* Posts by David Woodhead

12 posts • joined 8 Dec 2012

NSA spied on 'radicalisers' porn surfing so as to discredit them, reveals Snowden

David Woodhead

Re: Revealing sources

Re Revealing sources

Well, precisely. So why do they need to collect any information in the first place, rather than just claiming that that's what the 'person of interest' has been doing? It doesn't matter whether it's true or not, as they're never going to be called out on it in any effective way.

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11m Chinese engulfed by 'Airpocalypse' at 4000% of safe pollution levels

David Woodhead

They're burning brown coal

The carbon emissions of the whole of the EU, let alone the UK, are as nothing compared with those of China's brown coal power stations. I completely believe in the contribution of man-made emissions to global warming, but anything that the EU can persuade its consumers do in this respect is irrelevant compared with China's output. Ditto Africa and North America. And China isn't going to cut back any time soon.

That's why all current attempts to reduce carbon emissions are doomed to failure.

Discuss.

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Anti-food startup Soylent pours sugar daddies' $1.5m into its gloopy mix

David Woodhead

You're having a larf

This has to be a joke. Surely no-one is going to put their hard earned pennies into this.

How long do people think this company is going to be around? And in any case, who wants to eat gloop for the rest of their life?

I have an unbeatable deal on London Bridge (or any other bridge for that matter) for those of you looking for an alternative investment ...

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Expert chat: The end of Windows XP and IE6

David Woodhead

Re: IE 6

You can install IE7 or IE8 on XP, you know. They may not be your browsers of choice, but they're a lot better than IE6, and if your friend really likes IE why not indulge him? Don't drag him out of his comfort zone just because of your personal preferences.

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Torched £30 server switch costs phone firm millions in lost sales

David Woodhead

Sounds like a guy we had at ICL (remember them?) in charge of testing user interfaces. When a software release was presented to him, the first thing he'd do was just slap his hand down on the keyboard a few times and see what happened. That got rid of about 50% of them with no further effort ...

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Apple 'iWatch' trademark filing hints Cook's make-or-break moment looms

David Woodhead

Re: Make or break the whole company with a frigging watch?

Reminds me of the launch of the Amstrad eMailer in the UK in the late 1990s. The disappointment trashed the share price to an extent from which it never recovered.

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Network Rail axes hundreds of tech suppliers

David Woodhead

Legacy systems?

They're still going to have hundreds of legacy systems running over the next few years. And if I were the supplier of one of these who's just been told they're not worthy to bid for any new business, I'd tell Network Rail where to stick their next support request. (Hint: the sun doesn't shine up there).

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Industry execs: Network admins an endangered species

David Woodhead

Oh, please ...

So you're trying to manage the business critical network infrastructure of a major organisation, and at the same time please your line manager by saving some money through firing network administrators who have a bit of experience and know what they're doing.

You do this by reading "HP is working on automated virtual application networks that treat a network as a unified pool of resources rather than as an agglomeration of individual devices" and thinking 'Gosh, that sounds impressive - I'll bet the farm on that one".

Well, good luck with that. The next time that a problem occurs which isn't covered by the "automated virtual application network's" set of problem solving menu screens, who you gonna call? GhostBusters?

Sometimes I despair.

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Gridstore does classic founder-to-CTO jive

David Woodhead

What?

Paragraph 1:

"Scale-out filer storage start-up Gridstore's founder is shuffling sideways to the CTO spot as his firm recruits a new CEO."

Is there any chance that these articles could be written in English so that the rest of us who don't speak gibberish could have a fighting chance of understanding them?

Thank you.

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Google Apps goes TITSUP for millions - users REJOICE on Twitter

David Woodhead

Oops ...

In the article:

"The company said it was investigating reports of disruption to its service and claimed that only 0.007 per cent of its users - which would amount to millions of people - were affected by Gmail and other online properties going titsup."

Let's assume that just 2 million people were affected. If they represent 0.007 per cent of Google's users, that would mean that their user base amounts to approximately 285,000,000,000 people. As the population of the Earth is around 7,000,000,000, there must be an awful lot of Zillons from the planet Tharg signed up to Google Apps as well.

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I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

David Woodhead

Re: My excuse...

Ah, so that's why people use Macs. I knew there had to be some good reason ...

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Behold ATLAS, the fastest computer of 50 years ago

David Woodhead

Jeff Rohl

When I studied Computation at UMIST in the mid 70s (University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, now sadly subsumed into the University of Manchester), I had the privilege of being taught by Jeff Rohl, one of the creators of Atlas Autocode - a kind of souped-up Algol specifically created for the Atlas.

I don't think that I ever worked directly on the Atlas - by that time UMRCC was primarily using ICL 1900s and its CDC 7600 and 6000 for university support services. I remember using teletype access to the CDC 6000 to develop a Pascal program to give you optimal strategies when playing blackjack, although needless to say this wasn't part of my course or even my final year project.

Anyway: Jeff Rohl was one of the finest teachers I ever encountered in my life. Soon after I left UMIST he returned to teach in his native Australia (Adelaide I believe), and I hope he achieved his ambition of conducting a Beethoven chorale performed by a top choir and orchestra. The one thing he taught me above all else, despite being a firm advocate of formally well designed and structured programming techniques was: if your program doesn't do what is set out in its specification then it's worthless, regardless of how well structured it may be. This was a most enlightened view from an academic, but served me well throughout my career.

Don't know if you're still with us Jeff, but thank you anyway.

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