* Posts by BillG

1250 posts • joined 29 Jan 2010

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Finally: Historic Eudora email code goes open source

BillG
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Boffin

Re: Keep it going

Same here. I fondly recall Eudora, with all attachments in a separate directory in their original form. Made searching attachments very easy. Was I on Win98 at the time?

I eventually was forced to move to Outlook, although I can't remember why. I found some software that converted all my Eudora email and folders into an Outlook PST file.

Strange how one can be nostalgic for old tech.

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Das blinkenlights are back thanks to RPi revival of the PDP-11

BillG
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Holmes

Re: I cut my teeth on a PDP-11

bombastic bob wrote: I did some interesting things with assembly language

Real programmers have programmed in assembly at least once.

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Facebook Android app caught seeking 'superuser' clearance

BillG
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Mushroom

Re: Oh Sorreee! Sorree!

No excuses.

No forgiveness.

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Bowel down: Laxative brownies brought to colleague's leaving bash

BillG
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Devil

Revenge is a dish best served wet

Few years back a coworker was complaining someone was stealing his lunch out of the company fridge. So one day he puts a powerful laxative in his sandwich. Sure enough, come lunch time, his lunch sack was gone from the fridge.

Later we noticed the office quiet guy, the one always kissing up to the boss, making multiple runs to the rest room! So technically, this was not illegal, was it?

Laxatives have their place.

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And THIS is how you do it, Apple: Huawei shames Cupertino with under-glass sensor

BillG
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Thumb Up

Re: How often is a reboot necessary?

I like to reboot once a week. It's a safe thing to do.

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Warren Buffett says cryptocurrency attracts charlatans, AI won’t change investing

BillG
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FAIL

Re: ROFLMAO

“Cryptocurrencies will come to a bad ending because nothing is being produced in the way of value from an asset. There is also a problem that it draws in a lot of charlatans who are trying to create exchanges or whatever it may be.”

This is why carbon credits exchanges failed.

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Pentagon in uproar: 'China's lasers' make US pilots shake in Djibouti

BillG
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Black Helicopters

Re: Laser canon and sonic death rays.

@thames write: This smacks of the American story about the Cuban sonic death ray supposedly being directed at their embassy personnel in Havana. That would be the Cuban sonic death ray that no other country finds credible.

It's somewhat credible. Ever been in a car with all the windows open, with the wind and speed just right so you feel the sub-20Hz vibration pummeling your body? You can't hear it, but it can make you very uncomfortable and even nauseous.

There is also off-the-shelf riot equipment intended to hit a crowd with sound waves, increasing their anxiety. Freaky things happen at very low frequencies.

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Autonomy ex-CFO Hussain guilty of fraud: He cooked the books amid $11bn HP gobble

BillG
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Facepalm

@AC wrote: ...if the buyer becomes contractually liable at the date of the contract that can be classed as a sale and booked as revenue in the P&L - and nominally you can even do that before the contract start date, so getting the customer to sign just at the end of the reporting period gives carte blanche to flip the revenues into "last period" or "next period" as required.

No, you can't.

I've seen organizations play that shell game. You pre-book the revenues you expect next quarter for this quarter. Then when next quarter starts and you actually receive the cash from the customer, you have to go back and subtract the revenue from last quarter and add it to this quarter (unless you log it twice, in which case be prepared for jail). Since nobody goes back to look at last quarter, you don't get caught.

The rules of accounting, as well as the law, states you can only log money as received from the customer, when you actually receive the money from the customer. Duh.

It's a game to cover up poor cash flow and it fools no one with any decent experience. It's completely unethical, but if everyone in your group is doing it you don't get into trouble. The problem is if you keep doing it, it all piles up. It's the poor marketing schlub playing this math game that gets in trouble, and not the boss that ordered him to do it.

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Revenge pornography ban tramples free speech, law tossed out – where else but Texas!

BillG
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WTF?

Re: Education, education, education

My partner and I exchanged a few smutty images when dating

Not a smart idea in any context.

A few years back I bought a used phone off eBay. When I examined the memory I found no smutty pictures, but I did find family photos and - shocker - a photo of the previous owner's driver's license! I wonder what I might have found had I run an undeleter on the memory. And, with the Snowden revelations, we know that certain agencies read all our text messages and share the smutty photos.

Absolutely not should anyone send any identifiable smutty images.

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Reg writer Richard went to the cupboard, seeking a Windows Phone...

BillG
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Thumb Up

Re: I use windows phones (because no one else will)

The title I am replying to ("because no one else will") is very telling.

See, it's funny, but while Windows on your laptop is to some the mark of a conformist, Windows on your phone is definitely the mark of a rebel.

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Tech bribes: What's the WORST one you've ever been offered?

BillG
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Go

Re: Why don't you just tell them...

Back in the 90's I was an FAE for a semiconductor company. The woman that was the head buyer at one of our Fortune 500 customers really liked the guy that was our director of marketing. She indicated she would send millions of dollars of business our way if she could have an intimate weekend with him.

Rumor is when our division VP heard of this, his response was "I'll pay for the hotel".

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Facebook admits: Apps were given users' permission to go into their inboxes

BillG
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Facepalm

RE: Are there really so many people so stupid..

Are there really so many people so stupid not to question the business model behind this before sharing their data?

Yes.

I lurk on Twitter for a hashtag for a popular sci-fi show M-F. Fairly active conversation. There is one dodgy Twitter account, with about 1000 (purchased?) followers but only following 30 people, posts using emotionally manipulative language. Let's understand something right off - if you tweet directly to this account, your account gets suspended. Except if you have a verified account (dumb enough to give your phone number) if you tweet directly to this person you get shadowbanned or locked out of your account. This is consistent and predictable.This is open and obvious and everyone admits it's happening.

So what happens? People tweet directly to this person! And get suspended/shadowbanned/locked-out! Then complain later, then when their account gets restored THEY TWEET THEM AGAIN!!!! AND THEY GET SUSPENDED/SHADOWBANNED AGAIN!

When their account gets restored THEY TWEET THEM AGAIN!!!! AND THEY GET SUSPENDED/SHADOWBANNED AGAIN!

When you confront them they reply oh, this is such a nice elderly woman ('cause their profile says so?) and I'm going to tweet them. AND THEY GET SUSPENDED/SHADOWBANNED AGAIN! So they create a new account and the same thing happens. Again and again and again. They admit it happens, then they do it again.

The kicker is they are surprised each and every time they are suspended/shadowbanned/locked-out. This stupidity just blows me away.

The conclusion I've drawn is that the majority of people on social media are dysfunctional when it comes to cause/effect.

Yes, there are so many people that are this stupid.

Reminds me of an old saying, "You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, and from that you can make a pretty good living".

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Facebook crosses off one legal headache, another pops up: Server blueprint theft spat with Bladeroom settled, but...

BillG
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Megaphone

Re: Zuck will say nothing of significance

@AC wrote: "I'll take the 5th" or "I know nothing" to every question after spending several minutes conferring with the 20-30 lawyers he will bring with him.

More like "we could have done better" and "we have implemented new procedures" and "Your privacy is [snicker] very important [snicker] [snork] to us at Facebook HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!"

20-30 lawyers? Maybe multiply that by 10. Congressional hearings are just shows for the public so the career politicians can pretend to do something. Unless someone says "fuck" or a congresshuman embarrasses themselves with overly-dramatic posturing this will be quickly forgotten.

Facebook crosses off one legal headache, another pops up

Hail Hyra?

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Facebook dynamites its own APIs amid data slurp scandals, wrecks data slurp applications

BillG
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Devil

Re: The 'Shadow Profile' Economy

It's easy. Just don't use Facebook, block 3rd party cookies, and

I AM MARK ZUCKER-BORG!,YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION WILL BE ASSIMILATED! AND SOLD WITHOUT YOUR CONSENT! YOUR COMPLIANCE IS MANDATORY! LAWS ARE IRRELEVANT! PRIVACY IS IRRELEVANT! PRIVACY STATEMENTS ARE IRRELEVANT! RESISTANCE IS FUTILE! YOU WILL COMPLY!

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Facebook exec extracts foot from mouth: We didn't really mean growth matters more than human life

BillG
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Devil

Re: all those billions in profits

Bosworth said he was just trying to be provocative. "I don't agree with the post today and I didn't agree with it even when I wrote it,"

What a steaming pile of public relations dung.

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Probe: How IBM ousts older staff, replaces them with young blood

BillG
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Holmes

Re: The case, Dr Freud, is clear.

I'd like to see The Reg investigate if Intel is also forcing out experienced people in favor of youngsters.

From my experience I think they are.

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BillG
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Devil

Re: The case, Dr Freud, is clear.

@TMWFTE wrote: Pretty much any company enters a death spiral, although the initially trajectory may be subtle, once it is run by MBA's.

Or, to put it another way, beancounters. Once a company starts seeing everything and everyone as an only item in a ledger, sales fall flat because beancounters think marketing and tech support is voodoo magic that just mysteriously takes care of itself.

When experienced (older) people are missing from marketing and tech support, the competition notices and takes advantage of the lack.

Experience, experience, experience makes all the difference.

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UK watchdog finally gets search warrant for Cambridge Analytica's totally not empty offices

BillG
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FAIL

You Can't Delete Data

Facebook, the court was told by barristers Christopher Coltart QC and Philip Coppel QC on behalf of CA, demanded that the slurped data be deleted...

This always pisses me off when I read it. Everyone knows you can't delete data and it is naive to assume otherwise. Any company with such a lack of ethics that they would slurp private data in the first place is going to have a backup hidden somewhere.

The only way to guarantee this doesn't happen again is criminal penalties for upper management. It's the only way.

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US mulls drafting gray-haired hackers during times of crisis

BillG
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Mushroom

What's Important Here

The private sector pays much MUCH more than the military, even as a civilian contractor.

Civilian contractors hire youngsters because they are cheaper than oldsters.

Civilian contractors are laser-focused on lowering overhead (ex: salaries) so they can keep more of the government's contract money - the rule is, if it can't be charged to a contract, don't do it.

An enlisted hacker wearing a soldier's uniform is mostly downside for the reasons stated in the article.

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Gartner's top tip to data crunchers on the eve of GDPR? Don't be creepy

BillG
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Re: Gartners Privacy policies?

"Once you have their data, never give it back."

- Google's first Rule of Acquisition

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Stanford brainiacs say they can predict Reddit raids

BillG
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Meh

@Mark 85 write: This behavior isn't just for kids anymore.

Some people never grow up. They just get taller.

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US watchdog just gave up trying to get Google to explain YouTube's huge financial figures

BillG
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Devil

Re: Its easy enough to explain actually...

"Revenue is recognized as the customer simultaneously receives and consumes the benefits of the services over time. Generally, this results in measuring progress towards the satisfaction of our performance obligations on an output method, based on units of service delivered or days elapsed in a contractual term."

This is deliberately confusing. It's intention is for an SEC auditor to (select one): A) Waste time analyzing it with no result, B) Tell their boss "I don't understand this" (not likely), or C) Give up.

Google's Motto: "Do No Evil!".

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US Supremes take a look at Microsoft's Irish email slurp battle, and yeah, not a great start

BillG
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Holmes

Re: A Minor Quibble

It seems the argument boils down to the difference between evidence's "physical existence" verses "physical access".

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Nunes FBI memo: Yep, it's every bit as terrible as you imagined

BillG
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Megaphone

@Eddy Ilto wrote: Given the Super Bowl is this Sunday, what do you think will dominate the coming news cycle

You don't think politics is a sport? Aren't there people that root for their political party the same way others root for their team?

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Eggheads: Cities, don't woo rich Amazon with sweetheart HQ deals

BillG
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Headmaster

Re: It's the jobs

Well, if the new headquarters are in Dallas or Austin Texas, they won't have to give any tax cuts because taxes are already so damn low here (property taxes and bond issues pay for almost everything).

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Acronis: Ransomware protection! Get yer free ransomware protection!

BillG
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WTF?

Privacy?

Privacy Skeptic Alert: If I read this right, all my data is sent to Acronis's Cloud AI for analysis? And I need to trust Acronis to analyze my data, but not read it?

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Ex-staffer sues UK's DWP, claims superior blabbed confidential medical info

BillG
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Joke

Re: rigorous process

"rigorous process" = "two men named Vito."

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SHL just got real-mode: US lawmakers demand answers on Meltdown, Spectre handling from Intel, Microsoft and pals

BillG
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Megaphone

Re: Cloud Sales Up

In addition to our recent meetings with legislative staff members, we have been discussing with the Committee an in-person briefing, and we look forward to that meeting... and we will bring our checkbooks to support their re-election campaigns."

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Google can't innovate anymore, exiting programmer laments

BillG
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Facepalm

Re: Well...

He explains this by arguing that Google, having become successful, has become focused on protecting its business rather than pushing boundaries. He contends the company is mired in politics and is arrogant.

The first sentence leads to the second, which leads to burning money. See Xerox, Kodak, Motorola Semiconductor, Compaq, etc.

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Hospital injects $60,000 into crims' coffers to cure malware infection

BillG
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Facepalm

Remote Desktop Protocol

This doesn’t appear to be a data heist. The hospital claimed no digital patient records were taken from its computers, just made inaccessible.

Oh, so these were honest criminals?

I'm sorry but a company that is so careless as to allow themselves to be hacked via Remote Desktop Protocol should not be taken at their word.

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Emergency Systems Going Off in Hawaii & Japan - Hacks?

BillG
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Megaphone

Emergency Systems Going Off in Hawaii & Japan - Hacks?

This happened just last year:

Radio hackers set off Dallas emergency sirens at midnight as a prank

So Hawaii's EMS goes off, setting off the horns and sending EMS text alerts scaring people about a "ballistic missile":

"BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL."

Days later, a similar incident in Japan. “North Korea appears to have launched a missile...The government urges people to take shelter inside buildings or underground.”

Here's what bothers me: I've worked with local governments before and language is kept to 6th grade level. I'm skeptical that the word "ballistic" would be used as not everyone knows the definition of that word. Sure, us techies know what it is.

It took a long time - 38 minutes - for Hawaii officials to retract the alert. You'd think if someone hit the wrong switch they'd correct it immediately.

This looks like two hacks to me.

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UK's Just Eat faces probe after woman tweets chat-up texts from 'delivery guy'

BillG
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Devil

Re: I'm failing to see how this is Just Eat's fault

@Loyal Commenter wrote:

Surely, JE are the 'data controller' in this instance. It is therefore their legal duty to ensure the data they have received from you (your phone number in this case) is used only for the purpose you have consented to, and deleted afterwards.

You are forgetting:

"Once you have their data, never give it back".

- Google's First Law of Acquisition

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'Mummy, what's felching?' Tot gets smut served by Android app

BillG
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Thumb Up

Re: And still...

That's why my Android is rooted and has a firewall. For the past three years I rarely, if ever, install a new app. My only approved game is chess.

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Uncle Sam's treatment of Huawei is world-class hypocrisy – consumers will pay the price

BillG
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Holmes

Re: Facesaving indeed

And secondly, defining what is a "Chinese" chip and what is an "American" chip is increasingly difficult.

No, it's not. The owner of the chip is the one responsible for designing the chip's IP and test vectors. Designing a simple digital chip takes months. Designing or even modifying a processor core takes years, developing and running the test vectors alone can take almost a year.

If you designed the chip, then your test vectors will run and pass on those that survive the yield. If they all fail, it's not your chip.

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Leaky credit report biz face massive fines if US senators get their way

BillG
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Mushroom

Re: No chance

Remember this from July 2017?

Democrats (still a thing, apparently) are super unhappy about AT&T's Time-Warner merger ("the party says it stands in opposition to this and other mergers that will reduce competition among cable providers")

Oh, No! A very strongly worded position from the Dems! But a few months and a few $$$ thrown at Dem lobbyists later and there is silence and inaction on the part of the Dems. The Dems investigations into Twitter and Facebook fared the same.

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Amazon coughs up record amount of info to subpoena-happy US government

BillG
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I used to see lots of SQL injection attacks and Wordpress directory attacks coming from AWS.

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Woo-yay, Meltdown CPU fixes are here. Now, Spectre flaws will haunt tech industry for years

BillG
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Mushroom

Was Intel Aware?

Intel is in denial. It insisted the vulnerabilities identified do not reflect flaws in its chips.

Having worked with Intel two years ago on one of their new processors, I can tell you that the company is no longer run by engineers, it's run entirely by lawyers. Engineering, public relations, and marketing are all frustrated by the handcuffs Intel's legal department has placed on them.

Thinking back on my experiences, I'm going to guess - and it's a GUESS - that a select few at Intel knew about Meltdown and SPECTRE as far back as 2015, and has been bracing for this inevitable exposure.

I'm a fan - a HUGE fan - of Intel. Despite that, I'm doubtful Intel is going to survive this. My guess is it's going to weaken them so badly that someone is going to buy them out.

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The healing hands of customer support get an acronym: Do YOU have 'tallah-toe-big'?

BillG
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Boffin

Re: I call it Mechanic Effect

The Mechanic Effect. Ah, yes. As in "that car stops making that noise when I bring it to the shop".

Another is that eerie moment we all like when the car somehow senses the warranty just expired.. and you all know what happens next.

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Meet R2-DILDO: 'Star Wars' sex toys? This is where the fun begins

BillG
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Devil

Re: Calls in to question all sorts of quotes from the films, doesn't it?

"Get in there you big furry oaf. I don't care what you smell"

"You're got something jammed in here real good"

"She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid"

"Control! Control! You must learn control!"

And obviously: "Look at the size of that thing!"

"...don't get cocky!"

"Curse my metal body, I wasn't fast enough!"

"Aren't you a little short for a Storm Trooper?"

"Put that thing away before you get us all killed."

"Luke, at that speed do you think you'll be able to pull out in time?"

" I can see the tower, but I can't see the exhaust port"

"You're all clear, kid. Now let's blow this thing and go home!"

"Possible he came in through the south entrance."

"Hurry up, golden-rod..."

"I must've hit it pretty close to the mark to get her all riled up like that, huh, kid?"

"I thought that hairy beast would be the end of me."

"Size matters not. Judge me by my size, do you?"

"Rise, my friend."

"Open the back door!"

"Hey, point that thing somewhere else!"

"I want you to take her. I mean it, take her!"

"Get clear Wedge, you can't do any more good back there!"

I didn't realize there were so many double-entendres in Star Wars. Disney does the same thing.

Quoted them so I can easily find them for reference.

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When neural nets do carols: 'Santa baby bore sweet Jesus Christ. Fa la la la la la, la la la la'

BillG
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Happy

Re: 12 Days of Regmas

Should read "The 12 Days of Rebma".

(All roads lead to Amber).

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ALPHABET TOTALLY LOSES ITS SCHMIDT: Exec chairman Eric quits

BillG
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Coat

Re: ALPHABET TOTALLY LOSES ITS SCHMIDT

"The Schmidt has hit the fan?"

I'll get my coat...

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BillG
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Mushroom

Usually, when someone steps down like this, there is a major scandal on the horizon.

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Mozilla's creepy Mr Robot stunt in Firefox flops in touching tribute to TV show's 2nd season

BillG
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WTF?

WTF?

What a complete and total lack of common sense.

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Republican tax bill ready to rescue hard-up tech giants, struggling rich

BillG
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Angel

Math

I did the math, using the just the straight tax tables, for the average techie making $100K filing single, taxes drop from the present $21,036.75 to $13,979 annually.

Personally I don't give a damn what the "rich" do with their money. Call me selfish, but I care about MY money and I taking care of MY family.

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Hacks, bribes and bugs: Uber accused of illegal snooping on rivals

BillG
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Angel

And Now For Something Completely Different

I wonder what would have happened if Uber had put all this time, effort, and money into providing a quality service that everyone liked?

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Irony's lost on old Pope Francis: Pontiff decrees fake news a 'serious sin'

BillG
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Megaphone

Re: Hah

Some of these fake news websites are one-man operations, making boatloads of money in advertising. I always wondered if that is strictly legal.

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Italy leans on Amazon to retrieve €100m in unpaid tax

BillG
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Joke

Made Them An Offer

"Nice website you've got there. Shame if something were to happen to it."

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Murdoch's Fox empire is set to become a literal Mickey Mouse outfit

BillG
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Mushroom

The New Star Trek

All I care about is, Disney better not screw with The Orville.

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Hey, we've toned down the 'destroying society' shtick, Facebook insists

BillG
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Mushroom

Re: Sorry, this is just PR Speak.

"The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works. No civil discourse. No cooperation. Misinformation...

Somebody finally gets it - this is totally correct.

As someone who is deep inside psychological marketing, it's easy to see that getting followers, and getting likes, creates dopamine (and PLEASURE) in the brain. This basic science has tons of recent research to back it up.

The way you get followers and likes? Well, the easy way is just telling people what they want to hear.

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