* Posts by Herby

2718 posts • joined 14 Dec 2007

Facebook posts put Pharma Bro Martin Shkreli in prison as a danger to society

Herby
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The lesson here...

Is that the internet is "forever" and "very public". Lose these lessons, and you are in a bit of trouble.

As for the former secretary of state, if she lost a hair for each of the lies she told, a cue ball would have more hair (probably by an order of magnitude).

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Uber loses bid to avoid trial in Waymo case

Herby
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Joke

This just in....

Uber for sale. Please take liabilities as well.

Google may get a bargain price then. You never know.

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Pennsylvania cops deploy electronics sniffer dog to catch child abusers

Herby
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I suspect...

That a dip in ammonia (let air dry) will probably do the trick.

As for the particular case, I suspect that they already had a warrant for the entire premises, and locating the nasty device was the task at hand, the pooch assisting. Just a time saver for the police who didn't want to paw through "everything".

Of course "encrypted cloud storage" is the order of the day.

Yes, beware of the BOFH!

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US government sued by 11 pissed-off travellers over computer searches

Herby
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Searches, Searches...

When you cross a frontier, EVERYTHING is subject to search for contraband. If a customs bozo opens up your suitcase and sees plans for (insert terrible thing here), what do you think he is going to do?

Yes, the problem is now compounded with the amount of data you can carry in such a small space, but is just the same. Try going to places like China where after they seize your laptop they put monitoring software on to see what subversive stuff you are doing and what secrets they can have you graciously ship back to them for competitive reasons.

I suspect the moral of the story is "Don't piss off a border agent".

It would be nice if we didn't need to do such things, but that ideal world sadly doesn't exist.

I'll probably get downvotes for this (*SIGH*)

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North Korea attacks Bitcoin bods to swell its war chest says FireEye

Herby
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Maybe...

The ransomware is being promulgated by the NORKs themselves. They asked for payment in BTC, now they want to cash out.

You never know!

Of course it may be a bit difficult to get those fake $100 bills converted, but they will still try.

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El Reg is hiring an intern. Here's the lowdown...

Herby
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"Note that we do not have an IT helpdesk"

This is probably the smartest thing that you mention. You already have a BOFH in residence, so additional ones really aren't needed.

Best of luck.

A bit too far away for me to apply, and I might not fit the proper demographic (50 years and counting being paid for computer work).

Thankfully BOFH's are not age bound.

On requirements? Does having a bronze, silver or gold badge count?

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Stand up who HASN'T been hit in the Equifax mega-hack – whoa, whoa, sit down everyone

Herby
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Scott McNealy was right.....

We should all remember the quote and treat data accordingly:

"You have zero privacy anyway. Get over it."

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Amazon crowd-sources new HQ location, Bezos tells mayors to woo him

Herby
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What if...

They gave a party and nobody came?

One wonders. Build a stadium? It seems that cities like to do this to get football (American) teams to move. Las Vegas likes to do just that.

Maybe he needs to build a city from scratch. Call it "Amazonia", and eventually it will have a million people fawning over it.

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Dude who claimed he invented email is told by judge: It's safe to say you didn't invent email

Herby
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Email...1978...Huh?

Email in one form or another has been around since the 1960's (then is was to users on the same computer). It did take a while to get from machine to machine, but there it was.

Anyone can implement and email program (I thought about at one time, but passed), and call it "EMAIL". I'm sure many have done so. Not very unique.

Invention implies "new and novel". I suspect that this chap has done neither.

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Memo to Microsoft: Keeping your promises is probably a good idea

Herby
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We don't care...

...We're Microsoft, we don't have to.

Seems this is the slogan they're working with these days.

At least the phone company and IBM did care to some degree. Maybe someone WILL get fired for buying Microsoft products. We can only hope.

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Chinese smartphone cable-maker chucks sueball at Apple

Herby
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Wait, more is coming...

Wait for USB-C connectors and their ilk. From what I understand most (not all, thankfully) cables will have some sort of chip in them to diddle pins around.

It is coming folks, just wait and see.

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US government: We can jail you indefinitely for not decrypting your data

Herby
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Can you keep a secret??

Well, so can I.

A secret is only a secret if ONE person knows it. I guess the same goes for encryption. Of course, we forget ALL the time.

I've always wondered what would happen if I had files of landscapes labeled as "suzie.jpg". Somehow I really don't want to find out.

Now where is the "Forgot password" for the encrypted file......

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Trump-hating Iranian is the new Uber CEO

Herby
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Uber...San Francisco...

...Trump bashing...

Nothing to see here, please go away.

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Boffins bust AI with corrupted training data

Herby
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maliciously trained network...

Or training in general. Please take note of the VW Diesel emissions software. It was "trained" to pass tests. Not the best, but an example of what can go wrong.

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VW engineer sent to the clink for three years for emissions-busting code

Herby
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Done all the time...

In a galaxy far far away, and a long time ago. Back when it was fashionable to benchmark compilers using specific programs (Drystone is but one example) is was found that some compilers had recognition code to detect such programs and emit a HIGHLY optimized program that would score better than the typical code emitted by the compiler. This was done to get specific sales to governments that used said benchmarks. I understand that the code involved had a more detrimental effect (health wise), but the cases are similar.

I would hope that the prosecutor would go up the food chain to find out the correct person to throw in the clink, but alas, those exact people are the ones that will have the highest priced legal assistance to (likely) get away with the crime. From appearances this guy was involved in the specification, but the orders must have come from higher up. We shall see what happens next.

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New York Police scrap 36,000 Windows smartphones

Herby
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Why does she still have that job??

The answer to this is obvious: She is a civil servant, and they have (union) jobs for life at exorbitant pay rates. Also no higher-up is willing to take the hit for hiring her in the first place.

Life goes on. So does politics.

Now all of this begs the question, can someone who is very enterprising re-purpose these "surplus" phones to be something modern (an Android port?)? You might be able to get them pretty cheaply!

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Node.js forks again – this time it's a war of words over anti-sex-pest codes of conduct

Herby
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It is called...

Sillycon Valley for a reason.

For all concerned, the new "Code of Conduct" (all inclusive if you ask me) should be:

1) Be Nice.

2) Don't be a jerk.

Enough said.

Of course BOFH's excluded, but that is another story.

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Seriously, friends. You suck at driving. Get a computer behind the wheel to save your life

Herby
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We're all in a hurry...

And the nice autonomous driving vehicles we all want rarely take this into account. Having just driven around 600 miles two days ago (coming back from the eclipse watching), I saw lots of people just doing bad things. Yes, there were all types and then you mix up trucks (aka lorries) on the road that desire to pass one another at speeds about 10 mph below passenger cars, you get frustrated. Compound that with cranky passengers that demand food/drink/rest stops NOW, and you get an interesting mix of conditions.

Autonomous driving hasn't come here yet, so we must drive ourselves around and go long distances. I challenge Elon and Company to get his nice electric vehicle from here in Sillycon Valley to greater LA all by itself. The distance is around 300 miles, and (thankfully) I can get that on a single tank of gas (petrol) in my big ugly SUV that I drive. It takes around 5 - 6 hours (traffic on I-5) but it can be done.

Yes, warning systems are nice, but educating drivers is a good start. Remember:

"Ban low performance drivers, not high performance cars"!

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Linux-loving lecturer 'lost' email, was actually confused by Outlook

Herby
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Lesson to be learned...

Nice goes a long way. You hope that the user is as nice as you are.

Unfortunately, it doesn't always go that way. I've learned that starting out "small" and then escalating is much better than starting out at the loudest level.

Patience is a virtue.

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Singapore court awards $2.9m over bad job reference

Herby
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That's one way of doing it!

"The letter requesting the reference torn into quarters and posted back."

I like this! Of course this is but one way of providing references. Look, if you are giving references, you should know what the reference is going to say. Anything else is just plain dumb.

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The future of Python: Concurrency devoured, Node.js next on menu

Herby
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I'll wait...

For python 4.

It will happen someday, and then the 2/3 mess will be behind us. Until then, I'll keep my whitespace to myself, one tab at a time.

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The cheek of it! Beach bar owner shoots nude bather in the booty

Herby
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Re: Low jeans

My sister was a principal at an elementary school where this fashion statement was in vogue. Her method of discouraging it was to say that "Looks like your diapers are a bit full there". The effect was pretty good.

Of course there is "plumbers crack" which is a whole different story.

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Dismayed by woeful AI chatbots, boffins hired real people – and went back to square one

Herby
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Simple: Artificial Intelligence...

Isn't.

They have been trying for years, and haven't gotten much. I don't hold out much hope either. Of course, given the "Intelligence" of people these days, the standard they wish to obtain is getting lower and lower as time passes.

Life goes on.

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A storage giant wants to give you 46,763...

Herby
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Possible "explanation"?

You see, the HIGHEST priced item is first on the list, and will likely do anything you want it to. The later descriptions are there to befuddle the purchaser into saying "forget it", just order me the first thing.

Of course the most expensive thing (first one) is the one with the highest margins, but who is counting.

Lots of people order things like that because they know not what they actually need, and say "Get it!". It probably leads to a bunch of WTFs along the way.

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China can't find anyone smart enough to run its whizzbang $180m 1,640ft radio telescope

Herby
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I suspect that there might be a small problem attracting people.

The home country will probably get first dibs on what goes on, and take credit for anything that happens. So:

All your base are belong to us.

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Big question of the day: Is it time to lock down .localhost?

Herby
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Silly "private" dns stuff abounds.

In a previous job, they had a control LAN for various pieces of kit. It was always intended to be a unrouted local network that was only to be used for this purpose. Then they decided to "document" it, and called it "private.lan.com" in the documentation. Not so fast. You see the national airline of Chile is called (wait for it) LAN Airlines. They have a web site "lan.com". The documentation looks pretty silly and I suspect that the name server probably gets LOTS of unwarranted requests from idiots managers who think they know better and like nice documentation.

Yes, reserving ".localhost" and ALWAYS returning "no such name" is probably a good idea. Returning anything other than that (like resolving to 127.0.0.1) is probably a really bad idea. Yes, it should be in the "hosts" file, as it always was.

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Mid-flight jumbo font smartphone text shock sparks kid abuse arrests

Herby
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Re: Do You Know The Way To San Jose?

Yes, just go down I-280, and you will make it just fine. Lots of exits from the freeway.

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Teen who texted boyfriend to kill himself gets 15 months jail

Herby
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Then I remember...

The words to a theme song for a very popular TV show in the 70's. Something about doctors and war....

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DJI drones: 'Cyber vulnerabilities' prompt blanket US Army ban

Herby
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Good argument for...

Open source if you ask me.

Not that it would prevent security problems, just make them more "hidden".

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Microsoft breaks Office 365 sign-in pages ahead of surprise update

Herby
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"Is this work or personal"

This sounds to me like the question should be:

Can we really fleece you (business), or just mildly fleece you (personal).

Sorry, I don't use such products, I prefer to be divorced from the "cloud" as much as possible.

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Largest ever losses fail to dent Tesla's bulging order book

Herby
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Lose a little on each one...

...And make it up in volume.

Sounds like the model Elon is attempting to follow. Electric cars don't make much sense when you take into account such things as battery life and subsidies. Both of these are kinda glossed over in the grand scheme of things. Battery life after enough charge/discharge cycles eventually goes to ZERO, and the replacement cost (parts and labor) is through the roof. It just doesn't make any sense. If you have a "plug-in hybrid", the worst thing you can do is plug it in, and cycle the battery to wear it out. I doubt that anyone would buy a "standard" (petrol) vehicle that would require a complete new engine after the warranty ran out.

Nice company you have there, Elon. Too bad it is doomed to fail.

p.s. I hear Twitter is sinking, you might try that.

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Linus Torvalds pens vintage 'f*cking' rant at kernel dev's 'utter BS'

Herby
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Maybe...

Linus is a BOFH in disguise?

Lacking a cattle prod, and only words to motivate, he rants on.

Sorry, I just read the BOFH episode, as I was out of computer range for the last 3 weekends.

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BOFH: Oh go on. Strap me to your Hell Desk, PFY

Herby
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Desk??

Some of the places I've worked, the best excuse for a desk was a 4x8 foot sheet of plywood supported by a couple of crates. If it was too thin, it would sag in the middle.

Wrong height? "Do you have a chain saw?" might be the answer. Of course the use of a chain saw usually wasn't directed at the desk supports, but that is another story.

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Windows Subsystem for Linux to debut in Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Herby
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Re: 33ASR/33KSR keyboards...

Well, they DID have a backslash, you needed to look for it. Most of the time it was unlabeled.

If you have a model 33 teletype (or 35 for that matter), just press your friendly shift key and strike the 'L' key and it will magically appear. Other glyphs available are:

Shift 'K' - '['

Shift 'L' - '\'

Shift 'M' - ']'

Shift 'N' - '^' (usually an 'Up arrow').

Shift 'O' - '_' (usually a 'back arrow').

Shift 'P' - '@' (this one was usually on the key).

If you got stuck with a non-parity keyboard that had 'alt mode' and not a true escape key, the proper incantation was: Control/Shift/K.

We now return from the 60's/70's to your regularly scheduled program.

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Wisconsin badgers Apple to cough up half a BEEELLION dollars for ripping off chip designs

Herby
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Just the cost of doing business.

Given how much cash Apple has, it probably isn't much. Of course, I would like that amount in my pocket, but Apple's pockets are HUGE! Mine are but a microdot by comparison.

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Virgin Media's profanity warning triggered by chief exec's name

Herby
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This is a clbuttic problem.

At one time when spell check was run, it highlighted as a spelling error the competitors program, and suggested their own as the correct way of spelling. I don't remember exactly which programs they were, but one might be Aldus pagemaker. I'm sure someone will correct me.

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Microsoft ctrl-Zs 'killing' Paint, by which we mean offering naff app through Windows Store

Herby
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Trollface

Re: Can we replace Siri

No, replace Clippy with Siri. Much more soothing.

You need to watch the episode of the _Big Bang Theory_ that discusses this.

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US vending machine firm plans employee chip implant scheme

Herby
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Note to users...

Be very sure that the escrow account for removal is updated and well funded for the "lifetime" of the insertable.

When they start putting these in newborns, I'll be very afraid!

Then again, chipping convicted felons might not be a bad idea.

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Microsoft hits new low: Threatens to axe classic Paint from Windows 10

Herby
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Taken to extreme??

They might decide to depreciate Windows itself. After all it is pretty virus prone, subject to many faults, not well liked by users, and not well maintained.

Of course some users have already done that, and use an alternative. Fruity and Penguinistas abound.

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.. ..-. / -.-- --- ..- / -.-. .- -. / .-. . .- -.. / - .... .. ... then a US Navy fondleslab just put you out of a job

Herby
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Remember: When all else fails...

Morse code will get through. Easy to send, easy to receive. How fast is a matter of practice, etc...

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'Coke dealer' called us after his stash was stolen – cops

Herby
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You won't be lying...

If you say criminals are dumb. If they were smart, they wouldn't be classified as "criminals", just businessmen.

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Cops harpoon two dark net whales in megabust: AlphaBay and Hansa

Herby
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Now if they went after the spam hawkers...

It would be a much nicer day. Maybe some has been done already, but you never know. Freezing assets sends a powerful message.

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Why can't you install Windows 10 Creators Update on your old Atom netbook? Because Intel stopped loving you

Herby
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It seems to me...

That if chipzilla doesn't want to do fixes to a chip, then they should hand over the capability to the user community so they can do the job. Of course it won't happen, because the chip has some proprietary stuff that is still used in current devices or some such legal talk (resolved to "NO").

If this keeps up, we will do CPUs as they do automobiles in Cuba. Just fix it.

I don't hold out much hope.

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The Atari retro games box is real… sort of

Herby
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So xmame for RPi

Put inside the box and call it a day. Might even work on a Pi zero.

HDMI output and Joysticks and buttons in.

Most of the work has been done to some extent.

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Broadcasters, advocacy groups and nonprofits weigh in on Microsoft's magical broadband

Herby
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Good luck.

They will need lots of it. A few years ago, some idiot "genius" thought it be nice to have internet over power lines. What a total disaster (as it should have been). Now this?

I don't hold out much hope. Somebody "owns" the spectrum, and is woe to let squatters use it.

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Electric driverless cars could make petrol and diesel motors 'socially unacceptable'

Herby
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Acceptable??

Let someone try a nice electric car and have it travel across the state of Nevada in one go. That's 400+ miles of nice comfy desert on Interstate 80.

My mom did it in four hours once (it was a while ago), but in an electric car, I don't think so in anything less than around 10 hours. A practical vehicle can do it in around 6 hours, and it DOES require a petrol/gas stop along the way. No, I don't want to stay a night in Elko!

Yes, when my mom did it, the speed limit in Nevada was "Resume speed, thank you". No longer (*SIGH*).

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Speaking in Tech: What is a Windows 10 licence worth these days?

Herby
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Manure??

True story: I was working at the "calf lab" (part of the medicine department) of a major university. As is well known, calves produce manure, and since it accumulates it needs to be gotten rid of. Rather than lab workers doing this (somewhat messy) task, someone suggested an advert in the student daily paper. After recovering from the phone ringing off the hook for "organic manure", inquirers were pointed to the corner of the corral and told that it was very "self serve". Yes, I did see a couple with long boots pitchforking waste products into a nice garbage bag.

Yes, that's what I think a Windows 10 license is worth. At my home we use Andersen windows actually.

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Ready, aim... Ignition! Valley VC bigwig ejects after conduct complaints

Herby
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Grown up?

From appearances it seems that many of these idiots never had their face slapped by someone in authority (a parent?) when doing "inappropriate" actions. If they want action that has no recourse, there ARE places in Nevada (as shown on HBO) that will accommodate said interest (for a small substantial fee). That being said, the fee in Nevada might be less than the legal hassles that might rise from such actions here in sillycon valley.

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Good news: Samsung's Tizen no longer worst code ever. Bad news: It's still pretty awful

Herby
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40 zero-days??

Looks a bit excessive if you ask me. Similarities to Swiss cheese come to mind.

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Blue Cross? Blue crass: Health insurer thought it would be a great idea to mail plans on USB sticks

Herby
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Memo to Blue Cross....

QR Code. Much cheaper, and can be printed on a letter that MIGHT have some credibility (like a letterhead, and an addressed name).

No excuses for a USB stick.

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