* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Don't get sued or cuffed on Twitter: Read these top 10 pitfalls

Tom 13

Re: Free speech does not give you the right to harass, defame or threaten somebody else.

Speech isn't free when you're so scared of being prosecuted for harassment, defamation, or threatening behavior that you don't engage in it.

Both extremes are bad for society. You Brits seem to have chosen one, while we Yanks are stuck with the other.

Hello nasty, don't use my music: Deceased Beastie Boy to admen

Tom 13

Re: Very strange behaviour indeed

Work is good for the soul. And his wife and daughter are still likely to have decent income from his inheritance.

Tom 13

Re: I'd also surprised if this was enforceable.

It's enforceable by law unless some general purpose statute later invalidates it.

Old man Hershey started an orphanage that was explicitly for white boys and for which they boys had to work the farm way back when he was alive. It stayed that way until SCOTUS handed down Brown vs Board of Education. Now of course it's a fully integrated facility with no work requirement.

SHOCK: Poll shows Americans think TSA is highly effective

Tom 13

Re: Survey results don't match my experience

Yes, yes it is. And in that particular instance the TSA is doing a very good job of keeping Joe Public away so that it is properly reserved to only those VIPs and their courtiers.

Tom 13

Re: Hold on...

I know some people who work for the TSA, and actually in the screening positions. Frankly, they are decent human beings, except when they have to put on the badge and follow TSA policies. And if the TSA policies don't worry you, THAT should.

Tom 13

Re: Even the Tea Partiers...would never think of cutting security spending.

Yes, we would. But given it's one of the few areas which is explicitly authorized in the Constitution, we'd cut it in a more rational way than knee-jerkers like you who just hate The Man. And, yeah, I'm pretty sure you'd have fit if we could do what we'd like to about security.

Tom 13

Re: If they're doing something right...

I won't necessarily hold not knowing how many they've caught against them. If the managed to nab them quietly before they became headlines, I can see them keeping quiet about it. My concern is more the ones that got through to the plane that we DO know about. Stopped in all instances by non-law enforcement types on the plane (let alone the people allegedly hired to do so). I mean, I don't think we've even had an off duty city beat cop in on one of these captures.

Tom 13

@Eddy Ito: Important clarification point:

In your post you used the ambiguous "they" which could be taken to mean TSA and therefore we might be able to deem them effective. The ambiguous "they" as far as I can recall is not the TSA, but the passengers on the flight, who proceed to hold the perp until the plan lands and TSA and/or FBI can take over. I do believe the most pointed recent case of this would be the pilot* who lost it and was held by the passengers at the co-pilot's request.

*Yes, I know he wasn't a terrorist and his recent behavior in jail points to a severe mental problem which probably needs proper treatment as opposed to jail time. But that actually only reinforces the case that the airlines and TSA aren't truly effective, they are only effective at security theater. Pilots are supposedly screened even better than passengers, at least from the mental health perspective.

Chinese man's six-ton balls save lives

Tom 13

Re: note to self

You forgot the more important note to self:

*note to self: remember what antibiotics are and why I need them.

Oracle won't pull plug on Java SE 6 until 2013

Tom 13


And they just finished migrating our most troublesome and somewhat critical app from to last month.

I was really hoping for a break in the "critical app requires non-supported java" support calls. Oracle needs to figure out that most business can't support that sort of release cycle. Sun probably did us all a huge favor in keeping a (mostly) stable platform for about 5 years.

US judge gives RIM its $147m back in patent spat

Tom 13

Re: Samsung packaging changed to look similar to Apple.

I guess you've never bought OTC meds at the supermarket then. I've seen all kinds of generic in packages that are nearly indistiguishable from their brand name counter parts except for the words printed on the package, an I mean down to the exact color and line scheme for the competing products, right next to each other in aisle.

Tom 13

Re: Patents are not about visual styles.

That OUGHT to be the case, but sadly here in the US it isn't. In fact a former employer had a device for which the patent was denied and they found a way to use the style of a connector to protect the device. I don't recall the details anymore, but it was truly ridiculous. Former employer went bankrupt about a year after I left their employ.

Doctor Who gets one-off special to mark Time Lord's 50th year on telly

Tom 13

Re: I hope...

Agreed. A 50th anniversary show ought to have as many of the still living doctors, and companions on as possible. And a few who are no longer with us should be represented by good character actors/actresses who also look the part. Something on the order of The Five Doctors only without Baker stuck in a timestream because he didn't want anything to do with the project.

Tom 13

Re: Last season was a huge disappointment

I don't dislike the current doctor, but recently I've been having trouble name the actors for the new Doctors. I didn't realize quite why until I bought and read a puff piece in the US publication Entertainment Weekly. In it they'd done the usual "who is your favorite Doctor" survey and next to it they had their pictures with vote percentages. Looking at the pic for the old series, each of the Doctors stands out as an individual character. Even Eccleston carries it off, but the last two come across as interchangeable male fashion models.

Don't get me wrong, I think Tennant was a wonderful Doctor on screen, and Smith is doing a decent job too, but just looking at the photo jumble,.. Well, there's just an element of sameness there which should never, ever happen with a Doctor.

The policy that helped Anonymous hack AAPT

Tom 13

Re: It could go the other way

Both policies are fine, it's just that punters need to read them and understand their risks.

If punters can't be arsed to do that, I don't see that vendors with either policy should care what happens to their data.

Tom 13

Re: He's probably going to retire soon

Simple solution: work with him and a financier to buy the company from him. If it works, you'll never have to worry about your boss again.

Deadly pussies kill more often than owners think

Tom 13

Re: area in which I live has strict rules about keeping cats indoors

Yeah, those would be the areas inhabited by fuckwits who should never be allowed to pass laws since they have no understanding of basic science.

On the cat shit front, cats bury theirs dogs leave it in the open. I've cleaned way more dog shit out of my yard then I've ever cleaned cat shit. And I've now lived in a house with cats more years than I've lived in a house without cats. And most dogs do their business while on a walk with the owner standing over it while it is doing so. Much easier to clean up when you're standing right there when it happens. If you ever find cat shit in your yard and can prove it was my cat and not the feral ones running around, I'll happily come clean it up.

Tom 13

@Anonymous Coward

Nope. Our were rescued from the wild where they lived for many months. The rescue is to reduce disease vectors and the pound sterilizes the cats before they adopt them out.

Tom 13

Re: Efficient killing machines....

Depends on the cat. Some smaller cats know EXACTLY how to put a dog in his place. My roomie is particularly fond of a story about her 15 pound cat taking one swipe at the 50 pound dog's nose. And thereafter, the dog always made way for the cat.

Tom 13

Re: Makes no difference,

The difference between a cat owner and a dog owner is that a cat owner KNOWS he has a barely domesticated wild beast who shares his living space while a dog owner has DELUDED himself into thinking he is the master of a wild animal. Both will kill given the chance.

Tom 13

@Captain Underpants

Yep, we have two cats now. Mostly they stay inside. Both of them and their predecessor actual call from the door to be let in to use the litter box.

Tom 13

Re: What A Load Of Homo Sapiens Bullcrap !

That argument is the full of crap bit. In these parts you can't rescue a cat from a shelter and still have it reproduce after you get it home. So it's only the feral ones or the pure breads that are breeding.

SCO keeps dying, and dying, and dying

Tom 13

@AndrueC: That was work for a different SCO

and you are exempted from the criticism here.

Yes, some of us are old enough to remember the group to which you refer, and the more honorable organization they were, and that they are completely unrelated to the current SCO. Their theft of the name is numbered amongst their crimes.

Tom 13

Re: when Microsoft folded in under 10 years.

I've always regarded the MS case as a continuation of the IBM case. Essentially MS inherited what was left of the IBM monopoly when the DoJ was done. That they lasted even 10 years is further testament to the power IBM once had.

Tom 13

@Matt Bryant

Okay, so they did a good job of laundering it and in a couple of instances used their protection money shake down to do the laundering, but as far as the Public is concerned, it was Micro$hafting money wot done it.

And in this case they deserve the moniker.

Bill Gates, Harry Evans and the smearing of a computer legend

Tom 13
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@Richard Plinston

Thanks for the info.

I came into tech work about the time MS was taking things over, so this bit of history is before me. Nice to hear it from somebody who was there.

Tom 13

Re: I am thoroughly confused by it all

I believe this is the key bit:

The first 26 system calls of MS-DOS 1.0 are identical to the first 26 system calls of CP/M. A few of the API names, accessed through CP/M's int 21h mechanism, were altered – CP/M's "Sequential Read" became MS-DOS's "Read Sequential" but the order was preserved.

Most people would find it difficult to believe that on a purely random basis you'd wind up with 26 items in the exact same sequence. Slightly altering a name here or there reeks of someone copying a piece of art and carefully altering 7 or 9 minor points in order to claim it as different.

Now, I have no experience writing that sort of hardware level code, so it may be there are good engineering reasons to sequence them in exactly that order. But to a layman it sure looks suspicious. Also I think modern clean room projects to write code that matches APIs wouldn't allow the actual coder to look at even disassembled code from the binary, although I expect those practices have arisen from specific court cases and it was too early in coding history to expect those precautions to have been taken.

France's biggest Apple reseller shuts up shop

Tom 13

Re: Why should Apple have to hold back stock from a major distributor to give to a minor reseller?

As the first poster indicated, it depends first on the terms of the contract, and secondarily up Apple's actual behavior. If Apple preferentially supplied material to the Big Box stores, I think they have a case regardless of the contract given that it is France. If the contract specified any sorts of benefits to the stores for being exclusively Apple outlets and Apple didn't deliver on those promises, even a redneck capitalist like me is going to tell them to get out the checkbook and put lots of zeros between the last of the non-zero front digits and the end of number demarcation.

Radio hams unite to fight off new powerline comms standard

Tom 13

Re: @Maxson

His point, self-admittedly assinine, was that with the power off, there wouldn't be interference from PLT, not that the HAM radios wouldn't work. Of course if it ONLY works when the power is out, there's not much point in being a HAM in the first place.

Wikipedia collapses threatening the very fabric of civilisation

Tom 13
Black Helicopters

He's got the wrong conspiracy

Jimbo's not a threat, but he is a decent testing ground. This is the dry run before they take down the other troublesome wiki.

Tom 13
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Re: Re: It's actually quite good for...

No, I think you had it right the first time.

IT job creation bucks up US economy

Tom 13

Re: Don't call this democracy...

For the Great Depression, you bet I do. It's his policies and other like him who came before him that put us in this hole: Barney Frank chief amonst them. Bush warned we needed to strengthen the checks on the mortgage industry but Barney wanted to "roll the dice a little longer on this" resulting in the collapse two years later. After that only a fool would follow the same failed policies Roosevelt attempted to use to get us out of the First Great Depression. And yes, this is the Second Great Depression, only nobody wants to call it that - unemployment has been above 15% for longer than the First Great Depression. The BLS just masks it by reporting the excess as "underemployed" or "ceased to look for work."

Rampant fake Facebook ad clicks riddle hits dead end

Tom 13


1) Only a fool pays per impression for ads on websites. They are even easier to fake than per click ads. Only a bigger fool would sell ads based on what an advertiser tells him the response rate is based on his sales. So even though per click sucks, it's the best of bad options.

2) Most punters can't be bothered with AdBlock and NoScript, so Javascript just works for most advertisers. On the other hand, most punters do have AV software, which helpfully deletes cookies as an invasion of privacy. So cookies suck for tracking, even the good ones. Which moves you into areas on non-cookie cookies, which to my way of thinking are even more suspicious.

Yes, you'll want to do your own internal sales tracking on your own website. That will let you work with vendors who are better for you. But never make the mistake of thinking any of your payment options are good, because they all suck.

Oz regulator tells telly-makers to mind their language

Tom 13

Re: A victory for common sense.

Not many. I made the mistake of buying one of those bluerays a couple weeks ago and only discovering it when I asked a friend to set it up while I was working on something else. When he told me I'd have to take it upstairs to update it I told him to just put it back in the box. Next day I returned it to the store and got one that had built in WiFi.

If it were me, I'd mandate the "WiFi receiver sold separately" label. The others offer too much leeway to continue the deceptive advertising.

EA sues Zynga over ripping off Sims Social

Tom 13

Re: Zynga @ 3rd August 2012 20:57 GMT

The Zynga games I've played all pretty much look like each other, particularly with their annoying grid concept. If what you wrote were true, they'd all look different.

Doesn't mean they aren't a lower life form, just that you're slagging off about something you don't know anything about because its the in thing to do today.

Tom 13

Re: Zynga

I haven't played either of the games listed in the dispute, but I doubt the accuracy of what you've been told. Zynga re-uses their graphics and game mechanics across their various titles. Cityville uses the Farmville graphics and mechanics for its farming section, likewise with CastleVille. Vampites Wars and Mafia Wars used similar metaphors and similar graphics. Ditto their pirate game whose name I now forget.

If what you said is true, that would also mean that all the competitors also had pixel for pixel copies and perfect copies of the game mechanisms.

And honestly, given that I just quit playing Cityville because of game mechanics problems, I doubt they've "perfectly copied" that, because surely at least one competitor has a mechanic that works.

Republican filibuster blocks Senate Cybersecurity bill

Tom 13

Re: "to better protect our nation from potentially catastrophic cyber-attacks"

Obviously you've just woken up from a 20 year slumber and are therefore completely unaware of Stuxnet and Flame. Perhaps you should catch up a bit.

Tom 13


I'd recommend laying off the kool-aid, but it's obviously too late. Your brain is already gone. It's the Big 0 trying to destroy what little was left of our Republic and turn us into another People's Republic. So far he's done almost as good of a job as Mugabe, it's just we're a bit more stout people than his poor victims were.

Tom 13


You'd have to read the bill to know that, and nobody has.

Tom 13

Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

Yes, but the Republicans learned the tactic at the feet of Democrats.

How one bad algorithm cost traders $440m

Tom 13

Re: "...but we don’t know if it’s enough to allow the firm to survive the blow."

'scuse me! Crazy right-wing 'Merkin here and I got what seems like a really simple question:

WHY would we want this company to survive? What they did was bat-shit stupid, they should go bankrupt in payouts for their mistakes.

Amount of CO2 being sucked away by Earth 'has doubled in 50 years'

Tom 13

Re: Has it come to that,...

Yes it has, although the Warming Alarmists are Deniers about that.

Tom 13

Re: Quote of the week

It really doesn't matter how long the drunk spends looking for his keys under the light where he parked the car when he dropped them in the dark over by the bar. Same thing applies here. Which is also why all the Warming Alarmists posting about acidifying the ocean are completely irrelevant. IF those processes are well understood which is the heart of their claim, then they aren't the source of the extra carbon sinks and since those carbon sinks are completely unknown, we have no idea what their parameters might be. And if those processes AREN'T well understood, the alarmists are in an even more precarious position than if they simply admit there are additional carbon sinks the model hasn't included, so there's zero chance you'll see them admit that possibility.

Tom 13

@Shannon Jacobs: He is NOT an asset for the Reg.

He got you here to post. I stopped by and replied to your post. That's two posts for an article you're denouncing, and I count 5 down votes when posting this.

I'd say your assessment of Lewis' El Reg value is badly flawed. I'd hazard your understanding of science is equally flawed.

Booth babes banned by Chinese gaming expo

Tom 13

Re: Anyway, sex sells. Simple. Ask any bloke.

Or any girls checking out the cosmetics ads in Vogue or Cosmopolitan.

Tom 13

Re: Maybe we should bring back gladiatorial combat.

It never went away. Only these days it goes by names like "boxing" and "Ulimited Street Fighting" and "Ultimate Fighter". None of which are to be confused with "professional wrestling" which is much more akin to an actual Booth Babe performance.


Tom 13


Haven't a very, very small number of people ALWAYS survived rabies? I seem to recall that from my very, very old reading about Pasteur and his work. Problem is it is such a small percentage. And isn't there a Kirk-era Star Trek episode about the folly of making such assumptions when you find a resistant population?

Apple demands Samsung flogged for 'unethical' court doc leak

Tom 13

Re: Here we go again

The only Apple product I've ever purchased was a refurbed iPod, which hardly ever gets used. I'm a redneck 'Merkin who likes to see our products dominating world markets. Even I can see how biased the judge is being in this case.

If Hotmail was a person it could have kids now. But it would be a crime

Tom 13

Re: gmail gets just too much spam

Of all the accounts (and I've had quite a few) I've had, gmail gets the least spam, even in the spam box.

Signed up for a Live account (one of the many rebrands of Hotmail) when I was out of work and someone recommended I be on FB for job searching. Don't monitor it much anymore. When I did, all of the spam I got was my own fault (damn Monster).

The account where I see the most spam hitting the inbox instead of the designated spam folder is my Yahoo account. Which may explain some of their problems.

What happens when Facebook follows MySpace?

Tom 13

Re: you weren't spending enough time on actually being ON HOLIDAY?

Depends on what your idea of ON HOLIDAY is. When my roomie gets back, she weeds it down to just the 1000+ photos she wants to share with people. Packs about 20 4G memory cards with her for every trip.

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