* Posts by Andrew Heenan

54 posts • joined 9 Aug 2007

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Cuba bound? Edward Snowden leaves Hong Kong

Andrew Heenan
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Tragic For Cuba

If - as rumoured - Snowden hopes to travel via Cuba, I hope they refuse him entry; to involve themselves in this affair would give their enemies in the US an excuse to extend their ludicrous and cruel sanctions yet further.

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Peak Facebook: British users lose their Liking for Zuck's ad empire

Andrew Heenan
Coffee/keyboard

Facebook: Bad Faith

It's not the ads that's the problem, it's facebook.

I can ignore ads, and I use Adblock (as all intelligent people do).

But they allow 'members' to spam you via more gullible friends, they reset privacy settings to 'default' (ie not private at all) every time they 'improve' privacy, and worst of all, you can't use most of the third party gizmos, because to do so requires you to allow them access to ALL your contacts etc., etc.

Facebook is nasty. I use it, because that's the only place that many of contacts will use - but as soon as there's a viable rival, we'll all be off. Until then, I'll use it less and less.

Weirdly, the thing that really annoys me is that when I used to use FB to post on discussions outside FB, they always included my age -and there was never a way to stop them.

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London Congestion Charge becomes CO2 tax

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Andrew Heenan
Paris Hilton

In the peak hour, one bus takes the place of 69 cars - FACT!

Ignoramus said: "If the bus is absolutely full. And is an exceptionally large double-decker, packed with standing passengers. And the cars were to contain the driver only."

Most peak hour buses carry 80+ people (I know, I've been there). The vast majority of cars carry one person. Look out your window, and you'll see. Few 'zone' buses are single deck, except for 400 bendies; 100+ passengers.

All London buses (except a very few tourist Routemasters) are less than 10 years old, and pollute much, much, much less than 10 cars, let alone 69.

But don't let the facts get in your way, will you?

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Andrew Heenan
Coat

Too many buses? Um, No.

"Even if they turned every street in London into a cycle lane there STILL would be a problem......too many buses."

In the peak hour, one bus takes the place of 69 cars. Buses aren't part of the problem, they are part of the solution.

Think about it. Go on. Try, at least ;o)

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Andrew Heenan
Coat

Let's See Boris Do Better!

1. "towards green issues and away from actual congestion charging."

2. "The mainstream charge remains the same"

nuff said.

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Europe hails foothold in space

Andrew Heenan
Happy

@ Mike Richards

@ Mike - Thanks for that ... they can keep on spending my cash, then!

At least for now - though I can see fights ahead, as 2016 gets nearer!

@ Dimitrov - And you should see the family hammer!

@ Rob - We Brits certainly whinge most about the investment, but we also pay. Some direct money goes in, and I believe the EU adds more, in our name.

As an 'enthusiast' since the Goons recorded A Russian Love Song and Russia launched the Sputnik, I don't begrudge a penny that's spent wisely. Trouble with Europe, is the word 'Wisely' has been deleted from every dictionary (along with 'gullible').

"There is a Russian satellite moon over Arkansas, Mr President"

"Thank heaven it is not over America

Coulda been George W!"

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Andrew Heenan
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Waste of Cash?

According to Wikipedia - and they have many 'insider' contributors on 'space' matters - the International Space Station is only planned to be operating until 2016. Now, we can probably add a few years to that, but it still means the whole thing is just eating taxpayers money.

Why can't they keep the darn thing up there 'forever' - just replacing bits as they become unreliable or obsolete? Isn't that the whole point of modular building?

After all, my grandmother's broom has been in the family for generations ... it's had three new heads and many new handles - but it's the same broom.

Dumping the lot after a decade is dangerous, stupid ... and a gross waste of my cash!

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Mobile subscribers showered with spam

Andrew Heenan
Go

Operator Problem

Why is it that spam is allowed to be a consumer issue? Whether email or mobile, the problem could be dealt with easily and cheaply if there was a will to do it.

With emails, I can delete 300 spam as easily as three (and gmail seperates them out for me, at least!). But with a mobile, I'll be wasting time and effort (and possibly cash) just keeping the stuff at bay. So people will begin to select operator on the basis of spam control.

May the best company win.

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Vodafone CEO finds wireless too complicated

Andrew Heenan
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For the sake of platform simplicity ...

"But by that logic we should all just accept the inevitable and cast our desktop Macs into the ocean, for the sake of platform simplicity."

Why do you spoil all your stuff with childish conclusions?

Voda has a point, and one that could be discussed constructively, not dismissed in this way. You may not like their CEO, but he isn't opening his mouth just for you to get cheap laughs.

At this moment, the number of mobile platforms is increasing almost exponentially (AOL?!!), and life is not only more complex, but more expensive - and sooner or later, the consumer will pay.

So why not delete the cr*p, and start again with a serious discussion. Thanks!

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Germans to blast fish into space

Andrew Heenan

Running out of meaningful things to do?

NASA hasn't reached the 'celebrity barrier' yet. Fish are thought to have an attention span measurable in seconds, rather than the z-list nano seconds, so the current experiment may have merit.

Once they start sending meaningless celebrities into space as an experiment in 'social interaction', then all credibility will be lost. They are probably negotiating with Paris Hilton's agent and any male rock star too cocained-up to say no, as we speak.

That day will come, as evidenced by the trend toward sending items up for the astronauts 'comfort', like gymnasium modules and aquariums. Next will be 'art', and Paris is rumoured to be holding out for a pink space suit (the space-fashion equivalent of hi-viz).

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Andrew Heenan
Linux

Pigs In Space

I bet the Muppets wish they'd had more imagination!

But seriously, the only way to know for sure - in light of the erudite and incisive advice above - would be to include one of theose 'Fish Castles' in the bowl and see if they manage to swim through the arch while weightless.

My worry is how the poor things will manage the manual re-entry procedures (if necessary), and how they'll cope with extra vehicular activity should running repairs be required.

And if they are German Fishtronauts, might they be taken ill (but not life threatening) while in space?

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French motorwonk savages hybrid cars

Andrew Heenan
Happy

So Citreon and Peugot Don't Do Hybrids?

Even the French are entitled to their opinion. It would be nice to see some logic - and maybe some evidence - to support their assertions, but you can't have everything.

It won't stop the development of hydrogen fuel cells, as there is a misinformed craze for hydrogen vehicles especially in countries that don't do hybrids.

Of course it's a temporary step -but as all 'pure green' energy-saving vehicles have thus far been a joke, we need SOMETHING to lower carbon output until science catches up.

Back the lab guys, and stop whining!

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Seabed cables will be fixed by next week

Andrew Heenan
Alien

Neat cover job ...

... but we don't have to believe it, spittle or not.

And as none of the cables have been repaired yet, you don't KNOW that they were 'innocent incidents' do you?

And you wouldn't tell us if you did.

So if I had a tin foil hat (which I don't) or a surplus of spittle (sorry, not me), I'd be perfectly entitled to continue in my delusions, the only change being that I'd now recognise you as a servant of the CIA.

No surprises there, then ;o)

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Germans demand Nokia return funding

Andrew Heenan

What Fun!

Oh Dear, someone standing up to a company that is doing what capitalist companies do!

OK, they are moving on quicker than some, but economic migration is a fact of industrial life. - as that locality knew when they landed Nokia in the first place.

I guess there's some local politicians up for re-election, and happy to spend - sorry, waste - public funds in a futile court case to establish their 'crusader' reputation.

I'll bet Nokia lawyers are rereading the small print, however - especially the difference between "create jobs" and "employ people" - it would be funny if their use of contract labour made them break the terms of the subsidy!

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Turning a Nokia phone into a hotspot

Andrew Heenan
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Only a Matter of Time ...

Free? Onlky until service providers find a way to charge. I'll bet Voda has a team of top engineers on the case as we speak. Plus don't forget the slogan "The future is bright, the future is overweight bills". It's virgin on the ridiculous for Nokia to lure users into such a trap.

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EU to ban the patio heaters that ate the planet. Not.

Andrew Heenan
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EU Fiddles While Rome Burns?

Or was it Robbie Burns?

Truth is, of course, that the Crusade Against Patio Heaters has nothing whatsoever to do with saving the planet - it's all about spiting smokers who dare to keep warm after being expelled from public buildings.

So long as toilet rolls are made from bleached virgin paper, bottles are recycled rather than being reused, and frequent fliers are taxed less than rail travellers, then 'saving the planet' is a talking shop, not a call to action.

And patio heaters should be round about 1,538 on any intelligent list of priorities.

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Vodafone takes Ofcom to court over number porting

Andrew Heenan
Paris Hilton

Has Anyone Been Prosecuted?

Seems to me that if slamming is the issue, then a few prosecutions might focus the mind better.

Someone above mentioned that the companies should discourage it - of course that's right. But a few criminal records for fraud would make people think twice.

This has happened with utility slamming (though that's more often incompetence than fraud - and I know, it's happened to me twice: never live in a converted flat in London!)

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Andrew Heenan
Coat

Up To A Point ... @Mike

Interesting argument, and I'm certainly not in a position to argue.

But I don't see why you've elevated "5 days" to become some magic number that cannot be challenged.

Would four days really open the floodgates to slamming? Three days? What?

The 'minimum safe period' is at the heart of your argument, but you say nothing to justify the minimum being five.

Intuitively, it seems that two hours is fairly loopy and utterly unnecessary, but in this Star Trek age, a couple of days seems reasonable. Unless there's a reason why not?

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Giant solar plants in Negev could power Israel's future

Andrew Heenan
Happy

Time To Make Peace First?

Electricity storage, even on a small scale, is pretty inefficient and expensive. Doing it for a country is a pretty naive suggestion, even from a scientist.

'Twould be much more efficient to build an alliance of nations around the globe, to maintain a constant supply; even though transmission would also involve some waste.

It would, at least, be possible.

"Atomkraft? Nein, Danke!" - Bring Back The Sixties, All Is Forgiven!

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Dreamhost billing cock-up shocks customer bank accounts

Andrew Heenan
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They Got me Too ...

... But I'm happy to accept their freely-offered apology and grovelling.

How many other companies not only hold their hands up, but actually apologise?

And it's their first serious c*ck-up in ten years, which also compares well with most companies I connect with.

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Android struggles to life

Andrew Heenan
Coat

Do Get Your Facts Right!

"The expectation has been that third-party companies would spring up to supply those, but until now there has been little evidence of that."

No, and if you read the copious news articles, you'll see that none are expected until late spring / summer.

It seems a tad churlish to sneer at something that was only ever supposed to happen in your own imagination.

But hey, don't let the facts get in the way of a boring story!!

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Linux squeezes into connected devices

Andrew Heenan
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And Your Point Is ... ?

OpenMoko may - or may not - be a Great Step forward. But it says nothing at all about Google's Android initiative - which was never going to produce results this side of summer.

So this weird and slanted article tells us much more about your petty fears and prejudices than it does about technology.

If you want to vent your spleen at Google, be my guest. But try to more honest about it, huh?

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Neo1973: long-distance contender to Apple and Google?

Andrew Heenan
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You Cannot Be Serious!

Neo1973: any-distance contender to Apple and Google? - in your dreams.

And sadly, the article gives no clue as to why you think it's up there with the big boys.

Do you have a personal interest, or is it just whimsy?

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Why there will never be another GSM

Andrew Heenan
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Giving Away The Golden Goose?

"These will be perpetual licences which can be sold on or sub-let to other users."

I cannot imagine a more stupid proposal for a fast-changing market. Who knows what the future will bring? How can it be sensible to give control in perpetuity to a commercial enterprise?

What sane government sells a source of income that could keep the country afloat?

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Pope tells astronomers to pack up their telescopes

Andrew Heenan
Coat

Is The Pope Catholic?

"Another attempt to prove that the sun and planets go round the earth by ignoring the bleedin' obvious."

You mean they don't?

Next you'll be saying that Terry Pratchett made up the discworld.

Oh Ye Of Little Faith!

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Kent council approves 'cleaner' coal-fired plant

Andrew Heenan
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Bring on the clean coal power stations - Yeah, right.

This is actually the best news whales have had for years, as it will bring ordinary people - who care about their children (even if unborn and undreamt of) - back into the activist role.

There is no such thing as a 'clean' coal station, and probably never will be.

We all want creature comforts ... but look at the price we'll all pay.

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Japan confirms world's fastest maglev plan

Andrew Heenan
Thumb Up

re. How efficient?

"How efficient is a maglev compared to a normal diesel engine?

In theory, "much, much, much better"; in practice, "much, much better" - but then, if you choose diesel to compare with, that's not much of a challenge!

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Honda shows off space-dwarf robot butler capability

Andrew Heenan
Coat

A Sad Day For The Urban Robot

"By the end of 2010s, we'd like to see these robots working at every street corner of the city"

I don't think the register should be celebrating the advent of barely-teen panhandling robots.

Will they be able to sell the Big Issue?

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Microsoft offers $300m for web-washing ad campaign

Andrew Heenan
Coat

"Windows May Be Broken ...

... But that makes us a Breath of Fresh Air"

Honesty in advertising?

I doubt it!

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China celebrates first lunar pictures

Andrew Heenan
Stop

It wasn't 'foreign reports' ...

... it was Beijing Youth Daily that said in February 2004 that China plans to land a man on the Moon by 2020.

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Top US engineer in piss-off-everybody car fuel solution

Andrew Heenan
Coat

Zubrin argues from a very simple perspective?

"Take away the money and the large-scale terrorism stops because they can't afford the equipment to blow shit up. It's really that simple. But I suppose that makes me a bigot..."

No, but it does suggest you are poorly informed. If you look a little wider into terrorism - including virtually all the bombs within the US, you'll find no international sponsor.

BTW, Stating the fact that Saudi Arabia is the source of many terrorism dollars is not bigotry, it's simple honesty; the evidence, for those who choose to look, has been widely available for many years.

But saying that fact is not the same thing as using that info to launch an anti-Muslim broadside. THAT's bigotry. And that's what he's doing.

Bush-ites are scared to confront Saudi (as is the Brit government); fomenting against ALL Muslims is a cowardly and stupid workaround. If this guy REALLY cared about the issues he claims to care about, he'd be arguing that bombing Saudi Arabia would be much more effective than bombing Iran; both routes are pretty bloody stupid, but if you want to bomb, as the RAF used to say, pick the right target. But bigotry is cheaper, I guess.

I find it sad the the 'war on terrorism' [sic] seems to have just two fronts; fostering anti-Muslim sentiment and demonising Cuba, neither of which is likely (in my oh so humble opinion) to achieve peace. Or anything else.

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Andrew Heenan
Coat

Once a bigot, always ...

... A Bigot.

Just because he has all those degrees, and knows a little about energy, does not automatically qualify him as a political commentator.

He has a great command of 'facts' - but any bigot can select facts that support his bigotry.

Most of the twaddle isn't worth squabbling about, so let's just demolish his central argument, as any 8-year-old could:

Of course it's true that Saudi Arabia is the main sponsor of Muslim terrorism. That's no secret. But removing the prime source of cash would not remove the terrorist organizations, or their motivation, or their ability to recruit. There many such organizations that have operated successfully for decades on minimal cash.

In fact, removing a source of cash simply provides one more motive. The hungry terrorist is often the most committed to his cause.

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El Reg fires up online standards converter

Andrew Heenan
Coat

One Glaring Omission

We all know that the amount of beauty required to launch one ship is the milliHelen, based on the metric unit the Helen, the face that launched a thousand ships.

I've searched your conversion device from top to left and bottom to right, and find no trace.

Please remedy this with all speed; launch date is set for Tuesday week.

How many vultures will I need?

And are they Gift Vultures or Rook Tokens?

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Kindle ain't no e-book reader

Andrew Heenan
Coat

Interesting article, but ...

... the device won't pass the "Heenan Test", and so will fail.

The "Heenan Test"?

First proposed in 1998, it goes like this - "No device will replace the paperback book until it is not only easily updateable and rechargeable, but is also capable of being read in the bath.

This looks good, and two out of three ain't bad. But it still don't cut it.

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Sony CEO: format war in 'stalemate'

Andrew Heenan
Stop

Largely Symbolic My Foot!

The two sides are NOT fighting for the prestige of winning, though I agree that there is no real issue about significant technological superiority.

The two sides are fighting for the many millions of dollars that the winner will win - and the loser will not.

Calling that symbolic is a serious misrepresentation of the DVD industry and the motivation behind its progress.

You'll be telling us next that regionalization is for 'user convenience' :o)

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Facebook mounts Tupperware-style ads push

Andrew Heenan
Coat

There's Two Objections to Ads ...

... Principle & Practice.

Those who object on principle will kick up a stink, and if it appears big enough (as if!), then some kind of 'opt out' may appear.

What is more likely is that the 'practice' of heavy-handed ad insertion will do long term damage, loosening loyalty, speeding up the inevitable moment that some new, even kewler [sic] site takes the lead.

Once M$ got their foot in the door, subtlety went out the window; watch NBC's alternative to youtube fail for the same reason; the Suit Corporations are not capable of resisting the 'we want MORE money, and we want it NOW' types in the Ad sales department.

Suit Corporations ALWAYS kill the Golden Goose, and NEVER learn their error.

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Nope, it's not a Gphone

Andrew Heenan

Say It Ain't So ...

"So, it's intolerable that the same country that produced all this has trapped its citizens in a backward, stifling system when it comes to the next great technology platform, the cellphone."

Quite.

All we need now is someone with Google's courage to take on the DVD regionalization, and the other 50,000 restrictive practices that survive. Mobile phone tie-ups are hardly unique in the Land of the Free ... or any place else!!

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Googlewhack trick used to slip junk mail past spam filters

Andrew Heenan
Coat

Slow, Slow Symantec

These 'search result' URLs have been appearing for at least 6 months, and have been blocked - at least by gmail - for much of that time.

Where have Symantec been?

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Prince's anti-YouTube crusade halted by American mommy

Andrew Heenan
Coat

you have to defend copyright

"surely the fact that you create something and it can be proven is enough that the copyright exists."

Not that simple. If you fail to act on copyright theft, you provide a precedent: "He allowed her to copy his song so he can't stop me", which is why Elvis, Karen and Frank reach out from beyond the grave to stop minor infringements.

It's all a matter of where the line is drawn, and how sober the judge happens to be. Every time you play "My Sweet Lord" in public, the royalties you pay end up at "He's So Fine", in a memorable case from last century.

In this case, however, I'd argue that "No Reasonable Person" would see it as copyright theft; so the question, now is:

"Is The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As Whatever, a reasonable person?"

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Andrew Heenan
Stop

Time For An Apology

Sad, isn't it?

The "Let's Attack YouTube Brigade" need to grow up.

And The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As whatever needs to publicly apologise for being a silly little boy.

Will he?

I hope so - because if he doesn't, this sad event will haunt him.

This is A Fact, Hereafter Referred To as a Fact, Hereafter Referred To as a Fact, Hereafter Referred To as a Fact.

Trust me.

You Heard It Here First.

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No-humping 20mph limit for London

Andrew Heenan

Title

"If the machinery can cope with temporary interference, different measures may be required; but there will be ways to beat the camera, despite the Daily Mail's gloomy prognostications."

Oh yes; there'll always be motorists happy to risk killing the occasional child who dares to get in their way!

And why sneer at Ken?

No, PLEASE don't answer that - I know why.

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Google launches YouTube video-blocking contraption

Andrew Heenan
Alert

Does YouTube Deserve a Slow Death?

I don't think so - and I don't think rogue nations' disrespect for copyright is a "freedom" to be encouraged.

I'm sure Google will have teething problems, but I hope it comes right, and finally makes possible a balance between the rights of content makers and us consumers.

Good Luck to Google!

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Only Sky can save digital TV

Andrew Heenan
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And What About The Consumer ...

You bleat about Poor Little Sky being squeezed by the ground based services (not all of which are public service, BTW) ... and your solution?

Give Sky a monopoly.

Don't you think consumers have a right to resist when they are being steamrollered into signing up for a service with dubious benefit?

Trust me, you don't need digital TV to follow Corrie, or the news, or even Lazytown.

And there's zero on Sky to send us running to pay their extortionate fees.

But as a Sky fan, I suppose the consumer view never entered your head?

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Nuclear accident messier than we thought

Andrew Heenan

Surprise, surprise.

What on Earth would you expect?

Openness? Honesty?

Wake me up when you have a 'Man Bites Dog' story; statements of the mind-numbingly obvious don't take us forward!

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Yahoo! Teams! With! eBay! And! PayPal! To! End! Phishing!

Andrew Heenan

About Bl**dy time too!

I'm glad that somethings being done - but it's shame they use it for self promotion. It's too important for that.

Time that ALL the players got together and agreed a way forward. That's the only way it'll work!

I don't mind 2,3 even four standards, so long as they don't work against each other.

But one is better!

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PC superstore puts Microsoft on sale for under £150

Andrew Heenan

Looks Like A Bargain But ...

I reckon if I wait a bit, the price will drop below £100.00

And think about it - if M$ is £100, that makes Ask about £5, and Lycos about 3p.

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Scots tell ET to eff off

Andrew Heenan

Grow Up, Do.

Isn't it time the register stopped encouraging pissed idiots to damage other people's property?

Are you really that obsessed with the 17-24 age group?

Maybe we should complain to your advertisers.

Just grow up and stop wasting my time.

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Google malware watchdogs bite mom-and-pop shops

Andrew Heenan

So Why Aren't They THANKING Google.

Every example in your story WAS using malware; albeit in ads, hit counters (never trust them!) or other third party stuff.

Since Google, each site has had the opportunity to clean up, and remove the cr*p.

All have done so - suggesting that all agree with Google's findings (as would all sentient beings).

So instead of whining about how hard done by they all are, why aren't they thanking Google?

There is a case for arguing that Google should send a note to 'postmaster@***.com on each occasion ... but how many of them monitor that - or even display a working email address?

Google's malware labeling is a major plus - and no responsible site would use such silly innuendo to undermine it. Real 'red top' stuff.

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Salesforce shuns Google Docs route (for now)

Andrew Heenan

Dog Bites Man? - I don't think so.

This really isn't news.

If I send you a press release, will you write a story on "Londoner isn't about to buy a Snickers bar this week, despite seeing a boxful at the supermarket"

Get a grip, and stop wasting our time.

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