* Posts by Andy The Hat

572 posts • joined 21 Oct 2010

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T-Mobile USA sued by parents after their baby dies amid 911 meltdown

Andy The Hat
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You're obviously not as cynical about the US legal system as some of us here ...

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Andy The Hat
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A modern trend

The last time I had anything to do with the emergency services they confirmed the location they had on their screens as that of the incident (the phone may not be the location of the incident). In the case of panic or whatever you then have two possible location data streams. What happened to that most basic of questions?

Perhaps this is simply a case of over-reliance on technology?

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Just so we're all clear on this: Russia hacked the French elections, US Republicans and Dems

Andy The Hat
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Proof of hacking

The challenge:

Prove that Russia can really influence an election - get the Lib Dems a majority in June ...

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DSL inventor's latest science project: terabit speeds over copper

Andy The Hat
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Magic ...

It's all smoke and mirrors I tell you. When I were a lad, you needed waveguide for a 1GHz signal, and then they made computery things that ran at 100MHz and didn't swamp Radio 1 with noise - though I admit it was hard to tell the difference ...

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Comet 67P's oxygen could be a breath of fresh air

Andy The Hat
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Re: Sceptical ...

"UV that breaks H2O up? ok ... but hydrogen gas that "combines" with solids on the surface, you need quite some energy for that and, if you have the energy, you have to keep oxygen away ... "

As I said, there has to be a mechanism which doesn't result in significant quanities of free hydrogen...

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Andy The Hat
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Sceptical ...

If this was the mechanism there would be twice the amount of molecular hydrogen produced. Whilst this wouldn't be as gravitationally bound as the oxygen I would have expected significant detection of it in the 'atmosphere' and especially in the comet's plume but I can find no report of either. There is the possibility of chemical reaction with CO, CN etc to form some of the larger molecules they did find but a plausible mechanism for that reaction cycle would then be needed ...

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Months after it ordered a review into allegations of mismanagement, how's that ICANN accountability drive?

Andy The Hat
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Happy

What's the problem Sir?

Well Doctor, every time I try to speak nothing meaningful comes out. I think it's because of disspain causing issues ...

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Leaked: The UK's secret blueprint with telcos for mass spying on internet, phones – and backdoors

Andy The Hat
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What is a 'communications provider'? The wires of the transport network or the establisher of the communications protocol?

What if banks for instance could be regarded as "communications providers" because they implement 'secure' e2e comms protocols for financial transactions directly between their server and a client over the internet? What about Paypal, Amazon, your doctor or dentist or anyone else initiating something as simple as an https connection? The entire eBusiness system could fall on it's knees as an insecure (backdoored by law) system.

That would be scary.

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UK patent troll protections tweaked – lawyers exempted

Andy The Hat
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Will this new law protect my registered design and trademark if, for instance, someone was using a completely different logo with a completely different trading name but decided, if a consumer was completely blind, then it was similarly fruity to mine and would take me to court ... ?

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China launches aircraft carrier the length of 2.1 brontosaurs

Andy The Hat
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Chinese bikes don't leak oil ...

Chinese bikes don't last long enough to need oil ...

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FTP becoming Forgotten Transfer Protocol as Debian turns it off

Andy The Hat
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Re: All this nostalgia ...

FTP, Kermit, Zmodem? It'll be memories of SCSI cables or VGA next ... I need really to retire on the grounds of having too much old crap in my brain ...

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Kremlin-backed DNC hackers going after French presidential hopeful Macron

Andy The Hat
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Is this a story?

There's no actual credit to this story or source of it's 'news' so I have read it with a full bucket du sale.

Trend Micro are quoted as 'the APT28 crew have also targeted ...' but the article specifically does not state "Tend Micro report that ..." or similar accreditation in relation to the first paragraph.

Is it not possible that this is a "Je suis paniking. J'ai le possibilite de losing to Le Pen <spit!>. Je must get mon media connections substantiale to releaser les stories horrible about les Ruskies nastyeux hacking moi."? (Ludicrous French accent optional!)

Bets on the next story being 'Le Pen was responsible" (available from dodgystories.fr and other good fake news outlets...)?

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Nikon snaps at Dutch, German rivals: You stole our chip etch lens tech!

Andy The Hat
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Is this simply a litigation-fest? Nikon decided it couldn't make enough money from the technology license agreement. So it refuses to renew the license then, when the time is right, they sue the companies that can make a profit from it for far more than the license would have cost ... I would imagine (hope!) if Nikon were found to have refused to even discuss a continuation of a license agreement then the court would take a dim view of a subsequent claim ... that's close to monopolistic interference in the third party's business.

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Samsung's Shixby: Reviewers unimpressed with S8 digital assistant

Andy The Hat
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The number 1 question.

What's the number 1 question asked of a 'voice assistant'?

My guess would be 'Shitephone, how do I turn off the voice assistant?'

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BT's spam blocker IDs accident claims as top nuisance call

Andy The Hat
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How do you block invalid numbers?

I can't understand why spam calls using numbers with a valid STD code but without enough valid digits are routed at all - why aren't they just dropped by the system? If they are foreign numbers there seems to be some numbers that report the international dialing code prefix, others that don't. How can the system route the number 0000000000 - a simple "if calling number valid then route" test would wipe out 50% or more of my spam calls ...

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Payday lender Wonga admits to data breach

Andy The Hat
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Watching for fraudulent activity ...

Are there any corporate instructions from the company on how an average Wonga customer can tell the difference between official Wonga money grabbing and fraudulent activity? My suggestion would be "if you spot a transaction which is not unreasonable then report it immediately as criminal activity, otherwise it's just a law-abiding loan shark obviously not ripping you off ..."

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We know what you're thinking: Where the hell is all the antimatter?

Andy The Hat
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Neutrino and antineutrino

If the neutrino is its own antiparticle, wouldn't this be more easily be detected by studying neutrino/neutrino decay directly?

What we seem to have is the study of a theoretical decay chain which in itself requires a theoretical decay mechanism ... To me that smacks of Nobel Prize or little hope of success ...

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Confidence in £70m customs system has 'collapsed', warns Treasury Committee

Andy The Hat
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Re: Anything new?

Yep, the code base is now 57,000 lines ...

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Europe to push new laws to access encrypted apps data

Andy The Hat
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If apps are intrinsicly insecure ...

then why should I be using an 'internet banking app' or a secure sharedealing service or a bitcoin service, shopping app or GP's online app when they have a known backdoor?

Perhaps my mum, who couldn't spot the difference between "those W W dots" and VHS, has actually got it right ... start opening those High Street bank branches again please, and all is forgiven bring back Woolies.

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Boffins reveal how to pour a perfect glass of wine with no drips. First step, take a diamond...

Andy The Hat
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Re: High Tech

Does that work with over-dunked biscuits too? I just had to sit by my excessively stained tea mug for several seconds before I considered my Jaffa Cake to be drip-free.

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Andy The Hat
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Not a lip!

Can't be a lip as that has been around since the Grecians were Urning. This is a fully patentable 'non drip, diamond-cut groove' which has no relation to a lip or capillary groove of any type ... even those already molded into some plastic bottles which are not designed to purvey Oddbins' best plonk.

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UK.gov confirms it won't be buying V-22 Ospreys for new aircraft carriers

Andy The Hat
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But Sir, as Admiral of the Fleet I can categorically state that I think I believe we are the Navy and we sail ships. Why would we have any need to spend money on noisy, magic, flying machines? Hoist the mainbrace and shiver-me-timbers, pass the '57 port Captain. And where's Roger ... my cabin's in need of a thorough seeing-to?

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GCHQ dismisses Trump wiretap rumours as tosh

Andy The Hat
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Look at the obvious ...

Who would be stupid enough to risk ordering spying on a presidential candidate? Either way the election went, the result of someone crawling to a media outlet would be catastrophic. Whatever you thought of Obahma he was anything but stupid.

Since GCHQ are supposed to be working with the NSA as part of the Indeterminate-Number-of Eyes programme, I reckon GCHQ are as pissed off with Trump as the US security services are, and that's why they declared their position so quickly and strongly.

Quite obviously another Trumpet - a load of air and noise to distract the world from the rest of the crap he's dealing on the world.

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National Insurance tax U-turn: Philip Hammond nixes NIC uptick

Andy The Hat
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What does this mean?

The budget has to be presented at the Chancellor's Budget Speech and accepted by the House, that has to mean that the budget as presented is no longer that as delivered by the Chancellor ... Does there have to be another Chancellor's speech to explaining how the £2bn shortfall is being accounted for or is the material delivered during the Budget Speech totally worthless?

On the subject of worthless, anyone know why, according to the official Budget document, the Petroleum Revenue Tax - charged on oil extracted from pre-1993 oilfields - actually *cost* the Treasury £600m this year and £500m thereon? It's the only tax on the list that doesn't raise revenue ... but where does the money go? Surely it would be economic to not collect it any more and save half a billion quid per year?

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Headphone batteries flame out mid-flight, ignite new Li-Ion fears

Andy The Hat
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Re: Recall?

"Be wary of cheap tat."

... or Boeing ... or Samsung ... or Apple ... or ...

Isn't the problem that it's not 'the Ford Focus' that's the potential issue, it's the fuel that most people are using. There are alternative, safer variants of Li-ion which could be used but they are either a bit more expensive, heavier, lower capacity or support fewer recharge cycles. Surely it's in peoples' interest to cut battery life by 20%, which TBH is generally a convenience factor, to make things safer?

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Andy The Hat
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Recall?

Not the film ...

If cars or tumble driers or fridges had fires as often as lithium batteries there'd be a massive recall ... How come there have been so many issues, recalls of a few whole products but so few attempts to solve the *actual* problem, the Li-ion cell itself being unstable unless it's environment is very tightly controlled? Even under relatively unstable external environments of temperature, pressure or impact a "normal" device would cope but common Li-ion cells are just too unstable for the tasks they are expected to perform - delivering current in warm, humid devices whilst being sat on by a 20st bloke from Basingstoke ...

We had a laptop go up in a classroom full of kids, it's damn scary ...

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BT agrees to legal separation of Openreach

Andy The Hat
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Spin it off ...

Spin it off completely, let the Germans buy it, asset strip then sell it to a Chinese 'investment company' then you'll see what crap really is ...

I'm with the proper Communists ... nationalise the infrastructure.

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ZTE-gads! Chinese giant fined $900m by Uncle Sam for Iran trade deals

Andy The Hat
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"ZTE acknowledges the mistakes it made..."

Deliberate cover-ups, passing equipment via multiple subsidiaries and actively passing materials to more than one banned state ... sound like the only "mistake" ZTE acknowledges is getting caught ...

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Scammers hired hundreds of 'staff' to defraud TalkTalk customers

Andy The Hat
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Easy way to stop this ...

If you get a call from a Talk Talk 'representative' redirect it to the bar steward of a 'representative' from Microsoft and let them have a nice conversation with each other ... At some point I'll probably hire out my mother as a call-divert number as she can talk at anyone for an hour too ...

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Mars orbiter FLOORS IT to avoid hitting MOON

Andy The Hat
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8?

There are 21000 significant objects in Earth orbit - I'll ignore the untrackables - with no roundabouts or traffic lights, and we don't have major problems with satellite collisions. How come under 20 "vehicles" around Mars appears so much more difficult to manage?

There's going to be some obscure orbital mechanics answer isn't there ...?

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User rats out IT team for playing games at work, gets them all fired

Andy The Hat
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That was unexpected ...

Sorry for not being a 'young hip dude' but I mis-read the tag line as "Frak fest" and have just suffered a severe nostalgia trip! :-)

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Two million recordings of families imperiled by cloud-connected toys' crappy MongoDB

Andy The Hat
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What if I was a naughty person?

This would this make a great comms medium for 'gangster' types.

"Yes, I do love teddy bears officer, Bye ..."

"Now Fingers Bear, go check out the doll's house ... and Cuddles can you help please?"

Time passes ... Boss prods bear's paw ...

"I'm stuffed Boss ..."

Cue Starsky and Hutch type music and tyre squealing ...

"No Officer, I don't know where that message came from or what it means. The bears must be on an insecure communications channel discussing toy houses and cuddly toy interiors ..."

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Oh UK. You won't switch mobile providers. And now look at you! £5.8bn you've lost

Andy The Hat
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Re: Reasons to stick

What's a PAC? I've stuck with Tesco through thick and thin ... my Nokia phone and its PAYG top up of about £20 per *year* suits me fine ... I just love the reaction of the 'switching' cold call droids that can save me at least £10 a month ... :-)

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Gulp! Drones dodge spray from California's gaping moist glory hole

Andy The Hat
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conversion let down?

I don't understand 48000 cubic feet blah de blah ... what's that in blue whales or (as noted on the BBC website the other day) bull Giraffes?

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Dead cockroaches make excellent magnets – now what are we supposed to do with this info?

Andy The Hat
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An experiment ...

Something serious comes of a silly story for a change -

take two grapes and a cocktail stick (toothpick for the English impaired) and make a dumbbell. Suspend the dumbbell from its center with a fine thread so it's balanced and there are no twists in the thread. Now put a neodymium magnet near one 'weight' and see what happens. Then try marshmallows, satsumas, dried fruit, blu-tak, play-dough and anything else that's not "magnetic" you can find ... Hours of fun for the kids or anyone geeky in the physics department ...

Safety Warning:- you need a mighty big and potentially dangerous magnet to do this with watermelons but it's fun!

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NORKS fires missile that India reckons it could shoot down in flight

Andy The Hat
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Re: Testing?

"Pretty soon we've run out of intercept missiles and the enemy has only had to launch once."

But in this case, the Norks probably only have one!

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Andy The Hat
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Testing?

As there are several countries with itchy fingers to test their ABM systems in a real-world scenario, wouldn't it be useful for South Korea to allow test firing from their land?

If the Norks put one up, the rest could use it for target practice. If their systems actually work (there's a moot point in itself) it should disuade the Norks who can't argue then it's over international waters as it was 'just a collision between two test fired missiles, oops'. And what will they do about it? Launch a missile against a proven ABM system?

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Trump cybersecurity order morphs into 2,200-plus-word extravaganza

Andy The Hat
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A name for his tweets ...

In future, in line with rapidly established policy, all pertinent (or derogatory) information derived from reports or preachings for the people to worship will be tweeted (in line with all cybersecurity report findings) by His Majesty The President ...

Henceforth Presidential statements shall be known as "Trump's Information Tweets" (TITS). Phrases such as 'Look at that TIT!', 'Oh no, TIT alert!' and 'Have you read what that TIT said?' should all be used liberally.

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Blighty watchdog Ofcom has a butcher's hook, clocks spectrum for 5G

Andy The Hat
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Re: Brexit Imperial Wavelength of 16.89inches

16inches? You're boasting again ... :-)

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Andy The Hat
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It's better

5G *must* be better than 4G because ... it's 5 not 4!

I can't get 4G as there's a blade of grass between me and the mast so 5G will improve my service no end ... won't it?

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Google mistakes the entire NHS for massive cyber-attacking botnet

Andy The Hat
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Please don't call me a donkey.

When did you last look into UK medical training? Perhaps you should.

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Andy The Hat
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Re: re: Unless it's the patients using google translate to understand the foreign staff?

... try Norfolk. Pick a hospital, any hospital.

I'm not being critical of their work (they're generally really good) but both patients and staff must be able to clearly understand each other where mistakes and potential death is involved.

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Andy The Hat
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beat me to it. One wonders why a service sector industry such as the NHS would generate 'abnormal' quantities of traffic ... Unless it's the patients using google translate to understand the foreign staff?

Sorry, bit harsh perhaps, but when I know good kids who are unable to get training as the number of places are so limited they can't get on courses and it's suggested they increase their chances by *paying* to volunteer if does hurt.

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Trump's cartoon comedy approach to running a country: 'One in, two out' rule for regulations

Andy The Hat
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Sweepstake time ...

How long before he stands too close to a grassy knoll?

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Kylie withdraws from Kylie trademark fight, leaving Kylie to profit from… existing?

Andy The Hat
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Sorry

I must apologise but whilst I'm fully aware of a certain antipodean princess, is it just me who has no idea who the rest of this article is talking about?

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Emergency Services Network to be hit by delays, warn MPs

Andy The Hat
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4G?

Some hope ... in the middle of Norfolk I can't even get 3G strong enough for a smart meter to run.

That's two government plans down the pan then ...

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Head of GCHQ Robert Hannigan steps down for 'personal reasons'

Andy The Hat
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Aha! Prime time tv ...

"There will now be an internal competition within government to identify candidates "

I don't think we should discuss who the candidates are by how they'll be selected ...

My suggestions would be a dance-off on BBC TV's new show "Come Spying" or a GCHQ variation on The Cube called "The Roundy Roundy Thing"

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Make America, wait, what again? US Army may need foreign weapons to keep up

Andy The Hat
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Re: Military-industrial 101

"the unibody design common to almost every car since the late 90s came from this"

I could call you on that one then lay down the Trump card of the 1959 Mini ... not only 'unibody' but also a massively successful car with a transverse engine configuration which didn't have tracks, weighed less than 30 tons and, forgetfully, omitted a large turret ... Issigonis will be turning in his grave ...

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Google loses Android friends with Pixel exclusivity

Andy The Hat
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Browser lock-in?

The inference from the final graphic is that Android device producers are financially (if no other way) pressurised into installing Google search and Google chrome by default on devices. As Google/Android is in a position of significant market leverage, how similar is this situation to the 1990's MS Windows/IE lock-in case? Feels to me like Goggle are treading on increasingly thin ice.

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Auto emissions 'cheatware' scandal sparks war of words between Italy, Germany

Andy The Hat
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Re: public evaluation of how well US built cars

In the UK, the annual car tax is based upon CO2 emissions. Big selling point if you can get your emissions down one notch.

... mainly ... and until April when a new system of confusion and convolution results in a leccy Tesla costing a fortune to tax compared to a £30k diesel-guzzler that's smellier than a smelly thing ...

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