* Posts by Francis Boyle

1458 posts • joined 29 Jul 2007

Australian Banks ask permission to form anti-Apple cartel

Francis Boyle
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Re: Life's hard choices

"Huh? Why should they grant chip level access to the NFC hardware? All that is needed is API access, based on NDEF standard, for example. There are valid reasons to not support the banks on this, but technology isn't one of them."

Seconded. If Apple are unable to provide secure access to authorised services their system doesn't deserved to be trusted.

I think I'll go for the banks here as the Hillary option.

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Tesla autopilot driver 'was speeding' moments before death – prelim report

Francis Boyle
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Re: Bah!

Shouldn't that just be someone saying "you're already dead" in a suitably doom laden voice.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: Why wasn't he paying attention?

"Demanding lorries be painted in patterns the computer running beta software can more easily spot is not the solution to this problem."

It strikes me that if some sort of high visibility markings (which the truck in the accident conspicuously lacks) were made mandatory it would benefit everyone on the road.

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Lowland Scots plunged into panic by marauding ostrich family

Francis Boyle
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Ostriches versus Glaswegian males

I'd probably give it to the Glaswegian males. Now, if it were cassowaries, no chance.

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Telstra's head of ops drops after network flops

Francis Boyle
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Yeah, I hear

they're headhunting Marissa Mayer.

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Florida Man cleared of money laundering after selling Bitcoins to Agent Ponzi

Francis Boyle
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Re: Stay Tuned ...

I'm glad to see that he's put that cannibal thing behind him. And all those other things. All in all one of his better days.

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Harrison Ford's leg, in the Star Wars film, with the Millennium Falcon door

Francis Boyle
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Re: Eh? What?

Ford's an actor. He wasn't responsible for the safety of the set. The company was. That's why they pleaded guilty.

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White House to bung electric car industry $4.5bn in loans

Francis Boyle
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Re: Electric car grants

"I'd like to see where you get the statistics for each electric car using the same power as a house."

I would like to as well. As far as I can tell a typical household in the developed world uses around 55-60% of its energy expenditure on private vehicles. But the conversion efficiency of an ICE is typically 30% while an electric motor is around 90% so the increase in domestic electricity consumption from converting all private vehicles to electric power looks to be at most 50% and probably significantly less.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: Overlooked Problem? / submarines

This discussion of submarine technology is fascinating but almost entirely irrelevant. In general the military's 'economics is not an issue' approach makes their choice of expensive toys a poor guide for the rest of us. I mean you don't see ordinary people non-Americans driving around in Humvees.

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Microsoft's 3D Jedi phone explored

Francis Boyle
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Re: Microsoft can't design a UI anymore...

Cheap? Do they have a version of Photoshop that charges them every time the apply a drop shadow? The flat thing is Microsoft trying to do stylish and failing miserably because it's just not in their DNA.

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Francis Boyle
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I was going to comment "Cue relevant Douglas Adams comment, you know the one" but you beat me to it. Maybe we should have an index to save time. I think this should be number three or four after the bit about the whale and the marketing department of the Sirius Cybernetic Corporation and whatever that other one is that you happen to like.

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PHP flaws allowed God mode access to top smut site

Francis Boyle
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Let me fix that for you

You'd have to be a fairly serious pr0nophile to get to the point where you need to login to a free pornsite wity a name that isn't something like Chet Rockhard.

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Cryptography vs. bigotry: The debate Australia needs to have

Francis Boyle
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"Huh? You wrote 600+ words on something that hasn't happened."

Yeah, I just don't get why everyone's talking about this Trump guy.

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40 years ago today the US govt sent a taxpayer-funded robot to invade an alien hostile world

Francis Boyle
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Re: And the lesson is...

I don't think amanfromMars was around then.

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After Monday's landing, SpaceX wants to do it in triplicate

Francis Boyle
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Re: We already covered this

Yeah, but Mythbusters busted that one.

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Go catch Pokemon in this, nerds: Our space neighborhood of 1.2m galaxies mapped in 3D

Francis Boyle
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I recognise the hand of that well known cosmologist Jackson Pollock

And here I was thinking that the universe was all sort of melty, like a Dali.

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Ivory tower drops water bombs on dumpster fire

Francis Boyle
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The only successful things about Trump

are his ego and his choice of father.

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Australian Information Industries Association*: you're not the future of democracy, so please shut up

Francis Boyle
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Nice try

but I read the article to the end. The fraud there involved a candidate getting his friends/supporters to pretend they lived in his electorate so they could vote for him. Nothing to do with multiple voting and not something an ID card would likely prevent (though the existing system did so easily).

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Student Loans Company burns £50 million in IT project superfail

Francis Boyle
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Re: £50m - why not simply pay the fees?

Or simply make the loan a tax liability. I like your idea better but sadly these days it seems almost utopian. (And I say that as a beneficiary of a free tertiary education - one more reason to feel old).

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Tupperware vehemently denies any link to storage containerisation

Francis Boyle
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Kudos To El Reg

for standing up to the terrible threat of losing a layer's trust.

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Revolutionary Brit-made SABRE hybrid rocket engine to burn in 2020

Francis Boyle
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Re: My first thought was:

"The future's looking shiny."

But keep in mind it's only three years till we get replicants.

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Boffins boggle, baffled by blobs deep inside the Earth

Francis Boyle
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Nonsense

There was never any Doctor Who episode like that!

Now Silurian cities, that's not silly at all!

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The Great Brain Scan Scandal: It isn’t just boffins who should be ashamed

Francis Boyle
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There's a grand tradition of distinguished physicists approaching retirement deciding to solve the problems of philosophy. The general response of philosophers to there ideas is a long the lines of "well that was a good solution when Aristotle/Hume/Kant/Russel first proposed it".

@You aint sin me, roit

"As for Hawking's physical limitations... neither of us know, but maybe he spends a lot of time just "thinking"."

That's the problem: Philosophy is done by thinking but you can no more do real philosophy by "just thinking" than you can do real science without peer review. Without the social structures of science even the greatest genius will end up a crank the way Newton and Tesla did. When the genius is a scientist trying to do philosophy the problem is only exacerbated.

As for philosophers not understanding science: It's pretty common for academic philosophers to have degrees in other disciplines. Unsurprisingly, physics is a favourite in that respect.

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Science non-fiction: Newly spotted alien world bathes in glow of three stars

Francis Boyle
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Re: Where did the 16 million year planetary age come from?

Legal? It's fine if you put in on page three of The Three Suns.

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New DNA 'hard drive' could keep files intact for millions of years

Francis Boyle
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Encode it into your DNA and you would be able to produce it on demand (at least if you're male).

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Scientists want you to know how to have sex with a hyper-long dong

Francis Boyle
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Re: Let's just go right off the rails with this one...

Look, either you're committed to "boldly going* where no man has gone before", or not.

*It is left as an exercise for the reader to make the appropriate substitution.

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Francis Boyle
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Like the Reg

ever needed an excuse to report on boffing-stick boffinry. But the delay is indeed worrying. This should be "hold the front page stuff".

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Behold the ROBOT RECTUM... medics' relief

Francis Boyle
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Re: I could do that job

I don't think those German speciality videos were approved for medical training purposes.

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Etch a stretch: 3D NAND layer cake flop leads to 'string stacking'

Francis Boyle
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Re: TEM?

I was going to suggest lasers - we just need to work out how to genetically engineer tiny sharks.

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Lindsay Lohan ‘happy’ to turn on Kettering

Francis Boyle
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Re: "Lindsay happy to turn on Kettering"

Didn't you read the article? It clearly states she will be "flicking the switch" which rules out approximately 50% of the population.

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Mystery black hole hides by curbing its appetite

Francis Boyle
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Roche lobe overflow

They were good in the seventies but these days they're just treading water. Or am I thinking of another band.

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Jupiter's throwing a firework party for Juno – and Hubble's peeking in

Francis Boyle
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No it's an

iPlanet.

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Singapore Airlines 777 catches fire after engine alarm

Francis Boyle
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Re: camera phones

"Singaporeans"

Yes, I have no idea where they learned the stiff upper lip thing but since it's also known as sang froid I suppose it was from the French.

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Holy kittens! YouTube screens go blank

Francis Boyle
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Re: second person plural

Struth mate, everyone knows the second person plural is "youse".

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Cloudian clobbers car drivers with targeted ads

Francis Boyle
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Time to buy a google car

and paint the windscreen black.

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Musk's Tesla to buy Musk's SolarCity for US$2.8 billion

Francis Boyle
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Re: Duchessing

Are you sure that it not in fact a ridiculous term for an even more ridiculous sex act? Because I'm not.

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Major Tim Peake comes home to a gastronaut's Sunday roast

Francis Boyle
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Makes a change from protein pills at least

Yeah, now Major T's safely on terra firma I'm flogging the Space Oddity jokes for all their worth.

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How's your driving, Elon? Musk tweets that Tesla Model S 'floats'

Francis Boyle
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Re: I would like to know

Electric powered azimuth thrusters are common enough and manage to spend their entire working lives underwater without problems. The seals on the the Tesla's motors might are probably not that good but good enough to protect against constant road water should be good enough for a few seconds immersion.

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Tim Peake to return to Earth after six months floating around in space

Francis Boyle
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It was worth £80M

just so someone could say "ground control to Major Tim". (Someone did say that didn't they?)

Seriously, I'm not British so I don't have a stake in this but doesn't it come down to whether you want to play with the big boys or sulk in the corner? Because, for the big boys 80 million is small change. Go ask Elon.

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Francis Boyle
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It's and old joke

but beautifully expressed.

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Bezos' Blue Origin's first live Webcast a no-explosion yawnfest

Francis Boyle
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No explosions, no failures, and no rapid unscheduled disassembly?

Nothing launched into space, either. <Musk fanboy mode off>

Sorry - couldn't resist the bait!

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Dad of student slain in Paris terror massacre sues Google, Twitter, Facebook for their 'material support' of ISIS

Francis Boyle
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Re: That linked article is nonsense

"For what its worth, they aren't really a problem anyway."

You might have a different view if you lived in Syria.

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Francis Boyle
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That linked article is nonsense

No one made any effort to point out that Dylann Roof didn't represent Christians or white people because no one was saying it in the first place. "Lone wolf" or "deranged" is the default interpretation when a white person engages in act act of mass violence even where their ideological motivations are quite explicit.

For what it's worth I agree that Islamacists would be much less of a problem without the illegal meddling of powerful states (including the Saudis) in the affairs of third world countries.

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Francis Boyle
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"As to whether mountain bikers are terrorists?"

I've seen some of their videos. Bloody terrifying (or anyone afraid of heights at least).

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Francis Boyle
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Re: Some points to consider.

"They remove some of this propaganda material from the terrorist, but not everything, calming that some of it doesn't break their rules."

This just as it should be. If you want to say that ISIS represents the "pinnacle of human efforts to live as Allah demands we should" you're exercising freedom of speech. If you say "come join ISIS and help us kill infidels" you're recruiting for a terrorist organisation. Sure, sometimes it's a fine line and people will often get it wrong but making the effort is what democracies do and dictatorships have no interest in doing.

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Francis Boyle
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I think he should

Look, I'm not anti-Google. I accept that it does in fact "quickly remove videos violating these policies when flagged by our users". But not wanting to look evil is fairly week motivation. The threat of lawsuits is a better one (even when they fail as I suspect this one will). And why is a company with the most powerful content detection algorithms in the world relying on users to flag objectionable videos. I suspect some extra motivation is in fact required.

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Apple faces Beijing blackout for iPhone 6

Francis Boyle
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Who'd have thought

Beijing and Texas would have so much in common?

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Chinese loan sharks seek salacious selfies as collateral

Francis Boyle
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Re: Monty Python had this sorted 45 years ago ...

Judging by how absurdly young Michael Palin looks, I'm afraid so.

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Thief dresses as Apple Store drone, walks off with $16,000 in iGear

Francis Boyle
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Re: $763 worth of gear

Of course, here's quite likely to be repaired phones in a repair room along (probably considerably more) unrepaired ones. If the thief managed to grab just the good ones it suggest some degree of inside knowledge.

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Sophos U-turns on lack of .bat file blocking after El Reg intervenes

Francis Boyle
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I noticed that

Then I thought "Sometimes an article needs to be manager-compliant".

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