* Posts by Mike Richards

3980 posts • joined 28 Feb 2007

HMS Frigatey Mcfrigateface given her official name

Mike Richards
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Re: Towns again....

And the Flower class corvettes which included HMSs Geranium and Tulip amongst many others:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flower-class_corvette

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Mike Richards
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Typo

'In British service, frigates are broadly equipped to fight other surface warships and as anti-submarine vessels, a particular British specialism.'

Should be:

In British service, frigates are broadly equipped to deliver large amounts of money to BAE Systems whilst spending most of their lives waiting for vital equipment or under repair.

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Russia launches non-TERRIFYING satellite that focuses Sun's solar rays onto Earth

Mike Richards
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Been there, done that.

The US measured the properties of the upper atmosphere with the much bigger Echo passive communication satellites of the early 1960s:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Echo

The Russians do like their space mirrors though, they've tried and failed twice with the Znamya satellites:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Znamya_(satellite)

Every now and again there are some new gee-whizz 1950s-style articles about how the Russians will be bringing light to the winter tundra thanks to enormous mirrors hanging in space.

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Australia releases MH370 sea floor data but search is still off

Mike Richards
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Re: It is a salvage mission in international waters, China should take over the search

153 Chinese citizens were killed, so the state has a moral duty to investigate. Though 'moral' and the Communist Party are rarely bedfellows.

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UK government's war on e-cigs is over

Mike Richards
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Re: Ex-smoker, vaper here

'I'm vaping at work, and even in aeroplanes, without any complaints whatsoever! '

In planes? Interesting - the last few flights I've been on have specifically said that vaping is not allowed in the cabin.

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UK.gov snaps on rubber gloves, prepares for mandatory porn checks

Mike Richards
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Small government in action

'The government is also expected to announce plans to appoint a regulator to police the sex websites,'

Anyone want to hazard a name for the regulator?

Ofspurt?

The very strict regulator?

Paul Dacre?

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Truck spills slimy load all over Oregon road – drivers slip in eel slick

Mike Richards
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Should have used a hovercraft

Obligatory Python:

https://youtu.be/G6D1YI-41ao

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Slower US F-35A purchases piles $27bn onto total fighter jet bill

Mike Richards
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Re: Caveat emptor

With engine, but the go-faster stripes and sun roof option are extra.

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Hey, remember that monkey selfie copyright drama a few years ago? Get this – It's just hit the US appeals courts

Mike Richards
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Meanwhile - the photographer

Can't afford to replace his equipment or even attend the court case:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jul/12/monkey-selfie-macaque-copyright-court-david-slater

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Virgin Trains dodges smack from ICO: CCTV pics of Corbyn were OK

Mike Richards
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Rarest of things on a Virgin train

Paper reservation tags with the proper information.

The electronic one on Pendolinos are all too often not working, showing information for a completely different trip to the one you're on, or just saying 'Reserved'.

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Got a Windows Phone 8 mobe? It's now officially obsolete. Here's why...

Mike Richards
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Re: Going Nowhere soon?

I still have my Lumia 800 in a drawer for precisely the reason that it is very frugal on battery power when travelling. It's also tough as old boots, it's been dropped on various continents and is still working with barely a scratch.

The downloadable maps and that sensational interface designed for fat fingers were something I really miss on iOS or Android.

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Web inventor Sir Tim sizes up handcuffs for his creation – and world has 2 weeks to appeal

Mike Richards
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Damn I'm conflicted...

I've been praying for something to come along and kill Flash and Silverlight...

...but this?

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May the excessive force be with you: Chap cuffed after Star Trek v Star Wars row turns bloody

Mike Richards
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Re: In a fight over...

'Wasn't bab5 rendered on an an Amiga rendering farm, though? Using... what was it? Damn my memory... Maya?'

NewTek LightWave 3D.

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MH370 researchers refine their prediction of the place nobody looked

Mike Richards
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Re: Go find it

As well as Air France 447 which lay at 4km.

Although it long predates the introduction of flight recorders, heroic efforts were made to recover the wreck of BOAC 781 to work out what was wrong with the Comet 1. Can you imagine the frenzy of conspiracy wankers if they'd been around at a time when three of the world's most advanced airliners crashed in short order?

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Britain's warhead-watcher to simulate Trident nukes with Atos supercomputer

Mike Richards
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Simulated testing

I hope they still have a melodramatic countdown, put on dark glasses and turn away from the screen before pressing the button.

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Bonkers call to boycott Raspberry Pi Foundation over 'gay agenda'

Mike Richards
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Christ only knows what they'll do

When their Spectrum Vega turns up with its little rainbow stripe.

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Happy 4th of July: Norks tests another missile

Mike Richards
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Best bit

Norkistan brought our favourite newsreader out of retirement to tell us the news:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-40491138

Would it kill Fiona Bruce to look that happy when she's reading the headlines?

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SpaceX halts Intelsat 35e launch twice in a row

Mike Richards
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Re: BBRs are go!

'I'm sure the customer would have been offered the option.'

Gosh, I wonder if SpaceX are employing a second-hand car salesman: 'Here you go squire, lovely little rocket this one, just been flown round the world a couple of times. That? Oh don't worry about that, it'll just buff out. Now shall we go back to the office and talk numbers?'

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Extreme trainspotting on Britain's highest (and windiest) railway

Mike Richards
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Re: What is the gauge?

Brunel would approve of that sort of gauge, although he'd almost certainly want the train to go at 100mph and be powered by rockets.

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Exposed pipes – check. Giant pillows – check. French startup mega-campus opens

Mike Richards
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That's what's missing in the UK

Silicon Roundabout needs more scatter cushions and a not-at-all-disturbing giant teddy bear.

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Blighty's Department for Culture, Media & Sport gets 'digital' rebrand

Mike Richards
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Re: Just like in business .....

I like your thinking, may I suggest the Ministry of Windscale?

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Mike Richards
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Data protection?

'"[It] is fitting now to include Digital in the name. The department has taken on significant new responsibilities in recent years, so that half of its policy and delivery work now covers the digital sectors - telecommunications, data protection, internet safety, cyber skills and parts of media and the creative industries," she said.'

Eh?

Data protection is overseen by the Information Commissioner who reports to the ever-Orwellian sounding Ministry of Justice.

I wouldn't trust Bradley to competently organise an egg and spoon race for five year olds, having her overseeing GDPR is the stuff of nightmares.

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NASA: Bring on the asteroid, so we can chuck a fridge at it

Mike Richards
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'a non-threatening small asteroid'

Once we've hit it with a fridge it might go from 'non-threatening' to bloody furious.

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China pollutes ocean with bloody big rocket

Mike Richards
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That's what happens

When you fit your rocket with cheap Chinese fakes.

Seriously, better luck next time - it's always exciting to know another Moon mission is in the offing.

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Murdoch's £11.7bn Sky takeover referred to competition regulator

Mike Richards
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Re: He didn't win the Tories the election...

Just like the American law that forced him to become a naturalised citizen so he could get Fox Broadcasting.

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The bloke behind Star Fox is building a blockchain based casino. No, really

Mike Richards
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Jez San

Biggest claim to fame has to be Starglider surely?

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Four Brits cuffed in multimillion-quid Windows tech support call scam probe

Mike Richards
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As a suitable punishment, may I suggest anyone found guilty of running these scams is placed in a genuine computer support desk?

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The 'DUP' joins El Reg’s illustrious online standards converter

Mike Richards
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Base unit

Definitely one of the most unfeasibly large base units since the Farad came along.

There might be a few picoDUPs down the back of my sofa.

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Amadeus airline booking system TITSUP and it's not ransomware

Mike Richards
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Iberia, Cathay Pacific and - yes - BA all use Amadeus.

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Dixons Carphone stirs PC Curry, reports 10% profit gravy

Mike Richards
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For that sort of profit, they must have sold an additional extended insurance contract somewhere last year.

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Huge ransomware outbreak spreads in Ukraine and beyond

Mike Richards
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Re: The next stage

There have been some research papers where traffic analysis has been used to deanonymise some Bitcoin users. The researchers are usually kind enough to explain how their attack can be defeated:

E.g. http://fc14.ifca.ai/papers/fc14_submission_71.pdf

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HMS Windows XP: Britain's newest warship running Swiss Cheese OS

Mike Richards
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Re: We can see you have changed the underlying Warship hardware...

'Please enter your serial number which can be found on your ship's keel.'

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Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube create anti-terror group

Mike Richards
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I'm guessing Twitter is the one that dies in the third act and Facebook is the one secretly working for the bad guys.

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No way to sugarcoat this: I'm afraid Uranus opens and closes to accept particle streams

Mike Richards
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Weird planet.

It's not just lying on its side and with wildly different magnetic and rotational poles, but Uranus's magnetic field isn't even generated in its core. It's centred about 1/3 of the way out from the centre towards the north pole which suggests something electrically conductive is swirling away deep in Uranus.

Which leads to the second problem - Uranus is unbelievably cold and appears to have no internal source of heat, unlike the very similar Neptune which is seething away furiously.

We badly need to send another mission out there to take another look.

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India's Martian MOM clocks up 1,000 days circling the red planet

Mike Richards
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Re: What's eclipsing?

It's Mars.

MOM was in a very elliptical orbit (421.7 * 76,993.6 km) and would have been in eclipse close to apoareon when it was moving most slowly - hence the long eclipse.

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Concorde without the cacophony: NASA thinks it's cracked quiet supersonic flight

Mike Richards
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Perhaps we should pre-emptively ban it over here in revenge for the US's hissy fit over Concorde in the 1970s? America only got concerned about sonic booms when their own pig-ugly SST proved too lardy to get off the ground.

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UK parliamentary email compromised after 'sustained and determined cyber attack'

Mike Richards
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Just think...

...some of the people who will have weak passwords will previously have blindly voted for ID cards, RIPA, DRIPA and are gagging for backdoors into encryption.

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Blighty's first aircraft carrier in six years is set to take to the seas

Mike Richards
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Re: Off to the South China Sea...

Has anyone in Whitehall asked the US Navy if they're planning on using HMS Brenda to test the defences on China's self-build archipelago?

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Australian govt promises to push Five Eyes nations to break encryption

Mike Richards
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They have lots of clever mathematicians and computer scientists in Cheltenham who will be able to explain in great deal why you can't backdoor encryption without compromising security.

However, they will also have plenty of shiny-suited, newly-minted PPE graduates telling them that speeches promising to end terrorism and crime are polling viagra. And in the end, everything boils down to clinging to power.

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Report estimates cost of disruption to GPS in UK would be £1bn per day

Mike Richards
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Re: That said ..

;)

Whereas the lack of indicators suggests Audi drivers are driving using the Force.

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British Airways poised to shed 1,000 jobs to Capita

Mike Richards
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Re: Placing Bets

Inexplicably, no time soon.

Last year they turned over £11.4 billion making £1.5 billion in profit and had another £2.5 billion in the bank.

They must be selling a lot of those M&S sandwiches in economy.

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Months late, unaudited: ZX Spectrum reboot firm files accounts

Mike Richards
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Re: Accounts?

Sorry, UKIP's Paul Nuttall invented that about the same time he discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun.

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That minutes-long power glitch? It's going to cost British Airways £80m, IAG investors told

Mike Richards
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WW is only worried about the real victims - IAG's shareholders who might not award him a bonus this year.

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Curiosity drills into the watery origins of Mars

Mike Richards
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Re: Maybe I'm not understanding magnetite here...

I think the original geochemistry has been mangled either in the press release or in the Reg's article.

Magnetite and haematite are good indicators for the oxidation/reduction state of the conditions when a rock formed, or was altered by hydrothermal processes. Oxidation causes a process known as martitisation which sees the replacement of magnetite by haematite, whilst mushketovitisation has haematite being converted to magnetite due to reduction by hydrogen.

So you can work out the redox conditions in water from the sediments laid down at the time which gives you a clue of the different environments that would have been present. Examining iron oxides from the Gale sediments suggest the margins of the crater were generally oxidising whilst the central region was more typically highly-reduced.

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Mike Richards
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'minerals like Hematite which are rich in iron and magnesium'

Haematite = Fe2O3 - rich in iron, bugger all magnesium.

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DUP site crashes after UK general election

Mike Richards
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Ulster server says NOOOOOOO!

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Break crypto to monitor jihadis in real time? Don't be ridiculous, say experts

Mike Richards
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They don't need to - Open Signal is already available as an open source project so the nutters could roll their own messaging system.

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Mike Richards
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Re: even if it was possible

Re: escrow

'- I would not particularly trust US/UK/Chinese/Russian governments as citizen of non of those places'

Come on, you *know* the UK government would contract it out to Capita.

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Mike Richards
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'And it is worrying that so many of our leaders have not yet grasped the very basic concept that you can't have safe backdoors'

Hypothetical government minister. 'You are quite right. I am not calling for a backdoor, I am asking for a special golden key which acts just like a backdoor but can only be used by the good guys.'

Interviewer. 'Thank-you for your time, is there anything else you would like to share with a grateful nation?'

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Mike Richards
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Re: "The former policy wonk -

In terms of bollocks-per-minute it was rating about 1 Boris-per-second.

An immensely frustrating interview on both sides.

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