* Posts by Phil O'Sophical

3481 posts • joined 28 Oct 2011

Brexit to better bumpkin broadband, 4G coverage for farmers – Gove

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: @ Charlie Clark

True, but of most of the people I know who voted Brexit did so because they don't like foreigners,

Maybe you need a better class of acquaintances?!

For the record, I despise a hell of a lot of the EU, like the insistence on two parliaments, the fact that we pay for wastes of space like that scumbag Farage ...

However, we've now thrown away the chance to fix it.

We've spent 25 years trying to fix it and achieved precisely zero. Time to throw it away and start again.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: For most of us, Brexit is about economics

Comedy gold.

Says the anonymous coward who can't actually produce a real fact-based rebuttal.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: @ Charlie Clark

Under WTO rules you will not have a better deal than you do at the moment. It will be worse and everybody will pay more, not less, for goods coming in from Europe.

Do you have a clue about what the WTO is and how it works? It exists to make trade flow freely, and with the lowest tarifs and taxes possible. It isn't there to impose some sort of punitive rates on countries who can't agree, quite the opposite, it's there to ensure that in the absence of agreed rates the defaults are reasonable, often ZERO.

The level of stupidity and delusion from Brexit supporters is amazing...

But it pales before that of the remainers who are so besotted by their EU masters that they have no clue how the world outside the EU works.

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Careful with the 'virtual hugs' says new FreeBSD Code of Conduct

Phil O'Sophical
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You have to put the onus on people not to offend.

No, the responsibility is shared equally. People shouldn't be intentionally and gratuitously offensive, but there's also a responsibility not to be over-sensitive or to look for offence where it wasn't intended, and certainly not to take offence on behalf of someone else.

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Bad news: 43% of login attempts 'malicious' Good news: Er, umm...

Phil O'Sophical
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a new trend of enterprise systems being targeted, not only to steal their data, but to steal their computing resources,

And which can only get worse as "the cloud" becomes more dominant, especially as people lose poorly-secured mobile devices with apps pre-configured with all their login credentials.

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Farts away! Plane makes unscheduled stop after man won't stop guffing

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Reminds me of...

Considering some of the garbage that the Olympics include as "sport", you'd have thought that farting would have been included long ago.

They probably can't work out the right dope tests to catch cheaters. Is there a test for vindaloo?

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US docs show Daimler may have done a Dieselgate – German press claims

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Testing irl

I think that is largely what the independent labs did, and how they found the problems to begin with. Legislating for precise, repeatable, test cycles was always likely to lead to precise cheat coding, far better to leave it to independent labs doing variants on real-world driving, and collating total data.

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PM urged to protect data flows post-Brexit ahead of Munich speech

Phil O'Sophical
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El Reg is not the place I ever thought they'd appear.

Then perhaps you don't understand why people voted for it?

Anyway, coming from an EU 27 country, I can tell you that brexit just doesn't matter as much to us as it does to the UK.

It will, your politicians are already trying to work out how to get you to cough up the money they won't be getting from the UK. The idea that they should adjust their budget to fit their income clearly doesn't appeal to them.

The EU, run by politicians for politicians. The rest of us are just expected to pay the bills and do what we're told.

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Phil O'Sophical
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@Voland's right hand Re: Complex problem

It is disappointing to see how credulous people can be, in believing (and transmitting) the nonsense published in the papers (the Daily Express, of all things), all in the name of protesting about Brexit. It's easy to see why the term "remoaner' was invented.

You, like many people, seem to be confusing what the EU requires with what it makes possible. Take driving licences:

There are mutual recognition agreements between them. This is the exact reason why UK license will NOT be recognized. There is NO mutual recognition agreement. It will be in the "yet to be signed" queue and (surprise, surprise) UK has not signed and ratified the relevant conventions to get an automatic recognition (at least Vienna convention of 1968, probably more).

Wrong. Mutual recognition is defined by international agreements that have much wider scope than the EU. The UK is one of the 74 signatories to the Vienna convention on Road Traffic of 1968, and has both signed and ratified its predecessor, the Geneva convention on Road Traffic 1949. Those conventions define mutual recognition of driving licences worldwide and will not be changed by Brexit.

Private drivers have the workaround of getting an international license so there is a way around it (albeit annoying and painful).

Wrong again. An International Driving Licence (or more correctly Permit) is merely an internationally-recognised translation of your national licence in an agreed format, as proof that you have a valid national licence. It's no "workaround", you still drive on your national licence, under the aforementioned agreements, which apply inside and outside the EU. You can get an IDP by post for £5.50.

The big Bugbear is the insurance. There is a mutual recognition agreement for 3rd party liability insurance in Europe which is beyond Eu. Non-Eu and non-EEA countries like Serbia, Monte Negro, etc participate in it and agree to the same final arbiter. That arbiter is the same as for Open Sky agreement. It is called ECJ. According to stated policy by UK government this is red line.

More FUD. International car insurance in Europe is covered by the Green Card scheme, which has 47 members inside and outside the EU, as you say it is not an EU system. The EU directives simply lay down the rules that EU members must follow in terms of having insurance, making claims etc. For example it makes having insurance mandatory (something that was not always the case, for example it's been mandatory in the UK since 1930, but only since 1958 in France). Here again everything exists without the EU, the EU just says how its members must apply the rules. Post-Brexit it would certainly be possible for, say, France to pass a law saying that UK insurance wasn't valid in France (or vice-versa). That would be a very stupid thing to do given the tourism that would be lost, and again it would need deliberate action. Bexit won't, in itself, change the current situation.

As for the ECJ, you are misrepresenting the situation. The UK's intention is to prevent the ECJ from being able to overrule UK courts on UK matters, the usual example being when a UK court decided to expel a hate-preacher and was prevented from doing so by an ECJ ruling that it would disadvantage his family. There's clearly no change in the ECJ's ability to rule on pan-European issues within its jurisdiction. The UK would still have to respect such judgements, just as it would respect US Supreme Court rulings on US issues, etc.

MOT databases

You're clutching at remoaner straws here. There are EU directives which require each EU member to enact national legislation on roadworthiness, Unless the EU or UK decides to change the rules in a non-compliant way this will remain valid. It won't magically evaporate after Brexit.

Clearly there will need to be agreement on data exchange rules, but that is so fundamental to all trade between EU and non-EU countries that it will obviously continue.

executive summary is - ROYALLY SCREWED

Not even close, but it's up to you. If you want to cower in your little English garden behind your little English fence, planning your next holiday in Skegness because you're scared the big, bad, Brexit wolf won't let you go anywhere else you are entirely free to believe that.

The rest of us will continue our travels around the EU, and the other 80% of the world, as before.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Complex problem

A driving licence issued by the United Kingdom will no longer be recognised by the member states

That's nonsense. EU countries accept driving licences from the US, Australia, etc. without problem. The only time an international driving licence is advised is when the original isn't in a western alphabet. Suggestions that GB or NI licences would be treated any differently is just FUD. Don't be so gullible.

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Helicopter crashes after manoeuvres to 'avoid... DJI Phantom drone'

Phil O'Sophical
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Well, why not. Other aircraft are required to have navigation lights & some are required to have ID transponders.

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Home fibre in the UK sucks so much it doesn't even rank in Euro study

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: False advertising!

@ Phil O'Sophical, You can get fibre LAN card in the computer. But those are expensive (up to $599) and that would require a different modems than are in use today. Normal Ethernet works today at the speed of 1Gbps or more (depending on hardware and cables in use) even if it is a copper connection.

Yes, I'm well aware of that, we have racks of the stuff, Fibre, 10G and 1G, in the server room beside me. It's not something the average home user wants, need, or cares about, though and nor does it change the question. Almost no "Fibre" connection is 100% fibre, so why nitpick on the name as long as you're getting sufficient performance at a suitable price?

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: False advertising!

An inch of fibre followed by half a mile of damp string isn't a Fibre connection!

But where do you draw the line? If the Fibre stops at the modem and has copper/wifi to the PC, is it still "Fibre"? What if the Fibre stops at the pole 10m down the path? 100m? The cabinet 500m away?

Most people really don't care, they just want "fast enough" Internet, and they aren't going to pay more than they need to for clever technology that they don't understand anway.

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Stop calling, stop calling... ICO goes gaga after home improvement biz ignores warnings

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Bigger teeth

ban the current bosses from being directors for the next 10 years.

They'll just start the next one in the name of their wife/boyfriend/dog.

For deliberately ignoring the law they should get fined personally, with jail time for the second offence.

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Who wants dynamic dancing animations and code in their emails? Everyone! says Google

Phil O'Sophical
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Facepalm

requires JavaScript loaded from a content delivery network, which isn't optimal in terms of security.

I would like to nominate this as "understatement of the week".

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Apple's HomePod beams you up into new audio dimensions

Phil O'Sophical
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success of the Echo – “tens of millions” were sold over Christmas,

I wonder how many are actually in use now?

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You can resurrect any deleted GitHub account name. And this is why we have trust issues

Phil O'Sophical
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And yes, if NPM or Nuget falls over, so does our build process. We're also totally dependent on a big cloud service provider for everything. No I don't think this is good, but it's not up to me.

So your build process automatically pulls in unverified and untested code, that anyone could have inserted malware into, and you're OK with that? You are, frankly, a fool.

Oh, and when some personal data escapes and the GDPR guys come around with the €20m fine I think you'll find it is up to you. Your employer will hang you out to dry.

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What did we say about Tesla's self-driving tech? SpaceX Roadster skips Mars, steers to asteroids

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: "rapid, unscheduled disassembly,"

That phrase goes back a long way before SpaceX.

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Austrian privacy chief handed leash to EU's data protection beast

Phil O'Sophical
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If non-EU companies don't respect GDPR then they are likely to face sanctions which could operate at country level. There would then be a strong incentive for the government of any such country to create local legislation to enforce GDPR rules. Might not be exactly the same penalties, and they might not go to the EU, but the end result would have to be much the same, if trade is to continue. That would be true for both brexited-UK, and other non-EU places like USA, China, Japan, etc.

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Ghost in the DCL shell: OpenVMS, touted as ultra reliable, had a local root hole for 30 years

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: When men were real men

Yes. I recall the grey wall.

I recall the Blue one, and then the Orange one :)

I still have an RSX-11M orange shelf in boxes in the attic. And the RL02s.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Source code

I wonder if that was the office where I installed a Vax in late 1980

1980 I was playing with the Vax at Uni, the one in our office was installed 1982-ish, IIRC.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Happy Days!

MAXSYSGRP or something like that as I recall.

Indeed so.

And I think you set that in VMB??

You may well be right. Damn, where did those past 30-odd years go? I do hope the rumours of a hobbyist license for x86 are true, I knew there was a reason not to throw out that old PC.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Happy Days!

Or just halt in SYSBOOT, set the max privileged UID to something large, and continue the boot. Then every user became SYSTEM.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Source code

although copies of the listings can, apparently, be purchased.

You used to get copies of the listing with the systems, on microfiche. I remember many happy days poring through them, since for some never-explained reason our office had a microfiche reader.

What you had to pay for was actual source, on magtape. I vaguely remember that what you got lacked the build environment, but it was many, many microfortnights ago.

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MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Simply stunning

Yes, I'm no fan of his electric cars, but Musk certainly showed that he can pull a great engineering team together.

Brings back happy memories of watching Saturn V Apollo launches as a child (also only on TV, fingers crossed I'll get to see a Falcon Heavy launch in person one day) and that twin landing was superb.

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UK PM Theresa May orders review of online abuse laws in suffrage centenary speech

Phil O'Sophical
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It hasn't come to fighting in the streets yet between hard right and hard left - but the pressures are building.

More likely to burst in Barcelona or Rome, than in London, though.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: The last general election results ...

Remember, some* of the 52% who voted to leave the EU believed the writing on the big red bus. Don't think for a second they can see through propaganda.

*no hard evidence, but it's certain a percentage did

And you can say exactly the same for some of the 48% who have been told that the world will end come March 2019. There's plenty of propaganda to blame both sides for.

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A Hughes failure: Flat Earther rocketeer can't get it up yet again

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: "Curvature" proves nuthin!

Seeing the so-called "Earth Curvature" proves nothing! Very sophomoric to try to use a rocket, manned or not, to "prove" the Earth is not flat.

Yes, one would think that simply going up would not be useful.

He should really fire that thing horizontally, in a perfect straight line (which should, technically, be easier). At some point he will the fly over the edge of the disc, and can then have the satisfaction of sending back images of the elephants as he sails off into space, knowing he was right. Or something.

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Dori-no! PepsiCo boss says biz is planning to sell lady crisps

Phil O'Sophical
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WTF?

Re: Lady crisps

The French have beaten them to it, with a range of pseudo-British products including:

http://www.regentspark.fr/nos-produits/lady-chips-legumes

complemented also by Sir Shortbread, and others (although I'm not sure who would admit to a penchant for Lord Muffin...)

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Long haul flights on a one-aisle plane? Airbus thinks you’re up for it

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: The Golden Age of flying is over

They're entitled to that space - they paid for it.

And isn't the person who paid for a reclining seat entitled to use that? It is why the airline installed them, after all.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: How bad does it have to get?

Presumably at some point travellers look at more than headline ticket price, and begin to shun the worst airlines

It would be nice to think so, but I doubt it. For a European traveller heading long-haul for 1-2 weeks away the extra cost might not add much to the overall holiday, but for Americans who think of vacation in terms of days, a transatlantic flight for $500 instead of $1000 makes a long weekend in London possible. The choice isn't between "bus service" or "limo", it's between vacation or not.

Does anyone have any figures on how much long-haul economy travel is personal, versus business (company-paid)? In the latter case, as I noted before, we often have little choice. I might be able to justify $100 more to avoid three connections or a 3am start, but they won't pay the 50% surcharge even for premium economy, although I may be willing to pay it myself for a holiday flight,

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: The Golden Age of flying is over

Some of us who do long-haul for business don't always have the option to spend a bit more & get more comfort, we're constrained by "lowest logical airfare" rules :(

That said, in cattle-class I really don't see much difference between 3+3 single-aisle, and 3-4-3 twin-aisle. Middle seats are still horrible, the rest are much the same. 2-4-2 is good, if you can get into one of the "twos". Upstairs on an A380 is OK for that reason, but then you have the 500-passenger immigration scrum on arrival.

Legroom &seat comfort are the main issues for me. At most I might look for the loo once during a flight, queues there aren't really a problem except for the poor sods in the aisle seats beside them.

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Knock, knock. Who’s there? Another Amazon Key door-lock hack

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: The best thing that can be said about IoT...

Internet of Thieves?

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Open source turns 20 years old, looks to attract normal people

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Amiga

Freely-distributable software predates even that. Ask any DECUS member from the 1970s.

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Bluetooth 'Panty Buster' 'smart' sex toy fails penetration test

Phil O'Sophical
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Apart from the headline I didn't see any double-entendres in the whole article. I don't know whether to be disappointed, or impressed by your forebearance on a Friday.

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Data-by-audio whizzes Chirp palmed £100k to keep working with EDF

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: How?

So how does that work?

Piezo-electric transducers? No radiated/received EM, which I would guess is the concern.

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So you accidentally told a million people they are going to die: What next? Your essential guide...

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Good compendium of possible actions/inactions/mis-actions.

How long before somone in the Land of the Lawsuit decides to sue Employee 1 for child support on the basis that, facing inbound armageddon, they decided to "go out with a bang", and didn't see any poiint in taking precautions?

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Bring the people 'beautiful' electric car charging points, calls former transport minister

Phil O'Sophical
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The "Boris bike" name was a humourous play on BoJo's first name. Don't we already have convenient public utilities similarly named after John Hayes?

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US Pentagon scrambles after Strava base leaks. Here's a summary of the new rules: 'Secure that s***, Hudson!'

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Yeah, right!

The average user has no clue how to adjust any so-called "privacy" settings

Suitable instructions for most IoT devices can be found here: http://www.willitblend.com/

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Sysadmin crashed computer recording data from active space probe

Phil O'Sophical
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Botanic? In my day it was in the Mews.

True, that was the official name. In engineering we just lumped it it with all the computer science stuff over at the far side of the Botanic gardens. I only remember CC staff actually calling it Mews.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: old lessons well learned

VMS has a utility to modify system parameters. Some changes can take effect immediately, some only after a reboot, and it was sometimes irritating to find that someone had modified something in the "active" set but not saved the changes to disk, so on the next reboot whatever problem had been fixed by the change would reappear.

On one occasion I was making such changes. I dutifully saved them to disk first, then to active, to be sure they wouldn't get lost. Unfortunately I'd mixed up my max & min values, setting the max below the min. The moment I saved to active the system stopped dead, didn't even have time to echo the fatal <CR>. Of course, when it rebooted it found the incorrect values on disk & promptly stopped again.

Fortunately VMS has "conversational boot" to allow changes to be made on the fly during boot...

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Phil O'Sophical
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Also remember the convention (just QUB or any 1900 installation?) for distinguishing O from 0 was different to that everywhere else.

IIRC the Electrical Engineering (Ashby) card punch operators used the opposite convention to the computer centre (Botanic), so you had to know who was going to punch your cards to know when to use O and when to use Ø... Thinking about it, it was possibly 1900-related, since the Ashby had a different setup.

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FYI: Processor bugs are everywhere – just ask Intel and AMD

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: stay on top of firmware updates

point your server's lifecycle controller at it via FTP/SMB. Tell it to update everything and it does, all remotely via the iDRAC.

Been a long time getting to this point but it's sure nice.

Until some miscreant uses this nice simple process to update your firmware and install a backdoor. There are advantages to making invisible software hard to update.

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Google can't innovate anymore, exiting programmer laments

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: My problem with Google

you can turn off features you don't want.

Personally I prefer programs where I can tun on the features I do want. Less hassle and fewer surprises that way.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: OpenStreetMap

They're smart enough to claim their errors are actually protection of copyright,

A trick known as a "Mountweazel".

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Thought experiment

Indeed. The IT world is surprisingly small. How long until Yegge turns up for an interview for his "dream job" ... and finds his ex-Google VP on the interview panel?

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Google slaps mute button on stupid ads that nag you to buy stuff you just looked at

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Nice PR

If you autoplay videos or ads or music or whatever I take my business elsewhere.

I use Firefox with "media.autoplay.enabled=false"

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Electric cars to create new peak hour when they all need a charge

Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Wood Fired Autos

The carbon in a tree has been captured from the atmosphere within the last 20-30 years, so it's a closed cycle that doesn't increase overall CO2 levels. Burning coal is releasing carbon that was trapped millenia ago, it's much less friendly.

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Phil O'Sophical
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All the comments about the grid not having enough capacity and needing massive enlargement are just plain wrong -- the grid (and the generation behind it) has spare capacity almost all the time except at short power peaks, because if it didn't we'd get blackouts and power cuts all the time.

Don't just guess based on "if", do the calculations.

The UK grid has a generating capacity, flat out, of ~ 96GW so with 8760 hours in a year it could manage 840TWh if everything ran flat-out 24/7. Annual consumption is around 360TWh, so about 41% of that.

The energy consumed by road transport is around 270TWh for cars, and an additional 150TWh for road haulage, so 470TWh in total. That'smore than current electricity use, and the total is almost exactly the absolute maximum grid generation capacity.

There's no way the grid can run at 100% capacity 24/7, not least because demand isn't constant, nor is supply from things like solar and wind. Even without car charging the peak load can reach ~65GW. There is not "massive spare capacity".

You're also ignoring the simple practicalities of charging. A tank of petrol or diesel holds a lot of energy. No matter what the battery technology is, putting that much energy into a battery in an acceptable time requires levels of current/voltage that are impractical in a domestic situation, and dangerous to handle without training (much more so than filing a tank with petrol).

Yes, we need a replacement for fossil-fuelled ICE vehicles, but we need one that is more practical than batteries.

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Phil O'Sophical
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Re: Answering a few points in the comments...

No - a charge for newer versions of my car are the same as ours in terms of time. Improvements in efficiency and battery technology are helping loads - you will, of course, pay more.

Electric cars are already pretty efficient, there isn't room for much more gain. As for the batteries, the problem is still the same. No matter how good the technology, to get more range means more energy put into the battery. Of necessity that means charge at the same rate for longer, or a charge at a higher rate, and a higher charge rate is more load on the grid. There's no free lunch.

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