* Posts by C. P. Cosgrove

175 posts • joined 28 May 2008

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Gates, Woz, and the last 2,000 years of computing

C. P. Cosgrove

I know how he feels . . .

I know exactly how Gavin Clarke feels.

Not long after we were married - 35 years ago - my wife and I found ourselves in the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu. To my amazement, we went round a corner and I found myself face to face with Mk 1 Scammell Scarab ( a light three-wheeled articulated tractor unit ) . In my surprise, I blurted "I learnt to drive artics on one of them."

To which my beloved replied "Darling, what's it like to know you learnt to drive on a museum piece ?"

I don't go back as far on computers as a Commodore 64 though.

Chris Cosgrove

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PARIS concocts commemorative cocktail

C. P. Cosgrove
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Admiration

I canot think of a name to outdo those above, but my admiration for the sheer dedication to their task of the design, construction and launch crews as well as the selfless application of those in a support role, knows no bounds.

The PARIS project has amazed me from the very first intimation to this crowning effort.

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LOST Vulture One PARIS spaceplane FOUND!!!

C. P. Cosgrove
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Congratulations

Brilliant !

And a happy ending !

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PARIS launch go for 23 Oct

C. P. Cosgrove
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Good luck !

I will - unhappily - be more or less next door for the lauch, well in Northern France. The least I will be able to do is raise a sympathetic glass of some liquid with a reddish hue in support.

It has been a fascinating and hilarious saga : with heroes, challenges, setbacks, rising to a triumphal conclusion. Well, we all hope so.

Best of luck for the maiden flight of this possible shuttle replacement.

Chris Cosgrove

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World's first pedal-powered ornithopter takes flight in Canada

C. P. Cosgrove
Happy

I don't know . . .

I don't know if it was flying or gliding, and it's not an argument I want to get into, BUT - it looks gorgeous, and it is a really fine bit of light weight engineering.

I used to make balsa wood flying models - but a 105 feet ( oops, sorry, 32 metre ) wingspan ? That was a little ( 30 metres ) beyond my wildest ambitions !

Chris Cosgrove

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VW to eliminate worst road hazard: drivers

C. P. Cosgrove
Go

Infrastructure

While I do not doubt for one minute the feasability of Burkhard Huhnke's remarks, one area he appears to have glossed over is the requirement for some sort of infrastructure so that his cars know where the road is, and agreement on standards so that only one variety of infrastructure is required.

I agree fully with his comments about under- and over- challenging situations. I used to drive trucks around Europe, and, a common response when told what my occupation was ' Oh, that must be exciting !' . No, getting exciting usually meant it was getting dangerous, and it is not a good idea getting dangerous with 40 tons at 90 KPH ! It's an awful lot of energy. But it could be bloody boring.

Chris Cosgrove

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Pakistan set to ban more web blasphemy

C. P. Cosgrove

I live in hope

There hs always been a conflict in Islamic thinking between one of the central tenets of the religion 'There is no God but Allah, and Muhammed is his prophet' , and the clasical Islamic teaching that those of the Jewish and Christian faiths are 'Followers of the Book' and are to be treated at least sympathetically.

However, taking the Michael out of some one else's religious beliefs is not the way to go. There should be room for open discussion, but one can sympathise with the Pakistani respose to the Facebook campaign.

However, from what I have seen and heard, tolerance for those of different faiths, or no faith, is thin on the ground in the average Mosque.

Chris Cosgrove

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My hospital HAL - Google man moots syringe that says no

C. P. Cosgrove

No O/Ds

While not entirely relevant to the article being commented on, we do not need 'smart' syringes to prevent - I presume The Silver Fox meant accidental - O/Ds, we merely need legalisation of all drug use, and consequent quality control of the various drugs.

Living in Central Scotland, death by accidental O/D is not unknown to me, but it is almost always because somebody has released heroin onto the street of an unexpected strength. With proper quality control, this risk vanishes and therefore we don't need the attached privacy risks of 'smart' syringes.

Chris Cosgrove

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Scots slam Germans for 'tight-arsed' slur

C. P. Cosgrove

Brits ?

Contrary to the impression given in the footnote, the last time I looked, we Scots were Brits. Good laugh though

Chris Cosgrove

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Londoners' votes put at risk by Boris' bigwig

C. P. Cosgrove
FAIL

DRS and Scottish election

" DRS supplied the machines that were at the centre of the disastrous 2007 Scottish election "

I have no feeling one way or the other for DRS, but to be fair to DRS, it wasn't primarily the machines that were at fault, but a truly awfully designed ballot paper.

I voted in that election, and I am reasonably sure in retrospect that one of my two ballot papers was incorrectly completed - and I like to think it wasn't due to lack of intelligence or, at the age of 62 at the time, of inexperience of voting.

You would have to have seen the ballot papers to have believed them !

Chris Cosgrove

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Home Office foot-dragging exposes ACPO to criticism

C. P. Cosgrove

Theory and practice

I know I am a simplistic idiot, but I thought the theory was that Parliament made the law, the police and prosecution services decided if there was a prima facie case that the law had been broken, and the courts made the decision whether or not the law had been broken.

In that case, there is a role for ACPO. It is to ensure standards of best practice and to oversee liasion between forces.

Parliament / Government is not even supposed to advise on interpretation of the law - that is for the courts. Of course, in a perfect world, the laws coming down from Parliament would be clear, concise and readily understandable.

This is not a perfect world.

Chris Cosgrove

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Police wrong to spy on peace campaigner

C. P. Cosgrove

Chris Cosgrove

Further to the comment by Hollerith, as I understand it, it is the right - even duty - of shareholders to attend AGMs, especially if they wish to lawfully bring about a change of policy by the management.

However, following considerable discussion here in 'The Register' and elsewhere, you cannot object to the police taking photographs in a public space - so long as they are for their private enjoyment ! You cannot have your cake and eat it.

Of course, the minute they start putting these images on a database you raise very real concerns about invasion of privacy and data protection. But the question that really intrigues me here is : How many shareholders, apart from Andrew Wood, were questioned by the police after the AGM ended ?

Chris Cosgrove

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Home Office: IPS to hang onto snaps of fingerprints

C. P. Cosgrove

Chris Cosgrove

If adding fingerprints to passports is a Schengen Group requirement, then obviously the British Government is planning on joining the Schengen Group in the near future.

In that case, we won't need passports to move around Europe, and therefore we won't need an Identity and Passport Service will we ?

Chris Cosgrove

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Hacked flight sim site in catastrophic crash and burn

C. P. Cosgrove

Chris Cosgrove

As a moderately enthusistic flight simmer - more enthusiasm than skill - this is a real shame, but what's the motive ? There isn't a lot of profit in knocking off a hobbyist's site. A lot of annoyance, yes; the probable loss of a great deal of mental effort and ingenuity by the members of the community, yes; but no money.

It would seem something of an over reaction to harsh words from the Forum moderators. Was this just a dummy run before attacking a target with more profit potential ?

Chris Cosgrove

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Chinese officials obliged to smoke 4.6m snouts

C. P. Cosgrove

Chris Cosgrove

I think a factor of at least 1000 has fallen off this story - according to a very quick calculation, 230,000 packets of 20 comes to only about 60 cases, or rougly one pallet.

I cannot see one pallet of cigarettes making a significant difference to any tax regime !

Chris Cosgrove

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eCard scammer avoids jail

C. P. Cosgrove
Stop

Chris Cosgrove

He must have passed his scripts on before he was nailed - I got a phishing e-mail allegedly from Hallmark about 1 month ago. Oh well.

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Fraudsters cream opposition in cybercrime wars

C. P. Cosgrove

23% fall victim

I know someone once said that you will never go broke over-estimating the stupidity of the public, but 23% of the population have, or have a close family connection, who has fallen VICTIM to a phishing scam or similar ?

Or do they mean that 23% of the population have received phishing e-mails etc. ?

In view of the comment about ID cards in the article, someone had better make this distinction clear rapidly.

I used to be a ( legitimate ) salesman - I wish i could have found this 23% of the population !

Chris Cosgrove

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Mozilla comes out in support of Brussels IE on Windows findings

C. P. Cosgrove

IE is a symptom

IE is only a symptom, not the problem. The US Federal Judge who ordered that the Windows operating system should be split off from commercial Microsoft - unhappily overturned on appeal - was right.

The problem is that when a commercial product is as pervasive and as difficult to avoid as Windows is, then it is not surprising that the producers take advantaage of their near monopoly position.

Chris Cosgrove

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Study clears cannabis of schizophrenia rap

C. P. Cosgrove
Dead Vulture

Chris Cosgrove

An interesting article, but I fear Tim Worstall misses the point slightly. I will put my hands up and admit I use caffeine, nicotine and alchohol - the last at least in reasonable moderation - but I have the advantage here in that these are 'legal' substances and therefore subject to public quality control. This means that when I pour myself a whisky, I am reasonably certain that it contains ethyl and not methyl alchohol.

It is entirely reasonable for the state to minimise our opportunities to harm others, but self harm is individual responsibility.

I have argued for some years that the biggest part of the 'Drug Problem' is the social cost of the crime involved in paying for people's habits and the use of drug money in financing other crimes and indeed terrorism.

A very strong case can be made for the legalisation of all drugs : A reduction in the street price; the enforcement of quality control standards; a reduction in the funding of other crime and terrorism; even a reduction in the death rate among heroin users - often due to over-strength heroin being supplied. Give me another five minutes and I will think of others.

This is a subject I feel strongly about - I have a nephew who has done time for heroin related manslaughter, and another relative who has done time for dealing. My nephew might still be a heroin addict, but it is much less likely he would have finished up in jail if every one involved had been able to go into their corner store, or corner Boots, for their fixes, and the lad whose death he was involved in would probably still be alive.

The government could even sell drug legalisation as part of 'The War on Terror' - after all, doesn't most of the World's heroin come from Afghanistan ?

The tombstone because I don't live in hope on this subject.

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Microsoft retires Windows 3.11 on 18th birthday

C. P. Cosgrove
Unhappy

Chris Cosgrove

I am not alone ! There are others out there with fond memories of Windows 3.11 and DOS 6.20. Was this Microsoft's last stable operating system ?

If anyone out there still has a flopppy disc drive, I think I have an installation copy of 3.11 in the back of the cupboard somewhere - all 22 floppy discs ( was it 22 ? ). Any offers ?

Alas, poor 3.11, I knew him well.

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Home Office preps fudgetastic ISP data rules

C. P. Cosgrove
Linux

I'm a terrorist - oops, wrong, paranoid

Which ISPs are going to be exempted from observing this 'National' law ? Tell me, and I will switch my account.

The penguin, because it's the nearest thing to ducking for cover.

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Did the width move for you, darling?

C. P. Cosgrove
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Chris Cosgrove

Do try and keep this a secret, but I quite like the new lay-out. It did come as a bit of a surprise, but I got over it quite quickly.

Keeping leads to what may be considered 'more important' stories at the top of the page is a good idea, especially for dumb dumbs like me who haven't quite sorted the art of searching your archives.

I think you do need to consider your font - apart from giving a rather 'dense' impression it could be made more eye-friendly. It may be that all it needs is an extra point or two between the lines to make it easier on the eye.

On balance, in favour.

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The war on photographers - you're all al Qaeda suspects now

C. P. Cosgrove

At last - I'm a terrorist !

Once upon a few years ago, I was the Secretary of the local camera club, and the whole membership went to a certain refinery in a Northern Country to take photos by night for a Club competition. Since it's the only refinery in a certain Northern Country, I am reasonably certain it's the same one as in the comment above !

Not only does this make me a terrorist, but another 30 or so people of generally harmless and inoffensive natures.

PS I still have the negatives, and am open to offer I this was a few years ago ) !

Chris Cosgrove

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Mobile fingerprinting heads to another 10 police forces

C. P. Cosgrove

Biometrics and the ID database

Now I begin to see a reason for the central ID database behind the proposed ID card scheme. Once we have your biometrics on file, whether you are guilty of anything or not, we can check your fingerprints to see if you are telling the truth !

Chris Cosgrove

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UK to outlaw cartoons of child sexual abuse

C. P. Cosgrove
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Info Links on effects of pornographt

Pat at 1459 asked for any info links on this subject.

Having been advised in an earlier post not to Google 'Lolicon' I promptly did, not fully understanding the term, and took a look at the Wikipedia entry. Among many other references to be found under 'Notes', he may find this useful :

"Milton Diamond and Ayako Uchiyama (1999). "Pornography, Rape and Sex Crimes in Japan". International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 22 (1): 1–22. Retrieved on 2008-01-06."

Chris Cosgrove

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