* Posts by werdsmith

3071 posts • joined 16 Feb 2011

Pokemon No! Good news: You can now ban the virtual pests, er, pets to stop nerds wandering around your property

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Muppet

"stargatesg7" is, I think, doing a false flag pretending to be a gun nutter. SG7 is the post code for Baldock, Herts.

But what will happen when people protect themselves with guns is escalation. Genuine crazies that want to invade your home know you have a weapon so they come armed and shoot first lest they be shot themselves. So your small arms protection has put you in more danger.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: I don't understand

It's generally not kids playing it. It's adults, all kinds, all ages and often moving around in cars for raid battles that they have arranged on social media in a similar way to how football hooligans meet up to fight (though the Pokemon ones are often bot managed). Raids can spawn up to 9PM, which is well after dark at this time of year at northerly latitudes. Raid meets after dark with several cars and people milling around are sometimes mistaken for dogging events and visited by confused police patrols.

As I understand it, school premises don't get anything on their grounds, but Universities campus are full of stuff. Churches, monuments, blue plaques are also pretty popular.

Find out when there is a community day and visit a park between 10AM and 1PM and you will see that it is mostly an adult pastime.

Well Holby damned! We've caught a virus: Brit medical soap operas team up for 'cyber' episode

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: This is the same show...

Re: This is the same show...

That has an autistic kid fly a drone into a Holby chopper that also crashes on the entrance of the hospital?

Totally fictional, because It'd be hard to do that around here, the wind turbine would kill the drone before it ever got close to the airfield (yet, they have a wind turbine a stones throw from it!).

Yes, the kid that flew a toy drone upwards into a turbine helicopter, miraculously the toy drone was not affected at all by the rotor downwash.

Billionaire Buffett's Berkshire liquidates $2.1bn stake in Oracle – months after buying the shares

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Re: I wait for the day ...

Yes Microsoft have definitely been out-baddied lately. And now the plucky upstart darlings and downtrodden heroes of yesteryear are now becoming the object of hate.

Oracle have always been nasty of course. Parasitic business with negative synergy, holding companies to ransom. I don't dare touch anything so tainted such as Java or or what used to be attractive software such as MySQL or VirtualBox.

Bloke thrown in the cooler for eight years after 3D-printing gun to dodge weapon ban

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: @ Bush Rat ...But Background Checks Don't Work!

Can't even keep 'em within an inch at 100 yards. Still,

So that's the difference between hitting in the nose or an eye then.

werdsmith Silver badge

People say guns don't kill people, people do.

Because people who say this are being deliberately obtuse.

A handgun is designed and manufactured as a tool for the primary purpose of damaging human tissue, and with such energy that it is likely to kill. If people don't have the handgun then killing becomes an up close and personal matter and thus much harder to do.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: It's Texas

But in Texas, if the police hear someone shooting in woodland, don't they just grab a couple of four packs and go over and join in the target practice? Maybe shoot some long haired hippies or something?

Amazon triples profit to $11.2bn, pays ZERO DOLLARS in corp tax – instead we pay it $129m

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Make it attractive to pay tax

It's not Amazon that pays the VAT, it's the customers. In fact it's not the corporates that pay pax, it's the end customers. Because 99% of the population is ordinary people then 98% of revenue is from ordinary people. Therefore the tax is paid by all of us.

So when we use Amazon we get fairly competitive prices, great availability, rapid delivery and swift simple returns without question. All a good service, which we can use because we as customers benefit from Amazon's clever accounting and tax avoidance.

Anyone who is not comfortable with Amazon taking our money to fund space research in the US, should not use them.

Surface Studio 2: The Vulture rakes a talon over Microsoft's latest box of desktop delight

werdsmith Silver badge

an extra £3000 on their laptop is a small outlay if it a)improves productivity even a small amount

Indeed a mere fraction of what will get paid to the recruitment agency

However, I've read the article and I still don't know what this Studio thing is.

Crypto crash leads to inventory pile-up at Nvidia, sales slaughtered

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Re: Gambling on Crypto

It wasn't a problem for me, mortgage-free because of crypto-currencies.

Airbus will shutter its A380 production line from 2021

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Re: Thank you Gareth

"In the meanwhile, it is puzzling that Airbus did not put more effort on its best-selling A320."

They are not ignoring it, the NEO version is the latest development.

Also, the B777 is some 10 years earlier aircraft than A380.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: So long and thanks for all the airmiles

Full row to my self is a real result - especially on an overnight flight US to London.

Put the arm rests up, lay across all the seats with a loose seatbelt round your upper body and knees and the cabin crew leave you to sleep the flight away.

One click and you're out: UK makes it an offence to view terrorist propaganda even once

werdsmith Silver badge

And have you ever considered the advantages of buying this really nice bridge?

Not this one again. McCulloch did indeed consider the advantage and saw opportunity better than most and his purchase (of the facing stones) helped make a success out of Lake Havasu City and it is still doing great today. To use this one to imply someone is gullible is to get oneself up one's own arse.

Mini computer flingers go after a slice of the high street retail Pi

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Grand Arcade?

I think that 4 people in one car it's cheaper to pay to park at Grand Arcade but for 3 or less then the Park and Ride works out cheaper.

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

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Beer and wine don't go together

It’s when you go out and have a meal and a bottle of wine with it. After you,started the evening on beerl, end the meal with an Irish coffee then resume the beer. Finally end the evening with a brandy or a single malt.

This is what I used to do before I noticed the Emperor was naked.

Hey, UK.gov: If you truly spunked £45k on 1,300 Brexit deal print-outs, you're absolute mugs

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: It was outsourced

HM is keeping the family silver in the family then.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: It was outsourced

HM stationey office was privatised in 1996 as TSO (The Stationery Office). It's now owned either by or between Avent International of Boston, Mass and Deutsche Post. I can't work out which, the subsidiary structure is a bit convoluted.

Accused hacker Lauri Love to sue National Crime Agency to retrieve confiscated computing kit

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: He's a prize twat

Asperger Syndrome can often mean that people communicate in ways that are not conventional, but Asperger Syndrome is not idiocy and should not be called a twat.

German competition watchdog tells Facebook to stop combining user data without consent

werdsmith Silver badge

OK, do absolutely nothing then.

I have made a start, got rid of Faecebook. I am working on more.

If enough people did it they would get the message.

But unfortunately there's always an excuse.

werdsmith Silver badge

I worked briefly for a company that did this kind of data mining back over 10 years ago and what they could do then blew my mind. I shudder to think how it has developed since.

Contribute to a better world by closing your Faecebook account.

UK transport's 'ludicrous' robocar code may 'put lives at risk'

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Potholes

"Potholes are a real disaster – the AV can't spot them."


werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Missing the obvious

This, and all your other "top of the head" suggestions are at least 20 years away in real life.

20 years is quite optimistic but would definitely be worthwhile aiming for.

It has been 10 years since HS2 project started and as far as I know not a sod has been cut for it.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Missing the obvious

"The trouble is bad drivers are rarely visible until they have an accident"

Umm, no, just look for the row of four interlinked rings on the front grille.

Trolling in the Reg's forums... we mean, er, 'working' on the train still rubbish thanks to patchy data coverage

werdsmith Silver badge

But the mobile signal coverage is needed in the adjacent fields where the cows have remote monitoring collars on.

Website programming? Pffft, so 2011. Python's main squeeze is now data science, apparently

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Do it. Never look back!

I personally actually swerved Matlab and use Octave. And Wolfram a bit too.

But yes, I'm coming round too Python now after years of resistance. Mainly because of its broad adoption.

werdsmith Silver badge

Our Uni is preparing to abandon MatLab to move to Python and libraries.

I am now trying to use Python as much as possible, I don't actually like it that much because I have so many years invested in C and C++ that I can usually do things much easier they are like a comfortable old jacket and it's the easy route for me to use them. I need to get to the same point with Python to keep up.

Is this a wind-up? Planet Computers boss calls time on ZX Spectrum reboot firm

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Janko

I have a Gemini running Sailfish and I love it, but I've swerved Cosmo.

However, thanks to exchange rate movement the price of backing a Cosmo now in UK£ is cheaper than it was for the early bird backers back in 2018. Depending on what happens in the next 2 months the exchange might push the Cosmo down further and I might be tempted.

Oh cool, the Bluetooth 5.1 specification is out. Nice. *control-F* master-slave... 2,000 results

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: battery state

Must be already there, as a smartwatch remaining charge is visible through its accompanying smartphone app.

I guess the device just sends the information down the bluetooth connection like any other information.

werdsmith Silver badge

Because I've used Bluetooth since it was new and shonky, I still worry about it but lately it just keeps surprising me by being reliable and simple to use. Barely have to even think about it now, it just connects and does its thing.

Another Apple engineer cuffed over alleged self-driving car data theft: FBI swoop on bod as he boards plane to China

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: how much were they getting?

They have caught two, I wonder how many have got away with it.

You got a smart speaker but you're worried about privacy. First off, why'd you buy one? Secondly, check out Project Alias

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: you could simply not put the creepy things in your home

Yeah, I’m not sure that the voice command to turn on the lamp next to you needs to go off to a server probably half way round the world to be processed and then the switch command sent all the way back half way round the world.

I am gadget addict #1 but I don’t want one app f those things anywhere near me.

My new Bluetooth headphones have got one of these services. I won’t be enabling it.

How big is the UK space industry? It hauled in £14.8bn for 2016/2017 – report

werdsmith Silver badge

As a person working in the UK Space Industry I'm pleased to announce that my line management has already been transferred to Germany in anticipation and I am going to be enjoying several hours waiting for short flights once a month for an indefinite time.

Should our UK offices be closed or downscaled then I will be expected to be in Germany or France 10 days out of every month. As a family man I won't be doing that.

iPhone price cuts are coming, teases Apple CEO. *Bring-bring* Hello, Apple UK? It's El Reg. You free to chat?

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Re They are still THE premium smartphone.

Why? it's superior in every way to iOS, which is still very very basic

Put it this way, I don't like Apple very much but if Android was the only OS choice then I would choose no phone.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: The reasons for the iPhone sales slump were threefold

I've re-read your 3 reasons a number of times, and there must be a typo because I just can't see "a lack of innovation leading to Apple flogging the same product for an inflated price" as one of the options

I must be holding it wrong


What we need on The Register comments is some innovation in the jokes. This must be the 5 billionth time this has been repeated. Each time the commenter probably thinks they are being original. The commenter forgot to say that Apple steal tech from other people and pretend they invented it. And use the words "isheep", "sheeple" and "idiot tax" for some extra originality.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Re They are still THE premium smartphone.

A Pixel2 can be picked new up for £450 that beats the latest iPhone XR in every category, a Pixel3 destroys it, and still costs less.

It is indeed a lovely phone hardware wise. Unfortunately it uses Android as its OS therefore it loses.

Also, there's no way I'd pay as much as £450 for a phone even if it didn't have a poundshop OS on it.

Apple: You can't sue us for slowing down your iPhones because you, er, invited us into, uh, your home... we can explain

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Attitude

You get 6 months statutory warranty by law. The 12 months is the goodwill extension from the manufacturer. The 5/6 year thing is for defects that were present at the time of manufacture and the onus is on the buyer to prove it.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Built in obsolescence?

Requires one of their Geniuses to replace it and you need to schedule an appointment where I am. Really?


It takes about 5 minutes or less with a cheap kit from ebay and even I with my poor near vision can do it.

At least up to model 6S. I think the water proof ones are a bit trickier.

And the cheap batteries on Ebay often perform better than the Apple ones.

werdsmith Silver badge

"Yes, in theory it's a useful feature, and my Sony actually has pretty much this, "Stamina mode" (with a variety of levels and the option to leave on or kick in at a configurable level of battery above 15%) and "Ultra stamina mode" (very aggressive, disables internet and most applications, has to be turned on by user)."


Apple has a pop up that appears at 20% and again at 10% offering the option to go into low power mode if the user chooses. That's different than running the phone within the capabilities of a knackered battery.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Interesting argument

Other phone makers use the same battery energy store tech. So how do they deal with the battery performance deteriorating? Do they just go along with the battery discharging steadily to about 60% and then the phone shuts down at the first time the phone requires a higher current surge?

Or do they have another way of reducing or smoothing the load on old batteries?

Apple: Good news, everyone – sales are less bad than we thought. Not amazing but not bad. $84bn is $84bn, tho

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Hmmm ...

"That's one hell of a profit margin. Still don't think you're being taken to the cleaners, fanbois?"

Not really. Small price to pay to avoid Android. I'm not a fanvboy, I don't really like Apple much, but I'm forced to use them because of the dearth of choice in the market.

And I've never paid more than half the new price for one, unlocked no contract.

Is your kid looking at GCSE in computer science? It's exam-only from 2022 – Ofqual

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Copper Oxide and powdered Magnesium

Sodium in water was fun. And as you moved down the periodic table the reactions get less violent and you can create little speedboats. Our lab ceilings at school were covered in the stains of explosions.

They still do the hydrogen production in soap bubbles where they ignite the gas on their hand.

Screaming jellies babies is another popular one.

At age 14 in school we fermented apples to cider and distilled the cider to near pure alcohol and tasted it (and regretted tasting it).

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: "...programming skills assessed only via examination..."

I wasn't the greatest fan of having to do something rather computer-centric, without an actual computer

Indeed. My own technique is to test and experiment as I code and get the computer to tell me if I've got it right before moving on. I've done exams where I've had to write dozens of lines of Java code with a pen, and this after doing UML and pseudo code.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: pffft, does it matter any more?

Easier than out 0x378,1 to toggle bit 0 in MS-DOS on a PC?

Yes far easier. How did you find out you could toggle bit zero in 199?

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: pffft, does it matter any more?

Sure the computers are faster now, but is it easier to learn how to program on them? Stuff like directly addressing the pins on the parallel port, and putting together some electronics stuff that responds to it; that certainly would not be easier now.

On a modern PC or laptop running windows, you are right.

But on a Raspberry Pi or Arduino with the whole web to help you, it’s literally child’s play. Far easier.

Should the super-rich pay 70% tax rate above $10m? Here's Michael Dell's hot take for Davos

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: State tax

But California is full of really smart wealthy people who pay $millions premium prices beachfront properties in a location riddled with tectonic fault lines.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Simple solution to Dell's problem

Yes, George was inspired to write a song about it, you can find it on Revolver.

The Rolling Stones simply left to domicile in France.

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Super rich don't pay salaries either

Super rich don't pay salaries either

Your salary whereever you work is paid by the people who provide the input to the business. That is normally customers or taxpayes. Their cash provides the demand that generates a job.

OK, so the super rich person moves himself and his business to another country. Who is paying the salries of the former staff then?

werdsmith Silver badge

How many health insurance policies in UK contain cover for cancer treatment for example?

I don't know. But as we are talking about the super-rich they can afford to underwrite their own insurance or pay directly for their own treatment.

Whats(goes)App must come down... World in shock as Zuck decides to intertwine Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp

werdsmith Silver badge

Re: Damn

I don't lie about stuff like that.

werdsmith Silver badge

Telegram is a very messy looking app, but powerful.

People say telegram or signal. These two need to talk and codevelop a system to allow cross messaging, then throw that system open to others. That will kill Faecebook messenger, WhatsApp and the other chav apps.

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