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* Posts by Stuart Grout

10 posts • joined 6 Jun 2012

BBC Trust candidate defends licence fee, says evaders are CRIMINALS

Stuart Grout

Streaming is a better & cheaper alternative

I gave up on broadcast TV years ago and apart from a few quite friendly visits from their investigation people it's been no bother. When they knocked on the door they were quite surprised when I just invited them in and showed them around. They haven't been back since.

Now I subscribe to Netflix for around £70 a year and could subscribe to Amazon Prime for a similar amount at the same time. This would give a better range of film and video than you ever get from the BBC for comparable costs.

I can't say I miss the BBC in the slightest as I very rarely even bother with the iPlayer.

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Tesla, Nissan, BMW mull all-for-plug, plug-for-all electrocar charger plan

Stuart Grout

Petrol station analogy?

I thought the idea of electric cars was to charge them when they are parked up, either overnight night at home or in car parks. Certainly the charging stations around my city (Manchester UK) fit this model.

I can see some benefit in battery swapping stations for people travelling longer distances between cities etc but would think most users of electric cars would be driving around the city or doing short commutes, relying on a single battery.

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F-16 fighter converted to drone

Stuart Grout

Manned fighter aircraft were clearly the most effective weapons platform for the past 40+ years and are likely to be the most effective of the next decade. Beyond that their cost effectiveness is in doubt.

The USA and to a lesser extent Russia have clear dominance over any likely enemy when it comes to air power. However if we learn the lessons of history we can see that other countries are looking at ways of nullifying this advantage.

In the same way that air power made Battleships irrelevant in WWII, we should expect other countries who cannot hope to match the power of the USAF to look to missiles and drones to defend themselves.

Developing and maintaining drones and missiles that can swarm against manned fighters is something that many countries can hope to achieve. These countries know that they could never train or maintain a manned force capable of resisting the USA. This leaves them with the choice of either surrendering to the demands and whims of Washington & Moscow or developing/buying a capability to deter attack.

The future drones don't need to be as good as a highly trained western pilot in the latest fighter, it just needs to present a serious risk to said pilot. This risk that can be increased by the fact that the drones/missiles will be much cheaper and probably expendable in combat situations.

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Elon Musk and PayPal chum quit Zuckerberg's immigration gang

Stuart Grout

A free market in politicians

If you want to push an agenda in the most corrupt country in the world you have to expect to get your hands dirty.

If you expect to influence American politicians/ elected Judges/ elected Police Chiefs etc you have to bribe them with suitable campaign contributions. This means either notes in brown envelopes or paying for something they want on their behalf.

Of course if you did this in another country you would be convicted of corruption and end up behind bars.

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White House backs US web sales tax - eBay hits panic alarm

Stuart Grout

Sounds fair

On-line stores already have a significant advantage in not having to pay for retail sites or staff. The additional tax advantage makes it impossible for physical stores to compete.

With regards to E-bay. I'm not sure how they are treated in tax law but it would be easy enough for then to note the % tax to be paid by a customer based on where the buyer is. They already show me what a bid costs in real money rather than the $ the seller might be getting so telling me the sales tax I'll be paying should be easy enough.

Of course it will mean paying more for some purchases but that's just because we currently get a short term benefit in screwing over local retailers.

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Judge: Twitter offers free speech, American style

Stuart Grout

Alternative option

If Twitter didn't keep a copy of posts after the user has asked to delete them then there would be no problem. There would be nothing there to be handed over if Twitter behaved as users expected it to rather than trying to retain everything after it has served it's intended purpose.

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Second win for Apple as Galaxy Nexus sales banned in US

Stuart Grout

Justice

The good old US of A shows once again that it has the best justice that money can buy.

Fortunately I will not buy any more Apple hardware (only got an old 2nd gen ipod) and will now close down my iTunes account as I've already ripped everything I've bought to a more usable format.

Goodbye and good riddance to Apple, rotten to the core.

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FCC boss applauds moves to block UN internet control

Stuart Grout

UN has a better track record than USA

The UN has a much better track record on these issues than the USA.

If you look at the work of the UPU as delivering fair and effective international postal traffic you can see how it has managed to resist the vested interests of big players for over 100 years. The same can't be said of the USA which bends to the whim of whatever well paying lobbyist is stuffing the brown envelopes.

The USA would find there would be much less support for changes if it would just leave the Internet alone and stop trying to impose it's internal agendas on the rest of the world.

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Honour for Queen's IT manager

Stuart Grout

Typical arrogance!

So the Queen makes her kid a Field Marshal, Admiral of the Fleet and Marshal of the Royal Air Force. Treating the uniform and those that have earned their stripes with contempt.

If our politicians (even those that have served) started awarding themselves military rank and playing dress-up in uniforms they would be subject to well earned ridicule and contempt. But then such stupidity comes as no surprise.

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NHS fights record £325k ICO fine after clap records appear on eBay

Stuart Grout

Pay the fine and go after the contractor

I assume the contractor the NHS was paying was responsible for doing the job correctly.

They failed and landed their customer with a big fine. I'd be very surprised if the NHS couldn't go after the contractor for the fine and any other expense they can think of. Then maybe the contractor would be even more careful about which subcontractor they employed.

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