* Posts by JimC

1643 posts • joined 24 Apr 2007

Euro bureaucrats tie up .eu in red tape to stop Brexit Brits snatching back their web domains

JimC
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> Registries with strict eligibility requirements always have smaller numbers of registrations

Bearing in mind the percentage of registrations that are

a) Spammy or

b) pointless duplications or

c) crime related or

d) cyber squat or otherwise bad faith

I'm not convinced this is a bad thing unless you run a domain registry...

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Article 13 pits Big Tech and bots against European creatives

JimC
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Re: copyright mafia...

One of the greatest triumphs of fake news, big lies and useful idiots is the way that rights societies, basically co-operatives of small people, have been successfully portrayed as big business, and Google et al as the defenders of freedom. Even the media companies are minnows compared to the 800lb gorilla, and yet there are still people all over this thread who fall for it...

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Expanding Right To Be Forgotten slippery slope to global censorship, warn free speech fans

JimC
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Re: should SEO be made illegal?

Its a nice thought. I'm not sure I can see a downside. I'm certainly struggling to think of one...

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Sextortion scum armed with leaked credentials are persistent pests

JimC
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Re: Why me?

Why on earth would they bother to choose when its so much easier to just mail everyone on their list?

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PPI pushers now need consent to cold-call you

JimC
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Re: They'll then move on to something else

late air flight compensation looks a likely candidate...

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Judge bars distribution of 3D gun files... er, five years after they were slapped onto the web

JimC
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Re: Why didnt they make an engine then?

Company manufactures 2 Stroke engine as demonstration piece

- Press coverage one paragraph on the bottom of page 15 of a trade magazine

Company manufactures gun as demonstration piece

- Press coverage worldwide front pages.

Can we look forward to them making some kind of sex toy next as a technology demonstration?

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A third of London boroughs 'fess to running unsupported server software

JimC
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The FoI – a glorified sales pitch –

Exactly. How much time would you want your council's staff to take off doing something useful like supporting the end users to respond to something like that. 5 minutes? One minute?

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London's Gatwick Airport flies back to the future as screens fail

JimC
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Big Brother

Pedantic Geography

I contest that West Sussex adjoins London. There's still a few miles of Surrey and Kent that the GLC hasn't subsumed...

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Devon County Council techies: WE KNOW IT WASN'T YOU!

JimC
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Re: You may be missing careful wording folks...

Or, now I think of it, it was sloppy wording, and they never intended to directly blame the IT system, just explain that they had all new letter templates which hadn't been properly checked.

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JimC
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You may be missing careful wording folks...

“We’ve been trialling a new IT printing system" - Presumably true

"a number of mistakes were unfortunately not picked up before this letter was dispatched.” - obviously true

However they don't actually say the IT system was responsible for the mistakes, although quite probably the mistakes were made as a result of changing to the new printing system, they just weren't made *by* the printing system...

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JimC
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Re: Surely...To the wrong payee,

If you think the banks check all that stuff much any more you can send me a cheque for 50 quid signed Michael Mouse and we'll see what happens...

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New age discrim row: Accenture, Facebook sued by sales boss for favoring 'new blood'

JimC
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The Mooks, every time

The others are lacking a can-do attitude, it being far more important to have a can-do attitude than actually be able to do...

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Oi, clickbait cop bot, jam this in your neural net: Hot new AI threatens to DESTROY web journos

JimC
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Therein lies the problem - its not the headline..

A headline is designed and intended to be clickbait. What makes it the undesirable side of clickbait is not the headline itself, but the content that it leads to. So, I submit, what is needed is Ais that can determine how worthwhile the content is. Some factors might include:

- More than 300 words of real content per page:

- Less than 3 pages total unless very high word counts

- Images that are not reproduces endlessly elsewhere

- Thumbnail images that are contained in the first page

- unique text

and I'm sure we could add many more...

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Internet overseer ICANN loses a THIRD time in Whois GDPR legal war

JimC
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Mind you I'm more than a bit uncomfortable

about the sale of domain names without a legit contact. Admittedly that horse has largely bolted, but there damn well ought to be a traceble organisation behind every spam and malware domain registration. OTOH publicly publishing names is clearly a bad thing: I was on the wrong end of that 25 years ago - which is another story.

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Now that's a dodgy Giza: Eggheads claim Great Pyramid can focus electromagnetic waves

JimC
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Re: Extra points for Piazzi Smyth

My mother came home with "Our Inheritance in the Great Pyramid" from a jumble sale when I was young. Even then it was obviously first class woo, even before that was invented. Check it out here https://archive.org/details/ourinheritancein00smytuoft

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Think tank calls for post-Brexit national ID cards: The kids have phones so what's the difference?

JimC
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Re: FTFY...

Actually, There's low confidence in any government

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JimC
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Re: my skin is The Right Colour,

Not true at all. Plenty of Australian and Canadian Commonwealth citizens have been windrushed.

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JimC
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Not just Windrush. was Re: Let's get one thing straight. Right here. Right now.

Lets get another thing straight. The "Windrush" changing of the goalposts affected many many more people than just that one ship. The destruction of that set of not especially definitive records was utterly irrelevant to all the rest of us who found ourselves in the same predicament. It was kinda handy though, because the process to demonstrate your right to stay was very expensive and very bureaucratic - no surprise to anyone who's had much dealings with the home office.

At least as a result of Windrush the system got streamlined and cheapened. Not, by and large free as advertised - are people generally aware that we all got officially photographed and fingerprinted and most people were charged a very substantial "handling fee" after having to travel to one of the remaining main post offices - quite few and far between in parts of the country - that have the equipment.

I shall be very interested to see whether the home office decides it has to fingerprint and photograph EU citizens who gain a right to residence. It all depends how Home Office policy - something which as rightly observed above seems to be largely independant of ministers and even party in power evolves. It will be interesting to see if they become as hostile to EU citizens as they are to we commonwealth citizens. In the short term at least I doubt it.

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Brit comms providers told: You must tell people when their cheap contract's about to end

JimC
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If they really want to do consumers a favour

They'll ban these cheap year one expensive thereafter tariffs so that consumers won't have to change insurance/power/every other damn supplier every year...

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Ecuador's Prez talking to UK about Assange's six-year London Embassy stay – reports

JimC
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Re: "rape charges sound like bollock"

So a #Idon'tbelieveher from Mr Homer then...

Must be a bit of a bugger when right-on politically correct causes clash...

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Here's why AI can't make a catchier tune than the worst pop song in the charts right now

JimC
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speaking as an amateur musician

The article makes it sound as if the main reason Ais are having trouble is because the people designing them don't have a great understanding of music. The text gives me the impression that the AIs are failing to work out basic song structure, which at the chart level is highly formulaic. Much the same can be said for intervals that make up basic melodies.

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LabCorp ransomed, 18k routers rooted, a new EXIF menace, and more

JimC
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Re: Silk Road

Not to mention that your darling facilitated many more of those crimes than any single individual would be able to commit.

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Fake prudes: Catholic uni AI bot taught to daub bikinis on naked chicks

JimC
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I look forward with interest to seeing the work of their opposite numbers in Teheran...

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What if tech moguls brewed real ale?

JimC
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Microfocale

A blend of several different old ales that no-one was interested in drinking anymore...

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Code of conduct claims new Texas Instruments CEO after just six weeks

JimC
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Re: an excuse

Yep. Its often a handy way to get rid of someone whose face doesn't fit any more. Plus there's also "Go quietly or we'll make the allegations public".

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People hate hot-desking. Google thinks they’ll love hot-Chromebooking

JimC
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Re: No issues

Well exactly. I forget when my team got interchangeable PCs working for the majority of users in the organisation, but it was possibly twenty years ago. Maybe more now I think of it because it was always an aim, even pre Windows. Standard PCs without specialist apps were interchangeable in the 90s. Standard desktop, network delivered apps, data on the server. We were a Novell shop so it was a dozen times easier than a pure MS network.

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'Fibre broadband' should mean glass wires poking into your router, reckons Brit survey

JimC
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Is it important?

As longs as the final run is short enough (yards, not miles) that its not significantly impacting performance does it really matter? It smacks a bit of box ticking to me.

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Open plan offices flop – you talk less, IM more, if forced to flee a cubicle

JimC
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Re: unqualified, stupid or one of those zen starting points?

Collective We.

Haven't you noticed that the whole area of workplace design is riddled with the kind of experts Michael Gove claimed people are fed up with - 'experts' who are spouting off personal opinions and biases as if they were universal truths...

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JimC
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On connecting stuff...

Not my error, but I've seen it more than once. Shared public sector offices between different organisations. both using RFC 1918 addressing, both using OSPF area 0 (reasonable enough with smallish networks) sharing a common wiring system, but with separate hubs/switches for each organisation.

The two networks get patched together. Routing tables suddenly double in size, routing becomes extremely random, default routes go all over the place, chaos ensues.

The first time I saw it was deliberately caused by a devolved departmental "IT manager" who thought it was a good idea to have shared access to files between organisations and didn't see fit to inform anyone. As one of the networks he linked up was NHS this was spectacularly poor thinking.

The other time it was just a careless outsourced engineer who didn't know there were two organisations on the site and said to himself "funny, those two switches aren't connected to the router, I'll just patch them in".

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Snooping passwords from literally hot keys, China's AK-47 laser, malware, and more

JimC
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> and nowhere else

If I had line of sight to an ATM I'd have both visual and infrared cameras trained on it, because the two together would give me a much better chance of getting a semi obscured pin than one or the other.

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Banks told: Look, your systems WILL fail. What is your backup plan?

JimC
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Re: re “Free”. Dream on.

You miss the point Danny. In the UK, if my tax affairs are reasonably simple, I don't have to fill in a tax return at all. No form, no email, no nothing. Just a letter telling me what my tax code will be for the next year that I don't have to do anything with because my employer gets told as well.

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JimC
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re “Free”. Dream on.

- True but...

It means I don't have any income to pay tax on, which in turn keeps my tax affairs so simple I don't have to make a tax return, which is worth a fair few quid to me. If I was paying charges and getting interest life would be more complicated. I don't need complication.

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JimC
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Re: Nice

You can't outsource the problem, only the fun of fixing it.

==========

"our contract guaranteed 7 9s uptime"

"That's nice. Is it helping restore the service?"

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"there are big penalty clauses if they don't deliver"

"That's nice. Is it helping restore the service?"

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"This is listed as no 1 priority system"

"That's nice. But is it *their* no 1 priority?"

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Every step you take: We track you for your own safety, you know?

JimC
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Re: "Safe place"/potential vector

I'm sure that was as obvious to Dabbsy as it was to me, hence the quotes...

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'Toxic' Whitehall power culture fingered for GDS's fall from grace

JimC
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"Hire 50 people under 30 who know what an API is."

Sounds like a guaranteed way to fail.

50 people who have near enough no clue about the business, how it works and doesn't work, how and how not to influence people, all the social and organisational problems that are the main reason IT projects fail...

They might be better off hiring 50 people over 50 who know what an API is. There's not a shortage of them.

But better yet, hire a mix of people of different ages with different talents and specialities, but make damn sure there's a good understanding of the real reasons projects fail. Its rarely the technology per se, technology failures are just a symptom of a project that's already gone badly wrong.

To my mind the biggest problem with huge government IT projects is that they are huge IT projects. Everything has to be huge. There's no sense that you can transform the service just as well with 50 small projects done right (in a framework so they can intersect in the future) as with one large project.

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US Declaration of Independence labeled hate speech by Facebook bots

JimC
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We can expect plenty more stories like this

As the mega advertising corps and their useful idiots try to generate as much propaganda as possible against anything that might control their behaviours...

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IBM fired me because I'm not a millennial, says axed cloud sales star in age discrim court row

JimC
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Re: where people can't afford to live off just one job anymore.

So what's new. At one stage in the early 80s I had a day job, an evening job, a sunday job and was also making a few quid doing gigs on my nights off. I was also getting stopped and searched by the police at least twice a month. Its very hard not to talk about a snowflake generation...

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A £1.3m prize for a plunging share price at BT? Not so fast...

JimC
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Re: Plus ça change

It has changed though. Executive income has massively increased compared to that of of productive workers.

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JimC
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I wonder how long

my next job interview would last if I said that I won't be doing the job to the best of my ability unless you put 200% bonuses on the table...

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UK.gov is not being advised by Google. Repeat. It is not being advised by Google

JimC
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Re: Advice? No thanks.

Plus of course, the ultimate sin, not having a "can-do" attitude when faced with something that is doomed to fail...

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JimC
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Re: He's not being paid?

Well that is the Google model. You offer the service "free" and make a fortune selling the 'customer'...

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Schneier warns of 'perfect storm': Tech is becoming autonomous, and security is garbage

JimC
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RE IT Dept 3, Dumb Fucks 0.

I think not. The IT, which is supposed to be there to help people do their jobs better, went down so badly with the users that 10% of them resigned? Goodness knows Social services IT systems vary from mediocre to dreadful, but even so that's pretty special. And yes, I am aware that one big issue with Social Services IT systems is that they are all too often designed to help the management do their job with no consideration of the staff at all, but that too is a failure of the overall IT delivery.

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JimC
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Re: ahum, dumb fucks ?

No, calling your user base dumb fucks is diagnostic of an industry that has completely lost the plot. If your products aren't fit for the mass population as it exists then by definition they aren't fit for the mass market.

An industry which believes that if its too difficult or too expensive to deliver a satisfactory service whilst still making a tiny minority rich then they should be allowed to deliver rubbish, ignore the law or be socially irresponsible.

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Software engineer fired, shut out of office for three weeks by machine

JimC
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Re: halfway sensible management.

Something of a rare bird.

The scenario of an organisation where middle management do absolutely nothing when a temp's contract expires is utterly familiar. Its very easy to imagine a desire to automate the process of disabling accounts where a contract hasn't been renewed. I've too often seen a hundred or so completely redundant accounts clogging up the system and providing security holes, or maybe even worse the account being left active and used by successive temps, so the details on the account have no relations whatsoever to the person actually using it.

No doubt the system also generated reports of accounts disabled and so on, but its easy to write a report, hard to get any b*****r to read it. Everything that happened to disable accounts and access seems reasonable to me for a company attempting to run a reasonably tight ship. I also bet there was a rehire procedure - its an obvious enough function, but what's the betting no-one ever studied the documentation and they hadn't actually used it?

This highlights one of the troubles of efficient automation, also exemplified by AF447 and the Uber cyclist slaughter - when people rely on efficient automation it can be very hard to work out when its time to switch it off and go back to manual.

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Azure North Europe downed by the curse of the Irish – sunshine

JimC
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> started leaking water...

Something bizarre was going on, and I think we're getting half a story (as ever). I don't see merely high humidity causing that amount of failure. I idly wonder if some sort of local cooling device in the racks had water condensing on it in such quantities it was overflowing into the IT kit.

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Cops: Autonomous Uber driver may have been streaming The Voice before death crash

JimC
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> but you can't just throw

> a driver in a driver seat doing nothing for hours on end and expect them to react as if they had been

> driving for all that time. That is an unreasonable expectation to start with

Its a perfectly reasonable expectation if they are trained and skilled and paid accordingly. We expect exactly that of pilots.

Now I think about it the safety driver should probably be recording a continuous commentary of what's happening on the road and how well the car is reacting to it, which would both keep them alert and provide more feedback on the system. That would require someone who can actually produce a useful evaluation though.

However I imagine what Uber are doing is employing minimum wage peons, and recording video from the car and only examining special events back in the office.

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JimC
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Re: You had just one job!

On what we've heard here it certainly sounds as if the driver bears a heavy responsibility, but the underlying culture needs looking at too.

This being Uber, its a fair bet their 'safety drivers' are minimum wage peons, when actually they need to be highly skilled with very fast reactions because their job is to evaluate when action is needed and take it as late as possible.

Similarly the authorities will need to know if the drivers are just told to go out and sit there. or whether they are specifically briefed before each journey with a test plan.

And ye, as in the above, the authorities will also want to look at to what extent Uber monitor that their safety drivers are doing exactly that, and not sitting their watching videos. Bearing in mind the demands of the role it would not be inappropriate for the drivers to be banned from taking phones with them. Its hard to imagine an aviation test pilot having their phone with them!

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UN's freedom of expression top dog slams European copyright plans

JimC
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> political types legislated pi=3

Except they didn't. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/alabamas-slice-of-pi/

But boy, Google's tame useful idiots are out in force at the moment.

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JimC
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Or to put it another way

Big advertising (my sponsors) think that it will be too much hassle to try and stop theft, so we should make it legal. If the law gets put in place the capability will follow as if by magic. If there are no restrictions the man will always say its impossible to implement. As ever, think Mandy Rice-Davies.

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Scrapping Brit cap on nurses, doctors means more room for IT folk

JimC
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Re:Actually we train a lot in the NHS then they bugger off

That big boy took my sweeties so I'm allowed to steal them off all the little kids??

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