* Posts by smudge

688 posts • joined 8 Aug 2008

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Cutting custody snaps too costly for cash-strapped cops – UK.gov

smudge
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I don't believe it

These records are structured around a person’s contacts with the police...

However deletion from the PND will not lead to an automatic deletion from the local police system as there is no link back from PND to local systems.

It's not clear whether "these records" refers to the local records or the PND records.

However, there must be some structure and context around PND records. There must be identification of who the images are of, and probably why they are there, when they were created, and where they came from. Otherwise it's just a jumble of unlabelled images.

So there must be a link back - albeit an inefficient one - to local systems.

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Size does matter, chaps: Oversized todgers an evolutionary handicap

smudge
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Re: I am disappointed

Gene Hunt and not a single play on words

Much easier with his brother Mike.

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BT rearranges deck chairs, launches good ship Enterprise

smudge
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Re: Translation Required

"Combining our enterprise businesses will allow us to strengthen the services and products we offer to businesses and sharpen our focus on customer service, through clear accountabilities and by introducing efficiencies."

Do I take it that "leveraging synergies across business units to be more than the sum of our parts" has gone the way of the dodo?

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smudge
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Re: Knock, Knock, Adastral Park*

That makes as much sense as most management-speak nowadays.

You may have come far, but you'll also go far.

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Guess who's still most moaned about UK ISP... Rhymes with BorkBork

smudge
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Pint

Re: I miss Demon Internet

My website is still there - years after I left them.

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Windows 10 Spring Creators Update team explains the hold-up: You little BSOD!

smudge
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Re: Bring my optical disk drive back!!

@Greg D - thanks, but sticking a disc in doesn't help. The disc access light comes on for a few seconds, then goes out. The disc doesn't spin up.

But now I find that if a stick a disc in and then fire up Disk Management, that seems to force it to find ALL the drives - and the optical drive is there and ready for use by everything!

So thanks again - you pointed me in the right direction. And my olde librarie of ye ancient DVDs is not yet a collection of coasters and bird-scarers :)

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smudge
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Re: Bring my optical disk drive back!!

@Doctor Syntax

Use more up-to-date hardware. The fashion there is to leave optical drives out "because there's no demand" as I was told when I asked about it.

Jeez, that was really helpful. I appreciate that there may not be demand nowadays, but there is a vast installed base of optical drives around the world, which will continue to function for years to come.

@Greg D - thanks, but sticking a disc in doesn't help. The disc access light comes on for a few seconds, then goes out. The disc doesn't spin up.

@javapapa - let me introduce you to Doctor Syntax. I feel that you two are made for each other...

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smudge
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Windows

Bring my optical disk drive back!!

Just realised yesterday that Win 10 no longer recognises my Bluray/DVD drive. Or, to be precise, Disk Management and Device Manager report it as being there and working properly, but File Explorer and all other applications just don't know it's there.

It seems that this is a common problem that has being occurring for years. There isn't a proprietary driver for the device, so the generic Windows driver is used. And it must have changed recently.

Have tried all the suggested fixes. Changing the drive letter, uninstalling and rebooting, registry edits, swapping the SATA connectors around on the motherboard, etc. Only one which worked in any way was moving the SATA connectors around, but that only worked sometimes, and for one use of the drive only.

If anyone knows of any other solutions, please reply.

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HMRC delays digi tax plans amid Brexit customs woes

smudge
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Re: I hope that HMRC...

IMHO, Dover will be a port to avoid.

As will import and export of perishable goods.

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smudge
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Facepalm

Re: On a slightly related tangent...

In other words, can we not effectively ban LHD lorries and EU-licensed HGV drivers from our roads to improve road safety?

Yeah sure. Cos we'll never again want to export anything to the EU or have our true-Brit drivers and their RHD lorries travel abroad. Not to mention your next little hop across to pick up cheap booze and fags, play golf, go camping in the Dordogne....

Your scheme also depends on fairly precisely equal numbers of trailers going in each direction, will add immense costs, and still has those dastardly un-maintained death-trap Continental trailers all over the Queen's (Gawd bless 'er) highways.

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My Tibetan digital detox lasted one morning, how about yours?

smudge
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Headmaster

Re: When "off duty" and out & about with the Wife ...

There's a very well-known message which conveys the same meaning and is much shorter!

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An easy-breezy attitude to sharing personal data is the only thing keeping the app economy alive

smudge
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Re: And that's exactly why...

I do not need nor feel the need to tell the world and it's dog what I had for breakfast, where I had breakfast, provide an image of that breakfast and a map to the location of the eatery in which I ate breakfast to prove it either.

But you have just told world + dog that you do eat breakfast, and that you go out to eat it. More than enough for them to get started on you :)

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2001 set the standard for the next 50 years of hard (and some soft) sci-fi

smudge
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Re: The models

IIRC the space station survived a bit longer and ended up being dumped in Stevenage.

Mentioned in the Guardian last month...

http://www.visual-memory.co.uk/faq/images/ss4.jpg

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smudge
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Alien

Re: Still Waiting...

Ringworld, please - and sequels.

Or maybe a whole series based in Known Space.

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Facebook want us to believe banning Putin's troll army safeguards Russian democracy

smudge
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For the record, it isn't "about where the data" are. It covers EU legal entities processing data on US citizens in the US and US entities processing data on EU citizens in the US.

Cheers for that. Have become a bit out of touch since I stopped working.

That last bit intrigues. Are we really saying that EU legislation will apply to US entities processing data in the US? How do we enforce that?

Don't we spend a lot of time in Register comments slagging off the US for trying to impose their laws on the rest of the world?

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smudge
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Paris Hilton

And it's not about who the users are - their nationality or their location. It's about where the data is.

Does he understand that?

Paris, cos she'll cause them no end of confusion.

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Tech’s big lie: Relations between capital and labor don't matter

smudge
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Re: Too expensive to fire?

However when I joined IBM in the mid-90's they were just starting a round of lay-offs.

In the early 90s, I (non-IBM) was working on a major programme in the UK where IBM was the prime contractor. They started laying off staff - it may have been the first time that they had ever done so.

They picked on the wrong bunch of people to lay off. It was those with 30+ years service - although in these case they were certainly customer-facing. Pretty clued-up, knowlegeable people. There was a lot of resentment amongst this group about the way that they were being treated - and of course they knew the company, they knew their rights, they knew how much money IBM could save, they knew how much money they could get out of IBM, and they knew exactly what to do. They took the company to the cleaners.

If your colleagues in the mid-90s were in the UK, then they may well have reaped the benefits of what this earlier group achieved.

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User fired IT support company for a 'typo' that was actually a real word

smudge
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Re: sub for a riot

but did you ever ask your girlfriend for coal?

Still trying to work that out. But I do know that sex is what they carry the coal in, in Morningside, the posh district of Edinburgh.

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smudge
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Pint

Re: Validation Vs verification

Many, many years ago, a colleague was heading off abroad, and wanted to send a telex to say when he'd be arriving. Last line of his message was "Put the wine in the fridge and the pizza in the oven.". He handwrote the message and passed it over to the telex operator.

The clent was a bit bemused to receive a message which said "PUT THE URINE IN THE FRIDGE..."

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

smudge
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Go

Re: Same concept...

...the flow on the inside lanes is usually better.

I leave and rejoin the inside lane, and I don't move into lanes further out until it is obvious even to an arsehole like me that they are moving faster and will remain that way. So thank you for your detailed justification of my tactics!

I'll wave next time I am passing.

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smudge
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Re: Same concept...

So explain why, in really heavy traffic, the inside lane or lanes nearly always move faster than the outside lanes.

If I am in the outside lane and see a three-lane jam ahead of me, first thing I try to do is get into the middle lane - then take it from there.

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smudge
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Re: Same concept...

Works more reliably in areas with low population density, where it's not likely that any 3rd party on the on ramp would accidentally derail the plan.

Have used that many times to cut down wait time in traffic jams on the M25 around London.

Though you have to know which junctions have roundabouts above them, so that you can get back on, and which have non-intersecting slip roads,when you find yourself heading away to points unknown :)

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How do you make those darn code monkeys do what you want? Just give 'em a little nudge

smudge
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Facepalm

Let the devs decide!

"We started asking developers to think about things like monitoring and resilience. It's hard to tell a team that they may be woken up at 2am if it breaks. You have to give your teams a level of power to take decisions."

How about the business - not the developers - deciding what level of resilience they want and are willing to pay for... and specifying it in the requirements? You do have requirements? Ohhh....

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UK watchdog finally gets search warrant for Cambridge Analytica's totally not empty offices

smudge
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Re: Elvis has left the building

Please tell me that's an attempt at humour!

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Programming languages can be hard to grasp for non-English speakers. Step forward, Bato: A Ruby port for Filipinos

smudge
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Headmaster

There's a PhD in that

Because so many programming environments are based on English, the structure of sentences and expressions can be difficult for non-speakers to pick up even when the words themselves are translated.

Would be interesting to investigate that. You'd be able to cover Chomsky's classification of formal grammars as well as his ideas on a universal grammar for natural languages.

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We need to talk, Brit Parliamentary committee tells Mark Zuckerberg

smudge
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Re: About time

We're a bit short of gunboats these days, so unless he comes voluntarily there's not much HMG can do...

"My dearest Donald,

You know this Assange fella that many of your chappies would like to have a chinwag with? If you could, ah, see your way to persuading Zuk to pay us a visit, I'm pretty confident that we could deliver Assange to you with no more than minor transit damage. Might have to drop a sweetener to the Ecuadorians - so perhaps you could see your way to taking more of their bananas and shrimps? I'm sure that Melania (give her my love!) will know some good recipes for them.

Regards to your boss - tell him to ignore everything I've been saying in public. Got to keep up appearances - you'll know that!

Toodle-oo,

Boris"

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I couldn't give a Greek clock about your IoT fertility tracker

smudge
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might like an article?

Have you tried "New Scientist"? Worth a go.

In fact, they could do with a regular technology column. Step into Barry Fox's shoes :)

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Office junior had one job: Tearing perforated bits off tractor-feed dot matrix printer paper

smudge
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Pint

some strange sort of manually-operated machine called a Banda which duplicated hand-written forms,

Oh God, I can smell it right now :)

"The duplicating fluid typically consisted of a 50/50 mix of isopropanol and methanol"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirit_duplicator

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smudge
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My foreign body story

A long time ago in a computer room far far away we had a DECwriter II attached to a PDP-11. For those under 50 (55?, 60?), a DECwriter was a keyboard terminal, but with paper, not a screen. You could type stuff in using it, and it would print stuff out - up to 132 characters across the page.

Here's some info - http://www.computinghistory.org.uk/det/3367/Digital-DECWriter-II/

So all of a sudden, this DECwriter suddenly starts printing only 80 characters per line. This was very significant because, as no one under 60 (65? 70?) will know, 80 characters is the width of an IBM punch card. The IBM card became the industry standard, and, when computer terminals were introduced - both printer terminals and screen-based terminals - it was very common for them to be 80 characters wide.

Everything was working perfectly - except that it just wouldn't print more than 80 characters on a line. A longer line would be split into two. Annoying, and very puzzling.

So we spent a few days trying everything we could to find out what the problem was. Re-installing the OS (RSX-11M). Re-starting the machine umpteen times. Disconnecting and re-attaching the DECwriter. And so on. But the damn thing wouldn't print past the 80th column.

Then one day it occurred to me - a software guy - that maybe I should actually look at the device itself. I immediately discovered the problem - a pencil! It had fallen into the DECwriter and was firmly jammed in the path of the print head. By adjusting the position of the right-hand side paper tractor, you could use different widths of paper in the DECwriter. So our DECwriter was quite happily printing away, hitting the pencil, and doing CR/LF.

It was sheer bloody coincidence - down to the posiion of the pencil - that it was printing only 80 characters!

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UK.gov urged to ensure punters can 'still roam like at home' after Brexit

smudge
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Pint

Re: Oink, oink, flap, flap.

As for so many hundreds of other things, stay in the EU.

Too right. Today it's roaming charges and air traffic control. Tomorrow it could be nuclear medicines and fishing rights. The day after, security co-operation and reciprocal social security and pension rights.

A myriad detailed topics to be negotiated, and so far all we've done so far is establish that we could always have had blue passports anyway.

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smudge
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Holmes

Re: Ha

we already comply with their standards and want frictionless trade

You've missed the bit where we have said that we will be able to diverge from their standards? Not covered by the Daily Heil / Torygraph or Brexit Bugle?

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Ex-GCHQ boss: All the ways to go after Russia. Why pick cyberwar?

smudge
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Black Helicopters

Re: Keeping the powder dry

What Hannigan has been a little coy about is the single most important reason for not launching a cyber assault on Russia: it's in the nature of cyber weapons that they age very rapidly.

No. The single most important reason is that people, important people, Government people - on which side of the Atlantic I can't remember, but possibly both - have said that using offensive cyberweapons is tantamount to a declaration of war. That there is little difference between bombing somewhere and taking out their information infrastructure.

So if we were to do that, Putin would say that we have declared war on him. And we know who will come off worse.

Talk over the last few days of using cyberweapons has been very alarming. Just stop it, OK?

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With IoT you too can turn your home into a giant flashing 'HORSE BIRTH NOW' klaxon

smudge
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Paris Hilton

Surely it can be adapted...

... for humans?

You get an alert telling you that Jasmine-Chardonnay is about to pop, and then you get real-time video of the event, with interactive discussion forum. A smaller window pops up, and Ray Winstone tells you it's your last chance to bet on the kid's size, hair colour, number of fingers, skin colour...

Paris, because she's clearly checking if it's been fitted OK.

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Brit spooks slammed over 'gentlemen's agreement' with telcos to get mass comms data

smudge
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Unhappy

Re: No surprises here

The Secretary of State who oversees GCHQ is Her Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, the Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP.

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Inviting nearby exoplanet revealed as radiation-baked hell

smudge
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Pint

Re: Need I finish the book?

Thanks, guys. In fact, he gets his memory back, realises that he's a replicant, and goes off with the aliens in their mothership.

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smudge
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Alien

Need I finish the book?

By sheer coincidence, I am just about halfway through "Proxima", by Stephen Baxter. I thought it took a little while to get going, but I am reasonably hooked now, and I will finish it. Published in 2013, it does indeed have the star flaring quite frequently, but not as badly as we know now.

No spoilers, please!

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RIP... almost: Brit high street gadget shack Maplin Electronics

smudge
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Re: Well at least

Homebase belongs to Bunnings now. Unless there's news I've not heard it's not at any imminent risk...

https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/bunnings-uk-woes-deepen-with-1-billion-writedown-20180205-p4yze8.html

"Retail giant Wesfarmers could abort its troubled invasion of the British Isles as soon as June after admitting it made serious mistakes when trying to transplant the successful Bunnings model to the northern hemisphere...."

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Irish eyes are sighing: Data protection office notes olagoanin'* up 79%

smudge
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Joke

olagoanin

Thought that was the Irish BBC news reporter who is always reporting from some hellish war zone.

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Full shift to electric vans would melt Royal Mail's London hub, MPs told

smudge
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Happy

Re: I'd love a Tesla model S with a V8 instead of the electric drive.

There's often a car parked at the gym I go to, with what is clearly a personalised number plate from an earlier car.

The number is "V8 XYZ" (not really "XYZ" of course).

The car is, as you guessed, a Tesla :)

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Oi, drag this creaking, 217-year-old UK census into the data-driven age

smudge
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Re: Bitrot

Paper forms will last hundreds of years under the right storage conditions.

2011 paper forms were shredded, pulped and recycled. After being archived onto microfilm.

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smudge
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Re: A historian writes...

We need to keep the paper census. Yes it costs, but it's worth it. ... And in a hundred years our great-grand-children can look at them, see how bad great-grandma's handwriting was, and marvel at great-grandpa being a Jedi Knight!

But the paper census is already damaged. The 2011 Census was the first at which you could fill in the questionnaire online instead of on paper. The percentage of online submissions was in the mid-teens.

Yes, the paper forms were scanned. and stored on micro-film, so if anyone is still around in 2111, they will be available to all.* But the information submitted online will never be seen.

* Pro tip - one way of sending a message to your descendants is to scrawl it on your Census form. If it's not obscene or defamatory, it will appear in 100 years' time!

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Trump buries H-1B visa applicants in paperwork

smudge
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Re: It's a cyclical pendulum ...

Do you know anyone from India, or anything about it?

Hi, stupid Trump voter. Anyone who works in IT in the UK will know someone from India, and will likely have worked with folk from India, either in person or remotely. Many people in IT in the UK are from Indian families. We know A LOT about India when it comes to getting IT work done.

Now, what was your point?

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smudge
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Mushroom

Re: The Donald is a winner!

don't you really mean Donald Duck?

After he compared the size of his nuclear button with Kim Jong-Un's, I started calling him Donald Dick.

Wasn't that what he wanted?

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Voice assistants are always listening. So why won't they call police if they hear a crime?

smudge
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Is it live, or is it Memorex?

These devices, or the cloud services that power them, can easily understand when someone is angry, or terrified or in pain.

And can they tell when that someone is physically present in the room, and when they are being relayed through the loud, high-quality home cinema setup in the room?

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NRA gives FCC boss Ajit Pai a gun as reward for killing net neutrality. Yeah, an actual gun

smudge
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Facepalm

Banning 5 million legal firearms is almost impossible.

5 million?? Here's some news for you - most estimates reckon that there are between 300 million and 350 million firearms in the USA. You don't have to be a member of the NRA to own one, or, indeed, to own an arsenal.

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smudge
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Holmes

Re: We have the clueless leading the blind...

Some of the worst gun tragedies in history have occurred in countries with the most stringent gun laws.

But the great majority of them have occurred.... where?

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Vatican sets up dedicated exorcism training course

smudge
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Devil

Opportunity

He said there were about 500,000 cases requiring exorcism in Italy each year.

The population of Italy is about 60M, so this is nearly 1% of the population!

Anyway, it's a large number, so surely there must be savings to be made by offshoring the exorcism function. I've known managers who believed that the physical locks on an HSM in the Netherlands could be operated from Bangalore, so remote casting out of demons should be a doddle. As far as I know, the inverse square law doesn't apply to the forces of good and evil, so someone coming down a crappy line from afar should be just as effective as someone in the actual room - and also a lot safer.

I would give the exorcism contract to Tata, purely for their name.

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Blockchain nears peak hype: UK politicos to probe crypto-coin

smudge
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Big Brother

Would regulation...

... include taxation, by any chance?

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A print button? Mmkay. Let's explore WHY you need me to add that

smudge
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Re: Huh ?

Upvoted. When I reached the end of the article, I had no idea what the point or message was.

Clearly, I don't speak DevOps.

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Farts away! Plane makes unscheduled stop after man won't stop guffing

smudge
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I heard this story over the weekend and assumed it was bullshit

Impossible. The bull wouldn't have fitted into a seat.

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