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* Posts by laird cummings

559 posts • joined 22 Aug 2007

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British armed forces get first new pistol since World War II

laird cummings
Facepalm

Re: ...someone swaggering...

Even the other shooters think the guy with IMI's chrome paperweight is an idiot.

Personally, have never bothered to even pick one up.

I have, however, had my shooting position peppered with cases from a DE in .50AE with a bad extractor. THAT was sufficiently annoying that I cut my range time short that day, and have never since agreed to share a shooting line with anyone carrying one of those chrome bricks.

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laird cummings
Facepalm

"2kg is nothing"

Thus speaks the person who has never had to carry a ruck.

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Just what the world needs: Android in the rice cooker

laird cummings
Terminator

Doomed, I tells ya...

What happens when you cooker gets hacked? Does SkyNet then live in your kitchen appliances?

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laird cummings
Thumb Down

Re: I just created this account to say this...

Sweet gods - It's *rice.* Any moron can cook it, if they bother to learn. Which learning takes about two minutes.

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First rigid airship since the Hindenburg enters trials

laird cummings
Thumb Up

"As a cargo carrier it certainly doesn't look that useful."

I like it better for delivering large amounts of cargo to remote, unimproved sites where there is no likely prospect of a landing field, and where helos are range-probibited.

Probably be damned useful in logging, too - no need to cut roads in or out - deliver the loggers vertically, remove cut trees the same way.

Wilderness firefighting? Possibly as a high-endurance on-scene incident controller? Has possibilies.

Fisheries surveilance, enforcement, support, and survey? Yup.

Poor-man's satelite? Why not?

So - I see uses. Whether they're *economic* uses remains to be seen.

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laird cummings
Mushroom

@ AC @ 2013GMT

" ...stuff like big bike chains round the warhead, or a cylinder or cone of metal around the charge... "

The concept you're looking for is "(expanding) continuous-rod warhead." Take a bunch of fairly ductile metal rods. Arrange them in a cylinder. Weld alternate adjacent end bits together, so the stack of rods becomes a continuous circuit, closely collapsed. Stick an explosive charge in the middle. Hang a rocket off one end and a proximity fuse off the other, and Voila! A modern AA missile!

The warhead detonation tends to turn the rods into a very large ring, violently expanding flying high-velocity ring. They do horrifying things to conventional aircraft - I suspect they'd do rather worse to lightly-hulled dirigibles. Hydrogen or no hydrogen.

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Sky watchers prep for early 2013 asteroid fly-bys

laird cummings
Mushroom

How do we know that we know where all the big ones are?

" Short answer - we don't. "

Correct. And it's the one's you *don't* see coming that you gotta worry about...

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BOFH: Cannot terminate PFY instance... ACCESS DENIED

laird cummings
Thumb Up

Re: Talking of contracts

One supposes the Bursar is high on the Headmaster's Christmas list...

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laird cummings
Big Brother

Re: There is another fun assumption floating around..

I work as a publisher in Pharma - Document control *and* ensuring re-usability of content are big issues in my day-to-day life. Most major deliverables are presented in final form via PDF. Digital signatures are creeping in, but the validation process to demonstrate source integrity to various regulatory agencies is a copper-plated bitch, so those are usually reserved for high-urgency, high-consequences documents.

The upshot is that subordinate ('Minor') PDF document versions are fairly open, but approved ('Major') PDF versions are locked up tighter than the sultan's seraglio. Those documents for which digital signatures are part of the validated process are locked up tighter than the sultan's vigin daughter.

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Author of '80s classic The Hobbit didn't know game was a hit

laird cummings
Coffee/keyboard

Sick Genius

HFG, that's utterly brilliant. And seriously twisted, too.

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BOFH: Can't you just ... NO, I JUST CAN'T

laird cummings
Pirate

RE: No, but...

They do over here in the States. How high you want your zappies to go? I've got a catalog right here hawking units up to 1 megavolt...

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Better luck next time Blofeld! Five Bond plot myths busted

laird cummings
Coat

Nuclear pedantry

"...you would need to somehow ram the whole reactor core down into a subcritical mass in a tiny fraction of a second, the way a warhead does."

That would be a *super*critical mass. Subcritical masses just sit there and do nothing terribly interesting. It's all about critical goemetry - And a core designed to generate use power levels is *very* hard to get to go 'bang.' Excepting in the mundane 'steam expolosion' manner. Which would hardly suit a Bond villian.

Mine's the canary-yellow one with lead lining. Cheers!

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Bone-bothering boffins pull TINY fanged dinosaur from drawers

laird cummings

Re: Re: Is it me...

Actually, shortly after the movie was filmed the Utahraptor rose to popular awareness in the general public; a near-on replica of the baddies in that film (minus the feathers).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utahraptor

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Skydiver sets date for 'supersonic' edge-of-space PLUNGE

laird cummings

Doesn't matter

"Note the SR71 M3 is *horizontal* speed. while an ejection in level flight you will be moving *forward* at M3 but falling at the standard g. So likely to accelerate until drag matches g under Stoke law. Likely to be about 120mph as per usual freefall."

Doesn't matter - He was in free-fall the instant he departed the aircraft, no matter what might have been his vector with respect to the surface of the earth. Certainly his vertical component was less than his horizontal component, but he was still free-fallling much as a bullet free-falls once it leaves the muzzle.

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laird cummings

...sting like a bitch...

Kinda like ejecting straight into a brick wall.

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Kiwi cops forgot Kim Dotcom's visa

laird cummings
Facepalm

It seems that the NZ officials are every bit as incapable, clueless, and out of control as our own. Depressing for the Kiwis, I'm sure, to be on a par with the FBI.

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Reg hack uncovers perfect antidote to internet

laird cummings
Facepalm

Re: That, Mister Anderson... is the sound of inevitability.

Time to buy a Rough Collie.

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Dredd movie review

laird cummings

If only...

...We could splice the Stallone film's look to this storyline, we'd be a lot closer.

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DARPA builds faster-than-Usain-Bolt Cheetah robot

laird cummings

Enteretined by (mostly elsewhere, like on Aunty's pages) the knee-jerk "Oh noes! A Killing Machine! 'Dem Ebil 'Mericans is gun' slaughter us!" reactions I'm seeing to this.

Seriously now, folks. We only slaughter folks as what piss us off, and those as stands next to thems as what pisses us off. Most y'all are just fine and safe. (lock your doors)

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Global strategic maple syrup reserves hit in Canadian mega-heist

laird cummings

Re: No worries here

Perhaps the Canuks will remember the reuslts of *every* invasion launched southwards from Canada? Y'all got some catching up to do.

Besides - We don't need to cross the border - we've got our own maple syrup region. Indeed, it's located in exactly the region where every south-bound invasion has foundered. Coincidence?

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British boffin builds cool maser after argument with wife

laird cummings

Re: Mono-crystalline sapphire doughnut

Transparent aluminum!

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laird cummings

Re: A Turnaround from the Old Pattern

"Neglected?

or he couldnt get funding to build a prototype back then."

Distinction without a difference.

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Scientists find safer way to store hydrogen

laird cummings

Re: Maybe......

The oxygen from which it was just divorced? Kinda defeats the purpose.

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laird cummings
Mushroom

Niche purpose

Never mind the grand schemes to save ourselves from ourselves - I know of at least one immediately practical use for the NaBH4 technology: In nuclear submarines.

Nuclear submarines create their own O2 supply via electrolytic cracking of water. The Hydrogen from that is essentialy a waste product and atmosphere contaminant - and a potential serious safety threat if the "Bomb" should vent or purge in-board (which happens often enough to give A-Gangers grey hairs).

H2 is also a waste product of the acid reactions in the ship's storage batteries - Indeed, there is a specific piece of equipment (which is noisy and a pain to manage) on board for burning unwanted H2 out of the atmosphere in-hull.

Most of the waste H2 is, however, simply vented overboard. The ability to store and accumulate the H2 on-board has a useful application beyond providing an alternative waste-product control: The tored H2 can be injected into the fuel stream of the boat's emergency diesel generator.

So - Atmosphereic contaminant sorted, waste gas storage, handling, and disposal issue sorted, an annoying bit of gear (mostly) idled, and a (minor) increase in fuel efficiency for the diesel generator.

I know - Entirely too practical a line of thinking for an el Reg commentard, but there you have it.

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Apple lawyer: 'I promise I am not smoking crack'

laird cummings
Thumb Down

RE: "...pure histrionics..."

Stop watching newsreels.

Having sat juror in major civil trials, it's very much about strategy, tactics, and control of the narritive. The side that can make its story the most compelling persuasive wins. Histrionics are a *very* dangerous tactic which can backfire badly and skilled lawyers use them very sparingly.

'Perry Mason' moments are exceedingly rare in trials where large dollar sums are at stake.

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Assange's fate to be revealed at high noon

laird cummings
FAIL

Whee!

I see some people still have fantasies that the US really gives a rats a$$ about Assange and is willing to waste time and effort on him - because CLEARLY hes' the biggest threat on the US' radar!

Not.

If the US really wanted him as badly as the various fantasists (who problaly wank off on the thought that Assange still matters), he'd have been snatched long ago.

Give it up. Go find a less-impluaible over which to pleasure yourselves.

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US appeal dismissed in Dotcom case

laird cummings
Meh

Re: Good

US Federal law enforcement has been a confluence of arrogance, ignorance, incompetence, and ego ever since the days of J. Edgar. Possibly even before that. It's mostly, I think, due to the fact that they're largely useless on a day-to-day basis, and must find ways to justify their existance.

Kim DotCon is slimy, but the US District Attorney in this case is slimer.

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Designer punked fanbois with asymmetric screw

laird cummings

Re: Any decent mechanical engineer

And no engineer of any sense at all would design a screw head with such an intricate interface - it would strip in an instant.

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Kim Dotcom pressing on with Megabox music service plans

laird cummings
Meh

Prediction:

He's slimier than the US District Attorney, so will 1) fail to deliver, and 2) avoid lock-up.

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Reg readers scrap over ultimate bacon sarnie

laird cummings

No damn sauces.

Ever.

For the Best, go with the basics:

Lightly-toasted bread, swabbed with a small amount of bacon grease. Smoked bacon fried to that perfect junction between crispy and pink. Add slice of tomato, small-ish leaf of lettuce.

Done.

Heritics add a slice of onion, but we know what to do with heritics. And cheese is right out.

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Asteroid miners to strap 'scopes to new Virgin Galactic rocket

laird cummings

Re: Moon is a harsh mistress

I initially read that as "...mineral dump..." and nearly aspirated my coffee.

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laird cummings
Trollface

Re: Where do I sign up?

"Playing EVE Online I'm surprised you have time to read the reg."

Clearly, another AFK miner, in need of a good ganking.

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laird cummings
Coat

Re: Surely?

"...exporting... ...the French... ...into the depths of space?"

What did space ever do to deserve that?

Mine's the one with the beret stuffed in the pocket.

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'Zombie bullets' fly off US shelves after wave of undead attacks

laird cummings

Re: meh

"...5.56 and the 7.62 Cal rounds are primarily military rounds..."

Nope.

They're also known as .223 and .308, respectively. They're VERY common civilian calibers.

9mm is a poor choice for varmint hunting - and is generally considered only marginal when fighting people, come to think of it. Varmint hunting requires accuracy, which generally calls for a long-gun. And in many cases, varmints are exceedingly wary,* which means you need range, as well - meaning the long-gun is now a requirement. .17 and .22 are fine for small varmints, but to take larger critters, you need something with a bit of 'oomph' to it.

*One wonders why?

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laird cummings
Thumb Up

Re: Did nobody spot this?

"I mean, what kind of workplace (other than a gun shop!) would allow you to display a box of LIVE FUCKING AMMUNITION around the office? "

Minus a gun to fire them, they're more safe than your stapler. And they make dandy conversation-starter paperweights.

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laird cummings
Trollface

Re: Disgusting...

"In the USA, the naked body is more offensive than a gun.

How fucking sad."

Dude.

Have you SEEN many of our bodies..?!

As for firearms? Well you said it yourself - they're tools. Tools are not disgusting - they're just tools. Learn how to *handle* your tools, and you never need be ashamed of 'em.*

.

*If you accidentally conflate this semi-intentional double entendre with the thought of naked American bodies, you're on your own - I ain't supplying the brain bleach.

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laird cummings

Re: In the US, you could even market dog-turds

Not quite, though you're close. Gotta deep-fry 'em, first.

Learned that from our buddies in Scotland

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laird cummings

...decent armor...

Firefighters' bunker gear.

Tough, thick, and pretty much gnaw-proof.

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laird cummings
Mushroom

Re: Go backwards

Too far backwards - 12-pounders take too long to reload. I do rather like the chainshot option, though. :D

No - what you want is a nice old French 75mm model 1897. With cannister. 15 rounds per minute - aimed. Can easily be served by four persons (your typical family, for instance), and can be reasonably served by three, or even two in a pinch. Highly portable, fairly compact, will easily fit in a typical suburban garage, or in a larger garden shed. Doesn't even require motor transportation, for short-distance moves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_de_75_mod%C3%A8le_1897#Rapid_fire_capability

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laird cummings

RE: rifled barrel in the shotgun

Some slug guns have rifled barrels, but that's generally not necessary. Use rifled slugs, instead.

From my old Beretta 1200FP, I could place five-for-five in a patch the size of palm of my hand at 100 yards - Not precisely tack-driving, but more than sufficient to the need.

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laird cummings

Not in Philadelphia, they're not!

The Democratic Machine in Philly always manages to find just enough superseded voters to tip the balance in their favor - no matter who is running.

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Assange: Australian neglect made me flee to Ecuador embassy

laird cummings
FAIL

Jeebus is Funny

"...trying to stop himself being executed for doing nothing wrong."

Assange is a fantasist with a massive ego problem and delusions of potence. He *has* to be enemy #1 of the US, or he's just a pissant little gadfly of limited relevance and even less power. Bin Laden, he is not - though he somehow magically thinks the US is actually threatened by him and his games. Megalomania, I'd say - and apparantly, you actually believe him, which I find rather entertaining.

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'Kindness of America' snapper shot himself in 'act of self-promotion'

laird cummings

Re: America Strong!

"If "clear changes in government and social policy" are the aim, here's a thought: try campaigning. Try marching. Try petitioning. Heck, as a last resort you could even try voting."

Never said it was foolproof. Never said it was the only way.

But there are times when an armed and focused group of citizens is the only appropriate answer.

Sadly, apathy is ever more becoming the way of the land, and with it, eventually, this answer will cease to be availalbe when needed.

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laird cummings

Re: America Strong!

Actually D.A. M., you've got it ENTIRELY wrong.

The weapons are NOT for hunting. They're very specifically for keeping tyrants afraid. Especially those in our own government.

Hunting is a fringe benefit.

Now, of course, all the various discredited arguments will appear about how it's never been used*, never will be used**, can never work***, etc. etc.

Also, I will be heavily down-voted heavily by people whom really do not / do not wish to understand.

*Except in places like the Whiskey Rebelion, Matawan. Wounded Knee, Colorado Coal Strike, Branch Davidians, etc. etc.

**See above as a small sampling.

***In each case, despite officially being on the 'losing' side, clear changes in Government and social policy were implemented immediately afterwards.

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Assange's Ecuador asylum bid has violated £200k UK bail, say cops

laird cummings
Big Brother

Re: Bail Breaches in the UK

He already *was* ankle-tagged.

With an arrest warrant out, and the high profile, he won't be getting a slap on the wrist.

One wonders is that's precisely what he's angling for - a nice lengthy stay at Her Majesty's convenience?

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laird cummings

@AC; Wednesday 20th June 2012 15:49 GMT

Do you *honestly* think Sweden is going to allow a rendition of such a high-profile individual? Do you honestly think the US is going to expose rendition pratices to the kinds of scruitiny that making Assange 'vanish' would cause?

If so, you're living in a paranoid cloud cuckoo land.

Nope. Assange is just a moral coward.

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Brit judge orders Facebook to rip masks from anonymous cowards

laird cummings

Re: torn

Uh - yes I am?

You want her case to fail, so you state. I want her case to be heard - Without the prejudicialy-expressed desire for failure.

By the way - Opposite tack does not mean "opposite direction." It means 'different angle to the wind.' I this case, without the prejudice.

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laird cummings

Re: Will Facebook take any notice

"What is the bet that said US company will completely ignore the UK court, which will be helpless since it does not actually have juristriction."

My bet? Zuck & Co. will happily roll over for the court order. They want good relations with other countries, as there's money to be made, and rolling to a court in this case will in no way hurt their image. All they need is a plausible excuse.

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laird cummings

Re: Anonymous posting

"You may not like what a person says to you, but that is still their right to say it..."

Actually, not entirely true. Courts have repeatedly ruled that some forms of speech are NOT protected, and you have no right to 'unprotected' speech.

Defamitory, inciting, and provcative speach that boils down to what one justice called 'fighting words' are on the short list of things that may put you in legal jeopardy. Likewise, the classic "fire" in crowded theater - Unless there really *is* a fire.

In this case, the instigators have accused a person of specific, reprehensible crimes without recourse to court judgement or evidence - accusations that very plausibly have been injurious to her social and financial well-being. Indeed, an un-informed third party might well act on those baseless accusations, thereby plausibly placing her physical safety in jeopardy. That puts the bullies squarely in the cross-hairs of the law.

In short - your right to be a mouthy annoyance ends when your words cross certain lines.

Now - Has actual harm been done? I dunno. This is why we have courts - but in order to get a judgement, first we need to know who these idiots are.

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laird cummings

Re: torn

I'm on the opposite tack.

Attacks such as she experienced can cause real social harm, which can translate into real economic harm. I hope she gets the names, and drags the idiots kicking and screaming into the light.

Now - whether or not actual harm has been done, and what should be done about it, is a matter for a court (and maybe a jury). But wishing failure upon her cause seems a bit prejudiced to me. I'm hoping she gets her day in court, and that the jerks responsbile get theirs, too.

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