* Posts by VinceH

2983 posts • joined 26 Nov 2009

Stop all news – it's time for us plebs to be told about BBC paycheques!

VinceH
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Facepalm

Re: To howl or not to howl, that is the question

"The BoE tool is only as accurate as the inflation measure it uses - so not very."

The accuracy of the BoE tool isn't the issue, though - it's the accuracy of subtracting 20 from 2017, and coming up with 1986, which is 31 years ago.

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VinceH
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To howl or not to howl, that is the question

"Take this howler, for example:

Here's something we may actually be biased about - we reckon this is a pretty good deal. #BBC pic.twitter.com/kKsc8eiaBr

— BBC Press Office (@bbcpress) July 19, 2017

Did you see what they did there? That’s right – they’ve applied some kind of correction for inflation (which, incidentally, doesn't match what happens if you look up the same values using the Bank of England's inflation calculator) to “prove” that the Telly Tax is somehow cheaper now than it was 31 years ago. In 1986 a colour TV licence cost £58, if figures on Wikipedia are to be believed."

The tweet appears to compare today's licence fee with that for 1997 adjusted for inflation, not 1986 - and using the 1997 figure of £91.50 (and the correct year) the Bank of England tool gives 152.82, as per the image in the tweet.

Edit: Throwing £58 and 1986 at the Bank of England tool gives a figure of £155.96 - so that would have arguably been a better comparison anyway, had they done that.

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Moneysupermarket fined £80,000 for spamming seven million customers

VinceH
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Re: Personally speaking,

"It's more common than you think"

And Moneysupermarket aren't the only big name to be guilty of disregarding customer choices, as shown by this example from Barclaycard from a couple of weeks ago.

Note that the email (on the right) is clearly a marketing missive, while my account (bottom left) shows I've opted out of receiving such things. Just for added shits and giggles, top left is their page warning about email scams warning against emails asking for log-in details. A 'log-in' link in an email must obviously be perfectly safe, because no fraudster could conceivably do that with the link taking the victim to a fake version of the real site, could they?

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Three Microsoft Outlook patches unpatched, users left to DIY

VinceH
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Re: "any automatic technique for removing the patches"

"you'll need to get back to Windows 101"

Wait, what?

When was that version released?

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What can you do with adult VR, some bronze gears and a robotic thumb? On a Friday?

VinceH
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The Antikythera Mechanism...

"even came with instructions embossed onto a plaque mounted inside the wooden lid."

But they never did find the EULA.

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An AI can replace what a world leader said in his video-taped speech. This will end well. Not

VinceH
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Ditto. In some places, I felt that if I was watching a movie, I might be wondering if the original audio had been dubbed with something similar, but not quite the same.

Also, look again at 1:23 in the video, when the person Obama is talking to says "Okay" - the Fauxbama attempts to mouth the word.

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OMG, dad, you're so embarrassing! Are you P2P file sharing again?

VinceH
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"Might be an uncommon opinion, but I actually pay for the good/services I use...I dunno call me old-fashioned I guess."

You're old fashioned.

And so am I. :)

Only yesterday, someone mentioned a band in an email, with a link to one of their numbers on YouTube1. I gave it a watch/listen, then moved on to a couple more of their YouTube videos. I decided I liked them a lot, so I immediately purchased their album.

1. In the interests of completeness: Cardboard Love, by The Hallows

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Biometric data stolen from corporate lunch rooms system

VinceH
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Re: "Biometrics." It's a security "feature"

"Rule 1 is to NEVER, EVER even transport the raw data - you pre-process at the point of collection."

If I've read the article and breach notice correctly, the malware was on the kiosks - and was therefore operating at the point of collection.

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Male escort says he gave up IT to do something more meaningful

VinceH
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It's Microsoft that is fucking people, though.

What every one else is trying to do is administer morning after pills. Lots of them.

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Facebook hit two billion users today and SugarCRM reminded us you are Zuck's product

VinceH
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Unhappy

Re: CaaS

I was going to suggest a correction to "CaaUS" for "Creepware as an Unwanted Service" - then I realised how many people lap up this sort of shit and think it's wonderful.

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Humanity is doomed: We watch 45 BILLION hours of YouTube a month

VinceH
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Joke

"Now all we need is the daily mail and redtube to release their numbers."

I understand one of those two peddles porn - but what does Redtube do?

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UK and Ecuador working on Assange escape mechanism

VinceH
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Re: Diplomatic pouch?

"A box without airholes is better known as a casket."

Handy. No need to move him from one box to another for his burial.

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PLATO mission to find alien life is given the thumbs up

VinceH
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Re: Go PLATO

"It still astonishes me that for a large part of my life nobody knew if there was a single planet outside the solar system with little short-term prospect of resolving that and now we know of 4000+ planets."

^ This, totally.

And I hope this comes to pass before I pop my clogs:

"and could eventually lead to the detection of extra-terrestrial life.”

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OnePlus accused of installing cheat codes for benchmarks with new handset

VinceH
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"Oneplus 3 here (original version, not the updated one), and I get OTA updates every few weeks.

Current Android version is at 7.1.1, at a security patch level May 2017. It's rarely more than a month behind Google themselves."

WileyFox Storm. Version 7.1.1 and 1st June 2017.

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F-Secure's Mikko Hypponen on IoT: If it uses electricity, it will go online

VinceH
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"We can't avoid the IoT revolution by refusing to play part."

At the moment, we can - and I fully intend to continue doing so for as long as that remains possible.

(And even if there is to come a point when all new gear has this data slurping built in by default, there's always second hand gear - and in some cases alternative methods of doing whatever the internet of shit devices do. These points alone should push back the point of no return quite some way.)

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

VinceH
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See also

Windows 7 / 8 -> 10.

The difference between 7 and 8 is bad, but I've grouped it that way because there wasn't a 'free'1 upgrade from 7 to 8.

1. And by 'free' I obviously mean 'forced' or 'duped into' for those people less able to prevent or avoid it.

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

VinceH
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Re: Venus is too nasty, Mercury too hot and the moons of Jupiter or Saturn too distant.

"How about Trump, May and Rudd? There's your 3 boobs, and at least one of them is reputedly a lady."

Good grief! You learn something even more bizarre about Trump every day!

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Google coughs up $5.5m to make recruiters 'screwed out of overtime pay' go away

VinceH
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Re: Uber-esque?

"Remember "Do no evil"? I think that Google need to seriously think carefully about their entire business strategy."

I think they did that some years ago - and concluded the best solution was to drop the "Do no Evil" slogan.

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ICO fines Morrisons for emailing customers who didn't want to be emailed

VinceH
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Good - except the fine isn't high enough.

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Months late, unaudited: ZX Spectrum reboot firm files accounts

VinceH
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Re: Accounts?

That's also a valid point. The £366,500 raised on Indiegogo could very easily be included in that current assets figure of £417,888. However, if that was so you'd expect the liabilities to reflect it as well (because these are unfulfilled sales), so that figure would have to be at least £366,500 - but it's slightly lower. I therefore suspect that isn't the case.

However, this is all just speculation, so *shrugs*

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VinceH
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FAIL

Re: Accounts?

"And for the benefit of The Reg, they’ll not be audited because they’re under the threshold where auditing is required"

^This.

Also: The El Reg article dated 29th March 2016, "Monster crowdfunding total raised for Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega+" - which is the nearest article on this to the year end date those accounts relate to, states that at that point £366,665 was raised. Unless the other £150,000ish was raised in the space of the remaining day of the accounting period1, then you wouldn't expect to see the whole £513,000 raised reflected in them.

The company has clearly wronged the people that have stumped up cash, but a little accuracy goes a long way - questioning why the £513,000 is missing from the accounts when a huge chunk of that was almost certainly raised after the accounting date and therefore can't possibly be reflected in them is massively unhelpful.

Also, part 2. I'm not sure what to make of this comment in the article:

"Both the "net assets" and "capital" entries in the accounts contain the same figure of £54,882"

It's a balance sheet - they're supposed to be the same.

What that balance sheet tells us is that figure increased by £64,628 from the previous year. That could be the net profit they declared for not-quite-a-year ending 30/3/2016 - but there could be other changes in there as well. (Other figures reflected in the 'capital' section would be the share capital, for example).

1. If you're going to look into a company's filing to ponder any oddities, this is something that you should have picked up on and questioned, for a start. In December 2016, they filed form AA01 to change the accounting period from 31st March to 30th March. Why?

My (possibly wild) speculation: IIRC, Indiegogo collects from 'backers' at the end of the funding period - which in this case was apparently 27th March, 2016. Given that this will be by credit and debit card payments, processing may take a few days - and I can't see them paying the people who ran the campaign until that has complete. I wonder, therefore, if the date the money was paid to Retro Computing Ltd was - tada! - 31st March?

If so, precisely none of the money would be reflected in these accounts.

However, as I said, that may be wild speculation.

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Fighter pilot shot down laptops with a flick of his copper-plated wrist

VinceH
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Mushroom

"Terminator was wrong. Skynet wasn't a defence computer. It was a network of printers. And now we've given our printers WiFi! The end will be soon!"

And here we see the true definition of a botnet.

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Banking websites are 'littered with trackers' ogling your credit risk

VinceH
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Optional

Thinking back to an issue I had with HSBC last year. If memory serves, this was problem occurred when they updated their online banking site (personal) to the current version (which, it has to be said, is rubbish - but that's another matter)

I had trouble logging in - it would get so far, and then show me a message saying something like "Loading data" with the spinner that never seemed to stop spinning; the data would never load. I tried it more than one combination of browser and platform.

They initially replied saying that Palemoon isn't supported, until I pointed out it's a Firefox offshoot. A little later, they suggested the issue is either caused by private browsing mode, or the use of Ghostery.

After they said that, I worked out what Ghostery needed to allow in order for the site to work - cookies from Webtrends. Their bollocks excuse was "There are elements that we track to help us protect your account online."

Solution: Whitelist WebTrends for HSBC - but they track sod all because all cookies are wiped at the end of a browsing session anyway.

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Voyager 1 passes another milestone: It's now 138AU from home

VinceH
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Re: Middle Age

f) Managed to avoid the Windows 10 update.

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DUP site crashes after UK general election

VinceH
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Re: But seriously...

I'm just going to leave this here.

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UK PM May's response to London terror attack: Time to 'regulate' internet companies

VinceH
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Re: Book stores.

"Remember that it's the same woman who decided to lead Brexit after campaigning for Remain for 2 years."

I've always been a bit sceptical about that - I expected her to come out in favour of Leave.

And looking at now, with the way she's been going about it as PM, I still find it surprising that she came down on the side of Remain.

The sums. They don't add up.

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'My PC needs to lose weight' says user with FAT filesystem

VinceH
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Re: SQL => Sequel

But hang on, isn't SQL short for 'sequential' ? I'm sure it must be so, because that tech expert Dido Harding explained that it was a sequential injection that was at the heart of the TalkTalk hack.

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Microsoft's cunning plan to make Bing the leading search engine: Bribery

VinceH
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Being cynical, it's about more than just getting people to use Bing - given what's on offer, it's also about getting more people to use the Microsoft Store. And about getting more traffic to slurp on.

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Spacecraft spots possible signs of frozen water on the Moon

VinceH
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Facepalm

Re: Frozen water?

The joke's past now, but I should probably have made it a "marking our territory on behalf the USA" type thing. Ho hum.

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VinceH
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Thumb Up

Re: Frozen water?

"Hey, Buzz, what are you doing in that crater?"

"Just taking a leak, Neil."

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Nest leaves competition in the dust with new smart camera

VinceH
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Don't forget that if you have an Android phone and don't set the appropriate option, Google does this as well - in the name of "backups" - so Nest aren't alone; they're just doing what their adoptive daddy does, but using convenience as an excuse, rather than backups.

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VinceH
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"Cloudy again... why do companies keep thinking that adding cloud to something is a good idea?

Will this work if the servers go down or is it another paperweight?"

^This.

If an "internet of things" thing is not fully functional as just a "thing" thing if there's no internet connection and/or you don't want to pay a sub, then it is a useless thing and I don't want it.

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Microsoft Master File Table bug exploited to BSOD Windows 7, 8.1

VinceH
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Re: Applications are vulnerable?

"I really don't know why people that don't need to run Windows, still run Windows..."

I do - and, I suspect, so do you.

It's because a huge number of "people that don't need to run Windows" are mostly just ordinary people, who simply buy their computers off the shelves in places like PC World, Argos, or wherever, and just use it with whatever it comes with.

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It was bound to happen: Amazon launches first grocery store

VinceH
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Re: Do they substitute products if unavailable?

On the upside, in the context of general groceries, their habit of identifying previous purchases and suggesting you buy it again makes a little more sense.

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Three Nigerians sentenced to 235 years in prison for online scamming

VinceH
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WTF?

Re: Not just the Nigerian's Anymore

Wait - are you saying it's not legit?

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Astroboffins spot a new type of galaxy bursting with stars

VinceH
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Re: Artist's Impression..

"NASA and ESA spend all that money sending an artist out there to paint it, and you complain?"

Yes, they should be sending professional photographers. As well as providing more accurate images, doing so would mean the missions don't take as long - it's quick and easy to take a photograph, even for a professional when compared to an artist, who would take considerably longer.

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Uber New York class action alleges passengers overcharged $7.43m per month

VinceH
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@gnasher729

"If you think things are repeating"

I don't. I must have been too subtle: My point was that the case reported on in this article is more closely related to the case reported on in the one I linked to, than the one linked in the article itself.

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VinceH
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"If this sounds familiar, it's because just days ago, Uber drivers in New York made a similar claim that they were getting underpaid because fare estimates were not accounting for taxes and fees."

Umm... If this sounds familiar, look a bit further back than a few days:

Overcharge customers, underpay the serfs. Who else but Uber (allegedly)

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Google now mingles everything you've bought with everywhere you've been

VinceH
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Unhappy

Re: "Gave them permission to do this?"

"Your free to give them your data."

I think for most people that should probably be "You're free to not realise you're giving them your data, or the implications of doing so."

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AI-powered dynamic pricing turns its gaze to the fuel pumps

VinceH
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Where the hell are you buying fuel at over £13 per litre? Are you bonkers?

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VinceH
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Re: IMHO Pure Naked Greed...

"If it costs you £1 in fuel to do the round trip across town to put 50l in to save 50p then only a fool would do it."

And yet, surprisingly enough, there are fools that do it. These are people who don't follow through the headline price by doing the maths to find out what the actual cost to them is (or would have been at the first station). I've known people like that, and in some cases managed to get the point across - but not in all cases.

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How good are selfies these days? Good enough to fool Samsung Galaxy S8 biometrics

VinceH
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Re: RFID ??

"Girls could use tonsil recognition, as they do most things with their mouths open."

That's just silly - what if they've had their tonsils removed?

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LastPass now supports 2FA auth, completely undermines 2FA auth

VinceH
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Re: Better alternatives...

@PNGuinn

"I think I'll start keeping essential security info in a a camber pot under the bed. Is dampness / pong a security advantage?

Security by obscurity and all that?"

That's not security by obscurity - it's security by odorosity.

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VinceH
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As NonSSL-Login says, algorithms like those can be reverse engineered fairly easily. Also, the example you give using first/last or second/fourth letters brings with it a serious limitation in the total number of computed passwords, and there will likely be a number of password clashes.

Stick with KeePass.

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Crooks use WannaCrypt hysteria as hook for BT-branded phishing emails

VinceH
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Re: Shortened URL's

I wouldn't normally click on a link to a cat video (because not a cat person) but your rant about adverts made me do so out of curiosity.

I got straight to the video itself, with not an advert to be seen. Luck? Or good settings in NoScript et al?

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Ur dumped lol: Folk may be able to leave mobile contracts via text

VinceH
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Re: Why not?

Agreed.

The ease of leaving problem isn't just limited to mobile phone contracts, though. There are all manner of things where it's piss easy to sign up via a website, but to cancel requires a call and a sales pitch aimed at persuading you to continue paying. If you can sign up online, you should be able to cancel online.

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Man sues date for cinema texting fiasco, demands $17.31

VinceH
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Facepalm

Re: That's an "I know why you're single" moment

"That's on a red button that lights up in my head when I notice an unpleasant Critical Trait in someone."

Yeah... I get that same red light.

It's probably the reason I'm single.

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VinceH
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Pint

Re: Austin

Agreed - what a pity it's in a country I never want to go to!

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Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

VinceH
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Re: MP3

"Erm.. I bet 95% of people still use it and that will not change very quickly at all"

^ This.

I've encountered a few people that seem to think this is the end of the MP3 - but patent expiry doesn't in any way, shape, or form mean the format is suddenly going to stop being used, or that it's going to somehow die off overnight.

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Faking incontinence and other ways to scare off tech support scammers

VinceH
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Re: Lenny

Reminds me of about a hundred years ago, when I had a Nokia feature phone with the ability to play back a recording during a phone call. I had a few 'one sided' conversations recorded, and I'd prank people I knew by ringing them and starting one of the recordings. My favourite was a recording from a taxi firm trying to confirm a booking.

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