* Posts by Charlie van Becelaere

282 posts • joined 3 May 2007


I'm a crime-fighter, says FamilyTreeDNA boss after being caught giving folks' DNA data to FBI

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Even better than Google.


It's a county east of London, isn't it?"

Yes, and I hear it's the only way ....

Ding dong merrily on high. In Berkeley, the bots are singeing: Self-driving college cooler droid goes up in flames

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Theft

Should be easy - they're not exactly running kit.

I'm just not sure the computer works here – the energy is all wrong

Charlie van Becelaere

Similar story here

back in the 80s I had a (very advanced!) EGA monitor on my desk connected to a Compaq 386 machine.

I remember enjoying the colour pattern on the screen - which had originally been a solid blue - when I realised that the paper-clip holder on top of the monitor was magnetic.

I moved the holder and the pretty colour pattern disappeared. Ah, the joys of CRTs, eh?

Um, I'm not that Gary, American man tells Ryanair after being sent other Gary's flight itinerary

Charlie van Becelaere

I never realised

just how fortunate I am, I suppose.

In fact, I was just lamenting having to type my whole firstname.lastname@domain.com because it's so blasted long.

Now I think I'll stop complaining and count my blessings, one letter at a time.


Galileo's magnifico measurement: 1976 redshift test updated

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: "...ESA's GREAT experiment..."

Fine, but how will you get the sharks with their lasers up to the top of the mountain?

Or were you perhaps planning an underground lair with plenty of shark tank space?

Dell upping its margins again: Precision 5530 laptop will sting you for $13m. Yep, six zeroes

Charlie van Becelaere

At that price

they should at least pay the VAT.

Funnily enough, no, infosec bods aren't mad keen on W. Virginia's vote-by-phone-app plan

Charlie van Becelaere
Black Helicopters

Once again

xkcd is very timely.


Sysadmin trained his offshore replacements, sat back, watched ex-employer's world burn

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Timing is everything

"We didn't get laid off though. That came c.10 years later when an American firm bought us out. I got a H1 visa and went to California to put one of them out of a job as revenge."

One assumes the single downvote is said injured Californian.

Das blinkenlights are back thanks to RPi revival of the PDP-11

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: How noisy are the cooling fans?

"Much like math or engineering students no longer learn the ‘basic’ skill of using a slide rule - because there’s just no point any more."

No point? Hardly.

Keep in mind that batteries die, power grids go down, but slide rules need neither.

Mine got me through a Physics exam when my HP-45 batteries died back in my undergrad days.

John McAfee ‘goes underground’ in motorcade to flee SEC

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Are StargatSG7 and BoB one and the same??

I think not. I am more reminded of the Mall Ninja (just google that - pretty bizarre stuff there too).

Press F to pay respects to the Windows 10 April Update casualties

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: not the most 'exotic' document format.

DJVU files ?

I think I've seen those before....

Microsoft Lean's in: Slimmed-down Windows 10 OS option spotted

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: So, in conclusion...

"Microsoft should have stopped at Windows 7."

I know I have.

Happy having Amazon tiptoe into your house? Why not the car, then? In-trunk delivery – what could go wrong?

Charlie van Becelaere

One can only hope

they encounter the trunk monkey.


BOFH: We know where the bodies are buried

Charlie van Becelaere

Perfect Tale

as we head toward Gin O'Clock. (One needs a few cocktail icons.)

Russian boffins blow up teeny asteroids with tiny laser... to work out how to nuke the real thing

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: what about Tunguska?

Note the problems the Russians have had in getting spacecraft to Mars. Coincidence? I think not.

It's apparently a long-standing problem:


Facebook Messenger ... for who now? Zuck points his digital crack at ever younger kids

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: As a childless curmudgeon.

Yes, but your sister was carrying your books, so at least she was helping.

Self-driving bus in crash just 2 hours after entering public service

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: German Efficiency

On a tangentially related note, my favourite collective noun has always been a flourish of strumpets.

You're welcome.

Seldom used 'i' mangled by baffling autocorrect bug in Apple's iOS 11

Charlie van Becelaere

The most shocking part of this story

was this paragraph:

"We are aware of this autocorrect bug," an Apple spokesperson told The Register via email. "A fix will be released very soon."

Apple told the Reg something? They actually replied to a query?


Giza geezers' muon-geyser visor reveals Great Pyramid's hidden void surpriser

Charlie van Becelaere

What this guy says


The UK's super duper 1,000mph car is being tested in Cornwall

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Beware break failure.

Not to worry, Doctor Syntax; we're just arguing semantics (or orthography).

Lucky Canada. Google chooses Toronto as site of posthuman urban lab

Charlie van Becelaere

The rest of Canada

has long known that Toronto was INhuman; now we know it's posthuman.

When can real-world laws invade augmented reality fantasies? A trial in Milwaukee will decide

Charlie van Becelaere

"Congressional Caucus on Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality Technologies for the 115th Congress."

Shouldn't that be the Caucus on Virtual and Augmented Reality with Mixed and Integrated Technologies (VARMINT)?

I thought Congressfolk always went for acronymous groups and legislation.

That aside, I think I probably agree with the "ban" and most of the various requirements set by the county in question.

Going to Mars may give you cancer, warns doc

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: give the transport ship a magnetosphere

Maybe we need a few monopoles rather than the dipoles of which you are so dismissive. As the Insane Clown Posse (mostly) say: "F-ing magnets, how do they work?"

Feel guilty for scoffing Easter chocolate? Good news: Scientists have made NEGATIVE mass

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: So, they invented...

Either that or they have a working tractor beam.

TRAPPIST-1's planets are quiet. Quiet as the grave, in fact

Charlie van Becelaere


at least there should be some good ale, no?

Zombie webcams? Pah! It's the really BIG 'Things' that scare me

Charlie van Becelaere

Credibility Lost

"if your living room’s funky lighting suddenly flips from red to blue and the Sonos starts playing Justin Bieber on a loop it’s hardly life-changing."

All the other useful information and discussion aside, it's hard to take the author seriously after reading this phrase. Hardly life-changing? Bieber on a loop? Good Grief!

(On a more serious note, "Bieber on a loop" may become my new expostulation.)

The future of Not Reality is a strap-on that talks to my smarting ring

Charlie van Becelaere

Wearable Technology Show

I would have preferred its being called the Wearable Technology Fair, simply for the acronym.

Who do you want to be Who? VOTE for the BBC's next Time Lord

Charlie van Becelaere

John Barrowman

Clearly the time-space continuum would love the chance to see the timelines of the Doctor and Captain Jack intersect in some bizarre fashion, no?

Boffin's anti-worm bot could silence epic Mirai DDoS attack army

Charlie van Becelaere

Unleashing the nematode

This is my new favourite phrase.

Don't make me mad. You wouldn't like me when I get mad. I may unleash the nematode!

Belgian court fines Skype for failing to intercept criminals' calls in 2012

Charlie van Becelaere

All this

as Wallonia flexes her trade muscles (mussels?) and nearly blocks the EU / Canada trade deal.

The Belgians are on the move, world! Prepare for an upgrade to global beer and chocolate standards!

Two new dinosaurs walked from South America to Australia, via Antarctica

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: @Elmer Phud "Is that the old Routemaster or the new one?"

One also assumes the beast had the power of 97 horses. (tip of the had to Flanders and Swann)

Invasion of the virus-addled lightbulbs (and other banana stories)

Charlie van Becelaere

Need some of that tape

"What actually happened was that two monkeys were trained to use neural implants to move a cursor across a computer display to trigger circles as they turned green. It was an easy matter to trick the poor hairy buggers to spell out a line of Shakespeare, gain some valuable public relations and have a laugh in the process."

Hmm. Sounds like someone involved had read The Müller-Fokker Effect by John Sladek.

One of the main characters loses his technical writing job to a dog who's been trained to tell if the shape on a display is a circle or an ellipse (yes, I know a circle is an ellipse) in order to write manuals for whatever kit is being manualed. (It probably wouldn't matter anyway, since nobody ever RTFM, eh?)

SETI's mega alien hunt shovels more data onto IBM's cloud

Charlie van Becelaere


the first message decoded will be, "Watson — Come here — I want to see you."

Telcos hit out against plans to hike their broadband rates

Charlie van Becelaere

One wonders

"He added: 'The Treasury needs to tell the VOA think again.'”

Why the superfluous "again" in that sentence?

152k cameras in 990Gbps record-breaking dual DDoS

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: more technical ineptitude

"Think about it carefully, then comment wisely."

I want that as an option in my Magic 8-ball.

'Second Earth' exoplanet found right under our noses – just four light years away

Charlie van Becelaere

So this is where

the intrepid crew of the Jupiter 2 were likely headed, no? Wagon Train to the Stars indeed!

'Alien megastructure' Tabby's Star: Light is definitely dimming

Charlie van Becelaere
Thumb Up

Re: Pandora's star

"From now on, all Dyson Sphere workers must be ionized."

I was going to ask what the charge would be, but so far it's all positive. Well done, sir!

Lowland Scots plunged into panic by marauding ostrich family

Charlie van Becelaere

Imagine the possibilities ...

Scotch eggs, my friends, Scotch eggs.

Science non-fiction: Newly spotted alien world bathes in glow of three stars

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Am I missing something?

Thank you - I wasn't noticing the double star on the right either.

Brings up both Heinlein (Double Star) and Peter Pan / James T. Kirk ("first star on the right ....")

BOFH: What's your point, caller?

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Yorkshire accent? Excuuuuse me...

and we liked it!

Embrace, extend – and kill. Microsoft discontinues RoboVM

Charlie van Becelaere

Passive tense?

"After looking at the complete landscape for mobile development with Java, the decision has been made to wind down development of RoboVM," he says, carefully using the passive tense.

Surely it's either passive voice or past tense you meant here.

Google's dream city isn't a new idea

Charlie van Becelaere
Black Helicopters

Down the kakistocracy!

The subject line says it all.

ExoMars probe narrowly avoids death, still in peril after rocket snafu

Charlie van Becelaere

Russia, Mars, Why would we expect success?

Even this bizarre site knows better:


Alien studs on dwarf's erection baffle boffins

Charlie van Becelaere

Un mouton, svp?


Seriously, I'm the first to posit this is described in le petit prince?

US rapper slams Earth is Round conspiracy in Twitter marathon

Charlie van Becelaere


Clearly the Earth isn't flat. We all know that it's hollow with openings at the poles. Admiral Byrd was inside - it's an historical fact!

SpaceX makes rocket science look easy: Falcon 9 passes tests

Charlie van Becelaere

SpaceX makes rocket science look easy

Rocket science IS easy - it's rocket engineering that's difficult.

WATER SURPRISE: Liquid found on Mars, says NASA

Charlie van Becelaere

Dark Streaks

"We found the hydrated salts only when the seasonal features were widest, which suggests that either the dark streaks themselves or a process that forms them is the source of the hydration," said Lujendra Ojha of the Georgia Institute of Technology, lead author of a report.

Aha! Dry Canals! Can Tars Tarkas be far behind?

Prof Hawking cracks riddle of black holes – which may be portals to other universes

Charlie van Becelaere

In other words

Zeno was right.

"The information is not stored in the interior of the black hole as one might expect, but in its boundary – the event horizon," Prof Hawking said. "The idea is the super translations are a hologram of the ingoing particles, thus they contain all the information that would otherwise be lost."

See - It never gets all the way there. Half-measures and all that.

Yet another Android app security bug: This time 'everything is affected'

Charlie van Becelaere

Collective Noun

I would suggest a scoff of flaws.

You're welcome.

BARMY bio-boffins are growing DINOSAUR SNOUTS on CHICKENS

Charlie van Becelaere

Re: Send a few to South Florida

Don't forget the leprosy-spreading spitting armadillos!


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