* Posts by Richard 12

3021 posts • joined 16 Jun 2009

Trainee techie ran away and hid after screwing up a job, literally

Richard 12
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Re: Screws and escaped death.

A spur off a lighting circuit to run a water heater...

By God man, you must never, ever touch another electrical installation!

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Have YOU had your breakfast pint? Boffins confirm cheeky daily tipple is good for you

Richard 12
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Re: Interesting curve and infrequent drinkers.

Definitely the sugar free ones.

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Micron: Hot DRAM, we're still shifting piles of kit, but somebody's missing our XPoint

Richard 12
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Re: MLC and TLC are crap already.. QLC will be the worst really...

Most of the failures we've seen were due to poor SSD firmware and OS support, not the Flash itself.

When a few customers first put SSDs in (against advice), they'd die in about six months because OS support was terrible and SSD firmware poor.

Later, OS support became good and failures instead clustered with particular brands and sizes.

Firmware updates fixed that.

These days, they last very well.

The downside is that they die without warning - sure, the health data makes some claims but most failures don't seem to trip the warnings.

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How a tax form kludge gifted the world 25 joyous years of PDF

Richard 12
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Re: PDF has its uses I suppose

That's why standards and legal documents use paragraph numbers.

As does the Bible and other holy books.

That particular problem was solved over a thousand years ago - in fact, before the concept of a "page" was invented.

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Microsoft CEO wades into ICE outcry: Cool it, we only do legacy mail

Richard 12
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Trump started this.

The law permitting this was put on the books by Congress during the Clinton administration.

Clinton, Bush and Obama all refused to implement it. One can guess why.

Trump and Jeff Sessions then did implement it as a zero-tolerance policy. The Executive Order was written and signed in thr 6th April 2018.

It's published online, you can go and read it.

The current Republican-controlled Congress (they control both at the moment) could indeed have repealed the law at any time, however there was no immediate need until Jeff Sessions wrote that order. The one invoking God for some reason.

Between April 19 and May 31, 1,995 children were separated from their parents. Some as young as 8 months. I couldn't find figures for the first weeks of June.

Yes, nearly 2000 kids in a month and ten days.

No other US administration in history has ever done anything like this.

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OpenBSD disables Intel’s hyper-threading over CPU data leak fears

Richard 12
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Re: Spectre on the hyperthreads

Yes, surely any thread an application starts that's in the same security context should be trusted by that application.

It's a different matter when a thread changes its security level, or calls into the kernel.

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What's all the C Plus Fuss? Bjarne Stroustrup warns of dangerous future plans for his C++

Richard 12
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Re: Who can find the glm::rotate() function?

Namespaces are because it's not possible to give every class, function and constant a unique, memorable name.

It is common - nay certain - that a mid to large sized project will have multiple things that with the same name.

But if you have Eigen::matrix4x4 and GLM::matrix4x4, you can actually say which one you mean.

Nothing more.

And of course, you can just tell the compiler "in this source file I use GLM", to avoid typing the letters.

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Richard 12
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There are several C++ map-reduce libraries

Boost, Qt etc

Essentially:

Future<type> result = map_reduce (data, mapfunctor, reducefunctor);

The Future class gives you a flag/signal/event when "done", and an accessor to get the actual result. If useful, it can also indicate progress and get cancelled.

Manylots of threads go off and do the map and reduce functors to the data, then the Future lets interested parties know.

The calling thread can start it and do something else while it's running, or block until done.

The Qt implementation is really rather nice.

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Wires, chips, and LEDs: US trade bigwigs detail Chinese kit that's going to cost a lot more

Richard 12
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Re: wireless cables?

I have a gold-plated optical TOSlink cable.

I'm sure the gold makes the photons sound better.

(It was cheaper than the normal ones)

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Indiegogo lawyer asks ZX Spectrum reboot firm: Where's the cash?

Richard 12
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Can't be true

Given the number of Kickstarters I've seen for items that are physically impossible.

And the Kickstarters I've backed for books and games (physical and PC) that certainly did not exist when Kickstarted.

Not entirely sure what a "working prototype" of a book would be, to be honest. A plot outline?

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No fandango for you: EU boots UK off Galileo satellite project

Richard 12
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Re: Someone remind me

I don't recall exactly, but I am pretty sure that they are the same people.

The UK also pushed very hard for the rules that explicitly exclude non-EU countries from building any part of Galileo.

So the Government knew, and the EU have simply decided that they are going to follow the rules that the UK wrote and agreed upon back when Galileo was first being funded.

Oh, and the EU can grant non-EU states access to the high-precision signal - on a time-limited basis and at their discretion, and can withdraw it whenever they feel like.

The difference is that EU members get it automatically, all the time.

That's what "taking back control" means. Their project, their rules. Leaving a club means you no longer get to use the bar whenever you like.

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Which? calls for compensation for users hit by Windows 10 woes

Richard 12
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Re: MS abandoning Windows??

"Stable" as in "APIs maintain near-perfect backwards compatibility"

And to be completely fair, Windows 7 and Windows 10 are also very stable as in "Don't crash and recover nicely if you do".

The problem with Win10 is the incessant forced feature upgrades, which break/move/ruin existing installs and features.

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Richard 12
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If it was only security patches

I wouldn't mind much.

But it's not. It's regular wholesale replacement of the entire OS.

April even managed to screw up my user folders. They added a new UI to move them, which screwed up the existing UI that I'd already used to relocate them onto another drive.

So now I have two "My Documents", and applications are very confused about which one to use...

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Hello, 'Apple' here, and this dodgy third-party code is A-OK with us

Richard 12
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Re: You're signing it wrong !

The "is it signed" APIs are so badly documented as to not exist.

So I'm not surprised people aren't using them correctly. Chances are that one person found a way that seemed to "work", and everyone else copy-pasted because they couldn't find anything better.

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British egg producers saddened by Google salad emoji update

Richard 12
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Re: Emoji not scalable

Won't somebody think of the standards committee?

We can't call Unicode "done" by merely ensuring it contains every glyph in every written language currently known to humankind.

That'd have an endpoint!

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PETA calls for fish friendly Swedish street signage

Richard 12
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When is a strawberry dead?

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Monday: Intel touts 28-core desktop CPU. Tuesday: AMD turns Threadripper up to 32

Richard 12
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Re: Gimme speed

@AC with the funky function calls...

If that was C or C++, you were relying on Undefined Behaviour.

Compilers are free to demonize your nasal passages if you do that.

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Richard 12
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Re: Gimme speed

^JeffyPoooh

Honestly, no. Modern compilers are really, really good.

Hand-tuned assembler is an outdated concept. It's incredibly expensive - months or years - and risks the results being wrong. It is better to spend the time doing runs and making the simulation more accurate.

Making it run faster is more generally done by two methods: Make it more efficiently parallel, and make it do less - figure out which parts of the simulation aren't actually necessary, and omit them.

Eg making sure it does things in the best order (not waiting on memory or other tasks), finding early-exit cases etc.

Domain knowledge is the best way to optimise. Only compiler writers should be looking at assembler.

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At last: Magic Leap reveals its revolutionary techno-goggles – but wait, there's a catch

Richard 12
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"holy shit I can't believe I'm seeing this"

Yes. That's because you aren't.

So far everything they have ever shown is CGFX.

They had some really awesome displays in that UN office I saw on the telly a while back.

Think the documentary was called "The Expanse". They had spaceships and everything.

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Oracle says migrating on-prem ERP to cloud now easier than upgrade

Richard 12
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If true, then it's better to leave entirely

If it really is that difficult to upgrade to version "Next" on-premises, then it's also that difficult do so in the cloud.

Unless of course they have artificially made it difficult eg by refusing to publish upgrade plans, or have artificially made it "easier" by deleting customisation features. That somebody is of course using...

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Australia wants tech companies to let cops 'n' snoops see messages without backdoors

Richard 12
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Re: Key escrow

Trivial with any image file, moving or still.

Lots of well-known techniques that are completely indistinguishable from random noise.

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Hear that? Of course it's Indiegogo's deadline for a Vega+ whooshing by

Richard 12
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Re: It's almost as though crowdfunding is a terrible idea

Nothing like VCs at all.

Venture Capitalists buy shares and have a contractual return on their investment.

The idea with VCs is that you back a lot, most of them go bankrupt and fold - and a few are big hits and make you a metric ton of money.

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Richard 12
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Re: I'm wondering...

The T&Cs are irrelevant.

What matters is the judgement. Are Indiegogo jointly and severally liable?

For example, credit card companies are. If you buy a thing with a credit card, it doesn't turn up and the supplier won't resolve it, the credit card company must refund you.

If you order something from a shop and the manufacturer fails to deliver it, the shop must refund you - not the manufacturer.

So is Indiegogo a shop?

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Apple WWDC: There's no way iOS and macOS will fully merge as one

Richard 12
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Re: OpenGL deprecated

That's insane.

This is Apple trying desperately to nail the long-dead parrot that is Metal back upright.

The only effect will be to kill a load of Mac applications.

It might speed up the uptake of Vulkan, because if you have to rewrite, you're not going pick the burning platform.

At this rate, MoltenVK will be the only API used on Apple devices.

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Indiegogo grants ZX Spectrum reboot firm another two weeks to send a console

Richard 12
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Re: All this fuss!

I suspect the easy availability of emulators is why all the backers thought this was real.

As far as I can tell, the only technically difficult part of this project was getting the rights. Which they had.

Quite how they managed to screw the rest up is beyond me. Unless they never intended to ship anything of course, but that can't possibly be the case. Can it?

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Richard 12
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Re: The gift that keeps on giving

I am sure that Indiegogo also think that Sky probably have nothing to do with it, that's why they've asked for the contact details.

The other issue is that RCL probably have no seizeable assets at all by now, thus sending in the bailiffs will simply end the whole sorry affair.

Indiegogo must be really quite scared, because this pre-order-gone-bad could close them down as well.

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Facebook's Trending news box follows fired freelancers out the door

Richard 12
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Re: See what's trending

There's a difference between choosing to visit one or more given "news" sites, and having "news" thrust at you by some aggregator when you're looking for something else.

If you visit the Guardian or Russia Today, you know what biases to expect.

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Fake NIPS slip site scandalizes AI world

Richard 12
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Re: Oh. Noes.

While diverting some to the local quarry?

If 1 in 30 are eaten by bobcats, the reviews are still 97% positive

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Dawn spacecraft to get up-close and personal with dwarf planet Ceres

Richard 12
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Re: "... ten times closer ..."?

1/10 the distance, 1/5 the temperature (or 1/5 the heat, they're different), 1/60 the brightness.

Probably. Could also mean reducing the distance by ten times the amount they previously reduced it.

I hate that kind of phrasing too, as there's many ways to misinterpret it.

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Is Microsoft about to git-merge with GitHub? Rumors suggest: Yes

Richard 12
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Re: Employment terms

Everyone simply leaves.

The nature of git is that all centralised servers are trivially replaced, because you've all got a complete backup already.

The only question is selecting a replacement.

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Your F-35s need spare bits? Computer says we'll have you sorted in... a couple of years

Richard 12
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They learned the techniques with the Harriet

Come to a halt beside the carrier then once in a stable hover, slide slideways over and onto the deck.

That way, if you miss, only one plane goes in the drink and there's no kaboom.

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Richard 12
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Re: I'll have some of that business please

Depends.

A1 can kill all your competitors, leaving you free to A2 later.

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TSB meltdown latest: Facepalming reaches critical mass as Brits get strangers' bank letters

Richard 12
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Re: Why do they still have customers?

Because TSB are in such a meltdown that leaving takes weeks.

And in some cases kills the customer - several suppliers with Direct Debits with people who've closed their TSB accounts have been sent letters saying the account holder had died.

That mess is also quite hard to resolve.

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Who had ICANN suing a German registrar over GDPR and Whois? Congrats, it's happening

Richard 12
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Re: Controller and Processor

If ICANN are the controller, then they are wilfully breaching the GDPR and admitting it by bringing the case.

If that's the argument they bring, then they are asking the German regulator to immediately impose the highest possible fine.

Howvere amusing that might be, the last missive sent out by ICANN specifically stated that the registrars - in this case Tucows - are the data controllers.

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Richard 12
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Re: Quite smart to do it in Germany

No, it's foolish because it's a slam dunk instant fail in Germany.

ICANN will lose, instantly with no appeal.

In other EU countries they might have stood a chance, but Germany have suffered the consequences of unnecessary data collection. Millions dead leaves a long shadow.

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Chief EU negotiator tells UK to let souped-up data adequacy dream die

Richard 12
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Re: It's become increasingly clear ..

It's also clear that it's going to end the Tory party.

Whatever May agrees to is going to annoy at least half the Tory base, and split the party in twain.

Cameron's legacy is a poorer UK, May's is a split and irrelevant party.

The only question is which party will replace them. It doesn't seem likely to be the Lib Dems, so perhaps the Greens?

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BOFH: Their bright orange plumage warns other species, 'Back off! I'm dangerous!'

Richard 12
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Re: It is NOT health AND safety

I dunno. Bright orange skin doesn't sound healthy to me.

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Richard 12
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Re: Yellow vs Orange hi-vis

I prefer black.

Yes, black hi-vis is a real thing.

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The great wearables myth busted: Apps never, ever mattered

Richard 12
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Re: Almost no one

While I can read a digital display in similar conditions.

As long as the hands are sufficiently wide or the font sufficiently thick, either watch can be read with equal alacrity.

Large public timepieces are perhaps better analogue, but ones intended to be read from within a few feet are equally readable either way.

Except the digital one is more precise, of course.

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International Maritime Organisation turns salty gaze on regulating robotic shipping

Richard 12
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Re: ColRegs

Depends on your definition of lookout.

A radar system can easily run 24 hours a day.

Won't pick up a RIB, but a container ship crew isn't going to notice one of those splashing under the bow anyway.

There's a reason yachts put up a reflector.

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GDPRmageddon: They think it's all over! Protip, it has only just begun

Richard 12
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Re: If you're not with us...

Nobody is exempt from the rules. Nobody at all.

Every business and every organisation holds private data that is covered by GDPR.

That's because every business has customers and every organisation has members.

You need a data controller and you need to justify holding the personal data that you hold.

That's trivial to do if you're sensible - you need employee names and bank details so you can pay them, and you need supplier contact details so you can contact them about the stuff you buy.

But your marketing dept really needs to look at what they do and store, and if you have a "Big Data" dept... Close it down, quick.

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GDPR for everyone, cries Microsoft: We'll extend Europe's privacy rights worldwide

Richard 12
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Re: Windows 10 April update is in breach

"Info about the websites you browse and how you use apps and features"

Its fairly hard to get more private.

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Richard 12
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Windows 10 April update is in breach

I have the photos.

It is "Opt Out" of the tracking (pre-ticked checkboxes) and still does "basic" telemetry even if you opt "Out". It doesn't say what Basic telemetry means.

Opt Out is illegal under GDPR. If they don't push out an update, they are breaking the law.

Also the checkboxes are deliberately confusing.

Dear Microsoft, thanks for solving the EU debt crisis singlehanded. That multi-billion dollar fine will be really handy.

Such a shame that your lawyers are idiots.

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About to install the Windows 10 April 2018 Update? You might want to wait a little bit longer

Richard 12
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Re: Metered connection

Except for updates that Microsoft deem "important", and steal your bandwidth anyway.

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FBI's flawed phone tally blamed on programming error. 7,800 unbreakable mobes? Er, um...

Richard 12
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Counting things that have unique IDs

Oh my, that's so very difficult. So very difficult indeed.

Perhaps we have found the cryptography "expert" the FBI used?

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Want to know what an organisation is really like? Visit the restroom

Richard 12
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Clickshare?

Hates it.

It's cheaper and better to run a VGA and HDMI and have done with it.

For some reason the really thin laptops (cough Apple/Surface) don't have either, but anyone witg a thin laptop isnused to carrying a dozen hugely bulky adapters anyway.

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Tech support made the news after bomb squad and police showed up to 'defuse' leaky UPS

Richard 12
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Re: Free UPS!

There are isolation transformers because that's part of the Ethernet standard.

In smaller kit the transformer is often embedded inside the RJ45 socket.

Also, a lot of these isolation transformers are in a package that looks like a bulky chip.

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Brit ISPs get their marker pens out: Speed advertising's about to change

Richard 12
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Contention

Virgin tend to massively oversell a region, then take a few years to add enough capacity to handle the connections they're charging for.

I expect that the Which? average is accurate, and that Ofcom only tested places where Virgin did add capacity.

After all, Virgin almost certainly know where and when Ofcom do the tests.

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Capita cost-cutting on NHS England contract 'put patients at risk' – spending watchdog

Richard 12
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NI is just an employment tax

It all goes into the big pot.

Also, NI payments don't even come close to covering the cost of pensions and the NHS.

In 2016/17 total NI payments were £125 billion*.

The NHS planned spending was £124 billion. (Actual will have been higher, budget was £120 bn)

Pension spending was roughly £111 bn, out of a total welfare spending of £264 bn.

In short, National Insurance contributions usually can't cover the cost of the NHS, let alone pensions as well.

It's really paid for by general taxation and Government borrowing. Ring-fencing NI would actually reduce the budget!

And yes, state pensions cost almost as much as the NHS. Welfare has by far the biggest budget.

Source: www.ons.gov.uk

* using 1bn = 1000 million. Sorry.

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Zero arrests, 2 correct matches, no criminals: London cops' facial recog tech slammed

Richard 12
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Re: Surely though

94 of whom were not a person of interest, yet were stopped, searched and otherwise inconvenienced because the computer said so.

When we already know that the Met have great difficulty in avoiding murdering innocent civilians, promoting those responsible all the way instead of firing them for gross misconduct, does one trust that none of those 94 will even survive the night?

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