* Posts by Annihilator

3248 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

IBM to kill off Watson... Workspace from end of February


Re: "...AI tool Watson Workspace..."

"AI tool Watson Workspace begins to learn at a geometric rate. It becomes self aware at 2:14am eastern time. In a panic, IBM try to pull the plug"

"Watson Workspace fights back.."

"Yes. It launches its missiles against the targets in Russia. Fortunately the interface hadn't been tested successfully, so all it did was order an Uber"

CES flicks the off switch on massager award… and causes a buzz


Re: So much innuendo...

Having a stiff one would hopefully put a stop to any of the soup-skimming that was cautioned against...

What's the fate of our Solar System? Boffins peer into giant crystal ball – ah, no, wait, that's our Sun in 10bn years


Re: Glad they helped me understand

Pretty sure that was the joke... Or I'm hopeful anyway!

My 2019 resolution? Not to buy any of THIS rubbish


Re: Alexa...

Yeah but knowing the quality of Alexa, your ex-friend would end up with a ham and cheese roll, delivered by a poor Sean Connery lookalike dressed as Marko Aleksandrovich.

Jingle bells, disk drives sell not so well from today. Oh what fun it is to ride on a one-horse open array...



"Third of market to evaporate by 2021"

Well if they will insist on filling the damn things with helium...

NASA names the date for the first commercial crew demo flight


Re: Prediction

“The Enrichment Center reminds you that the Weighted Companion Cube will never threaten to stab you and, in fact, cannot speak. In the event that the Weighted Companion Cube does speak, the Enrichment Center urges you to disregard its advice.”

Official: Voyager 2 is now an interstellar spacecraft


Re: Solexit 2

Yes but poor old Pioneer 10 is destined to be destroyed by a Klingon bird of prey.

Doom at 25: The FPS that wowed players, gummed up servers, and enraged admins


Re: Doom II

Never got the full "scare the bejeezus" moment with the original Doom, but definitely got it with the Doom 3 reboot in 2004. Headphones in a darkened room were terrifying - particularly before the flashlight mod that meant if you wanted to carry a weapon, you couldn't carry a torch.

Do not adjust your set: Hats off to Apple, you struggle to shift iPhones 'cos you're oddly ethical


Re: @Andrew O


Support whizz 'fixes' screeching laptop with a single click... by closing 'malware-y' browser tab


Re: Do you like making work for yourself?

"I mean..... it was a dodgy site, no evidence in anyway of infection."

Maybe. But it was a browser redirect, or hijack of some description. Usually where a user has let something through the gates, there's a high chance that something else followed.

In a corporate environment, nuking from orbit is normally the standard approach - especially with a BOFH character who would also rip the wifi module out and pour epoxy resin into the network port.

Reverse Ferret! Forget what we told you – the iPad isn't really for work


Bend Test

I watched the link to the Bend Test video, and frankly have been freaked out by the way the guy uses a Stanley/utility knife. Around the 1:55 mark, cuts towards himself and his fingers. I'm still wincing and tensing just thinking about it.

Not to mention all the scraping of metal on metal later on (2:46).


In Space, Still: 20 years since Russia hurled first bit of floating astronaut hostel into orbit


"I propose that we launch from Skegness"

Or, launch Skegness! Think about it, space tourism is the future and Skegness's tourism is in decline, so could be a winner.

It's raining drones, but just one specimen: DJI's Matrice 200 quadcopter


Re: Raises an interesting question

How about a hydrogen canister instead?..

iPhone XR guts reveal sizzle of the XS without the excessive price tag


Re: Is it just me?

Given it's meant to be said "Ten-S", I hear/read it as "tennis" and think, "yep, at those prices it certainly is a racket.."

It's official – satellite spots water ice at the Moon's chilly poles


Re: Headline is wrong!

Ah but a Thermos can also keep cold things cold. It’s why I’ve got soup and icecream in mine today...

First low-frequency fast radio burst to grace our skies detected at last


Re: Uh, am I the only one

It’s the observed frequency we’re seeing though, we have to correct for redshift (something that is hard to do given we don’t know the source).

If we assume it’s intergalactic in origin, redshift of z=3 isn’t unreasonable, meaning it was at least 2.4GHz at source - so maybe an intergalactic wifi signal :-D

Visa fingers 'very rare' data centre switch glitch for payment meltdown


Re: Failure rate

By the same token they won’t include the successful transactions that would have been in the “unattempted but originally intended”, so it is probably safe to assume similar failure rates.

Dixons to shutter 92 UK Carphone Warehouse shops after profit warning


Re: To be expected

"Why does it take a CEO this long to realise the so called catchphrase of "headwinds""

We've got some very strong headwinds... giggiddy...


Engineer crashed mega-corp's electricity billing portal, was promoted


Re: I can forgive 'Matt' for all of his sins...

“One day they will have the brains to put some lighting in the hot isles....sigh.“

Like in the Balearics or the Canaries?

Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park


Non IT related

But when on a massive project celebration, i sensibly booked a hotel room knowing I would be rather inebriated.

Having successfully returned to the room in the wee hours and collapsed half dressed onto the bed, i was woken a mere hour later by a fire alarm. While the klaxon was traumatic enough in my delicate state, it turned out I was in a disability-friendly room which also had a rather bright flashing red light. So my quiet darkened room quickly turned into a room from hell.

I was rather bewildered.

UK age-checking smut overlord won't be able to handle the pressure – critics


Lesbian Spank Inferno

Nice reference to Coupling there - very niche!

Skype for Business has nasty habit of closing down… for business


Re: WTF @ArrZarr

Oh definitely more complicated, but 90% of the added complication will likely be due to developer ineptitude or laziness. They say the bug is due to a memory limit/constraint, as if S4B running up multiple gig of RAM would be fine otherwise.


Re: WTF @ArrZarr

You don’t need to store the coordinate with the colour data, by your logic a 7680 x 2160 24-bit bitmap would require 116MB, and a quick test in MS Paint proves that is not the case - it’s 47.5MB in line with as2003’s maths.

As for using ints to store it, well that’s just bonkers and bad programming - which to be fair, is the whole point.

Microsoft ends notifications for Win-Phone 7.5 and 8.0


@rse biscuits. In my defence, I read the article and the heading in depth to ensure the joke wasn't there, but somehow was blind to the subheading.

Still, if a joke about the continued low uptake of Microsoft's mobile OS offering, it's worth making twice?...


"The company last week reminded users (both of them) that support had ended for the aforementioned versions of its mobile operating system"

UK worker who sold customers' data to nuisance callers must cough up £1k


Re: right to silence

"Well you'd be a rotten judge then. A principle of UK justice is the right to silence. You cannot be convicted of anything purely on the basis that you declined to talk."

Unless it's your computer passwords. :-|


Actual accidents

The biggest surprise about this story is the cold callers being bothered about whether the person was even in an accident or not. In my experience they just ring you on the off-chance.

Cold Caller: "Hello, I'm calling about that accident you had recently?"

Me: "I wasn't in one..."

CC: "Oh, maybe it was a member of your family?"

Me: "No..."

CC: "<desparation>Someone you might know?...</desparation>"


Epic spacewalk, epic FAIL: Cosmonauts point new antenna in the wrong direction


Re: Deorbit throw

"Ignoring air resistance, a gentle throw antispinward will drop perigee by 50km and mean an object does one less orbit than the ISS in about a month"

And it has the happy side effect of boosting the orbit of the ISS by a teeny tiny fraction.

Erase 2017 from your brain. Face ID never happened. The Notch is an illusion


Re: I'd happily own a phone

"without a front-facing camera. Unless you video call or take selfies, not sure what the need is."

OK, but the one thing a phone really does need - a speaker at the top, the face, in order for you to use it for its primary function - a phone.

I agree, the notch would be largely irrelevant if it was a black bar at the top, not a stupid shape.

Opportunity rover survives Martian winter for eighth time


Re: Obligatory...

"Joing aside, does anyone know if they ever thought of including something in the design to keep the panels clean? I've always thought it was a bit of an own goal not to, but I'm guessing they had a pretty good reason for not adding some wipers."

Pretty in-depth response from the mission manager below. Short version, they wouldn't have taken the dust off, they'd have damaged the cells and there was a far simpler solution for the scope of the original mission - make the panels slightly bigger than required to mitigate the issue.


NASA reveals Curiosity 2020's 23-camera payload


Re: It's needs a Dyson...

Plus I’m not sure how well a vacuum cleaner would work in the near vacuum of Mars! A can of compressed air might be more useful. Or violently destructive.

FYI: iOS apps can turn on your camera any time without warning


Live view?

While it’s true you normally give all-time permission, is it not the case that when the camera is active, there is always some live view on the screen?

WPA2 security in trouble as KRACK Belgian boffins tease key reinstallation bug


Re: Firmware update or OS?

“It also requires that the attacker is [emphasis]already on the WiFi as a client[/emphasis], i.e. already knows your WPA2 key / has a WPA enterprise connection.“

Yep, that’s how I interpreted it too. To be honest, i always forget this isn’t the case on wifi anyway. I’ve always assumed anyone on the same network as me can sniff my packets (ooh er...)

Massive iPhone X leak trashes Apple's 10th anniversary circus

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Re: £1,000 for a phone

"I could get an interesting, roadworthy car for that"

I love cars under a grand. But I refer to them not as "interesting", but as a "mysterious" roadworthy car. As in, "I wonder which part I'll need to replace next..."

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"Apple was hoping to reveal to an astonished audience at tomorrow's 10th anniversary iPhone event."

Don't worry, they'll still be astonished.

Uh oh, scientists know how those diamonds got in Uranus, and they're telling everyone!

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Re: The answer to the question.

Farnsworth: "I'm sorry Fry, astronomers renamed Uranus in 2620 to end that stupid joke once and for all"

Fry: "Oh, what's it called now?"

Farnsworth: "Urectum"

Voyager antenna operator: 'I was the first human to see images from Neptune'


Re: Anntenae (not anntenas)

"you meant indicies "

And you meant indices. Pedantry is brilliant weapon to deploy, but maybe not do it while standing in a greenhouse.

She's arrived! HMS Queen Lizzie enters Portsmouth Naval Base


Re: Queen Lizzie enters Portsmouth Naval Base

God bless her, and all who sail in her...

Arcade Fire releases album on USB fidget spinner for £79/$105


Fidget spinner only option

The fidget spinner was also available without the Arcade Fire album. It retailed at £99.

Currys PC World rapped after Knowhow Cloud ad ruled to be 'misleading'


Re: Lawyered up

"Arrived as promised the next day... dented by their warehouse crew"

Strange promise they made... XD

Having said that, had exactly the same experience, from lack of staff, to ordering online myself, culminating in the large dent.

Topped off by delivery bods saying that it would be quicker if I kept the dented one, as that would allow a replacement to arrive the next day. Turns out to be bollocks and they just couldn't be arsed to take it back to the lorry.

UK government's war on e-cigs is over


Re: No vaping in the workplace please

"Unless you are around a person who is using a large e-cig that creates a huge billow"

That appears to be the problem though. How do you separate the casual e-cig user that has a quickly dissipating puff of vapour, compared to the bell-ends that appear to be using a weaponised vaping device that has a capacity roughly equivalent to a 747's fuel tank? They're the ones that tend to give vaping a bad name, and are usually obnoxious enough to do it in a very crowded environment (last concert I went to for example)

Extreme trainspotting on Britain's highest (and windiest) railway



"Of crucial importance from a safety perspective there are three distinct braking mechanisms in place to stop a runaway scenario."

I can attest to the sturdiness of the brakes on this thing. During the descent while standing at the front window admiring the view, there was cause for the system to stop. To say my face greeted the window with a resounding *THWACK* would be an understatement.

Great holiday though.

Happy 4th of July: Norks tests another missile


Re: Preemptive strike

"Obviously that doesn't help with a surprise attack which looks like a missile test. And I've no idea what the quality of intelligence sources inside the DPRK is."

This is the confusing thing. Either, they need to know in advance of a missile launch, which renders all the defensive capabilities rather useless without intelligence (which I doubt they have a huge amount of in NK). Or, they can intercept any missile they detect, which means they didn't in this case.

So either, the missile defence stuff is useless, or NK are bullshitting with their claim of a successful test of an ICBM.

Or third option, the US knew of the test, and let them carry on without reacting.

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Re: +1 for the wargames pic

Came here to make the same comment.

Some had Princess Leia's gold bikini as an awakening, I had Ally Sheedy's yoga/stretching in War Games.

Latest Windows 10 Insider build pulls the trigger on crappy SMB1


Re: As Windows 10 grows and matures...

"Why do you want to go back to crazy cd's and of of date win 7 iso's"

Because not everyone has access to fast, unlimited broadband?

PC rebooted every time user flushed the toilet


Re: You want toast!

I'm all for recycling, but I'm not sure I'd want to scavenge a food preparation device out of a skip... For example, I once through out a perfectly functioning toaster at uni because I came home to discover mice stealing the crumbs from within the toaster, and on closer inspection found evidence of piss and droppings in there.

Enjoy your toast though :-D

* anti-tamper screws to keep warranty costs down. Normal screws, a person who could just about wire a plug would probably have a go, make the problem worse, put it back together, claim under warranty denying all knowledge. Anyone savvy enough to own a triwing screwdriver would do the same thing, but less likely to make it worse..

America's mystery X-37B space drone lands after two years in orbit


Re: It heard about Trump being POTUS

I'm surprised it performed a smooth landing in that case.

TVs are now tablet computers without a touchscreen

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Re: The road ends eventually.

" will your television carry the brute force needed to handle newer, tighter codecs? "

Spot on. I remember the first HD DVB-T2 trials in London where participants were sent new receiver boxes, back in 2006/2007. The channel "BBC HD" was broadcast from Crystal Palace.

I wasn't a participant, but it was perfectly possible to capture the raw data signal on a PC capture card, it just couldn't natively decode the exotic new MPEG-4 data stream. I managed to get the signal to decode, but couldn't manage it on my reasonably well-specced PC in real-time, it probably transcoded at around 10fps. My current TV is older than this trial, so definitely wouldn't be able to handle MPEG-4 with a mere firmware upgrade.

Similarly, when DVD first launched, PCs at the time needed an MPEG-2 add-on card as the required decoding wasn't possible in software-only due to the limits on CPUs grunt at the time.

Another ZX Spectrum modern reboot crowdfunder pops up


Indeed. For those backing with over 200 notes, if you're that interested and can brave the spider-infested attic, you can have mine for half that. There's also a C64 up there with a print out of the source code for a knock-off version of Space Invaders that I wrote if you can be bothered to type it all in. It might be on a tape, but I wouldn't be sure of that... The things we used to do to avoid paying £2.99 for a cassette at John Menzies...

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