* Posts by keithpeter

844 posts • joined 14 Jul 2007

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Storm in a K-Cup: My SHAME over the eco-monster I created, says coffee pod inventor

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Bah ... philistines - Man Coffee

@BobRockett

A pint mug? Try a half-gallon mucket heated on a wood fire. And egg shells to settle the grounds.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/07/09/how-coffee-fueled-the-civil-war/

Personally a moka pot does me.

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You're outta here! Baseball star strikes out sleazy trolls who targeted teen daughter

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: get yer pitchforks

"If I was a deranged protective dad I could have been face to face with any of these people in less than 4 hours. I know every one of their names, their parents, where they go to school, what they do, what team they are on, their positions, stats, all of it."

Quote from blog post by Father. Looks like he isn't rounding up any lynching party with pitchforks and torches. I admire his forebearence.

In my own teaching, I remind 17 year olds that facebook and twitter are NOT the back room of a youth club. When they post on 'social' media, they are basically standing in the centre of their city on a soap box with a megaphone, with *everyone* they know in the front row of the audience. That includes Mother, Significant Other and Future Employers. C.F. Jaron Lanier's arguments.

I hope Daughter can move on from this fast. UK specific: 17 year old lasses are sensitive to self image issues and actually *worry* about online comments.

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Lost WHITE CITY of the MONKEY GOD found after 500 years

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: "...The exact location is not being revealed..."

Quote from the article: "Aided by former Special Air Service (SAS) soldiers..."

@Tim: one hopes that covers your concern.

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C'mon! Greece isn't really bust and it can pay its debts

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: There was never a need for a combined currency all over Europe

...if only to avoid the idiocy of travelling across the continent with fifteen different currencies in your pocket, getting shafted coming and going on exchange rates.

Isn't it the ability of one currency to float against all the others that Worstall is on about? If Germany had the DM, it would have risen relative to other currencies and made German exports more expensive &c. As it is the Germans are selling goods at a lower Euro wide rate.

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'Utterly unusable' MS Word dumped by SciFi author Charles Stross

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Sometimes fonts and layout DO matter

It's fascinating to realise that the first Hugo award winner, Alfred Bester's "The Demolished Man", experiments with fonts and layouts on the page to describe telepathic conversations.

Upvote for Bester reference. Those who are not familiar with his work should google for the bibliography (and biography).

Sterne's The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman was using typographical effects to comment on the main narritive well back in the days of lead type in forms. He (and his printer) managed to get it to work for them. Surely we can manage an end-to-end distributed text editing and change tracking system for the novel industry at this (late) stage in the form?

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keithpeter
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Windows

Re: I admit, I am Word Processor inept.

"...though that might just be Suse's packaging or Gnome app running under unfavourable KDE settings..."

Yup - I had that one on Slackware with KDE 4.15. Slack does not install any Gnome libraries by default. There was a work around using a theme I recollect and some changes in the KDE config. I needed the oxygen-gtk2 engine installed and I had to puggle about disabling the LibreOffice KDE integration code. After that it looked toastie.

I'd ask on an OpenSuse forum for specifics.

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Superfish: Lenovo? More like Lolnono – until they get real on privacy

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Simple solution

So. Sony's out. (Fuck you, Sony!) Lenovo's out. Acer's HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA out. That's really starting to narrow the feild...

Clevo? some chatter on the Linux boards about these. Generic plastic case/chicklet but configurable.

May have to treat client as disposable going forward.

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keithpeter
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Linux

$30 extra for Signature Windows?

Just as a special offer for a couple of years from Lenovo, while they do all the trust building alluded to in Trevor's article. $30 extra on the consumer level laptops at the heart of this tale gets you the Microsoft Windows Signature install or equivalent that MS provide. MS might even do a deal as it would help their 'premium' brand as well. The take up would indicate the extent to which ordinary people are interested in their 'user experience'.

Typing this on an old Thinkpad (X60) running Jessie (testing) with the MATE desktop. Remarkably light and responsive on a 9 year old machine.

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Linux clockpocalypse in 2038 is looming and there's no 'serious plan'

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Too late!

"I cannot think of a single thing I have which relies on time values and is over ten years old, let alone twenty, but that's just me."

OK, a specific, concrete, example of something large and heavy that goes fast and that depends on an embedded system...

The minicomputers in some diesel electric trains date from 1980s. These won't be Linux kernel based obviously, but a diesel electric train tends to have a long life...

http://trid.trb.org/view.aspx?id=225737

Perhaps the ones being built now do have Linux based controllers. Perhaps these are 64 bit. Perhaps if 32bit, then they will simply stop working (safely) on the relevant date and display an error code. Transport is, fortunately, conservatively managed and suppliers will take a careful change management approach to maintenance. Problems should surface in advance.

The wider point: embedded systems are gleefully being added to many industrial and transport systems to reduce costs, improve monitoring, and provide hard data on use. This is an *expanding* market. Some suppliers will go bankrupt. It is possible that entire business models will be discarded, but will leave a layer of technology in racks in basements ticking away (e.g. DC mains power for 19th and early 20th century lifts/elevators in some cities - now mostly provided by local rectifier/choke sets).

Timely and repeated restatement of this issue and the mitigations available will help to offset any disruption and is best started *now* as most of the systems that will be functioning on the date in question have yet to be designed/implemented.

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For pity's sake, you FOOL! DON'T UPGRADE it will make it WORSE

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: bébé

https://medium.com/backchannel/the-last-of-the-typewriter-men-729f150c5083

Steampunk solution: A few typewriters (one for each major language), a microphone and some of the software that GCHQ/NSA may be developing for use near the Kremlin might solve the problem.

Seriously: the main issue is the project management of this new system. Reassuring that the commercial sector is just as bad at this as the public sector...

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So long, Lenovo, and no thanks for all the super-creepy Superfish

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Lenovo dead?

@ Florida1920

"The Independent is the only consumer-oriented news source on the first page of a Google search for "lenovo malware."

Print edition of the Financial Times this morning: teaser on front page with continuation towards the back. Hint: this is the one the MD and accountant read. Front page below the fold on BBC with link to Technology article. Hint: this is the one your MP/councillor/non-exec Director/School govenor reads.

Corporate channel managed kit not affected but perceptions will suffer methinks...

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Ads! People! love! ads! in! their! apps! Please! use! ours! cries! Yahoo!

keithpeter
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Windows

Sometimes...

...I click on ads that are relevant to a search for an actual product that I want to buy. I'm not averse to advertising that is

1) relevant

2) does not slow my elderly but still serviceable dual core laptop to a crawl

3) does not blink or flash (borderline epileptic)

Otherwise: noscript

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Don't touch me up there! Photoshop creator appeals for 'ethical' use

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Subscription model is sh**.

@TRT

Interesting post. Imagine pricing by feature rather like those 'add ons' the mobile phone companies push to pay as you go customers. Your 'utilisation percentage' view could be used to design a subscription structure that charges fairly low for bog standard basic controls but then prices in 'premium' controls much higher - allowing those premium controls to be purchased as you suggest by the hour. Might be a way forward...

Practical suggestion: Could the large medical science funders not put a moderate amount of development dosh into GIMP/Inkscape and reap rewards long term?

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Air gaps: Happy gas for infosec or a noble but inert idea?

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Costs

... doubtless with phone still in pocket inaudibly recording output from laptops CPU fan, HDD motor and optical drive motor oscillations.

Your welcome Dave.

Which part of "Operated in a central room with stainless steel walls..." did you not understand? Mr Faraday had the central idea a couple of centuries ago.

Seriously: the point I'm making is that this is all cost-benfit tradeoff not absolutes.

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keithpeter
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Windows

Costs

Air gapped laptop with wifi card removed, network card disabled, microphone removed, no webcam, speakers removed, usb sockets glued, runs from batteries when booted, chargers and removable parts (keyboard, ram &c) rotated regularily. Boots from an optical drive that has a CD-ROM containing appropriate OS with known checksums &c. Possibly using LibreBoot (checksums again, reflashed from optical drive weekly or something). Connected to a thermal printer of unusual design. Operated in a central room with stainless steel walls (like you have in commercial kitchens) without windows at least 30m from premises outer wall. Result: not far short of a mechanical typewriter but quieter (at least at audio frequencies).

It is all about cost and hassle VS likely degree of interest of material I imagine.

If you have the misfortune to be on a nation state's list, well, just use notebooks and burn them now and again. The obvious XSCD cartoon about password security springs to mind.

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Over 50? Out of work? Watch out because IT is about to EAT ITSELF

keithpeter
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Childcatcher

Tower of Babel

"...but what happens when someone gets the crazy idea to let Watson read all of Stack Overflow and O’Reilly and Slashdot and Google Groups and GitHub..."

Watson blows fuse, or prints an error message along the lines of 'training data inconsistent, please prune'.

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Ubuntu smartphone to go on sale: It'll be harder to get than a new iPhone

keithpeter
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Windows

No PC capability this time

if we'll be able to connect the phone to a bigger screen and use it as a desktop, it will be very appealing!

They blew it I'm afraid.

"Unlike the original proposal, the handset does not become a desktop PC when plugged into a monitor."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-31148661

So just another low end slab phone with a mildly interesting interface. I'd still get one if I happen to find myself near a flash sale or included in the appropriate magic circle. Not too interested in the hipster shiny race though really. It was the functionality I wanted.

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BYOD is NOT the Next Biggest Thing™: Bring me Ye Olde Lappetoppe

keithpeter
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Windows

KYDISH

Upstairs version....

Keep Your Dreadfully Insecure Stuff at Home

Surprised noone mentions remote desktop into company controlled PC on these occasions. Covers data security and network integrity to an extent that others here will no doubt wish to comment on. Seems to work as implemented at current main employer.

I'll admit to using RDP over the guest wifi on the employer's premises because my 6 year old refurbished Thinkpad / RDP session over wifi combination is *actually faster* than the desktop PC I have been allocated.

One cafe in Birmingham uses a 9 digit wifi password which they change weekly..... We always end up writing it down.

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'Boutique' ISPs: Snub the Big 4 AND get great service

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Xilo is hard to beat

The Talk and Surf product capped at 10Gb/month traffic looks ok to me as it includes line rental.

Now to investigate the *process of switching* (groan) both Internt (EE) and phone line (BT). Sigh...

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'YOUTUBE is EVIL': Somebody had a tape running, Google...

keithpeter
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Re: "Don't be evil"

"According to her website her husband is sick with lung cancer.

Dealing with that and the Google corporation must be horrific."

"YouTube is not at the top of my priority list right now" on the blog post linked in OA. One can understand why.

Ms Keating's most recent bandcamp release is Into the Trees. Apocalyptica meets Helen Jane Long. It is growing on me. I'm doodling on the piano along with it. I think you should all drop the price of a coffee and bun on a copy.

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keithpeter
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Pint

Re: "Don't be evil"

"According to her website her husband is sick with lung cancer.

Dealing with that and the Google corporation must be horrific."

Hence the comment on the transcript I imagine ("Youtube is not at the top of my priority list right now").

So I just bought her most recent work as a 320 Kb/s mp3 download from the efficient and well organised bandcamp Web shop. I suggest we all do the same.

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Nimble CEO lifts lid on sales veep saga. It ain't pretty

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Just wondering...

Interesting reply as always Trevor. Just a couple of thoughts...

"The sales guys also spend a lot of time training the channel partners so that they know enough about the product to answer questions/sell the boxes as well as to ensure channel partners are up on the technical side of things enough to provide tier 1 and tier 2 support. (With tier 3 typically going back to the startup's engineers.)"

Manuals? Wiki? Videos? FAQ cheat sheets? Basically why the need for actual presence?

"...at the executive layer they have to work closely with all the other tentacles of the company to ensure that A) they know what's changing and B) they manage to push those changes/training down to their army of salespeople and channel partners..."

Again issue tracker or wiki?

Am I being naive(*) or could not some of the organisational structures developed by the libre/open source community get used here to reduce the need for actual face time and allow a human scale sales committment?

(*) Quite possible, I work as a teacher.

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keithpeter
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Windows

Just wondering...

...what does a sales team in this kind of company actually do?

Customers are technically literate and presumably have a good idea of metrics. Will they not just run the numbers, check the tech and place an order?

The tramp for obvious reasons

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Microsoft will give away Windows 10 FREE - for ONE year

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Must say it..

"For consumers not wearing sandals, choice of Windows 10 for £0 or some ragtag unsupported shareware OS for £0 is indeed a 'no brainer'"

Quite so.

However GNU/Linux is available in various distributions, some of which have paid support pricing models (warmtoned headgear), and some of which have 3 to 10 year free support and a fairly solid reputation (smallest US currency denomination plus OS, and Deborah and Ian, and those chaps in London who hold hands just down from the Eye).

Theo De Raat does not strike me as the sandal wearing kind of chap come to think of it.

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keithpeter
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Childcatcher

Options...

"Cortana will be built into the operating system."

And we can switch it off easily?

Another paperclip looms for humble desktop users...

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Then there were 3: Another UK mobile network borged ...

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: cool phone number

0121-777-7777 (seven 7s) is a radio car company in Birmingham of which I am a semi-regular customer. Let's hear it for Asif and his beemer.

PS: paying for a landline just for broadband. Landline is a long way from exchange, adsl low speed at present. I want to dump the copper.

What is my best option for cheap (non-streaming) bandwidth without a landline?

The tramp for obvious reasons.

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Alan Turing's LOST NOTEBOOK goes under the hammer

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: "The Imitation Game"

"The "U-571" of Turing Biopics (What a complete load of tosh, dramatacised up for Hollywood)."

Not seen it so can't comment, but the publicity drive here in UK does mean my students have at least heard of Turing. Silly code games in maths lessons - went down very well, a bit of safety stuff from CEOPS made them think about https and the little padlock...

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keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Glad to see Turing had problems with notation!

Notations are important, you think through them, you frame things acording to their contours if that makes sense. Heaviside D operator is a good example: reduces certain classes of differential equation to polynomials.

About the notebook: just publish high res scans of the Turing pages so historians of maths can mine them. The book itself can then go to the collectors so far as I'm concerned.

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Microsoft rolls out even cheaper 'Notkia' Lumias

keithpeter
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Windows

Hoping for Nokia 215 for UK

Candybar resurgence.

Small, cheap, earphone socket/music player/microSD/FM Radio. Battery lasts half the week.

Previous version of this post disappeared after posting.

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keithpeter
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Childcatcher

Nokia 215 in UK?

I want the candybar reincarnation. Headphone socket, MicroSD storage, FM Radio, small, cheap, battery would last me half the week.

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Windows 7 MARKED for DEATH by Microsoft as of NOW

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Microsoft Hates Stable Software Like Windows 7

"The longest Linux support I know of is 5 years for the Ubantu LTS editions"

RHEL and clones (CentOS, Springdale Linux, Scientific Linux (Fermilab)) do 10 years.

https://access.redhat.com/support/policy/updates/errata/

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20 years on: The satirist's satirist Peter Cook remembered

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: The original Bedazzled

Yup, I was actually reading Dr Faustas (the Marlowe) play when I first saw a (repeat) of Bedazzled. Very close. The postbox adulation scene had me in stitches...

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Tor de farce: NSA fails to decrypt anonymised network

keithpeter
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Windows

Making the artificial fingerprint.

http://www.bom.org.uk/2014/11/26/hello-world/

Very near the back entrance to New Street Station should you happen to be passing. Video shows some detail on the way the artifical fingerprint can be made. I think it is still on, the CCC flag is still flying!

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Freedom of Info at 10: Tony Blair's WORST NIGHTMARE

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Burden

"Some of these requests are simple to serve. We have the reports, it's a straightforward public interest case, no problem. Others require a tortured process of pulling together separate data, various bits of separate reports and it's all a bit trivial in terms of the value of the information released."

Can you not publish a catalogue of available reports? Metadata so people can craft queries that you can provide easily?

Hungry journalists can always do the cross referencing themselves...

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Norks blame U.S. for TITSUP internet, unleash racist rant against Obama

keithpeter
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Windows

Re: jong un's a wrong 'un

"but china will always look after them..."

Up to a point. Will be interesting to see at what point the puppet masters decide it is time for a change of puppets...

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Devuan rebels hope to deliver Debian fork in 2015

keithpeter
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Will try it out...

...when there is an ISO or recommended install method.

Currently on Debian Sid on a newly aquired recycled Thinkpad X200 for messing about and wasting time on. Sid actually works very well. If Devuan can underpin the applications and desktop with their own subsystem, that would be ace.

May flog the X61s and donate proceeds in new year. The OpenBSD crew have asked for donations of specific kit in the past. Don't see any issues with purchase of new kit myself.

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BONK for CASH in Brixton and help us EAT the RICH

keithpeter
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Linux

blag

Brixton even had its own GNU/Linux distribution for a few years.

Brixton Linux Action Group (blag) sort of clings on in the form of a hardware recycling social enterprise. Blag Linux itself is under development again but with new developers from a wide range of countries.

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The Shock of the New: The Register redesign update 4

keithpeter
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Re: @KeithPeter re Top Links.

@Shadow Systems

Thanks for posting useful information about JAWS not recognising the 'skip to content' link at the top of the <body> section on each page of The Register.

Happy Christmas & good luck for the new year.

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keithpeter
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Windows

Re: @Swarthy re the Print link.

"What good is a printer to a blind person? We can't tell if it printed anything, can't see if the ink is going bad, and for all we know the printer is spitting out blank pages as it silently laughs at us."

I hope you are successful in getting The Register to restore the Print page link.

Does your screen reader recognise the 'skip to content' link at the top of each page? That link is set so as to be invisible to those using a visual brower by using a style sheet property, but is supposed to be recognised by screen readers and text-only browsers.

PS: I teach in a College in the UK. About 15 years ago I had a blind Braille reading student show up on a course. I was able to access a braille printer and a tactile image printer for providing him with lesson notes at a (very) local University. I changed the set textbook that year to one that the RNIB had available in Braille. It worked for him... perhaps try a local University should you want hard copy to refer to generally?

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Microsoft patch mashes Office forms and macros

keithpeter
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Windows

"... it does seem that patch cockups are happening more and more often with stuff coming out of Redmond."

Could this perception be related to the recent redundancies at Redmond, which I understand from one of the softie blogs, fell mainly among testing teams?

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Welsh council rapped for covert spying on sick leave worker

keithpeter
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Windows

Sudden Changes

"Rubbish. The teacher had an exemplary attendance record over nearly 30 years employment."

I'm suspecting (if the cause of the stress is actually work related and not something outside of work) that there has been a change of management recently and faces don't fit.

Teaching for 30 years implies a degree of resilience and the inspection regimes (both OFSTED and management 'quality assurance') are fairly stiff with the radically incompetent /just can't cope people generally managed out smoothly.

Not requesting any more information, just clarifying for the commentards.

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Armouring up online: Duncan Campbell's chief techie talks crypto with El Reg

keithpeter
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Windows

Horses for courses

"Consider who you're trying to keep secrets from when deciding how much extra effort to go to."

Yup: the LUKS whole drive encryption as built into the Debian and CentOS installers (and others I'm sure) will keep the offline saved copies of my emails about students away from the prying eyes of any petty thief who pinches my old laptop (or the civilian that finds it on the bus after I've had a Senior moment). Email is sent/received ssh/tls as direct snooping about Jemima's dental appointment and Enid's childcare problems probably not happening.

I might look at Truecrypt or similar for USB stick encrypting (read/write on windows and linux). Other suggestions welcome. 'Prying eyes' level only.

PS: Duncan Campbell was a hero when I was a (lot) younger.

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El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.

keithpeter
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Re: http://m.theregister.co.uk/

What I should have said was "any chance of getting the mobile version of pages linked to from the mobile page"

At present, links in m.theregister.co.uk lead to full fat targets even when m.theregister.co.uk targets exist. Seems like a bug to me...

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keithpeter
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Windows

http://m.theregister.co.uk/

As mentioned way up the screen the mobile site works rather well. I can tile Firefox with a terminal window side by side and browse while I wait for stuff to complete.

Any chance of forums/comments being available in same template?

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keithpeter
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Pint

large screens

How many of us use windows maximised on large screens? Just wondering.

(I personally use a left-right tile on screens of 1920 upwards).

+1 for redshift (mentioned many many pages up).

Pint icon for all as it is nearly the holiday up here in the dark North.

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keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Bring back the Print button!

"This would be one workaround. I just had a look at the page source, and indeed, a screenreader would have fun trying to find the content of the page."

Does your screen reader software not pick up the 'skip to content' link near the top of every page? I might get Orca running and see if it does pick up the link.

The style for the 'skip to content' link has been set to display:none so that it is not visible to people using ordinary Web browsers but I recollect is picked up by screen readers. This is a common convention for making a site more useful to non-visual users.

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keithpeter
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Windows

Re: Bring back the Print button!

"An unexpected use case of print icon. We'll have a think about this."

A single copy of JAWS standard isn't expensive. Gnome has Orca built in. Could you add a screen reader walk through to your testing routine?

Idea: Provide the print page in the same div as the skip to content link, so it has display:none style and visual users won't see it. Call the new link 'text only version of this page' or something and then explain the setting on your accessibility page.

http://www.jisctechdis.ac.uk/techdis/resources

Aimed at Colleges and Universities in the UK but the handouts might be useful.

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keithpeter
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Pint

Boxes floating on a grid

The wide monitor thing.

Just about ok on a small laptop. Daft on a large (27") monitor.

Can't you do the responsive thing with extra columns of content appearing on wider monitors?

PS: icon for the team that did the work even though people don't like it much.

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Cool technology: Submerged blade servers escape the heat

keithpeter
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Windows

Boggle our minds

"I have seen PCBs I cannot unsee."

Care to share a few or is it really that bad?

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Hipsters snap up iPod Classics for $$$s after Apple kills rusty gadget

keithpeter
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Windows

hard drive players...

...any other candidates spring to mind?

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