* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Global warming brings peace and happiness

Tom 13

I rather suspect they could, and to some extent even if they couldn't

they seem to have been more fastidious record keepers than the current crop of professional climatologists.

Tom 13

Actually, we already have the technology, it would just be hideously expensive

to undertake. Granted, I think the undertaking would finally move us significantly in the direction of being able to get off this rock, but I'm not going to use it as a whipping boy just because I want to advance space exploration.

Controlling the temperature aspect of the climate is a relatively simple task of launching a sufficient number of satellites with mirrors that can reflect light toward or away from the surface of the earth. Personally, even if the satellites were there, I'm not sure we'd be smart enough to use them without actually throwing the whole thing out of kilter. I'd put them as seriously more dangerous than a couple billion extra tons of CO2 in the atmosphere.

iPhone 4 fix to centre on software, negate need for recall

Tom 13

No, there will be no red faces here.

This has gone past deserved criticism and into full blown Conspiracy Theory territory. With a hefty assist from Jobs himself, of course.

Where's the Jobs with horns icon?

So long then, Windows 2000

Tom 13

Fisher-Price interface?

What Fisher-Price interface?



Oh! That. never really noticed it because one of the first things I always did was go into System Properties, Advanced and set the devices for best performance, which turns off much of the glitz.

A curious case of the shingles

Tom 13

I think your reporting was okay.

You noted nobody would go on record in the original article, as well as indicating this was a down the road thing. Which means Seagate isn't shipping this currently. Sure it has the potential to affect us all. I don't know a great deal about the physics of hard drives, but even reading the bit about changing cluster sizes made that bleeding obvious. During the design phase is exactly the time at which discussions about benefits and impacts needs to be discussed. When product is already on the shelves it is way too late. As Apple are discovering and MS have beaten into them repeatedly without learning.

No Bing bang for Microsoft's Yahoo! marriage

Tom 13
Black Helicopters

Badda Bing! Badda Boom!

Bad Boom!*

*Not sure if this should be hand grenade or black helicopter. But since Korben was special ops I have to go with the helicopter.

Patch Tuesday sounds death knell for Win XP SP2

Tom 13

If it bluescreens when you install sp3,

the system was bolluxed up to begin with and needed to be rebuilt anyway. It was the vendor training website and developed in-house apps that kept us from upgrading to sp3 at the last place I worked.

MS springs service pack preview of Windows 7

Tom 13

I think the last SP MS issued which significantly changed OS funtionality was

the one that turned on the firewalls. Other than that an SP normally means "we bundled up all of our patches into one executable so you only have to reboot once instead of 4 times to get up to this standardized point in the life cycle. And it is also easier to put on CD to carry around and install when you are securely building your new PC in the only environment where it actually safe: off of the Internet, except of course we won't publicly admit that."

I for one prefer saying SP to typing all that crap to explain what they mean.

Gulf spill to annihilate all earthlings, says seer

Tom 13

And to think this all could have been avoided if only

that guy on the rig hadn't asked "Do you have a light?"

MP3tunes offers tuneful truce to Apple and Google

Tom 13

When they've got a service that lets me rip my cd collection and upload those

they can call me, until then: No Sale.

P2P judge trims student's fine by 90 per cent

Tom 13

In the USA?

shoplifting - nailed it.

burglary (similar to shoplifting) - nailed it.

Breaking and Entering - nailed it.

damages for injuries - whole different ball of wax. That's a weird Rube Goldberg machine mixing a roulette wheel and a left-shifted normal curve to the payout number.

Tom 13

I thought the cost worked out to about 75K US per year but

PEW reports the mean to be about $29,000/yr (http://www.pewcenteronthestates.org/news_room_detail.aspx?id=49398) for 2009.

Of course that doesn't include the cost of the trial and the hearings that will be required before he goes to jail either.

Business guru tries to silence bloggers over 'misleading' mailshot

Tom 13

Re: "We're working with various partners to try and get this stopped."

Erm, no you're not. Not really. If you were, his lawyers would already be in a world of hurt. Because instead of looking at potential court action against the twits sending the cease and desist letters, they'd be raising ethics issues with the local bar. THAT will get the attention of even the shiftiest of the ambulance chaser types and a smart salute to boot. And it is highly unethical to be sending cease and desist letters under false pretenses.

SCO rises from the dead (again)

Tom 13

A litigation menace that is immune to bullets?

Time to break out the sonic screwdriver!

AT&T iPad 'hacker' breaks gag order to rant at cops

Tom 13

Actually if he was enough of a twit to leave them in plain sight,

or in locations that would be searched as a normal part of the search and seizure warrant, they are admissible and he needs to worry about those as much if not more than the hacking charges. Given that he is enough of a twit to breach a gag order...

Budget to cost over a million jobs: Official

Tom 13

The double dip is headed our way all over the world.

Both the British and American governments have been padding their payrolls for the last 60 years at the expense of the private sector. During Brown and Bush the rate accelerated greatly. Obama more than doubled down on Bush's rate of acceleration. That might get a little breaking in November, but certainly no reversal.

Neither government can create private sector jobs, but both of them can and have been killing them. The pain of reigning it all in will be high, but stable sustainable private sector employment on the other side will be well worth it. If we can just get our governments to do the right thing for a change.

Yes, software can be patented, US Supremes say

Tom 13

It is not SCOTUS that failed, but Congress

SCOTUS must be bound by the words of the laws Congress passes, or the words of the Constitution itself lest it become a tyrant. We're sort of sensitive on that point over here, Ms Kagan and Sotomayor not withstanding.

But, I concur our IP laws suck and require a major overhaul with the generous application of horse sense.

Tom 13

You've summed up the IP law problem rather succinctly in the middle of that rant:

"Obvious? You betcha. Patentable? Ditto."

Fix that and the rest will probably sort itself out. I'd concur on the earlier remarks about having different lengths of patents for different things. My strawmen are 3 years for software patents, 17 for mechanical gizmos and drugs, and a return to 75 for corporate copyrights and until death for individuals.

Rancid IE6 'more secure' than Chrome and Opera US bank says

Tom 13

Unfortunately, you forgot US libel Law

(Okay, so actually it is US Law The guy who can afford the most expensive lawyer for the longest period of time wins. In this case I rather suspect that will be Chase.

Observer columnist in online porn mixup

Tom 13

Why read the articles?

The comments are more fun.

Microsoft PR boss sweats in face of Apollo Creed Apple, Google... world

Tom 13

Once you've earned the title of "Bully" it is hard to get rid of it.

Even if a bigger bully comes along. The integration of IE into Windows to kill Netscape still sticks in this moderately old-timer's craw. And yes I recognize that Netscape was no more standards compliant than IE at the time. It's only one of the places where MS earned the title, others can quote their "favorites." But insisting Vista wasn't a turd pretty much blew the lid off whatever goodwill MS had left for most people. If they want to loose the title, they'll need to work even harder at losing it than they did at winning it, and it will probably take twice as long to boot.

nCircle purges posts after researcher's arrest for explosives

Tom 13

Not surprised given Canada's penchant for gun confiscation.

When the cops lose sight of the fact objects don't kill people miscreants do, there's no telling what they will charge you with.

HP buys iTunes jailbreaker

Tom 13

Actually, I'd bet most typical consumers have more than 1 PC, and

would prefer to have the ability to synch their iTunes to their iPod rather than the other way around. In my case I hadn't read closely enough and thinking my music was backed up on my iPod, didn't have a back of my iTunes. Drive crashed, now I've got several man-day of work reconverting the music because it all came from CDs, not from their crapware store.

Google vanishes Android apps from citizen phones

Tom 13

If as several posters have noted

the apps actually were actual latent security threats, then Google did the right thing in pulling them, but badly botched the announcement. The announcement should clearly have stated they were potential security threats. Google choosing to go farther and say they were unaware of malicious intent on the part of the security researchers is optional. As a company I wouldn't get into trying to determine intentions. I would not denigrate their defenses but I also would not advocate for them either.

As for all those posters saying you ought to have complete control over the phone you bought, I'd like to collect my nickel when your phone gets compromised because of other compromised phones on the system and Google having and using a kill switch would have saved YOUR phone. Of course, I know I won't, so just STFU.

Tom 13

Buying an overpowered PC and then using BOINC to run units for the SETI project

serves no useful purpose and is for research only. That doesn't mean somebody out there should have a kill switch that will remove from my system. Okay, so technically I gave up on SETI and now run it for three other programs that are probably a bit more useful, but the principle still applies.

IBM sued over failed virtual PC server projects

Tom 13


Do Devon signed a dodgy contract with IBM that might have been okay were it not for also being hit by the US economic collapse. Now they are alleging RICO. Which I understand because RICO has lower proof requirements than just straight fraud. Although that doesn't mean RICO applies. In point of fact, based only on the info in this story, I think that part of the suit can probably be dismissed quickly and forthrightly.

If I were on the jury, I'd hope for a lengthy trial, find for Devon, and award them damages of $1.

Cyber cops want stronger domain rules

Tom 13

I still contend that with the current crop of CAPTCHAs,

a bot has more of a chance at successfully submitting the correct answer than an actual person does.

Personally I'd be okay with a third party registrar having my details file away and them presenting the public face for the whois registry, and the requirement that the police need to present a search warrant to get the information. I just don't see that helping the police track the bad guys. For all the trouble you'd think it would be to setup a false front for a business, lots of crooks do fairly frequently. About $400 to Chico downtown for a fake ID, setup some bank accounts, rent a cheap apartment, rent a cheap spot in a warehouse using the fake ID... The names, places and prices would change in the UK of course, but the principle would be the same. And still leaves the rest of us normal folks depending on signature based spam filters to keep some of the crap out.

Facebook in 'solid net profit' shocker

Tom 13

Is that before or after

settling the coming privacy lawsuits?

BCS trustee threatens rebels with libel action

Tom 13

Hah! At last a chance to laugh at some foolishness* in the British tort system!

A comment like that would PROVE he should be immediately removed from office on this side of the pond. You must necessarily be able to call for the emergency meeting to have a debate about the properness of their decisons.

*And a RARE pleasure it is. Mostly you guys do seem to have a better system at least vis a vie libel/slander cases. Some comments are actually beyond the pale even in political debate and ought to be actionable under libel, even for public figures. Others are certainly within the realm of debate and ought not. Unfortunately, it takes actual wise and just judges to make such a distinction. Lacking them the rules seem to move to one extreme or the other.

Antarctic glacier melt maybe 'not due to climate change'

Tom 13

Yep, the climate warming fascists are it again.

Science isn't democracy, it is cold hard facts. That in turn means it doesn't give a rat's ass about balance. The FACT being reported is that there is a very plausible, simpler explanation than "an incredibly complex system, of which our understanding is merely scratching the surface." That simplicity was how Einstein did away with the whole Ether theory that was then much beloved by scientists everywhere with a more than 35:1 ratio at the time.

Global warming isn't science, it's the religion of fascists intent on controlling what the rest of us do. Like the original fascism, it has a large number of allegedly unbiased idiots proclaiming adherence to it is the way forward to an improved human race.

FCC takes baby step towards net neutrality

Tom 13

Except that it isn't a baby step.

The FCC is claiming power that has been repeatedly struck down by SCOTUS and other appellate courts since the AT&T breakup case. Either the FCC has the power to regulate ALL of the Internet, or it has no power to regulate anything. This also isn't an isolated piece despite the author's attempt to paint it as such. Furthermore he censored mention that all three of the approving members of the FCC were NOT approved by Congress, they were recess appointments by The Big 0, which makes those 74 Democrats objecting to the plan all that more important. This plan doesn't congressional support, let alone bipartisan support, and is farthest of all removed from broad based support from the American public. But that is par for the course for SF socialists.

Facebook's critics 'unrealistic', says US privacy law expert

Tom 13

This twit passes for a privacy expert?

I don't give a damn how long an advertising company is permitted to keep my information. I want opt-in so it doesn't just get handed over to them in the first place. I don't want it handed over in the first place because I know the advertising companies don't give a damn about how long the law says they are allowed to keep my info. In fact the only people who give less of a damn are the lawyers who will only be too happy to file a class action lawsuit on my behalf (one that lines their pockets and leaves me with a $5 off coupon for the advertiser's services/products).

Microsoft justifies lost Office 2010 upgrades

Tom 13

If they are, they need to get better organized and fight for the same rights as schools in the US.

I purchased MS wares for a 501(c)3 here in the US, and the cost compared to retail was a pittance.

FSA warns firms about social media promotions

Tom 13


How do you even write the disclaimer itself in a tweet? I've never seen a disclaimer of less than 140 characters.

Links to blog in email made sender liable, says US court

Tom 13

Too much missing information to draw any conclusions

It isn't clear from this article of the links what the nature of the forwarded email was. If 1) the forwarded email linked specifically to the defamatory posts, and 2) the initial email was itself defamatory, and 3) the forwarder made no attempts to refute the defamation, then I would hold the forwarder intended to publish defamatory remarks. On the other hand, if it was merely to the home page of a blog, I wouldn't.

Crooks siphon $644,000 from school district's bank account

Tom 13

Re: Re: First WTF?

"Any apparent leniency of the sentence probably reflects his actual part in the crime. Is that wrong ?"

Damn skippy there is! The enabler should get worse than the crooks that took, and the crooks that took should be paying three times what they took plus compounded interest. But that's not the end of what is wrong here. The so-called accounting department should be doing the perp-walk in front of the enabler. They're the ones who are *supposed* to be the ones watching out for the enablers and the thieves.

$11m jackpot just a 'reset' message, says casino

Tom 13

Yes the casion is technically in the legally correct position.

Still, they might have used it for publicity and written it off against the advertising budget. More ID ten Ts playing the one-armed bandits would probably more than cover the loss.

Yahoo! hooks up to Facebook blabberstream

Tom 13

It's not the "encouragement" to which I object

it's the force public exposure.

US census inflates latest employment numbers

Tom 13

Not Bush, Democrats in Congress

Bush tried to head off the loan collapse by requesting changes to loaning rules, but Barney Frank (backed up by Obama and Chris "low rate personal loans" Dodd wanted to "roll the dice some more."

Now as for the banks, it depends on exactly which ones you're talking about. Many have already repaid the Treasury, with interest. The ones who are pretty much Democrat subsidiaries, not so much. The catch is, The Big 0 hasn't put the money back into the General Fund he's kept in the TARP fund (aka The Big 0's slush fund) to loan out to "financial" institutions like GM. That's money were never going to see back again. Sort of like all the stock in the same company we now "own."

As for whether or not we can avoid total collapse, that depends pretty much on the fall elections. If conservative Republicans don't take back at least one branch of Congress, those chances will be diminishing.

Tom 13

Not simply fishy, but outright rotten.

The agency has publicly stated that they intentionally over-hired to insure they had enough people at the start. What hasn't so publicly been admitted is that they hired people for a week of training then laid them off. A week or so later, they hired them back again and counted both hirings as "new."

I've been fully disinvested from stocks for almost a year now and am not likely to get back in any time soon.

Steve Jobs fears Nation of Bloggers

Tom 13

Didn't miss a thing.

If so-called journalists were doing what you claim they do, newspapers wouldn't be in quite the bind they are at the moment. What the bloggers have managed to reveal is the unmitigated bias of the news media and enhance the rate of their decline. Facts DO make the newspaper, it's the editorial that gets in the way, especially the exclusion of the bits that don't fit the editorialist's zeitgeist.

And don't bother to give me the usual bs line about neutrality. I proved that point using the New York Times to a college mate (S) more than 20 years ago. Never did, never will read the rag. I told him the problem was the editorializing posing as news writing. He challenged me about not reading it. I said, okay, top right is the most important story in the paper, open it up, what do we have? Turned out to be an abortion article. Right away he wanted me to pick a different story because that was a special case. Different college mate (M) who typically didn't support my political positions said no, I hit it fair and square. Proceeded to explain how to rewrite in a more neutral stance. M agreed I successfully rewrote in a more neutral stance that did not injure either side. Having finished that I granted S's point and told him the next most important story was on the left side then under the fold right side. Did the same thing with the next story which wasn't about abortion. Did the same thing with the third. S finally gave up. It's only gotten worse since then.

Zuckerberg sweats privacy criticism

Tom 13

Here's a free piece of advice Zuckerberg:

Don't go into politics. It is critically important that politicians either be able to lie with a straight face and not sound like a whimpering cornered rat or be able to spew sufficient bilge so that nobody has a clue about what you meant when you spewed.

If you weren't trying to open Facebook information to World +Dog, you wouldn't have defaulted rights to the LEAST common denominator when you made changes.

'Clickjacking' worm hits hundreds of thousands on Facebook

Tom 13

So, any takers for how long it takes Zuckerman to figure out that

opening his social networking to world + dog scanning was an invitation to this sort of problem?

Firefox takes walk down 64-bit Windows street

Tom 13

Once again the factoid conceals the larger truth

that although MS has been playing in the 64-bit browser realm for longer than most, it has been playing in the sense of two 5-year olds sharing their toys (and in fact, I owe an apology to the five year olds who share their toys better than MS plays in the 64-bit space, but there was no closer comparison) than in the sense of professional sports teams competing for a championship title. 64-bit IE is so bad the default IE task bar icon links to the 32-bit version on Vista instead of the 64-bit version. Or at least it did when I bought my copy. This caused no end of confusion when trying to run the company SSL VPN connection at the time.

Bangladesh cuts off Facebook

Tom 13

No need to wonder

It's public exposition would be funded by tax dollars despite howls of protest. Google

"Piss Christ" for examples, wire stories, etc.

Searchers say bug bars way back to Google

Tom 13

Yep, or click the little arrow thingie next to it,

which displays the whole back history and you can go back as far as you want to in it.

Not like this bug is a real problem if you actually know your browsers.

Zappos.com's little sister loses $1.6m in pricing cockup

Tom 13

Given the postings and follow ups

I think they really did lose $1.6 million. But even if the hit was only half that in these economic times not many companies will take the hit. Advertising budgets aren't actually very flexible after they've been set at budget time. I've worked next to the poor schmuck trying to sell advertising, and if he didn't catch them before the budget was set, there was pretty much no sale. Thankfully I was doing the typesetting for the articles and not working the sales desk.

'Draw Mohammed' page removed from Facebook

Tom 13

Just for the record

I have been to a Penn and Teller show where Penn took great pride in yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theater.

Apple kills 'Get a Mac' ad campaign

Tom 13

Now the MS ads

(MS did what [b] I [/b] told them too) I find truly irritating. Partly because they are even less true than the Mac ads, but mostly because as a response to the Mac ads, I find them too whiny - just like the fanbois.

Tom 13

Fanbois of either stripe are equally irritating.

I've never owned a Mac but I've always loved their commercials.

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