* Posts by DougS

12863 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

NRA gives FCC boss Ajit Pai a gun as reward for killing net neutrality. Yeah, an actual gun

DougS Silver badge

Car deaths vs gun deaths

They are so unequivalent it is laughable. Almost all gun deaths are the result of trying to deliberately kill someone - either yourself or another person/people. I don't know what the accidental discharge or "hit the wrong target" rate of deaths is, but I think we can safely assume it is much less than 10%. Even if you throw out suicides that means over a third of firearms deaths were deliberate.

How many automobile deaths can you say were deliberate, excluding suicide? Surely well under 1%, unless you want to argue that it is murder if you drive 80 mph on ice and kill someone after you inevitably wreck.

The other factor that separates automotive deaths is that if you are in a position to kill others with a car, you are almost always in a position to die as well. The only way that would be true for guns would be if the breech would randomly blow up about 30% of the time you pulled the trigger. How many people would choose a gun to kill someone with those odds? I think there would be a lot more knife crime!

We all hate Word docs and PDFs, but have they ever led you to being hit with 32 indictments?

DougS Silver badge

It isn't worrying

While it is easy to edit documents you send the bank (and you could do the same with paper documents by editing an electronic version and printing it...) the thing that stops you from doing it is that it is considered bank fraud, which is a felony. Probably wire fraud if you send it electronically and they can add some more charges if it crosses state lines, etc.

There are a lot of crimes that are easy to commit but most people don't because of the consequences if they get caught. But desperate times make for desperate men...

Does my boom look big in this? New universe measurements bewilder boffins

DougS Silver badge

Since spacetime itself is expanding

The explanation for it, changes in its rate, and energy making it happen don't necessarily have to be found within our universe at all! Take the oft-cited example of inflation as blowing up a balloon, with our universe represented by the 2D outer surface of the balloon. The cause of the inflation and source of the energy making it happen are outside that "universe".

Maybe the surprisingly high vacuum energy we observe is tension as spacetime is stretched - and if we measure closely enough for long enough we may see that value increase as time passes.

IT peeps, be warned: You'll soon be a museum exhibit

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"modern" rotary phones that send DTMF

I think you're missing the point if you want to use a rotary dial phone built in the 2000s...unless you like stuff built out of cheap plastic that will stop working after a few years.

DougS Silver badge

Rotary dials

You can buy pulse to DTMF converters so you can use old school rotary phones even on your VOIP phones (though why VOIP ATAs can't add support for pulse dialing I don't understand, it would take one guy an afternoon)

I'm kind of thinking about stealing the old green princess phone my parents still have in their basement sometime and get one of those converters just to freak out millennial visitors who would be shocked not only by a "landline" but wondering how you access the contact list :)

Why isn't digital fixing the productivity puzzle?

DougS Silver badge

Re: Well, there's your problem!

But you need the paper pushers (well email pushers these days) in a company with a lot of high tech because coordination becomes a real problem. Granted, many of them are useless but that's true of any job that has a skill threshold: 80% of the people do 40% of the work, 10% of the people do 80% of the work, and 10% of the people do -20% of the work (i.e. they fuck things up and create more work for the rest)

DougS Silver badge

Our missing productivity was shifted to China

"Pay people more and they will work harder" is sort of the corollary of the republican tax cut religion that lower taxes allow people to keep more of what they earn, therefore they will work harder and economic growth makes them pay for themselves.

"Pay people more so they have more money to buy stuff" is the Henry Ford philosophy - he famously gave raises to people working on his Model T assembly line to a then unheard of $5/day, so that they would have enough money to be able to buy Model Ts themselves.

The vast majority of the gains made over the past couple decades in the US have gone to the 1%, putting a lie to the claim that if you give rich people more money, they'll invest it and create jobs and grow the economy. That only works if they invest in the US, or buy things made in the US. If they invest in China or spend money on things made in China, they grow the Chinese economy. Oh hey, there's that missing productivity you were looking for!

Software shortcuts: Pay down your tech debt. It's time to fix a price

DougS Silver badge

Think of this in terms of smartphones

Both iOS and Android are 10 years old now, and a lot of early design choices made due to the limited CPU power, memory, etc. back then are baked into their basic design. Sure, it is possible to leave some of that behind as you drop support for older versions, but some changes are harder than others.

For instance, the way iOS was designed to "know" the display resolution, so that as higher DPI displays were used they did 2x and then 3x scaling of some UI elements. Using PDF or vector graphics for display would make the most sense if you were going from scratch today, as the CPUs/GPUs have sufficient horsepower and displays are high enough resolution that any artifacting would not be visible, but neither was true when it came out in 2007 (let alone when they began the project in 2002) The 1x displays are EOL, as are the 3.5" sizes, but it is still a detail that adds work for app developers today.

Intel's announced PCs packing 5G, and that's just plain wrong

DougS Silver badge

Two mobile data subscriptions instead of one

That's because mobile providers have chosen to do their plans that way. It won't be long before MVNOs compete by offering plans that give you a bucket of X data across as many devices as you want (with perhaps a small per device fee, to handle the per-SIM processing details) Once they do the big ones will eventually be forced to follow.

Perhaps there's still little reason to include an expensive LTE/5G baseband in your laptop when you've already paid for one in your phone though. Especially if patent holders like Qualcomm want to charge as a percentage of the sale price of the device. If I could add on 5G for $20 when I buy the laptop I'd probably do it because you never know when it might come in handy. If it cost me $80 that would be the first option I'd delete (OK, the second after the "free one year subscription to Norton AV")

Batteries are so heavy, said user. If I take it out, will this thing work?

DougS Silver badge

Re: Bullshit.

A guy with the name like ZanzibarRastapopulous sounds like someone who lives as a hermit, working remotely from home, having Amazon and Grubhub deliver his every need, and limiting himself to interacting online with people at site like El Reg where the lower end of the IQ spectrum is thankfully quite underrepresented.

802.11ax Wi-Fi standard isn't ready, Qualcomm bakes chips anyway

DougS Silver badge

None of those features matter

Who the hell needs 10 Gbps to a wireless client, though I suppose that markets well to the sort of people who chose an Android phone with 10 cores over ones with a "mere" four or six.

The headline feature in 802.11ax is OFDMA. Instead of a client transmitting/receiving on an entire 20 MHz channel at a time, they can transmit/receive on an individual subcarrier of which there are now 1024.

It is as if UPS loaded up a truck with what they were delivering to you, made the delivery, then returned to the depot to pick up what they were delivering to your neighbor, and switched to a system where they can load both you and your neighbor's and up to 1022 other people's shipments in the truck for delivery before having to return to the depot.

It will be so efficient that they really should recommend in the spec that 802.11ax default to a single 20 MHz wide channel, and require configuration changes to use more so people don't waste the spectrum around them. All these new 5 GHz routers that try to grab 160 MHz just because have made the 5 GHz spectrum as bad as the 2.4 GHz spectrum in dense areas like apartment buildings.

As HPE trousers soaring profit, new CEO looks at cost-cutting Next plan and thinks: More of that!

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@Steve Davies 3

Hold on, you forgot the lawyers, can't outsource them or they'll sue you!

Fun fact: US Customs slaps eyeglass taxes on optical networking gear

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Dealing with red tape

It'll take years to get that change made, if they can get it done at all.

Why not change the description of the product on the customs forms from "fiber optic" to "fiber"? Or "fiber PHY" or "fiber GBIC" etc. Customs is obviously doing a text search on the forms, so do a search/replace on the 'offending' text!

America's broadband speed map is back! And it doesn't totally suck!

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I learned of a fixed wireless option where I am I didn't know about

Unfortunately the name they used for the company is three years out of date (since a merger) so I wonder at the age of the data they are using. But worse, it gets terrible reviews, so it really isn't an option after all even though it is listed.

Venezuela floats its own oily cryptocurrency to save the world economy

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This will encourage citizens to use dollars

Not like they didn't already have an incentive to, but they can't pay their taxes etc. in dollars, so they had to exchange their dollars into local currency - and usually get screwed in the process. They will probably get a better deal when exchanging dollars for petros, and they would be able to wait until the last minute to do it.

Since petros are an electronic currency they could do the exchange minutes before they do an electronic transfer to pay the tax. The roundabout way black market "unofficial" currencies are exchanged means it can take a bit of time, and having more time with your money in a hyperflating currency is a bad thing!

iPhone X 'slump' is real, whisper supply chain moles

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Re: Samsung needs to find Android buyers?

If they were trying to sell it as an iPhone clone, they would have at least changed the look of the icons to be more iOS like.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Samsung needs to find Android buyers?

Its lower resolution and doesn't say anywhere that it is OLED. But it is funny that despite all the whining from Apple haters at least one Android phone OEM thinks the notch is a great idea...

DougS Silver badge

Re: What hasnt been said...

Thin margins on their flagships? What are you smoking? The S8 cost $301 to make according to IHS, their margins aren't all that different than Apple's and certainly aren't "thin" by anyone's definition!

The reason Samsung's overall smartphone margins aren't nearly where Apple's are is because most of their sales are much lower priced and have much lower margins.

DougS Silver badge

Samsung needs to find Android buyers?

I suppose they could sell them to Chinese companies that want to create iPhone knockoffs, unless they are shipped without the notch... Even if they are the Android OEMs would have to come up with a new design to use that exact sized screen. If true I guess there should be more options for Android OLED phones in about six months, so long as you are OK with a screen with the exact size and resolution of an iPhone X!

Besides, rumor has it Apple is going to offer an identically sized iPhone next fall, alongside a larger OLED model. Couldn't they just stockpile the screens to fulfill Apple's fall order? Unless there will be something different about that screen next fall, I don't see why not.

Ayyy-EYE! Google code 'predicts heart disease' by eyeballing retinas

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Thumb Up

Re: 'The level of accuracy is similar to drawing blood to measure cholesterol levels.'

I read that as "Eat all the bacon you like."

I love that the person who posted this chose the name "Crisp"!

A game to 'vaccinate' people against fake news? Umm... Fake news

DougS Silver badge

Some people don't care if news if fake

Not if it fits their belief system. A right wing friend of mine shared a story on Facebook yesterday that some of the students being interviewed about the Florida school massacre weren't students, but so-called "crisis actors" who travel to various crisis and try to cause trouble.

That has been roundly debunked (an aide to a Florida representative lost his job for trying to get a local news station to put it on their broadcast) but fringe sites are still putting it out there, and people are spreading it anyway.

I posted that it is fake, posted a link to a couple stories showing that. He hadn't taken it down as of this morning, even though he'd replied to comments from others since. He either thinks it is a mainstream media conspiracy to hide the truth, or knows it is false and doesn't give a damn. There's no way to "vaccinate" people like that against fake news.

Talk about a MINER offense! Crypto-cash crafter clashes with T-Mob US in hipster haven

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Re: Your tax dollars at work

If there was no enforcement of interference then TV, radio, cell phones etc. would be useless. Considering how much money the government made selling off the 700 MHz band to cellular carriers, spending a few million on enforcement is chicken feed. They wouldn't have been willing to pay very much if some ham radio operator or guy playing with an SDR could knock out a whole city...

Facebook's big solution to combating election ad fraud: Snail mail

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Re: Election integrity is easy *if* they're willing.

That's an option for the future perhaps, but not really feasible to roll out to a country the size of the US - especially when the federal government doesn't run elections the states do. The feds only set standards, and if they don't give the states money to make it happen it never will - and this would be very expensive. I'm sure the republicans would use that as an excuse not to do it. Because they hate deficits, unless they are created by big tax cuts or huge increases in military spending, in which case they are nothing to worry about.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Delivering a narrative is not done via advertising

Facebook is scamming businesses, they continually reduce the reach of unboosted posts, and make you pay more for the same amount of boosting.

Besides, if you want to reach the under 30 crowd, Facebook is a shitty way to do that. Not sure what is, since there isn't much in the way of advertising on Snapchat and Instagram to my knowledge, but once grandparents started joining Facebook it was doomed as far as getting millennials interested.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Election integrity is easy *if* they're willing.

How are ID checks and thumbprints going to prevent fraud in absentee votes? It isn't, but just like the democrats are resistant to change that makes it harder to vote in person on the day of the election (where they have an advantage over republicans) the republicans are resistant to change that make it harder to vote by absentee ballot since that's where they have an advantage over democrats.

If you were going to cast one fraudulent ballot, which is easier: 1) using someone else's name/address and going to a different poll location, or 2) filling out an absentee ballot request that includes a change of address, and having it delivered to the house down the street that's for sale?

Now which is easier if you wanted to cast a dozen fraudulent votes? You can't do them all in person, the lines are too long, but you could do hundreds of absentee ballots this way in a big city if you were motivated! Get a list of all the houses for sale that list immediate possession (i.e. they aren't occupied) and look up your local assessor's site to find the name of the person who owns it and request an absentee ballot in their name to that address. Some won't be registered but most people who own homes are. You can swing by all the houses at night to pick up the absentee ballot from the mailbox - no one will be checking the box because they've forwarded their mail but absentee ballots in most states are prominently marked DO NOT FORWARD so they will go that address!

Or if you own a second home, you can choose which state you vote in based on where your vote matters (i.e. if you are a New Yorker with a home in Florida, like probably at least a couple million rich New Yorkers, regardless of your politics you will want to claim you are a Florida resident for both tax purposes (no state income tax) and voting purposes (Florida is a swing state, New York is not)

So why are republicans so concerned with fixing in person voting while they don't want to do ANYTHING to address shortcomings in absentee voting? Perhaps you already answered that question with your comment about "opposed by people who cheat the most".

DougS Silver badge

Little of what they did was actually paid for advertising

I don't think anything influences how people vote "to a significant degree". Taking the presidential election as an example: a third of voters are locked in no matter what - they'd vote for Hitler promising gas chambers for kittens and puppies if he had the D or R by his name. Of the third remaining, a third each will vote for the D or R pretty much unless they are Hitler.

It is that remaining third of a third who decide the election, they are the ones you need to sway - the only ones you CAN sway. They are the reason you see all the negative ads, because it is a lot easier to make them vote AGAINST someone (or decide not to show up) than to make them vote FOR someone.

I don't think that Facebook should be worrying about ads, because based on the evidence we have now almost none of what the Russians did was paid for advertising. They had a lot of troll accounts that shared made up stuff dressed up to look like "news" on Facebook and Twitter. Then other trolls would like, share and comment on Facebook, favoring and retweeting on Twitter.

Those troll accounts had long since formed relationships with some US based people (i.e. finding people who had similar viewpoints to the ones they wanted to push and liking/sharing/commenting on their stuff and eventually friending them, and the equivalent on Twitter) so the stuff they were sharing amongst themselves was picked up and re-shared in the US on and on again through real US based friend networks. Those US based people who were unwittingly spreading what the Russian trolls had started weren't interested in fact checking whether Hillary really was going to be dead from cancer within a year of the election, if the story had a slant they liked they helped spread it. Even if some were skeptical that Hillary really was dying and didn't spread the story enough did that it and stories like it took on a life of their own.

Sure, the Russians could have bought advertising on Facebook but instead hired a hundred people who write English well and had them work all day every day doing this. They were able to amplify stories 1000x more per dollar than if they were run as paid for ads. If you wanted to advertise a business honestly you'd probably get more bang for your buck hiring a dozen college students to work a few hours a day posting/sharing/etc. making your product look good and the other product look bad. Imagine if some newcomer to the Android market did this, hyping up their product and slagging on Samsung as overpriced etc. I've heard claims that Samsung has paid people on social media to hype them and that's why they got so big in the US...dunno whether that's true or not but if it is I guess they were ahead of their time.

What I'm really worried about is that campaigns are going to hire social media teams who will basically be like US based troll farms. Campaign laws are backwards looking and concerned with traditional ads like you see on TV or via fliers received in the mail. They don't cover paying people to share false stories about your opponent that someone else wrote, and even if they were fixed so they did they'd simply use the third party soft-money groups to do it for them. Since Trump's administration sure isn't going to lift a finger to stop the Russian trolls they'll be around with us in 2018 and 2020, but they may be drowned out by the US run troll operations. I guess that's a good thing????

KFC: Enemy of waistlines, AI, arteries and logistics software

DougS Silver badge

Re: If you wanted to create chaos

Increasing the limit would decrease congestion and thus reduce chaos.

You think people going 120 in a 30 zone (i.e. middle of town) is going to reduce chaos? You must live in a REALLY small town!

DougS Silver badge

If you wanted to create chaos

Wouldn't it be better to make a speed limit 30 sign look like a speed limit 120 sign, rather than the other way around?

Google reveals Edge bug that Microsoft has had trouble fixing

DougS Silver badge

So Microsoft ought to do the same

Have a team of people poking around Android, and find themselves a really serious remotely-root-you type bug. Release the details after 90 days. Even if Google fixes the bug in time, it won't make it out to any phones in that time except maybe their own brand. Maybe the chaos that would result once bad guys got their hands on it would make Google a bit more willing to work with them on bugs that are harder to deliver fixes for in 90 days...

Microsoft ends notifications for Win-Phone 7.5 and 8.0

DougS Silver badge

Re: I like Apple things

I wasn't particularly impressed by the live tiles, I don't want stuff constantly shifting on the screen or a bunch of haphazard sizes fit together like some weird version of tetris, but the one thing I kind of wished Apple would have stolen from the WP interface was making the icons bigger so there was much less space between them. Having small icons in a field of black always seemed like a waste to me, why not make them bigger and reduce that dead space? Just a small border a couple mm wide would be enough to visually separate them.

Apple has eliminated the bezel from their phones, now why not eliminate the bezel around the icons?

Iiyama reanimates LCD cartel lawsuit corpse, swings it at Samsung

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Oh goody

I can look forward to another $9.36 check or similar, while the lawyers make hundreds of millions!

Opportunity knocked? Rover survives Martian winter, may not survive budget cuts

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Re: 2 years Opportunity = Trump's new gin cabinet

His aides wouldn't let him play golf last weekend because of the optics with the school shooting having taken place not too far away, so instead he spent his weekend watching TV and angry tweeting. That seems to be all he does, he relies on his swamp creatures to do the ruining for him. That's why he thinks he's such a great leader, he doesn't actually do any work he has his underlings do it for him!

DougS Silver badge


The problem with doing that is congress will think "we don't need to fund anything at NASA anymore, we can drop NASA's funding to $0 and rely on crowdfunding for missions like the Mars rover and corporations to go to the Moon and Mars". Then they'll wail and moan when China leaps ahead of the US in space!

The problem with areas of the budget doing basic science like finding out if there was/is water on Mars etc. is that some republicans don't like science in general. Science says bad things like the universe was created via a big bang rather than a god, or that the Earth is getting warmer, so it must be stopped!

Mueller bombshell: 13 Russian 'troll factory' staffers charged with allegedly meddling in US presidential election

DougS Silver badge

Republicans conveniently forget

How the RNC leadership was trying to rally people behind Cruz to block Trump once it became apparent he was actually going to win. What was know publicly was no doubt the tip of the iceberg - as I'm sure we'd find out if Russia had decided to hack and release the RNC emails. Anyone who thinks only the DNC would engage in dirty tricks to have things go there way is hopelessly naive. Politics is politics, no party has a monopoly on corruption.

The RNC wasn't successful because Cruz is hated by everyone, even those in his own party. If it had been "little Marco" or "low energy Jeb" that was within striking distance of Trump they might have been able to change the result and the country (and world) would be far better off for it.

Trump didn't win the nomination because the majority of republicans were behind him, he won because he had about a third of the republican voters as his hardcore supporters and the rest were so fragmented among the other candidates they couldn't stand against him. He would have been easy to beat had they united behind someone else - anyone else - before it was too late.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Wonderful timing!

Trying to swing the Russian election would be pointless. Putin has already has his courts rule his chief rival isn't eligible. I'm sure Trump somehow thinks he can order his attorney general to make that happen to clear the way for him.

DougS Silver badge

I don't think there's any "intention" behind it. This is a wide ranging investigation following a ton of leads in a ton of directions. When there is enough evidence to present an indictment, it is issued unless there are extenuating circumstances (such as not wanting to alert other subjects of investigations to what he knows until later)

He isn't reading tea leaves and deciding when to issue them based on what Trump is doing or the press is saying.

Kentucky gov: Violent video games, not guns, to blame for Florida school massacre

DougS Silver badge

Re: I know what trump is thinking

Whether or not they are being given the guns, a few states are bound to allow it but it won't last long. Even if an armed teacher takes out a school shooter before he can do much damage, and the NRA crows about it, it is inevitable that an armed teacher will eventually kill a bystander attempting to hit a shooter (doesn't matter how much training you give them, unless they've served in a war zone no training can prepare them for the stress of the real thing) Or he'll have his gun stolen and used to kill a student, or worst of all an armed teacher will go on a spree of his own. People go on shooting sprees in their office, this is no different except you'd really make the news as a teacher allowed to carry killing kids - he'd have a couple dozen sitting ducks right in front of him so he could take out a bunch even if there was another armed teacher in the classroom across the hall.

The minute a child dies because a teacher was allowed to carry, even if some optimistic massaging of the numbers shows that many kids were "saved" by another teacher taking out a school shooter before he can kill too many students, it will be the end of the experiment.

DougS Silver badge

Re: I know what trump is thinking

I certainly hope they aren't GIVING the teachers guns. A lot of teachers have to use their personal money to pay for basic supplies because their schools are so underfunded (even in the rich suburb I live in!) so if they start using those meager funds to buy guns I hope one of the teachers snaps and uses them on the politicians who came up with that brilliant idea!

Oi! Verizon leaked my fiancée's nude pix to her ex-coworker, says bloke

DougS Silver badge

What are the odds

That her former coworker just happened to be the one affected by this mysterious cloud problem? Seems FAR more likely that the fiancée sent two men the same nude selfies, and managed to get her way too gullible man to believe "wow, must be some sort of a Verizon issue" and he believed it so fully he's suing.

She better hope that Verizon's attorney doesn't look to deeply. If Verizon logs show MMS of identical sizes sent to both men on/around the same days it will basically prove she was lying - and any man who is upset enough about this to take it to court will almost certainly be upset enough about it to break off the engagement when he learns the truth.

Probably the co-worker showed the pictures to someone who "recognized" her (hopefully her face is in some of these otherwise she has a distinctive tattoo or really gets around) and her man found out.

Apple to devs: Code for the iPhone X or nothing from April onwards

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Re: Suckers...

Apple doesn't reveal anything but Ming Chi Kuo has a very good record at "predicting" Apple's plans in advance. I put "predicting" in quotes because he isn't guessing, he must have some pretty good sources somewhere inside Apple or highly placed in their supply chain.

This is why I keep thinking that if Apple wants to keep things secret they need to go through the motions of building some "fake" iPhones. Make a few prototypes with a fingerprint reader on the back to confound people that get seen, a few others with a light up Apple logo like the Macbook, a few more with a sapphire display, and at a few different size different camera placements etc. to muddy the waters. The cost would be a rounding error in their hourly profit. If nothing else judging by which rumors get reported and comparing who inside Apple or their supply chain saw which fake they could track down the leak.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Reg got it wrong in the headline. Again.

Even without Face ID you still have to have either a notch or a top bezel, unless you drop the front camera, microphone and speaker. A slightly smaller notch is still a notch. Even if/when you are able to drill little holes in the display for the camera etc. you'll still have to treat that area specially since part of the display is going to be obscured.

Former ICE top lawyer raided US govt database to steal aliens' identities

DougS Silver badge

Re: What a stupid idea

He wouldn't prey on them because he'd know he was being watched carefully due to his probationary status, and the disincentive for doing it anyway would be a stint in prison with the aforementioned rapists and murderers.

If one becomes overly concerned with "what if they reoffend" why not give every criminal a life sentence? (nevermind that more than a few have run successful financial scams from inside prison...) And if you're going to hand out life sentences, you may as well hand out death sentences, to be absolutely sure they don't reoffend. That's what Ellen Ripley would do.

UK mobile customers face inflation-busting price hike

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Re: Abuse

Dunno what the pricing is in the UK now, but here in the US I switched to prepay a few years ago and save tons over what I was paying before. In fact I just happened to notice that my $45/month ($40/month with autopay discount) prepay plan from AT&T that used to have 2 GB of data now had 6 GB of data, and just found out they added a $35 ($30 w/autopay) plan with 1 GB of data which is plenty for me since I almost always use wifi. Switched last night so now I'm another $10/month ahead.

If I was willing to go with an MVNO I'm sure I could pay even less but then I'd have to figure out how many minutes/texts I really need and the thought of doing that makes my head hurt.

Chrome adblockalypse will 'accelerate Google-Facebook duopoly'

DougS Silver badge

Of course Google is attacking the publishers

They can't attack the adtech industry like Apple, because they ARE the adtech industry, or at least by far its most dominant player!

Attacking the publishers makes sense for Google, because weaker publishers is good for Google - they depend on content to be out there but want to be the gateway to get to it. Anytime you go directly to a web site via a URL or bookmark instead of search, Google loses money.

Astro-boffinry world rocked to its very core: Shock as Andromeda found to be not much bigger than Milky Way

DougS Silver badge

So what's the escape velocity of the local group, I wonder?

Actually nevermind that, I want to know the escape velocity of the universe. Let me outta this thing!!

Ubuntu wants to slurp PCs' vital statistics – even location – with new desktop installs

DougS Silver badge

Question about the GDPR

Does it apply to products that are offered free, like Ubuntu? If so, how would the EU administer penalties for non-compliance against them if they can't fine them for a portion of their revenue/profit when they have neither (they get donations from crowdfunding I believe, as well as money from the personal fortune of Mark Shuttleworth)

As far as I can tell, they are effectively immune from the provisions of the GDPR if it even applies to them at all.

DougS Silver badge


More like Linux users have a choice because there are multiple distros. You can't decide you want to get Windows from Apple or Samsung if you don't like Microsoft's policies.

Techno-senator tells Tinder to hook up its app with better security

DougS Silver badge

Re: Seems fine to me

He just made a request, he wasn't trying to put forth a bill or anything. So now Tinder pretty much has to do it, or risk looking foolish for getting called out by a politician over a lack of security if it later bit them in the ass!

Oh sh-itcoin! Crypto-dosh swap-shop Coinbase empties punters' bank accounts

DougS Silver badge

Re: Sounds about bloody right

Putting what little you have into something as volatile at bitcoin and risking eviction is just stupid. A bitcoin exchange is not a bank, where you can expect that if you put money in and want it back a a month or two later, it will still be there. Even a mattress is safer for short term money storage! If you put your paychecks into bitcoin a couple months ago and want it back now, you're only getting half. Hope your landlord is OK with paying half the rent, or you can get by without food and gas for a month.

I'm sure they felt smug while it was going up, and like all believers in bubbles they think this is just a blip and bitcoin will shortly resume its rise on the way to 100,000 or 1,000,000, because reasons.

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