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* Posts by Graham Marsden

5068 posts • joined 19 Jan 2007

Dark blue side of the Force used to quell Star Wars nerd clash

Graham Marsden
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Slow news day...?

This story was on the BBC news site yesterday and it's a total storm-in-a-teacup piece of nonsense.

Would it have got any coverage if it was one of the many incidents such as in pubs where a couple of voices get raised and the Police come along and say "ok, just calm down" and nothing more comes of it? No, probaly not, but because it's "oh look, let's laugh at the geeks who dress up in the funny outfits", suddenly it's worth a few column inches.

Big deal.

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United Nations: 'Overpopulated Earth? Time to EAT BUGS'

Graham Marsden
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@Aaron Miller - Re: @Aaron Em - @RonWheeler - Or...

Am I supposed to be impressed by more of your pontification? Let alone your arguments ad hominem?

You accuse me of confusion, but that confusion only exists because of the completely erroneous assumptions you make all through your diatribe, assigning motivations and beliefs to me that I do not hold and have never held.

You claim I fail to recognise the difference between correlation and causation, yet a look back through my posts in El Reg would reveal that this something which I have often commented upon, so how can I get it right all those times, yet suddenly get it wrong now? Or perhaps the error is not mine.

Equally, the assumption of "an ideal human breeding habit" is yours, not mine. I have not said, nor would I that this is "ideal", merely that it is better than the situation that exists where poor education standards are shown to correlate with higher birth rates.

And, yes, I most certainly do, with entire validity, accuse you of using Straw Man arguments. Perhaps you would care to now actually address the points I make, rather than the ones you wish to think I have made?

Or would you prefer to simply attempt to denigrate my intelligence whilst actually revealing your own failings in this area? If so, I'll leave the last word to you.

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

@Aaron Em - Re: @RonWheeler - Or...

I almost missed your remarks to me since they were below the "expand comment" and it was only that I happened to spot my surname (why only my surname "Em"?) that caused me to read the rest of your post after a lot of tedious and irrelevant pontification about the use of English.

In any case, in response to your remark "You imply causation where none is known to exist", a simple search on the "relationship between education and birth rate" would have shown you that causation is most certainly known to exist, for instance: "A women's educational level is the best predictor of how many children she will have, according to a new study from the National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study, based on an analysis of 1994 birth certificates, found a direct relationship between years of education and birth rates, with the highest birth rates among women with the lowest educational attainment."

http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/pressroom/97facts/edu2birt.htm

(There are plenty more references below that one, too.)

As for your claim that I am a eugenecist of *any* type, let alone that of RonWheeler, you show yourself to be equally lacking in knowledge on this subject.

Eugenics, from the Greek word eu (good or well) and the suffix -genēs (born), stems from a desire to "improve" the human race either by weeding out the "unfit" or encouraging the "best" to reproduce, neither of which I have supported, do support or ever will support.

Reducing the birth rate by improving education has *nothing* to do with Eugenics and if you think that increased education is only available to affluent societies or that it is some how "dis-privilegeing" societies you simply demonstrate even more ignorance of the subjects under discussion.

Ironically it was RonWheeler who accused *me* of using Straw Man arguments...

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Re: @RonWheeler - Or...

"No I wasn't. Go build another straw man."

A Straw Man argument involves exaggerating or misrepresenting someone else's argument. Since your entire argument so far appears to be "start treating breeders like the ignorant selfish people that they are" without any more details, there isn't anything there *to* misrepresent other than a vague statement, hence why I expressed an opinion about what *appears* to be your position.

If you would actually care to clarify your statement instead of just accusing others of "ignoring facts", it might help me to counter it.

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Graham Marsden
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Holmes

Do you know how sausages are made...?

Most people don't know and, if you told them, would wish you hadn't told them!

So why this assumption that, as happens with some countries in Asia etc, we'd actually be eating the insects with legs and wings and everything else intact?

Why not just grow them, farm them, then mince and pulp them before re-constituing them in a more palatable and pleasing-to-the-eye form, so it's no longer "a bug", but simply another form of protein?

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Re: Nutritional

Perhaps you've not heard of Louis Pasteur? The guy who discovered that heating something to 70 degrees for 10 seconds (ie cooking it) killed harmful microbes...

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

@RonWheeler - Re: Or...

"The overpopulation problem doesn't exist".

Of course it does, but you appear to be offering the solution of eliminating the breeders by some form or other instead of *educating* people which history has shown to be an effective way to be the way to reduce reproduction rates.

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'Ring of fire' eclipse to burn Australia

Graham Marsden
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Mushroom

Don't want a Ring of Fire?

Lay off those hot curries, then!

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Secret UN 'ZOD' climate deliberations: UK battles to suppress details

Graham Marsden
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FAIL

Re: And yet the warmologists will defend them

Just to let you know that I've downvoted you because you're being as arrogant as the people you're decrying.

For more details, please contact my solicitors, Messers Pott and Kettle-Black...

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Self-assembling robot inches towards WORLD DOMINATION

Graham Marsden
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Terminator

Soon, fleshy ones...

... soon!

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TV gesture patent bombshell: El Reg punts tech into public domain

Graham Marsden
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More gestures...

.... One palm on centre of chest, other above it, make rapid pressing motions: Find me a hospital drama.

Finger rotated in a cirdle next to temple: I want to watch a programme like Jackass or Mr T's Craziest Fools

Finger inserted into mouth, head bowed forward: I want to watch X-Factor, Britain's Got Talent or Big Brother

PS [Smug Mode]Thanks for the mention :-) [/Smug Mode]

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Politically-correct 'Fairphone' goes on pre-sale next week

Graham Marsden
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WTF?

What does this have to do with "political correctness"?

PC is simply mindless avoidance of "offensive" terms or, at least, in the view of some idiot, words which could conceivably cause offence to someone of a particular racial/ religious/ whatever group, and usually done without even *asking* people from that group whether or not they'd be offended.

I see nothing in this that has anything to do with PC.

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Russian geologist claims finding chunks of Tunguska Event invader

Graham Marsden
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Alien

I've been looking for that...

...everywhere!

Xrp!ltich the Rplatzian

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Google Glass eye-cam to turn us all into right little winkers

Graham Marsden
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Childcatcher

@AC - Re: @Crisp - Seriously? People think this is all going to be OK?

Right, because *no* cameras should be allowed anywhere in public for fear that they might capture the image of a child...

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Graham Marsden
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@Stevie - Re: @Graham Marsden @LinkOfHyrule - Seriously? People think this is all going to be OK?

If you are doing something in a public space you have *no* right to expectation of privacy!

However I do agree that there should be stronger penalties applied to people using any "distracting technology" whilst in control of a vehicle. If you do something stupid which hurts you, that's your problem. If it hurts someone else, that's a legal problem.

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

@LinkOfHyrule - Re: Seriously? People think this is all going to be OK?

"Might as well just let David Cameron install a webcam in my toilet and be done with it"

No, the correct comparison would be *you* installing a webcam in your toilet. Nobody is forcing you to wear these glasses.

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Scramjet X-51 finally goes to HYPER SPEED above Pacific

Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Remember Lasers?

When they were first invented they were referred to as "A solution in search of a problem".

How did that work out?!

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Star Trek: The original computer game

Graham Marsden
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Re: I remember...

I don't recall animated phasers, but when you fired a photon torpedo a little blob did run across the screen and hit the Klingon with an asterisk shaped explosion :-)

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Graham Marsden
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I remember...

... playing this on an 8k Commodore Pet!

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Anonymity ZUCKS: Facebook's Instagram to switch on face tagging

Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Well...

... here's a pic of John xxxxxx pi$$ing up against a wall. Oh and here's Jenny yyyyy throwing up into a rubbish bin after getting drunk.

And here's a picture of Terry zzzz and Andy aaaaaaa caught comparing the sizes of their cocks...

So when you said you wanted References for them, which company did you say you worked for?

No, I can't see anything that could go wrong with this.

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Tiny fly-inspired RoboBee takes flight at Harvard

Graham Marsden
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Black Helicopters

Prior art from Judge Dredd...

... Spy in the Sky microdrones

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So long, Hotmail: Remaining users migrated to Outlook.com

Graham Marsden
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@Trib Re: Hotmail - for El reg ID's

Or you can turn off the ads with NoScript and Adblock Plus.

And if it's something his system, it's something with mine as well (running Firefox) because when I first try going into it and try to click on anything it's "oops, no, not going to do anything yet, still loading lots of crap, wait five seconds and then try again and maybe the whole page will have loaded..."

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UK.gov's love affair with ID cards: Curse or farce?

Graham Marsden
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Big Brother

@Caff Re: Will be forced on us

No, that's not a *need*, that's an excuse.

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Graham Marsden
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Big Brother

@william 10 Re: ID cards - good, database - bad

Do I need to produce ID to travel in a taxi? No.

Do I have to pay for my train ticket with a card (or produce a card to get permission to buy one)? No.

Do I have to purchase a non-anonymous Oyster Card to travel in London? No.

I *can* do these, if I wish, but that's my *choice*, it's not an obligation.

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Graham Marsden
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Big Brother

@I think so I am? Re: Bad ideas never die...

You are not required to carry a passport or National Insurance card simply to prove that you have the right to walk down the street.

It has long been a principle of English Common Law that you have the right to "Go about your lawful business without let or hindrence" ("let" meaning needing permission).

ID cards could (and very probably would) be used to infringe this right.

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Want to know what CIA spooks really think of spy movies and books?

Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

"it simply doesn't portray the shadowy world of intelligence effectively"

And if it did, do you think they'd *say* so?

"Oh, yes, that's a perfectly accurate depiction of the way we do XYZ, so all our enemies will now know what we do and be able to develop ways to stop us..."!

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Gaming app ENSLAVES punter PCs in Bitcoin mining ring

Graham Marsden
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Holmes

"unauthorized actions of this unauthorized individual"

The cynical part of me reads that as "fall guy"...

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EFF report identifies which internet firms 'have your back' on data

Graham Marsden
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Trollface

"gold stars...

"...(a curiously child-like scoring system, in this hack's opinion)"

Points at the Michelin Guide: "They started it!!"

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Oz volcano's lava lake spills from crater

Graham Marsden
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Pirate

What a perfect place...

... for my secret underground base from which I will rule the world!

Mwahahahaaa!

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One of the world's oldest experiments crawls towards a fall

Graham Marsden
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Unhappy

Re: Worlds Oldest Experiment?

Damnit, I know i've seen a programme featuring the experiment you mention, but I *cannot* find a reference for it!

IIRC it's an experiment in the diffusion of liquids using two 10' long (or some such size) vertical tubes, I think the top one had copper sulphate in and the bottom one was water. The experiment is to see how long it will take before both tubes are an identlcal colour and it had been running since the 19th century.

My recollection was that it was in a chemistry lab at Oxford or Cambridge but my google-fu has let me down :-(

Anyone else remember this?

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Budweiser's bonkable Buddy Cup brings Facebook to the pub

Graham Marsden
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Pint

Shay...

... yer my besht mate, buddy, knowatimean...

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Malwarebytes declares Windows 'malicious', nukes 1,000s of PCs

Graham Marsden
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WTF?

@Ledswinger - Re: This is not rocket science...!

"Quite seriously, if they aren't charging, is it reasonable to expect much in the way of testing (or development, or anything, really)?"

I would ask "Are you serious?" but you appear to be...!

If someone is offering a product which is designed to protect your computer from software which may damage it, but which has been inadequately tested and so *causes* damage to your system, then they cannot simply disclaim liability for that failure by saying "well, it was free, so people shouldn't expect it to work properly"!

More importantly, the idea of the "free product" is to get people to sign up for the paid product, so making such a monumental cock-up as this is liable to damage confidence in your business and mean they go to another, more reliable, supplier.

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Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

This is not rocket science...!

How can any anti-virus company release an update without comprehensive testing on a range of machines with various generally expected software configurations to ensure that this sort of thing doesn't happen?

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US House of Representatives passes CISPA by 288-127

Graham Marsden
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Facepalm

Warning - Red Herring Alert!!! Re: What I don't understand...

Brilliant: Any discussion about the actual subject of this article is now liable to be dragged off-topic by pointless ranting about America's Gun Laws!

Please Do Not Feed The Troll!

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UK's first copyright swap-shop for cat pics (etc) still yonks away

Graham Marsden
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@AC Re: BBC

"I'd be negotiating the rights properly rather than just sending it in free."

The problem is that most people don't realise that, by sending stuff into the BBC, they're effectively giving it to them for free in perpetuity, let alone have any idea *how* to negotiate the rights properly.

Of course it's not in the BBC's interests to tell them about this...

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Apple branded porno-peddling perverts by Chinese Pravda

Graham Marsden
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Alert

I must immediately...

... check out these 198 sites to see *just* how disgusting they are...!

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US Justice Department pushes for fairer spectrum auctions

Graham Marsden
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"the highest bidder will make the greatest use"

Unless (for reasons best known to itself) the regulator decides that the highest bidder has bid *too* high, won't be able to keep up their payments and declares the second highest bidder the winner!

This happened way back in 1990 when TVS (who held the ITV franchise for the south of England) massively outbid the competition but the ITC decided that they wouldn't be able to pay that amount and gave it to Meridian!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Television_South#Loss_of_Franchise

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Are biofuels Europe's sh*ttiest idea ever?

Graham Marsden
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Coat

"more efficient cars which use turbo boost"

You mean like the Knight Industries Two Thousand?

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Hands up who wants 3D finger-controlled fridges? That's the spirit

Graham Marsden
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Prior art from the Hitch-Hiker's Guide...

"A loud clatter of gunk music flooded through the Heart of Gold cabin as Zaphod searched the sub-etha radio wave bands for news of himself. The machine was rather difficult to operate. For years radios had been operated by means of pressing buttons and turning dials; then as the technology became more sophisticated the controls were made touch-sensitive--you merely had to brush the panels with your fingers; now all you had to do was wave your hand in the general direction of the components and hope. It saved a lot of muscular expenditure, of course, but meant that you had to sit infuriatingly still if you wanted to keep listening to the same program."

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Graham Marsden
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Re: Don't worry, the porn industry will kill it...

And how will they tell the difference between what someone may be doing when watching porn and a gesture used when, say, Peter Mandelson appears on screen?

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Firefox 'death sentence' threat to TeliaSonera over gov spy claims

Graham Marsden
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Big Brother

"it will be seen as a tough stance against corporations...

"...that trade with authoritarian states."

And what about governments who trade with authoritarian states? Can you name any, boys and girls...?

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Smart metering will disrupt weather forecasts, warns Met Office

Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Re: Owl?

I got given a "clamp round the mains cable" meter by Scottish Power when I switched to them a couple of years ago.

After a week or so of checking, I found that, unsurprisingly, I was already using pretty much the minimum amount of electricity I needed because I do incredibly clever things like *switching stuff off* when I'm not using it!

PS @ AC, you'd let the electriicty company remotely switch off your fridge? I hope you enjoy food poisoning...

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Will Google's rivals swallow the 'labelling remedy' pill?

Graham Marsden
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'BEUC called for an alternative remedy -

'an "even-handed" principle, in which Google "must hold all services including its own to exactly the same crawling indexing ranking display and penalty algorithms".'

I do believe that this was what I was talking about in the recent comments thread about Google Maps.

If you're going to offer your search results as if they're "fair and balanced", that should be the same for *all* results, not "all results except ours". Otherwise it should at the least be made clear that some results are being prioritised above others the way that they already do with ads and sponsored results and they should provide a link to alternative mapping services.

PS And this is *not* the same as expecting Tesco to advertise ASDA's products, see the previous comment thread for details.

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British designer builds $15m iPhone for Hong Kong mogul

Graham Marsden
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Coat

I bet...

... that voided his warranty...!

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Cutting CO2 too difficult? Try these 4 simple tricks instead

Graham Marsden
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Holmes

"Climate Central openly confesses to being engaged in social engineering...

"as much as anything else. The organisation states: We use proven social science methods to determine what messages resonate with our viewers"

Well damn them! What a sneaky and underhanded method of getting their point across.

Isn't it incredible that nobody has ever thought of this before...?

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Remember Streetmap? It's suing Google in a UK court

Graham Marsden
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@obnoxiousGit

In your desperate hurry to show how clever you are by lecturing me about what the law says (not to mention creating ridiculous Straw Man arguments), you appear to have overlooked such things as anti-trust and anti-monopoly laws which are intended to prevent anti-competitive behaviour by abuse of a monopoly (or near-monopoly) position.

It seems that you're in favour of totally unregulated free market capitalism which doesn't operate for the good of the customer, but only for the good of the shareholders and directors (aka "fuck you, I'm alright Jack") but I prefer to look at the slightly bigger picture.

In any case (not least given that you've implied that I'm a "nazi" for wanting to do this) I see little point in trying to carry on a reasonable discussion with you, so feel free to enjoy the last word. (Try not to sprain your arm patting yourself on the back...)

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Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Re: obnoxiousgit @JetSetJim - I remember streetmap...

Oh dear, obnoxiousGit, you're really trying to live up to your self-chosen moniker, aren't you?

I had a bet with myself that you'd try to pick nits by claiming "Haha! You said 'map'" not "map of somewhere" and claim a pedantic victory point, so congratulations on living down to my expectations. And calling me names is just sad.

As for "users who have all choosen Google as a search provider", that's like Microsoft claiming that people "chose" to use Internet Explorer, so please stop with that tedious nonsense.

If you want a better example than the tired old ones that you're repeating, consider this: What if you ran a butchers or a green grocers in a town centre and then Tescos or some other large chain decide to try to get planning permission to build their supermarket on the main road coming into town. Are they offering customers a better product? No. What they're doing is making sure that anyone who comes to that town is presented with TESCO right up front so other businesses are much less likely to get a look in.

This is not ridiculous, this *has happened* such that many shops who were offering higher quality products have been put out of business because most people don't bother to look any further than the first big shop they come to.

That is what Google are doing.

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Facebook Home gets SMACKDOWN from irate users

Graham Marsden
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Devil

All your smartphone...

... are belong to us...

... bitch!

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Dubai splurges on 700hp, 217mph Lamborghini police cruiser

Graham Marsden
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Well...

... IIRC one UK force did try a Sierra Cosworth, but that's not really as cool...

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Anons torn over naming 'n' shaming of 17yo's gang-rape suspects

Graham Marsden
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Boffin

Those accused of rape and similar crimes...

... should be given anonymity unless and until they are proven guilty, otherwise this just panders to the lynch mob mentality of the readers of certain Tabloids amongst others and they will most likely be "tried in the media", have their lives torn apart and their (potential) careers destroyed such that even if or when they are found not guilty, they'll find it incredibly difficult to recover.

"Naming and Shaming" like this will have the same sort of effect from those who think that "there's no smoke without fire" because if you throw enough mud, some of it will stick.

Imagine if you were one of those people but were innocent, yet every time someone looks for your name (such as a prospective employer!) it came up "suspected rapist"...

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