* Posts by Richard L

21 posts • joined 14 Mar 2008

ID fraudsters sell stolen Aus house

Richard L

To Add Insult to Injury

There is the suggestion that the victim will be liable for Capital Gains Tax on the sale from the Australian Tax Office

Aussie broadband is slower than a slow thing in a slow town

Richard L

Ahh Telstra

The phone company that makes BT customer service look hyper efficient. I once spent 3 hours being passed round different departments to resolve a billing issue, and in the process discovered they had multiple billing systems, but most departments couldn't access both.

I live in an area where there are a large number of new estates, most of the housing has been built in the last 5 years. We are stuck on ADSL if we're lucky, as Telstra decided to put in a sub-exchange, rather than a full exchange, so there is no room for the kit needed for ADSL2+.

Australia unbans the internet

Richard L
Big Brother

Adult Games Banned?

Not normally, mostly they just get classified as MA15+.

Admittedly a few aren't available or get changed, but the current system means things are generally more availale to the kids than they would otherwise be.

Conroy and his ilk are a pack of numpties, and I look forward to being able to vote against them.

BT boss brands Britain illiterate

Richard L

Another CV Story

I've recently been recruiting for a Senior Test Analyst.

An agency was very enthusiastic about a candidate and, despite my aversion to recruitment agents in general, I asked them to send me his CV.

In the first paragraph he made the claim of working with a high level of "accurancy". Word helpfully underlined this in red.

On one level this is a simple typographical error, but if I am reviewing a dozen CVs with a view to short listing three or four candidates it is enough for me to reject it. I have no reason to think that someone who takes that little care with their CV is going to do any better in a QA type role.

Pirate Party UK sinks on maiden voyage

Richard L


"How long did the Lib Dems or Green Party have to keep pugging away before they got to the position they are at now?"

Well, in the case of the Lib Dems it's arguably 226 years as they are the successors of the Whig Party which was formalised in 1784.

Johnson: ID cards will pay for themselves

Richard L

@AC 01:13 - Oh the Irony

Of an Anonymous Coward welcoming the cards and the associated database.

Care to tell us your name?

Florida woman prangs car while shaving her privates

Richard L

A Dead Ringer for...

Kurt Cobain from looking at the mugshot.

Would you leave your child alone with a cabinet minister?

Richard L


Huntley was a caretaker at *another* school.

If he had failed a check, he could still have been working in Soham, albeit not in a school, and the tragedy could still have happened.

BT slammed for 'importing' cheap Indian contractors

Richard L

Old News

It's been going on for years, and it's a complete lie that it only happens where the skills are not available onshore, as I've seen at LloydsTSB.

Just another reason why to not recommend IT as a career in the UK, given the government seems to hate IT contractors in particular.

Unauthorised Wolverine claws his way onto interwebs

Richard L
Thumb Down

Good luck on removing it from the Internet

From curiosity I had a look for the torrent when I first saw the news:

yesterday - 60,000 seeds

today - 90,450 seeds

How exactly are they going to remove it?

BTW I have not downloaded it, not interested and have been too busy catching up on ER for the wife as the local TV channel decided to halt the season after the first episode.

Students Union reps vote to ban cheap booze for students

Richard L

President of NUS?

Isn't this a training ground for labour MPs.

From when I was at uni in the mid nineties the national presidents were Stephen Twigg, Lorna Fitzsimmons, and Derek Trainer - all of whom were exemplary labour MPs.

Apologies for the vulgar abuse at the end of the previous sentence.

Concerted Linux-netbook effort needed to beat Microsoft

Richard L


"Linux will not dominate in the netbooks because people are stupid and/or lazy"

Possibly, or because MS has woken up and allowed XP to be licenced.

My wife has an Acer netbook that shipped with XP. She was delighted as she hates Vista with a vengance after seeing it slow down another laptop and forcing her to do things differently. She doesn't give a damn about Linux.

She didn't *need* XP, arguably she didn't *need* a netbook, but it was she *wanted*.

She only uses it for some office documents, web surfing, music, and some mild photo editing.

All of this could be done under Linux, but really, why bother.

If it had been me, I'd have gone for a Linux option as I'd have enjoyed playing with a new O/S, but it was her computer.

Why is it stupid or lazy to pick the option that meets the users requirements?

Photography rights: Snappers to descend on Scotland Yard

Richard L
Black Helicopters

So I Can't Ask my Family

"The new law makes it an offence to elicit or attempt to elicit information about an individual who is or has been a member of Her Majesty’s forces, a member of any of the intelligence services or a constable, "which is of a kind likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism, or publishes or communicates any such information"."

WTF, so potentially asking either my dad (former copper) or my 92 year old grandfather (former WW2 squaddie) where there planning to go on his holidays is illegal?

Or asking anybody over the age of 16 about "something of a kind likely to be useful to a terrorist" ,without checking whether they'd been in the forces or police, is fraught with the danger of being charged.

Stupid stupid stupid

Next Windows name unveiled: Windows 7

Richard L

Aspirations for Windows Vista?

Just so we are all clear, what may those be?

Home Office lost CDs on 3,000 workers

Richard L

Net Firms Decide if They're Legal Themselves

From the BBC

"In her questions Baroness Miller has asked about the issues surrounding Phorm and the technology it employs.

In one question she asked if the government has issued advice to net service firms about getting consent for web-watching ad systems or what needs to be done to let people know their web habits could be monitored.

In response the government said it was up to net firms to decide if a service they provide was within the law. "

... and if it isn't, the legal authorities will do sweet F.A.

Phorm papers reveal BT's backwards approach to wiretap law

Richard L

Net Firms Decide If They Are Legal

From the BBC

"In her questions Baroness Miller has asked about the issues surrounding Phorm and the technology it employs.

In one question she asked if the government has issued advice to net service firms about getting consent for web-watching ad systems or what needs to be done to let people know their web habits could be monitored.

In response the government said it was up to net firms to decide if a service they provide was within the law. "

... and if they're not, the authorities will do sweet F.A.

Microsoft slams 'sensationalist' Vista analysis

Richard L
IT Angle

What is the Business Benefit?

Having worked in a major UK bank when they replaced NT4 on the desktop with XP only about 3 years ago, the key question is what is the business benefit for corporates to move to Vista?

You are talking about

- licence costs

- hardware costs

- testing of existing core applications

- rework/replacement of those apps that don't work

- revision of support

- project management to upgrade/replace 10,000s of desktops and 1,000 of laptops on hundreds of sites

- business disruption

And you end up not being able to do anything (and arguably less) than you could before.

Why spend the money? Especially when MSFT will continue to support old OS for years after they are withdrawn from the market (we had NT4 support out to 2008 at least, for a suitable consideration).

Linspire CEO defends Xandros buy-out

Richard L

@Damien Jorgensen

"The OEM deals and the channel add value to the consumer. It prevents people taking home crap"


UK most popular destination for 419 scams

Richard L
Thumb Down

Marketing Fluff

What the hell did they do?

What is surfiing unprotected? Why should it lead to spam? AFAIK your email address is not sent from your browser to any page asking for it.

What browser(s) did they use? Mosaic 1.0, IE 3.0, Firefox 3.0?

The BBC has lousy churnalism on this as well, but I expected El Reg to do better. The story as it stands makes no sense.

HSBC pops thousands of customer details in the post

Richard L


Having worked for a few banks (not HSBC), it probably comes down to someone just putting the disk in an envelope - most staff don't usually make use of couriers themselves and the senior manager's PA who normally books them was off sick, so they just put it in the 'Out Mail' tray, or if they were feeling particularly dilligent, dropped it off at the Post Office but didn't send it 'Registered' as it'd be too much hassle to get the expenses reimbursed.

Doesn't excuse why it was sent through the mail, but I can fully understand how.

MPs get £2k home cinema on taxpayers

Richard L
Paris Hilton

Working Away From Home?

Let's see, the last time I was working away from home as an IT Consultant I stayed in a flat rented by my employer, I think I received £7.50/day meals allowance (no other expenses allowed), and the television I managed to procure for my room was free through abusing Asda's 'no questions' asked returns policy. So the notional advantage to me was

£7.5*4= £30 week (not paid for days that I ended up at home)

£30*48= £1440/year (excluding holiday)

Assuming taxed at 22% and NI at 10% (not all cons are anywhere near the top bracker) = £2118 pre-tax income to get this if it came out of taxable income.

Travel was by train from London to Newcastle as it was £30 cheaper than flying from Gatwick (my employer only paid me for the time at work, and of course I could do 40 hours between Monday lunchtime and Friday afternoon) - the extra 6 hours travel was a *gift* by me to my employer.

Compare to MPs

£23,000 p.a .to *buy* second home

£23,000 p.a. to furnish it

Pre-tax income for a normal mortal to get this benefit:

£46,000/0.59 = £77,966

Monthly meals allowance (unreceipted) £400.

Pre-tax income for a normal mortal to get this benefit:


So that's a notional £86,101 in income that can be substituted for by expenses - without having to prove that they were incurred in the course of business, and they keep the stuff if they lose their jobs.

Another employer, I have received a phone call from the outsourced expense department in Mumbai challenging a receipted £5.25 for breakfast as company policy was £5 or 'hotel breakfast price' - I was on site doing a major system upgrade at 5am before the hotel started serving, so I lost the 25p.

I haven't gone into the benefit of employing their own family members either, and some people think this is ok as the poor darlings are underpaid. Given the voting record of my last MP before I buggered off overseas, the only work he did was to ask the government whip how to vote.

Paris, because they obviously aspire to her level of budgetary control

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