* Posts by frank ly

6112 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Amazon coughs $150k to student over lost notes

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Big Brother

Choose the right country (not Oceania)

Since '1984' is now classed as a work in the public domain in Canada, Russia and Australia, perhaps Amazon could have delivered it from a server in one of those countries (I'd suggest Canada as being most convenient since it's a relatively short distance to the north and they mostly speak the same language).

As for Amazon selling it in a market and jurisdiction where there is copyright (the USA), that would be a different matter. Maybe they could give the book away as a 'free gift' and charge a 'packing and delivery' fee to 'cover their costs'?

Oh....wait a minute.....what's this.........it's public domain in Australia (one of those pesky countries that have different laws). So, a quick search on the internet reveals:


CAUTION: it is illegal to download that webpage if you are in a country where the work known as '1984' by George Orwell is still in copyright. USA and UK citizens must not download from that web address.

I'm sure you will all be good citizens and not even consider committing a thoughtcrime.

NASA enlists schoolkids in Moonbase piss-recycler push

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@Hungry Sean re. AC@15:45



What I want to know is, who will own the IP rights to any successful kid-developed techniques?

The NASA website currently makes no mention of ownership of any resulting novel solutions. Will the prize of an all expenses trip be legally equivalent to payment for rights ownership?

The teachers had better get some friendly lawyers involved in the application and submission process.

The North Face trips over The South Butt

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This makes me smile.....

...in the same way that 'itsy bitsy machines' did a long time ago.

Yank slams El Reg 'zio-fruitcake' Playmobil 'crap'

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@mycho re. more than that

"you're also crypto-radishes and your mothers were nebulous firetrucks."

You leave my nebulous firetrucking mother out of this, ya hear me?!

Microsoft rubberstamps Windows XP Mode

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Why oh why?

"..We expect many Windows XP applications to be compatible [with] Windows 7.."

I've put Win-7 RC on my old laptop (replacing XP Pro) and have found that Outlook 2000 will not send mail running under Win-7 RC. Great, it doesn't even run a Microsoft product correctly. (Maybe they want to force me to buy Office 2007?)

No problem, I've started using Thunderbird with the Lightning plug-in (for calendar and tasks) and that works just fine. I suppose the next stage would be to migrate to Open Office and then switch to some flavour of Linux before my Win-7 RC license expires in June 2010.

They could save themselves a lot of problems and have some happy customers by selling Win-XP licenses again.

4 in 10 Brits feel lonely without a daily texting

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@AC 23:55 re. abbreviations

"I always thought LOL stood for Lots of Love"

It does :) .................. ( ROFLMAO )

Ubuntu's Karmic Koala opens its eyes

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@vincent himpe re. fast boot

Isn't what you suggest just a variation on Hibernation. I use Hibernate when I've finished using my (Windows) PC; not to save the state of any applications but just to avoid the oh so long boot time that is needed after a Shut-Down.

As a matter of interest, does Ubuntu (or the other distros) have Hibernate as one of it's turn-off options? I'm thinking about trying it before my Win-7 RC license runs out next June.

UK, France mull Photoshop fakery laws

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Love it

"..to believe in realities that very often, do not exist.."

Oh yes, my reality exists but yours does not, you poor deluded fool.

Does anyone want to start a philosophical discussion about personal realities and how those of politicians often differ markedly from those of the ordinary people who they serve? (Did I get that last bit the right way round?)

Ballmer pumps Windows 7 up to thrifty customers

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I'm Puzzled

"..And because Windows 7 improves productivity, it offers the potential to increase billable time for mobile workers at a rate of nearly $600 per PC..."

Could somebody please explain this claim to me. I've tried to figure out what it really means and I'm just puzzled.

On a related issue, I have Win 7 RC running on my laptop and I'm quite happy with it, but I can't see that it's made me use my laptop any faster than I used to.

Nation's moral guardians snap over 'shag bands'

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@Alien8n re. First I've Heard

"..Kids at the local school here are far too busy sacrificing goats and selling their souls to satan..."

...and they are no damn good at it. When I was their age I'd materialised three major demons and sacrificed my cousin. All these kids do is mooch around in capes trying to look cool, standards have slipped.

US Navy boffins put an end to drought

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@ Brian Miller re. Fresh Water? ....

Does dew form on Astroturf? I'm wondering if an automated dew collector would work, Astroturf-like structure, timed mechanical shaker........you get the idea?

Microsoft apes Google with chillerless* data center

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@Jules 1 re. that's a lot of excess heat

"...why not run heat exchangers and offer the warm water water to neighbouring office blocks or residential areas as free heating?"

I and many other commenters have made that suggestion in the past but suggested selling it. There is no incentive to install capital equipment to provide strangers with free heat. However, it does seem a waste not to use it in some way.

It's probably that the recovery/transfer capital and running costs would not make it worthwhile for the datacentre owners. Also, there is the additional complication of contractual obligations in supplying heat and the control aspects since you would then have an extermal organisation affecting how much heat was taken out of your cooling system.

This has probably all been analysed and considered in the past and since the datacentre operators are looking closely at running costs, it surely must be an idea that is always considered and rejected. We need a datacentre planner to comment on this.

Tech trendsetters reveal all

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Oh Dear

Pass the sick bag....the one made from recycled carrier bags with the faux art-deco pattern on it.

Trucker prangs rig while cracking one off

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@Sarah Bee re. Re: impressive

"...say hi to your monster at inappropriate moments. "

I assume this 'monster' of which you speak is a metaphysical/conceptual thing, like 'personal demons'.....

Archos punts 9-inch Windows 7 tablet PC

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@Dimensio re. portrait mode

I tried irotate (and have tried others), they work in that they rotate the screen image through 90 degrees.

However, they don't rotate the trackpad action through 90 degrees so you can't use the trackpad unless you do some serious mental gymnastics. Even the EEE-PC with it's built in display driver portrait mode does not 'flip' the trackpad to match the sceen. So you are stuck with using a keyboard that is effectively twisted through 90 degrees. It hurts my eyes and brain.

iRex waggles ebook at US

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@ Steven Knox and M.White

After a long period of cynicism about e-book readers and being happy to read e-books on my netbook and laptop, I took the plunge and bought a Sony PRS-505 for £150 in the UK. I find it to be amazingly good for what it is and what it cost me.

I can find faults with it as I can with everything but they are 'chasing after perfection' things that can be adapted to.

As an example, the screen appearance (purely when reading, when it is in front of you) is nowhere near as good as my 15" laptop using the Mobipocket reader application which gives me a high contrast b/w page with smooth scroll and enormous adjustment of font and text size. But then again, can a paperback book do that? (Clue:- no, but the Sony reader can adjust font to three different sizes) Can I carry my laptop in my pocket and easily use it on a train?.........etc

You can do lots of nitpicking of that nature on the ergonomics but it's all nitpicking. For the first time in many years I've read a book in bed using the Sony reader and it is small/light/convenient enough to do that.

I find that the battery lasts for 2 weeks with my medium usage even with me sending it into sleep mode (not turning it off) so that it starts up at the same page I was last reading. I've got 140 free books on it (100 included free with the purchase) and have room for hundreds more.

Also, I can make my own .pdf e-books, including pictures/diagrams and transfer them to the Sony reader (for detailed, colour tinted maps, the results are not good but with a suitable image, it looks very good). It's very flexible and very usable - I've become a fan, i admit it.

I download non-DRM e-books at home on my computer then do a simple transfer to the reader, I'm working my way through all the out-of-copyright classics that I didn't read when I was younger. The issue of wireless phone links is a big one and I think is the way that the manufacturers want to get themselves latched onto many little income streams in the future. Personally I would not want to be the teat that they suck on and am happy to use my laptop at home or my netbook/3G-dongle to download and transfer reading material for the reader (simple USB cable link that also does device charging).

If you like reading books away from home, the e-book readers are very good for the job. If you want to download content onto an e-book directly then I don't think the market and services are mature enough to be worth trying. Maybe one day there will be an e-book that you can put a SIM card into but it will be expensive since it wont give guaranteed income stream to the manufacturer.

If you 'know' computers and the internet (the mass market do not), you can have a very usable and flexible reader right now with lots of content to try and buy (or get free stuff easily).

The second hand prices on e-bay for the Sony PRS-505 are very high so you can get one there and resell it if you don't like it.

Hyatt signs up to EU binding corporate rules for data transfers

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Trust Us

"Once you've been through the process, at least you have enjoy freedom to transfer data within a group,"

Who checks that compliance is maintained and that the procedures are not broken? Maybe it's a 'self regulation' thing, hahahah.

Futuristic head-mounted PC launching in 2010

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Early Days

"...Since Golden-i is a head-mounted unit there’s little hope of it featuring, say, a 500GB SSD..."

Indeed, but you could use a Wi-Fi or UWB link to a computing/comms/storage unit that you slip into a jacket pocket.

Then you advance to wearing a backpack with bigger battery, satellite coms, flip-out head-tracking gesture-activated plasma guns, etc. (You see where I'm heading with this?). The next stage is a lightweight ablative armour suit so why aren't DARPA working on this?

Microsoft accused of 'ulterior motive' in Linux patent sale

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Free the patent?

Why is is necessary to hold and 'guard' these patents? If the current owner really wants the world to benefit, can they not make a public statement that they 'hereby release and relinquish all rights in these patents to the people of the world'? Yes, I know it's an idealistic and perhaps naive choice of words and it would require an army of lawyers to draft a 50 page document to do it, but it should be possible.

Thieves help selves to PCs from Office for Digital Inclusion

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This is terrible

This is a terrible thing to happen - so why am I laughing?

Website exposes sensitive details on military personnel

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WTF ^2

All I know about SQL is what I've read on various websites (I'm not into databases) and all I know about designing websites is what I've managed to scrape together and bodge up by simple playing around (I can make you a home page with a few pictures).

But (FFS) even I know what the SQL injection vulnerability is, how it works and how to fix it (in principle). If a professional developer (gets paid to do that job) or a company produces a website that has this vulnerability then they are guilty of gross negligence and should have the arse sued off them and be liable for all resulting damages due to this weakness in their product.

Sarko boosts standing by standing in front of dwarves

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@AC14:08 re WTF?

"Why do small minded cretins in the British press think that it is ok to mock another country's president on the basis of his/her personal appearance?"

His personal appearance is irrelevant. It's his behaviour (or the behaviour of his entourage) that is cause for amusement and scorn. (Notice that I used four words of french origin there? We don't have a problem with the French, they made some of the tastiest words in the world and some fairly decent wine).

"I don't see Le Figaro, Le Monde or Liberation running front page features making a mockery of Prince Charles's big ears or Gordon Browns double chin!"

No, the UK press does it for them, but not on the front page, they're not important enough.

Lord Mandelson wants mobile internet fix

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@Craig Roberts re. @Gall.@Frank ly

It's ok Craig, I was in knee-jerk pedantry mode (I'm good at that). As for your other points, I can argue for and against (and so can you) but this is not the place.

"..It is due to this, where were almost promised and election which was then snatched away from us when he realised he would lose, that I won't give it a rest..."

It's like pulling oar in a slave galley. You've been signed up for the full five years so stay bent over and get used to it - you have no say in this.

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@Craig Roberts re. A challenge...

".No-one elected Brown as Prime Minister.."

The Labour party executive elected Gordon Brown as leader of the party and hence he is the de-facto Prime Minister, since Labour are in power.

The exact same process and result has occurred in the past for Tony Blair and all other previous Prime Ministers (except that Conservative Prime Ministers were elected by an executive committee of the Conservative party).

We don't elect a Prime Minister in this country. You may be getting confused with the American procedure where the people elect a President.

NY residents sue for $100m over phone masts

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How Quaint

They still have telephone cables running along the street suspended from wooden poles. Those ugly brown boxes totally ruin the olde worlde charm of the place.

SMBs unimpressed by netbooks

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Docking Stations for Netbooks.....

....are not necessary. At home, my EEE-901 (XP) sits with its lid closed, under a 17" LCD monitor and pumps out a 1280x1024 signal through the VGA connector. It autodetects the external monitor (which it refers to as CRT) and if you press the Fn-F5 key you can cycle through the different twin-screen options. The only option I use is 'CRT only' so I can operate with the netbook lid closed.

A little wireless dongle plugs into the right hand USB connector and talks to the wireless keyboard and optical mouse (£20 from PC World) which are a much better experience than the netbook keyboard and mouse. An external DVD writer connects to the left hand USB connector. With its Wi-Fi active, it is then on my home network and has access to my NAS box and the internet.

Alternatively, it sits in the living room under my LCD-TV which has a VGA input and it plays full screen videos (using VLC media player) from my NAS box onto my TV. (Reading folder contents and file lists on a TV screen from the other side of the living room is not something you want to do much of though).

How easy is that?

Japanese boffin boasts electrospray OLEDs

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@Bad Beaver re. OLED sprayed me

Yes, but it's got integrated Wi-Fi, it lights up and shows new release movies on your chest. Now stand still and stop whining while we watch it.

Intel says data centers much too cold

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Recommendation Confusion

"..But we do know that we can meet the requirements of ASHRAE in this context..."

"..he does suggest that ASHRAE's guidelines are sound..."

I'm sure that ASHRAE are a well run and highly professional organisation and if I wanted any advice on the design, operation and safe running of any kind of cooling system then they would be the first people I'd call on.

However, I fail to see how they can be the 'authority' for the maximum recommended temperature of air inflow into a datacentre as well as other aspects of recommended temperatures for cooled equipment. Surely these figures are the responsibility of the designers and manufacturers of the equipment?

(Note, by this I do not include any legal requirements associated with human safety and comfort, these are covered by legislation that ASHRAE would 'pass on' in other operating recommendations).

Fujitsu-Siemens pulls a Sony with Windows 7 virtual switch off

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@ The Infamous Grouse re. XP Mode is nasty

"..If your only reason for choosing Windows 7 Professional is the XP Mode .."

In that case, why not install a 'bare minimum' Linux on your PC, run Virtual Box on that and create your properly licensed XP environment that way? Or have I missed something?

Office 2010 to come loaded with WGA's bastard child

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@Fred Flintstone

"...Outlook is the only remaining bit of the Office suite I use, forcibly. .."

Try Thunderbird with the Lightning plug-in. It seems to do everything that Outlook does and it's free. I started using it when I discovered that Win7 RC does not let Outlook 2000 send e-mail.

Thunderbird installed (with Lightning for calendar and tasks), problem sorted.

Sony takes on the Kindle

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I liked the 505 so much that I bought one

I was sceptical about e-book readers and said so in various El-Reg comments. I was happy using my laptop and netbook with the free MobiPocket reader application and all the free e-books I could want from Gutenberg.org and other places.

Then I saw a Sony PRS-505 in Curry's and played with it, it was very nice indeed. I bought it from play.com at £150 (Jersey company, no VAT charge) and it arrived 3 days after my internet order was placed. Customs hadn't intercepted it and slapped any import duty on it so maybe I was lucky.

It is a pleasure to use and to read and with the free Calibre e-book management application you can load it with just about anything. I can load compatible files onto my 4GB SD card and plug it in and have them appear in the list of books. I can make my own books with text and pictures using the free PrimoPDF .pdf generator authoring them in Word. It's a very nice bit of kit.

The only 'downside' is that it's a bit slow at the menu level GUI response and doing any USB comms and any needed internal conversion. Having said that, it's a reader, for reading, not for messing about with. It also lists and plays any .mp3 files you put on there and you can listen to music as you read, if you want that.

With a touch screen, I'd want to look very carefully at it to see if the screen had an effect on contrast and if it introduced any blurring of the text. Has anybody seen one to be able to comment on this?

Multitaskers: suckers for irrelevancy, easily distracted

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@Stef 4 re.@Bollox

"..doodling a picture of President Bush riding a kangaroo through congress is multitasking..."

Did you do that? I'd love to see it if you can post it somewhere.

Not now darling I'm twirping

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I could feel the IQ points being sucked out of me as I read it. Eeeeew ! (I'm worried for Verity if she actively joins in with this sort of thing).

Aussie birds 'desperate to copulate with brainy males'

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It's obvious really....

"..it's hard to tell "whether [Australian] females really are selecting mates on the basis of intelligence or on something such as a sexy dance".




Apple admits iPhone apps not suitable for business

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A thought...

"...why anyone would want a Sales Customer Relationship Manager for their personal, non-commercial, use..."

"..who is buying "Ring It Up, Point Of Sale" for their personal use.."

Drug dealers? Prostitutes? Just a thought, I'm going with my imagination here. (I assume that drug dealers and prostitutes don't register with the Inland Revenue or with Customs and Excise, so they don't need VAT receipts anyway)

Scientists ponder rules and ethics of robo helpers

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@AC 23:45 re. Cobblers......

"......scientists (in particular physicists) should avoid attempting to talk about Philosophy..."

Why physicists in particular? Is this a personal opinion or have studies been done which support your view?

Windows XP customers positive but split on Windows 7

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Happy XP Pro User

I've been happy with XP Pro for six years now, running on my six year old Acer Travelmate 8000. I decided to try Win 7 RC in July (using a spare 2.5" hard drive from my collection of old 2.5" drives).

It will not install if the cluster size is greater than 1K as I found out by experimentation since it did not give any meaningful error messages. If I formatted the drive using its install- time facilities, it then further refused to install with no meaningful error messages. The hard drive was then unreadable using Partition Magic under XP (using my desktop) with a PM error stating that the drive was 'Bad'. I had to use a different utility to recognise the drive and reformat it (and reduce the cluster size).

Eventually, I installed Win 7 on my laptop. I was surprised at how well it ran after I turned off all the eye-candy. It does max out my CPU if I run VLC media player at full screen but with a six year old Acer Travelmate that is not surprising really. Win 7 RC will not let you undock toolbars from the taskbar which was a downer for me because I like my pop-out toolbars around the edges of my screen for quick and easy access to data folders and programs. I can work around that and have done, I am flexible even if Win 7 is not.

Zone Alarm firewall will not run under Win 7 but I'm sure they'll fix that soon (?) and I found that the free 'Sphinx' firewall installs and runs well in WIn 7. A few other minor utility programs I have will not run properly and XP compatibility mode would not be any good with my old laptop CPU (which is to be expected).

Home networking is a pig to set up and the Win 7 GUI is some kind of 'Networks 'R' Us' confection that makes you want to hit it with a hammer. It insists on you providing a user name and password for the network device even though the network device (an old NAS drive) didn't have one set up and did not need one under XP. Actually, the password is the networking 'homegroup' password that Win 7 itself initially gives you (wtf?!) and the 'username' was eventually sorted out by me setting up a named group account on the NAS drive itself. I won't go on........it was a nightmare but I'm a stubborn bastard and I eventually made it all work. I even got it to share files with my XP netbook but I can't get it to share files with my XP desktop - sod it. I wont tell you what happened when I tried swapping to a cabled connection to my router instead of using wireless (for transfer speed reasons) because If I did I'd start some serious swearing. (Bear in mind that I've done all this before with XP Pro - no problem).

Outlook 2000 does not work under Win 7, you can read e-mail but can't send it due to a strange address book error (I wasn't trying to use the address book!). That's ok though because I tried Thunderbird with the Lightning plug in and that installed and works like a dream. It may be a good idea for me to try Open Office next and see how I get along with that. Thank you Microsoft, for starting to wean me away from Microsoft Office.

After the initial frustration and headbanging, it's a reasonable user experience and seems to be very stable as long as you don't try to make any changes on your LAN. I will carry on using it until the RC license runs out in June 2010, then I'll go back to using my trusty old XP Pro hard drive (which I have cloned in case it dies). If my laptop dies, I'll get a new one with Win 7 and will accept and work around its peculiarities; I still have my XP Pro desktop for serious work.

Beer, because you need one after trying to install and set up Win 7.

Shop risks legal action for posting 'shoplifter' CCTV online

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@ NHS IT guy re. Hmmmmm

"I don't know about the ethics of this one, but the first shoplifter is hot - *would*"

You fancy the muscular crop haired man wearing baggy shorts and sandals...........ok, I don't have a problem with that, just wondering why you want to tell us about it.......and if you think we care.

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Sauce for the goose

I genuinely believe that the managing director of T.J Morris Ltd is a paedophile. So I'm sure he'll have no problem with me putting his picture up around town with a statement to that effect. If he disagrees with me then he can come to see me and we can go through the evidence that I have.

If he can convince me that he is not a paedophile then I'll take the pictures down. That sounds fair and reasonable to me.

Wireless power gets lovely shiny logo

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@AC 14:40 re. @frank ly

"..Readers, don't take my word for it, try it with a couple of coils on a ferrite rod, set up as a matched sending and receiving pair of LC tuned circuits..."

Aaawww, it's years since I did that sort of thing. Maybe I'll get my soldering iron out this weekend and see if I can still do it. I'm sure I've got a multimeter somewhere in the garage, I wonder if I can find it.

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Electric Toothbrushes

"..Wireless charging is already in use, mainly for electric toothbrushes ...."

As far as I'm aware, those electric toothbrushes are charged by what is effectively an air-gap transformer. This gives you a transformer with a very low power efficiency but it has the obvious advantage that the two halves can be easily separated. For the power requirements of an electric toothbrush, that will spend most of its time charging at a low power level, this low efficiency does not matter. Any separation of the two parts, greater than a few millimetres will massively reduce the power transfer efficiency or prevent power transfer altogether.

'Wireless Power' is a totally different thing that involves transmitting usefully large amounts of power across large open distances at a high (or acceptably high) power transfer efficiency. This supposedly involves 'resonant fields' of some kind.

I've always been suspicious of this 'wireless power' as a serious technology and do hope that serious technical articles will not use the example of modern electric toothbrushes as some kind of proof of it actually working in a useful way.

Lad passes gruelling 'getting on bus' test

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Lowering of Standards

I've just had a look at: http://store.aqa.org.uk/qual/uas/units/pdf/87313.PDF

This is the 'test' for the ability to make a cup of tea, nowadays. When I was 12 years old I was making tea for all my family, in a proper teapot using real loose leaf tea with water that boiled on a gas ring and had to be turned off by hand when it boiled.

Nowadays, they use an automatic electric kettle, they make one cup of tea in the cup using a tea bag and they add milk without asking if milk is required (but at least they check if sugar is required).

At this rate, in 10-15 years time, the only cups of tea available will be from vending machines. Sighs, grumbles, world going to hell in a handcart, etc.

Tourist magnet blows off Speedo-wearing men

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You're all missing the point

According to the article (I read it all, did you?) it seems that the Alton Towers people have objections to the sight of pubic hair. (That's the _evil_ hair which condemns you to hell if you see it or show it). The humorous clue is in the references to compulsory bikini line waxing.

For those men (and unfortunate women) who's 'bush' gives the appearance of extending up to their navel and beyond, it seems that they'd be required to wear dungarees to be allowed in the pools. The key question would be, 'how do they decide what is pubic hair and what is ordinary body hair?'

Boffins test cancer-stinging 'nano-bee' swarms in mice

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"....because in high enough concentration it can destroy any cell it comes into contact with, .."

This is true for salt, sugar, and just about any soluble substance you care to name (but maybe not water).

Did I misunderstand something there?

Man blames cat for child porn downloads

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My grandmother's cat collected her pension for two months after she had died and then managed to put the blame on my uncle. They are devious creatures.

Rogue iPhone app stores raking mazuma

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@Someone re, Re: Jailbroken

"..The app hasn’t been freed from jail.."

Indeed not, so the verb and all directly derived 'words' should not be used. I think that to correctly indicate the 'figurative' nature of this use, the correct word is 'jailbrokenesque'.

Researcher: Twitter attack targeted anti-Russian blogger

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@Moss Icely Spaceport re. Twitter down?

"And 30 million people DIDN'T die!"

No, but they were severely traumatised and will need to spend lots of time tweeting about it as part of their recovery process. Be kind to them, for a little while.

Feds seek $566m from man in online gambling case

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gambling..... a mug's game?

"...used to funnel money to US-based customers of online gambling sites,..."

I thought that money was funneled _from_ customers of gambling enterprises (in general).

Maybe this was the payout channel and their and stakes went via a different route.

Copyright cops raid Filesoup admin

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"According to the man, the seized items have been handed by police to FACT for computer forensics investigation."

The police gave the 'evidence ' to a private organisation who stand to benefit from a successful prosecution?!?

How on earth can they be allowed to do that and how could any supposed FACT findngs be believed in court?

Note to the police: I accuse the FACT directors of using sneaky internet based methods to steal private and confidential files from my computer. Please arrest them, question them and confiscate their computers. Send their computers to me and I'll examine them to see if they contain copies of any of my private data files. If they do, I'll let you know.

Sony widens its e-bookshelf

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@various re.@frank ly ....and more

I admit that I've not yet seen an e-ink display and I'm also sure that when I do, I'll be impressed by the quality of the display _for reading monochrome 'storybook' text_. At the moment, the only reason I can see for one is if I do intend to go away somewhere and want to take lots of recreational reading with me. For me, this will probably not arise though I do realise that for many people it is a favorite pastime and that they will love these devices for that reason.

I have tried to buy e-books from online stores and been locked out of the US sites; then seen the doubled prices on the UK bookstore sites (gouging b******s). I can't imagine that I'd want to pay for a wireless subscription that offers me 'easier' download from a particular online store and offers subscriptions to 'magazines' when there is a ton of stuff on the internet for free. As goggyturk said, it's clever but it's a sideline device. I'll stick with free reading material and my flexible usage netbook for a long time.

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