* Posts by Geoff Campbell

1518 posts • joined 13 Jun 2008

Amazon staffers protest giant's 'support of the surveillance state'

Geoff Campbell

Re: Hmmmmm @JohnFen

You missed off the "(or some analogue thereof)" from the bit you quoted, which says what you tried to correct me on, in four words rather than four paragraphs.

Until a principle has cost you something important, it's just an opinion, and everyone has a shedload of those puppies.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: Hmmmmm

You don't feel strongly enough about it to post under your own name, I note :-)

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Hmmmmm

"We refuse to do <list of stuff>!"

"...can we have our pay now, please?"

Remember, a principle is not a principle until it has cost you money (or some reasonable analogue thereof). You don't want to work on strategic projects that your employer has identified? Leave. Make the world a better place by your actions, rather than by bleating on pointlessly.

Yeah, downvote away. You know you want to.

GJC

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By gum, that's chewy: Samsung's NF1 fattens M.2 card capacity with wider gumstick format

Geoff Campbell

You say that like it's a bad thing.

GJC

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Ailing ZX Spectrum reboot firm kicks crisis meeting into long grass

Geoff Campbell

<peers over glasses>

Oh? How so?

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Black Helicopters

Re: Shredding

I managed a complete (and replete) four drawer filing cabinet in two fairly lazy days, including time to scan and file all the stuff I wanted to keep.

It is a very therapeutic pastime, which I recommend for anyone.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Licences

That sounds exactly like they made the assumption they could just use the games ("because they're old and nobody cares, right?"), until one of the Directors spoke up and pointed out this wasn't the case.

Highly amusing to watch, if one doesn't have any money riding on the outcome.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Holmes

Licences

First time I saw this, and regularly since, I have posted questions in various places as to how they were planning to obtain licences for all the bundled games.

Never got an answer, at which point my interest in giving them any money at all evaporated.

GJC

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Keep your hands on the f*cking wheel! New Tesla update like being taught to drive by your dad

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Does tesla collect system records or incident information?

Very much so. The autopilot collects and reports detailed information every time the driver over-rides it.

There's also a second neural net that is constantly operating in "ghost mode", observing the road and making decisions just like autopilot (but without actioning them) and comparing those decisions to what the meatsack is doing at the time. This is used to train the primary software, over time.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Auto-crash-pilot

It should be noted here that setting the following distance is a meatsack function. There's a control with a range 1-7 (from memory) which sets the time interval to follow behind.

This one looks to me like it's set to closest follow distance, which is pretty damn stupid. I always use any intelligent cruise control on maximum separation, personally.

Now, if you want to debate why the meatsack is able to set the following distance, I'm right with you - prime evidence that the people designing these system don't quite grok safe driving, to me.

But then, the group mostly involved in cutting-edge programming are also the same group most over-represented in collision statistics - young males. Go figure...

GJC

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This HTC U12+ review page is left intentionally blank

Geoff Campbell
Holmes

Re: Review it.

The logical conclusion to that is to only ever review units bought in the normal retail channel. Which, actually, is a pretty good idea on a whole bunch of levels.

GJC

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Judge on Microsoft gender discrimination case finds 'flaw' in class grouping argument

Geoff Campbell

Re: A salient lesson

@Blank-Reg

Sorry, I failed to read to the end of the thread. There's probably a law for that, too...

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: A salient lesson

I think that's got to be the quickest Godwin's I've seen in 30 years on the Internet.

GJC

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FYI: Qualcomm hasn't given up on Arm-based Windows 10 slabtops

Geoff Campbell
Black Helicopters

Re: Hitching their wagons to Win-10-nic

That reminds me - anyone seen amanfrommars recently?

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

@Wade

Windows on ARM has a full x86 emulation layer, so it should run any 32-bit x86 Windows apps seamlessly. Early reports seem to show that the performance hit isn't hideous, either - Windows Central said that the Snapdragon 835 based HP Envy X2 was "kinda like an i3 running native applications, and kinda like an Atom running emulated applications". Or something, quotes from memory of a podcast I listened too whilst driving a few days ago.

The Snapdragon 845 and 850 should be even nicer, in theory. An interesting couple of years ahead.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Windows

Re: But can it run Linux?

Linux generally lags a little behind the leading edge of available hardware (yeah, I know, your downvotes fall upon me like a gentle Spring rain. Now ask me if I care...)

Given how compelling these devices look, I suspect full Linux builds will be available soon enough.

GJC

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RIP to two 'naut legends: A moonwalker and a spacewalker

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Only four left

I note that of the twelve people who have walked on the moon, only four are still alive. All in their 80s.

How on earth(*) did we let it get this bad? I mean, I know we have had a few orbiting space stations, but really. Time to step up to the plate again.

GJC

(*) Sorry.

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Dixons to shutter 92 UK Carphone Warehouse shops after profit warning

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: notably National Living Wage

Indeed.

Here's a radical idea for Carphone Warehouse - pay your staff 20% more that the industry average, with generous bonuses. Make them happy to work for you, and happy to be at work.

This will result in increased sales, at increased profit margins.

GJC

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BT to slash landline rentals by 37%... for the broadbandless

Geoff Campbell

Re: Mmmmmm, thanks, BT.

It's a local mesh servicde using 5GHz point-to-point directional antennas. I wasn't referring to the house WiFi.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Go

Mmmmmm, thanks, BT.

I ditched my landline years back. Internet comes via WiFi, the old house phone number was ported to a VOIP provider which runs nicely over that, and we all have mobiles as a fallback anyway.

So, thanks, BT, but I'm good.

GJC

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Tesla crash investigation causes dip in 'leccycar firm's share price

Geoff Campbell

Re: Electric Car Production Futility

But quite justifiable on a statistical basis.

GJC

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Chin up, SMEs. You might get crumbs from Big Tech tax clampdown – UK MPs

Geoff Campbell

Re: could be handed hundreds of millions in tax cuts

Lord Lucan, riding Shergar, pulling Santa Claus' sleigh at 15,000 feet, is the sort of level of probability we're looking at, I would suggest.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: could be handed hundreds of millions in tax cuts

s/probably/definitely/

FTFY.

GJC

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

Geoff Campbell

Re: Hmmmm, were I more cynical...

I see I've upset the Ferrari fans.

Good.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Black Helicopters

Hmmmm, were I more cynical...

...I might ponder on which cars caused the VSC that handed Ferrari the win. Haas, you say? The only team on the grid to owe Ferrari a huge favour?

Nah, can't be that, could it?

GJC

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Samsung’s DeX dock clicks the second time around

Geoff Campbell

Re: Casting

(Sorry, that was perhaps badly phrased. I mean that it required the same standardisation that any other docking system does. It's the standardisation that I need, to give me confidence I can use my pocket device when I turn up. I don't really care what that standardisation encompasses, so long as it works.)

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Casting

That still requires particular hardware to be available on site. If I have to carry my own keyboard/mouse/casting receiver/cables, I might as well just stick with my Surface Pro.

I want to ditch my briefcase completely, rather than ditching my laptop in favour of other devices to carry in it.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Go

Excellent idea...

...but not yet, I think.

As someone who travels around lots of offices on business, I yearn for the day when I can pitch up on site knowing that there is a docking station into which I can plug my phone, giving me full desktop access to all my documents and other work in progress.

But we're not even close to that level of standardisation yet, sadly. USB-C might help here, but that's just one layer in what is required.

GJC

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A ghoulish tale of pigs, devs and docs revived from the dead

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Lesson

For the record, I've been working in and with large IT projects for over three decades now.

I understand that testing is frequently done supremely badly or not at all. Which is why the lesson I pointed out should be learned by anyone who have been involved in such a clusterfuck.

Yeah, I'm an idealist. So sue me.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Lesson

Surely there is a lesson to be learned, and it is the remarkably simple one of "Test everything thoroughly before you go live, and don't go live until you know it works"?

Call me naive if you will...

GJC

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Jupiter has the craziest storms seen yet, say boffins

Geoff Campbell

Re: Yeah

Hemel Hempstead and Swindon both have Magic Roundabouts, which are groups of mini roundabouts around the outside of a central one.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Nah

Bit of both. I tend to use the HH one in these comments because it has six orbital roundabouts rather than the five that Swindon has, and if I recall correctly they are rather more tightly packed, too.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Black Helicopters

Nah

Hemel Hempstead got there first.

GJC

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Good luck saying 'Sorry I'm late, I had to update my car's firmware'

Geoff Campbell
FAIL

Re: "firmware fixes are needed but too often aren't installed."

My 2014 Tesla receives updates regularly.

GJC

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MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)

Geoff Campbell

Re: Cool. Just Cool

She claims to be, yes.

You should, perhaps, learn not to take humorous comments posted twenty years after the event as actual gospel truth, although I confess that there was chinese takeway involved at one point - birth is a long process, a chap gets hungry.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: GPS

Last I heard was "Early 2018", although I have seen people claiming that Tesla said "January 2018", but I've seen no evidence of that myself.

Either way, it probably won't be long now. Say, middle of next year...

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Go

Re: Don't Panic!

I see my stalker has woken up again, registering a downvote against every message I post, however innocuous. Welcome back!

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: GPS

Hell yes. An amazing show.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: GPS

Apple Maps even at its worst has absolutely *nothing* on the howlers the Tesla SatNav can perpetrate.

Fortunately, I hear there's a completely new SatNav application due to land Real Soon Now, and being an honourable company Tesla will roll it out to all their cars using the OTA update mechanism.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Don't know if posted already?

The two are not mutually exclusive. I don't know enough about the fuel system to know if fuel starvation might have caused the failure to re-light.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Cool. Just Cool

I lounged around the place eating chinese takeaway whilst my daughter was born, and now also claim that I assisted in the process. Although I try to make sure I've got a good head-start on my dear Wife when I do so.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Can't sell it, the battery's old and tired.

It's not going to Mars. The aim was for a Mars transfer orbit, which is an elliptical orbit around the Sun. Looks like they overshot (more or less intentionally, they just burned the rocket until the fuel ran out) and it's now headed for the asteroids. Which is deeply, deeply cool.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Don't Panic!

There was also a copy of the book and a towel in the glove box, I hear. Very cool.

GJC

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Why did I buy a gadget I know I'll never use?

Geoff Campbell

Re: Misty-eyed

See above, under "eBay". Bits of old PC hardware pricing has a classic bath-tub curve. For some years you can't give them away, then they start increasing in value again as they become rarer and sought after.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: been bought, borrowed or stolen in the first place

If you can fit them under your desk, you don't have enough of them.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Misty-eyed

Those sort of adaptor plugs make great desk toys for fiddling with as one contemplates the ineffable wossnames of the universe. Always fun to see how high a column of stuff-plugged-into-other-stuff one can construct. IEC power converters are my favourite currently, and Ethernet T pieces and terminators were excellent back in the day.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Go

eBay

Every couple of years, I have a big trawl through the storage tubs, and sell everything that looks like it still works, and which I can identify. Quick photo, list at 99p starting bid plus a couple of quid postage. A lot will sell for that 99p, some will go a bit higher, but some go silly, for no reason I can fathom - I recently sold a 15 year old Roland MIDI synth thing for three times the new price, to a chap in Italy, who was delighted with it, and old Nokia phones and tablets are perennial good sellers.

Be prepared for a couple of buyers complaining that their purchase doesn't work or didn't arrive - just refund them immediately and in full. Life's too short to argue.

Anything that I can't identify goes back in the tubs for the next round in a few years, of course.

This normally nets a few hundred quid, which can of course be spent on new, even more useless, gadgets and cables.

GJC

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Ford giving electric car investment a jolt to the tune of $11bn

Geoff Campbell

Re: Alas, poor Tesla

Those are mostly compliance cars, made by taking an existing body and bunging a few batteries and a weak electric motor in them. Poor performance, poor range, no support infrastructure.

The Leaf is OK, and the GM Bolt is showing some promise, but those are the only two I can see as at all worthy, and neither are even close to anything Tesla are doing, and have been doing for years. Battery management in particular is a real problem in most EVs except for Tesla.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

"Liquid dinosaurs" is a colloquial term, intended to be mildly derogatory. I'm perfectly well aware that liquid hydrocarbons are mostly dead sealife, especially plants and plankton.

I'm also very well aware of the history of electric cars, thanks. I don't see the relevance to the future of them, though.

The transition to renewable energy sources is very, very necessary. It shouldn't be too expensive, if it's handled in the right way. The longer we leave it, the more expensive it will be, however.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Sure, but it's not an overnight transition we're talking about. All these things are very manageable over the coming decades.

Or you could just stick your head in the sand and keep burning liquid dinosaurs for your transport. Your choice.

GJC

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