* Posts by Sam Haine

70 posts • joined 20 Jul 2011


Holy crappuccino. There's a latte trouble brewing... Bio-boffins reckon 60%+ of coffee species may be doomed

Sam Haine

London's Gatwick airport suspends all flights after 'multiple' reports of drones

Sam Haine

Re: Airport radar should be able to show this.

They are ground vehicles with ADS-B transponders.


Sam Haine

Re: Airport radar should be able to show this.


They said yes, grins Dell Technologies: Expects to go public this month

Sam Haine
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Thank you Mike D

Good write up here:

Financial Times Dell: the tricky maths of a reverse merger

I shall be shorting the hell out of this.

Baroness Trumpington, former Bletchley Park clerk, dies aged 96

Sam Haine

Re: I knew her when she was a councillor in Cambridge.

"Nothing wrong with having educated people around."

And there's nothing wrong with having a few Tories around either!

Sam Haine

Re: I knew her when she was a councillor in Cambridge.

We seem to have a few Tories on The Register today.

Sam Haine

I knew her when she was a councillor in Cambridge.

She was a bigot and a snob. She viewed people who 'worked on the land' (as she put it) with condescension at best and she preferred by far the land-owning Pembertons.

Windows XP? Pfff! Parts of the Royal Navy are running Win ME

Sam Haine

"With that said, all the IT kit aboard, regardless of age, is there because it works reliably when required"

But how can it work reliably without a load of IT people tinkering with it all the time?

Brace yourself, Britain: Health minister shares 'vision' for NHS 'tech revolution'

Sam Haine

Re: @ "it might succeed..."

"Despite popular myth, the Management are often clever people too"

NPfIT didn't fail because of doctors, Anonymous NHS manager.

Sam Haine

Re: Patient records for “health and care setting” will use UK residents' NHS numbers

It would make more sense to deprecate the use of NHS numbers as unique patient identifiers and replace them with National Insurance numbers as unique patient identifiers.

There may be a very small number of permanent migrants to the UK who do not have NI numbers (such as dependents of another person who do not pay tax or claim benefits) and it may be that new immigrants to the UK should be advised to apply for an NI number as soon as possible.

Children would be treated in the same manner as adults. Children have NI numbers which are created when their birth is registered but at present the Department of Work and Pensions does not routinely issue them until 15 years and 9 months of age. However there is no reason why their NI numbers cannot be issued earlier if there is a use for them.

Sam Haine

Re: I'm all for grassroots...

In healthcare so-called systems experts often dislike doctors because if the systems analysis is BS then doctors are often articulate enough to point this out. Don't worry though Professor Fox, the systems experts always get paid.

UK Home Office sheds 70 staff on delayed 4G upgrade to Emergency Services Network

Sam Haine

Re: Will that include...

It's got a new nickname now!

No more slurping of kids' nationalities, Brit schools told

Sam Haine

Conflating refugees and economic migrants

You're conflating refugees and economic migrants. Refugees are here for humanitarian reasons, economic migrants are here for financial reasons and there are far more of the latter than the former in British schools.

Sam Haine
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Re: Fair enough, but as a matter of balance

We should charge non-British citizens for use of state education, with an exception for asylum seekers. At present entitlement to state education for economic migrants is based solely on residency and not on whether they are net contributors to the Exchequer.

I await cries of racism from those in the public sector who use ever increasing demands on public services as justification for their jobs.

Korean cryptocoin exchange $30m lighter after hacking attack

Sam Haine

Shorting Bitcoin

Shorting Bitcoin is easy. I do it on IG Index.

Apple and The Notched One: It can't hide the X-sized iPhone let-down

Sam Haine

Re: Grew revenue...

The Fake Steve Jobs blog used often to portray Jobs making fun of people less financially successful than him telling him how to run Apple.

Brexit in spaaaace! At T-1 year and counting: UK politicos ponder impact

Sam Haine

Brexit is the end of UK science as we know it

There's some well-informed discussion here.

US authorities call on cryptocoin 'exchanges' to sign up for regulation

Sam Haine

Blockchain news

"The Reg hears near-constant news of its adoption for serious work by reputable companies."

Now that would be interesting.

Hacker Noon: Ten years in, nobody has come up with a use for blockchain

Bitcoin price soars amid technical troubles for exchanges

Sam Haine

Re: Can I buy Tulips with Bitcoin?

The impressive thing about Bitcoin is that it's both a Ponzi and a pyramid scheme.

Apple sprays down bug-ridden iOS 11 with more fixes

Sam Haine

Does Tim need to spend a bit less on share buybacks and a bit more on software testing?

Loose-change payment network Microraiden launches on Ethereum

Sam Haine

Why not Visa or Mastercard?

Is there anything about Microraiden that could not be done orders of magnitude better by Visa or Mastercard if either of them were to choose to process payments in cryptocurrencies?

Inmarsat aircraft Wi-Fi lift off set to fill coffers

Sam Haine

Dividend cover 0.98

INMARSAT pays out slightly more in dividends per share than it makes in earnings after tax etc per share. Slowly but surely management are hollowing the company out to pay the dividend, which is why the share price fell after these interim results were released.

NHS: Remember those patient records we didn't deliver? Well, we found another 162,000

Sam Haine


I noticed she ommited to wipe the injection area with alcohol beforehand, presumably slightly increasing my chances of an infection, but I didn't say anything.

It used to be thought that was the case, but now it turns out that as long as the skin is visibly clean, disinfecting it doesn't make any difference for blood taking.

Ubuntu 'weaponised' to cure NHS of its addiction to Microsoft Windows

Sam Haine

NHSbuntu and users with disabilities?

How usable will NHSbuntu be for users who are visually impaired, hearing impaired or have limited use of their hands?

Cabinet Office losing grip on UK government departments – report

Sam Haine
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Good news!

A genuinely interesting bit of news on El Reg that wasn't widely reportedly elsewhere. Keep it up!

Healthcare dev fined $155m for lying about compliance

Sam Haine

It could never happen here!

Fortunately, all electronic health records software used by the NHS is Data Protection Act compliant. We know this because... well, actually we didn't ask but it must be, right?

Do we need Windows patch legislation?

Sam Haine

"Licensed" or "sold"

The fact that software is licensed rather than sold allows software manufacturers to get away with a great deal.

I can't think of any product which can be sold, be found to be flawed in a way that makes it unfit for the purpose for which it was sold and the vendor of which can't be compelled to repair, replace or offer a refund. However, because software is licensed the Consumer Rights Act 2015 and Sale of Goods Act 1979 don't apply.

The NHS has lawyers; I'd like to see them test this against Microsoft in court.

Shadow Brokers resurface, offer to sell fresh 'wine of month' club exploits

Sam Haine

Re: Language analysis

Well, the meerkats in the adverts are White Russians so you might not be far off.

74 countries hit by NSA-powered WannaCrypt ransomware backdoor: Emergency fixes emitted by Microsoft for WinXP+

Sam Haine

Re: Political SNAFU

"the government ... should have put laws in place to ensure that all nationally important IT systems are fit for purpose..."

It's broadly covered by the Civil Contingencies Act 2004.

UK hospital meltdown after ransomware worm uses NSA vuln to raid IT

Sam Haine

Security vs convenience

The security versus convenience compromise is usually wrong in the NHS because messages from doctors, nurses, pharmacists etc on the front line are ignored by those who make the implementation decisions.

I worked in one large hospital where management decided to tighten up security and have a whitelist of accessible websites. Unfortunately they didn't include the British National Formulary, TOXBASE etc with predictably hairy results. When they eventually responded to this they overreacted and scrapped far too many security measures with predictably hairy results in the other direction.

Google mistakes the entire NHS for massive cyber-attacking botnet

Sam Haine

"how to perform open heart surgery"


'Mafia' of ageing scientists, academics and politicos suck at picking tech 'winners'

Sam Haine

Why the Industrial Revolution happened here

Perhaps Theresa May should watch this:


Very little state intervention involved.

Sam Haine

Manchester is dying

I like Manchester, but the harsh truth is that it never found a replacement for its original reason for becoming a city, textiles, and it is slowly dying. Public sector employment will keep it going for a bit longer but there's nothing on the horizon to reverse the decline.

British military laser death ray cannon contract still awarded, MoD confirms

Sam Haine

Re: Why do taxpayers have to fund this?

Lewis Page did make the point that ship-to-ship warfare is an obsolescent concept.

90 per cent of the UK's NHS is STILL relying on Windows XP

Sam Haine

Start asking the right questions (was: just a marketing ploy)

How much an NHS Trust spends on permanent IT staff salaries (broken down by job title) and how much it spends on contractors would be a good start.

NHS IT bod sends test email to 850k users – and then responses are sent 'reply all'

Sam Haine

This is NHS IT. Nothing will happen at all.

Hypernormalisation: Adam Curtis on chatbots, AI and Colonel Gaddafi

Sam Haine

Re: Adam Curtis summary

"Adam Curtis believed that 200,000 Guardian readers watching BBC 2 could change the world."

Don't let banks fool you, the blockchain really does have other uses

Sam Haine

Re: block chain for property sales

Good point. The relevant information needed to by a property is not going to be centralised anytime soon.

'Alien megastructure' Tabby's Star: Light is definitely dimming

Sam Haine

If you could actually build a Dyson sphere...

...you'd build an Eye of Harmony instead.

Shocker: Computer science graduate wins a top UK political job

Sam Haine

Re: "But admirably his was one of the few voices raised against 90-day detention "

He's also offered well-reasoned arguments for more effective oversight of the security services.

Medicos could be world's best security bypassers, study finds

Sam Haine

Re: So a dilemma.

"Server down today, try again tomorrow."

"How do you fix a dead server by sharing passwords?"

By trying a different server to which I don't have access because I'm not supposed to need access. I can request a password for that server of course (with the request countersigned by my line manager and my line manager's line manager) which will almost certainly be rejected by someone who won't read / won't believe the reason I give for needing it and with the usual response time of twenty working days.

Sam Haine

Re: So a dilemma.

"For routine medicine you can always wait a couple of seconds, and in most emergency cases you *treat what you see in front of you* not what some computer says."

"A couple of seconds"? More like "Server down today, try again tomorrow." Need to look at an X-ray or some blood tests? Better just "treat what you see in front of you." Do most of the IT boondoggles I deal with increase the risk of death? Probably not. Increased risk of serious harm through delays in correct treatment, plus more pain and distress for the patient? Oh yes.

London Stock Exchange's German mega-merger: It's a go, despite Brexit

Sam Haine

Re: Brilliant read

Indeed. More informative articles like this by Dominic Connor please!

Brexit government pledge sought to keep EU-backed UK science alive

Sam Haine

Re: End to political interference and paperwork

"Anyone who has applied for EU money in science will know that there is a massive political agenda to what they support. E.g.

Requirements for partnership with weak EU based institutions.

Bans on working in certain areas,

Bans on working with certain non-EU institutions even when they are world leaders.

The gross cost of applying often greater than the grant when all the failed bids are added together

The delays are so long that the bid ceases to be relevant

The paperwork for compliance is often a significant part of the projects costs

They don't even pay on time!"

But could those issues be fixed if we had a bespoke agreement (pdf) as the Swiss do? I use the Swiss as an example of the principle of such an agreement, not necessarily the detail.

'Bitcoin creator' Craig Yeah Wright in meltdown

Sam Haine

Re: Odd

"so what was his motivation?"

The adulation of Rory Cellan-Jones?

ICO fines NHS trust £185K for publicly airing personnel files

Sam Haine

Re: Im sorry

"Because when you fire somebody, you get a new somebody who'll just go and make the same stupid mistake again. The real answer is to remove a non-typing finger (you know the one!!) and turn the debacle into a learning opportunity."

Docking a percentage of the pay of all the individuals responsible (all the way up the corporate heirarchy) would help to concentrate the minds of those who need to learn and save the NHS money. Win/win!

Hospital servers in crosshairs of new ransomware strain

Sam Haine

US or UK phenomenon?

Is this a UK or just a US phenomenon? The press release, sorry, story doesn't make it clear.

Intravenous hangover clinics don't work, could land you in hospital

Sam Haine

Re: Not quite

Good reference. This is why people who are not chronic alcoholics are dehydrated after drinking alcohol because of reduced retention of water and an osmotic diuresis, whereas chronic alcoholics are not dehydrated but have low sodium because of increased retention of water, decreased sodium intake and increased sodium excretion in urine (in an attempt to increase water excretion to counteract the increased water retention because water follows sodium along the osmotic gradient between blood and urine across cell membranes in the kidney).

Thin-lipped chancellor tight-lipped on contractor-nudge-onto-payroll plan

Sam Haine

El Reg, if there are any changes to IR35 then could you get Dominic Connor's take on it please? His articles on employment practices are always informative.

How long does it take an NHS doctor to turn on a computer?

Sam Haine

Gosh Dan, you're so smart.

A PACS monitor is quite a bit more substantial than a normal LCD monitor and so not that difficult to confuse with an all-in-one unit.

The doctor gave you the asset number of the monitor, so why did it take you so long to identify it as such?

Since you wasted 90 minutes while a patient that needed an X-Ray looking at waited, I'm sure you're smart enough to figure out why the doctor didn't say thank you.


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