* Posts by Herby

2653 posts • joined 14 Dec 2007

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

Herby
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Noise complaints...

You get these even if the plane is flying or not. This was proven on the days the flights were canceled for various reasons. The "concerned public" called in anyway to complain.

Why fly? Well, on August 21st, a quick plane across the USA might be able to enjoy the eclipse for its entire length! Maybe they should get the SR-71 out of mothballs just to do that flight. Of course another reason to fly quickly is to make up the time waiting in lines and security theatre checkpoints we must all endure nowdays.

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US engineer in the clink for wrecking ex-bosses' smart meter radio masts with Pink Floyd lyrics

Herby
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Don't do the crime...

If you can't do the time...

Lesson to be learned here, even if it was a small (relatively speaking) interval.

Of course, no humans were actually harmed in this picture.

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Researchers blind autonomous cars by tricking LIDAR

Herby
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Wile E. Coyote Lives.

Got to have that tunnel painted on the side of a cliff!

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Linus Torvalds slams 'pure garbage' from 'clowns' at grsecurity

Herby
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Hornets nest??

From the looks of the comments, it appears that nothing stirs up a hornets nest (and downvotes) like:

1) Politics

2) Religion

3) Linus Torvalds

4) Linux Kernel.

From the looks of it, we might want to calm down.

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AES-256 keys sniffed in seconds using €200 of kit a few inches away

Herby
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Meanwhile...

Amazon reports that a multitude of software defined radios have been ordered by someone near Ft. Meade VA, along with antennas with sensitive amplifiers.

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US Secretary of State: I will work with Russia on cyber security issues

Herby
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Diplomacy....

...is the art of saying "nice doggy" to a rabid dog, while you reach for the 2x4 and hold it behind your back.

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Heaps of Windows 10 internal builds, private source code leak online

Herby
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Maybe they will fix the bad parts

So, the users (not me, thankfully), will get a better performing OS. We can only hope, but I won't hold my breath.

Of course the conspiracy theorists will have all sorts of explanations on how this was done, probably involving all sorts of three letter agencies (from many countries) and Microsoft itself.

Prometheus modem for sale (a reference that goes back a ways).

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Amazon squares up to Walmart over boycott calls: Talk sh!t, get hit

Herby
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Re: Yeah, well

Not using a "competitors" product if you are a client of theirs is only PR on your part. I suspect that the edict in your case was not the client's (Coke's) request, but rather an internal decision.

It is kinda like going to work for Ford, and driving up in a Chevy. You won't win friends, or in political speak, it is "bad optics". I suspect that you won't get fired, but you might be harassed a bit.

Life goes on.

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Florida Man to be fined $1.25 per robocall... all 96 million of them

Herby
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Where do the fines go?

Probably to some FCC enforcement desk jockey. They should of course go to those who were called. Automatic credit on their phone bill. NO LAWYERS involved, please!

Look, I can dream.

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BOFH: Putting the commitment into committee

Herby
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Re: Yes, I used lynx for this

Yes, 80x24 terminals. Just remember that there are 80 columns on a punch card. That is the reason for the number of columns.

There was a treatise about the width of vehicles and the like, culminating with the width of a SRB for the space shuttle.

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Herby
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Re: Definition ...

Yes, collective nouns are interesting. For a bunch of crows it is a "murder" of crows.

Who knew!

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Breaking news, literally: Newspaper's quakebot rumbled for fake story

Herby
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To err is human...

...to really foul things up you need a computer.

Point proven!

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Walmart tells developers to stay away from AWS

Herby
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Business opportunity??

Let's see... ACME Cloud services. Setup a server in my closet, and go from there. Even better if you conveniently "co-locate" on your clients premisses (as step two). What a way to go. Allow self administration as well. What a deal.

Just remember: "Cloud" means "Somebody else's computer that you have no control over".

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Darkness to fall over North America from a total solar eclipse

Herby
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You should have booked your stay by now...

And hopefully sometime last year. Most lodging facilities are double (at least) price in the path of totality, and by now are all reserved.

Me? Thankfully my sister has a beach house on the Oregon coast, right in the path. I'll be there. Last time (1979) her house on the Columbia River basin was right in line as well. I must have good karma.

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'OK, everyone. Stop typing, this software is DONE,' said no one ever

Herby
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Dependencies...

While YOU may classify a chunk of software done, it may depend upon other software that is evolving and isn't "done". This automatically makes YOUR software NOT done as well. Sorry, this is a simple fact of life.

One can only hope that what you depend upon makes compatible changes which have little impact on your "done" software.

I suppose the only thing that is "done" is something that can't be altered in any meaningful way. The micro that controls my microwave oven comes to mind. Now we have "connected appliances" and again these are never "done", and we will all pay the price.

No, I don't need a connected refrigerator with a silly display. I need a box that keeps my soda & beer anti-warm.

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Herby
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Re: When was the last update for...

You forgot the commands 'true' and 'false'. Look at their size, and think on how they could be optimized. You need to ask does this REALLY need both help text and version displays.

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Stack Clash flaws blow local root holes in loads of top Linux programs

Herby
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sudont

Enough said.

If you need root access for some reason, you should know the root password and use su. If you don't know how then who are you anyway, and get off. Sudo is a pretty big crutch, and is used WAY to frequently. Sadly I have to use it as well, but that is a topic for another rant.

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Intel: Joule's burned, Edison switched off, and Galileo – Galileo is no more

Herby
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Dust??

Rewind the clock to around 1980 or so. If IBM had not chosen Intel, they might as well be dust now. Probably making dram chips or rom's. Of course IBM did chose Intel (they had good reason to, they owned part of it), and history was written.

The x86 instruction set is not the best in the world, and has gone through many band-aids to get it where it is now. I still wonder why it is still being used. Only because of good compilers and the like and big increases in clock speed does it make any sense. Then again, what Intel gives in speed improvements, Microsoft takes away in bloated software.

Life goes on.

Me? I still like the 68k processors, but that's another story.

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

Herby
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Have map...

Will Travel. Email Herby, Sillycon Valley.

Yes, I do know the way to San Jose. It is south on I280, or US101. Four lanes each. Wonderfully depicted on the nice AAA (it is called AA in the UK) maps which have great detail.

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Virtual reality audiences stare straight ahead 75% of the time

Herby
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Operative word in title...

Is stare. Most people when doing these things are mindlessly looking straight ahead (as mentioned), but lack the ability to look elsewhere. Yes, you have good stuff in your main field of view, but the most sensitive parts of your eye for motion and light are at the edges. We evolved that way, as the things at the edges were out to get us, and having sensitive eyes there helped us get away.

Of course, what most of us are doing now is (wait for it) staring at the screen in front of us.

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Software dev bombshell: Programmers who use spaces earn MORE than those who use tabs

Herby
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Re: Of course there's a right answer!

Anyone who knows about keypunches KNOWS that yes there is a TAB key on an 029, and it is called the SKIP key. You set the columns you want to skip to on the drum card as god intended (you did take that class didn't you). Thankfully you could select on an 029 which settings you could use (PROG 1 and PROG 2) so the first was Fortran, the second was your Assembler (which had different tabs fields than the Fortran program did. When you used assembler, the skip positions were columns 10, 19, 37 as the proper gods determined. This allowed for 8 character labels.

Of course when you went to terminals (an ASR33 for sure), the software set things to have a tab every 8th column, so you used to after you typed your statement number in Fortran. Then tabs were ALWAYS set to 8 characters, and if you have a reasonable editor, it put them in for you even if you pounded on the space bar.

Of course when I was in typing class, the standard indent for paragraphs was 5 spaces, but that was a LONG time ago. Now it is 1/2 inch, which is the same thing on 10 cpi fix spaced fonts.

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What can you buy with 12 bucks? Avocado on toast? A slice of Tintri?

Herby
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This looks like a company that has the slogan...

Lose a little on each one, and make it up in volume.

And if you look at the charts, that is exactly what they are doing.

Me? I don't like avocados. Ever. Green slime!

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BOFH: Halon is not a rad new vape flavour

Herby
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Mercedes or Boxes?

For the sales droid and the denim guy it probably wasn't a difficult choice. You see the Mercedes was probably the sales droid's own and of course he didn't want to scratch it.

As for the sales tactic, it is all to familiar. Really "cheap" up front, but the implementation and recurring costs are the ones that really kill you (hopefully the sales droid).

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Yeah, if you could just stop writing those Y2K compliance reports, that would be great

Herby
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A Y2.1k problem...

Is also that the year 2100 is NOT a leap year. That is going to make lots of things break. Microsoft had to do lots of things to make/unmake/make the year 1900 a leap year.

The simple solution to the Y2038 problem is to use unsigned as time_t. Then it is officially not my problem

Of course, governments are governments and they will ALWAYS screw up things.

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You'll soon be buying bulgur wheat salad* from Amazon, after it swallowed Whole Foods

Herby
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I (sometimes) use Miss Piggy's guide to life...

You see one must have a cookbook, and kitchen appliances. In Miss Piggy's world she has them as well:

Cookbook: That's the yellow pages.

Appliances: The phone.

Can you say take out? I'm sure you can.

Sorry that this is a bit dated, Miss Piggy's guide to life was back in the 80's, but in many ways still applies.

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Look who's joined the anti-encryption posse: Germany, come on down

Herby
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New forms of "encryption" introduced EVERY DAY

So, good luck with that.

Any "back door" encryption really isn't, so why bother. False sense of security. The bad guys will assume that you are reading the mail, and work something else out. As I said, good luck.

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Sorry to burst your bubble, but Microsoft's 'Ms Pac-Man beating AI' is more Automatic Idiot

Herby
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Rogue vs. Rogue-a-matic

This has been done. Old news. Next problem?

I haven't played either games though. Seems kinda silly.

Then again, I did play a version of Spacewar in the 70's at the Stanford Student Union, that was a bit interesting. After a while you run out of quarters.

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Speaking in Tech: Googlers don't like googling. It's a fool's gerund*

Herby
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The halloween inspection...

Was to remove those VERY tasty Rum-ball candies that were given out.

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IBM will soon become sole gatekeepers to the realm of tape – report

Herby
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We've come a long way...

From 10.5 inch reels of tape that stored 24Mbytes at 800 bpi.

Then again, it did have a certain romance to it as you threaded the drive (the ones I used had the source reel on the left side!).

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Uncle Sam █████████ cloud so much, AWS █████████ it another kinda-secret data center

Herby
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Joke

The exact location will not be released, for security reasons.

So we wait until Google Earth picks it up. Wait for the blur.

Then again, probably not much of a joke...

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Voyager 1 passes another milestone: It's now 138AU from home

Herby
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Re: Middle Age

a) ruggedized for space

b) uses LEADED solder [no tin whiskers]

c) NUCLEAR powered

d) Doesn't run millions of lines of code

e) Written by real programmers

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Farewell, slumping 40Gbps Ethernet, we hardly knew ye

Herby
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To keep things in perspective...

The bits at 100Gbps are only around 3mm apart from each other if lined up in a line. Think of how many are in a simple 10 meter cable waiting to come out the other end.

Boggles the mind.

Now you need the processing power to do something with those bits as they spill out all over the floor into a bit bucket.

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Discredit a journo? Easy, that'll be $55k. Fix an election? Oh, I can do that for just $400k

Herby
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Happy

Whatever happened to...

ElReg's price list. I couldn't find it. Maybe someone has "ethics"? Anyway, from what I remember, the prices were cheaper than those mentioned in the article.

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AWS launches celebrity-spotting-as-a-service: What a time to be alive

Herby
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Will it return...

...not found for those "celebrities" that have fallen out of favor, or who really shouldn't be "celebrities" in the first place. Maybe that is why it gave the wrong name.

Maybe AWS has an alternative motive in the first place.

Of course the real reason things like this exist is to allow us "normal" people to know just who they look like that is "famous". Yeah, that's the ticket.

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Mac ransomware author is giving away malicious code to script kiddies

Herby
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New acronym... CCaaS

Cyber Crime as a Service.

Available here just distribute for me and get paid. Unlimited earning potential. Work from home. Suckers born every minute.

Oh, and to keep up with current trends... IRS coming soon to knock on your door, and remote fix available. Just pay here.

Will it never end? I suspect not if money is on the table.

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Move over, Stuxnet: Industroyer malware linked to Kiev blackouts

Herby
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Maybe we should look at...

Siemens for a cure. It seems that the attacks look at this company for the vector to do "things bad".

Of course those wearing the tin hats might say that they are part of the conspiracy, and the list goes on...

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Uber board: We accept all recommendations. Any execs left to carry them out?

Herby
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Downward spiral...

...is what it looks to me.

Someone made an observation that in reality, you can't make even "minimum wage" (about $10/hr unless higher) driving for UBER. That takes into account cost of gas petrol and other expenses. Sorry, I don't have the source, but considering that Uber takes around 25% of the fare, it might be right.

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Swedish school pumps up volume to ease toilet trauma

Herby
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One thing for sure....

Bathroom stories bring out the best in ElReg commenters. I've even learned something (what is a "flimsy"). Life is full of surprises.

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Herby
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Re: Number 5?

Look, we here in IT land use binary, so number 10 is completely logical.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled comment section.....

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DXC Technology puts reluctant office movers on naughty step

Herby
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Picture is nice as well.

I don't know much about relocation (we have cars in Sillycon Valley), but the picture of a Basset Hound (aka Low-Rider Dog) is wonderful. It reminds me of my youth when we had two of them at home. They were nice (as pictured) tri-color Bassets, and some of the first on the west coast. My mom & dad were friends of the TV show "The Peoples Choice" which had Clio as the dog who had thoughts about the goings on.

That was MANY moons ago, but still fond memories.

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Live blog: Fired FBI boss spills the beans to US Senate committee

Herby
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Summary is great...

Even in reverse order, the summary by ElReg is wonderful. I can go through a couple of hours in less than 15 minutes of scrolling and get what is going on. Saves me LOTS of time that would otherwise be wasted listening/watching to blowhard politicians.

Great work ElReg!

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Boffins get routers spilling secrets through their LEDs

Herby
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All of this gives new meaning to:

"Relaxen und watchen das blinkenlichten"

See: this.

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Going to Mars may give you cancer, warns doc

Herby
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Duh...

Risks are risks, and we all deal with them. We must remember one thing:

"Life is a terminal disease"

And go about our business. If the risk went from 1% to 50% I might be concerned. Of course, if the risk doubled, it might spur the cure hunters to fine one. Positive outcomes all around.

Now after you have digested the above, one must remember:

"What is life, but to live it!"

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HPE's cloud server wasting away on low calorie Microsoft sales

Herby
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"Low Cost" and "Data Center"

Not a good combination. In the grand scheme of things, the cost of a data center appliance is the least of your worries. If you are getting server boxen in quantity the operating cost and software licensing will be costlier in the long run.

Data center items (see article on BA's fiasco) should be pretty "bullet proof" and reliable. This just isn't compatible with "low cost". As the saying goes: good, fast, cheap; pick two!

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At the feet of the Great Monad, or, How the functional programming craze plays out

Herby
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Sometimes you need to be humble.

And a humble way of programming is to use an ASR33 teletype as your I/O device while you

code everything all up.

All in all a humbling experience.

Of course, the alternative before that was a keypunch and cards with a turn around time of over an hour, but I digress.

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WannaCrypt: Pwnage is a fact of life but cleanup could and should be way easier

Herby
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Malware proliferates because...

...it makes money. Same as SPAM emails. While Microsoft could make the locks better, and users could use proper protection, the real task at hand is to make malware exceedingly costly for the perpetrators. The only way to do this is for a government to go after them. The cost of the WannaCry thing was quite high, but from the looks of it, no government is going after the bad guys.

Of course, if executables were cryptographically signed and we could trust the signing, it might go a long way in helping out.

Unfortunately in the end, most users (I suspect present company excepted) are ill-prepared for the modern threats a computer faces, and will do stupid things given half a chance. I wish them luck.

Life goes on.

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I'll take the sandtrooper in white: Meet the rebel scum making Star Wars armour sets for a living

Herby
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It must be me...

But when I see these props, I have the sound track running in the back of my mind.

It must some sort of associative memory.

No, I wouldn't pay for a silly mask.

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North Korea clones Facebook, forgot to change default creds

Herby
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If you like North Korea...

I understand they have this wonderful large hotel that they would like to sell to you. Brand new, never been used.

Probably complete with speakers in every room ready for "hole in one" Kim ready to indoctrinate you on a daily basis.

Oh, one last thing. You might have to live there, and nobody stays there either, as having a "disposable income" really is frowned upon.

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El Reg straps on the Huawei Watch 2

Herby
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On watches...

Anything more than about $50.00 is jewelry. Those that spend more are just to have show-off bling on their wrists.

Me: My watch (of around 20 years) is one my VERY-ex girlfriend gave me. Replaced the battery many times, and have a nice twist-o-flex watchband. Served me well, and I don't need much more. Yes, watches have a LONG lifetime, something many "smart watch" people haven't figured out.

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The revolution will not be televised: How Lucas modernised audio in film

Herby
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Audio? Many mixes are "lazy"!

Many of the modern cinema audio mixes are done by lazy sound "designers". There is this silly 5.1 sound system that puts all the dialog in a single channel in the front, and rarely pans it anywhere else. Sure the "surround" stuff is nice, but only for blasting effects of car crashes and the like. One time (many moons ago) I watched a home video version (I believe it was) The Matrix. The dialog was AWFUL. There were many times when it got muddied with the LOUD effects.

Yes, the backing track for movies IS important, but (if anyone is listening) it is a background, not what the audience primarily listens to. Get real on effects as well. Loud doesn't make it better, sometimes being subtle it the way to go.

Of course the opening of Star Wars is great. I remember watching it on U-matic tape before it came to the video stores. I got stereo speakers there as well.

As for 4-channel audio. Most of the time it is terrible. If you have listened to good 4-channel audio, it can be VERY good. I could go further, but that would involve around 45+ years of history on the subject.

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