* Posts by TRT

6731 posts • joined 11 Sep 2009

Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park

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Re: IBM 4019

The only time I've seen a printer on fire was when someone tried to stick a sheet of nitrocellulose transparency through it. Thought they'd helpfully use up the old stock of transparencies they found in a cupboard, not knowing that it was stuff we stocked for use every now and again for certain Western blots.

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Re: Had the fire brigade called to a five star hotel, in Malta....

Ah the humble toaster. Source of so many burny evacuations. What it needs is some sort of AI added that will determine drunkeness, oversized bread objects caught in the mechanism, etc etc.And people respond better to spoken warnings than a series of meaningless beeps and whistles. So it needs a voice. It could be hooked into the alarm clock, so it can prepare hot bread comestibles just in time for the morning repast.

It could even ask you bread related philosophical questions in order to stimulate the individual over breakfast. It's a great idea. I'll make a fortune. All I need now is a name for it...

Hacking train Wi-Fi may expose passenger data and control systems

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Re: Security researcher clickbait

What we really need to know, though, is how much is the house he lives in worth.

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The brakes on my train are controlled by either the driver or, for emergency application only, by a radio signal at 64.25 kHz followed by another a few seconds later at 65.25 kHz or at 66.25 kHz and 65.25 kHz together. I wonder if there was confusion between AWS and AWS? One's cloud, the other's loud.

Artificial intelligence is good for at least one thing – making hardware important again

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Re: "A tool. Not a team member."

Well, it depends what team you're on. There's a lot of members of my team that are tools.

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I suppose everything has its place...

VMs are not the solution to every single compute requirement.

Australian foreplay: Bum-biting in an underground hole

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Hence the term...

Rumpy-pumpy.

Waymo van prang, self-driving cars still suck, AI research jobs, and more

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Re: Dumb drivers

"I am referring to filling out the form."

Well make sure you fill it out correctly then. Don't want to jeopardise that gold plated job over a silly little mistake.

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Re: Dumb drivers

"I'm sure at least I would spell the form correctly which probably beats most of the incumbents."

I don't think they need to you write the form for them. I'm pretty sure they have one all ready-prepared for candidates to fill out.

As for the union arrangement, well there is an agreement that driver vacancies are offered internally first, yes. There are basically three manual labour "camps" on the Tube; stations, trains and depots. Most stations are RMT, most drivers are ASLEF and depots are a mix of RMT, Unison etc. So there's no one union that is set to gain by internal transfer priority arrangements, is there?!

So why would unions and TfL agree to recruit drivers internally first? Well, firstly stations and depots are all certified with the basic competencies mandated by law for working on the railway - track walking, evacuation, platform operations etc. That's 12 weeks worth of training and testing required there already. The re-evaluation process is much quicker than the full training, so basically it shortens the time you are paying a driver not train instead of drive. Secondly, this training process is quite arduous and the drop out rate is quite high, even higher amongst non-railway-exposed trainees. Dropouts waste money.

Secondly, it allows a staged recruitment into driving. Want to be a driver? Best bet is to get into stations or depots first. Get to know people, find out what the job is really about. It's not a bar on the general public - apply for a CS role first. 6 months in, apply to train operations.

Honestly, there's no telling some people, is there?

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Re: Dumb drivers

"Pushing a button to drive a train really isn't any more complex than that. "

Then I suggest you sign up. They are recruiting at the moment. I hope you make it through the pre-interview questionnaire at the very least.

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Re: Dumb drivers

Lille Metro 1 was built from scratch in 1983 and is a rubber tyred metro system, not a rail system. It's a great achievement for sure, but the de novo approach means that you can walk alongside one of the trains down the tunnel on a lit, segregated path in the event of an evacuation, something that you cannot do in the 12 foot diameter metal pipes of the London Tube.

The fact that LM1 has manual driving provision indicates that drivers are still required. They still have to be trained, paid, they still have to practice the various techniques required. The trains still need maintenance, they still need cleaning. The tunnels and guideways still need inspecting. It's still a controlled environment. There's no getting away from workers withdrawing their labour and causing disruption - the DLR was shutdown by strike action recently after decades of good management/worker relations. It was down to changes made by a new management company taking over. Good relations is what makes a service strike free, not threatening to sack everyone and replace them with robots.

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Re: Dumb drivers

I wouldn't expect a train driver to understand the complexities and reach of the jobs of programmers or computer specialists or financiers etc etc etc.

It's clear that there are a vast number of people who don't drive trains that are very happy to relate their expertise on the job they don't do, loudly and forcefully. And if anyone tries to tell them different, or even point out that there may be room for ignorance in their view of it all, they'll get really defensive and irate about it.

If you refuse to listen when someone says "actually it's more complex than that..." then I really don't want that kind of know-it-all building the transport systems which will be taking myself and millions of others around the capital. Thanks, but no thanks.

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Re: Baby's first words are surely...

print("Hello World!")

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Re: Dumb drivers

""Tell that to a Central Line driver on a rainy day."

We need to replace those overpaid button pushers with automation ASAP."

The Central Line very often has to be driven in coded manual or even restricted manual because the automation (full ATO) cannot cope with wet rails and signal loss due to heavy rain or storm conditions.

https://www.davros.org/rail/signalling/articles/central.html

Now, take your copy of the Daily Heil and go and shove it down a dark hole somewhere... a tube station, perhaps. Honestly... IT engineers, managers, programmers, eh? We need, ASAP, to replace those overpaid pencil and button pushers with... well... anything would be better really, wouldn't it? Surely we could build computerised systems which are 100% reliable and can cope with every circumstance, and be flexible enough to keep their services running in almost every routine eventuality... then we wouldn't need these people keep holding us all to ransom all the time with their £200 keyboard replacements and £79 battery replacements and ongoing software licensing fees. Oh, they can JUSTIFY that can they? Changing security threat profiles require a rapid response do they? Pull the other one, it's got "communication cord" on it. And just look at the TSB fiasco... it's a public service for goodness sake... people rely on being able to pay their bills you know...

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Re: The Victoria Line

Supervised autonomy, of course. It only covers motoring and braking, none of the other operations such as PA, doors, CCTV, heating and lighting etc. The various modes such as full ATO, protected or coded manual, slow manual etc describe how either the driver watches the robot, or the robot watches the driver.

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Re: Autonomous trains are quite successful...

Tell that to a Central Line driver on a rainy day.

Every major OS maker misread Intel's docs. Now their kernels can be hijacked or crashed

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Re: My arms used to be stronger,

Hence the term "manual labour".

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Re: the easier it is to get it (horribly) wrong.

No exceptions?

Commodore 64 owners rejoice: The 1541 is BACK

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Re: Reliability

I never had any acoustic couplers. but all the rest of the kit was the same. I jumped from C64 to A500, though. Used to love making up kits from Maplin, then modifying them. Midi controllers, speech synthesisers, expansion port expanders etc.

I did network the 20 to the 64, using RS-432!

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Perfect!

I've been waiting for one of these to connect to my C64 Pi based emulator. Now, how long will it be before there's a 4 pen plotter? Used to love messing with that.

Australian prisoner-tracking system brought down by 3PAR defects

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Re: 3PAR losing data

As I understand it, he KCL incident was apparently caused when one of the 4 controller modules was hot swapped by a HP engineer for a replacement module that was flashed with a different version of the firmware. The consequences of running the system with conflicting versions of controller firmware was known before the engineer acted, so who's fault was that one, eh? The incident was compounded by a lack of DR testing by KCL staff, and a panicked decision to erase the array and restore but the initial outage was pure HPe.

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Re: System outages and faults are infrequent

Ah, but does HP support still cover a system if it's been jail broken?

New Monty Python movie to turn old jokes into new royalties

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Re: Short of cash?

Yes it is.

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Re: Short of cash?

No. He didn't.

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Ex-wives? As in wives that have ceased to be? That have shuffled off this marital coil and gone to join the choir invisible?

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Re: Short of cash?

Look, he didn't come here for an argument.

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Shovelling shedloads of sheet glass in the shithouse?

That's hard to swallow.

LESTER looks up, spins its wheels: The Register’s beer-butler can see ...

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You've heard of blue-sky thinking? This is whi-sky thinking.

Hacking charge dropped against Nova Scotia teen who slurped public records from the web

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Trying to get FOI data from somewhere?

MacBook Pro petition begs Apple for total recall of krap keyboards

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Re: Visual elegance

Behold the OOBE!

Still get that waft when you open the nearly airtight box...

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Re: Sink o'the Mayo?

What? Is that like an Irish thing? Or when you empty all the old Hellman's jars down the drain because you find it's all out of date when you get it out to go with the salad accompanying the first BBQ of the season?

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Re: I'm disappointed.....

Not all of the commentards are missing out on lazy weekend trolling, obviously...

IT systems still in limbo as UK.gov departments await Brexit policy – MPs

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Of course we can reproduce all the EU's IT systems in a millisecond, if we pull together ask the Russians.

TFTFY

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Re: the Brexit gps system... Galileo version for EU citizens heading to the UK.

At the next available opportunity... turn back.

***ATTENTION***

***Geofence triggered***

***System updating***

***Loading new local data file***

Go straight ahead towards Local.

This is a local area for local people.

There's nothing for you here.

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Re: The Agri & Horticultural Development Board impact study reckons most british farmers..

On the other hand, the UK might be able to capitalise on its headless chicken mountain.

Nvidia quickly kills its AMD-screwing GeForce 'partner program' amid monopoly probe threat

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GPP?

Sounds ghastly.

It is. It all is. Absolutely ghastly. Just don't even talk about it.

BOFH: But I did log in to the portal, Dave

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Knowing intimately how it works can sometimes increase the amount of... erm... respect that is given to a particular process.

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Re: Wheres my carpet roll

When my colleague says they are popping out for a roll up... I should start checking the papers for unsolved disappearances, no?

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Did you register to use SmartLime(tm)?

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Re: I've been there

Apparently Amazon reckon that if their pages have a 100ms extra lag time, then they lose 1% of global sales... So Dell and HP and countless others presumably must be saving 100% of global support costs with their 10s + load times.

NASA dusts off FORTRAN manual, revives 20-year-old data on Ganymede

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Re: Paper tape anyone?

The Northleach mechanical musical instrument museum, sadly a bit dodgy due to Keith Harding, IIRC, being found out for historical kiddy-fiddling, has a wonderful piano which could play and record using inks onto a roll and mercury baths and moving copper contacts etc. The rendition of Rhapsody in Blue recorded by Gershwin himself on that very piano is utterly transporting.

Bill Gates declined offer to serve as Donald Trump's science advisor

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Well...

It wouldn't be the first time Gates has taken on a trump challenge.

I know, I know. Cheap joke based on someone's name. But someone's got to do it.

Brit healthcare system inks Windows 10 install pact with Microsoft

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Re: How Long?

Indeed, I think the NHS has a number of epidemiologists who would be well placed to advise on spread of infection.

Javid's in, Rudd's out: UK Home Sec quits over immigration targets scandal

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Re: all us Ow'demers jobs....

Didn't know you had any! ;-)

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Re: What's the IT Angle?

With a broken internal model of what security should look like...

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Re: A dead hamster would be better than Rudd.

Wrapped it sellotape, it would be infinitely more effable.

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Re: Fuckety bye...

I understand Rudd was something to do with Four Weddings... script editor for Hugh Grant, perhaps?

Windrush immigration papers scandal: What it didn't teach UK.gov about data compliance

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Re: And as for how long...

If one were to do a comparative study in the department of geriatric studies - perform some sort of analysis on a population that had to be comparable with data from a population last seen by a doctor 60 years ago, perhaps... well, one might be cursing the foresight of a bean counter who decided that the statute of limitations was 6 years, so that's as long as the records needed keeping for.

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Re: And as for how long...

Quite so. Which begs the question, if there are rules and policies in place regarding the release or publication of records, then just why is one concerned about how long one retains them for? Why destroy the records under DPA? If DPA is one's only concern, then keeping them for longer than the lifespan of the individual doesn't become a problem. As time goes on the "imperative" to destroy the records is removed.

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Re: And as for how long...

Totally missing the point which was to do with retention of records, rather than confidentiality and public access, but carry on...

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