* Posts by AndyS

761 posts • joined 23 Jun 2009

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Self-driving car devs face 6-month backlog on vital $85,000 LIDAR kit

AndyS
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Re: Scaleable and Secure?

Ah, the usual comment on new tech:

"I bet they haven't thought of X," where X is an obvious topic I just though of, as a non expert.

I'll give you the answer: Yes, they have already considered that.

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Uber is a taxi company, not internet, European Court of Justice advised

AndyS
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Re: But

> Is that a cake or a meringue?

No yer right, it's a cake.

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French drone bods Parrot wheel out 'prosumer' division

AndyS
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> drones were a passing fad with consumers

Wow, there's a statement.

Reminds me of some other statements: "No wireless. Less space than a Nomad. Lame." or "nobody will ever need more than 640k of ram"

Fact is DJI is doing extremely well, and other competitors are struggling to keep up.

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Fortran greybeards: Get your walking frames and shuffle over to NASA

AndyS
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If you have some old code, and you need to find someone with a very specific set of skills to modify it, isn't the usual route to, you know, offer a paid job? Of which I'd guess this is maybe 1/4 the expected annual salary, at the low end.

Can I try this if I have something I need done? Come and cut my grass! There's a chance you'll win a portion of £5!

Come and stack shelves in my shop for a year! I'll maybe give you a bit of £2/hour at the end of the year!

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Another AI assistant... It's getting crowded in here, isn't it, Siri?

AndyS
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I'm still lost.

Maybe I'm old fashioned, but I don't want to talk to my tech.

In my mind, that killed Google Glass. It will kill any tech which primarily interacts by voice. The social awkwardness of having to talk out loud when in public, especially when quickly trying to find a bit of info ("who is that actress?"; "what is 23C in F?"; "Buy 4 boxes of plasters and check my bank account") which will make people around you curious about what you're doing - just no.

So, although there may be a small niche where these things might be useful, I can't ever see them becoming a major way to interact with technology.

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That YouTube ad boycott had square-root of sod-all effect on Google's insane cash machine

AndyS
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So, earnings per share were $7.73, which is a pretty solid number.

But then at the end of the article it turns out shares cost $909... So, a return on investment of 0.85%.

A more reasonable 3% roi would value the shares at around $250.

What is going on there then? Is this just the normal massive over valuation of tech companies? Is Google just seen as a safe place to park money and forget it exists?

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Drone maker DJI quietly made large chunks of Iraq, Syria no-fly zones

AndyS
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Re: So they just roll their own

Very true. A basic quadcopter can be made cheaply and, and with none of the geofencing. If you want it a bit more capable (ie with GPS and autonomous flight modes) you are probably looking at a few hundred pounds each.

However, they could also just disable the geofencing in their existing fleet of phantoms (of which they seem to have a lot).

However, this move will have disrupted their immediate use, and appears to have been rolled out in a coordinated way, to target their use in Mosul during the drive to take it back. I guess if it worked at all (I wonder how often ISIS updates the firmware on their drones?), it will only work once - next time, they will have geofencing disabled already (if not previously).

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Seagate launches non-flying disk drive for drones

AndyS
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> Although I'm not sure how this product is specialised to drones - there have been similar devices to this targeted at photographers for years

Look at the picture - it's branded dji. That alone is probably the whole point, as it allows dji to sell them along side their drones.

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Sysadmin 'trashed old bosses' Oracle database with ticking logic bomb'

AndyS
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Re: Proof?

I guess that's what the court case is for. But bear with me for a while here.

I have worked in SQL development, but I'd be damned if I could get a random laptop to connect to a random company's network. Let's assume this guy is similar to me - knows a company laptop can connect to the company network, but wouldn't know where to start to get another laptop to. The file? Sure, it could be transferred, don't know why they would bother mentioning it, unless by "file" they actually mean it had an auto-log in system of some sort, or saved passwords, or something similar, more than just a .txt.

Now let's assume the company network keeps logs of what computers are connected (which seems reasonable), by what means (eg which wifi access point), and who those laptops were issued to. Let's also assume they have some CCTV, hence the accusation of trespassing. This all seems pretty likely.

We already know he used someone else's account, presumably for a test, before he left.

From those bits of information, it is pretty trivial to build a fairly damning case, and of course there may well be plenty of important bits of information missing.

Sure, any one of those could be explained away (mac spoofing, can't prove he has the laptop, maybe he stayed out of CCTV view, maybe he had a legit reason to use the other person's account leading up to his departure...) but together, it seems to paint a pretty obvious picture.

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Gordon Ramsay's in-laws admit plot to hack sweary celeb chef's biz

AndyS
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Re: It all sounds

You should probably take it with a pinch of salt.

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Customer satisfaction is our highest priority… OK, maybe second-highest… or third...

AndyS
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"extra-hot fair trade soya decaf caramel mint chocka mocha focka carbonated Bulgarian snow forest chai espresso latte plus vegan sprinkles and a twist of lemming"

You should have got the vegan one. You monster.

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Pong, anyone? How about Pong on a vintage oscilloscope?

AndyS
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I once built a circuit to manually control an early 1990s Toyota automatic gearbox, using 4000 series logic gates. It was an interesting project. Lots of admiration for going a step further and using the bare transistors to do something like this though!

ps - in the end I decided that the ECU was better at changing gears than me, so I removed it all again.

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Euro Patent Office hit with wave of anti-Battistelli letters

AndyS
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Re: "[..] Admin Council chair Jesper Kongstad who is attempting to protect Battistelli .."

I imagine he has made a decision between two options: a) abandon him (and be sacked by him now), or b) attempt to prop him up for as long as possible (and be sacked along side him).

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Amazon relinquishes data from Echo that could have dropped eaves on a killing

AndyS
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Re: If I were a judge, I'd call Alexa to testify as a witness...

"Alexa, place your hand on the Bible..."

"You have ordered a Bible."

"No Alexa, I need you to swear..."

"I don't know how to do that. Would you like to order another Bible?"

"No Alexa, I categorical..."

"Thank you for subscribing to Cat Facts! Did you know the average cat sleeps for 18 hours per day?"

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Linus Torvalds lashes devs who 'screw all the rules and processes' and send him 'crap'

AndyS
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Re: "Does the chip vendor publish enough to let someone write a driver?"

> And why should they? It's their IP, not yours

You're an idiot, right? The man was complaining that his wifi doesn't work on Linux. The response is that, the vast majority of time there are missing drivers, it's because the manufacturer hasn't published specs, making it impossible to write drivers. And you ask "why should they?"

So, are you on the side of the guy who wants his computer to work with Linux? Or the side of the people saying it's difficult to do without manufacturer support? At the moment it seems like you're just... stupid.

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Google's troll-destroying AI can't cope with typos

AndyS
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Re: Details

No, one is a perfectly normal reaction to current world events, the other is offensive. Unless they sneezed.

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Frustrated by reboot-happy Windows 10? Creators Update hopes to take away the pain

AndyS
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Re: Yes, the Windows 10 updates are pretty awful

I've left a laptop in a drawer for years before, pulled it out, turned it on, and it just worked. But it's running Linux, not some abomination love child of a pickpocket and a baby sitter.

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AndyS
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Re: Hmmm

Surely that's a user problem, not something an OS should be randomly rebooting to enforce?

If this is a large corporate problem, and the PCs involved are just office desktop type machines, why not enforce a policy of turning machines off over the weekend?

Allowing MS to do it instead, at their discretion not yours or your users', seems like a crazy way forward.

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AndyS
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> "We also heard that unexpected reboots are disruptive if they happen at the wrong time."

Oh, really? So after 30 odd years of OS development, you hadn't figured out that randomly rebooting a computer without warning or user interaction counts as a BAD thing?

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You're Donald Trump's sysadmin. You've got data leaks coming out the *ss. What to do

AndyS
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Re: How about:

This whole article reads a bit like an attempt to make a pig farm kosher.

If the man at the top uses an outdated and unsecured Samsung Andorid phone to tweet insults about whatever bollocks is stopping him sleeping at 3am, what chance does any IT department have?

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Gulp! Drones dodge spray from California's gaping moist glory hole

AndyS
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Re: For UK readers see Ladybower

For any other Northern Irish readers here, there's a rather beautiful example, with laminar flow, similar to the article, in the Silent Valley Reservoir. It's so close to the dam it makes it tempting to try and jump in - Google Maps link here, with it intimidatingly visible.

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Smart Hosting offers up service credit in bid to hang on to clients

AndyS
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Never heard of them.

No doubt the merger was talked up with language like "streamlining customer support" and "providing a first class customer experience" though.

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What does a complex AI model look like? Here's some Friday eye candy from UK biz Graphcore

AndyS
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Can someone explain

Simply, in a few words, what the word "graph" means in this article?

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Republicans send anti-Signal signal to US EPA

AndyS
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Re: EPA

@ a_yank_lurker

So, do you think the Repubs plan to replace it with something more fit for purpose?

Because honestly, the current drive is more like me burning your house down, because the toilet is dirty. Where are you going to sleep tomorrow? Not my problem.

Bear in mind, before answering, that the same group of lunatics are proposing to get rid of the department of education, and simultaneously defund any state-provided health care which can provide family planning and contraception.

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Inside Confide, the chat app 'secretly used by Trump aides': OpenPGP, OpenSSL, and more

AndyS
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@phuzz

Oh good grief.

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AndyS
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Re: "Hate my life"

You know what, being CIO for Trump's White House has two aspects to the job. The first, the actual tech bit, would perhaps be pretty easy.

Then there's the second bit, having to interact with Trump and his group of delinquent idiots.

I can see why any sane person would hate their life if they had to do that on a daily basis.

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NASA picks three Martian wet patches for 2020 splashdown

AndyS
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Re: Exciting times.

How far through those 250 tonnes is it? Is it nearly finished? Is this a one-off, or is it going to do it again? Which planet is this happening on?

There are so many questions to answer. Someone should definitely send a probe.

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Apple joins one wireless power group, the other one responds with so-happy forced grin

AndyS
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Re: Mis-named Wireless

> The systems are not wireless as we know it, but ... need a power cable, power supply and power outlet.

What, unlike a wireless router? Do they run on magic fairy dust without any cables or power? I must need to upgrade, my current one has multiple plugs and wires coming out the back of it.

I'd call anything wireless which connects to reference device without needing plugged in. And in this case, placing a phone/tablet/watch/mouse etc on a pad (and not plugging it in) is clearly wireless.

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AndyS
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Re: Splitters

I believe the article has been altered to include your joke.

The names do all seem a bit repetitive. Which I suppose is why this group chose the particularly stupid "Airpower" name. I suppose they could have made it worse, by including a "turbo" or "max" in there somewhere.

To be honest, I don't really see the need for 3 standards, and don't really care what ends up dominating. Knowing manufacturers' desire to control their bits of kit, it will likely take massive proliferation of different "standards", and then something like the EU ruling on micro-usb connectors for phones, before anything consumer-friendly actually happens.

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The Mail vs Wikipedia: They're more alike than they'd ever admit

AndyS
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Re: Looks bad for Wikipedia

You say that, but the difference is intention. The Mail strives for sensationalist bullshit to sell to the prejudices of small minded Little Englanders, and occasionally slips in something resembling a retelling of current affairs to convince them it is educating them. Wikipedia strives for independence, balance and accuracy, and occasionally makes a mistake. The two are simply not on the same level.

Did you see the Mail article recently about the poor lady who went into early labour while on a plane to London? She had an emergency delivery of quadruplets, two of whom died shortly afterwards. How did the Mail treat this woman? Well, I'll give you a hint. She was black, and Nigerian.

Show me anything in Wikipedia that compares to that, or to the "Enemies of the People" bullshit, and I'll listen.

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Samsung battery factory bursts into flame in touching Note 7 tribute

AndyS
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Re: Fake News

Pat, li-ion batteries don't go on fire when they get wet, and the recommended action in the case of a li-ion fire is to douse it with large amounts of water (or place it in a bucket) to cool the surrounding cells and any other combustibles and stop the fire spreading. See the FAA document here.

There is this odd urban myth that just because it has lithium in it, it will spontaneously combust when it gets wet, but this simply isn't true. The quantities of metallic lithium are very small, and very well sealed in plastic etc.

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Euro bloc blocks streaming vid geoblocks

AndyS
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Re: Too little too late

Moan moan moan.

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Facebook investors yell at CEO: Get the Zuck out of our boardroom!

AndyS
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Yes, I think in this case you're right. The interests of the largest shareholders (who will be in for the long haul) and smaller ones (who can come and go more easily) _should_ be aligned, but if they are not, it is likely that the larger shareholders have the interest of the company at heart, while the smaller ones only the short term profit.

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Phishing: Another thing we can blame on Brexit

AndyS
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Re: Oh perleees...

> And the evidence for this assertion is what exactly

Simple. People running phishing attacks are looking for idiots.

Middle of the year, Brexit happened, which let them know the UK is a ripe target - attacks increased.

Later in the year, Trump happened, which showed them an even riper one - attacks declined.

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Juno how to adjust a broken Jupiter probe's orbit?

AndyS
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I love how often redundant systems on spacecraft end up being used, and how often the whole thing seems to hang on a Heath Robinson bodge.

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Tails Linux farewells 32-bit processors with imminent version 3.0

AndyS
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Sad to lose old hardware

While I fully understand these decisions, and would make the same decision myself, it is a shame to have to abandon fully functional hardware due to a lack of software.

I have an ultraportable laptop from 2007, which is still in good working order (with a bit more memory and an SSD). I've been using it for setting up and in-field configuring of a couple of quadcopters. I run Ubuntu on it, which still supports 32 bit, but many of the specific programmes I need to run use it for are Chrome apps. Chrome, and hence Chromium, no longer support 32 bit, so it cannot run them. So despite being perfectly capable of the job, it's now basically obsolete.

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Protest against Trump's US travel ban leaves ‪PasswordsCon‬ in limbo

AndyS
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Re: Alternatively...

> the 11 countries that totally ban people with an Israel passport entering their countries

Sorry, which of those 11 countries is he hosting a conference it?

Oh, none? Then in what way is "other countries are worse" a defence?

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New measurement alerts! Badgers, great white sharks and the Lindisfarne Gospel

AndyS
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There's something fishy about that standards page.

The definitive guide to the speed of a sheep in a vacuum concludes that:

> The Vulture Central standard velocity for a sheep in a vacuum is, therefore, c/(50+0), or 5,995 km/sec

However, the units converter pegs it at 2998 km/sec.

Additionally, the volume of the known universe is missing entirely.

Reg, has your standards bureau been infiltrated?

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As the world quakes over Trump, CGI has dollar signs in its eyes

AndyS
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Screw them.

Screw the lot of them. Profiteering bastards, leeching money out of society based on the fears and prejudices of the ignorant.

When the only people who stand to make money are arms dealers and tax consultants, the very humanity of the country has gone to shit.

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EU whacks first nail into mobile roaming charges' coffin

AndyS
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Re: Cue the Mobile companies

> £80B contract cancellation charges

In 2 years, that will be worth, what, about £3.20 in today's money? Sounds like a pretty good deal.

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Kylie withdraws from Kylie trademark fight, leaving Kylie to profit from… existing?

AndyS
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Re: 30 year career? Ha ha... seriously, she should be so lucky.

So... You fancy her, is that what you're saying?

I guess she defined a period, in the same sense as the Spice Girls and Take That after her. The difference is that, being a solo act, she still exists, and is still in charge of, and actively managing, her own image.

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Trump's FBI boss, Attorney General picks reckon your encryption's getting backdoored

AndyS
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Re: Back to MD5, et. al.

Bob, you really are a bit simple, aren't you?

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Irish townsfolk besieged by confused smut channel callers

AndyS
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Wait a minute...

Ireland may be a little behind the times, but whole towns don't usually have one phone number between them.

I mean, how does one go about phoning "Westport?" Or does this grumble-line happen to operate exactly the same number of phone lines as there are in Westport, with conveniently overlapping sequences?

Presumably, there is one poor person in Westport who is innundated. And the solution, which would be quite easy (and it's far from the first time this has happened), is for him/her to change number.

But I suppose that wouldn't make such an interesting story.

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Assange reverse-ferrets on promise to fly to US post-Manning clemency

AndyS
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Re: Almost wonder if he has some sort of deal with Trump

That's a nice theory.

Sadly I'm beginning to suspect the reality is much duller - he's not an American, he's not in America, and he's not the source of the leaks he published. So perhaps the Americans simply don't care as much about him as he (and many of us) assumed a few years ago?

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AndyS
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That's clearly what he is saying he meant.

However in Manning's shoes, I'd be pretty happy with the current situation.

In all honestly, it's a good way to handle it. The law was still broken, but the punishment has been dropped. Assange doesn't look good in getting 99% of what he was wishing for, and acting insulted over the 1%.

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Google harvests school kids' web histories for ads, claims its Mississippi nemesis

AndyS
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Re: Bah!

"It is disturbing to think that one of the world's most profitable corporations would try to make even more money by deceiving parents and taking advantage of Mississippi school children,"

Isn't it more disturbing to think of an entire state auctioning off the education of their children to the highest bidder, bringing one of the most profitable commercial advertising companies in the world into contact with one of the richest, most profitable markets (American children), and then acting all surprised and upset when they try and push some adverts?

Bloody corrupt idiots.

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Japan's terrifying techno-toilets will be made foreigner friendly, vow makers

AndyS
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Re: Clarification

The answer might be in the translation in the second link at the foot of the article?

> Button (おしり) --> Water spray to clean your bum

> Button (ムーブ) --> Have the spray move in a forward and backwards manner

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Search for MH370 called off after new theory about resting place is ruled out

AndyS
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> Except pilots have a seperate oxygen supply for just such an eventuallity and besides, none of those would have caused the plane to do an almost 180 degree course reversal in stages over a period of a couple of hours

Please, read the link about the Helios flight - you'd be amazed at how badly people function with low-level hypoxia. I've been there, and it is extremely strange - despite acknowledging the symptoms, my reaction was a shrug, "oh well," and carry on with what I was doing - no remedial action.

Oxygen deprivation isn't an on/off switch. Let's say, for example, that cabin pressurisation failed for whatever reason, and the pilots were using their oxygen, but didn't realise they were suffering hypoxia. Maybe the bottles were low, maybe there was a leak, maybe they just weren't using it correctly if at all. Or maybe there was a slow enough depressurisation that they just didn't react correctly, and took a long period to decline to unconsciousness. Re-routing would be a perfectly believable action. Who knows what was going through their heads.

Maybe these scenarios seem unlikely, but something very unlikely has happened - so the explanation is also bound to be pretty unlikely.

I still agree that a deliberate act seems likely, perhaps more so than the scenario above, but unfounded statements of one explanation being the "only" logical one are simply wrong. As above, it is a tragedy the plane won't be found, primarily for the families of those involved but also for the lack of ability to learn from the accident and, potentially, to prevent a repeat.

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AndyS
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> The only logical explanation

Or oxygen deprivation, or decompression, or poisoning of the cabin air, all of which could be caused by mechanical faults, sabotage, terrorism etc.

I would rule out terrorism as nobody has claimed it (thus defeating the point of terrorism). Pilot suicide (whether or not the captain of the plane was in charge) seems quite likely, but so does failure of the cabin air system - see also Helios Flight 522 for example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helios_Airways_Flight_522

Short answer is there is currently not really any really good explanation, which was one good reason to want to find the wreckage.

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Weaky-leaks: Furious fans roast Assange in web interview from hell

AndyS
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Re: @ AndyS

@ Eric Olson

The interesting thing about Republican voters, who put Trump in power, but don't know that repealing Obamacare will leave them without insurance (they're insured through ACA after all - totally different thing) is the reaction of the rest of the world to the harm that these people will suffer.

It goes like this:

Oh well.

The harm Trump will do to the rest of the world, and the 50% of America that resembles a 1st world country, is everyone's concern, and the duty of every sane person to stand up against. But the self-defeating, uneducated, mouth breathing, racist rednecks? Never mind. Let them get their benefits cut, the insurance stopped, and their jobs exported, that's what they've voted for.

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