* Posts by sandman

543 posts • joined 8 Jul 2009

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Squirrel sinks teeth into SAN cabling, drives Netadmin nuts

sandman

How to blow up a rat

I worked for one organisation that needed a lot of electricity. Everything was controlled from a shipping container outside the building and walking past one day I noticed smoke coming out of the top of the doors. This is generally considered a bad thing.

Cautiously cracking open the door revealed nothing but thin smoke and an appalling smell. Getting behind the control panels revealed small fragments of singed rat everywhere and a tiny paw print on one of the 440 volt bus-bars...

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Murder in space: NASA orders astronauts to KILL cripples – then fire bodies back to Earth

sandman

Dinner table conversation

"What did you do at work today darling?"

"Oh, not much, just broke the legs of 30 mice."

"That's nice darl...wait, WTF!"

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Fancy that – the sharing economy lobby doesn't speak for the sharers

sandman

Re: " Until the "digital era" we've treated humans differently"

"It looks the current idea is to return there...." To be fair, I think we're already there. How many people own what share of the world's total wealth? It's lords and peasants (or serfs, churls, helots, choose your comparison) time again children.

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Omg, that is, like, sooo 2007... Retromania set to grip this year's MWC

sandman

I'm agog with indifference...

5
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Microsoft ups Surface slab prices for Brits. Darn weak pound, eh?

sandman

Re: Just say 'sod off MS I ain't paying that much'

Apple already put up their prices - MS are just the latest in a long line. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-37799235

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/01/17/apples-uk-app-store-prices-will-rise-25-percent-following-brexit-currency-fluctuations.html

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All of Blighty's attack submarines are out of action – report

sandman

Re: When are we goint to stop pretending...

Sorry. I'm going to have to disagree with your use of the word "led". We have some world-class officers and men, expensively trained and very experienced in many cases. It's the political and bureaucratic end (let's not call it leadership) that is sorely lacking.

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Grumpy Trump trumped, now he's got the hump: Muslim ban beaten back by appeals court

sandman

Re: Nah!

That should be "bleeding heart", personally mine doesn't have vocal chords, so "bleating" would be tricky.

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sandman

It's all a media conspiracy!

Damn, should have put that all in CAPS! I'd like to thank the Illuminati who obviously control the media for secretly supporting Trump. Look at CNN's ratings, the massive spike in New York Times sales, etc, since he was elected. You might think his tweets criticizing them are sincere - not so, he's being played like the sock puppet he is.

It's also given the rest of the world a chance to both laugh at and feel superior to the United States - not something that happens very often. The rest of the world's media are raking it in. there's never been a better time to be a satirist or cartoonist, petition sites are booming and every second social media post includes the word Trump.

I rest my case your Honour (ps, please don't send it to appeal).

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sandman

Re: Shame on you all

Nice bit of satire there :-)

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Vapists rejoice! E-cigs lower cancer risk (if you stop smoking, duh)

sandman

Re: Less bad

Of course it's driven by ideology. There's very little policy driven by science unless it confirms the ideology of the ruling party (in most countries, maybe all).

9
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The Life and Times of Lester Haines

sandman

A very sad loss indeed.

2
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Brexflation hits Lenovo's Phab2

sandman

More to come

I'll take the role of a hypothetical foreign seller of stuff. I notice that the pound has devalued somewhat, so I charge extra to cover my loss of profit. Of course I'll add a bit, hopefully you won't notice that. (Oh, if I make stuff in the UK I'll be paying more for bits from foreign - so will do the same). Later on, any change to trade policies will obviously affect me (even if they won't, but hey, let's not waste an opportunity). I'll look doleful and put the prices up again. Finally, I'll add that little bit. Since everyone else will be doing the same, you won't even be able to single me out, unless you want to stop buying stuff. Oh, that will include food by the way - just saying.

For those of us old enough, remember the price rises when we switched to decimal currency?

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Microsoft boffins think VR visions will rival drugs by 2027

sandman

Yes! :)

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'Pavement power' - The bad idea that never seems to die

sandman

"You're not treading on it right".

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Invasion of the virus-addled lightbulbs (and other banana stories)

sandman

Why Pinky? What are we doing tomorrow?

"Taking over the world as usual, Brains." One internet point for a good Charles Stross reference ;-)

3
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BOFH: There are no wrong answers, just wrong questions. Mmm, really wrong ones

sandman

Love these tests

I remember going for one job and being given "the Test". I was delighted, it was the standard Myers-Briggs, which for some obscure reason I'd been researching. I just asked HR what personality they'd like me to be and got on with it. Note: These were intelligent HR people with a sense of humour. They knew it was bollocks, they knew I knew it was bollocks and I knew that, etc. Got the job.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/brain-flapping/2013/mar/19/myers-briggs-test-unscientific

14
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Londoners react with horror to Tube Chat initiative

sandman

Re: I did it once

I met an old friend from my home town on the Tube, completely by accident. Naturally we got chatting. Getting off (At the station! OMG, how could you even think that!) she lost a contact lens and we spent the next half hour trying to find it. Last time I've talked to anyone on the Tube. I'm the one with the in-ear phones playing metal, reading a Kindle, with the FOAD badge. If you look at me I'll stare back and smile and smile and smile. You have been warned ;-)

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User couldn't open documents or turn on PC, still asked for reference as IT expert

sandman

Is it on?

Before being temporarily diverted into technical support (my admiration goes to just about everybody involved in that, I haven't got the patience) I thought "Have you switched it on?" was a stupid question. After the nth time of seeing just that.... My favourite was. "My monitor doesn't work!" "Have you switched it on?" "Of course I have, do you think I'm stupid?" "OK, is it plugged in to the back of the computer?" "I've bloody checked, I'm telling you, it's BROKEN!" "Have you turned it on at the mains?" "Oh".....

15
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Pull the plug! PowerPoint may kill my conference audience

sandman

If it can go wrong...

My favourites:

My first ever presentation with an old fashioned slide projector and 200 people. The projector jams completely, took me years to get over my newly acquired stage fright.

A similar presentation, this time with a quick-thinking female colleague. A glass slide jams in the works, so she rushes into the venue kitchen, grabs a breadknife and saws the offending slice in half so it can be removed.

A global webinar to launch an author's new book. I set up a Centra session in advance (as requested) and am ready to rock. Upstairs they have decided to set up a different session which doesn't work (because they have no idea what they're doing). The author blames me, I threaten to defenestrate him.

My brilliant other half is at an international conference. After hours of PowerPoint presentations she wanders on stage with some notes and just talks to the audience. Voted best presentation of the day.

6
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The Rise, Fall and Return of TomTom

sandman

Re: gopro bandit

That'll be the rare "Bonsai Blue Whale" then.

7
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Making us pay tax will DESTROY EUROPE, roars Apple's Tim Cook

sandman

"A bastard bloody ukefuckinglele". That gets an upvote ;)

6
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Oculus Rift will reach UK in September – and will cost more than two PS4s

sandman

Classic

"Virtual reality: Because one meaningless and uncaring universe isn't enough". Ah, what a lovely misanthropic article. You could reuse the strapline for any articles about the concept of the multiverse. :-)

6
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300 million pelicans? Pah. What 6 billion plastic bags really weigh

sandman

Re: Niche scenario - but annoying regardless

Had a similar problem with a trashed knee. I used a rucksack for the heavy stuff (bottles mostly ;-) and a "bag for life" for stuff that didn't want squashing. Worked fine with a stick. I still use the same system now, although without the stick.

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UK govt to launch a tech creche for military-focused startups

sandman

Re: Giant Airships!

and shark tanks!

3
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Milk IN the teapot: Innovation or abomination?

sandman

Impressive

There is a certain existential beauty in getting everything so wrong simultaneously. Either that or they were asking to be put n the Darwin Award shortlist courtesy of the editorial team.

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Los Desaparecidos di Disruption: The Final Days of Conservative 2.0

sandman

Nyerlathotep should have been there already but sadly he's travelling by Southern Rail.

7
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One in five consumers upgraded to Win10 for free instead of buying a PC

sandman

Nice Microsoft

No, for once, really! Two PCs and a laptop. The old laptop upgraded from Vista through to Win 10 (OK, it's dog slow, but I did it just because). One desktop from Win 7 through to Win 10 and one from Win 8 to 10. No new hardware required apart from a scanner as the manufacturers decided that new drivers would be superfluous - bastards.

Until anything goes terminally wrong with the PCs I don't see the need to upgrade for, well, ever really.

2
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Wannabe Prime Minister Andrea Leadsom thinks all websites should be rated – just like movies

sandman

Re: The obvious problem with this

Ah, I have some .eu domain names, will I have to leave them (or just offer to host "adult" content for deprived Brits)? ;-)

3
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Idiot brings gun-shaped iPhone to airport

sandman

Re: Stanstead?

Oi, leave Rainham Marshes alone. Go bury the bodies somewhere that's not an RSPB reserve. ;-)

6
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Behold the ROBOT RECTUM... medics' relief

sandman

Truly dreadful

"The medics trialling the robo butt gave it a thumbs up." Possibly one of the most appalling puns of all time - I'm annoyed I didn't think of it.

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Blighty's EU science funding will remain unchanged until new PM triggers Article 50

sandman

Not listening

Sorry, apparently we're fed-up with experts telling us what to do, even if they are rocket scientists (other brands of scientist are available).

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Bank tech boss: Where we're going, we don't need mainframes

sandman

What could possibly go wrong?

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Apple and Android wearables: What iceberg? It’s full steam ahead!

sandman

Apple Genius

My ex-boss had been contemplating buying an Apple watch for ages (he likes visible status symbols) but even he couldn't find a use-case for one. He was finally sold one by, in this case, an aptly named Apple Genius. His line of patter was simple yet effective. "Of course you don't need one, nobody NEEDS one."

9
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Lester Haines: RIP

sandman

Sincere condolences to his family and colleagues. We'll all miss him as ell.

4
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HR botches redundancy so chap scores year-long paid holiday

sandman

The Real Ale Defence

I'm not sure this method is replicable, but...

I once worked for a part of a large company UK that was "restructuring". A goodly number of us IT bods were facing the chop. For various reasons our head of IT worked in the New York branch and she was flown over to select the victims. We were asked who wanted to see her first - cue deadly hush - so I volunteered.

On arrival she was whisked away into a meeting, which overran, so she sent me a message saying we could postpone, have our chat in the office after the meeting, or meet in the pub afterwards. Well, duh. My boss happens to be a fan of real ale, so after a couple of pints, my job was saved. Those who hesitated meeting her had to face the music next day when jetlag and a mild hangover had set in. My line manager was one of those chopped, thereby leaving a vacancy, which I was promoted to fill. I've been fond of Old Speckled Hen* ever since ;-)

* a decent real ale for those of you who haven't heard of it.

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Google-backed solar electricity facility sets itself on fire

sandman

Correction

"At the time, the plant's owner BrightSource claimed the facility had already hit 180 per cent of capacity".

1
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India roasts as mercury hits 51°C

sandman

Re: Geography check

Well, yes, but when I was there last week the hardy desert dwellers were complaining about the extreme heat. If they found it unusual it probably is.

8
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The Sons of Kahn and the Witch of Wookey

sandman

Made my Friday

Must be a follower of the grey ones - I used to use Sidekick. Another excellent addition to the gospels.

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Airbus to build plane that's even uglier than the A380

sandman

Re: Meanwhile....

Hmmm, I've often sedated myself FOR the flight (particularly when some airlines used to provide free booze non-stop) but would like to be awake to ensure I got to the right destination. It's bad enough when your baggage ends up in Banff...

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5% of drivers want Nigel Farage to be their in-car robo butler

sandman

Soothing

I'd like HAL 9000, so soothing and controlled. ;-) I suppose Farage or Trump would be easier to shout at though, particularly when they insisted that you always turn right.

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This headline will, in part, cost pepper-spraying University of California, Davis $175k

sandman

Re: Just wrong

True - that's the society bit I was thinking about. There doesn't seem any particularly good reason why students should be allowed guns on campus, but then you'd need a police force to disarm them I suppose.... If we'd had guns at university, the student union would have turned into a bloodbath on Saturday nights ;-)

2
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sandman

Just wrong

Surely the question should be "Why in hell's good name does a university need its own police force?" Any society that thinks this even approximates to a good idea needs to take a long hard look at itself.

8
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Google tried to be funny, cocked it up, everyone thought it was a bug

sandman

"At least this foul up didn't introduce any security issues like the "backwards text" one did". That's what they want you to think.... ;-)

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Furious English villagers force council climbdown over Satan's stone booty

sandman

Re: Rock? That's not a rock.

Rename the road "Highway to Hell"? Or "Highway to a small bit of Hell's boss"? Or "Look, we know it's just a rock, but we can all pretend, can't we?"

2
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Woz: World-changers to Apple Watches, why pay for an overpriced band?

sandman

Re: Who actually wears a watch anymore, and why?

When travelling in some of the world's more "interesting" places I find a watch a far better solution. There I use the cheapest waterproof Casio available. Apart from being waterproof, dustproof, more shockproof than me (withstands falling down gorges better, actually, much better) and utterly undesirable to people who'd mug you for a phone or chop your hand off for a Rolex. It's also totally reliable, lasts years, lets you tell the time day or night and doesn't want to connect with anything else. As a final advantage, work can't contact you on it.

11
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Storks bin migration for junk food diet

sandman

Rubbish nests too

I noticed in Marrakech that the Storks use a lot of waste in their nests, fabric, rope, whatever. They were all defending their nests in early February. Guess they have a good junk food diet in Morocco as well.

1
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Easter Islanders didn't commit 'ecocide' after all, says archaeologist

sandman

Books, film promotion equals controversy

Actually it's not an either or situation. The archaeological* evidence strongly indicates both ecological collapse and a population crash. There is also strong evidence for a population recovery until the introduction of disease and slavery by Europeans. Essentially both Diamond and Lipo are correct, but controversy helps sell stuff.

* Disclaimer. Before getting into computery stuff I spent 20+ years being an archaeologist and did read the odd bit or two about Easter Island.

19
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Europe's ExoMars mission enjoys orchestral fanfare

sandman

Epic, man, epic

Pretty good overture, now extend it to cover the time period for the actual trip (note, that's the voyage from a to b, not a recreational pharmaceutical interlude).

2
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The paperless office? Don’t talk sheet

sandman

In an alternative world

I sit in my paperless office administering my fusion powerplant - using the world's dominant desktop OS, Linux, naturally.

14
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When asked 'What's a .CNT file?' there's a polite way to answer

sandman

Everyone's a User

Unless you have a complete understanding of all the software you use and how it interacts with everything else, ditto with all your hardware, and the ability to put right any problem, you too are a "user" to someone else... I've just had to contact support because I've found a bug in our own software and I'm pleased to say they were very good about it ;-) Having done the same job, I'm always very polite to any poor bastard support person - having been on the end of some foaming-mouthed moron's rants once or twice.

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