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* Posts by Mike Moyle

906 posts • joined 8 Feb 2007

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This'll end well: US govt says car-to-car jibber-jabber will SAVE lives

Mike Moyle
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Re: Never trust a 'Merkin to build a roundabout.

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.507584,-0.127719,3a,75y,90h,90t/data=!3m5!1e1!3m3!1sHoEB2N_OUWXqydIeM_0VtQ!2e0!3e5

Stupid Americans... Oh, wait... Did *WE* design this rotary with the traffic lights...?

As to the one that you showed -- Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C.; you can blame the French for that! Pierre Charles L'Enfant designed it in a grid, with diagonal streets radiating from large open squares spaced around the city. Which worked passably well for horses and carriages, but not so well for lots and LOTS of cars. Rotaries were the only real answer. And with lots of cars, and lots of pedestrians wanting to use the greenspaces in the middle of those areas, yeah... Short of constructing pedestrian over- or under-passes to go from the outside of the rotary to the park in the middle, stoplights at pedestrian crossings were really the best solution in a high-traffic area like that.

Specifically regarding Dupont Circle: Given the limitations imposed by L'Enfant's original street layout, there are only two streets on which you can unerringly pass through the intersection: Massachusetts and Connecticut Avenues. Mass. Ave. (The one that runs from 10 o'clock to 2 o'clock) uses the inner ring of the rotary.You can only ENTER the inner ring FROM Massachusetts Ave., and you can only EXIT it ONTO Massachusetts Ave., so it's not like you don't know where you're coming out -- you're coming out on the same street that you started on, going in the same direction, just on the the other side of the Circle. While one COULD enter from one of the other streets and veer into the inner ring at one of the Mass. Ave. entrances, you'd pretty much have to ACTIVELY turn into it -- the "bump-outs" to the outer ring at the Mass. Ave. exits and the divider between the two are fairly obvious guides. With Connecticut Ave. (The next street clockwise from Mass. Ave.), you can either ENTER the rotary, or -- if you simply want to continue down Connecticut -- pass UNDER it and come out on the other side, staying on Connecticut the whole time. Considering that L'Enfant's plan put FIVE major thoroughfares crossing in that square, it actually seems a rather elegant solution.

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Chomp that sausage: Brits just LOVE scoffing a Full Monty

Mike Moyle
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Re: A question for our British friends...

The only reason for cinnamon on French Toast (we never used it, ourselves, but some families apparently did) is if you were using that flavorless, bastardized concoction, "Pancake Syrup", instead of the pure maple syrup.

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Mike Moyle
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Re: A question for our British friends...

http://www.batchelors.ie/

http://www.heinz.co.uk/

That's... horrifying.

THESE are baked beans (although, personally, I'd say they could use more chunks of onion and salt pork in there, but that may just be family preference):

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-k72CLKUzO3o/UmlEhESaHnI/AAAAAAAAEDg/ZAFtz3c03rI/s1600/IMG_0359.jpg

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Mike Moyle
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A question for our British friends...

I recently went to a restaurant (stateside) which offered what was claimed to be an Irish breakfast -- eggs, back bacon, sausage, fried potatoes, fried tomatoes, toast and baked beans. Now, I grew up near Boston, MA, so, to me, beans are supposed to be done up al dente in a rich brown -- almost black -- molasses and brown sugar base. The beans that appeared before me seemed to have been stewed until mushy in some sort of tomato-based soup. Was this abomination just the restaurant having a go, or is this really what people over on that side of the pond consider "baked beans"?

...'Cause I gotta say -- seeing those things called "baked beans" nearly put me off the rest of my meal!

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LOHAN acquires aircraft arboreal avoidance algorithm acronyms

Mike Moyle
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NUTS

Nowt Up Trees System

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World's only flyable WWII Lancaster bombers meet in Lincs

Mike Moyle
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Ferrying planes...

I suspect that my dad's crew would have LOVED to only have to ferry their plane to England during the war. Ferrying B-25 Mitchell medium bombers from the states to India was a long and dangerous haul, even with the reduced risk of being shot down on the trip over. I recall him mentioning (I think) stops in Venezuela, Rio, Ascension Island, Cape Town... And I know I'm missing a good few.

The standard joke was that, if your were carrying maximum fuel and minimum everything else and if you had a good tailwind and your navigator and pilot were on the top of their game, you had just enough fuel to fall 10 feet sort of the runway at Ascension.

Dad was the radio operator and, as the time approached for him to pick up the Ascension radio beacon, everyone was understandably on edge -- there was a LOT of water out there -- and all eyes that weren't busy flying the plane were watching the navigator. Finally, he caught the beacon -- they were coming straight down the beam. As he told it, he first patched the navigator in to his signal so he knew they were on the beam, but he apparently didn't hear it and continued checking and rechecking his maps, tables, and calculations, getting visibly more nervous as time went on. Dad checked his system again -- radio beacon good, patch to navigator good... He was just about to speak up when the nav just grabbed everything on the table up in his arms, screamed "I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!" and threw the whole mess out the hatch.

There was a moment of horrified silence before dad patched everyone else in, so the whole crew could hear the beacon. The nav fell over laughing hysterically at his little joke. How did the others take it? As dad put it, "We almost saved the Japanese the trouble of killing him."

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NASA tests crazytech flying saucer thruster, could reach Mars in days

Mike Moyle
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Re: Questions for rocket scientists:

I'm not a rocket scientist so, being basically lazy, I Googled up this site:

http://www.cthreepo.com/lab/math1/

If I'm doing this right, an acceleration of 0.1G would get you Earth to Mars at nearest approach in 5.5 days and at their farthest, 15 days (plus a bit extra on that last one to avoid taking a straight line and running into the sun).

If you're not in a hurry, or are on tight power rations, accelerating/decelerating @ 0.01G would get you to your destination in 17 and 47 days respectively.

The beauty of constant acceleration, of course, is that -- just like keeping your money in the bank and letting the interest repeatedly compound -- constant acceleration quickly builds on itself to your advantage. So while our 0.1G drive could get us to Mars in between 5 and 15 days, it would get us out to the Jovian moons in something like 20 days, or to Pluto in less than 60. (These are all really quick and dirty averages but I'm really rather abusing the privilege with Pluto, since its orbit is so screwy, but the average should be in there, somewhere.)

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Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate history' story made into TV series

Mike Moyle
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"We want to control every part of your lives," and "No Jewish state should be allowed to defend itself"?

Doesn't sound left-wing at all, to me. Unless you consider the Nazis liberals, that is...

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Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers

Mike Moyle
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Re: Maybe ongoing payback for Israel bad to China and it's trading partners e.g Iran.

"Semite is a member of any of various ancient and modern peoples originating in southwestern Asia, including the Akkadians, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Arabs..."

Or, as a Jewish friend of mine once said, "I wouldn't mind the anti-Semites if they were only anti-ALL-the-Semites!"

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MonkeyParking FLINGS AWAY San Francisco service

Mike Moyle
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" 'Our mission is to get rid of circling the block turning a random parking process into a predictable one, saving people time while also reducing traffic congestion and generated pollution,' the firm said in a statement announcing the shutdown."

Easily solved: Produce an app that allows a user to push a GPS-determined address -- and nothing else -- that gets, in turn, pushed to anyone using the app in that area.

Trust the "Sharing Economy", and all that!

Mission accomplished!

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Rockall batters plucky Brit adventurer

Mike Moyle
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Coat

Re: "Those seagulls will be start to look awfully tempting soon then"

I assume they would have by the time he got near the 60 days, but I expect that right now he's more interested in food.

Wait...

What...?

Never mind.

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Retiring Reg hack explains how bass playing = tech reporting

Mike Moyle
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Ave atque vale

You will be missed, sir. I've enjoyed your writing from the MacAddict days to the present. It's been fun.

Now get out there and enjoy your semi-retirement. (And, if you should ever decide to occasionally downgrade it to a demi-semi-, or even a hemi-demi-semi-retirement in order to write the occasional opinion piece, I hope I find out about it.)

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Google Glass gets 2GB of RAM. Think about this. Two gigs of RAM

Mike Moyle
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Re: My biggest reservation

C'mon... This is Google...!

The prompt should be "Hail Hydra!"

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San Francisco issues SMACKDOWN on parking spot sale software

Mike Moyle
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Re: Money For Nothing, Over and Again...

@ Kristian Walsh

"If it's a roadside meter, the next person doesn't have to pay anyway..."

It must be nice, living where you do. A lot of the cities in my neck of the woods that haven't gone the "ticket kiosk and numbered space" route have installed coin-op digital meters with sensors that flip the time remaining to zero when the vehicle leaves the space in front of it.

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Wikipedia insists paid editors reveal their bits in public

Mike Moyle
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"... can threaten the trust of Wikimedia(...)"

DOES anybody actually trust Wikimedia?

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Ohio man cuffed AGAIN for shagging inflatable pool raft

Mike Moyle
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Coat

There's a raft of things wrong with this story.

Sorry...

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Kids hack Canadian ATM during LUNCH HOUR

Mike Moyle
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@ Matt Bryant Re: Mephhead Not an 'hack'.

"...For me, an 'hack' is a tool coded as one part of an attack..."

Perhaps this escapade falls more into the M.I.T. definition of a "hack":

http://hacks.mit.edu

"The word hack at MIT usually refers to a clever, benign, and 'ethical' prank or practical joke, which is both challenging for the perpetrators and amusing to the MIT community (and sometimes even the rest of the world!). Note that this has nothing to do with computer (or phone) hacking (which we call 'cracking')."

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Urine a goldmine for fuel-cell materials: boffins

Mike Moyle
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"...doped collections of carbon atoms recovered from human urine..."

Can I smoke ANY old dope, or does it have to be a specific breed?

"Well, Mr. Johnson, the bad news is that you failed the drug test, so you can't make you an offer for that management position. The good news is that it means that we CAN offer you a position in our battery-manufacturing division!"

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Texan parks quadcopter atop Dallas Cowboys stadium

Mike Moyle
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Mushroom

It'll come back down...

What with the tornados, supercell storms, etc., that roll through Texas in the summertime it'll come down eventually.

All he has to do is hang around outside the stadium during a thunderstorm and wait for it...

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

Mike Moyle
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"Alistair Dabbs is recovering from the dreaded lurgy..."

So the trombone therapy is working, then?

E-e-e-e-e-YAKaboo!

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Samsung wants to 'thingify' your BODY with Simband

Mike Moyle
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Huuuuurrmm...

This sounds like it would be collecting the same sort of data that a polygraph does -- BP, respiration, skin conductivity, heart rate, etc. I'm sure that this would be very convenient for organizations that might want to ask one embarrassing questions, since they wouldn't need to hook you up to any distracting equipment (nor, presumably, ask your permission to do so). Better still, if the wristband stores data locally between uploads to the cloud, they would have a really good set of baseline readings for you.

...Or am I misunderstanding how this thing would work...?

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Apple plots HOME INVASION at WWDC

Mike Moyle
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Echoes...

Thanks, Mr. Ford, but I'll pass on your fancy "au-to-mo-bile". I've got a horse and buggy for local trips and there's a train station right in the center of town.

What's that...? "The technology will change the world in ways you never imagined...?" Don't make me laugh!!

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Come with me if you want a lid: Apple bags Terminator-esque LiquidMetal mobe patent

Mike Moyle
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Re: thermal movement

Actually, I don't think it would matter WHAT the backside/case is made of. My first thought was of an older-style mono body iPod/iPhone case with a lip at the top making a channel around the opening. Pop the glass in and squirt the liquid metal between cover and case. Presto...! You have your glass locked in by a metal gasket locked in a metal channel. The only way to repair any parts would be to break the bezel out and re-install with another MIM machine. Not only would this not be something that the average home hobbyist would be likely to own, it would probably be too expensive for most commercial electronics repair services.

And people complained about the hot-glue-sealed-screen models being hard to repair!

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'Bladdered' Utah couple cuffed in church lawn sex outrage

Mike Moyle
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OTOH

This *WAS* a Catholic parish, after all... If they WANTED to turn kids off of sex, seeing this would probably do it!

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Truck-sized asteroid slips silently between Moon and Earth

Mike Moyle
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What's this thing suddenly coming toward me very fast?

Very, very fast. So big and flat and round, it needs a big wide-sounding name like . . . ow . . . ound . . . round . . . ground! That's it! That's a good name- ground!

I wonder if it will be friends with me?

Hello, Ground!

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OUCH... right in the Androids! Google hit by another antitrust sueball

Mike Moyle
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I dunno about Android...

But I would be immensely amused if the courts forced Google to include a check-box list including Bing, DuckDuckGo, etc., for "Preferred Search Engine" when a new user first started up a Chromebook, in order to avoid antitrust sanctions.

I have to admit that I would get a huge laugh out of that... Does that make me a bad person?

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Shocking 'new iPhone' is also - BZZZZT!! - a Taser-like stun gun

Mike Moyle
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@ Version 1.0

Actually, these are generally regulated by the individual states (and, occasionally, municipalities) and -- since there is no National Rifle Association equivalent to fight for these -- can be HARDER to obtain/carry in some places.

Name: Version 1.0

U.S. Knowledge: Version 0.5 (alpha)

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Denmark dynamited by cunning American Minecraft vandals

Mike Moyle
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Re: I see two possibilities...

@ Ken Hagan -- No... flying a national flag upside-down is -- I believe -- an internationally-recognized distress signal; flipping the colors around is just stupidity.

I'm, honestly, leaning towards option B myself, but -- remembering that the "Mohammed cartoons" controversy started in a Danish newspaper -- I can't COMPLETELY rule out someone seeing a chance to tweak the noses of both Denmark and The Great Satan in one go. I'll admit that I put the odds pretty low on this possibility, but I wouldn't put them at zero.

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Mike Moyle
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I see two possibilities...

Either:

A -- The site pictured was done up by non-Americans and was, literally, a "false-flag" operation, or;

B -- U.S. Minecraft players who are THAT juvenile and jingoistic are too stupid to get their own flag right (Even if the number of stripes is limited by the construction program, at LEAST get the order right with the RED stripes on the top and bottom edges)!

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Behold! World's smallest 3D-printer pen Lix artists into shape – literally

Mike Moyle
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I want!

...But only if there are interchangeable color cartridges. I want to be able to draw in 3D in color.

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Teen jailed for ARMED ROBBERY says he and pals had been inspired by Grand Theft Auto

Mike Moyle
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Re: The "I'm a victim, not a perpetrator!" defense.

Gee, Officer Krupke...

http://www.westsidestory.com/site/level2/lyrics/krupke.html

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Boffins build billion-synapse, three-watt 'brain'

Mike Moyle
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Re: As a matter of interest ....

"I reckon it will be a good decade before these things even approach puberty."

...And then it'll be "Saturn 3" all over again!

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Apple inaugurates free OS X beta program for world+dog

Mike Moyle
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I'm curious...

Is it safe to assume that all of the people here razzing Apple for opening betas of OS X to all and sundry find it equally absurd/abhorrent when Android developers or open-source software developers post their daily/incremental builds for people who want to test them out (or just want to live on the bleeding edge)?

Now, if you want to complain about Apple putting conditions on downloading the betas, THAT could be a fair cop (although I figure, it's their product, they can make the rules on how they release it). OTOH, if you're going to rag on Apple for the public betas then you kind of need to address the other companies who do the same thing. As my old mother used to say, "What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander."

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Patch iOS, OS X now: PDFs, JPEGs, URLs, web pages can pwn your kit

Mike Moyle
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Re: Did they fix the bug where you can't use a Swype keyboard?

Meh -- tried Swype, didn't care for it.

Now, if they'd let me use Swiftkey on my 'Pad... THAT I'd be happy about. S-wype, not so much.

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Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey

Mike Moyle
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Re: Breaking News!!

@ AC

"And we still end up with smarter, better, more liked and more competent leaders than yours."

But they WEREN'T necessarily smarter, better, more liked, or more competent when you were the dominant world power, as the U.S. is now. Seriously -- need we mention how successful you were at ingratiating yourselves to the Africans, Indians, and Chinese in the 19th century...? Now that they no longer have to answer to your government's whims, they like you a lot more. When we are no longer trying to prove anything OUR leaders will magically become smarter, better, more liked and more competent, too.

<signed>

Neither Anonymous nor Coward

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Reg gets sneak peek of Getac's chunky TOUGH AS NAILS 8.1-incher

Mike Moyle
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"but with that dust and splash protection, it’ll certainly prove its worth on the beach."

...So where's the Reg-standard picture of the girl on the beach with the tablet badly Photoshopped in place of the netbook?

Right, El Reg -- Go and write a hundred lines "I will not mention computers on the beach without including the gratuitous picture of the Eee girl."

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Innovation creates instability, you say? BLASPHEMY, you SCUM

Mike Moyle
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...and cows...

As the token Graphics Geek here, I have to toss in the story of a painting professor, originally from Colombia who once spent some time in class discussing his theory of art, which seemed to involve cows. Now, we had seen his work, which didn't SEEM to include pictures of bovines in them so, after a particularly obscure reference, one of the class finally bit the bullet and asked, "Excuse me, professor, but I'm not sure I'm getting it... Cows...?"

"Yes, of course! All art revolves around the conflict between order and cows!"

"Ah...! In English, I think the word you're using is pronounced 'chaos'."

(BTW -- Great Niven reference: Stairway to Heaven/A Matter of Life and Death is one of my all-time favorite movies.)

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UFO, cosmic ray or flasher? NASA rules on Curiosity curiosity

Mike Moyle
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Testing the Sky Beam™

before opening the new MGM Luxor Mars casino.

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Judge rules Baidu political censorship was an editorial right

Mike Moyle
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Interesting...

So, if search results are protected free speech and the companies providing the search functions can't be sued for the results, where does this put torrent-listing sites? They are, after all, (if I understand correctly) nothing but search engines cataloging the torrents. Does that mean that they are (at least in theory) protected?

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FTC: Do SSL properly or we'll shove a microscope up you for decades

Mike Moyle
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Re: Many iOS devices only have wi-fi.

Just to be complete, add "Everyone with a wifi-only Android tablet."

Just sayin', the article notes that it's not just IOS.

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British trolls to face 'tougher penalties' over online abuse

Mike Moyle
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Re: Toughen up?

This is called "blaming the victim", and most civilized people consider it really bad form. It says that trolling/stalking is -- if not actually acceptable (although it does strongly IMPLY that it is) -- at least sufficiently commonplace as to be unexceptional.

The assumption seems to be the classic "If they don't know that it bothers you, they'll stop doing it," claptrap. The reality is that, in many cases, if trolls, bullies, and similar wastes of oxygen don't get the reaction that they want, their response is often to push harder. There is a limit to how much the target of an attack should HAVE to "toughen up" when the interconnected nature of our world today means that, where once a lone hater was just that -- alone and relatively harmless -- now the first shot, if repeated in the appropriate venue, can be like throwing chum into the water, drawing others to the attack. I think that we can ALL think of a few venues whose denizens practically LIVE for a good bit of fresh meat to attack for no other reason than for trolling's own sweet sake.

Further, beyond a certain point, the common assumption that "where there's smoke, there's fire" kicks in in the public mind when there are repeated attacks with no response from the victim (and giving no response is, after all, the tactic that "toughen up" requires). Add this to the apparently common practice today of potential employers, romantic partners, etc., doing an online search of a new prospect and finding page on page of unanswered falsehoods with no countervailing arguments and, I think, you can see that simply "toughening up" and "not letting them know that it bothers you" can be worse than useless.

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Gmail data-mining lawsuits fail to get class action status

Mike Moyle
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Re: Ignorance and Stupidity

Be as pissed as you want, but make sure you have your facts right and put on your big-boy face or no one will take your whining seriously.

The point that Judge Koh was making, I believe, was that, while Gmail users had agreed to Google's Ts & Cs, NON-GMail-users who received messages from Gmail customers never had a chance to accept OR decline those Ts & Cs. Therefore, these are TWO different groups and can't be combined into one class.

"Even if that's the only choice on the menu, I do not give it to them."

Despite what you might want to believe, the Ts & Cs that you click that little box on that says "I agree to the Terms and Conditions of <NAME>." ARE a valid contract/agreement between Google and its users and that click-through means that you *DO* give them whatever those Ts & Cs say.

Also, despite what you may believe, if you don't like a company's Ts & Cs, your choices are either:

1 -- not to use the service, or;

2 -- to hold your nose and use it anyway -- and accept that there are things that you don't like, but that they are outweighed (in your estimation) by the parts of the service that you DO like enough to use it. Really, legally, there is no third option.

Actually, there IS a third option: You can argue that there has been a violation of LAW. That's what the courts rule on, not degree of butthurt. I don't believe that Judge Koh has said that the various suits may not go to trial, or even that the plaintiffs can't form discrete groups for purposes of taking Google to court -- Gmail users, non-users sending to/receiving from Gmail users, etc.; just that the categories of people claiming harm do not fall into one monolithic group ("class"), because not all had the same options available to them.

I'm not sure what "theft of services" you think Judge Koh is (allegedly) guilty of. From the article, it appears that she followed both the LETTER and the SPIRIT of the law, as a judge should. Now, the law may not be what you would LIKE it to be, but there you go.

Also, unless Larry Page and Sergei Brin came to every email user's house and physically assaulted them, then NO ONE was (per your original post) "literally raped" by Google. Whether they were FIGURATIVELY raped is left as an exercise for the student. (Personally, I prefer to reserve the use of the term "rape" to describe actual cases of... you know... RAPE, but clearly you have a different standard.)

Further, as others have noted, email should be considered to be a postcard, rather than a letter in an envelope. Bots are sent in clear and the postal workers along the way may or may not look at it. If you want your mail to be (more) private put it in an envelope (encrypt it) before you send it off.

...And "bitch"...? Please... this isn't Reddit. Grow up.

Finally, "its" is possessive, while "it's" is the contraction of "it is". Learn the difference.

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Mike Moyle
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Re: Ignorance and Stupidity

Wow... Dude, you should probably have your doctor adjust your meds, because doing it yourself can be a REALLY bad idea.

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Earth's night-side gets different kinds of neutrinos from day-side

Mike Moyle
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Depending on how many data points they have...

Shouldn't there be at least SOMETHING resembling a bell-curve measuring from noon to noon with highest numbers of electron neutrinos at midnight? As more of the earth intervenes between detector and sun, the number of neutrinos decaying to the electron flavored-ones should increase, if only slightly, right?

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Scam emails tell people they have cancer to trick them into installing a money-stealing Trojan

Mike Moyle
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@ Jim Willsher

Re: a business case for ZIP files:

I work for a government agency. Our MIS people block access to cloud/FTP sites (SendSpace, DropBox, etc.). Inserting multiple attachments (InDesign document and PDF from one folder, fonts from another, images from a third -- repeat if you're sending multiple documents) into an email to send off to the printer's is a PITA when compared with dropping in one ZIP archive.

So, yeah; While it's not an ideal solution, ZIP still serves a useful function in business.

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UK.gov to train up 11-year-old cyberwarriors

Mike Moyle
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Re: Re: Obvious Star Wars reference

"No!

Ender's Game!!!

The book, not the film (not seen it, but bound to be terrible in comparison though)."

...Ender's MMORPG", perhaps?

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Ethical hacker backer hacked, warns of email ransack

Mike Moyle
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Requisite Monty Python reference is attached

Those responsible for hacking the people who have just been hacking have been hacked.

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SATANIC 'HELL DIAMOND' tells of sunless subterranean sea

Mike Moyle
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Huh...

"Ringwoodite, the highest pressure peridot, has previously been found in meteorites, but has never been discovered on Earth before because scientists can't reach the planet's core."

Wouldn't this imply that the old, (I thought....) discredited "planet between Mars and Jupiter" explanation for the asteroid belt may have some validity after all? I ca't see how a crystal that apparently needs deep-crustal pressures to form would show up in meteorites, otherwise.

What am I missing?

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NZ bloke's drunken poker bet ends in 99-letter name

Mike Moyle
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...on the shores of Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg.

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Show more CANADIAN-MADE PORN, insists Canadian government

Mike Moyle
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Actually, Canada produces a LOT of "special-interest" smut:

For those into interracial lesbians there's the "Mabel and Brown Sugar" series.

For those who prefer gay males there's "Man-to-Manitoba".

For those into sex during a woman's period there's "Maple Leaf Rag".

For those of a conservative bent (*ahem*) there's the "Northwest Tarry-Tories"

...And, of courses, they classic "Poutine Poontang" series.

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