* Posts by Alister

3263 posts • joined 19 May 2010

NASA: Bring on the asteroid, so we can chuck a fridge at it

Alister Silver badge

Re: Bah!

The response of the enraged Clangers to this unprovoked attack will be swift, decisive and permanent.

Well... it depends what's in the fridge...

They might regard it as a most welcome food parcel, after years, and years, and years of bloody soup!

Alister Silver badge

Re: 'a non-threatening small asteroid'

Prof. Timothy Fielding: I'm sorry, I'm sorry! Can I put this into some sort of perspective? When I caught Gerald in '68 he was completely wild.

Gerald, the Gorilla: Wild? I was absolutely livid!

Blighty's Department for Culture, Media & Sport gets 'digital' rebrand

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So... how's that digital culture working out then?

And the digital sport? is that any good?

Shock: NASA denies secret child sex slave cannibal colony on Mars

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Important clarification

But this hack will eat his hat if they find any evidence of interplanetary sex slaves having their organs harvested.

I would just like to confirm, Ian, that you do actually own a hat?

Tick-tick... boom: Germany gives social media giants 24 hours to tear down hate speech

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Re: "no one should be above the law"

accept Hillary Clinton

I will never accept Hilary Clinton.

I would probably except her though.

Robots will enable a sustainable grey economy

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a generation who inhabit a world where work is almost never backbreaking drudgery and almost always meaningful

Are all the dustbin men (and women), shelf stackers, cleaners, construction workers, care assistants etc from a different generation? is working in a fast food restaurant a "meaningful" experience?

Alister Silver badge

Re: How can a car-based future be long term sustainable?

Though you still have other options, like living somewhere better-suited to your needs

Ah, so anyone who needs to shop regularly shouldn't live in a rural area, is that what you are saying?

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Re: How can a car-based future be long term sustainable?

but shipping around a 100kg person in a 2000kg car every day just to go to work or to buy stuff is idiotic. That's a problem decent public transport can solve cheaper and better

My nearest bus stop is a mile away. My nearest supermarket is 20 miles away. Even if there were regular buses (and not the two a day during the week that we have now) explain to me how I should do my weekly shopping without a car.

Did you know? Today is International Asteroid Day! Wouldn't it be amazing if one were to...

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Brian Cox, Brian May, Peter Gabriel and Chris Hadfield.

Definitely the potential for an awesome band here, is "The Astroboffins" a good name?

US Senators want Kaspersky shut out of military contracts

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Bring back Joe McCarthy, all is forgiven!

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Unless you are asking a question in French, I think you mean Cue.

Modern Micron maestro Mehrotra marches merrily, maintains megahit masterplan

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Re: My my!

Agreed, an absolutely awesome assemblage of alliterative adjectives.

Virus (cough, cough, Petya) goes postal at FedEx, shares halted

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Am I right in thinking FedEx got hit by the original WannaCry as well?

Hot news! Combustible Galaxy Note 7 to return as 'Galaxy Note FE'

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What could FE stand for?

Perhaps it's built of iron?

HMS Windows XP: Britain's newest warship running Swiss Cheese OS

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I believe so, and it's based on Windows Embedded Standard 2009, which is still supported by Microsoft, and is a lot less susceptible to the attack vectors XP is famed for.

Researchers blind autonomous cars by tricking LIDAR

Alister Silver badge

Re: One day the goverment will update this crap

This was relevant when we were driving Austin Allegros and Morris Minors, it's like those 50 MPH bends on motorways*. It's time they were updated.

55metres at 60mph is the distance calculated to be safe for the broad range of vehicles on the road.

Yes, you could probably reduce it for modern cars with vented disks and low-profile tyres, in perfect mechanical order, but there's still an awful lot of vehicles on the roads which will not be able to stop in that distance, so a safe margin based on an average is better.

I would be prepared to bet that well over 50% of private cars on Britain's roads at this moment have one or more defects which will have a detrimental effect on their stopping distance, whether that be worn tyres, under-inflated tyres, worn or loose suspension bushes, faulty shock-absorbers, worn brake pads, etc, etc.

Very few car owners today do any maintenance on their cars, and most only fix things when they fail the MOT.

Alister Silver badge

Re: Nothing new here...

I love the way "old" technology (in a different form) is always seen as "new" within the automotive sector

So... reinventing the wheel, then?

Google hit with record antitrust fine of €2.4bn by Europe

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Re: Erm

Google doesn't owe anyone anything, it's up to the consumer to make a choice as to whether to use Google's search engine or not.

Indeed for all users of Microsoft Windows, if they use Google it is because they have changed the default search engine available to them, and must therefore be by choice.

Alister Silver badge

The commission has been accused of disproportionately targeting US tech companies. Since 2000, European regulators have investigated Microsoft, Intel, Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon.

Well, as most of the larger internet companies are US based, that's hardly surprising.

Working in maintenance? Stop reading, we need you in the server room

Alister Silver badge

Have one of these --------->

Sounds like you need it...

Alister Silver badge

Could this be that fewer and fewer companies, in any sphere, consider maintenance to be anything other than a cost centre. It seems that corporate culture nowadays is not to carry out maintenance, but simply repair or replace things when they break.

It appears to be impossible to instil the idea that regular maintenance will prolong the life of machinery, computers, roads or railways, and therefore will reduce costs long term.

UK's Ministry of Fun considers what to tell social media firms about online bullying

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Re: Get the popcorn

Same way as here: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/06/27/telegram_warned_by_russian_regulator_roskomnadzor/

Umm, but isn't that a Russian company, being warned by the Russian government?

AFAIK the UK regulator, like the Russian regulator, has no binding power over companies based outside their respective countries.

Tremble in fear, America, as Daesh-bags scrawl cyber-graffiti on .gov webpages no one visits

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Absolutely, and the fact that said wankers destroyed an historic Mosque just proves what devout Muslims they really are.

Games rights-holders tell ZX Spectrum reboot firm: Pay or we pull titles

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“We are not making any comment to The Register”

Did you pick his dummy up for him?

Blighty's first aircraft carrier in six years is set to take to the seas

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Re: May be a silly question

Damn you, earworm alert!

duuum! duh-duh-duh-dum,duh-duh-duh-dum, dum-de-dum-de-dum-de-dum.

Alister Silver badge

Maybe Easton Gibb & Son should have built Rosyth Dockyard below the bridges, as well


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The ship, measuring 39m (128ft) abeam at the waterline, will have just 35cm (14”) clearance either side and 50cm of water clearance between her hull, the riverbed and the surrounding dockyard.

That's a bloody tight parking space, that is, I wonder what they'll do to CPO Vercoe if he scrapes it.

WannaCrypt blamed for speed camera reboot frenzy in Australia

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Yes, but that's your choice, not a requirement. and as CrazyOldCatMan says it would be highly unusual to run Linux on top of a Windows hypervisor on any piece of equipment like a speed camera.

Besides, if you consider how she phrased it, it would seem to suggest she believes that the Windows operating system is an integral part of Linux:

Even the Linox (sic) system still uses a Windows operating system underneath it.

Alister Silver badge


I don't think it was necessarily the spelling mistake that D.A.M was referring to...

Claiming that Linux, (or Linox) runs on top of Windows was probably slightly more indicative of ignorance and confusion...

SpaceX nails two launches and barge landings in one weekend

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Re: "Watched the BulgariaSat launch live,"

I wondered how many Bulgaria's are on board. *

I wondered how many airbags it had... :)

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Thumb Up

Would help if someone could get building the Eagles too

+1 (at least) for that, I always thought the Eagles looked "doable" unlike some other Sci-Fi vehicles.

I wonder if Musk knows about them?

UK parliamentary email compromised after 'sustained and determined cyber attack'

Alister Silver badge

Re: 2FA

I think others have hit the nail on the head with our parliamentarians being too important to be bothered with trivialities such as 2FA.

Well, I don't. If you use an email client, the last thing you want is a text, phone call or other 2FA process every time the client connects to the server.

As far as I know this is not an attack on a web based mail account we are talking about, it is repeated authentication attempts against a server using SMTP, IMAP or other mail protocol. It would be most unusual to have 2FA on that sort of connection.

Alister Silver badge

Re: Passwords must be


To be fair, it's not a dictionary word...


UK and Ecuador working on Assange escape mechanism

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Re: Escape tunnel ...

Apparently there's a tunnel, with an entrance close to the embassy, that runs all the way to Heathrow Airport. Perhaps he could be smuggled down that.

Nope, he could never afford Heathrow Express' fares.

Fasthosts' week to forget: 4-day virtual server summer bummer

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He told The Register the majority of customers had migrated to an alternative platform, and that “multiple desk failures” was the cause.

Ah, the legs fell off?

'No decision' on Raytheon GPS landing system aboard Brit aircraft carriers

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Re: EM noise

And just a further rant, in addition to a lack of carrier based AWACS, the lack of cats and traps also means that you can't use carrier based tankers, so your strike aircraft are limited to relying on land based tankers which are big, cumbersome and a prime target for enemy action.

The highest fuel consumption of a fully armed carrier strike aircraft is the initial take-off and climb to its operational ceiling.

Previously, for both the US and UK navies, normal practice would be to launch your carrier-based tankers (for the US they would be Lockheed S3 Vikings, or latterly FA18 Super Hornets, the Royal Navy used to use Sea Vixens or Buccaneers), then you would launch your strike aircraft, and they would carry out an air-to-air refuelling before setting off for the target.

With the new British carriers, you can't do that, so either the strike aircraft are limited to the range of the fuel they have left after take-off, or they have to rendezvous with a land based tanker, which will normally be (in the UK) an Airbus A330 or A400, which will have to have flown from a land base out to where the carrier is operating.

You do have to wonder if any admirals actually had an input into the decision making process.

Alister Silver badge

Re: EM noise

@I ain't Spartacus

This is why you have AWACS aircraft on your carrier as well...

Strangely enough the admirals do tend to have thought of this basic stuff already...

Except that they can't launch or recover AWACS aircraft from the nice new carriers, strictly helicopters only, (with reduced range and endurance) so maybe the admirals thought of the basics, but MOD decided it didn't matter.

Alister Silver badge

QE is due to make her maiden voyage sometime in the next few months. She is delayed by several months, with both the MoD and the ship’s builders keeping extremely tight-lipped as to why.

They forgot to include engines in the functional spec?

Queen's speech announces laws to protect personal data

Alister Silver badge

Re: Is this a deterrence?

What is the point of increasing the length of custodial sentences for terrorism-related offences when terrorist incidents generally result in the death of the suspects?

Absolutely, they should re-introduce the death penalty for suicide bombers, that'd show 'em!

Tesla's driverless car software chief steps down

Alister Silver badge

Tesla has been riding out recent storms over its driverless car technology quite well.

What Tesla offer is a selection of driver aids which among other things incorporate cruise control, lane-keeping and auto braking, but to call it "driverless" technology is very misleading.

US voter info stored on wide-open cloud box, thanks to bungling Republican contractor

Alister Silver badge

You're a bit behind the times Rich, it was the North Koreans who didn't do it, not the Russians.

Alister Silver badge

Re: Police State

Where is 'here'

The link points at www.cnil.fr so maybe it is France?

Tesla death smash probe: Neither driver nor autopilot saw the truck

Alister Silver badge

Re: Right, $50 of bars will stop a 4000lb car going 74mph.

What about ride height issues, especially in places like the US where trailers have to roll over railroad track bumps where they can get caught?

I'm quite sure that any bumps in US roads are Yuge, compared to in all the European countries where side impact bars are mandatory.

It doesn't seem to be a problem anywhere else.

Tesco Online IT meltdown: Fails to deliver thousands of grocery orders

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Fourth Estate?

Guess who's just locked up £1.5bn Australian prison mega-contract? Our very own Serco

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International Justice Business

Soames said the contract marked an “expansion of our international Justice business

Oh dear Gods, I bet he really believes that as well. "I AM THE LAW"

Virtual reality audiences stare straight ahead 75% of the time

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(when say the kill shot(s) came from elsewhere)

My money's on the grassy knoll...

2 kool 4 komputing: Teens' interest in GCSE course totally bombs

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The number of pupils signing up for GCSE computing has plateaued just years after the qualification was introduced, raising concerns that not enough is being done to help teachers with more difficult courses

Because it's the teachers' fault, not the fact that the course is completely crap, and any pupil looking at their GCSE choices will instantly recognise that.

Report estimates cost of disruption to GPS in UK would be £1bn per day

Alister Silver badge

Re: What a load of crap

Yes, exactly.

Alister Silver badge

Re: What a load of crap

Yep, but for the emergency services it isn't efficient to use local staff based at local stations, it's much better to have centralised stations and increased response times, apparently.

Migrating to Microsoft's cloud: What they won't tell you, what you need to know

Alister Silver badge

Re: Days?

We must be doing something wrong then, we only have two VDSL2 connections which offer real world speeds of 60Mb/s down and 16Mb/s up, (we are 2 miles from the exchange) and then two dedicated 20Mb/s fibre links. We are an SME, so where would we get 100Mb/s uplinks from without going bankrupt?

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