* Posts by Wensleydale Cheese

1384 posts • joined 28 Jan 2011

Virgin Media costs balloon by MEEELLIONS in wake of Brexit

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Another Illustration of the Fact...

"The employees can vote for whoever they like, it's a secret ballot after all."

That raises a very serious question about any future plans to introduce voting by the internet.

Are you happy with the prospect of voting via an ISP who spends serious money on political campaigns?

Conviction by computer: Ministry of Justice wants defendants to plead guilty online

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Ive got a solution...

"If you have an interview that needs a £20 train ticket that you cannot afford, then you need to ask yourself, can I afford the commute to this job?"

But once you have a contract in hand you can get an overdraft for the rail fares. Or an advance on your pay to get as far as your first pay cheque.

Two Sundays wrecked by boss who couldn't use a calendar

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Looking Out for Yourself

"Even if they're not required, it's very good practice to sit down at the end of each day and make notes about how your time was consumed."

At one point I had a diary especially for logging my time at work, and filled it out on the train on the way home each day.

It became an extremely useful record of time spent at client sites.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: 80% the work I do is pointless!

"Greetings. You probably mean 'committees'. You might actually mean comities, but I doubt it. Cheerio!"

comité is French for committee but sounds different

Using French pronunciation rules comitie sounds closer to the English committee

Brexit will happen. The EU GDPR will happen. You can't avoid either

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Just move your business before actual Brexit

"Put it on a truck and just keep it driving around the EU."

Sun had the idea of a data centre in a truck, for disaster recovery purposes.

DEC had the same idea too, but a few years before.

Google's become an obsessive stalker and you can't get a restraining order

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: It will continue for a while longer

"True, but we do have Hoovers, Biros and Transit Vans."

Tarmac: an Australian colleague simply didn't recognise the word.

Dear sysadmin: This is how you stay relevant

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Ummmm

"The truth is that most organisations today are IT organisations"

I'll argue with the "most" there.

For many organisations, IT is simply a tool, much like a PABX switchboard or telex used to be.

In other words, their use of IT does not differentiate them from their competitors in any significant way.

HPE: Come on in, cool cloud kids, we won't compete with you – unlike *cough* Dell

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Leveraging synergies!

"I walk past the convention center on my way to work. Lots of suits out on the plaza, these past few days, proactively leveraging synergies."

It's times like this I dearly wish I was good at drawing cartoons.

Boffins ID bug behind London's Great Plague of 1665

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: I thought this one was fairly clear to be "proper" plague

" Just like the mice spike in Europe this year (I have never seen so many, neither in UK nor Eastern Europe)."

Here in Central Europe I noticed a distinct increase in mice last summer.

And incidentally, disturbed an owl in the middle of the barn at about 8am just last week. I've never seen that before.

Is there paper in the printer? Yes and it's so neatly wrapped!

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Lucky lucky bastards

"Apparently it was a management money saving policy to keep all the photocopiers empty because it they had paper in them people would use them more."

Back in the 1980s I had to spend some time at HQ shortly after the company had been taken over by a very large corporation.

The new owners had instigated a drive to get everything documented. As a result, every single photocopier in the building was running low on toner and the printer ribbons were at the end of their useful life,

Fortunately my girlfriend offered me the use of the printers at her place of work to do some decent looking reports for a large customer.

You should install smart meters even if they're dumb, says flack

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

So simple to fit that your grandmother could do it.

My grandmother's method of fitting anything was to get me to do the job.

I in turn was rewarded by her excellent cooking :-)

Yeah, totally off topic, but good memories ought to be shared.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Massively beneficial ...

"don't tumble dry individual socks"

I have definitely done that, but it was a case of packing enough socks to last 3 weeks working away from home.

"only using the vacuum cleaner between the hours of 2 and 4am"

Having had a neighbour who actually did that, don't be surprised if court orders start landing on your doormat :-(

Florida Man's prized jeep cremated by exploding Samsung Galaxy Note 7

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: ASDA

"In the US ASDA is known as Walmart.... well, actually it's the other way round... Walmart in the UK is called ASDA."

Walmart bought ASDA in 1999, rescuing them from near-bankruptcy.

And scrolling back up to ASDA's Early History, we find that the name came from a contraction of Asquith and Dairies:

In 1965, when the Asquith brothers approached Associated Dairies to run the butchery departments within their small store chain, a merger was proposed. So they joined together with Noel Stockdale, Arthur Stockdale's son, to form a new company, Asquith + Dairies = Asda (capitalised from 1985).

WhatsApp, Apple and a hidden source code F-bomb: THE TRUTH

Wensleydale Cheese
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"Setting DEBUG=true in a config file and asking the user to retrace their steps can be enough to tell you exactly what is going on."

Many years ago I discovered a similar debug mechanism lurking in the code I was given to fix as my first task in a new job.

Whoosh! I managed to identify some bad data on file in less than an hour on a system I'd never seen before.

This can be a seriously productive means of identifying problems.

Self-stocking internet fridge faces a delivery come down

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Burglar Alarm Fix

"Ah, those personal PIN numbers usually associated with automatic ATM machines."

I see what you did there.

Have an upvote.

Apple killed OS X today and binned its $10,000 BlingWatch too

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Mac OS X is dead

"Mac OS X never existed officially."

Untrue.

Have a look at the text on the Snow Leopard Mac Box Set

The Mac prefix was dropped a few major versions ago (Lion or Mountain Lion?).

Apple: Crisis? What innovation crisis? BTW, you like our toothbrush?

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: 1200+ for a ceramic???

'While at it, what is the correct "Ridiculous Headphones" link.'

Here

They look like miniature hair dryers to me.

Hacker takes down CEO wire transfer scammers, sends their Win 10 creds to the cops

Wensleydale Cheese
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No oheques in my country

"5. Accounts Payable then prints the checks, checks under $10,000 are printed with signature."

Well, maybe for high value items (e.g. 10K+), but everything else is done by bank transfer.

There's no reason why similar checks and balances to the ones you describe can't be incorporated into that of course.

BA check-in system checks out: Staff flung back to cruel '90s world of paper

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: How very dare you

"Yep it takes time for the computer engineer from India to get to the UK to try switching the system off and on again..."

Especially if he can't get a flight.

'Hey, Elon? You broke it, you bought it' says owner of SpaceX's satellite cinder

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

Re: Maybe God exists?

"Fuck me, if ever there was a case for divine intervention..."

That'll be an Act of God then.

I don't think insurance pays out for one of those.

'I'm sorry, your lift has had a problem and had to shut down'

Wensleydale Cheese
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FAIL

Windows for Warships: 1998 version starring NT4.0

USS Yorktown: Software glitches leave Navy Smart Ship dead in the water

It had to be towed into port.

L0phtCrack's back! Crack hack app whacks Windows 10 trash hashes

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Yep, vehicle reg works for me too

"I can remember my dad's registration on car he used to have until about 1960"

I can remember that and those of the next two.

Beware someone digitising old family photos and putting them online. Details of more recent vehicles may be lurking in insurance or similar databases.

Got to dash out for some rubber johnnies? Amazon has a button for that

Wensleydale Cheese
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I can see where this is leading

"not only will you have to pay £5.99 to get that packet of three ... but all that lovely data you are giving them about you and your (cough, cough) habits be they good or bad."

1. Fall out with partner

2. Stop ordering your packs of three

3. Get inundated with ads for dating agencies

HPE yawns, stretches, and patches January OpenSSH bug in virtual access products

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Commentard yawns, stretches and fixes typo

lighttpd -> lighthttpd *sigh*

Eh?

lighttpd (pronounced "lighty") is an open-source web server optimized for speed-critical environments while remaining standards-compliant, secure and flexible.

BSODs at scale: We laugh at your puny five storeys, here's our SIX storey #fail

Wensleydale Cheese
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Go

Re: "This copy of Windows is not genuine"

"I wonder if we could sue Microsoft for slander for insinuating that we've installed knock-off copies of Windows when they're perfectly legit."

I wondered about that.

Instead I decided that an OS which randomly disabled itself AND insulted me at the same time wasn't fit for purpose.

It was the straw that broke the camel's back and I started looking at Linux in earnest.

Kindle Paperwhites turn Windows 10 PCs into paperweights: Plugging one in 'triggers a BSOD'

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

Re: I have a Kindle paperwhite and have NOT had any computer problems

"After that it depends on how much updating your distro needs and how fast your connection is. But it's all usable whilst it does this."

As I type a kernel update is installing itself on a couple of my openSuse VMs.

I can happily carry on with stuff I'm doing in them, and when the update is done, it will let me postpone the reboot for as long as I wish.

In other words, even a fundamental update such as one to the kernel doesn't get in the way of work in progress.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Unhappy

Re: Drivers everywhere

"drivers for the case screws "

DON'T GIVE THEM IDEAS!

"This device has been serviced by an unauthorised dealer. You have voided your warranty"

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: all part of their grand plan

Pass the Wensleydale Grommit!

:-)

Wensleydale Cheese
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"Inserting a USB device should NOT require a reboot."

"ahhh, i see. SHOULD NOT as per rfc 2119 i presume? well, it wouldn't be the first rfc implemented by microsoft in a, let's say "creative" manner."

Creatively copied and pasted from Your wget is broken and should DIE, dev tells Microsoft:

"users might already have written scripts using the functionality provided; Microsoft's position is therefore that fixing this needs to go through a community request for comment (RFC) process."

Wensleydale Cheese
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FAIL

That doesn't add up

"They get no money by updating drivers, only by selling new devices. They get no money by updating drivers, only by selling new devices."

Printers are sold cheaply in order to establish a future income from printer ink sales.

That income stream will dry up if the devices stop working.

Excel hell messes up ~20 per cent of genetic science papers

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: An easy fix ...

"It looks to me you never found the CVS importer in Excel which lets you set separators, string delimiters, column types, etc. etc. "

But IIRC* doesn't give you a means to save those carefully input settings, so you get to do them all over again the next time.

It was there in the Extras folder on the Office 97 CD, which meant it wasn't installed by default.

It was not present on any corporate installation of Office that I have come across.

* it's been a long time since I had to use Excel

Wensleydale Cheese
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"Except, of course, any software which starts out attempting to be too clever by half ends up not being clever enough."

I've recently run into series of supplier invoice numbers which start with 118, and the "intelligent" pattern recognition system in OS X tries to interpret them as phone numbers.

In my country, 118 is the number for the Fire Brigade.

Oops.

Das ist empörend: Microsoft slams umlaut for email depth charge

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Punctuation in passwords

"A particular laptop encrypting product assumes you have a USA keyboard,"

Bitlocker does the same on a laptop, desktop, or server

No prizes for guessing how I know that. :-( :-( :-(

No prizes for MS either.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: *You* think _that's_ bad?

"For those lucky enough not to be familiar with those AZERTY aberrations, it is impossible to type accented capitals, or a capital cedilla, amongst other things,

On OS X with a Swiss keyboard, accented capitals are a pièce de gâteau (Miles Kington fans will see what I've done there :-) )

The three accented character keys to the right of P and L on the keyboard are ü, ö, ä when the keyboard layout is set to Swiss-German, and è,é, à, when set to Swiss-French. Apply Shift in normal use to get the "other" set of accented characters.

Add Caps Lock to get the capitals of those: Ü, É, À and È, É, À.

Ç is alt-4, though on this PC keyboard I'm using at the moment I'm at a loss to find out where a lowercase version of that is.

OTOH, the programming symbols [, ], {, } |, \, ~ etc are achieved by using Alt, and that soon becomes a real pain in the neck. I've resolved to give in and get a US keyboard for development work.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Origin of "hassle"?

"( Hmm, dictionary.com says 'hassle' has "unknown origin"? Really? Not 'hässlich' ? )"

According to the OED (the version that comes with OS X):

late 19th cent. (originally dialect in the sense ‘hack or saw at’): of unknown origin, perhaps a blend of haggle and tussle.

DVLA misses out on £400m in tax after scrapping paper discs

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: This should be one of the easiest taxes to collect ...

"One year there was a tax disc that looked very like a Guinness bottle label."

In one of his books David Niven claimed that during a broke period he'd used a Guiness bottle label instead of a tax disc.

Windows 10 Anniversary Update completely borks USB webcams. Yay.

Wensleydale Cheese
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Unhappy

Re: Competence?

"Odd how I misread that as defecato standard format..."

Meet the new shit.

Same as the old shit.

Farewell Patch Tuesday fragmentation: from October, MS will roll just one monthly patch

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

Re: And the bandwidth for this?

"Well, you could always switch off updates, a luxury not available to victims of Windows 10.

My solution, a few months ago :-

mv windows*.vmwarevm /Volumes/Retired-VMs

(it took a while)

Wensleydale Cheese
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Unhappy

And the bandwidth for this?

A double whammy for those on restricted bandwidth

a) everyone gets the patches for other versions

b) last month's patches included

Bees bring down US stealth fighter

Wensleydale Cheese
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Coat

Stealth fighter

Perhaps the bees didn't see it coming

PC pioneer Gary Kildall's unpublished memoir revealed

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: BIOS

"And to Phoenix for having the balls to reverse engineer IBM's BIOS..."

Clean room implementation of the IBM BIOS

Reminder: IE, Edge, Outlook etc still cough up your Windows, VPN credentials to strangers

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: A Web browser is for Web pages

"But what if the web page IS a file share and the file share is ALSO a web page? They're NOT mutually exclusive, you know?"

Exactly.

A lot of products supply documentation as a bunch of html files, and it's extremely convenient to drop them to disk and browse from there, no web server required, and works totally offline.

Windows 10 Anniversary Update: This design needs a dictator

Wensleydale Cheese
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Meh

"One of the things about GUIs was that they liberated us from white (or green or orange) text on black backgrounds. We could finally have easy-on-the-eye black on white."

FWIW the VT100 could do reverse video to produce black on white, though my vague memory of that was that I didn't want to work in that mode for any length of time. It was very good for leaving messages on the console for whoever turned up first thing next day though, they couldn't miss that.

"Now designers seem intent on forcing white (or grey) on black on us"

But it's not just the designers. There are loads of geeks out there who prefer dark themes.

In particular, many seem to think a dark theme is "natural" for coding. To me it looks like a backward step to DOS days. :-(

Is it a Heavy Metal or Goth thing? Enquiring minds wish to know :-)

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: My only wish

5 characters is all anyone should need for a name. - Bill Gates

William Henry "Bill" Gates III

Ooer.

"Willi"

Hello, Barclays? Why hello, John Smith. We meet again

Wensleydale Cheese
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Unhappy

Re: Dangerous gimmick

"what happens if you phone up when you've got a cold?"

It gives us the modern version of "The cheque's in the post"

Now what you get to say is "I can't pay 'cos I've got a cold"

Windows 10 still free, even the Anniversary Update, if you're crass

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: Daft!

"the one I bought was the last one of that model that particular dealer had in stock."

That sounds like a good sales technique.

A dealer with any sense will have access to a pile more of those.

My Microsoft Office 365 woes: Constant crashes, malware macros – and settings from Hell

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

Re: all those dumb "smart quotes."

"Anyway sometimes I'm surprise how decades of limited word processor capabilities led to regarding proper typography as a 'mistake', "

One could blame the typewriter for giving us a century or so of restricted capability before that.

Separate characters for opening and closing quotes might have percolated through to computers - "Hello World" could have been “Hello World” all along :-)

Wensleydale Cheese
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Re: all those dumb "smart quotes."

"Use an editor then, not a WP?"

Ahem. I mentioned code snippets in technical documents.

Yes, copy and paste will work, but I've just upgraded LibreOffice to V5 and it seems to have lost the auto-correct settings I had in V4. I'm probably hitting the same problem that Trevor mentioned.

Wensleydale Cheese
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all those dumb "smart quotes."

Trevor wrote:

I was perfectly happy using Office 2010 that had been beaten about the ears enough to look and feel identical to Office 2003. It was quick, the context menus gave me access to all the commands I wanted, and I managed to get rid of both the spacing after the paragraphs and all those dumb "smart quotes."

It's not just the "smart quotes" but the ellipses, em-dashes et al.

I'm not a frigging novelist, I write code.

I really really really don't want that smart quote nonsense creeping into code snippets when I'm writing a technical document.

Server vendor has special help desk for lying, incompetent sysadmins

Wensleydale Cheese
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Happy

Not easy to ignore then

"I keep the platter on my desk to constantly remind me of the importance of backing up correctly...."

RK05 disks had a diameter of 14 inches (PDF)

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