis of Europe would be delighted to see the Irish starve as punishment for their low tax rates and lack of alignment with the European statist model. Moreover some ghastly little nobody (by the name of Juncker) set up an alternative tax haven a few years back in Luxembourg. I'm sure the new president of the European Commission would look favourably on tax dodgers moving to that country.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Surprisingly Late To The Party?

"To be fair, we taught them how to do it, and then the US used WW2 to dismantle the British sphere of influence and acquire its assets. "

But we taught them well, and they bone-headedly replicated the lessons in full. As a result they've then crammed three hundred years of British style empire building, hubris, over-reach, followed by debt-addled decline into just seventy.

And just as the last gasp of the British Empire was in the sands of Egypt, Iraq, Aden, and Iran, well..............

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Put me through to Buffy's room, please. Sony hackers leak stars' numbers, travel aliases

Ledswinger
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Re: Just wondering

"You should see the the looks of disappointment when I turn up."

Imagine the ear to ear grins if SMG starts to turn up places after booking in as "Evil Graham". Yin and Yang, balance of the universe, and all that!

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Satyam Computing Services founder jailed over $1.4 BILLION fraud

Ledswinger
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Re: Crims today - no forward thinking.

The Satyam tale of woe was not that the head honcho defrauded the company of $1.4bn to his own benefit, but that the board deliberately mis-stated the financial results one quarter to meet earnings expectations. Unfortunately, as various others (Worldcom, Enron and many others) have found, the starting assumption of the board is always wrong: "we'll pay it back in next quarter's results, and nobody will be any the wiser", and then they found themselves missing next quarters expectations and making up some extra sales to fill in that hole. Each time they did it, it became exponentially more difficult that they could ever set the books right, and so it went on until the wheels fell off.

This is because if you were 5% down in the first quarter and "bring forward" some sales to make target, then not only do you need to make higher growth expectations next quarter (both because investors believe you're already growing faster than you are, and also their starting baseline assumption is now too high) but you've got to recover that 5% you borrowed as well. As soon as you start on this road you're doomed. Remember this guy's quote about managing expectations (after he was caught) "it was like riding a tiger, we just didn't know how to get off".

So he made a few million dollars in bonuses and salary, with perhaps as little as $1-5m actually his personal benefit from the fraud compared to the slightly reduced bonus he'd have made playing a straight bat. The $1.4bn was the implied lost value to shareholders because any buyer of a company that has suffered accounting fraud will never pay fair value because they don't know what they're buying.

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97% of UK gets 'basic' 2Mbps broadband. 'Typical households' need 10Mbps – Ofcom

Ledswinger
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@skipper409

"All these services are necessary to have a modern home life, so the Government needs to get off its collective backside & provide it, or force the utilities to invest"

No these services are not "necessary" to have a modern life, they are nice to have. If you can't stream HD grumble or ten concurrent cat videos then your quality of life won't be harmed. Your mobile service is about the same as I enjoy living in a large town, and I find that my quality of life is not unduly ruined. Septic tanks in my experience are not much more expensive than water company charges (and you shouldn't by the sound of it be paying the "surface water drainage charges" that most urban dwellers cannot avoid). And if there's no gas grid, you've got a range of alternatives including oil, coal, propane, wood/biomass, or even a heat pump (the last two attract fat government subsidies).

If you want the services available in a town, maybe YOU have to get off YOUR backside, and move somewhere these services can be provided economically, instead of demanding that the rest of us subsidise your choice of career and home. OR you can continue to enjoy the many benefits of rural living (and possibly working) and accept that the cost of that is limited provision of infrastructure and slightly higher cost of living.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Typical households need 10Mbps

"Scotland has generous grants to rural areas"

Good to see that the Scots government was flush for cash before the promises to throw even more money over the border if the Scots would vote "no".

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Ledswinger
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Re: very misleading headline.

" just because I don't want to pay a small fortune for 120Mbps cable"

Well I've just renewed my VM contract for 100 Mbps cable at around £25 a month (excluding my phone and extras). That may be a small fortune to you, but I think its reasonable value.

Total monthly bill is around £40, including phone line, broadband, unlimited geographic calls (incl daytime) and "discount" tariff for mobile calls.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Typical households need 10Mbps

"I'm sure there were arguing the same when they built 3-lane motorways."

They most certainly were. I recall one of the public consultation meeting prior to construction of the north west quadrant from Maple Cross to the M1. My father had a very heated discussion with some DfT flunkies, who insisted that the data really didn't justify building even three lanes, but they were being generous providing three. The DfT also couldn't see the logic of building a tunnel under Leavesden Airfield. That would have cut two miles off the route, and the fuel savings would have balanced the books in around 18 months IIRC, but as usual, government's poor solution had been pre-selected, and the consultation was a sham.

Now the successors to those DfT knobs are doing the same thing in reverse with HS2, of making up the traffic numbers, raising the fictitious traffic numbers to the power of imaginary benefits, all to justify something which isn't needed.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Typical households need 10Mbps

"sewage wasn't available to all,"

No, sewerage wasn't available to all. Sewage, on the other hand, has always been available free of charge and regardless of income, on a SIY basis.

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'I don't NEED to pay' to watch football, thunders EU digi-czar

Ledswinger
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Re: Good luck on that one.@ Mister Justin

"Oh, this old canard. Isn't this what every "individualist" complains about wrt taxes? "

This is called a straw man, and is a popular argument of the hard of thinking.

The rights do not belong to government to assign, because they aren't paying for the industry. It's paid for by sponsors and advertisers, and to a lesser extent fans. It is owned (often) by foreign oligarchs, and it's their collective choice as to who they sell the rights to. Geolocation blocking is a legitimate way of maximising the property rights of the owners, in exactly the same way that luxury goods makers are legally allowed to block grey imports. I'm particularly impressed at your bizarre logic that says "if there is a tax on a good, you should have access to it regardless of your location". What are you smoking?

You might not like the outcome, but you must be particularly stupid if you think that it is the place of government to demand that you have access to FTA premier league football.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Good luck on that one.

"It's a bloody outrageous situation which NEVER should have been permitted to happen."

Why not? I don't want to pay for sport that I don't watch, so I'm quite happy that it is available to you via subscription services. I'd be equally happy if it was Free To Air on one of the commercial channels, but as it isn't that presumably reflects the fact that the effective PAYG advertising revenues on terrestrial FTA broadcasts aren't sufficient to match the sports industry's costs.

The low levels of government funding for sport hardly put it in a position to mandate that the sports industry should either give its content away for free, nor do the levels of interest justify adding the bill to the telly-tax and then force-feeding the content to all and sundry.

You want it, you pay for it. And ideally we'd have a similar approach to BBC shit like Antiques Roadshow and Songs of Praise.

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Buy Your Own Device: No more shiny-shiny work mobe for you

Ledswinger
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Re: Take your number when you leave.

" I'm not sure of the full details, but something about the network charging GBP150 to allow this - it's not like the number was in the middle of a block of numbers matching our DDI or something."

It's typically a small print stitch up by the telco's SLA team and the company's dim procurement team. In return for (supposedly, hahahahaha!) favourable rates on all the business critical stuff the company's IT and procurement guys can remember to list, everything else falls into a very expensive bucket labelled "non standard requests" (NSR), for which the telco (or ITO if its a bundled deal) can shaft the company for whatever it dares ask.

In my company's case the thieves at T-Mobile demand the fat end of £600 for each and every NSR, plus all additional direct costs of the request. That £600 applies to NSR like porting a single mobile number from the company contract via a PAC code (which for a retail customer they'd have to do for free). This NSR is in addition to a deemed two year minimum use period for all company phones, so if the employee leaves after a year the company has to pay around £180 for early "termination".

Arguably it is weak procurement by the company that is as much at fault as the greed of the telco, but neither justify £600 plus costs.

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Ledswinger
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"What utterly useless advice. Four fingers of kit kat are much more similar in shape and size to a modern mobile phone"

But those who refuse to carry a mobile in the first place will be far more at home with a Nokia-style candy bar format than an iPhone-esque Kit Kat.

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Ledswinger
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"I don't even own a phone to bring into work."

You needn't miss out on 99% of the fun and utility of a mobile phone: Buy a Mars bar, and when on the train periodically get it out, hold it to your ear and shout "I'm on the train, I'll call you back".

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Ledswinger
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Re: Not so sure about this one

"Have a look at "Touchdown" if you're using Android."

I regularly have a look at it, as it is installed on my works phone, and from my perspective its a pile of rank, steaming shit.

Any employer who thinks they're installing that sort of crap on my personal device is badly mistaken. If a business mobile is a necessity, they provide it. I'm not spending my hard earned to save them a handful of shekels.

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EU law bods: New eCall crash system WON'T TRACK YOU. Really

Ledswinger
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Re: Free?

"That's goverment-speak for "paid for by all citizens, whether they use it or not""

Isn't that also the definition of the "public services" that politicians dribble on about all the time?

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Ledswinger
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Re: To be fair

"if they require that the hardware only gathers location data once it is triggered, then it can't be used for tracking/recording. Will this be the case?"

Might be initially. But you have to consider that already 2% of new car registrations are pure electric vehicles or hybrids. That's comfortably ahead of DfT projections from last year, and despite high purchase costs and a fairly poor choice of vehicles. As better, cheaper cars come to market we can expect the takeup to increase. Initially the bunglers of government can simply up the tax on ICE vehicles to compensate for the loss of fuel duty, but that stops working well fairly quickly as the market share of EVs rises.

All of which point inexorably to road pricing as an inevitable government "solution". I'm sure some people won't mind the continuous tracking and record keeping by government (1), nor being charged more to use roads at certain times of day (roads we've already paid for), but can you now see what location tracking will be used for in practice? And the really great thing is this: Road pricing and universal tracking will be justified on the alters of two of the really important things government keep us safe from: Climate Change (tm) and Global Terrorist (tm).

(1) I know that ACPO currently have their own national ANPR system, but this is fairly basic and only covers trunk routes and a few key points

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A nation of CODERS? Yes, says UK.gov, and have some cash to do it

Ledswinger
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Re: is it not easier@Flatpackhamster

"To teach in Finland requires a Masters' degree"

And what of it? I've got a master's degree (like plenty of others round here) but that says nothing about my suitability to educate kids.

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Ledswinger
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Re: is it not easier

"Still think they are limiting themselves too much by sticking to 1st class degrees."

Typical government nonsense anyway. The real talent in teaching anything is not the difference between a 1st, a 2:1, a 2:2, or even non-honours. That merely measures a combination of aptitude, talent, application at degree level in the subject.

Teaching anything well is a surprisingly rare talent that is almost completely divorced from somebody's tertiary level achievement. I know people with doctorates that couldn't teach either their own research specialism well, nor even how to tie shoelaces. That doesn't devalue their doctorates, merely states the obvious that academic brilliance is the not the same as teaching ability.

Conversely a friend of mine is the head of subject (and of IT) at a school that is second in its county league tables, with 98% 5+ GCSE A*-C grades. He scraped a non-honours degree from a sub-university institution - apparently he's persona non grata in Shiney Faced Dave's brave new world of teaching.

So as usual, UK government waste my cash on rubbish that doesn't need doing (particularly so after encouraging big corporates to offshore the coding for the past two or three decades).

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Post Office: Here's £100m, Computacenter. Now get us up to date, for pity's sake

Ledswinger
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Re: POP!!!!!

"Mind you they'll be able to claw it back over the next few weeks by slicing open the Christmas cards and nicking the cash ment for our younger relations"

Naaahh. That's the staff that do that. The Post Office claw it back legally, by charging almost eleven fucking shillings to maybe deliver a letter two or three days later.

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MP caught playing Candy Crush at committee meeting: I'll ‘try’ not to do it again

Ledswinger
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Re: Actions speak loader than words

"being relieved that at least while he's wasting his days playing inconsequential little games, he's not doing what most politicians do: devising bad laws that neither achieve their intended purpose nor are tight enough to stop their loopholes being exploited"

Actually I think that this is incorrect. Most laws (including the myriad bad ones) are actually drafted (and therefore devised) by government departments - and thus by unelected civil servants. The politicians set a vague strategy, argue over a handful of key points, but then let the civil servants draft some turgid, overly complex rules in hundreds if not thousands of pages of legalistic claptrap, and then the pols rubber stamp it without reading or understanding it. That's why (for example) tax law runs to thousands of pages of impenetrable nonsense, and global multinationals can drive a cart and horses through the loopholes. Or another example is the 2006 Companies Act, around 700 pages, which was passed with no MPs admitting to knowing even the full scope of the act, never mind the detailed contents.

Whilst the evidence rather suggests that civil servants and politicians interact to ensure the worst possible outcome, what our Candy Crush playing friend should have been doing is paying attention so that whatever came out of the committee was at least relevant, and in particular trying to stop bad stuff becoming law without proper oversight. If ever a group collectively suffered from ADHD then it is the occupants of the palace of Westminster.

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Competition probe opens door to Canal+ Spain for Rupert Murdoch

Ledswinger
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Re: Turdoch

I must admit it is a disappointment to wakeup each day and not read his obituary. But even then his ghastly offspring need to be ethnically cleansed from the world of media before the likes of Sky will become a company I'd do business with.

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