* Posts by not.known@this.address

276 posts • joined 31 Jul 2009


Home Office jumps the gun on DNA research

not.known@this.address Bronze badge

You think that's dodgy behaviour, what about this?

My brother - six foot two in his socks, skinny as a rake, balding and 20-something at the time - was invited to take part in an identity parade where the suspect was a long-haired, barrel-shaped five foot nothing "gentle"man of over 50 years...

Baby bro' was also asked if he would provide a DNA sample as well - just for the identity parade, honest(!!). Luckily he said "no" as he was just going back to work but I shudder to think what might have happened if he had not had a "valid" reason to be out on the streets during the day...

Microsoft howls as Google turns IE into Chrome

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Pot, kettle...

Not sure which is funnier, MicroSloth accusing other people's browsers of having holes or Google making a plug-in so Users can experience Chrome via IE...

And surely that last is like the ads for super-dooper high-def TVs showing on normal TVs and idiots claiming they can see a difference in the pictures...

Labour to push for broadband tax before election

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Big Brother


Calling the current Government silly names may well be childish, but since practically every other form of protest is either illegal or "merely" suspect behaviour under the new (so-called) "anti-terror" laws, what else can people do to show their displeasure?

Ford says new Taurus 'is fitted with stealth fighter radar'

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"Enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy"(*)

On the road, EVERY other object is a threat - it's just that some have a greater threat value than others.

"Threats" in an Urban travel enviroment would include stupid 13-yr-old mom about to push Baby Chav's stroller into the road, Lycra-clad Cycling Tart trying to hit the speed of sound in the town center, Doddery Old Couple off to collect their pension (oops, not any more! - didn't the UK equivalent of the IRS insist it all go through the banks to prevent 'money laundering'? Or was that just to make it easier for the gubmint to cream more off the top?), iPod-wearing teen crossing the road without thinking about the gasoline-powered death machines hurtling by inches off her shoulder and petrolhead trying to launch his rocket-powered rollerskate off the nearest road hump.

"Threats" in a non-Urban travel environment include Doddery Old Couple in Decrepit Old Volvo doing just over half the speed limit in the middle lane, Company Rep in his German Bulgemobile trying to shout into his phone over the sound of his electric razor while steering with his knees and balancing his Starbucks on top of his satnav, manic trucker short on sleep and close to delivery time, six-legged demi-centaurs in designer jeans, mass-produced 'imitation real fake leather' dude boots and silly hats hiding behind hedges waiting for the only car currently moving in three counties to come along before they start to trot down the middle of the blacktop (despite the nice wide grass strip not 5 foot away), baccy-chewin' Good Ol' Boys who own the road just 'cos they've "been drivin' since before that gol-durned peanut farmer got in the big house (sonny)", and The Man doing 53 on the freeway and watching everyone's front ends dip like crazy as they realise they've got a county mounty on their front porch...

Presumably the Taurus will have some sort of threat assessment routine built in so it can discriminate between some poor sap keeping to his own lane or the occasional pede who remembers that ROADS are for CARS, SIDEWALKS are for PEOPLE, and anything that looks like it might be heading for an attempted co-location in the physical space-time continuum...

I believe Volvo UK are currently running an ad where some great big frack-off 4x4 narrowly misses colliding with a stationary car because some eejit elephant just happens to squirt water all over the windshield as the tank, sorry *car* is approaching a traffic queue at a stop signal, and all due to it's wonderful inbuilt safety features... wonder what that particular safety feature might be... like a short-range RADAR with command authority over the DECU and ABS, perhaps?. (Digital Engine Control Unit, Automatic Braking System). Not sure why they only seem to fit it to the top of the range road-going tank though, surely if they are really *that* concerned about *all* their customers it should be standard fit on all vehicles at no extra cost, nyet?

(*) Learned in Evil Overlord 101.

British troops get nifty techno-gunsights

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Not "made in Britain"?

Didn't Thales buy a few British companies over the years? Wasn't there a building alongside the A3 in Surrey that used to have something like 'Racal' or 'Racal-Decca' on it that now says Thales? And was there not a story on El Reg a few days ago that mentioned a Thales factory in deepest Wales?

Much of the kit gets designed over here, then some Johnny Foreigner shows up and the Management decide to make a quick buck flogging their shares (and, coincidentally, the IP rights) and the once-proud English manufacturing industry ends up a shell of what it once was...

Other names to conjure with include Hawker Aircraft, sold to Bombardier by BAe as being a "non-core business unit" since they only made executive jets (even though they kept their Property Management company, and Rover who made *cars*), Westland sold to Agusta (who have since sold the results of the British Experimental Rotor Program to practically everyone else!) and numerous electronics companies that *used to be* profitable and responsive until they were sold off to foreign "investors"...

Custard Creams can kill: Official

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Best breaktime 'treat' I know of...

Sucking (hot) tea through a Peng^H^H^H certain choc-covered biscuit snack - heaven! (courtesy of my youngest sister-in-law)

South Africa official calls for 'outright ban' on pornography

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All this has happened before. All this will happen again.

Quotes concerning idiots, history and endlessly repeating mistakes spring to mind. Also, slegehammers and nuts as well.

Mechwarrior maker claims Microsoft 'destroyed' studio's culture

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A New Hope..?

There *is* a new MechWarrior game under development that has not got Micro$oft's sticky fingers all over it. There's an "in-game video" of a Warhammer slugging it out with an Atlas - and this time, they've even got the PPC's barrels glowing from the heat!

Here's the URL for the article over at the IGN website:


Fujitsu cuts 1,200 UK jobs after revenue mauling

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I'm grown up, and here's a question I would like you to answer after thinking carefully; if a (global or not) company wishes to sell products or services to people in the UK - and makes a profit out of doing so - why should all that profit then go overseas? If the workers are all based in, for example, India then all the workers spend their money in India, all the taxes go to the Indian governement and the British economy ends up losing the whole value of the goods or services provided.

Sure, a single PC or printer doesn't cost very much by itself, but if every PC, every printer, all the consumables and any upgrades or replacements are added together, you soon end up with a hell of a lot of money going overseas, and none of it coming back any time soon.

As for insufficient business for the number of staff, how come one of the first things a company does after taking over another is shed staff? Unless both companies were overstaffed to begin with, you now have two companies' workloads and fewer staff to do it. And isn't it strange how Management types always seem to be able to find a new niche in the restructuring but the 'customer-facing' workers - the ones who keep customers "happy" and the business in, well, business, are the first to get the chop?

Part of the reason Woolies "failed" is that they had to pay people like EMI and Sony for the DVDs and CDs bought by their Entertainment UK (EUK) business, but the companies they supplied (like Zavvi) were late paying EUK, so Woolies had to fund EUK and went under - paying for someone else's non-payment. If you had watched the news or actually gone into your nearest branches of Woolies, you would have seen that the bricks-and-mortar stores were doing quite good business - remarkably good in fact, considering the general state of the UK economy.

It's amazing that the Labour government can "find" billions of £'s of taxpayers money to bail out the greedy bastards who caused most of this mess, but couldn't help a major GB employer.

Oh, and one more thing - those banks that "we" so willingly helped? Shedding more UK staff and "offshoring" jobs again. Wanna guess where those jobs will end up? Hwere's a clue - it won't be the UK...

Microsoft's Word patent case to hit appeal court next month

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(an)i4 (an)i?

Will Microsoft be fighting this tooth and nail? Or will they turn the other cheek?

What next, i4i suing anybody else who dares infringe their loosely-worded "patent"? Guess that'll be bye-bye Apple, Linux and anything else that allows data to be used in multiple applications...

I don't normally support Micro$haft in legal matters, but I actually hope they win this one...

Hedgehog quip secures Fringe's top gag crown

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Why did Michael Jackson call his song "Bad"?

Cos the RIAA wouldn't let him call it "Complete Bollocks" and he couldn't spell "Atrocious", both of which would have been far more accurate.

Baby-roasting BBQ pulled from Sears site

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@Andus McCoatover

Hold on, that chihuahua has a fork in its /head/ - I thought someone had speared the end of the ugly little munter's tail when I saw the link's title!

X-Men helmsman to fly Battlestar Galactica

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All this has happened before... oh wait a second...

Since most people seem to be unaware, there were TWO groups trying to 'redo' BSG - the team that did *not* have Richard Hatch ( the original Apollo, fact fans) on 'their side' eventually got funded first and made their "re-imagined" tv series. The 'Richard Hatch' group wanted to (re)do a BSG movie... and it looks like they might now get to do so.

So before y'all get your panties in a bunch over this, calm down - there were two groups years ago, and now we might get to see what the "loser" wanted to do in the first place.

Personally, I'm in favor of it all...

Twitter is mainly pointless babble and other rubbish

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@MadonnaC's 2nd Observation

I just asked one of my Infinite Monkeys to have a quick play on my keyboard (Slightly better control than the cat) and I think I see your point....



Ah, but when shall we three meet again? ;lkgjh os ao pfkh] lkj 'poi7ratr 'p/# osho lsq]8- a

To sleep, perchance to dream, ldgh kjdh otuh s/,jBJY snmgf up;o

'Tis done, what is done. laijh o;qh jh;'oij #6u ;'[o[';,/m qpopim

Microsoft at a loss in Word patent case?

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(an) EYE FOUR (an) EYE?

Are they serious? And they are trying to own something that goes right to the heart of the way every computer in existence stores and processes data with a vaguely-worded "patent" that is little more than a rather obvious attempt to cash in on someone (anyone) else's hard work thus allowing the "patent-holder" to get loads of money for doing fsck-all themselves...

And to all those FOSS supporters rubbing their hands in glee at the prospect of Microsoft getting some of their own back, I say this; once MS crash and burn in the courts and have to pay these bottom-feeders off, who will actually pay the money when i4i point out that they've won against Microsoft so have legal precedent for claiming from *anyone* who infringes their patent...

Crystal ball torches woman's flat

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@Mark Macnair

That has *got* to be one of the best laughs I have had this year (excpet for BOFH, natch). Now if you will excuse me, I have to go speak to a manky old white dragon about copyright on a song I heard recently...

[Exit stage left, humming "Doom, doom doom. Doom, doom, doom"...]

MoD website outflanked by XSS flaws

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101 things to do as an Evil Overlord

No. 348756839465906: Must remember not to post "Top Secret Plans For World Domination" as a popup...

Brit firm sells hi-tech fabric vehicle armour to DARPA

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I wouldn't have any problem mentioning that. No, this was something that is - quite literally - a lot more down-to-Earth. And decidedly Military in nature.

Sorry, /would have been/ more down-to-earth, but of course it was cancelled..;-)

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Nothing since 1960s?

Actually, a lot of stuff has been invented over here but because it is done *in collaboration with* American companies (we supply the brains, they supply the money) it tends to be the Yanks who get the kudos.

And what they don't get through funding 'our boys' (and gals), they get by buying up the company a short time later... the latest "American" whizzo AFV, the Stryker, is simply an updated version of a Swiss design - the Mowag Pirhana - that was used by other nations (including Australia and Canada) for years before the Americans "invented' them... Mowag is now part of General Dynamics' Land Systems division...

In the early- to mid-90's there was an entire floor of a building at a BAE Systems site that had British designers, American Management and Admin staff and was working on something that started as a Joint Venture for UK/US forcces but ended up as a solely-US 'toy' - not because the UK didn't want/need it, but because it was so much better than anything the purely American projects had come up with and the Americans decided to 'pull out' of, and shut down, the JV - but kept all "their" intellectual property and carried on with "their" project... which just happened to bear an uncanny resemblance to what the BAE bods had come up with, but which BAE were no longer supposed to be playing with (I cannot say more as this much is within the public arena - any more and I run foul of the Official Secrets Act. Unlike certain members of our current Government, I know how to treat stuff labelled "Confidential", "Restricted" and "Secret"...).

Adobe tries to rub out LibDem airbrush claims

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Ban Photoshop - why?

I can see the point behind banning the use of airbrushing in advertising, but since when has Photoshop (or any other digital image manipulation app) been used solely for that?

There are far more important things for the Lib Dems to be worrying about than this - like the state of the Benefits system, the various "charters to snoop", the MPs' expenses claims and the poor state of the armed forces for starters.

What's up, did someone call her fat or something?

Government slashes final Eurofighter order

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Why do you say the Harrier is overrated? It could be better, yes, but as a means to get steel on target in the minimum amount of time, it's quicker than a helicopter and almost as capable. There are plenty of stories coming out of Afghanistan from UK forces and US Marines who would rather get help from the Harriers than the other, conventional, aircraft like the Hornet.

Tornados have only just gone out there (well, the last couple of months) and we don't have enough trained aircrew and "spare" airframes for Typhoon to be deployed there yet - and with the latest cut in the Tranche 3 buy, the war might be over before we do.

Tornado can carry what, twelve or so Brimstone missiles, five LGBs or a mix of these two, but that isn't why Typhoon will need to replace them eventually. Heck, even Harriers can carry half-a-dozen LGBs or a shed-load of Brimstone (plus all the 'dumb' bombs) and put 'em where they need to go - it's only because the MoD (or, more accurately, the politicians holding the purse strings) don't want to pay the money needed to keep the Harriers flying that we haven't still got them out here.

And the figures for hit probability, while impressive, do not tell the whole story. Don't forget that, back in the day, Valiant, Victor and Vulcan crews would regularly achieve the same sort of accuracy *without* the current generation of whizzo toys like laser designators and satellite (GPS) guidance - the Black Buck "fiasco" was caused by a desire to keep the runway so we could use it without too much trouble rather than any lack of ability on behalf of the crews - we proved we could get a bomber to the Falklands and put bombs down, and that was further away than the Argentinian mainland...

I agree with you about the likelihood of (lack of) decent press coverage happen Typhoon does well in Afghanistan - of all the ordinance dropped to date, the only stuff that gets press recognition is that which ends up in the wrong place. Even then, journos have often failed to point out that the bombs hit where intended, but it was due to one local wanting to get rid of a rival, or ground troops hearing gunfire and assuming that the wedding party was the ones aiming at them and told the pilot to drop in the wrong place, or one lot of troops losing track of another lot of troops and not being able to tell the difference between "good guys" and "bad guys" that causes the problem.

Not sure El Reg comes anywhere near as bad as the Torygraph though - even on Mr Page's worst days!

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@Graham Bartlett

It's not just a case of how capable the planes are compared to who *you* think they need to fight, there's things like airframe life, servicability, spares and so on to consider as well. I do not know where you get the idea that our current aircraft are (quote) "still superior to what all potential opponents have"(endquote) - bearing in mind that Russia is showing signs of reasserting herself on the global stage, and some of the satellite Republics (especially, but not limited to, Georgia and the Ukraine) are not happy about it, and that nobody really expected the Argentinians to go for the Falklands in 1981, I'd be thinking long and hard about exactly who has what to throw our way, happen I were you (don't forget that the MoD employs people to come up with "worst-case scenarios", then ignores most of what they say anyway.)

Air power is not, despite your suggestion otherwise, only of use during the initial stages of a conflict. While it will never replace the man (and woman) on the ground, air power can get heavier weapons to bear on the opposition than ground forces. It's all very well giving your PBIs heavy body armour, tons of small-arms ammunition and a happy smile to show the locals but if you need to get at a well-entrenched enemy fighting from ambush then there is no replacement for air power. Don't forget, too, that helicopters are part of the "air power" you seem to think unnecessary - air power is not all fast jets and fighter-vs-fighter combat.

I agree that faster air-to-air fighters are not really needed at the moment, but don't forget that few aircraft are still dedicated to that role only - and when you're neck-deep in incoming fire, you want the Big Guns (or bombs and rockets as the case may be) onsite soon as possible. If you've got a ground patrol ambushed by a well-concealed enemy, you don't really want to send in more ground troops because there could easily be another ambush force waiting somewhere between the inital contact and your base - and then you end up with two lots of ground-pounders in the mire. Also, unless your troops are close to their base, it may be some time before relief can reach them - by which time it may be too late.

While you have a government happy to claim for their everyday food bills from the public and give billions to propping up banks or overseas aid and all the useless programs they have created, you will never get decent pensions for our fightin' men. But to suggest that you can cut one part of the military budget to feed another part is wrong - all our armed forces need more money, not less.

Company wins US patent for podcasting

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"Podcasting" CHANNEL?

So if the 'channel' can be used for anything else, it won't fall under their Patent will it? So anyone downloading from a site that deals with nothing but Podcasts might need to worry, but anyone downloading from, say the BBC's website has no fear because "the channel" is used for so much more than "the distribution of episodic content"...

In fact, wouldn't you need to have dedicated lines solely for Podcasts before this would affect you? After all, if they try to claim that the Internet is what they are after, won't they have a bit of an uphill struggle?

CIOs get £170k but helpdesk staffers settle for £6/hr

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Big Brother

@The Indomitable Gall

If you really wanted people to know what you're talking about, you wouldn't be using stats in the first place.

Villagers cut off as dripping thong sparks brown out

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One consolation

They didn't get their knickers in a twist...ed pair!

Spooks' favourite IT firm tells Reg readers to grow up

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Black Helicopters

Data Protection Act?

How does one go about claiming damages when someone leaves a copy of my data on a train, loses it in the post, misplaces a hard-drive that is supposed to have been destroyed before the old PC was shipped to some third-world Dictatorship (hey - maybe *that's* how I can get a new machine!), or however someone within either Government, BAE Systems or Detica manages to make a mockery of their "security"?

If my wife and I both drive our car, but her insurance is cheaper through Company A and mine cheaper through Company B and the car is involved in an accident, regardless of who is at fault etc, we are supposed to notify the insurance company as they cover the CAR as well as us as individuals, n'est pas? Nice to know that you will still get clobbered if youf ollow THEIR rules, innit?

I'm on a couple of science-fiction forums where we discuss things like space travel, alien life, "creation" of fictional worlds and so on - including things like WEAPONS and COMBAT VEHICLES - and some of us even "practice" what we talk about by attending conventions, or such activities as paintball, laserquest and Airsoft. Other members include medical doctors, serving and retired military personnel, government people within various agencies around the world, and more besides. Once this database trawl gets under way, I expect I will be receiving a visit from the Men In Black since I am obviously involved in subversive activities...

One last thing... Carnivore/Detica/Echelon Bait: Gordon Brown, M16, global thermonuclear war, Whitehall, Guy Fawkes, secret mission, Horonto Gosh, Horonto Gosh, Anaya Tolya, Boom!


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