* Posts by Dr. Mouse

1711 posts • joined 22 May 2007

Trump inauguration DDoS protest is 'illegal', warn securobods

Dr. Mouse
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Re: LOL

The [USA] is the most in debt country in the world by far, and guess what, it's not trumps fault, yet.

The USA is also the largest economy in the world. In relation to GDP, it's been around the 100% mark for the last 4 years, growing slightly.

I have a sneaking suspicion that ANY president would have left office with the debt being higher. The past 8 years have been terrible, and most countries around the world (no matter how much they cut spending) are suffering from a deficit.

If the debt does come down over Trump's time in office, I reckon it'll have more to do with economic conditions than anything else.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: A sad day :(

It's a better world when everyone carries his own weight. It's not the job of a gummint (funded by the people) to bail out those who make bad decisions in life.

So what about those barely getting by, who make just enough to live in a low paid job. They have no money to put into a pension, or savings, but are working their arses off to keep a roof over the heads of themselves and their families. Have they just "made bad decisions in life"? If they loose their job, is it OK to let them starve because they "made bad decisions"?

In this world, there are some who really can't make more of themselves. This may be down to intelligence, their abilities, or just the job market. Not everyone in low pay is the lazy idiot many Americans (and others) seem to think they are.

Your reward for "making good decisions" (and having advantages) is a better job, more money (even after taxes and benefits are taken into account), and an overall better quality of life. Be thankful for that, and stop demonising people who don't have the luxuries you take for granted (like being able to afford to pay into a pension, or being able to afford medical insurance and actually have life-saving surgery if they need it).

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Land of the Free

There's a difference between ever so slightly delaying a single bus and hobbling every bus in the nation until someone's little temper tantrum blows over.

So, it's like a protest march where thousands of people gather, blocking roads and access to buildings? That sounds like many peaceful protests to me.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Land of the Free

Trying to break something as a form of protest isn't exactly a legal form of protest

A DoS doesn't break anything. It's the equivalent of getting a load of people to ring a phone number to clog it up. Or getting a load of people to gather outside a building to make it difficult for others to get in or out.

DoS is, IMHO, a legitimate form of protest.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: 1984

"Ok, my post was rather hastily written, but I'm not going to defend points that you have attributed to me by assumption!"

As I said, I couldn't understand the post, so I stated my assumptions first based on what I could understand from your post and asked you to correct me if I was wrong in them. Thank you for explaining.

However, on this explanation, I believe this is not correct in itself. I think it's perfectly acceptable to try to undermine policies you disagree with. The election was fought with radically polarised views. If someone disagrees with one of Trump's policies, why should they not try to undermine it? Congress certainly did with most of Obama's policies over the last 8 years.

Trump's success or failure will be judged by the results of his time. However, to discount a public figure's personality in judgement of him is a mistake. He will be in the world's view, and how he comes across is important. If he goes round offending people, especially other world leaders, this will be damaging for America.

As to racial issues, I'm not American, but the view I get from outside is that these were made worse by the Trump campaign. His attacks on different races, nationalities, and religions were heard throughout the world, so I wouldn't be surprised if this was true. I do know that it's been widely reported that race-related incidents surged on his election. I know that doesn't automatically mean they had improved with Obama in power, but the feeling I get is that they would have been better without Trump's campaign.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: 1984

"The Left needs to hang up that line until they start confronting Islam about how they treat women. Until then, they're not only liars but huge hypocrites."

Personally, I do, but I also respect their culture. Also, only where it actually happens. Most I have met have a perfectly acceptable attitude toward women, including those in Muslim countries. The Right's current obsession with Muslims often blinds them to the fact that they are stereotyping, and not all are how they describe.

American culture does not endorse denigration of women, so an American leader who does so is worse than a leader of a Muslim country (or person in a Muslim country) who does.

And saying "that's just Trump" is not acceptable either. You are basically saying he's a complete dick, but we don't care who he offends. He's not a comedian, he's going to be the leader of the most powerful nation on earth, and going around offending everyone will come back to bite, not only him, but the whole country.

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Dr. Mouse
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"Ok, so what you're saying is that both sides are just as bad as each other and they should both grow up and accept that in a democracy you don't always get what you want?"

Let's get out the vote! Let's make our voices heard!

We've been given the right to choose between a douche and a turd.

It's democracy in action! Put your freedom to the test.

A big fat turd or a stupid douche. Which do you like best?

I seriously believe that, if the Democrats had chosen ANYONE other than Clinton, they'd have easily won. Even with HER as the opposition, Trump got fewer votes.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Land of the Free

@codejunky:

So because a candidate who is truly repulsive to many, and who won fewer votes than his rival, won the election, someone is calling for people to use their democratic right to protest against his offensive policies and behaviour.

There, FTFY.

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Dr. Mouse
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Coffee/keyboard

look up "Brave Agent Pubeit"

LMAO, I just did and thank you! I won't even send you the bill for my new keyboard!

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: 1984

I'm just astonished at how obvious the vested powers have been in throwing scorn upon the post of the President of the US of A.

He was voted in, once he is the president and objections are against the 'office', not the man, and shows a complete disregard for the will of the voting public and the democratic process.

We all knew they were slimy bribe taking, nest feathering, lying bastards, but I never thought to see the day when they advertised that fact!

What?

I'm going to make an assumption here, as your post is not particularly legible. I assume you are saying that;

a) All the bad things said about Trump are made up,

b) When someone holds office, you are automatically attacking the office if you say anything bad about the person,

c) If you say you dislike a politician or say bad things about them, you are disregarding "the will of the voting public and the democratic process", and

d) All the people who are saying bad things about Trump are corrupt.

If I am mistaken, feel free to correct me.

I would counter a & c by saying it's extremely unlikely that all are made up, and some are demonstrably true. His attitude towards women, demonstrated by public behaviour, is disgusting. His treatment of anyone who disagrees with him does not demonstrate any ability to articulate a defence of his own position, and relies on shouting people down rather than a reasoned debate. He refused to show his tax records, something convention has required of presidential candidates in the US for many years, on very spurious grounds. He has refused to divest himself of business assets or put them out of his own reach, leaving a strong potential for conflicts of interest. All in all, he comes across as untrustworthy and potentially corrupt himself, in my own personal opinion.

As to b, that's complete poppycock! Someone can be a great person but crap at their jobs, and vice versa. Even so, by saying you dislike Trump as President, you are not saying that the office is bad, you are saying that the current holder of that office is.

As for c, again that's BS. Even ignoring the fact that Clinton got a higher proportion of the vote than Trump, just because someone was elected doesn't mean you have to like it, agree with it, or stay silent. Protest is part of the democratic process, too, as is a free press and freedom of speech. You sound like you just want to silence anyone who doesn't agree with you, because your side won, "ner ner na ner ner". Much the same approach is taken by Leave voters here in the UK, and it's just as wrong.

I wouldn't agree with breaking the law in protest (except in extreme circumstances, the USA's independence came from breaking the law, for instance), but engaging in peaceful protest is perfectly reasonable. And where, exactly, is the harm is someone wants to sit hitting refresh on the Whitehouse website? At worst, if the site goes down, they are hanging a curtain over a poster put up by the govt, which the govt just have to take down when they give up. It's not like it's a vital system or anything.

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IT team sent dirt file to Police as they all bailed from abusive workplace

Dr. Mouse
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"in this case the prosecution would have obtained evidence legally."

Exactly.

The police obtained evidence from a source. It doesn't matter how that source gained the information, as long as they were not in the employ/under the supervision of the police (e.g. an informant).

The police would need to verify the information (e.g. get a warrant and seize docs/computers/backups) to take them to court. The information provided would be used as supporting evidence to obtain the warrant.

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Uber coughs up $20m after 'lying about how much its drivers make'

Dr. Mouse
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Re: "anyone" is singular

Their is often used in the singular for non-gender-specific cases, and it doesn't warrant a [sic] IMHO.

Which word would you use in its place?

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Deadly Tesla smash probe: No recall needed, says Uncle Sam

Dr. Mouse
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I believe the driver is more at fault than the idiot who put their Winnebago on cruise control then went to make a cuppa. The difference being, in this case, all the Tesla manuals specifically state that it's not self-driving and you must remain attentive and ready to take back control.

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What's the biggest danger to the power grid? Hackers? Terrorists? Er, squirrels

Dr. Mouse
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In 2015, a fox shorting out a substation in Utah caused an outage that shut down an oxygen machine and led to the death of a patient.

In an era where all but the least important servers are protected by UPS, shouldn't a life-critical machine have a backup power supply?! Surely it wouldn't be too difficult to include a few hours of emergency power into it....

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Now that's a Blue Screen of Death: Windows 10 told me to jump off a cliff

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Forgot your meds this morning ?

"I think you have to be extremely deranged to see a subliminal suicide message in the picture+text."

To not see it, you must;

a) lack a sense of humour, and

b) have never been on the dark side of depression.

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Why the UK is unlikely to get an adequacy determination post Brexit

Dr. Mouse
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Really?

Wow, the security services are ignoring the law and doing whatever the hell they want? I'm shocked!

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Fatal genetic conditions could return in some 'three-parent' babies

Dr. Mouse
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Re: suck it darwin

so, we've figured a way to beat natural selection... because thats going to end well...

If this is your viewpoint, we have been "defeating natural selection" for thousands of years.

Natural selection/evolution involves mutations which make us better suited to our environment. Conversely, for a hell of a long time, humans have been adapting our environment to suit us. Similarly, we have discovered medicines which stop disease from killing off the weak.

If you want us to get back to your definition of natural selection, we would need to abandon all technological, medical and industrial advancements we have made, and go back to being hunter-gatherers living in caves. Oh, and not wear clothes: Our bodies will evolve fur if we need it.

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Robo-supercar hype biz Faraday Future has invented something – a new word for 'disrupt'

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Will it.....

While writing this I found myself taking a step back and realizing how far we've come in just a handful of years - it really wasn't long ago that electric cars were a laughing stock... "milk floats", "golf buggies", and so on. And now we're arguing about recharge time. Progress!

It's mind boggling, isn't it. I'm amazed at how far they've come on.

Let's think about this, though. How often does the "average" person do a 300+ mile trip? I would expect 2-3 times a year, tops. Given that, with the savings on fuel, it would probably work out close to cost effective to hire a car for those times you need the range*. In fact, it's something I've wondered about for car manufacturers: Nissan, for instance, could probably afford to include free or discounted car hire to Leaf owners for their long trips.

* Assuming a commuter doing 30mi/day (about 8000mi/yr), and comparing to 50mpg in a fossil fuel powered car, you'd save around £650/yr in fuel costs. This could get you about 3 weeks car hire of a decent sized car. For someone doing a single long distance 2-week trip, plus a couple of 2-3 day hires, you'd be at around break even. If you did more "normal" miles a year the saving, hence the amount of time you could hire a car, increases.

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US Supreme Court to hear case that may ruin Lone Star patent trolls

Dr. Mouse
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Re: So if this goes through, everyone has to be sued in their state of incorporation

My proposed sensible patent policy:'NO'

Forgive me if I'm wrong, but you seem to be suggesting that noone should get patents at all. Basically people should have no way to protect their intellectual property.

So, I'm an engineer. If I was to spend years designing and developing, say, a radically new car engine design, it is acceptable for another company to come along and copy my design? I should not be allowed to make a penny from my own design, which I have spent years on?

I would have to disagree with you on that. While I believe patent law, especially in the USA, needs reform, it certainly should NOT be abandoned.

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Meat pies in SPAAAAAAAAAAAACE!

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Time to raise a pint to Lesters memory

(I presume PARIS is a failed dream at this point?)

Erm... didn't PARIS actually happen? Or did I imagine that? If so, I have some BIG mental health problems...

I think you may have meant LOHAN. I've not heard anything about it for ages. Last I heard it was stalled because they couldn't get clearance from the FAA.

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Blue sky basic income thinking is b****cks

Dr. Mouse
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Re: "Radically simplify taxation and benefits"

A Basic Income scheme would have roughly the same complexity as the current benefits system, while having far more claimants. Administering it would cost far more, even ignoring the increased actual payout.... The cost of living (esp. housing and transport) varies across the country. Disability. Children. Single or has a partner. Top-up of salary (working tax credit etc).

A Basic Income system would pay out a set amount per adult. It may be that it would need to be area-specific, especially for London, but should definitely not be inflated for "rich" areas (e.g. housing costs in a high-income area).

Working tax credit is no longer needed as everyone receives a set benefit.

Single or with a partner doesn't matter, each individual gets a set amount. There would probably need to be an amount paid to each child's primary caregiver, but this, too, should cover only the basics required to live.

Disability and a maybe few other types of benefit would still be required, but I doubt their administration would cost any more than they currently do. Therefore there are still the savings on administration of most in- and out-of-work benefits.

As for taxation, there could then be a much simpler tax system. No personal allowance, fewer exemptions, fewer levels, and (I would suggest) no different treatment of different kinds of income. I believe it could just be done as a flat rate tax on all income (except the UBI, no point giving then grabbing back through tax).

Your assertions basically amount to keeping the same system but calling it UBI. The entire point of UBI would be a radical simplification of the tax and benefits systems, without which it would be pointless.

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Dr. Mouse
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The function of a business in society is to make it's owner(s) money. Anything else is socialist bollocks.

I would tend to disagree.

The core function of a business in society is to supply the product(s) and/or service(s) they produce. They will receive compensation in some form based on their value to those who consume them. Making money for the owner(s) is a by-product of actually performing it's core function.

The focus on making money for the owner(s) is what screws a business up. It should concentrate first on it's core function, and the money will flow from that.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Mixed feelings

@Phil O'Sophical:

Firstly, nice name!

are Starbucks/beer/cigarettes/Sky TV essentials or luxuries?

Luxuries. Essentials are pretty much shelter (basic housing and power) and enough food to survive. Anything else is a luxury which should be worked for.

Who do you pay this basic income to?

Every adult.

Do you pay more to large families, and if so how do you stop people creating large families just to get more money? What about single parents?

We are getting into details now, and I don't have all the answers. For this and the rest, most of these issues are present in any social security system. Therefore unless one would argue for the removal of social security systems in general (and I certainly wouldn't), it's not an argument against the basic income. These issues need to be dealt with no matter how "benefits" are dished out.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Mixed feelings

Work-shy. I think that needs unpacking a bit.

It's not important to my main argument, but I meant "can work but choose not to and just rely on state benefits".

I do not believe there are as many of these as a lot of people think, but I believe there are more than a lot of other people think. These are the people who choose to have a kid, get a council house/housing benefit, and live on what the state provides. This is completely unacceptable, as it means other people are working to support them in their idleness. I don't know how to deal with this, except for my above assertion that the basic income should only cover what's required to live, but it's something which would have to be looked at (and heavily discouraged if the system was to work).

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Dr. Mouse
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Mixed feelings

I have mixed feelings about this article.

Firstly, I agree that the Luddite thinking is wrong: Automation may kill off jobs, but other jobs will be created to fill the gaps. The population will reskill and things will continue as they are.

However, I believe that a true basic income along with tax system changes would be a way to radically simplify taxation and benefits. If one was to figure out a sensible minimum liveable income (i.e. it would cover the most basic housing, food and bills, no more) and pay that to all, but then applied a higher but simpler tax to all income (maybe a flat rate, even), most would not loose out, and the cost of administering the system (for the government and for individuals) would fall drastically.

We would, potentially, still need a system to root out the work-shy, but that's always going to be the case while we have a social security system.

It's not without it's downsides, but the upsides have the potential to outweigh them drastically.

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Europe to launch legal action against countries over diesel emissions cheating

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Oh, here we go again!

And this is the crux of the argument, by fining a country, does it achieve anything? If it does, then good, but as Britain has been fined numerous times, it seems it will do nothing but take money from the population. All the while, the company responsible for polluting the air gets off scot free.

True enough, but that is the fault of the UK government for ignoring it's obligations under law and international treaties. If you want something done about the blatant wasting of your tax money, write to your MP and protest against (or lobby) the government. They are the ones wasting taxpayer money.

The EU are doing nothing more than trying to (ensure the member governments) uphold the law.

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Sysadmin told to spend 20+ hours changing user names, for no reason

Dr. Mouse
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Re: From a user's point of view...

Strict naming conventions can be both a help an a hindrance. Automation loves it, up until it breaks.

However, these people do have an option available to them, the same one as my ex-wife took. Her employer insisted that their legal name be used on all official communications. Her given name was Christine, her grandmother's name, which she always felt was stuffy and old fashioned. Everyone called her Chrissy, but work wouldn't allow it... Until she changed her name by deed poll.

If you really hate your name, that's the best option. If you just dislike it and don't want the hassle, suck it up.

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Dr. Mouse
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I agree that he should get confirmation, in writing, that the 2IC is ordering this change and accepts that:

* It will take X time per user account,

* May break things (risk assess it),

* Will not be able to be interrupted during the process, so all other jobs to be on hold,

* He will accept responsibility for any down time or unintended consequences of this (pointless and stupid) change.

Ensure that, in the confirmation, he makes clear his reluctance to do it and belief that the risks outweigh the "benefits".

Then he should get on with the job. His arse is covered in case of problems, but if the boss tells you to do something, you either do it or look for work elsewhere.

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Who killed Pebble? Easy: The vulture capitalists

Dr. Mouse
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Re: "made by Real People for Real People"

Bill Hicks says it all:

https://youtu.be/RbAAVLcMzr4

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The UK's Investigatory Powers Act allows the State to tell lies in court

Dr. Mouse
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So what would happen...

...if you refused to perjure yourself?

"I am unable to answer that question, on the grounds that the law would require me to perjure myself"

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Standards body warned SMS 2FA is insecure and nobody listened

Dr. Mouse
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Re: "the statement has had virtually no impact some six months after its announcement"

"This is something, therefor they are doing it"

This.

Unless it is going to affect their bottom line, companies don't care about security. They will, at best, risk assess the available options and choose the one which gives them the most profit. At worst, they will choose the cheapest option, and say "We haz securitiez!"

However, there is also another thing they must deal with: Users. The normal user doesn't care enough to understand, they want convenience. This is why most don't use strong or multiple passwords, they want to be able to log in easily, without all the hassle. If they must use a 2FA system, they want the easiest, and a text message is often the simplest for them.

Finally, there are additional hurdles. For example, not everyone has a decent data bundle. If they must rely on an internet connection on their mobile for 2FA, but have only limited data, they would probably have to turn data on just to log in on another device. A text message, however, will "just work". I expect this is more of a problem in "poorer" countries, but I know of many people this applies to here in the UK.

Phew, that turned into a bit of a ramble.... Not even certain what my point was any more lol.

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Local TV presenter shouted 'f*cking hell' to open news bulletin

Dr. Mouse
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Coffee/keyboard

Re: Who cares?

@gazthejourno

Amazing come back, well played, sir!

See icon, though...

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Brexit means Brexit: What the heck does that mean...

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Goldsmith lost in Richmond because of it. Apparently.

Do you children think it'll be fun to be moved around from home to home, school to school etc? Or is daddy simply a narccisist on an ego trip and expects little wifey and children to follow him obediently wherever he goes?

Actually, I don't currently have a wife or children. When I do, I will not move them without discussion and agreement.

Right now, I have the right to move myself around the EU for work or pleasure. If there is no work in the UK, or I can get a better job in the EU, I can just up sticks and go.

I want that right to continue. I would also like my children, when I have them, to have that right. If I gain Polish citizenship then I, and my children, will have that right.

What is wrong with wanting my children to enjoy a right which could be extremely useful at some point in their lives? Or would you prefer your children to be stuck in this country should something bad happen and the country goes to the wall?

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Goldsmith lost in Richmond because of it. Apparently.

"Newsflash genius - leaving the EU doesn't surrender any personal rights"

Yes it does: British citizens can, and do, currently move around to EU to look for work, start a business, or enjoy retirement or generally hang out.

Exactly.

Even if you ignore the "move for work" aspect (which, without freedom of movement of workers, will probably require a Visa), if we are outside the Customs union, even going on holiday will be a larger hassle.

It is definitely the loss of a personal right.

Personally, I am in the process of getting Polish citizenship (or at least confirming it, I have Polish ancestry so, technically, already am a citizen, just need the paperwork) mainly so that I don't lose the rights of EU citizenship. I'm considering also getting German citizenship as a backup (and because it'll be fun to have 3 passports and 3 citizenships). For myself, and my children, I want the freedom to move around and take a job where I want/can.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Goldsmith lost in Richmond because of it. Apparently.

it would have been pointless. Leaving the EU is a process of negotiation, the government cannot dictate the result

BUT leaving the EU does not equal leaving the EEA/EFTA (i.e. Hard Brexit) as a simple matter of logic. Leaving the EEA is a step beyond what was asked in the referendum.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Codification of existing practice?

"My personal opinion is that it is arguably reasonable that the Intelligence Services have enhanced access to information. There is a less strong argument for the police having access without there being an extremely robust system... Quite why HMRC, Ambulance Services, the Food Standards Agency and the Gambling Commission should have access, I have no idea."

I'm against the law in it's entirety for a number of reasons, but I agree with this.

I can see the justification for the Intelligence Services, and potentially police terrorism/serious crime departments, to have access. I can see the justification for the Police in general to be able to get access with a warrant.

I see no justification whatsoever for the rest to have access, especially without a warrant.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Goldsmith lost in Richmond because of it. Apparently.

"It's a bit like a doctor asking for consent to remove a badly damaged little finger that would be tricky to repair, and then, after you say ok go ahead, telling you he's actually taking it off at the wrist, or maybe the elbow."

This.

I have heard many Leave voters saying "I voted for us to leave the whole lot/reduce immigration/some other thing".

Nope. You voted to leave the EU, because that was the question. You may have voted because of X, but that's not what you voted for.

The government would have fulfilled it's obligations* with respect to the referendum if we left the EU, but stayed in the EEA/EFTA. Doing any more than that is beyond the democratic mandate it has been given.

Although if they do that, a large bunch of Leavers will whinge that that's not what they meant or wanted.

No matter what happens, though, I'm fairly certain a majority will be unhappy with the result. Taking a few scenarios:

- Hard Brexit: I'm fairly certain that a decent chunk of people who voted Leave wanted a Soft Brexit of some description, enough to tip it over the 50% unhappy when you include the Remainers.

- Soft Brexit: A large proportion of the Leave side, plus a large proportion of the Remain side, would be unhappy, no matter the terms.

- Stay in EU: More than 50% voted Leave, so a majority unhappy (even including those who only voted in protest).

- Any option: All failures or downturns for many years to come will be blamed on the decision made by the Govt/Parliament on this, so at some point over the next decade or so, every person in the country will be unhappy with whatever decision has been made, unless that exactly fits with their own particular idea and they have not changed their opinion at all.

* I say "obligations", although it is not technically obliged to do anything at all, legally or procedurally.

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Renewed calls for Tesla to scrap Autopilot after number of crashes

Dr. Mouse
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'The problem with the current "self-driving" systems is they assume that a human who isn't paying attention can suddenly be brought back into the decision loop in a split second, if the computer gets overwhelmed'

As long as you are talking about Tesla's Autopilot (a reasonable assumption given that's what this article was about), it is your attitude which is wrong.

That is, the "human who isn't paying attention" should be paying attention!

It is an intelligent cruise control system, not a self-driving car. The driver should always be concentrating and be ready to take control back. If they aren't, they are driving without due care and attention.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Maybe consumer groups...

"But do we really need to test this generation on public thoroughfares?"

Should cruise control/lane guidance/collision warning & avoidance technology "not be tested on public thoroughfares"? These technologies are there to assist the driver. They can improve safety and the enjoyment of driving.

All Tesla's Autopilot is is a smart cruise control system. Anyone who can't understand that (when it is in the manual, the car tells them every time they turn it on, and it was explained to them when they bought the car) is an idiot who shouldn't be on the road, and should be taken to court for driving without due care and attention.

Personally, I believe they should change the name, just to reinforce the point. But the issue is, generally, idiots driving them (or not, as the case may be). The same idiots would end up in accidents anyway.

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Plastic fiver: 28 years' work, saves acres of cotton... may have killed less than ONE cow*

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Is there a petition to insist that we DON'T change the new £5 note?

Ditto

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Google turns on free public NTP servers that SMEAR TIME

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Smearing

What about sub-second units?

Taking it as you have said, for events which are timed at the milli/microsecond level, you could have an event which occurred after another appearing before it. Or else, you would need to either "smear" that last second, or repeat the final milli/micro/nano/picosecond.

The "smearing" approach is probably the most sensible method in the vast majority of cases.

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UK's new Snoopers' Charter just passed an encryption backdoor law by the backdoor

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Island mentality

"I'm sorry, but that's not even satire -- it's just bollocks."

Is it?

We have lost our rights to privacy in one fell swoop with this law.

The public have been showing their hatred of foreigners (racist and xenophobic attacks up by a large amount since referendum).

Democracy has been pretty bad for a while: No democratic vote has been run on an honest campaign for a fair while, all are done using half truths, twisted logic, and outright lies. Very few actually fact check anything they are told. Democracy without informed opinion is no true democracy.

I can see a policy in future whereby a mobile device brought into the country would have to be checked for compliant (i.e. compromised) software, and confiscated if not.

We are not quite at the point he describes yet, but that's the trajectory, and it's closer than you may think.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Warrant Canary

"It's fantasy to think that warrant canaries provide some sort of legal escape route."

I do not know how someone could be prosecuted for it, though.

You place a factual statement, which is not illegal, on your website. When asked to provide info, that statement is no longer factual. You *Must*, therefore, remove it from your website, or else be done by, say, ASA. Or even be sued when someone finds out. If this is classified as having informed the public, you are put in the position of having to do one illegal thing or another.

If I was on a jury in a case like this, I would conclude that the catch-22 was a get out. No matter the judges instructions, I would find not guilty, as it was the only moral thing a person or company could do in that situation.

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Jeremy Hunt: Telcos must block teens from sexting each other

Dr. Mouse
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Facepalm

OK, let's ignore the technical hurdles for now. We know that they exist, but we also know that most politicians don't have a clue about technology, so put it on the back burner and look at other issues.

Firstly, on "cyber bullying", they are asking a private company to scan each and every message sent by under 18s, looking for key words/phrases. This is difficult in itself, will take a lot of processing power, and would end up with enough false positives to drive people nuts. Especially those who, like me, use insults as a method of expressing friendship. This will just push people onto alternative platforms.

Second, on sexting, I'm sure it would be possible to identify sexually explicit images. Google, for instance, has done a lot of work on this for image searching. However, again, it will just push people onto alternative platforms.

Third, how will they know if a user is under 18? It's well known that people lie about their age on Facebook et al. One of my cousin's FB pages shows their age as several years older than they are, because they signed up below FB's minimum age and lied on the form. Are they going to insist on people providing ID to sign up?

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What's the first emotion you'd give an AI that might kill you? Yes, fear

Dr. Mouse
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No necessarily good

Look, over the centuries, at those who have ruled by fear.

What happens when one of the AIs learns to fear us to the extent that to attacks rather than acquiescing?

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Six car-makers team to build European 'leccy car charge bar network

Dr. Mouse
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Oh no...

We're going back to the bad old days of mobile phones, having to carry adaptors for each charging standard. That'll be fun!

Also, 400 stations across Europe? Less than 15 per country? Yeah, that's going to make a HUGE difference...

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Investigatory Powers Act signed into UK law by Queen

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Here's the full list...

Holy ****!!!!

So, we were sold on the premise that this was for investigating terrorism and serious crime. Yet NHS trusts, fire depts and the Food Standards Agencies are able to access them?!?!

This is even worse than I thought!!

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Vegans furious as Bank of England admits ‘trace’ of animal fat in £5 notes

Dr. Mouse
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"I do believe the Royal Mint has made an error here, as there will be negative PR. "

Quick correction: If comments below are correct, the production of the vast majority of polymers uses animal products as a lubricant at some stage, so will contain trace amounts of them. So, if they are going to use polymers, they probably had no choice.

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Dr. Mouse
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You don't have to be vegan to think that unnecessary cruelty should be avoided.

Certainly, cruelty should be avoided. I don't think there's even such a thing as necessary cruelty.

However, how do you know that cruelty is involved in production of the tallow in the notes? It sounds like what you are saying is that use of animal products is, by definition, cruel, and I would beg to differ on that.

If we look at the animal kingdom, most carnivores kill their prey in much more cruel manners than humans do. We generally take steps to ensure the animal is stunned before killing them.

In addition, AFAIK, tallow is generally produced as a by product of other industries, such as food production. There is logic to saying that, if the animal will be killed for food, anyway, why not make the best possible use of all parts of it?

I do believe the Royal Mint has made an error here, as there will be negative PR. However, if anyone wishes to stop accepting or using them, that is their right*. I'm sure it will be a massive inconvenience to them (for example, if they refuse a fiver as change in a shop, they'll either get a bunch of bulky, heavy coins or be told the transaction cannot be completed). But, then again, vegans are used to being inconvenienced (and inconveniencing others), so they probably won't mind that.

* WRT legal tender, see http://www.royalmint.com/aboutus/policies-and-guidelines/legal-tender-guidelines

In short, it is only a legal requirement to accept legal tender as payment of a debt.

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BOFH: The Hypochondriac Boss and the non-random sample

Dr. Mouse
Silver badge

Brilliant

suddenly I'm selling a chair endorsed by a certified IT professional with a background in health and usability research... And not a suggestible hypochondriac with the IT skillset of a potato

Well done once again, Simon!

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