* Posts by Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

11 posts • joined 23 Oct 2008

Sci/Tech quango promises an end to 'events with no women'

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

who wants to be a female panel member at Nesta now?

So now when you see a woman on a panel, you'll wonder if she is there because she has anything to contribute, or was picked just to satisfy the new policy.

If you wanted to undermine female panel members' credibility, is there a better way to do it than this?

LibDems call for gov 'IT skills' office

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner


yeah, that's what we need, a whole new department of civil servants telling other civil servants how to do their jobs better

@whoever-suggested-forking-libreBritain yes, I'm up for it, and if it's really libre then there'll be no bl**dy illiberal democrats neither...

'Leccy price hike: Greens to blame as well as energy biz

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner


Re: "Instead of punching hippies..."

We've been about 5 years away from irreversible catastrophe for my whole life, apparently. When I was a teenager this sh*t scared me; I mean, the argument sounded convincing at the time, and there was the illusion of evidence. 30 years later and I'm still waiting for the sky to fall in. Reckon I'm still scared?

These damn hippies any more? They deserve rather more than the metaphorical punching you accuse Lewis of giving them.

Life (and the maximum post length allowed here, whatever that is) is too short to catalogue the absurdities in full, but someone mentioned "peak oil": this has been predicted for nigh on 90 years now... you *did* get the point of the story of the boy who cried "Wolf!", didn't you..?

To paraphrase Dawkins: "good people do good things, and evil people do evil things, but to get good people to do evil things, you need the Green Movement".

Cutbacks strip speed cameras from Blighty's roads

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

camera fans needn't worry...

We've just had a year of unusually low road accident stats. We can expect that next year the figures will, most likely, go up again to something closer to the long term average.

At that point you can jump up and down and screech about how scrapping cameras has cost lives.

Google "regression to the mean". It's the trick where you wait for something bad to happen -- like too much rain, or too little rain, making the crops fail -- and tell the tribe you can placate the Angry Gods and make it all OK again if they give you lots of virgins. Of course the weather will go back to normal (otherwise it wouldn't be "normal", would it?) like you knew it would, but you're better off with all your new virgins, and best of all, the ripped-off thickos in the rest of the tribe think you're great. This trick works just as well with a spate of nasty accidents, speed cameras, and a fat salary for running the quango that "solves" the problem.

Physicist unmasks 99-year-old mistake in English dictionaries

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

isn't atmospheric pressure also necessary?

Gravity makes the fluid flow out of the longer leg. But why doesn't a vacuum form inside the tube, above the level of the fluid in the upper container? Isn't that because of external atmospheric pressure?

Greenpeace wags finger at eco-laggards

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

thanks greenpeace!

this sort of list is really useful

I can buy gear from the "bad" companies, i.e. the ones that invest time and money into useful features, rather than pandering to ecofascists

Research: Airliners can be more eco-friendly than trains

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

not the first time this has been shown...

Roger Kemp at Lancaster pointed this out about 5 years ago. See http://www.engineering.lancs.ac.uk/research/download/Transport%20Energy%20Consumption%20Discussion%20Paper.pdf

This shows how politicians can get whatever greenwash they want by altering a few assumptions. The high speed rail lines they want to build are as bad (in CO2) as modern aviation (unless of course they power the trains by building nuclear power stations). And as a general rule, 3 or more people travelling together could produce less CO2 by taking a reasonably economical car than the train (see also http://www.co2balance.uk.com/ if you don't want to accept Kemp's figures; try Edinburgh-London by train, or 296 miles by car).

If your pointy haired boss wants to reduce your company carbon footprint from travel, I have a simple 3 point plan:

1: three or more staff travelling together should go by car

2: one or two staff should pick the most crowded train service available, which can easily be found by comparing fares and buying the most expensive ticket

3: if it is not convenient to take a crowded train, staff should fly

Home Office to keep innocent DNA samples

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

"not serious criminal" different to "not minor criminal"???

Can someone explain to me how you define the set of people who haven't committed a serious crime, as being different to the set of people who haven't committed a minor crime?

Conservative US shock-jock to sue Wacky Jacqui

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

well, NOW I've heard of him and read what's he's got to say

Smith's actions have ensured that this guy will never turn up in the UK where, I should think, we'd have all ignored him completely, in the unlikely event any of us had actually noticed he was here.

On the other hand, she has also ensured that we have all now heard of him and gone and read what he has to say on the web. How many thousands or millions more people have now been exposed to his ideas?

Can't see what effect exposure to his ideas has, though. So we know the name of one more f****ing moron in the world; big deal. Is there really anyone out there who doesn't know some people don't like gays muslims and/or immigrants? Or who can't manage to locate these opinions on the web?

New Scientist goes innumerate in 'save the planet' special

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

@David Williams

will you still be "more interested to see people growing rather than economies" when you reach retirement age a pension fund smaller than your IQ?

Europe gives temps same rights as permanent staff

Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner

So much for warm'n'fuzzy good intentions. What's the reality?

A lot of you are comparing having a temp job with a permanent job.

Maybe you should be thinking about a temp job versus no job?


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