* Posts by J.G.Harston

1816 posts • joined 4 Mar 2009

Chap joins elite support team, solves what no one else can. Is he invited back? Is he f**k

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A few months ago the work I was doing kept crashing Excel. I'd gone from processing the electoral register of a single ward of 3,500 people to a whole constituency of 72,000 people..... Cue installation of OpenOffice.

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Re: not neccessarily very good at brown-nosing...

"The real issue is that "ambition" is defined as "wanting to be a manager.""

I've never understood that attitude. If I wanted to be a manager I'd have bloody well applied to be a manager, not a do-er.

Dead LAN's hand: IT staff 'locked out' of data center's core switch after the only bloke who could log into it dies

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The external IT Auditor is an external organisation. They would only ever approach our offices if both Clerk and Deputy Clerk fell under the same bus at the same time. And even if all the parish councillors went under the bus as well resulting in no executive authority, things would devolve up to the district council. If the district council was wiped off the earth, there's be other more important things to worry about.

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We've been going through this sort of thing with our succession planning for our parish council (2.5 employees!). The God passwords are written down and stored in a safe, the key to which are held (locked up) by the two Responsible Officers and the (external) IT Auditor. If all three manage to die at the same time - especially something that takes the IT Auditor as well - it will probably be due to an event causing more concerns than parish council continuity. ;)

Google takes a page from Microsoft of old and revives browser ballot on Android

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My car comes with a radio, why should I have to decide what sort of radio it has, I don't know anything about radios, the manufacturer should just bloody put a damn radio in the damn car.

College student with 'visions of writing super-cool scripts' almost wipes out faculty's entire system

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Re: Live system - Whilst training

That's why I usually put paths in quotes in prompts, so you get something like:

Delete directory '/user/fred'? (Y/N)

Delete directory '' (Y/N)

What made a super high-tech home in Victorian England? Hydroelectric witchery, for starters

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Re: Archimedes

Yes, you can use a screw in the opposite configuration to extract power, we have one just outside town:


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turning the lamp off would mean lifting an electrified vase

Two thoughts:

the vase would be the return side of the circuit, so there may well be zero potential between the floor you're standing on and the vase you're lifting.

a gentleman does not extinguish his own lamps, the butler would extinguish the lamp, and any decent butler would be wearing (nonconductive) gloves.

Brit prisoners to be kept on the straight and narrow with JavaScript and CSS

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So the route out of IT drudgery and into a proper programming job is a spell in chokey? Is there a cow-creamer to hand?

All good, leave it with you...? Chap is roped into tech support role for clueless customer

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Re: Hmmm

Makes you wonder how many ParcelForce et al staff are being demanded to do IT work.

You've delivered my drive/toner/cooker/boiler/carburetta, I demand that you now install it!!!!

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Re: While I got you here

* I've come to update Fred's computer

* Ooo, that was quick, Jim's only just put a request in

* No, Fred not Jim

* Fred's not here, can you do Jim's, and then do Fred's when he gets back?

On that occasion I phoned Dispatch and confirmed it would be booked as two call-outs, and I'd be paid for two call-outs.

Facebook blames 'server config change' for 14-hour outage. Someone run that through the universal liar translator

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Re: "The Post Office" couldn't go down

Ok, taking that at face value, it was very difficult for "the phone system" to go down. Your line might go down, that doesn't take out the whole network. Your local switch might go down, that doesn't take out the whole network. Your local exchange might go down (happened to me, local exchange caught fire), that doesn't take down the whole network. The Soviet Union could decide to switch off their whole telephone system, that doesn't take the global network down.

Your comparison is a telco wirer swapping over a couple of banks of Strowgers in Little Troddingham on the Stow, and the ENTIRE WORLD goes telephonically dark.

J.G.Harston Silver badge

Re: Not sure the comparison is valid

Yes, but "The Post Office" couldn't go down. The Post Office outlet at the end of the road could go down, go to another one. The sorting office in your district could go down, the deliveries would be diverted to other sorting offices. The deliveries in Inverness could be held up by snow, that doesn't stop the deliveries in Plymouth.

Tech sector risks GM-crops-like crackdown if it doesn't win back trust, warns privacy watchdog

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Re: Yup...

Ta. 24 hours later I'm still getting "offline for maintanance". Wonder how the youngseters are coping.

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Talking of Facebook, has it crashed? I've been getting "Facebook is offline for maintanance" for the last five hours.

The Handmaid's Tale or Man-made Fail? Exposed DB of 'BreedReady' women probably not as bad as it sounds

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It could even just be the neutral "of child-bearing age". My (admitted very bad) Cantonese give me 育齡期, which if you read as though it is Japanese is "breeding period".

UK peers suggest one big 'Digital Authority' to watch the tech watchers, tighten up regulation

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I'll believe it when I see the job adverts - and *not* based in London.

Dear Britain's mast-fearing Nimbys: Do you want your phone to work or not?

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A couple of years ago I picked up a RTA'd motorist on Snake Pass and gave him a lift to Glossop so he could get a signal to report it, then gave him a lift back to wait for the response to turn up. My biggest gripe was the 999 service wouldn't take SK 090 929 as the location and insisted I describe the location.

(My line manager was perfectly happy with me being an hour late for work considering the circumstances.)

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I live a long way from urban infrastructure and have no urban infrastructure wah wah!

On my way home there's about 15 minutes where the car radio goes silent, it's a lovely reminder that there are properly isolated bits of the countryside out there.

Unless you want your wine bar to look like a brothel, purple curtains are a no-no apparently

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House of ill repute?

Is there a building code violation? A drainage issue? A surveying error?

Hipster whines at tech mag for using his pic to imply hipsters look the same, discovers pic was of an entirely different hipster

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Re: The man in the mirror

I was shocked to see myself on the front cover of the first issue of Your Spectrum.

Ah, this military GPS system looks shoddy but expensive. Shall we try to break it?

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Re: Sorry, but...

They should have documented it all, then it would have been fine.

New kit SIR! Never used before SIR! Used initiative SIR! Did some sensible pre-deployment tests SIR! All written down here SIR!

UK tech has a month left to bare gender pay gaps, but less than a fifth of firms have ponied up

J.G.Harston Silver badge

This is a not-doing-paid-work pay gap. Women are more likely to not work than men. This has got worse in recent years with flexible working, as women are more likely to flexibly work less than men are. The solution? Make it illegal for women to take time off work. Simples.

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Re: It's not a gender pay gap

It's not even a primary childcare giver's pay gap. It's a not-doing-paid-work pay gap.

If you do 20 hours work a week, doing exactly the same work as your colleague doing 40 hours work a week, you will shock horror get paid less. If you want to get PAID the same, you need to DO the same.

J.G.Harston Silver badge

Re: This is the "pay gap" that ignores the job title right?

Almost a decade? Is it 1985 already?

Why are there never free power sockets when my Y-fronts need charging?

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Re: An inch too short?

Argh! And wall-warts that are upside-down! BS1363 requires the cable to leave at the *BOTTOM*.

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Weird guys tugging his crotch

What really gets me is the people walking down the road talking to hidden phones, not realising they look for all the world like a care-in-the-community escapee talking to their invisble demons.

Boffins put the FUN into fungus by rigging yeast to squirt out the active ingredients in cannabis

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Re: And that's how civilisation will end

The He-La cell line is notorious for breaking out of sealed containers and contaminating everything else in the lab it's in, and it's proper cell-sized! Yeast cells are 100-ish times smaller.

Age checks for online pr0n? I've never heard of it but it sounds like a good idea – survey

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Re: ISP level

So, you just need to verify that it is you, the contractee, who is using the connection.

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"more than one third adult content or marketed as porn".

Ok, so don't market it as porn, and state that your content is not your definition of "adult content", and you're exempt. Hamster? It's a pet discussion site.

I say, that sucks! Crooks are harnessing hoovers to clean out parking meters in Chelsea

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Plus: get rid of the "how long are you parking for?" insanity. I DON'T KNOW!!!! I'll known when I *get* *back*.

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Unless they're using them as blunt objects to smash the payment machines, I very much doubt they're using Hoovers. You'd need a cylinder vacuum cleaner to do that sort of stuff.

US kids apparently talking like Peppa Pig... How about US lawmakers watching Doctor Who?

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Re: Dr Who Theme

"Daphne Blake" Oram? That's bizarre.

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Re: About time

Yer wot? Sesame Street never aired in the UK. The British broadcasters looked at promo tapes and decided it was too provincial to be suitable for UK kids.

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Re: Be afraid. Be VERY afraid!

Weird how the Shaun The Sheep movie was released in the Year of the Sheep, and the Peppa Pig movie is being released in the Year of the Pig. It makes you wonder who they think their target audience is. ;)

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Bleep and Booster

Shamelessly ripped off by Futurama.

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Pah! The One True Way to pronounce "scone" has two syllables.

IBM so very, very sorry after jobs page casually asks hopefuls: Are you white, black... or yellow?

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Indigenous? Indigenous to where? I'm indigenous to Yorkshire.

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Re: Big Blue ?

Blue is Beautiful. Blue is Best.

I'm Blue, I'm Beautiful, I'm Best!

Linus Torvalds pulls pin, tosses in grenade: x86 won, forget about Arm in server CPUs, says Linux kernel supremo

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I have four Arm-based computers here on which I toil away on producing, testing and documenting code.

Data breach rumours abound as UK Labour Party locks down access to member databases

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Re: Problem Solved...

Tax all foreigners living in foreign countries.

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The electoral register solely has your name and address, so it's fairly beneign in content, and election candidates *need* to have the electoral register in order to perform their requirements of being an election candidate - they need to know who are elegible to vote for them, and in order to become a candidate who can nominate them.

UK.gov pens Carillion-proofing playbook: Let's run pilots of work before we outsource it, check firms' finances

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UK.gov ?

I know our politicians likes climbing up Trump's backside, but we are not a department of the US government yet.

What's in a name? Quite a bit when it's the most hated abbreviation of 2018 (GDPR, of course)

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Well, the International Secret Intelligence Service had to change business....

Register Lecture: Right to strike when your boss sells AI to the military?

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It's the owners of a company that have the right to decide what a company does - that's what the ownership of private property means. If the workers want to direct the actions of the company they are at perfect liberty to buy it. If the workers do not like producing the products the company produces, they are at perfect liberty to cease working for the company.

WWW = Woeful, er, winternet wendering? CERN browser rebuilt after 30 years barely recognizes modern web

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Re: Works fine...

They don't resolve, though. I can fetch pages from my website via the 'Fetch document' menu item (and they display quite well), but following any links gives 'This site has caused a finangle' error.

What did turbonerds do before the internet? 41 years ago, a load of BBS

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A couple of years ago I rediscovered the artwork for the first leaflets I ever did, on my Spectrum and Alphacom printer!

Techie in need of a doorstop picks up 'chunk of metal' – only to find out it's rather pricey

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Re: Have you ever heard a story about something you did told second-hand?

I went searching for the lyrics to the Porterhouse Blue college song. The search lead me back to my own website where I'd transcribed and translated it ten years ago.

Dratted hipster UX designers stole my corporate app

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Re: I would like to show you my bank site redesign...

My bank's online site changed from a nice neat ledger layout of accounts, transactions, and amounts, y'know, 'cos it's finances and numbers and wotnot, and changed to the modern faddish finger-painting nonsense.

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Re: or an un-improvable legacy interface designed a thousand years ago by a goblin

"so why must we have a responsive design and a 1/3 of the screen blank??"

Because humans (y'know, the ones who you expect to be using your system) read by difting their eyes *downwards*, ****NOT**** by draggin them acroooosssssssssssssss the screeeeeeeennnnn to the far edge then

bang! across back to the left then draaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaggggggggggggggginnngggggg across again thn

bang! back to the left then.... etc..

In order for your content to enter your user's brains on a wide screen it ****NEEDS**** to be 1/3 or more blank. cf elReg's crud makeover that does this, forcing me to select 'Thread' every time I attempt to read a thread.

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