* Posts by TRT

4753 posts • joined 11 Sep 2009

Researchers take the piss with pee-powered liquid energy project

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How about simply...

"You're in charge"

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Power over IP.

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Commercial harvesting

Domestos etc aren't going to be too chuffed about this drop off in sales of shit you throw down the bog.

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Cheeky IT rival parks 'we're hiring' van outside 'vote Tory' firm Storm Technologies

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Re: @Hollerithevo

Did I get the attribution wrong? I know that there's a wisdom of Solomon tale about the woman with two babies. Maybe he was very, very wise and was brought in to judge many disputes. Just like Anna, the Skyr yoghurt woman.

---EDIT---

I did get the attribution wrong. The story of the thief and the stick was the wisdom of Birbal. I'm sure someone told me it was Solomon. Ah well. The principle is the same.

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Re: How would Storm know?

Ah, the wisdom of Solomon. Two men were accused of theft. Knowing that the punishment would be the cutting off of their hands, both men were terrified. Only one had committed the crime, but it was impossible to say which it was and neither would confess, both proclaimed innocence. Solomon was asked to intercede in the case, and he had his court wizard enchant two sticks of equal length such that they would grow a full inch overnight when in the presence of a thief.

In the morning, the men were fetched from their cells and the sticks were compared. Solomon declared that he had knew who the thief was so the sentence was carried out. Solomon knew the guilty man was the one with a stick an inch SHORTER than the other. Only one person knew who was guilty, the thief themselves, and in fear of the punishment they had seen the stick growing and had broken an inch off to avoid their fate. The honest man knew he had nothing to fear so left the stick alone.

So really Storm does not need to know who voted which way. The voter alone knows which way they voted, and that is enough. The mere threat of losing one's livelihood may be enough to influence a decision, subconsciously or consciously. Rationality doesn't come into it. Sticks do not grow an inch overnight, bosses do not know which way an individual staff member voted - this does not matter.

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Humanity uploaded an AI to Mars and lets it shoot rocks with lasers

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Re: FFS, does no-one remember the future?

Opportunity? Subsequent missions... Harmony, Destiny, Symphony, Rhapsody, Melody.

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The famous Herring Sandwich experiment.

"The easiest way to fool a completely logical robot is to feed it with the same stimulus sequence over and over again so it gets locked in a loop. This was best demonstrated by the famous Herring Sandwich experiments conducted millennia ago at MISPWOSO (the MaxiMegalon Institute of Slowly and Painfully Working Out the Surprisingly Obvious).

A robot was programmed to believe that it liked herring sandwiches. This was actually the most difficult part of the whole experiment. Once the robot had been programmed to believe that it liked herring sandwiches, a herring sandwich was placed in front of it. Where upon the robot thought to itself, Ah! A herring sandwich! I like herring sandwiches."

"It would then bend over and scoop up the herring sandwich in its herring sandwich scoop, and then straighten up again. Unfortunately for the robot, it was fashioned in such a way that the action of straightening up caused the herring sandwich to slip straight back off its herring sandwich scoop and fall on to the floor in front of the robot. Whereupon the robot thought to itself, Ah! A herring sandwich..., etc., and repeated the same action over and over again."

"The scientists at the Institute thus discovered the driving force behind all change, development, and innovation in life, which was this: herring sandwiches. They published a paper to this effect, which was widely criticized as being extremely stupid. They checked their figures and realized that what they had actually discovered was "boredom," or rather, the practical function of boredom. In a fever of excitement they then went on to discover other emotions like "irritability," "depression," "reluctance," "ickiness," and so on. The next big breakthrough came when they stopped using herring sandwiches, whereupon a whole welter of new emotions became suddenly available to them for study, such as "relief," "joy," "friskiness," appetite," "satisfaction," and most important of all, the desire for "happiness.""

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UCL ransomware attack traced to malvertising campaign

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Outlook Obscur-o-matic link checker...

is more of a hinderance than a help. Completely obfuscates the original URL, so any user education about how to spot a dodgy link is lost.

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Oxford profs tell Twitter, Facebook to take action against political bots

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alt.democracy.die.die.die

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Many warnings through the last century...

of the dangers of algocracy.

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Brit uni blabs students' confidential information to 298 undergrads

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Oh Christ on a bike! It's almost as bad as doing everything in Word or Excel, stored on Sharepoint.

I mean, why get people to complete the reams of paperwork required for a project specification as word documents which are then stored in a hierarchical folder based structure that varies around a core design depending on who the Project Administrator is? That administrator then has to copy the information from the word forms into PowerBi, which churns out an incomprehensible set of graphs and a pile of hyperlinks to other word documents. It's bizarre and archaic! But it's the latest thing. Apparently. Working stupid is the latest thing. Amazing.

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Have to agree that many organisations operate a monolithic structure where the ERP systems aren't flexible enough to do the job, but they're so insular and unmodifiable that for a rough and dirty report on, say, pay by gender, or pay by disability or amount of paternal leave taken, or percentage of students requiring special measures for exams, that it's often quicker, easier and within the DIY reach of a member of support staff to take the data through Excel to get the result.

So often I get asked, "How quickly can you get a breakdown of historic research income by quarter separated by the gender ratio within the lab and gender of the lead investigator?" that when I reply "Two days, including testing, once I've finished this epic piece of coding I'll get straight onto it for you." I get "I could do that in Excel in, like, an hour".

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You have no idea (or maybe you do) how mind rippingly annoying it is to carefully craft a web-app front end to an encrypted database designed to keep all this kind of information safe only to be asked (1) to code an excel download option and (2) see those data appearing unencrypted in spreadsheets on the shared folders.

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Re: Another reason to ban Outlook.

Outlook must be the only email system I've seen with a recall option. I obviously am wrong on this, but that's down to the fact that I've not seen every email system under the sun, only a few well used and popular ones.

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'OK, everyone. Stop typing, this software is DONE,' said no one ever

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Re: Hammers

"Warning. Notification of license expiry. Your Hammer Time has now finished."

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Or complaining that the 17th ed regs mean that documenting the installation is now compulsory and it's easier to get the paperwork right by reinstalling the whole shebang from scratch than trying to reverse engineer it to prove the earth bonding is to spec.

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If you're into tool porn...

like me, a quick browse through the Screwfix catalogue will reveal that the hammer isn't quite done yet. All manner of materials creep into the design, all manner of refinements and enhancements... precision shot weighted dampening, hickory tang inserts, 3D printed head rivet pins, magnetic holders, precision ground anti-slip striking faces, anti-sweat bio-active grip windings...

Of course taking a shoe off and whacking in a pin to hold up that new print from the little corner shop that sells dust collecting motivational framed pictures is mostly good enough for some people.

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Elon Musk reveals Mars colony rocket capable of bringing pizza joints to the red planet

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Re: Hmmmn.. pizza!

When the moon hits your eye, like a big pizza pie, that's a gravitational perturbance of catastrophic proportion, possibly caused by the explosion of a nuclear waste facility constructed just over the furthest terminator on the dark side of the moon

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Re: What about Oxygen?

I prefer Mars on ice-cream. Ah... the return of the Ice-cream Warriors.

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That diagram reminds me...

of a Dalek cutaway diagram for some reason.

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Report estimates cost of disruption to GPS in UK would be £1bn per day

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Re: Alternatively...

Weston-Super-Mare is even worse. It's like some sort of quantum singularity at the centre of it. You cannot escape. And apparently if you do manage to escape, you go insane. I know, I was there once. For FOUR HOURS. I went under the same narrow railway bridge eight times.

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Re: Alternatively...

My God! Why do you think the satellite industry is so heavily dominated by males? They'd rather design a space satellite navigation system engineered around near-quantum effects, precision components built to a tolerance unheard of and ruggedised to withstand the harsh radiation environment of space and launched atop multimillion pound rocket delivery systems, than actually have to ASK for directions.

The whole concept of GNSS came about when a rocket engineer's wife was nagging him to stop the car and ask the postman which was the right road for Weymouth town centre.

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Re: Back-up must not be satellite

Did you watch that crap solar attack film on SciFi this weekend too? The dinosaur one was better (as in worse) but at least it had Dick Jones (Robocop) getting ripped to pieces by a dinosaur.

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Re: Alternatively...

Heck squeeze me? Check out the junk. I'm male. We just don't DO that kind of thing.

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Alternatively...

we could keep going for a bit with reduced accuracy using that handy crowd-sourced WiFi / cell tower to GPS / positional mapping data that the big companies like Apple and Google have been slurping for the last 10 years. My old iPod did a fair job of location finding, and that's not got any sort of a GNSS chip in it.

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Software dev bombshell: Programmers who use spaces earn MORE than those who use tabs

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Re: Left handed touch-typist

Diet tab. Unless you need the sugar rush.

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Re: Tabs are inconsistent...

I always used a fixed width font for code. It helps lining up similar blocks of code and makes it easier to spot rogue characters. Keeping variable names a consistent length helps as well - it's also fun trying to think up alternative words for describing a variable's use that has the same number of characters.

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Don't touch that mail! London uni fears '0-day' used to cram network with ransomware

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Re: "no reports of the malware impacting Mac or Linux machines"

Excepting where research groups used shared folders and one group member had a Windows machine.

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Ah.

Well it can happen all so easily. The servers should have anti-encryption defences... Test files in every folder that are monitored etc etc.

I worked there for many years, and I know university research systems well at many places. They have no defences at all once something is in.

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Labour says it will vote against DUP's proposed TV Licence reforms

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That's a LOT of comments...

Wow. Hot topic

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It's 2017 and Microsoft is still patching Windows XP+ – to plug holes exploited by trio of leaked NSA weapons

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Re: MS still cleaning up after Windows XP

It's the last puppy you'll ever need.

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I still haven't found what I'm malloc()ing for: U2 tops poll of music today's devs code to

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Thanks for the tip on the Bose QC. I might invest. Someone thought it was a good idea to put the air-conditioning only in the Outer Office, but they also put the training/analysis PCs for the 'scope in there. Queue lots of chatter about two feet away round the corner. >>>SCREAM<<<

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Taylor Swift???

Explains many things.

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I prefer a little ambient... like

Brian Eno.

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The secretary was never at the desk because... advance warning!

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Damian Green now heads up UK Cabinet Office

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Re: Should get married to Amber Rudd.

She could always go to work in a men's suit, so that when she comes to put a bolo on, they can refer to it as the Amber Necktie.

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Should get married to Amber Rudd.

Then she could change her name so people would stop making stupid traffic light jokes about her.

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Swedish school pumps up volume to ease toilet trauma

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I suppose...

any sort of plop music would do.

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Re: Are You Embarrassed Easily?

The course has been designed by Dr. Carl Gruber of the 'Institute of Going a Bit Red' in Helsinki. Here he himself introduces the course.

Hello my name is Carl Gruber. Thank you for inviting me into your home. My method is the result of six years work here at the institute in which subjects were exposed to simulated embarrassment predicaments over a prolonged fart, period, time (sound of farting). Sorry.

Lesson two, noises. Noises are a major embarrassment source. Even words like tits, winkle and vibraphone, cannot rival the embarrassment potential of sounds. Listen to this if you can. (slurping squishy noise). How do you rate your embarrassment response? A) High, B) Hello, C) Good evening. If C, you are loosening up and will soon be ready for this. (plopping, popping noise) Well, how did you rate? A) Embarrassed, B) Hello, C) Good evening.

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Capita call centre chap wins landmark sex discrimination lawsuit

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Re: Management speak ...

"...takes equal opportunities very seriously, we are disappointed with the outcome in this case on that part of the claim where we were unsuccessful".

Double talk of the highest magnitude.

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We're not saying we're living in a simulation but someone's simulated the universe in a computer

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Re:In the beginning...

The Book of Gensys?

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Re: DNA

Talk a lot, don't you?

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Re: @Demos Are we a simulation?

Pick a number. Any number. At random. Say it out loud together, OK? One, two, three...

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Re: That is not science..just a waste of time and resources!

PATA HDD? No... old hat. I've heard that it will be migrated to SSD. Flash... Saviour of the universe.

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HPE ignored SAN failure warnings at Australian Taxation Office, had no recovery plan

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imopssible

Yes, those pesky ops.

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Ex-MI5 boss: People ask, why didn't you follow all these people ... on your radar?

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Re: IRA

Drawing parallels seems artificial? Well, it rather depends on how short your memory is.

The names behind it, the reasons behind it, might have changed, but if you are on the receiving end of half-a-pound of nails delivered courtesy of a lump of Semtex, you're not going to be going to pieces over how clearly defined the motivations behind your imminent death are.

I think the IRA are far from finished, however. I still pick up news of killings perpetrated in the cause of Irish nationalism. That moment where Sarah Connor is sitting at the gas station watching the boys fight... that.

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Re: Says it all

'What are we going to do to ensure we still are needed and stop all our resources being taken away?'."

Swordfish.

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Apple gives world ... umm ... not much new actually

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Re: Sign of a mature market?

I miss the old x-serve. A proper powerful 1U solution, with dual-PSUs and very easy servicing. :(

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Re: Things fade

Well there's always the contraband market segment... for example smuggling phones into prisons. That would be the mobile-falling-out-of-the-bottom market.

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