More of the wonderful results from the SEO industry.
Stuff in sufficient keywords and anything you didn't want, with little or no relevance can be pushed to the top of the garbage pile.
127 posts • joined 14 Oct 2008
This one's old enough that it's hardware rather than software testing.
Vinten Communications used to make the radio equipment used by the Victorian Police and other emergency services.
This was back in the days of valves and dangerously high voltages.
They had one wiresman in particular who was absolutely meticulous in his work. Every wire of a particular colour entering one end of the loom would exit at precisely the same position with respect to all of its neighbors. This greatly simplified fault finding. (Debugging wasn't yet a part of the common vernacular.) As such, he was the go to person for all new prototypes.
On day however, a new product was put on the test bench for it's first power on. Unbeknown to the wiresman, his colleagues had got there first.
The prototype was duly turned on, and they watched the blood drain from the poor wiresman's face, as smoke started wafting out of the case.
One worker was hidden away out of sight, and a string of waxed paper drinking straws had been run to an inconspicuous location on the unit under test.
The hidden worker was blowing cigarette smoke through the straws.
However one of the observers broke up laughing, and the ruse was revealed, much to the relief and annoyance of the poor wiresman. The device itself worked flawlessly.
Radios before transistors were valve radios (thermionic valve radios to be more precise). They used a vibrator (no, not that kind) where a solenoid would open the contacts supplying power to its own coil. (A bit like an automotive turn signal flasher can on crystal meth.) The resulting intermittent power would provide pseudo AC power to step-up transformers to generate the necessary high voltages to run the valves. There were no transistors in those radios. Triodes and Pentodes, not transistors.
(The inverter circuitry sometimes had its own box, hidden in the engine bay to keep noise (electrical and acoustic) well away from the radio itself.)
There were portable (a loosely defined term at best) that ran on valves, powered usually from lantern sized dry cell batteries.
Then came the transistor, allowing a radio that was much smaller and ran on far safer voltages.
"Or what did you think they used before silicon?"
Germanium. (Well you did ask.)
Germanium transistors were what you usually found in early transistor radios. Silicon transistors came along later.
What makes you think it's restricted to the UK?
As I'm not British either, I felt it best to be carefully non-specific.
And just about anything to do with Donald Trump.
It seems to be endemic to the breed anywhere around the world.
(I'm an equal opportunity cynic.)
"A few years back I was working for Scotrail, well not them, but as a sub contractor to the contractor contracted to the contractor with the contract for Scotrail."
Lone Star, is that you?
The Schwartz be with you.
Dark Helmet: I am your father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.
My father used to work for the now defunct "Vinten Communications".
They had one "wiresman" who was absolutely meticulous in his wiring. If a wire entered a loom at a particular location, you could be certain it would come out at exactly the same location at the other end of the loom.
So this fellow was always assigned the new prototypes, as his attention to detail made any necessary troubleshooting of the new prototype so much easier.
One day after he had finished assembly of one such prototype unit, the staff gathered around to watch it fire up for the first time.
The power was switched on, and after a few moments smoke started wafting out of the prototype.
The wiresman's face slowly turned white as the smoke billowed forth.
Unbeknownst to him, the staff had hidden some paper drinking straws taped end-to end into the back of the unit, with one of the staff hidden away at the far end of these straws, blowing cigarette smoke down the straw. Fortunately for the poor wiresman, one of the observers couldn't hold a straight face for too long, exposing the practical joke as everyone cracked up laughing.
Strangely enough the poor wiresman was not amused.
So Douglas Adams was right, even before he wrote that "what they really couldn't stand was a smartarse."
Icon? Well where there's smoke...
Back in the late 70s, I was a young apprentice.
The company I worked for also imported cheap Taiwanese bench grinders.
One of these had been returned under warranty, so was on the department manager's bench with the base off to check the wiring. When nothing obvious presented itself the switch was turned on and we retreated to the office doorway. These grinders used a large capacitor and a centrifugal switch to energize the motor start winding with the resulting L/C circuit providing a phase shift to ensure the motor started in the right direction. The grinder started up and seemed to be running normally, until with a loud bang, the capacitor blew its lid, (through the small covered pressure relief hole in the end of the cap) blasting a jet of evil smelling vapor directly at all standing in the doorway.
We at least now knew what the fault was. The centrifugal switch "didn't", leaving the start winding connected. The start winding and capacitor weren't designed to run for more than about 10 seconds, so the capacitor overheated, boiling the electrolyte until the weak point cried uncle.
The office became almost uninhabitable for days, and took many months before the smell finally faded to barely perceptible levels.
I still work for the same company some 40 odd years later.
" Next Amazon delivery setup, orbital warehouses dropping capsules with whatever you ordered.
The step after that, they drop meals which cook using the heat of re-entry."
(Start at 3042 for the back story. Or better still, start at 1 for the full experience.)
When you take into account that Sun originally touted Java as being "C++ --" it was built directly upon the syntax and power of C++ (and C before it), but added on garbage collection to mitigate memory leaks, (their reasoning behind the --) Java can't really stand on the high ground of "Original Code".
It is (allegedly) a progression from the work of those that came before.
Now when Google created their own runtime engine, that used the same basic Java code syntax and function naming conventions, with the explicit blessings of Sun, later bought by Oracle, Oracle now choose to cry foul?
The mobile JRE produced by Sun / Oracle had many inclusions that had absolutely no use in the Android marketplace, but Oracle demanded that to use Java in the mobile space mandated the use of their Mobile JRE (with ongoing royalties), so Google chose to develop their own runtime engine, Dalvik, which they specifically do not call a JRE as it doesn't implement the full Java specification, or claim to be a Java engine.
Now Oracle claim that because it uses Java like syntax and naming (C++ -- anyone?) that Google is infringing upon their copyright.
Neither Pot or Kettle are without their optical spectrum absorption properties here, but Oracle's greed on this one would move all programming back into the dark ages, as nobody could program anything without fear of being sued for copyright infringement because multiplication and division get called from the "Math" library, and user the characters * and / respectively. (Clearly infringing upon the API copyright rather than just being a sensible aggregation of like processes with a logically descriptive library name. That is basically what Oracle are arguing.)
And don't get me started on software patents!
(I sincerely miss the wonderful work of Pamela Jones and Groklaw on topics such as this.)
also fall with a hell of a thud, when (not if) the rotors suddenly stop spinning due to any number of possible causes. Even with some sort of "Dead Man" chute arrangement, you still have a heavy payload that is guaranteed to obey the law of gravity, ending up:
(a) stuck on a roof,
(b) in a tree,
(c) on a busy freeway,
(d) all of the above.
Pretty well anywhere other than the intended destination.
And you can bet that the lawyers will be on standby when it does.
And as the ability to hover at the intended destination will be an indispensable requirement, two or more spinning rotors are guaranteed to be present, ready to slice and dice their way through any (in)convenient obstacle(s).
And all this from the self-same countries that screamed blue murder over data sovereignty and "Safe harbor" because their citizens privacy might be impacted.
Now we know why. This way they might be able to keep all the data where their backdoored encryption keys can be used to get at it.
What? Me cynical?
Considering the history and expense already involved in this case:
Require TSCOG to deposit a security bond with the court before proceeding with the appeal process.
Enough to cover court costs, and the total value of IBM's counterclaims (with triple damages of course) in the event that TSCOG lose on appeal.
I'm sure that the Court can set the bond at a suitable value.
And if TSCOG do win anything on appeal, the bond is to be distributed among TSCOG's outstanding bankruptcy creditors. (Along with a very serious slapping for not having used this money for paying outstanding creditors in the first place.)
If you can't afford to lose, don't play.
(Cheques, Credit Cards, Promissory Notes, TSCOG Stock Certificates, IOU's and lotto tickets not accepted. Strictly cash or equivalents.)
By which I presume you actually mean landed on "Of course I still love you" somewhere out at sea?
Which makes the landing all the more impressive.
Congratulations to Elon and his crew.
(The icon? Not This Time at least.)
The fire was pointing in the correct direction so it did go to space today.
Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020