* Posts by andy gibson

815 posts • joined 24 May 2007


IBM so very, very sorry after jobs page casually asks hopefuls: Are you white, black... or yellow?

andy gibson

Johnny Mathis

It always amuses me when "When A Child is Born" is played on the radio at Xmas:


What did turbonerds do before the internet? 41 years ago, a load of BBS

andy gibson

Sinclair Spectrum

I remember going online in the 80s with a Sinclair Spectrum and a 1200/75 modem (VTX5000)

Aside from Micronet 800 and Prestel there were a few hobbyists running BBSes on BBC Micros and even a Spectrum +3 with external drive.

Access hours were very limited - usually when the owner had gone to bed. I remember calling one night at 1am, they'd forgot to switch on the kit and the sysop's parents were very irate at getting a call at such an ungodly hour

Hungover this morning? Thought 'beer before wine and you'll be fine'? Boffins prove old adage just isn't true

andy gibson

"wine before beer and you’ll feel queer"

Unless you're reporting on the BBC, the saying is now:

"wine before beer and, oh dear"

(From BBC Breakfast News last week)

Court orders moribund ZX Spectrum reboot firm's directors to stump up £38k legal costs bill

andy gibson

Re: Two words for you ...

The next project was funded a long time ago. Unlike the Vega, backers have no worries about their money or the people involved in it.

Apple hardware priced so high that no one wants to buy it? It's 1983 all over again

andy gibson

Re: Limped after Apple II

"It was sponsored by that guy from Apple Computers"

"What Computers?"


Typical! You wait ages for a fast radio burst from outer space, and suddenly 13 show up

andy gibson


Thanks for the mention of Parkes, The Dish will be my movie choice for tonight.

Dixons Carphone smarting from £440m loss as it writes down goodwill on mobile biz

andy gibson

This is why Dixons isn't great any more. They've moved on, technology isn't fun anymore, just boring and functional, and we just want them to be like they were:


Waiter, what's this? SpaceX delivery delayed for a day by moldy food

andy gibson

Can't see the problem myself. If it is indeed "moldy" they should be in for a treat:


Oh, I wish it could be Black Friday every day-aayyy, when the wallets start jingling but it's still a week till we're paiii-iid

andy gibson


Speak for yourself, I'm paid on the 20th.

Shocker: UK smart meter rollout is crap, late and £500m over budget

andy gibson

pros of the smart meter

Can't speak for anyone else but I've found a couple of occasions they've been useful.

One time I noticed the electric usage was quite high, it turned out to be an outside light left on running a 100w bulb that the previous owner put in.

And more than once I've left the oven on after cooking.

EE, Virgin Media hit with £13.3m fine: Squeezing users for fees for early contract termination not OK

andy gibson

18 month contracts

I had a similar problem, had a "new" 18 month contract due to a change of package (even though I'd been with them for 6 years previously) because they don't seem to do 12 month ones any more - but also had to move to a place where there was no Virgin coverage, I wouldn't mind but it was a new estate so I've no idea why they didn't cable up the place during construction.

Douglas Adams was right, ish... Super-Earth world clocked orbiting 'nearby' Barnard's Star

andy gibson

Frontier Elite 2

Its times like this why I fire up Frontier Elite 2 (now playable in a web browser at https://www.myabandonware.com/game/frontier-elite-ii-22i/play-22i )

My star system information says that its a stable system with 10 bodies, the largest being Barnards Star 3 - 2.14 Earth masses, but with a methane weather system and corrosive atmosphere, surface temperature -149'c.

Don't get THAT personal, says personalised cards firm Moonpig. Dick pics. They mean dick pics

andy gibson

Moonpig are rubbish

I sent them a brilliant animated GIF for a card. Did it get printed animated? Did it bugger.

UK.gov finally adds Galileo and Copernicus to the Brexit divorce bill

andy gibson

£350 million a week

I'll tell you something for nothing, the NHS ain't going to see a penny of that "£350 million a week", it'll all be needed on all the other stuff we'll now have to pay or pay more for.

It may be poor man's Photoshop, but GIMP casts a Long Shadow with latest update

andy gibson

Serif PhotoPlus

A nice compromise for those who struggle with Photoshop, don't like the Gimp and lament the good old days of PSP

Somerset boozer prepares to declare its inn-dependence from UK

andy gibson

Piel Island

IIRC the Ship Inn at Piel Island in Morecambe Bay is similar


ZX Spectrum Vega+ blows a FUSE: It runs open-source emulator

andy gibson

Sir Clive's health

"Why Sir Clive Sinclair’s corporate shareholder in RCL, Sinclair Research Ltd, has not intervened is a source of ongoing confusion"

According to RCL:

"It is no secret that Sir Clive Sinclair has been in poor health for some considerable time. Over this extended period, the current board of Retro Computers Limited have sought to support him at every opportunity in both his professional and private life. Having shared a personal friendship with some of the current board spanning several decades. It is with much sadness that we announce that it has reached a point where Sir Clive no longer looks after his own day to day affairs, and as his advisors have pointed out he has not been "doing much directing lately"."

UK.gov to tech industry: Hands up who can help cut teachers' admin

andy gibson

The tech already exists

Thanks to Edugeek and other groups for powers that be in school, such as deputy heads and business managers who make the decisions, discussion on existing tech to make teachers lives easier is already in place.

The tech already exists - behavioral and classroom progress trackers, & online homework systems, are easier than they've ever been, and seamlessly link with the schools MIS already in place.

We in our respective groups mentioned above, discuss these systems - which ones are fantastic and which ones are rubbish.

The problem is that teachers don't have the time to use these systems.

New Zealand school on naughty step after ransomware failure

andy gibson

"the school has disconnected its network while it works out what to do."

Restore from last night's backup?

Relive your misspent, 8-bit youth on the BBC's reopened Micro archive

andy gibson

BBC Telesoftware


Please tighten your passwords and assume the brace position, says plane-tracking site

andy gibson


A couple of years back, my assistant's OH was off to the US from the UK. It was her first ever trip on a plane and she was scared, and he was a little apprehensive too.

I suggested he put the Flightradar website on his workstation's second screen so he could watch the flight progress through the day.

I can still see the picture of horror on his face when he saw the plane had turned around some way across the Atlantic and was slowly returning to Ireland to land and he had no way of knowing what was up until it landed and she called (faulty air conditioner in the cabin).

Brit drone biz Sensat notches up 29km remote-control flight

andy gibson

hot air balloons

Amazon need to go really old school - hot air balloons with parachutes attached to the parcels. I'd happily drift around the district all day dropping stuff by 'chute.

1,300 customers of Brit bank TSB defrauded due to botched IT migration

andy gibson

It says a lot

If phishers can get your account details and get into your account quicker than you can

Finally, San Francisco cleans up the crap from its streets – yes, all those fscking scooters

andy gibson

Re: 50cc Motorised Bicycles

Electric bikes: licensing, tax and insurance


America's forgotten space station and a mission tinged with urine, we salute you

andy gibson

Atari Space Shuttle

I'm not sure if it was Skylab you rendezvoused with on the game, but it was to me.


Commodore 64 owners rejoice: The 1541 is BACK

andy gibson

emulated microdrive

Already exists:


Sir Clive Sinclair dragged into ZX Spectrum reboot battle

andy gibson

No photos

Despite claims they have models "ready to ship" they refuse to respond to numerous requests for photos of boxes or distribution centres.

And check out the International Shipping bit on their website:


Last attempt to find MH370 starts this week

andy gibson

Excuse the DM Link

But some nice pictures of some things they've found while looking for the MH370:


Windrush immigration papers scandal is a big fat GDPR fail for UK.gov

andy gibson

Re: Glad you've covered this

IIRC the Shane Ridge situation you refer to was quickly resolved the next day.


Car-crash television: 'Excuse me ma'am, do you speak English?' 'Yes I do,' replies AMD's CEO

andy gibson

David Coulthard

Although Steve Jones ruins C4's F1 Coverage, David Coulthard is the undisputed king of grid walks and double enterdres - especially when he's paired up with Mark Webber.

IIRC in 2017 at Monaco he was walking backwards and talking to the camera when he walked into the Crown Prince.

Skip-wrecked! Boat full o' rubbish scuppered in Brit residential street

andy gibson

councillor Don Thomas quoted as saying: "It never ceases to amaze me the lengths some people will go to fly-tip when it would be just as easy to take material to the council recycling centre and dispose of it legally."

I'll tell you why Don, based on my local ones:

1) Tips close before I finish work. At weekends there are massive queues.

2) Surly staff

3) Striking staff

4) Expensive charges if you dare to turn up in anything other than a car.

5) And probably the most obvious one: "A speedboat, we're not f*cking taking that".

Prof Stephen Hawking's ashes will be interred alongside Sir Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin

andy gibson

Re: Throw Data and Riker in there

"Wasn't Einstein also in that scene?"

yep, played by the fella who played Bishop Brennan in Father Ted!

Fancy a viaduct? We have a wrought Victorian iron marvel to sell you

andy gibson

Forgotten Relics

For a great list of other industrial relics around the UK, have a look at this site:


AI racks up insane high scores after finding bug in ancient video game

andy gibson

But when he got the high score

Did he type his name in the high score table as POO or ASS?

Sheer luck helped prevent mid-air drone glider prang in Blighty

andy gibson

time to....

start arming all aircraft? :-)

Virgin Media's Brit biz broadband goes TITSUP: Total Inability To Support Upset People

andy gibson

support line closed

I noticed that the support line was closed due to an "emergency evacuation".

Perhaps that means "Christ the phones are ringing off the hook, lets all go out to the pub".

RIP... almost: Brit high street gadget shack Maplin Electronics

andy gibson

Edinburgh Woolen Mill

Who on earth are their financial advisers to recommend buying such a lame duck?

Crowdfunding small print binned as Retro Computers Ltd loses court refund action

andy gibson

New investment opportunity for people with refunded cash

Send your £105 refund to me and I'll:

Buy a PSP on Ebay for about £20

Softmod and Install a Spectrum emulator on it

Ship it to you first class.

£££££££££££ :-)

Anti-missile missile misses again, US military mum on meaning of mess

andy gibson

Launched from Hawaii?

Considering they've had the crapping of their lives, I'm sure a missile launch is the last thing the residents needed.

Forget cyber crims, it's time to start worrying about GPS jammers – UK.gov report

andy gibson


I'm just glad we don't have to rely on the US GPS system and have a big part in the European Galileo project. Oh.....


New Sky thinking: Media giant makes dish-swerving move on Netflix territory

andy gibson

I miss ASTRA

And the days of when Sky were just a niche UK broadcaster with a few channels on the 1A satellite, alongside channels owned by W H Smith and the RTL channels which got a bit saucy with "Tutti Fruitti" on a Sunday night, and FILMNET with dodgy plug in decoders.

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

andy gibson

Just Eat Don't Care

I've left a bad review of a takeaway in the past and got hassled by the takeaway through text messaging directly to remove it.

Just Eat didn't care one bit.

Same when a local takeaway got 0/5 for hygiene, and they still promoted it.

IT buyer? Had enough of pesky resellers cold calling? You aren't alone

andy gibson

Probrand are the worst

"Hi, just ringing to see if you need anything?" on a weekly basis.

Yeah I've got a massive shopping list here and I was just waiting for you to call.

And that is why you and Softcat don't get a single penny of my IT budget, and my decent sales managers who never ring me will.

Rocky Ross 128 b might harbour aliens – and it's headed right for us

andy gibson

Frontier Elite 2

As I always do in these cases, I dig out FE2 and see how accurate Braben and Bell were with their predictions of planets.

Ross 128 does have two rocky planetoids, one used as a prison colony. Permit Required.

Japan finds long, deep tunnel on the Moon

andy gibson

The future of mankind, back to living in caves.

I thought Trump Vs North Korea would have been the reason.

Moon trumps Mars in new US space policy

andy gibson

Does the Vice President have a micro-penis, that he's trying to compensate for?

Yes, its called Donald.

The new, new Psion is getting near production. Here's what it looks like

andy gibson

Sony Vaio P

The Sony Vaio P was a decent mini machine which could have easily taken the Psion 5's crown.

Asteroid Florence buzzes Earth, brings two moons along for the ride

andy gibson

Re: only ones saved

"Buy guaranteed entry to heaven by sending 1 Bitcoin to ..."

HappyDude, 742 Evergreen Terrace?

Virgin Media customers complain of outages across UK

andy gibson

Kodi users reporting?

I wonder how many people who logged issues were incompetent Kodi users? There's a few FB support pages where users have posted "Kodi doesn't work, my internet must be down" when in reality its just a few streaming sources (usually football) which have been blocked and they've not bothered to check anything else.

Lenovo thought PC salesfolk could sell servers and was wrong by about $500m

andy gibson

tainted brandname

After having my fingers burnt in the past with Lenovo desktops and laptops, I wouldn't go near their servers.


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