* Posts by Chris G

3008 posts • joined 18 Oct 2007

Machines learned to assemble IKEA’s semi-disposable furniture

Chris G
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Re: Real men?

" interacting with other humans only with a club?

Isn't that just a Geordie* on a weekend?

* Feel free to substitute for a person from another region."

Ah yes! there are a few people I have met to whom the suggestion ' Let's go clubbing at the weekend' would be a bad idea.

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Chris G
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Re: Not the real world

Real men don't need torque settings , they know the difference between tight and too tight.

One of those crappy flat pack chairs is a 5 minute job for me or my wife, twenty minutes for that, shows a serious lack of Krypton factor.

As for the robots, they should be 'fully' programmed to assemble the furniture and then recycle it at the dump. Flat pack furniture should be regarded as 'something to do when it's raining', it's not actually intended to be used to sit/lay on or store stuff in it and it's not even good to burn, too many environmentally unfriendly chemicals bonding the sawdust together.

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Time to ditch the front door key? Nest's new wireless smart lock is surprisingly convenient

Chris G
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@Muscleguy.

I have recently installed new front and back doors on my house, a while before I bought it, it had squatters in there. I bought steel doors that come with the frame in a two panel Georgian style, the locks are 5 point with 3 security hinges that have lugs protruding into the frame when the door is closed, the inside of the door is foam filled but has welded connectors throughout the inner structure. When I fitted the frames I used frame fixings that go 15cm into the wall so to get past my doors requires destroying the walls. My windows all have bars on them too (Standard for Spanish country houses), there is always an accessible key close to each door from the inside to allow rapid exit in the case of fire. I can't imagine any IoT device that will make me feel better than the secure system I have.

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Chris G
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Re: Drilling Brass

A nitride coated drill bit of around 8mm on the slow setting of a decent cordless drill will go through any brass and steel cored lock that I have met so far, the little springs that drive the tumblers on a Eurolock will pause it for a moment but that's all. I work with a maintenance team and lost keys/jammed locks are common enough in a fair sized company with some older properties, most are easy to get through.

Oddly, if you turn up at a door in a workman like fashion and start drilling the lock out, even in a public place, no one gives you a second glance.

The only time I have been questioned was in my early twenties on a Sunday morning trying the keys from a big bunch on a bank door, a panda car stopped and asked me facetiously if I needed help.

We had a painting and decorating contract with the bank and often had keys, getting into any bank is relatively easy, getting into the vault, a little harder, not difficult in an engineering sense but definitely takes more time, plus the alarms have been quite sophisticated for decades.

One the things that should be a no on this nest thing is the option to automatically switch off the alarm when keying the lock, having to go in and disable the alarm is like two factor authentication, more secure and safer.

This is yet another fix for stuff that is unbroken.

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Facebook privacy audit by auditors finds everything is awesome!

Chris G
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Explain to me

What are the accountants counting to gain the opinion that FB's privacy practices add up to okay?

Good practices 51, bad practices 49?

Bean counters are not the most imaginative of people, of course there's always a possibility of counting a brown envelope.

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Planned European death ray may not need Brit boffinry brain-picking

Chris G
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Lasers! We don' need no stinkin' lasers

See title; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBRUonZ_YI0

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Chris G
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Re: Useless

"Or divert all military funds into either impossible imaginary weapon systems or platforms so expensive you can never afford to let come near harms way"

Would a multi role combat aircraft that needs a regular 'patch Tuesday and being maintained in a country run by a loony, qualify?

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Chris G
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@ Voland.

Yep! for the foreseeable future it is still down to 'The last 5 yards', well, actually a bit further than that in general but house clearing and hand to hand is still a possibility. The biggest problem for modern soldiers is the increasingly large battery carrying capability, pretty soon frontline personnel will have to carry a crap load of surveillance and telemetry for the General Staff back at base to mess with, leaving the front liners with enough capacity for a catapult/slingshot and picking up stones for ammo.

Progress!

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Drama brews on high seas as Playmobil ship running out of steam

Chris G
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It may be worth them contacting safetyandsecuritynet.com with the details, a Caribbean sailing security group who might be able to get the sailing fraternity to keep an eye out for the Adventure and give it a battery boost. Yachtties like this kind of thing.

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Eight months after Equifax megahack, some Brits are only just being notified

Chris G
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Timely

"We have contacted Equifax for comment and its PR agency has promised to send us a timeline of the credit reference agency's efforts to contact hack victims. We will update this article if it responds. ®"

If their performance so far is anything to go by, you should have something from them around mid October.

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BBC extends Capita Audience Services contract to 25 years

Chris G
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Interested to know

How a publicly funded organisation can decide to withhold how much it is paying for services or anything else?

The Beeb seems to think it can do what it likes with public money (and does) but doesn't seem to be accountable to anyone.

Also curious to know how much owed license fees Crapita recovered for it's 1/2 Beellion, was it value for money and a net gain?

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Cambridge Analytica's ex-CEO decides not to front UK Parliamentary Committee again

Chris G
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Fireside chat

Nix should count himself lucky; three or four centuries back he would have received the invitation for the appearance in front of parliamentary officials from a bloke in a tin shirt with a couple of mates with halberds.

After the initial chat he would have been invited downstairs for a chat by a real fire complete with tongs, a poker and another bloke who could put them places one wouldn't want to think about.

Now, it's just a load of questions that could lead (eventually) to a comfy cell in an open prison, that's if he hasn't found a new job in a country with no extradition treaty with the UK, before they get that far.

If I was in charge I would revoke his passport.

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Hello DARKNESS, my old friend. I've come to talk with you again... about a 10,000-pixel alien-hunting camera

Chris G
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Re: Bets are on

"It'll be the same telescope looking back at them.*"

The bummer with that will be; having found a habitable planet with life on it, there is no practicable way to get there. ( To exploit the natives/minerals/thaumaturgic energy etc.)

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Chris G
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Re: Good to see your tax money being wasted on something

DON'T feed the trolls!

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Facebook faces foe formation in facial fingering fight

Chris G
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Flakbook

Between this and the other flack farcebook is receiving it could bring them down, the worry then would be who gets all the data when they are flogging off assets?

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Size does matter, chaps: Oversized todgers an evolutionary handicap

Chris G
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I don't think I'm at risk in evolutionary terms but I'never had any complaints.

Laughter,but no complaints.

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Software gremlin robs Formula 1 world champ of season's first win

Chris G
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Re: Follows old adage...

Lotus were the first to make 'Ground Effect' really work ( can't remember the year) they caned Ferrari in a race or two who did their usual bitching and had it banned.

A mention above of the BRM 'H' 16, I have some engineering drawings for that somewhere.

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Best thing about a smart toilet? You can take your mobile in without polluting it

Chris G
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Get nailed by a carpenter

"the survey found that carpenters and civil servants were most likely to get jiggy on a regular basis"

The above gives me hope, I retire in two weeks and then move to my new house , it has a workshop in the garden where I intend to make and sell furniture.

A few years back one of my clients had a Jap Super Loo installed, the ringwash feature must have been designed by Karcher, he told me when he first tested it, it nearly lifted him off the seat while giving him a power enema, kind of put me off trying it.

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El Reg needs you – to help build an automated beer-transporting robot

Chris G
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First few thoughts

Given that this is El Reg I don't think a simple low key solution is suitable, something more akin to an ED209 but with tracks and/or stair negotiating capabilities would be better, plus it will be noticed and served at a busy bar.

Anti spillage is a major consideration, perhaps adapting something like a Steadicam Zephyr which has a 10.5Kg max load would work, that would allow for around a dozen pints/trip.

Battery life should be sufficient to provide enough power for whatever constitutes a working day at The Reg, or automatic docking to a charger between trips if such a thing as between exists.

Initially as suggested above a 'Beer Token' to be worn by the escort so that the Alebot can locate and follow the escort perhaps while the 'AI' is learning it's job.

For obstacle detection and avoidance, some interesting mm wave sensing is being developed that is good for urban and cross country environments, 360 degree sensing is advisable to detect obstacles and beer snafflers, on which note the armaments of the ED209 may come in handy to fend off snafflers.

As this could come under the RoTM label it may be a good idea to include beer appreciation and ingestion routines so that in the event of it trying to take over mankind, we can get it falling down drunk then the hangover the next day will take care of it's World Domination ambitions.

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Facebook: Look at our latest bug bounty that proves we're serious!

Chris G
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Re: ’Twas brillig...

I'm fairly sure a 'slithy tove' has just been in front of a Senate Committee.

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Chris G
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I like the fact that they took pains to mention they are 'Politically Neutral'

I interpret that as, they are willing to interfere in any election for anyone.

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Fear the Reaper: Man hospitalised after eating red hot chilli pepper

Chris G
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For the brave/mildly insane, here: https://www.southdevonchillifarm.co.uk/online-shop/extreme-heat-products/page-2/ is a good place to go. I have tried some of their products and stick to the wuss level but I have friends who highly recommend the more rarefied items.

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Chris G
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Re: Obviously not Thai...

Some years ago I used to knock around with a Ghanaian mate who was a chef, when he first learned that I like a good curry he invited me and my girlfriend round for dinner one evening. His girlfiend warned me that his curries tended to be quite hot, so I told her I like a good hot curry.

What she didn't tell me was about the African salad on the side, it had tiny green chillies in it that Fred ate like sweets, when I ate one it was not only bloody hot but on the side I chewed it felt as though I had just been punched by Muhammad Ali.

It also taught me the true meaning of the word afterburner.

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Chris G
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"Me: Ever smelled 100 tons of 'fresh' kitty litter?"

Made me laugh tea down my nostrils, missed the keyboard but my white cat is no longer sleeping next to me.

The weirdest 'pet' eating chilli was in my horse keeping days, we often use to trailer up and take the horses down to Camber Sands for weekends in the winter. In the evenings we would cook up pre prepared food on a driftwood fire, my mate John had brought some chilli con carne made with habanero/scotch bonnet peppers, when he put his plate down his mare finished off what was on the plate, chilli and rice.

The following day we clocked her at 43MPH running alongside the pickup truck.

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Uber JUMPs, slurps San Francisco bike biz

Chris G
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Bicycle battery explodes

An electric bike sharing company admitted one of it's batteries exploded under a riders derriere. They said ' we vet all of our bikes,this one that slipped past the system, we're sending it for recycling.'

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Descent of the Machines: Aussie firm boasts of underwater drone swarms

Chris G
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These should help if they make another finding Nemo sequel in the EAC.

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My PC makes ‘negative energy waves’, said user, then demanded fix

Chris G
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Re: The 'G' key ?

There are many people who have spent lifetimes looking for the G spot and failed to find it so Roger should consider himself lucky.

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Don't want to alarm you, but defence bods think North Korea could nuke UK 'within a few years'

Chris G
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Re: Nuclear option

" I'd seriously contribute to a Crowd-Fund call for a few canoes for the RN matelots to paddle around in,"

I'm in, I'm moving soon to an area with no nearby lakes , rivers or sea so they can have my sea kayak as a starter for their new fleet.

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Chris G
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Re: Kiwis can do it. Why not Kim?

The Kiwis can put stuff into orbit?

I'm off the buy a hard hat and a shovel, I need to dig a sheep proof shelter.

Which reminds me, what's the re-entry speed of a sheep in semi-vacuum?

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Chris G
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One of the things that I find strange about the whole case is that the Skripals are still alive. When I did my basic training in the '70s, we were told about NBC, nerve agents being the C(hemical) and that micrograms of nerve gas were sufficient to cause death in three minutes. So how were the Skripals able to leave their house (which is where one report I read says they were poisoned) and go to a park bench to be found critically ill.

Our training which included a film of a goat having had a nerve agent administered, described ( within the three minutes) the course from ingestion to death; ingestion via contact, inhalation or ingestion, first symptom runny nose and watery eyes, increased pulse then heightened respiration, cramps and spasms becoming more severe to they point of spastic movement, extreme vomiting and relaxation of sphincters, here I am sure there were a couple of other things and then death.

In Three Minutes!

Additionally I am sure I read that investigators found something like two grams of the stuff on a front door handle, two grams would be enough to take out a village.

We were trained how to use syrettes filled with atropine IIRC which in order to do any good had to be self administered at the first sign of symptoms. That something nasty has happened is clear, what exactly has happened is very unclear due to what seems to be a lot of BS in the media from all directions.

Smoke and mirrors.

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Holy helmets, Batman! Bane-like mask lets you 'talk' to computers without making a sound

Chris G
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Not too sure

Anyone would want to hear the things I mutter to myself.

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*Thunk* No worries, the UPS should spin up. Oh cool, it's in bypass mode

Chris G
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Re: My one win over beancounters

Nuclear war exemptions have been standard in many British policies since the '60s I worked for a short time in car insurance, Saturday mornings we had to man the phones as the switchboard girls were off, because we were speaking to potential clients we had to have read the T&Cs on the policy.

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Donald Trump whines and dines Oracle co-CEO Catz – reports

Chris G
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Don't know they're bourne

"bourne by the American taxpayer"

If the ' leader of the free world' can't be arsed to spell correctly, what else can't he be arsed to do?

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2001: A Space Odyssey has haunted pop culture with anxiety about rogue AIs for half a century

Chris G
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Re: Headline?

It was not only Aasimov who engendered that fear, many writers in the comics of the '40s and '50s wrote and drew similar tales, in comics like Strange Tales, Tales to Astonish, Weird Science etc. In the '50s when I was about 8 or 9 years old my neighbour was a cool kid of fifteen, he was a Teddy Boy and him and his mates used to buy all of those comics and pass them on to me, I had piles of them, wish I still had them I could probably retire wealthy.

The one I remember is where a huge computer controls regiments of robots that enslave mankind, one day an old guy is cleaning around the evil computer and knocks the plug out of the socket...........

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Wanna work for El Reg? Developers needed for headline-writing AI bots

Chris G
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Pint

Re: A Rake's Progress? :-)

"These laborers, using closely guarded expertise passed down from generation to generation, use keyboards and mice to fuse computer engineering knowhow, puns, and functional alcoholism to form our article titles."

Now that, made me laugh out loud.

Have one on me!

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Chris G
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Spare Time

It should be a versatile bot that can double up as a program that will operate a tea and sandwich making robot, after all how much of it's time will be taken up with headline writing?

Could include a Home Brewing subroutine to manage the cupboard under the stairs.

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Any social media accounts to declare? US wants travelers to tell

Chris G
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Re: I'm Amish.

There are not many Amish outside of Canada and the US, though according to Google there are Mennonite communities in Mexico and South America, no Europeans.

So using that excuse won't get you in.

American people are wonderful, I lived in N Cal for two years and traveled a bit, the government and politics not so much, the immigration folks just like many of those at the borders of the UK suck.

I think I am limited to El Reg and a very limited interaction on Linked In, why would I keep an old passport number, I don't even remember old phone numbers or for that matter my wife's mobile number, it's in my phone and on my laptop and tablet.

I recently had to prove my identity for the UK,( I'm a Brit) I haven't lived there as a resident for 19 years, have no credit history there and do not receive utility bills here, it's all online, so unable to jump through the particular hoops that the UK seems to think proves who you are. Even to the point of not wanting to accept a notarised document with signed photos and passport copy and in Spain it takes two separate notaries to do that.

Fortunately I no longer have any urge to go to the States, or the UK for that matter.

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Magic Leap ships headsets at last, but you'll need a safe

Chris G
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Re: And everyone here said it was a con...

It's real is it, can I buy one for Easter?

No, so not actually real yet but it may have possibilities.

" The "magic leap" will be when your headset is capable of locating everything around you from your position – effectively seeing the same way we do with our eyes."

Regarding the above, this from Quora.com ;

." If vision uses a conservative 30% of the brain's processing power then we have to simulate 33 billion neurons. 10.4 x 33 = 46.2. 46.2 x 82,994 =3,834,322 processors to process only 1 sec of vision."

If Magic Leap can simulate that, then they are game changers and worth the billions and the hype.

If not, must try harder.

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Facebook exec extracts foot from mouth: We didn't really mean growth matters more than human life

Chris G
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"I didn't agree with it when I was writing it"

Does this twat think so little of the rest of the world that he thinks they would believe this bullshit?

The correct description for what Facebook does is AntiSocial Media, it does nothing positive for society.

As for many of the staff, going by some of their comments, bunch of silly cultists.

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Autonomous vehicle claims are just a load of hot air… and here's why

Chris G
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Trollface

Re: Correcting tea misinformation

25 degrees below boiling from which scale, C or F?

I can tell you that 75 Celsius is going to give you a cup of warm off colour water, I drink my tea at almost 60 degrees according to my laser thermometer. Standard 'British' black tea needs boiling water, all the other stuff conforms to Alf Garnett's foreign muck or poncy like Earl Grey.

Coffee on the other hand is destroyed by boiling water and will likely be come bitter, 97C is apparently the max for coffee but it depends on the bean, the blend, the roast and how it is ground. Strangely, there are courses you can go on in the UK for coffee making but I have never heard of a course for tea making.

Presumably because tea making should be inherent in British genes.

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Chris G
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Re: Also lefties love driver less cars...

I'm a lefty (I can show you the calluses) and I hate driverless cars. ( In spite of the dumb spell checker redlining it, driverless is one word, 'driver less cars' should mean a driver without cars.)

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Chris G
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Re: Double Bah!

I think the most expensive kettles are probably nuclear reactors, just not too keen on 'glow in the dark' tea.

Notwithstanding, the Bigboy is a serious locomotive at 6000plus HP.

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Chris G
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Re: Autopilot fun

Unless you are a 'Round the World Soloist' in the middle of a respectable ocean, the general rule is that someone is on an active watch. Normally though when sailing/cruising on autopilot you are doing somewhere between 2 and 6 knots depending on whether you are motoring or sailing and the wind and where it is relative to your course. That gives you, at those speeds time to react to impedimenta even if you are reading a book.

With allegedly self driving cars the rule until they are genuinely autonomous should be that the driver/ commander/watchperson should be as engaged and alert as any other driver with their hands in actual contact with a means of control should one of the aforementioned impedimenta appear suddenly in front of them.

An alternative, and this is radical out of the box thinking here, is to limit their speed and have a man witha red flag walking in front of them.

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SpaceX has a good day: Successful launch and FCC satellite approval

Chris G
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Re: CNN clickbait

"I have to go to El Reg or the BBC to get any actual news."

Out of the two, the BBC is more likely to be biased or wrong, El Reg at the risk of making their hats too small, is generally quite good at reporting.

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Details of 600,000 foreign visitors to UK go up in smoke thanks to shonky border database

Chris G
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Re: What did John Reid say over a decade ago... "the Home Office is not fit for purpose".

For 6 years of that decade, the Tin Lady was in charge, the remaining 2 years to date have been her imagination free friend Amber. I could never figure out how she could become PM and based on the subsequent performance, I still don't.

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Politicos whining about folks' data rights ought to start closer to home

Chris G
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I like this:

"The scandal over Cambridge Analytica's et al's use of Facebook data to microtarget potential voters in recent campaigns is perfect for a bit of political outrage, tapping into concerns about public manipulation and rigged elections."

Political outrage now and later when coming up to election time; 'How do I do this?'

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$0.75 – about how much Cambridge Analytica paid per voter in bid to micro-target their minds, internal docs reveal

Chris G
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Re: big five personality scores

"I don't see aversion to Marmite in those tests. How accurate could it really be?"

So, aversion to Marmite is a good thing or a bad thing?

Or does it say something else?

In the interests of full disclosure; Marmite is always a requirement under the cheese on cheese on toast for me, preferably with extra mature cold sweat inducing cheddar.

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Chris G
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Re: "...psychological profiles...from roughly 75 cents to $5 apiece..."

You are absolutely right there JeffyPoooh; Mensa has nothing at all on El Reg.

I don't know what Mensa is like nowadays but after doing a couple of tests in my late teens I was invited to join, at a time when Mensa were insisting that they should really be in charge of government and the world because they were super intelligent.

I met one or two members and the old saw about 'anyone who wants to be a politician is automatically unfit for the job' applies well to them. On the other hand there are one or two commentards who,at least in their comments, sound fit to govern.

I might add I disqualify myself because the firing squads I would employ, may not be seen as very democratic.

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Happy 100th birthday to the Royal Air Force

Chris G
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My Grandfather was in the RFC during WWI he was a plumber so military logic made him a flight engineer, he flew on I think Handley Page Bombers among others. When the RFC became the RAF he automatically transferred, a short while later he was demobbed.

At the beginning of WWII he volunteered and was taken on as a Flight Sergeant but driving the Queen Mary recovery lorries, driving them both in the UK and Africa.

When he died he was one of the last few to have served in both wars and in both the RFC and the RAF so permission was given to the RAFA to have an RAF standard bearer and to play the last post at his funeral.

Both my father and his youngest brother served in the RAF, my father in the Western Desert in Marauders and his brother in the Western Desert as a ground crew engineer. One of my brothers is an officer running an Air Cadets unit. So Happy Birthday to the RAF it has played quite a big part in my family history.

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The Register Opera Company presents: The Pirates of Penzance, Sysadmin edition

Chris G
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Re: Ooh, tempting

Mary had a little lamb

Full of fun and frollicks

It jumped up

Into the air

And landed on it's......

A pity I can't upvote the ditty.

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