1500 posts • joined Friday 14th September 2007 07:00 GMT
Re: One experience
Also, GPS doesn't directly read heading. It infers it from the rate of change of position, and sometimes you get a short-term change of position which will indicate a radical change of heading. That's why the problem you describe will throw off the heading.
The aviation standard is the magnetic compass, and everything is based on that. Runway headings, VOR beacons, all the charts and the instructions from ATC; everything uses magnetic North as the reference. What the pilot was probably worried about was that the false heading from the GPS was a sign of a problem with the GPS position data. Whether or not the cause was an electronic device, best make sure the passengers know such things should be switched off. That's a pretty basic piece of troubleshooting.
Re: Computer Models!
Be careful about subsidies. Some of the subsidies for fossil fuel are quite well-hidden. If the pollution causes health problems, who pays that bill? In the British system, everyone ends up paying a little more, even the power generator. In the US system, the power generator hardly pays any of that bill. Either way, you can call it a hidden subsidy, because the power generator doesn't pay anything like the full costs of the pollution.
Yes, I know the customer pays, in the end, but the way it works today, it never gets onto the books, and so the costs of fossil fuel are reduced when making plans.
Re: Let's do it.
The obvious weakness, from a British point of view, is that the USA is big. This may well work out for mainland Europe, but the variations in weather over the UK may not be enough to keep everything going.
It isn't hard to see the other assumptions, but I think this is done well enough to be a counter to "we can't afford it". A power plant built today will be needing replacement by 2030. Whatever the replacement is, it will cost money. And renewables, done right, look a plausible choice.
But this sort of large-scale planning isn't something that a fragmented, privatised, electricity generation system is likely to do well.
Re: "abject" ?
I remember seeing metal-loaded spray paint intended to provide screening for plastic cases. Such solutions may still be available.
There is some almost conventional language in acting, body language of various sorts including facial expression and a part of the craft is in being aware of and in control of that. But how well that gets taught in schools, or in amateur drama I wouldn't care to guess. Film allows more subtlety, because the camera is closer than the audience in a theatre.
I wouldn't rule out these people doing some acting in the past, and if it's the rather exaggerated stage approach, well, this is a zombie movie. They don't have to be subtle.
There are a lot of different tablets
There are a lot of different Android tablets about, some of them surprisingly cheap, and with varying features. I think you still need Google Play access to get the Kindle reader app. Android 4, multi-touch screen, HDMI output, Micro SD slot: that's a quite common set of features, though the cheap hardware is thicker and heavier than a Nexus 7.
And I know people who use mifi gadgets that use wifi to connect to your computer.
It needs careful thought, but a useful tablet can be bought for around half the price of a Nexus 7. If you're thinking of essentially domestic use, around the house, do you need GPS or some of the other sensors? But I still would want Bluetooth.
There is no single answer.
Re: The Dutch have an army?
Not only do the French have a Navy, the Dutch have trained mountain infantry, part of their Marine Corps.
But what matters now?
I have looked at the LinkedIn profiles of a couple of people I have had occasion to deal with, and I suspect the Peter Principle applies. Or maybe the HR people who did the hiring didn't realise how different the current job is from their past experience. A glowing testimonial for web design in the late 1990s looks a little too bling-like now.
So many catches, so many orders of magnitude...
You have to be careful estimating the life of flash memory, because some processes use multiple writes, but even when you allow for that, running the input/output at full bandwidth can take a huge amount of time to wear out the chip. This tech will, practically, give us 3 orders of magnitude, with some margin left between lab results and normal use.
There are other limits, things such as the slow erosion of the metallic tracks as they carry current, and if you want really long life you might have to combine the component size of a couple of generations back with this heating system. So you might not see it in the highest capacity chips. That sort of compromise is what engineering is often about. And the useful life might also be limited by the service life of the interface. Look at how motherboard connector standards have changed over the last decade.
On the other hand, if you have a 100-year SSD, that's an incentive to keep supporting the interface, but what sort of expensive converter will you need to read it in 2112?
Re: Google is evil.
Google's scanning of the stuff I put on Google Drive must be driving their ad selections crazy. I once mentioned a girl getting a set of King Dick Whitworth spanners for her birthday, and the results were more than somewhat curious.
Too Easy To Escape The Current System
At the moment, the Daily Express is not subject to the Press Complaints Commission. They choose not to pay the fee to sign up. In areas where I have some knowledge, they produce some pretty shoddy journalism.
Neither does Private Eye subscribe to the PCC, partly because they report the failings of the major newspapers, and the PCC is dominated by the editors of these newspapers.
I believe this means that a replacement system needs to apply to all the press, and it should not be controlled by the press. And that will never happen....
Maybe they could reduce their profits a bit more.
If they increased their wages a bit, they could reduce their UK profits and pay even less tax.
Or maybe they're scared that better-paid workers would be more productive, make the company more money, and force them to pay more tax.
Re: MP stands for Media Prozzy, right?
These are the sort of transactions, where income tax is involved, HMRC have always paid special attention to. Is the deal made for a reasonable price? What I wonder is whether the IP fees charged by one Amazon component to another are a fair price. Get the pricing wrong, and is shifts from tax avoidance to tax evasion.
On this, proving the validity of the price, or showing it's a fake deal for tax evasion, are difficult problems.
So there's an existing way to go after Amazon, but it isn't easy.
Re: And I bet...
I know a couple of the well-known tech sales outfits that used the Channel Islands method, have now moved warehousing to the UK, and are still ahead on price.
Skylon is going to be an aeroplane that can go into space. I don't know what constraints there are on the flight profile, but I expect a relatively low-speed climb to high altitude and then a turn onto the "launch" heading for the run to Mach 5 and the extreme switch-over altitude.
If it's EU-backed, a runway in Spain might be the best choice, with the supersonic flight over the Mediterranean.
There is always going to be a penalty for a launch from Northern Europe and if EU funding is going to annoy David Cameron, I could care less..
Re: Where does the heat go?
So you weant to take the heat from the cold end of s Stirling Cycle Engine and feed it into a hot exhaust?
Heat cannot of itself pass from one body to a hotter body
Heat won't pass from a cooler to a hotter
You can try it if you like but you'd far better not-a
'Cos the cold in the cooler will get hotter as a rule-a
'Cos the hotter body's heat will pass to the cooler
Re: That used to be the case, but is less and less true as time goes on.
This is one reason why there are special "mobile" sites: not just the small screens but the data costs.
Early Digital Watches
This sort of stuff is a lot more varied than digital watches, because of the variety possible in what smartphone tech can do. In the early days of digital watches, they were pretty much the same, and then the makers realised that these standard, rather cheap, circuit boards could be put into all sorts of different cases. There's a place for the cheap plastic, and a place for expensive quality. And when the analogue dial electronic watch appeared, it happened all over again.
I have a Chinese-made mechanical pocket watch with a skeleton movement. I doubt it will last, it was so cheap, but it is a marvel to behold.
This is where bling is intersecting with technology. And sometimes we're forgetting the technology. I expect those wristwatch phones will work best with a good Bluetooth earpiece, but we all think of Dick Tracey or Brains when we see the idea.
The RPi is not what makes today different
OK, there have always been games consoles, but Windows no longer dominates the market. People can easily experience different types of personal computer. Apple has the iPhone and iPad. There are Android phones, tablets, and even cheap netbook-class machines. The idea of the office being Windows-only is deader than a very dead doornail.
Maybe the Raspberry Pi hype was needed to wake the teachers up to that more general change. In my time, I've seen enough teachers who would have been best woken up by high explosive. I hope times have changed.
Re: Secondlife Is still Alive.
I think that's a fair summary. A significant flow of new users, but most of them give up. It also struggles with more than a handful of people in the same place, and uses huge amounts of bandwidth.
As for the lass salubrious elements, there has been sex in such games since the days they were text-only.
I think Second Life is a technology that failed to deliver on the hype--I recall some hype from The Register--but it survives. There are better alternatives for corporations and schools, such as OpenSim, which allow everything to be on an internal network. I think Second Life is going to be the big public-access virtual world for a long time. It's going to be small.
It's not going to be much use in a world of mobile-phone data delivery to smartphones and tablets. Not enough screenspace, and too much data to be paid for.
And what about the EU?
The problem with companies selling EU-wide, and getting the most advantage from their choice of EU country to work from, is something that has led to the EU-Commission starting proceedings against Luxembourg. They think the tax rates are too low. And I have seen reports of Amazon leaning on publishers over VAT. Amazon aren't just trying to minimise their tax liabilities, they're acting in ways that could provoke action under Single European Market principles.
As for the fees for using IP, such as the computer software which Amazon uses, which look like a way of getting money safely out of the scope of EU tax systems, plenty of people have been hit with tax bills for such fake transactions. Sooner or later, somebody is going to want to know how the price is set. And decide that the value for the transaction, for tax purposes, is much lower.
The problem is the deep water
Since the expedition that went to look for the island found deep water, around 1400m deep, at the mapped location, a lot of these explanations just won't work.
It is still possible there is shallow water within a plausible distance for past navigation errors. This is going to need a fairly wide-ranging survey to finally settle. But they'd be looking for something pretty large to support a 30km long feature.
If it was a navigation error, the size of a chain of small islands could be the result of one island plotted in different locations, so what actually exists might be relatively small.
Third paragraph, I think you missed the name of the "American theoretical physicist". A quick Google also suggests you're a few years out with the date.
Since Wilfred Dunderdale died in 1990, you wonder when Mr. Martin really did find the message.
Maybe he knew the name of the sender.
Five-letter groups is almost the standard for ciphering. You hide word lengths, which are otherwise a big giveaway.
A wild guess
First, there has to be enough information for the cipher clerk to identify the cipher used. Which means that the pigeon loft only supplied pigeons for one unit, so everything goes to the right place when it arrives. And they can be expected to recognise Sjt W Stot.
Second. this unit doesn't want to rely on radio.
Third, they can send a useful short message, but it's something more complicated than, for instance, the seizure of Pegasus Bridge (and the time is wrong for that instance too).
It might be from one of the Jedburgh teams, uniformed soldiers dropped to help the French Resistance, but did they use pigeons? They did routinely use one-time pads. Another possibility is the GHQ Liason Regiment, which reported the positions of Allied forces. That could be a short message, but again did they use pigeons?
It's been suggested they didn't have time to set up the radio transmitter, but they obviously did have the time to do the ciphering. I'm inclined towards a Jedburgh team, because they would have had to be careful about making transmissions. They're in occupied territory, and they could be tracked down.
The same signal might have been sent by radio, and received, maybe a day or two later. That gets deciphered, and the one-time pad is marked as used, and destroyed. It would be a bad move to send differently ciphered versions of the same message. Maybe a pigeon did get through. Why both pigeon numbers on this message? One less thing to go wrong when you're preparing the pigeons.
And maybe all I am doing is constructing a plausible fiction. We might not even have a real name, it could be a 1944 version of a "handle", the "Rubber Duck" of the time.
How much for how much?
How much of an average nickel-iron asteroid would have to be processed to get one ounce of high-value metal?
The back of this here envelope suggests the PGMs would be a by-product of making structural metal alloys. You don't run a business for the by-products, but they can be nice to have.
There's a lot in how the human behaves. There are ways a human can act which a dog will react to, and even Police Dogs are trained in ways which don't push too hard against is. It isn't a Crocodile Dundee stunt, but not acting scared will affect how the dog acts. As far as the Police are concerned, you have stopped, and that's fine.
A lot of dog training was based on misleading ideas that came from the study of wolves in zoos, a very artificial situation. Looking back over the dogs and cats in my life, we used to surprise some people, but we never went the Barbara Woodhouse way. As for the one-eyed ginger tom from across the road, who had a reputation as a Right Bastard, I think he ended up trusting us.
My uncle's piece of skirt was one of the "Ooh, baby" school of pet handling. Our cat would hide for the rest of the day.
Maplin has changed a lot.
Maplin have changed a lot since it was the place for tools and components. It started out mail order, and I sometimes wonder if that side works well in the retail parks and their sheds. But it is far from a total loss. If you remember the old days, it doesn't look so good now.
Re: to buy a TV
As a general rule, it's pot luck whether the TV or Monitor is adjusted to suit the lighting in the store. And, as you say, the quality of the input channel can be dodgy.
I did have a good experience with Currys, as my elderly father needed a new TV, and I was able to combine a website that showed useful pictures of the remote with being able to take him to see it. It went well.
That maybe suggests how the surviving retailers can hold their own. They have to combine internet and physical shops in useful ways.
An Old Problem
It was Professor Tolkien himself who sold the film rights, a few years before he died. A great many things have been licensed by the rights holders over the years. A great many new sorts of goods have also appeared.
Media companies in the USA, not just Hollywood types, have been trying to stretch old contracts to include new sorts of goods for many years. Nobody dreamed of eBooks when The Hobbit was published, before WW2.
Copyright lawyers struggled with computer software. I think part of what we are seeing now is the shift from the physical to the virtual. We used to have a stack of floppy disks, or a cassette tape. Then came the CD and DVD. Now we get a new game by logging into Steam. Within the computer business, we've coped with that change.
You'd have to read the Tolkien contract, though I have heard it said that the definitions are unusually broad, and have sometimes made it difficult for the print publishers, because they were not sure that they could produce some publicity items for the books. This was a long time ago, and there were no big arguments, but somebody had to sign something. If what I heard was correct, those slot machines might be legitimate. Some of the other issues might be decided the other way.
Just as in patents, some of the claims in a court filing are a stretch that will not stand up to challenge.
When the Middle Earth Role-Playing Game appeared, it was licensed via the Saul Zaentz operation, but the publishers checked. They obviously were a sort of book, and new stories, and such. I expect a deal was done, but it wasn't a big money thing. And the MERP products were done well.
Now we're talking about huge amounts of money, and both sides are playing a rough game. Besides, you know the reputation of Hollywood lawyers and accountants. The Tolkien Estate and their publishers are one of the few I can think of who have the resources to fight this sort of case. And, if the rights-stretch is part of the issue, will it ever get decided by a court? I don't think Hollywood can afford to have the judge decide against them on that.
[Insert favourite warning of the rise of a Dark Lord]
Look, see the warping of the language!
I saw one recent statistic--Jimmy Savile prompted a lot of pontificating--which made me wonder what is being counted. I can thing of some of the things which my schoolteachers did which could be considered as abusive, even if they were essentially managerial incompetence, and I am wary of the possibility that "child abuse" is being used, and read or presented as "child sexual abuse" in a way that is conjuring up a mass of horror.
My late mother was a trained nursery nurse, and she knew what could happen, back in the 1950s. None of this is new. None of it depends on the technologies which have spread since then. She sometimes wondered how the later sexual abuse in children's homes could have ever happened, but she also said how some the kids she knew couldn't be trusted. Maybe that's part of why it could happen: the abusers picked targets who would not be believed.
The professionals got suckered by the whole Satanic Ritual Abuse scare, and did more harm than any abuser who might have been caught up in that net. They wanted to pursue some sort of outsider, and ever since I have wondered at each new set of headlines.
And I have this habit of assembling my own computer
The last time I bought a complete desktop PC, it was a very early Tandy MS-DOS machine. Ever since, I have been assembling the things from parts, maybe saving a few quid on the cost, and knowing I can replace anything. My previous machine ran XP, and eventually became too old as standards changed--PATA replaced by SATA for instance. I have this uncomfortable feeling that Windows 7 is the last in the chain, still the familiar UI and handling modern features such as 64-bit software and multiple processor cores. And the networking drivers are a lot better than in XP.
How is UEFI going to affect that?
As for dealing with Microsoft, sup with a long spoon. I pretty much only have Internet Explorer on my system to connect to Microsoft's web sites. It doesn't really surprise me that the Linus Foundation is having problems, and some of it could well be down to their way of using Windows.
I can think of quite a few software outfits, from Microsoft down, and including a few Linux distros, which have the "my way, or the highway" attitude. It works if you have the sort of monopoly Apple and Microsoft have. When it's the hardware+software combined, as Apple do, the end result can be worth it. But it does have a cost, for all of us.
In the end, we're all different, and there cannot be a single universal solution. But that is what Microsoft are trying to be.
How about the possibility of some less than scrupulous open-source developer, fed up with the apparent obstruction from Microsoft, discovering the loophole in the system?
History shows us that cryptosystems, and there has to be a cryptosystem at the heart of this, can have flaws that are not apparent to the users, and the people attacking the system don't need to know how it works. There can be a different route from B back to A.
Having said that, it's not easy, but this is going to be seriously attacked by the virus gangs. They want to have rootkits. So might those awfully nice people at Sony. So it would be a bit foolish to get linked to breaking this security, in a head above the parapet sort of way.
The BBC and Adove manage to break iPlayer again. Never mind, we can always get those programmes at the library.
With all the logging tools and the like, that makes a sort of sense. Aren't there some standard cross-platform libraries involved in this TCP stuff? I know there is libcurl, but that is at a higher level than this seems to be. It does all suggest where the high-value targets in the Linux world are: not user computers but web servers.
When will I get a kernel update because of this?
I am sure that a quiet word has been said...
"Restricted" is the lowest level of classification, and it is as much a reminder that you don't talk about things as a protection of anything important. Those passwords for outside sites such as the FAA don't reveal secrets but you shouldn't be revealing any passwords, None of us should.
If anyone deserves the quiet word, it's the photographer, who I see was RAF and should have known better.
Re: The Morality Police
That's one of those cultural differences, and because people are far more likely to have sex than to have guns, it's not one I can entirely dismiss.
But what I have seen of porn, there's a lot of bad sex: potentially abusive, risky, and generally awkward situations, which are a poor example for the young. Even when almost all of it was still photographs, in the days before broadband and streaming video, you could find pictures of what could be consenting adults having fun, with captions that made it out to be abusive.
Any answer to the problems had to involve good sex education.
Without that, porn seems dangerous. How many times is a condom used? What does it suggest about a woman who enjoys sex? How does it warp our perceptions?
Besides, sexual signalling is so widespread in the adult world that I can't see how we can ignore sex, as we raise our children. Porn is a terrible set of examples, but hardly the end of the world.
Re: Tiscali will rue the day...
I haven't heard much shouting from the marketing chimps, and they're still shouting "unlimited" anyway.
However you do the filtering, on the network or on a local PC, it depends on the people setting the filters. If it goes wrong, can they afford the cost of failure? I'm not totally against an opt-in network-level filter, but even the basic tools I have here suggest that websites can carry some suspicious content linked via third-parties. I wonder if the lack of failure accusations is a sign that this is a threat being whipped up by the politicians.
OK, maybe I'm a freak in how I react to some of the stuff out there. I know I sometimes see a schlocky horror scene in a film and wonder about how it was done. But it also seems that Politicians will believe anything, no matter how flimsy the evidence.
Stage magic. there are TV shows that reveal how the trick works. You can have the shock of the impossible, and the revelation of the reality. And the performance of the trick is the result of a lot of hard work and practice. We still have reason to applaud.
Do the politicians know we are onto their tricks?
The 1950s was a time of incredibly extensive propellant research but on what I know of the subject, a gelled monopropellant is really something new. In antique times the military was looking for storable propellants which worked in any climate, and eventually solid propellants were good enough to take the job. But until then the answers were sometimes excessively exciting.
They paid for some wild research then, and learned a lot about interactions between physics and chemistry in the rocket exhaust. Gelled monopropellant is maybe the modern wild research, but getting it tested in a flying rocket, instead of on a test stand, is a big step. Not many things got past the test stand in the 1950s.
First they taxed the businesses in the Channel Islands...
It used to be that, for the smaller items, you could buy from businesses in the Chennel Islands, and legally not pay any US taxes at all. Not even VAT. I know of one of those businesses that has moved its warehouse/dispatch to the UK, and it still undercutting the High Street and the supermarkets. Is it all tax avoidance?
These moves are part of the same pattern of potential competition-killing. These are not the only companies which avoid tax. I wonder just who is running the Conservative Party glove puppet on this.
There's also that story of how the EU Commission does not approve of the ultre-low rates in Luxembourg, which Amazon takes advantage of.
Is this a case of companies being too greedy, and drawing attention to themselves?
Next time you cover this topic, it would be useful to list the channel numbers involved as well as the frequencies. Back in the old days. locally, we had five analogue channels spread between 22 and 60, pretty much the full spectrum of the time. So I doubt anyone here will need new aerials to receive future Freeview.
Oh, there's a list on Wikipedia, and slight variations between the UK and the rest of Europe. 800MHz would cut off above Channel 61, 700MHz above Channel 49, while there are four or five channels below 500MHz
I can't see how reducing the range breaks any STB, other than what might happen if an STB tries to tune into some random signal from the non-TV services.
I would like a few years of stability but we keep being asked to re-tune as DVB channels get shifted around. Is this really likely to bring on anything more troublesome? I'd worry more about semi-competent aerial riggers talking up the work they would have to do.
Re: Adobe air updated for a reason
I'm just wondering what the BBC does in their software to make it break after an upgrade. Are they using the security flaws for something they're not telling us about? Is there some other oddity in the code which got fixed, and broke the BBC system?
Re: Testing, testing, 1-2
This has happened a couple of times before this one.
The BBC then tells you that you need a newer version of the Adobe software and gives you a link to the default Adobe download.
They don't seem to have learned anything. Is it any wonder people use BitTorrent when the legitimate download service is run so badly?
Locally, the Comet shed is close to the PCWorld/Curry's shed, and Maplin just opened a new store nearby. There used to be a couple of other similar chains right next-door to Comet, but they suffered extreme mammary-orientation challenges a few years ago,
Maplin isn't really in the same territory, so what is left but DSG?
Truth in Advertising
I think this guy is being a bit silly, but it's still a fair point. Look at how many instances are out there of advertising that sails close to the wind.
How about "Unlimited" broadband?
I would expect Microsoft to get some criticism of how clearly they do explain the situation: 32GB is the hardware description, I suppose they will say. It is, I think, a far easier thing to defend than the sort of "Unlimited" which is capped at 40GB per month, but that doesn't make the adverts right.
Re: Freeview radio - whats the point?
That's a very fair point.
For the radio I want, and where I live, DAB is a poor second.
You sound to be getting some stations that I would try, but I am getting to the point where Radio 2 is feeling a little too modern for my tastes. When do we get The Beatles on Radio 3?
I was on ONDigital, and had the Phillips box, which was a good piece of kit.
Getting it working was tricky. It needed a wide-band aerial to get all the multiplexes from the local transmitter, and since transmitter power was much lower, pre-switchover, I also had to install an amplifier and use the higher-grade co-ax cable. The jump in picture quality from the aerial upgrade was obvious.
You could class DTB as an example of the common British disease of good technology brought down by bad management.
I ended up doing my own aerial installation after a visit from an incompetent professional. If you cut into the coaxial downlead to do a test on the signal, you don't rejoin it by twisting the ends together and wrapping it in insulating tape.
A slightly later development in DTB tech would have also greatly reduced the need to have adjacent transmitters use different frequencies. Sometimes being first isn't so nice.
Re: @Copyright Action
The Creative Commons approach would give that flexibility, with their various licences. But, just as the GPL, it depends on a strong basic copyright system, which the British plan does not provide. The "No-Commercial" variants would be a starting point.
- Product Round-up Smartwatch face off: Pebble, MetaWatch and new hi-tech timepieces
- Geek's Guide to Britain BT Tower is just a relic? Wrong: It relays 18,000hrs of telly daily
- Geek's Guide to Britain The bunker at the end of the world - in Essex
- Review: Sony Xperia SP
- FLABBER-JASTED: It's 'jif', NOT '.gif', says man who should know