back to article I couldn't give a Greek clock about your IoT fertility tracker

Like to get wet, confides (or asks) the manufacturer in suitably moist English. Faithful admirers of my long-standing column will immediately recognise a sexual double-entendre when they read one. But this time you'd be wrong. Or at least you might be. I'm not sure. I am looking at Comper Healthcare's promotional web pages …

  1. bobsmith2016

    'Faithful admirers of my long-standing column will immediately recognise a sexual double-entendre when they read one.'

    I see what you did there.

    1. Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble? Silver badge
      Coat

      Alistair knows that the people love a good double-entendre.

      And he never shy's away from giving them one.

      </coat>

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
        Happy

        Today Dabbsy took a trip to the gramophone library. Where the two kindly old archivists were happy to show him their 7 and 12 inchers...

        [with apologies to the lovely Samantha.]

        1. Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble? Silver badge
          Pint

          "Today Dabbsy took a trip to the gramophone library. Where the two kindly old archivists were happy to show him their 7 and 12 inchers...

          [with apologies to the lovely Samantha.]"

          I'm sorry, I haven't a clue what you're talking about...

          Have a beer for that one!

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            You know, Samantha puts in a lot of hard work on this round and she gets a bit fed up with silly comments about the way she 'checks the teams' 7 inchers' or 'pulls out my reproduction equipment and twists my knob'. Samantha tells me she tries to take no notice of these pathetic, purile critics, but it isn't always easy to ignore her knockers.

        2. Paul Westerman

          Samantha

          "Samantha has her hands on my reproduction equipment..."

          1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

            Re: Samantha

            "Samantha has her hands on my reproduction equipment..."

            Samantha is welcome to handle my Original Equipment...

        3. hammarbtyp Silver badge
          Gimp

          Its a foot long but I don't use it as a rule

      2. Stevie Silver badge

        4 Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble?

        This is what the bloody article is all about for Azathoth's sake!

        There is a perfectly good word for the past participle of "shying" away and it is shies.

        No need for neologistic "shy's" at all.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You went to a museum, that is a popular conference pasttime

    Museums are classic. There are less classic things to do at a conference like bring a kayak and do some rowing around the lake in the park next to the 5 star hotel (disclaimer - I will neither confirm nor deny that I have done that, but damn those German river police boats are seriously impressive - more like a "pocket battleship" than a police cruiser).

  3. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    I gloat! Hear me gloat!

    Thank you Rudyard Kipling.

  4. smudge Silver badge

    might like an article?

    Have you tried "New Scientist"? Worth a go.

    In fact, they could do with a regular technology column. Step into Barry Fox's shoes :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: might like an article?

      If they had a regular science column I'd probably renew my (very lapsed) sub

  5. Omgwtfbbqtime Silver badge
    Big Brother

    It sounds more fun than real camping – i.e. mud, earwigs and a half-mile hike to the nearest shitter

    Real camping involves a spade, damp bogroll and a20 yards waddle to the treeline not a half mile walk to the shitter.

    People don't know they're born.

    1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

      Re: In my day

      In my day with camped on mountains without tents or sleeping bags and dug latrine holes in the rock with our fingernails. etc.

      1. TonyJ Silver badge

        Re: In my day

        "...In my day with camped on mountains without tents or sleeping bags and dug latrine holes in the rock with our fingernails. etc...."

        You had fingernails??? Damn you and your luxury items...

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge

          Re: In my day

          You had fingernails??? Damn you and your luxury items...

          And we had to bring our own mountains too. If we were lucky the group was large enough that there were some to carry the trees.

      2. muddysteve

        Re: In my day

        "In my day with camped on mountains without tents or sleeping bags and dug latrine holes in the rock with our fingernails. etc."

        Camping without tents or sleeping bags - isn't that just called "stopping".

        1. TonyJ Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: In my day

          @muddysteve...I genuinely wish I could upvote that more than once. Really made me chuckle out loud.

        2. Chris G Silver badge

          Re: In my day

          Without tents or sleeping bags is called 'the army'. Usually because the transport wallahs have pissed off to the other end of whatever country you are in with most of your gear, including the tea and toilet paper.

      3. Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble? Silver badge

        Re: In my day

        @disgustedoftunbridgewells

        You tell that to the young people of today...and they won't believe you.

      4. John Styles

        Re: In my day

        My late (much older) brother had some sort of 'book of facts for boys' dating back to the early 50s. It has a section on camping which had a paragraph beginning 'When attending to the wants of nature...'.

        It was only years later I worked out what the hell it was on about.

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: In my day

          I hope I'm not the only one who interpreted 'attending to the wants of nature' as tossing off a shrew.

          No? Just me then. Look, if a few more of you realised that rodents don't have thumbs, maybe you'd be more sympathetic to their plight.

    2. Paul Cooper

      Re: It sounds more fun than real camping

      No, REAL camping means digging a flat spot in the snow on the glacier for your tent, making sure the poles are well embedded so it won't blow away in a gale and remembering not to collect snow for drinking water from near the red flag that marks the area used for other functions! Other horrors include living on preserved food, and cooking on a primus (gas doesn't work in the cold) in a double walled tent (what could go wrong with that?)

      The good news is that few other organisms are daft enough to even TRY to survive in those conditions!

      Before anyone takes me TOO seriously, a well-known aphorism amongst polar scientists is "Any fool can be uncomfortable in a tent!"

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: It sounds more fun than real camping

        few other organisms are daft enough to even TRY to survive in those conditions

        Other than (of course, North Pole only) polar bears.

        Tent vs hungry polar bear isn't a fair contest.

        1. MrT

          Re: Tent vs hungry polar bear isn't a fair contest.

          It must be the Zips - unnatural barriers to anything in a hurry... ;-)

  6. muddysteve

    Gloating

    If you are taking a riverside holiday in a narrow boat, then the people on the boats in the actual river would be gloating (as well as floating - and boating).

  7. J.G.Harston Silver badge

    Antikythera Mechanism

    Nobody needs an excuse to go off on a tangent about the Antikythera Mechanism.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Antikythera Mechanism

      A chap on YouTube called Clickspring is actually making one, in interesting instalments.

      And the tools possibly used too...

      1. Russell Chapman Esq.

        Re: Antikythera Mechanism

        Damn, you beat me to it. I was going to mention Clickspring too, he is an amazing engineer and his attention to detail is incredible. That clock he made! Here is the link to his channel for any who are interested.

        https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCworsKCR-Sx6R6-BnIjS2MA/videos

        1. DropBear Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: Antikythera Mechanism

          Lots of Clickspring fans around here apparently...

          1. Russell Chapman Esq.

            Re: Antikythera Mechanism

            We are a weird bunch of commentards, I don't work in IT but enjoy keeping up to date with technology, at the same time we are people who enjoy engineering and science. I don't feel like a dinosaur but I do wonder if we are dinosaurs, in the sense, people like us seem to be, becoming ever rarer.

            1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

              Re: Antikythera Mechanism

              Might actually visit that museum if at least one of my papers to a conference in Athens gets accepted. Fingers crossed. I would be surprised if the organisers didn't add a tour of the museum to the conference programme

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                " I would be surprised if the organisers didn't add a tour of the museum to the conference programme"

                Nah, everyone would skip the tour and would instead stay back at the hotel, networking over coffee.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Antikythera Mechanism

              >I don't work in IT

              I don't *work* in IT. I'm employed in IT but that's something entirely different.

              AC because I know other people here read El Reg.

              1. MrT

                Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                I don't *work* in IT. I'm employed in IT but that's something entirely different.

                AC because I know other people here read El Reg.

                "Hey <insert name of everyone with whom we've ever shared an IT office>, is that you?"

                No-one ever lists their own name. It's mysterious - an Enigma, even...

            3. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

              @ Russell Chapman Esq.

              > ...I do wonder if we are dinosaurs, ...

              Easy check: Is you skin really scaly, are your arms somewhat tiny, and did you have a Triceratops for breakfast? Congratulations, you are a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

              Note, however, if your skin is just somewhat scaly, your hands are really tiny, and all you are chasing is women who run away in disgust. Bad luck, you are the US president.

              1. Russell Chapman Esq.

                Re: @ Russell Chapman Esq.

                So, Mr Unhappy Cabbage, we meet once again. Do you prefer being sliced or diced before being tossed into vinegar? Mwhaaaaaaaaa

                1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

                  Re: @ Russell Chapman Esq.

                  Grumpy, not unhappy, DAMMIT!

                  P.S.: vinegar is fine for me.

              2. Ellipsis
                Coat

                Re: @ Russell Chapman Esq.

                > you are the US president

                Also: Did you fire a Rex. T for breakfast?

                1. Russell Chapman Esq.

                  Re: @ Russell Chapman Esq.

                  If I'm going to fire anything for breakfast, it will be the bacon and sausage on the grill, served with a bowl of kedgeree

            4. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

              Re: Antikythera Mechanism

              "I don't feel like a dinosaur but I do wonder if we are dinosaurs, in the sense, people like us seem to be, becoming ever rarer."

              There is evidence that today's children have higher IQs than our generation - but remember IQ measures abstract thought not practical ability,

              In the same way, dinosaurs did all right when they stopped all that ground-based lumbering and took to flight.

              1. Russell Chapman Esq.

                Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                Marvellous, dinosaur shit from high, Maybe it wasn't an asteroid that took us all out :D

                1. swampdog
                  Angel

                  Re: Antikythera Mechanism - dinousaurs

                  You mean dinosaurs invaded us in their asteroid spaceship 65 million years ago? That explains why their bones are all over the place. Archeologists really screwed up there. Someone should tell 'em!

                  Thank our dinosaur overloads for their faulty braking thrusters .. is all I can say.

                  1. Esme

                    Re: Antikythera Mechanism - dinousaurs

                    Yeah - that ruddy great crater by the Yucatan peninsula wasn't an asteroid, it was a Kerbal ship lithobraking!

                2. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

                  Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                  "Marvellous, dinosaur shit from high"

                  Yes, it doesn't do car paint any good. But it does produce some excellent fertiliser.

              2. Mage Silver badge

                Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                Education, practice at similar problems etc gives a massive boost to IQ score. The inventor of it said it doesn't measure intelligence, but just compares people of a similar age and background. The USA in particular ignored that as the IQ tests inherent biases made most ethnic minorities and people with darker skin score worse.

            5. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

              Re: Antikythera Mechanism

              I was trying to figure stuff out as soon as I could toddle. I don't think it's at all environment, most definitely genetic. That being said, those of us off engineering/making/whatevah are not out and about. Rather the people you do see everywhere are those that are consuming rather than making. Usually their nose stuck up in their phone.

              Whenever I do run into a young person that's bent on engineering I make every effort to encourage them including my time and what resources I have. Never enough of us.

              [My mother says that I was at a light socket trying to figure out what it was used for. Having failed to get a reaction from it, I wet both fingers and put them across the contacts. On getting shocked I said, "Mommy, wall bite." Her reply was, "Yes Brian, they do that." She's the electronic engineer half of my parents.]

            6. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
              Joke

              Re: Antikythera Mechanism

              @Russell Chapman Esq.

              +1

              We are a weird bunch of commentards...

              The votes stand at 23 as I post this. As 23 seems to be the going rate for Diplomatic Expulsions, I expect Putin will come along and attend to that

              1. Russell Chapman Esq.

                Re: Antikythera Mechanism

                One couldn't give a fig about Putin, or any other politician

    2. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      Re: Antikythera Mechanism

      "Nobody needs an excuse to go off on a tangent about the Antikythera Mechanism."

      Tangent? Possibly more epicyclic.

    3. pɹɐʍoɔ snoɯʎuouɐ
      Boffin

      Re: Antikythera Mechanism

      "Nobody needs an excuse to go off on a tangent about the Antikythera Mechanism."

      to go off at a sort of tangent, there is a nice bloke over in Australia, he has a YouTube channel called "clickspring". He usually does clock type stuff, but for the last year or so he has been doing a series remaking the Antikythera mechanism, using a mix of tools that would have been available back in the day to show how it would have been made, but using modern machinery for the grunt work once demonstrated with the ancient tools, even demonstrating how files and other cutting equipment are made.

      Its worth a look, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCworsKCR-Sx6R6-BnIjS2MA/featured

    4. Jack of Shadows Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Antikythera Mechanism

      Yep, screw the conference. You'd find me examining it every hour the museum is open.

  8. Dr_N Silver badge
    Pint

    Field conferences in nice places.

    There's always a hard core of attendees who play hooky. Hence why they are no longer held in places like Athens.

    1. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: Field conferences in nice places.

      The more prudent approach would be to just stop organizing those "networking over coffee" type activities. I've never attended a conference where those actually draw any crowds, even if they are in the middle of nowhere with nothing better around to do people prefer staying in their room and have an hour of downtime than be forced to be in a predictable location so that annoying people can track them down. Because that's what it always boils down to, the people you WANT to talk to are being kept busy by boring sacks of shit trying to sell them on the idea of recycling pencil shavings and when they become available you yourself have been latched onto by a brain leech sapping your will to live. True networking is done by inviting someone to go grab a drink somewhere out of the way and far away from where anybody from uninvolved parties can pin you down.

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: Field conferences in nice places.

        I guess having an activity of "networking over the Antikythera Mechanism" is probably being a little too obvious?

        Or maybe some people would be wondering what network speed it could achieve?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gleeting

    A tad close to gleet — see the Urban Dictionary or Roger's Profanisaurus. Could be a consequence of bunking off conference sessions.

  10. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    Glamping?

    An added problem with these new-fangled 'words' (hey, why don't we invent a word to describe them, something with a nice classical ring - neo-logisms?) where was I? Oh yes, An added problem is the pain caused to translators around the globe. I was on a Welsh course a couple of years back and one of the tasks was to devise a suitable translation for 'glamping' that caught the flavour of the original. Our best effort was 'pabell posh' (Lit. posh tent). Anyone know what it is in German?

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Glamping?

      devise a suitable translation for 'glamping' that caught the flavour

      The Gaidhlig[1] word for database is "stor data"..

      [1] Scottish Gaelic.

      1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

        Re: Glamping?

        The Gaidhlig[1] word for database is "stor data"..

        The boring Welsh word in 'databas', a better one is 'cronfa data' (data reservoir, data hoard)

        1. Alistair Dabbs

          Re: Glamping?

          I like the sound of "data hoard". Does its security system involve dragons? I mean, it's a hoard and it's Welsh. There have to be dragons.

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Glamping?

        The Gaidhlig[1] word for database is "stor data".

        And almost on that topic - does anyone here read ogham? See today's (Saturday) Google doodle.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Glamping?

          Replying to my own post - as far as I can make out the inscription just says GOOGLE. Who'd have guessed!

    2. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Glamping?

      Our best effort was 'pabell posh' (Lit. posh tent). Anyone know what it is in German?

      A better designed and engineered tent, I expect.

    3. Ellipsis
      Boffin

      Re: Glamping?

      > Anyone know what it is in German?

      Well, “glamorous” is “glamourös” and “camping” is “Camping”, so the inevitable (if disappointing) answer is Glamping

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Glamping?

      "Our best effort was 'pabell posh' (Lit. posh tent)."

      But Shirley, in the spirit of "glamping", that should become "pabosh"? Having said that, you're contracting and inventing, not translating, so what you really want is a literal translation of "glamorous camping" into Welsh then contract the result into something pronounceable (which ought to be easy for a Welsh speaker)

    5. swampdog
      Coat

      Re: Glamping?

      "Anyone know what it is in German?"

      FreiOfenArbeit

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Glamping?

      > Anyone know what it is in German?

      Hochwertigausgerüstetvorübergehendfreienwohnen

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Aristotle Dabbs". I saw what you did there.

  12. Alistair Dabbs

    1901

    A note to pedants. I am aware that the Antikythera Mechanism artefacts were recovered in 1901, not 1900 as stated in my column. I typed 1901. The irony of cyberpixies from the gremlinic dimension turning the clock back by one year in an article that's actually about a clock isn't lost on me.

    1. DropBear Silver badge
      IT Angle

      Re: 1901

      There's nothing to be ashamed of, really - let he who never mistakenly started a 0-based loop from 1 throw the first stone... :)))

    2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: 1901

      A note to pedants

      Pedants? Round here? Nah mate, never seen[1] one..

      [1] Largely, I suspect, becuase I know very few other people that read El Reg and fewer still that post..

    3. Ellipsis
      Joke

      Re: 1901

      Please send corrections to corrections@theregister.co.uk

  13. Andrew Yeomans

    Swagging breaks

    And I thought "Networking coffee breaks" were to see how much swag you could extract from vendors who you would never buy from.

    1. DuchessofDukeStreet

      Re: Swagging breaks

      That's the BOFH approach....

    2. fidodogbreath Silver badge

      Re: Swagging breaks

      Which, if done at a luxury conference center, would no doubt be dubbed "glagging."

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    two sorts of conference

    1) Serious. These are generally somewhere bloody awful (with 2-star accommodation a few kilometers from the meeting in Central Europe in November taking place over your weekend)

    2) Fun. These are held in 5-star accommodation on tropical island resorts, with large breaks for "networking"

    1. John G Imrie Silver badge

      Re: two sorts of conference

      And the people who get invited to each are

      1) You

      2) Management.

  15. Ellipsis
    Flame

    Inadequately lit hotel conference rooms

    This. So much this! Why is it a thing?

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Inadequately lit hotel conference rooms

      It's everywhere because "green". (translation, penny pinching on the 'leccy bill)

  16. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    That should be "glamoating" to follow the model.

    Which makes it no better.

    I'm fed up with people coining new uses of existing words just to be clixby.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bah!

      Why? It's a perfectly cromulent thing to do!

  17. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Coat

    On heat...

    Comper Fertility Tracker is designed to help a woman track her body temperature over time. Or in other words, to find out when she's – quite literally – on heat.

    Measuring core body temperature - for low a tech cheap solution, use a rectal thermometer.

    Admittedly, somewhat inconvenient to use in the middle of say a supermarket whilst doing the weekly shopping. But performing the insemination right there and then would also be frowned upon even of the time was right

    1. Voidstorm
      Joke

      Re: On heat...

      It also means you could never show your face in Tesco's again, either. Badoom-tish. :)

  18. Andus McCoatover
    Windows

    El. Reg. You complete and utter B*ast*ards!

    Having been tickled by the concept of the Antikythera Mechanism, I've just wasted a perfectly good Friday afternoon's VDT* reading up on it!

    (*VDT - Valuable Drinking Time)

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: El. Reg. You complete and utter B*ast*ards!

      "Having been tickled by the concept of the Antikythera Mechanism"

      You've come to el Reg to effectively admit you've never heard of it before now?

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: El. Reg. You complete and utter B*ast*ards!

      @Andus McCoatover

      Having been tickled by the concept of the Antikythera Mechanism

      There is a tenuous link in that statement...

      Professors Hawking and Dodd. RIP

    3. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: El. Reg. You complete and utter B*ast*ards!

      The two activities are not mutually exclusive you know.

  19. Voidstorm

    " Brings you trully natural feeling in mouth"

    Alternatively : "Chinese kung fu theatre bring deep feeling in me". ;)

    1. fidodogbreath Silver badge

      Glenglish

      My favorite line on the Comper website:

      Based on your basal body temperature data, Comper App can accurately predict your next accurately predict your nex (It's extra sentence that need to be deleted) menstrual cycle and ovulation.

      ...while elsewhere bragging about their attention to detail in the product design.

  20. allan wallace

    The Antikythera Mechanism is surely the FIRST recorded piece of Information technology!

    The Antikythera Mechanism is surely the FIRST recorded piece of Information technology!

    Awesome tech! Can't wait to see it at some point soon!

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

      Re: The Antikythera Mechanism is surely the FIRST recorded piece of Information technology!

      I understand it was manufactured by Ithaka Business Machines.

      1. fidodogbreath Silver badge

        Re: The Antikythera Mechanism is surely the FIRST recorded piece of Information technology!

        Can you imagine how much the service contract must've cost?

    2. diver_dave

      Re: The Antikythera Mechanism is surely the FIRST recorded piece of Information technology!

      There is a very good Nova episode on it. Including how thdy built a reproduction and worked out the number of teeth on each cog.

      Well worth an hour.

  21. Tom Paine Silver badge

    HMHB

    Top marks for the Half Man Half Biscuit reference. (new album out now!)

  22. Ben Bonsall

    Surely gloating is an irish lightbulb?

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