* Posts by Ian Bush

90 posts • joined 26 Jun 2007

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Iain Duncan Smith's Universal Credit: A timeline

Ian Bush

Perhaps the mistake is that believing once you've had the initial idea the implementation is the easy part

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NAO slates UK.gov's 'haphazard' sci-tech money-chuck plan

Ian Bush

Re: Toys for the minister to stand in front of

For that money sharks with frickin' lasers surely?

But seriously BIS does. That resource is called "The Research Councils." But because advice is given it doesn't mean it has to be listened to, for instance if it inconveniently doesn't recommend funding the ministers latest favourite new toy. In fact it might be better to reorganise things so that such advice isn't received in the first place.

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Ian Bush

Where's the recurrent spending?

And if you are buying the toys for the minister to stand in front of where, as the article mentions in passing, where is the money to keep it going when the minister returns to his club in London? in my own area, supercomputing, the real issue is not a lack of toys to play with, it's a lack of skilled individuals to help people use those toys well and the money to fund the day to day running costs. Such people require a unique set of experience and skills, yet the wages available for them are often low for such a skill set (so recruitment is hard), there is often little chance of career progression, and funding such people through grant money is often difficult. Yet without them the capital investment is simple a pile of silicon, metal and plastic sat in the corner ...

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State should run power firm spam database, says... competition watchdog

Ian Bush

Oh for crying out loud

'The UK’s competition regulator wants to see a new database of utility customers set up so they can be bombarded with “targeted marketing”.'

In a time of stupid ideas this is one that truly stands out. I don't want this targeted marketing. I don't want to spend my spare time trawling through the different offers. I couldn't even give a flying one about so called "competition". I just want the right not to be ripped off. Is this so difficult?

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Sir Clive Sinclair in tech tin-rattle triumph

Ian Bush

Re: 30% chance of failure?

I found that, at least with my hi-fi, if you whacked the volume up to 11 until everything was clipped into nice square waves it very rarely failed to load. The speccy speaker didn't like it very much though

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Intel talks concurrency and Knights Landing

Ian Bush
Headmaster

Re: I'm excited...

Sigh ... It's Fortran, not FORTRAN. has been officially for over 25 years. I must get out more.

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At least 10 major loyalty card schemes compromised in industry-wide scam

Ian Bush

Re: But why

Why does a sandwich company need any of this at all?

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France's 3-month state of emergency lets govt censor the web

Ian Bush

Liberté, égalité, fraternité ...

Well at best they're down to 2/3 now.

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BOFH: We're miracle workers. But you want us to fix THAT in 10 minutes?

Ian Bush

Re: There's a difference

"no-changes-on-a-Friday"

That's close to what we call it, but not quite ...

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Think Fortran, assembly language programming is boring and useless? Tell that to the NASA Voyager team

Ian Bush
Coat

Simply

END

As in Fortran GOD is implicitly real

5
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TalkTalk attack: 'No legal obligation to encrypt customer bank details', says chief

Ian Bush

No Legal Obligation To Shut My Front Door

I have no legal obligation to shut and lock my front door, that doesn't mean it's not at least partially my fault when I leave it open and get burgled

35
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White House 'deeply disappointed' by Europe outlawing Silicon Valley

Ian Bush

"We are deeply disappointed in today's decision"

Ahhh, diddums ...

"I strongly encourage the Department of Commerce to conclude ‎negotiations on a new agreement with the European Union that allows the free flow of data to continue"

You broke your last toy by being naughty with it, why should you get a new one?

11
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Fiorina: I rushed out HP servers to power NSA snooping. Mwahahaha!

Ian Bush

But the point is surely that if people like her or Trump can evenly be vaguely considered as presidential material, well ... well that US politics, and by extension that of its allies, is just broken

3
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More email misery and pillory for Hillary as FBI starts quizzery

Ian Bush
Facepalm

"Data Centre -> HPC

More email misery and pillory for Hillary as FBI starts quizzery"

Why on Earth is this marked HPC? El Reg uses that term more widely than most, but surely this is pushing it!

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Volkswagen used software to CHEAT on AIR POLLUTION tests, alleges US gov

Ian Bush
Boffin

Re: I'm guessing that...

Nit from a chemist: All nitrogen oxides are thermodynamically unstable ("endothermic") w.r.t. the elements

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UK terror law probe stresses 'safeguards' amid MI5 plot claims

Ian Bush
Thumb Down

Blighty is little different. Indeed the rush to follow the lead of the "Land Of The Lobbyist" is one of the things that most depresses me, politically even having a common language barely divides us any more.

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Ian Bush

"Blighty's domestic intelligence agency MI5 foiled a number of life-threatening terrorist plots over the last 12 months, underlining the" point that existing powers are more than sufficient to address current needs.

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Ahmed's clock wasn't a bomb, but it blew up the 'net and Zuckerberg, Obama want to meet him

Ian Bush

Re: My friend did take a bomb to (primary) school.

Maybe Texas kids should organise a "Bring A Clock To School" day

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'To read this page, please turn off your ad blocker...'

Ian Bush
Mushroom

A Doctor Writes ...

Well you can fuck right off then

3
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PRIMITIVE TOOLS found near MICROSOFT headquarters

Ian Bush
Coat

MS would certainly be an aid to productivity

"Do you want to allow the following flint to make change to this rock?"

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Windows 10 climbs to 3.55 per cent market share, Win 8.1 dips

Ian Bush

Re: "where it's free for consumers"

Indeed - there's a vaccine for Ebola nowadays

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UK.gov will appeal against DRIPA-busting verdict, says minister

Ian Bush
Pint

Random Fluctuations in the Cosmos

My word, I agree on something with David Davis! The world gets stranger every day ...

But a beer to the both of you. And good luck to Tom in your deputy leadership challenge - one of the few truly good people left in British Politics, and an excellent music taste as well. What do you think of Royal Blood?

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Bernie Sanders wants FCC to probe broadband prices (but wait, is there an election coming?)

Ian Bush

Re: Bernie Sanders

Indeed - he's the last vestige of civilised society in US politics. Good luck to him!

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Unions call for strike action over 'unusable' Universal Credit IT

Ian Bush

But not "universal". That went a long time ago...

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It's 2015 and Microsoft has figured out anything can break Windows

Ian Bush
Facepalm

Finally the truth is revealed ...

"Microsoft head software engineer Lee Holmes says Windows 10 applications will now be able to plug into installed anti-virus platforms to better malicious scripts."

The Evil Empire is back!

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A 16 Petaflop Cray: The key to fantastic summer barbecues

Ian Bush
Headmaster

Re: 2 million lines of FORTRAN code

Errrr, Standard Fortran (note spelling) has never had a punch construct. And your history is wrong as well

2
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Citizens denied chance to vote in local-government IT cockup

Ian Bush

Re: Solid Labour seats

Oxford west and Abingdon? ~170 majority and postal ballots have gone missing

4
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Saudis go ape, detain Swedish monkeys at border

Ian Bush
Black Helicopters

Are you listening Mr Hammond?

"Sweden's foreign minister criticised Saudi Arabia's human rights record.

Last month, foreign minister Margot Wallström said it was unethical for Sweden to continue with its military co-operation agreement with Saudi Arabia."

Well said. Mr Hammond, are you listening?

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Google cracks down on browser ad injectors after shocking study

Ian Bush

Re: Unwanted ad injectors aren't part of a healthy ads ecosystem

Disagree. The need for ABP, and I can't understand how people browse without it, is a symptom, it's not the cure. That will come when the advertisers understand that they haven't got a god given right to shove their crap in your face 24,7 whether you want it or not. But it's going to be a chilly day in hades then

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SGI sales mushroom with Atomic Weapons Establishment deal

Ian Bush

Re: Can someone explain....

Just like paperwork and your desk the computation expands to fill the computer ...

Remember in computational science it is very rare that computers give exact solutions to the real physical problem. Rather approximate solutions to models of reality are what you get, and the game is to get the most accurate solution to the best model that you can solve. 10 years ago the computational facilities could solve certain models to a certain accuracy. 10 years of improvement allows

a) more accurate and complex models to be solved

b) already used models to be solved at higher accuracy

c) a mixture of both

I don't know what kind of models they are solving, but for b) it might be as simple as resolving features in the solution at 1km instead of 5km (c.f. weather forecasting). And the higher accuracy in this case really is very much better - I really don't want these things going kablooey unrequested, and like the poster above I'm interested that this is done from every viewpoint AND with the best accuracy that is currently feasible.

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UK.gov shovels £15m into training new quantum engineers

Ian Bush

Re: Time to market

Indeed. But today research is run by the bean counters who only care if the books balance at the end of the year. Any research getting done is purely incidental and of not great import comapred to that.

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Kepler's STILL GOT IT! Space telescope spots SUPER-EARTH 180 light years away

Ian Bush

Re: Further research needed

Simple. Just send the B ark out first. Of course the others can follow later.

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729 teraflops, 71,000-core Super cost just US$5,500 to build

Ian Bush

Re: Maybe the UK's Met Office should use it.

And the Unified Model would run like a dog on it, you (and the Met Offices paying customers) probably wouldn't get tomorrow's prediction until next week at best, and it would cost a huge amount more in recurrent rather than capital expenditure.

Comparing embarrassingly parallel workloads on loosely coupled, rented hardware and communication sensitive codes that require tightly coupled, low latency hardware is at best an exercise in futility.

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Ian Bush
Paris Hilton

"He's fucking fantastic people"

Too much information ...

7
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Apple KILLS SUPER MARIO. And Zelda. And Sonic

Ian Bush
Headmaster

"One emulatrix tweeted:"

...

"He later added:"

Sigh...

3
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New voting rules leave innocent Brits at risk of SPAM TSUNAMI

Ian Bush

Re: DPA

'There should be a box saying " the information provided is for Electoral Administration purposes only " for you to tick.'

Rather, at least on line, there should be a box for you to untick

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Samsung will ... sigh ... appeal $119m Apple patent verdict

Ian Bush
Stop

Re: Not much to choose between them

Agreed, but if a pox on the companies what malady is sufficient for the ultimate problem here, the ridiculous state of the US legal system wrt IP issues?

(And yes, I know there are multiple redundancies in that sentance)

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Surf's up near Saturn as boffins spot waves on Titan

Ian Bush
Boffin

Re: Announcing the bleeding obvious

Might be "bleeding obvious" to you, but till it is observed it ain't science - it was probably bleeding obvious in 1588 that the heavier a thing was the faster it fell, but then Galileo's balls dropped and the world was changed.

And kudos to those involved just for being able to see this, as noted above.

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Open MPI hits milestone with FORTRAN-ready 1.7.4 release

Ian Bush
Headmaster

Please, the capitalisation ... It's Fortran. It's been officially Fortran for almost 25 years now. And if you look at the original Fortran manual

https://www.fortran.com/FortranForTheIBM704.pdf

you'll see it was Fortran in 1956

3
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CERN boffins fire ANTI-HYDROGEN BEAM

Ian Bush
Boffin

Re: What's with that?

Not my area, but my guess is that it is becuase the spectrum gets messed up in strong magnetic fields. See e.g.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeeman_effect

Note that refers to first order perturbation terms - I suspect (but don't know) that the fields use at CERN are strong enough to make that a very poor approximation, and that many more terms are needed.

1
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Torvalds: Linux devs may 'cry into our lonely beers' at Christmas

Ian Bush

Re: And cry you might

Please, factual posts like this look much better if you give at least some references so support your assertions. At the very least please quote your primary source, which I believe is www.pluckedoutmyass.com

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'Disruptive, irritating' in-flight cellphone call ban mulled by US Senate

Ian Bush

Opportunity Missed

Not the snappiest acronym for the bill. How about the "Courtesy Unto Normal TravellerS" act?

Ian

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OHM MY GOD! Move over graphene, here comes '100% PERFECT' stanene

Ian Bush
Boffin

Re: No, the -ene ending is entirely inappropriate.

"(And can one manufacture perfluorographene, which might make PTFE look sticky if it can exist at all? )"

Yes you can. Carbon monofluoride has been known for years, and mre recently graphene fluoride has been made.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphene_fluoride

Personally even if, and it's a big if, the predicted properties are found to be true I doubt stanene will ever be made, and if it is it will be highly unstable under any useful conditions - it will just disproportionate to elemental tin and either the di or tetra-fluoride. Tin just ain't carbon!

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Brit boson boffin Higgs bags Nobel with eponymous deiton

Ian Bush

Re: Mr Blue Sky

"Well, given most of the population of the planet, when presented with a decent description, would gibber and their heads would explode, probably not a good idea."

Ideal for one of the recent party conferences, then,

Ian

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Torvalds: 'We're not doing Linux95 … for a few years, at least'

Ian Bush

Re: If it's too hard for the experts...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distributed_revision_control

Ian

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Three used cheap deal to lure me into buying expensive slab, chap tells ASA

Ian Bush
Trollface

Re: Why bother?

'In "The Age of Austerity", do we really need any toothless (or muzzled) regulators?'

Of course we do! Regulation inhibits growth!! Under no circumstances should we regulate, that's anti-business!!! Your're not one of these red commie socialists, are you ?!!!!

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Intel ships high-powered C++ compiler for native Android apps

Ian Bush

Re: Yes, the Intel compiler is faster

"Unless you're doing some obscenely computationally intensive tasks, the Intel compiler isn't going to make a jot of difference other than scoring Intel a tick-in-a-box. Not really worth all the signing up."

I'm from the HPC world and while I agree with the "computationally intensive" bit that's not the only reason for getting a compiler. Different compilers have different debugging capabilities and expose different problems in code, and so I always try out code with a number of different compilers while developing - to get sucked into a "one true compiler" mentality can be very dangerous. So while I'm not sure about the relevance of the execution speed here, the possibility of checking the code with another compiler can only be a good thing.

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US Republican enviro-vets: 'Climate change is real. DEAL WITH IT'

Ian Bush
Boffin

Re: Whatever.

"Wait a minute..... so 30 degrees of global warming is a good thing, but 30.5 would suddenly be a catastrophe?"

Please define catastrophe, otherwise that has little to do with science.

All one can say scientifically is that

a) Current models estimate that the greenhouse effect warms the planet by ~30 degrees

b) Those models seem to do a reasonable job at describing (pre-)historic climates

c) These models correlate increasing CO2 in the atmosphere with increasing temperature

d) According to the models increasing global temperature has a number of climatic consequences

Anything beyond his is politics, and not science.

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Ian Bush

Re: Whatever.

"CO2 isn't (by an order of magnitude or so) the largest component of "green house gas". Good old dihydrogen oxide is."

Certainly H2O is the major comtributor to the Green House effect (order of magnitude is debatable). However that's irrelevant. The greenhouse effct is mostly a good thing, making the planet on average ~30 degrees warmer than one would expect. The problem is pushing a good thing too far, so what is at issue is not the major contributor to the greenhouse effect, but how the different contributions are changing. And CO2 is certainly a major contributor to the effect, and also it's concentration in the atmosphere has markedly increased over recent history.

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Nvidia buys Portland Group for compiler smarts

Ian Bush

Good luck Nvidia. My personal experience of the PGI compiler suite is that it is one that gives mediocre performance while failing to help me spot my stupidites. This is supported by

http://www.polyhedron.com/pb05-linux-diagnose0html

and

http://polyhedron.com/pb05-lin64-f90bench_SBhtml

though of course this is hardly full and complete coverage.

Personally I much prefer gfortran, not for political reasons, just because I think it's a better compiler.

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