* Posts by Brenda McViking

283 posts • joined 28 May 2012

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Aviation regulator flies in face of UK.gov ban, says electronics should be stowed in cabin. Duh

Brenda McViking
Holmes

Re: The Government didn't do any risk assessment

I recieved the answer to that FOI request (by fax). I can reveal that the standard government risk assessment for aviation security is as follows:

Iz risk uf terrirism? Yes = over 9000

-----EOF-----

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D'oh! Amber Rudd meant 'understand hashing', not 'hashtags'

Brenda McViking
Joke

PPE!

You mentioned PPE. Had a good laugh at the twitter feed of Politics Philosophy and Economics graduates wearing Personal Protective Equipment

https://twitter.com/ppeinppe?lang=en

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BOFH: The Boss, the floppy and the work 'experience'

Brenda McViking

Re: Being on a placement myself...

If they're in for work experience (and still in school), there is every chance this will be the first time they're introduced to these bitter tasting adult drinks called tea and coffee. You'll be lucky if they've ever made one before.

Then again, when you're still a PFY straight out of university at 22, it's not always clear if "making the tea" is just a office prankster on a power trip trying to show the new PFY who is boss by taking the piss, or whether it's actually an important contribution to the team's daily ritual and it's your turn.

The way I dealt with it was to deliberately make the absolute worst cup of tea/coffee I could manage the very first time around (either use a heaped tablespoon of coffee per cup or break open the teabag so that it had bits swirling around in it and let it brew for a whole 2 seconds). This drink of course would be rejected within half a second of the first sip. The "power trip" types call you useless (but will never ask you again), whereas the "team contribution" types roll their eyes and show you how to do it properly, then they all have some minor ammunition to tease you with going forward which breaks the ice.

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New plastic banknote plans now upsetting environmental campaigners

Brenda McViking
Childcatcher

Re: Chubby vegans can be found...

I think that's only due to the fact that vegans in the UK are fanatical health-nuts, by and large.

I live in India right now and many vegans here have an obesity problem. And I can see why - the vegetarian curries are astonishingly good but can be heavy on oils, there are always plenty of carbs from the rice, chapatis, parathas and popadums, and that's before you've had the chai containing more sugar than a large bottle of coca cola. Why? Obesity is just a surplus calorie intake. Vegan food doesn't necessarily contain fewer calories.

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Brenda McViking

Re: best solution!

I've been there. And Malaysia, and yeah, there isn't much natural habitat left. Then again we can talk - UK forest was systematically destroyed to the point that it is today in our quest to industrialise.

Another 6 hectares for UK banknote production (read the consulation, that's all they'll need) won't make a blind bit of difference either way. This whole tallow thing is Parkinsons law of tiviality (the bike-sheds at a nuclear power plant argument) on steroids.

I've submitted my response to the consultation saying as such. I had no idea there was even a Jain network in Great Britain, let alone the fact that a religion compromising 0.039% of the population should force a change of Bank of England industrial processes. How about they stop using everything made of or utilising polypropylene before they start weighing in on the debate? Relgion is a lifestyle choice, just like using contactless. And the vegetarians soon shut up once they realise their home-cooked meal contains more human flesh in parts per million than banknotes contain tallow, because they were stood sweating and moulting and flaking over it whilst they were cooking.

Then there is the fact that this costs for making this entire argument and collecting responses is coming out of profits which otherwise go to the taxpayer.

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UK's 'homebrew firmware' Chinooks set to be usable a mere 16 years late

Brenda McViking
Trollface

Yeah, but they're the UV erasable ones and due to a rushed design, they're located on the outside of the helicopter where the sunroof was meant to be.

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Brenda McViking

Re: Of all time?

At least it was scrapped when it was *only* a mere 789m over budget. Usually these things drag on to 10x their original cost in a supposed face-saving exercise before someone brings out the guillotine.

As any half-way decent project manager will attest to, sometimes the most sensible thing to do to a project with massive cost overruns, a pathetic set of half-written requirements, no direction and clearly unattainable goals is not to try to be the hero who re-baselines and pretends to save the day by starting again, but to stop chasing your losses and just amputate.

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Samsung Galaxy S8: Slimmer bezels, a desktop mode – and yet another me-too AI pal

Brenda McViking

Re: Hmmmm

I too would have bought one had it had a removable battery. I'm on my 4th battery in the Galaxy S4 now.

It seems the only manufacturer to bother with making batteries removable nowadays is LG, which is a pity because whilst their hardware is nice, their software isn't and they cripple themselves by supporting things for a week before giving up.

I don't think we'll ever see removable batteries again from Sony or Samsung, high Ingress Protection ratings sell phones better than removable batteries. and apparently we can't have both. It has been years since they produced a flagship with a battery that could be removed.

Ironically, had the Note 7 had a removable battery, I reckon they'd have gotten away with a far cheaper, far simpler product recall and not lost 20 gazillion and their brand image in the process. If the S8 starts exploding too, they might be forced to re-think the stupidity of having an irreplacible low-cyclic-life consumable component. (Then again a counter argument is that if you make batteries replacable, people will replace them with the cheapest and most dangerous ebay combust-o-matic they can find, so maybe Trump is right and it actually IS all China's fault.)

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UK.gov confirms it won't be buying V-22 Ospreys for new aircraft carriers

Brenda McViking
Boffin

Re: We should build our own

Kind of hard to do a failsafe scram of the reactor control rods without gravity, but if you're willing to spend Apple's net worth on the problem then modifying the reactor for use in space could probably be done in the next couple of decades. I'd think the more fundamental issue would be radiating all the heat off the spacecraft so that you don't melt the thing with the amount of power it's producing.

Probes Voyager 1 & 2 both were nuclear powered (thermoelectric generation), but I understand a limiting factor of the power generation capacity was the heat that could be radiated effectively. That was around 430W at launch. Sub reactors are thought to be in the multi-megawatt range. Radiative heat transfer from a black body is q = σ T^4 A

where

q = heat transfer per unit time (W)

σ = 5.6703 10^-8 (W/m^2K^4) - The Stefan-Boltzmann Constant

T = absolute temperature in Kelvin (K)

A = area of the emitting body (m^2)

So either you need a heatsink material capable of getting to a very high temperature, or you need a massive surface area. Gold (melting point 1064C) over 1sq metre can dissipate a 180kW of heat- so you could radiate 47MW from an area the size of a tennis court at ideal conditions at a degree below it's melting point. Aluminium has a melting point of 660C so would radiate 11MW from a tennis court sized heatsink. This though is probably feasible for a nuclear space carrier.

AC because nuclear is supersecret and if I was identifiable as I told you all this I'd have to kill you.

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Squirrel sinks teeth into SAN cabling, drives Netadmin nuts

Brenda McViking

Re: How to blow up a rat

The animals are organised I tell you!

Successful Cyber War Ops of Squirrels, birds, rats, snakes and racoons to date

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Amazon dodges $1.5bn US tax bill: It's OK to run sales through Europe out of IRS reach – court

Brenda McViking

US tax liability

This sounds entirely sensible. Amazon Europe sell to customers in Europe, have warehouses in Europe and operate in Europe. The EU has decided on a unified tax structure that means you pay tax in just one EU country. Why should they pay US tax on that? Why would you even remotely consider that they'd have to pay US taxes on that?

I currently reside and work in India, and guess where I pay my taxes? India. I may have British citizenship, and the umbrella company that holds the indian subsiduary I work for may be listed on the main UK stock exchange, but I most certainly don't pay UK tax because none of my economic activity happens there - as it should be.

I still have to sign declarations every time I open a bank account saying I owe the US nothing and the US has no claim on anything of mine, despite having nothing whatsoever to do with them, I have never worked there, never been a resident there, and have no citizenship - indeed the same status I have with the ~200 other countries in the world, yet none of the rest of them have the arrogance to require that I declare this negative fact. I don't know why we, speaking as non-citizens of the US, put up with it at all.

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Good news, everyone! Two pints a day keep heart problems at bay

Brenda McViking
Go

Re: Cider!

Well my wine is obviously made from grapes, and the bottle says hints of dark cherry, blueberry and raisin, with a sweet raspberry finish.

So that's all 5 in a single drink!

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Brenda McViking
Pint

You're clearly too drunk to read the article properly: with "moderate" defined as around three pints of beer a day for men, and two glasses of wine for women (as recently as the 1960s, official health advice suggested that a bottle of wine a day was fine).

I'd say that was about moderate for my student days. I barely manage three pints a week now that I work full time. Not counting the whisky chasers...

There is only one definition of heavy drinking I agree with - and that's if you drink more than your doctor.

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NASA to fire 1Gbps laser 'Wi-Fi' ... into spaaaaace

Brenda McViking
Headmaster

>Go to urban dictionary

>Look up "Netflix and chill"

>Come back and apologise

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King Battistelli's swish penthouse office the Euro Patent Office doesn't want you to see

Brenda McViking
Joke

Well I think the Americans should learn from this glorious leader's actions - if they can make the USPO as ineffectual as the EPO with just one man at the top, then the rest of us in industry wouldn't have to keep worrying about whether stuff with milleniums' worth of prior art was patentable - after all, you cannot patent "slide to unlock" when everyone at the patent office is out on strike over the content of the last royal decree!

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Confirmed: TSA bans gear bigger than phones from airplane cabins

Brenda McViking
Black Helicopters

Re: Meh

Have you ever watched one of those "border control" programmes? they usually scan everything prior to putting it on the final baggage carousel, half the time it's how they know how to collar you when you try and exit through the "nothing to declare" lane - because that's the point at which you commit the offense, not before.

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Brenda McViking
Black Helicopters

Clearly one of the TSA employed monkeys at their typewriters eventually found the obligatory xkcd and reported the gaping security hole. SOMETHING MUST BE DONE!

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A router with a fear of heights? Yup. It's a thing

Brenda McViking

I also think it would be a cooling issue.

My home projector has a "high altitude mode" which judging by the noise it makes after it is enabled just spins the fans faster. Manual also says it is reccommended to run it in this mode if ambient temp is above 30C.

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60 slow-mo A-bomb test videos explode onto YouTube

Brenda McViking
Mushroom

Mesmerising

If anyone has the time to listen to an-almost-6-hour podcast, I've found the latest "Destroyer of Worlds" episode in Dan Carlin's Hardcore History Series to be a fantastic listen, all about the dawn of the nuclear age from 1945 to the mid 1960s, and it's currently free of charge.

The cold war ended when I was born. Whilst I'm sure a lot of the 'reg readership were around for the ebbs and flows of the cold war, as a Millenial I have never really considered what it may have been like for the leaders of the times after WWII being introduced to having to play age-old political games on a chessboard which all of a sudden was booby-trapped with nuclear weapons, (which even in current times of course, it still is) so I thought I'd share.

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Microsoft kills Windows Vista on April 11: No security patches, no hot fixes, no support, nada

Brenda McViking
Mushroom

I think the only question that ever mattered with regards to Vista - even since the early days of it's inception - was how should it be put out of it's misery? The Uninitiated used to say give it more RAM, but any professional would give you options:

- Firing Squad

- Hanging

- Electric Chair

- Lethal Injection

- Gas Chamber

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Barrister fined after idiot husband slings unencrypted client data onto the internet

Brenda McViking
Flame

A grand. for this?

Reading the penalty notice - apparently it's discounted 20% if you pay early and don't appeal. So actually the penalty could be as low as 800 quid. What an absolute mockery - as if it's as serious as a parking fine, barely a slap on the wrist.

She had better be identified to the clients whose information she leaked and sued if there is to be any justice from this. Considering that if it were an IT professional, they'd have had their entire life and career destroyed over such a transgression, not to mention a fine that they'd have to mortgage a typical house for.

I'm clearly in the wrong job. The risk:reward ratio for Law would appear to be absolutely laughable compared to any sort of job that you know... actually benefits society.

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Anti-TV Licensing petition gets May date for Parliament debate

Brenda McViking

Re: Good going cobber

Oh, we had a dangerous dual carriageway junction with a gap in the central reservation on a blind corner near us, and the speed cameras were put up after the 4th death. Then there was a 5th, and a 6th and they finally did what they should have done in the first place and engineered the solution using a roundabout.

The speed cameras are naturally still there, as is the 40mph limit. All for a danger that has been eliminated, over 10 years ago, by a properly engineered solution.

Plus the usual regression to the mean that the siting of speed cameras inevitably produces:

Have an unusally high number of accidents in 3 years. Place speed camera. Have average number of accidents next 3 years. Conclude speed camera was the reason for the reduction in accident rate. More on that if you want to read it

I'd have failed my degree statistics module if that was my reasoning.

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Watt the f... Dim smart meters caught simply making up readings

Brenda McViking
Boffin

Re: Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery

That comment on power factor you quote was mine. And I made the implicit assumption that the metering devices accurately measure current, voltage and phase angle at the supply to correctly calculate kWh. Power factor does affect domestic metering devices but they take it into consideration to produce your kWh units.

I've ready the full text of the study as I have an IEEE subscription. Domestic single phase electronic meters (the ones your energy supplier will install in your home) were tested and the following conclusion reached: The results can be summarized in one sentence: no deviation beyond the specification could be observed; no influence of interference due to interfering or distorted voltage, and no influence caused by interfering currents were observed. Thus, home smart meters do not exhibit the effects described in the article. Dang.

The study is instead looking at commercial premises 3-phase meters, and the influence of sites with non-linear, fast switching devices causing high levels of electromagnetic interference, the example given was a farm with a large solar array plus some motors using drives. For these 3-phase meters, they did not fare well under certain specific conditions, with the Hall-effect sensors under-reading and the Rogowski sensors over-reading. They did not fully identify the root cause but believe it was due to the test-setup causing current saturation in the sensor, which occured if sufficiently fast current pulses were fed to the meter.

So yeah, makes for great headlines, and indeed highlights a problem, but not one that affects the general public at large.

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Palmtop nostalgia is tinny music to my elephantine ears

Brenda McViking
Coat

I've nothing of value to contribute

But the bit about headphones resonated with me,

Yes,

Okay,

No need to shove, I'm going already

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User rats out IT team for playing games at work, gets them all fired

Brenda McViking
Alien

Mission Control

Legend has it (and i've heard it from a friend of a friend so this could well be complete BS) that a certain ESA satellite programme had mission control playing a modified networked version of DOOM on all the big screens played by the various system controllers, with some cleverly coded interrupts which would immediately pause the game and bring the satellite monitors back up on any alert that manifested itself on the system and required intervention from any one of them.

I was told that typically, this was an environment where you'd get 5 minutes of intense activity required followed by hours of nothing happening until another alert, so they had plenty of time to amuse themselves between events.

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Two-thirds of TV Licensing prosecutions at one London court targeted women

Brenda McViking

RE:Confused of Canada

So to try to answer your question: there is very specific wording that governs the TV licence. The BBC have a charter, which ensures it is at arms length from the government, is not wholey funded by the taxpayer, and also has rules governing how it is to operate such as being available to all. This also prevents it using general taxation or subscription methods to be funded (though this could change with a change in laws). The charter is renewed every 10 years, and has been deliberately set up to preserve the status quo.

The rules:

In order to watch TV programmes as they are being broadcast in the UK, you must have a TV licence. As of last year, to watch iPlayer (the video on demand service of the BBC) you must have a TV licence.

If you don't fall into those two categories, you don't have to have a licence. So for me, I have Netflix & Amazon subscriptions and only watch TV on demand and not iPlayer - i don't require a licence. I have TVs but they're all for console gaming or watching DVDs. I still don't require a licence.

Personally I would object to having to pay the BBCs bills because I don't use their content.

Would it work out cheaper if paid via general taxation? probably. But then I would have to pay and the selfish type of capitalist I am, I don't want to pay for something I don't use, nor, in my opinion, find of benefit to the public at large. (Though you'd find plenty of my countrymen willing to argue it is of public benefit)

If they went to a subscription model, you'd still have people like me not paying, the effect of general inertia of the populace and the lack of people succumbing to their threats so it would almost certainly raise costs for those who wanted it if the BBC wanted to maintain it's current level of funding. Not to mention that plenty of people don't watch the BBC but do watch other broadcasters and currently legally have to pay the BBC, and wouldn't have to under subscription.

So we're stuck in this ridiculous situation where it's an apparently optional cost, requiring significant knowledge of the loopholes to avoid (as I do), and using threats and legally powerless enforcement officers to shake down those who are suspected of evasion. It is very deliberately kept vague as to what rights their enforcers have (actually very few, though they give the impression they are the equivalent of the police with search warrants) and as such, hundreds of people are prosecuted every year when their only way of catching such people is to get them to self-incriminate themselves. Whilst I object to freeloaders, I object more to the enforcement methods which no other organisation would ever get away with, and thus, I (legally) do not pay for a TV Licence.

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VMware bumps certification exam prices, one by $2700

Brenda McViking
Devil

Certification

Obl Dilbert

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Amazon S3-izure cause: Half the web vanished because an AWS bod fat-fingered a command

Brenda McViking

I remain impressed

By the ability of amazon to do a route cause so quickly and go public with it.

In most corporates I've worked with it would take them at least 3 months to figure this out, even with C-Suite backing, and they'd only admit it 2 years later, because lawyers or something.

Makes a breath of fresh air that they have kept us informed. Unlike say, every bank ever, or talktalk, or adobe. Although naturally they've used up 5 years of their standard 99.99% availability quota in a single day so I'm by no means advocating they get supplier of the year... Just that others might learn that this is the proper way to keep users informed after a crisis.

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Smart meter firm EDMI asked UK for £7m to change a single component

Brenda McViking

Re: The pi-zero w is less than £10 and I bet it would do all they need and more.

Power factor is just about the degree to which voltage and current waveforms in AC systems are leading or lagging each other (they're both sine waves, but are they in phase - i.e. overlapping, or does the voltage wave peak before the ampere wave?). If you're measuring watts, it has no effect, as it's all real power and the power drawn will be the same no matter the phase between the two. You're averaging the sine waves then multiplying them. Power factor plays no part, and as a residential consumer, you're billed on real power.

Commercial premises might be billed on apparent power (kVA) rather than real power (kW), and hence they might benefit from looking at whether their power factor is costing them extra. (reason being, that current and voltage being out of phase increases losses and reduces capacity for real power to be delivered by the grid.) Nonetheless the EU are determined to start regulating LEDs because of their power factor, without understanding the subject (they're usually capacitive devices, the grid usually lags, thus low power factor LEDs in every home will make the grid more, not less efficient).

Your belkin adapter is not lying, modern lump in lead adaptors will be taking milliwatts when nothing is plugged in the other end. It's not the 90s anymore. Your phone charger might draw 10W at full chat. Greenpeace say you'll save the world by unplugging them. They're lying. You'll save more energy by switching off the oven/immersion heater 5 minutes earlier than you would by unplugging 20 mobile phone chargers every day for a year.

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Boeing seeks patent for mobile device case with built-in fire extinguisher

Brenda McViking

Re: I wouldn't....

Most pilots now fly with electronic flight manuals, something the rest of the world might recognise as an ipad, and hence a brick of lithium-ion which will combust if damaged. This is something relatively new in the industry but very commonplace now.

Pilots have supplementary oxygen masks right next to them,

And Halon is about the only fire suppression agent which wouldn't damage the rest of the avionics, which would still supress a lithium battery fire. This is not halon in the quantities that you used to flood the entire datacentre once upon a time. The CO2 used in this device is more dangerous to the pilots and avionics as it actually displaces oxygen. Halon doesn't work that way, rather it chemically inhibits the fire, not through oxygen displacement. Nor is it all that dangerous to Humans. There is plenty of halon on most aircraft anyway for cargo-hold fire suppression. And whilst the environmental concerns are valid, aircraft safety has historically taken prescedence, which is why we still use lead in solder.

Choice between Halon discharge + fly on supplemental oxygen versus a burning iPad on the flight deck? Ask any pilot.

Here is the FAAs current guide to fighting portable electronics fires in the passenger cabin.

and guess what fire suppression agent they reccommend?

https://www.faa.gov/other_visit/aviation_industry/airline_operators/airline_safety/safo/all_safos/media/2009/SAFO09013.pdf

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Security slip-ups in 1Password and other password managers 'extremely worrying'

Brenda McViking

Re: Happy 1Password User

Well that's a major security risk right there.

Don't give anyone potential access to your financial accounts. Banks, unsurprisingly, deal with people dying all the time, and will NEVER expect those still on this earth to have access to the passwords. Indeed, people have been dragged through the courts for accessing accounts of dead relatives thinking they're doing something completely innocent, whereas actually it is unauthorised access of a computer system and the associated terrorism acts that deal with these incidents. And you cannot explain that it's all a grave misunderstanding and that it was you, breaking the Ts and Cs and leaving said relatives the passwords, cause ye've kicked the bucket already, so the banks are duty-bound to investigate and prosecute for fraud.

By all means leave them a list of accounts you have. But not the passwords, you'll cause them far more hassle.

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Trump's cartoon comedy approach to running a country: 'One in, two out' rule for regulations

Brenda McViking
Thumb Up

Wish someone would have the balls to do this in the UK.

The code of Federal Regulations was 71,224 pages in 1975 to 178,277 at the end of 2015. No wonder an advisor to Reagan and Bush is complaining - they're undoing all of those lovely rules he likes to impose on other people!

Regulations have their place, but too many of them stifle innovation. Look at F1 - they put in so many rules that they had to race based on tyres. I don't know about you but I think the rulebook should be capable of being learnt by an average Joe in under 6 months. With 178,277 pages to get through, he doesn't have a hope in hell unless he can get through 978 pages a day. Particularly when they effectively could be boiled down to don't harm your neighbour or the environment too much, if you're messing with peoples lives you'd better do it safely, and play fair. Have that on the regulatory rulebook and use the courts as the acid test.

Rather than you know, letting anyone who works in a government office and has an opinion mandating that horseless carriages shall have a top speed of 2mph and be preceeded by a man carrying a red flag. Governments love regulations - it makes them feel important, gives them carte blanche to hire lots of inspectors and bureaucrats (job creation, yay!) and they pay for it using your money through higher taxes. What's not to love?

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Visa cries foul over Euro regulator's stronger authentication demands

Brenda McViking
Facepalm

Re: Good.

No, I'm criticising it because of the additional attack vectors a european government mandated system would inevitably bring to the table. What was it you were saying about ID theft?

And how does it make bank systems more secure anyway? It's the EU equivalent of mastercard securecode or verified by visa - which have been around for years as a bad solution looking for a problem, and you want to bring the eurocrats in to make it better?

I can see them now - mandate a hashing algo for your card number and password, which they'll contract crapita to implement, (so that'll be md5, to save costs), and it'll then be mandatory to use that from 2018 onwards (when the euro decline has reached 10EUR = 1USD), and no exceptions.

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The hated Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal will soon be dead. Yay?

Brenda McViking

That's half the story though, isn't it - jobs and wages. What about those very same hardworking people who also want to utlise their free time and money? Or is the definition of paradise 24/7 employment at 800$/hr for everyone?

Simplifying commerce allows you to get far more from your hard earned graft, because you can buy whatever service or shiny product pleases you from whomever in the world makes it the cheapest and the best. It's kind of the point of trade - you get stuff that fufils your desires that would otherwise be out of your reach.

Sent from my Chinese computer, over Taiwanese made fibre optic cable, through Korean made servers using British designed semiconductors, running American software (coded by Bangalore), operated by a German ISP to a UK website, hosted in Ireland.

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More movie and TV binge-streaming sites join UK banned list

Brenda McViking
Joke

I for one, will sleep better at night knowing that these hardened terrorist pirate scum have been sank to the depths of Davy Jone's locker by the brave and courageous MPA.

another 13 IP addresses blocked, just another 4 billion to go, then they will be truly victorious!

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C'mon, it's the current year! Report finds UK gov could save £2bn by modernising IT

Brenda McViking
Childcatcher

Re: Title Correct

Nah, 2bn is the saving - the cost to achieve half of that will be at least 25bn. The other half of the savings will be eaten up by "avoiding job losses." Because losing civil service jobs is bad mmm'kay?

0
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iPhone fatigue and fading Samsung. This planet is bored with big brand phones

Brenda McViking
Go

Re: "A radical redesign is in the offing..."

Here's a radical idea - how about putting things back in these latest flagships so that I might actually buy one. Stuff like micro SD card slots, a removable battery, and software updates for at least 2 years.

I'm still on my Galaxy S4. I've not seen any "upgrade" in features whatsoever from any of the usual suspects.

As for new stuff - I want holography, a projector, edge lighting effects, fully immersible, radar, lidar, sonar, a tricorder, taser, pen-knife, the ability to hover, a smoke generator, and replacable fuel cells giving me 10 weeks of charge at a time. And I want it for less than 200USD. When can you start?

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First World Problems: John Lewis clients forced to re-register after website 'upgrade'

Brenda McViking
Big Brother

Re: BBC just did the same to me

Pah - it's a thinly disguised attempt to make sure you're paying your telly tax like a good citizen. Now that they've got it into law that iPlayer requires one.

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Password1? You're so random. By which we mean not random at all - UK.gov

Brenda McViking

Re: Password managers FFS!

Password managers introduce a single point of failure, there is a serious trust relationship which is highly questionable for any password manager, and that's before you consider using a cloud-based one. Then there are issues with mutliple devices, lack of internet connectivity, or lack of ownership of devices you may be accessing secure accounts on.

They might work for you, but they are not a silver bullet.

3
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No NY love for Airbnb

Brenda McViking
Devil

Having just come back from an airbnb stay in NYC (Not an illegal one, landlord was living in the apartment) I can tell you that I simply wouldn't have gone had I had to rely on hotels. The price in Manhattan was eyewatering enough as it was at $80pppn with airbnb, the hotels were more like $110pppn + tax.

However, for that money we had a lovely host, who provided us with everything we asked for and plenty we didn't, like a welcome hamper. He gave us tips on where to go, and looked after us really well. With our friends staying in a hotel, they reported that they were forced to wait 2 hours (at 1am) for a hotel room as theirs had been double booked (despite their guarantee), wifi was $25 a day, and they were given nought but a free croissant for their trouble at check-in. Service, eh?

Much like the NYC taxi medallion insanity has been stemmed by uber, (they don't cost $1m a year anymore - a price that was being passed to the general public), the hotel industry could do with a royal kick in the ass and buck-up their ideas. I wish airbnb all the best with their suit. As far as I'm concerned, if you have an apartment, you should be able to do whatever the hell you like with it without some encumbant hotelier sticking their noses in.

I mean, maybe Starbucks should be able to fine you $3 every time you boil a kettle when you have friends around, because you're eating into their profits because your water supply doesn't have to abide by regulations that apply to them. Or have Subway pass a law that says you can't make sandwiches for yourself and the kids if you only do it once a week. How is this any different?

2
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Finally, that tech fad's over: Smartwatch sales tank more than 50%

Brenda McViking

Re: I like mine

I have a Sony Smartwatch2 which I got for 50 quid. Lasts around 4 days on a charge.

At that price point, the thing made sense to me. And after around 6 months of ownership, I wouldn't go back to a dumbwatch now - whilst the added features are somewhat limited, they are useful on a daily basis, to the point where I would now be annoyed if I didn't have them. I no longer get my phone out of my pocket 20 times a day to see nothing but a linkedin notification for example. I can actually have a working speedo on my wrist riding the bike, and the "find my phone" feature alone has saved me about 10 hours of back-of-the-sofa searching by itself. I've stopped leaving my phone in the car too, as I lose connection accompanied by a buzz when it's 10-15m away.

Equally I'm not going to shell out GBP250+ on a brand new shiny one - my watches have typically lasted me 3-5 years before looking tired and that isn't going to change just because this one has a microprocessor. So I agree with the other posters saying those that want them, probably have them by now.

1
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Mercedes answers autonomous car moral dilemma: Yeah, we'll just run over pedestrians

Brenda McViking
Go

Lets play a game

There is a research project going on at MIT for "morality" of self driving cars which anyone can have a go at - The MIT Moral Machine

Very similar to "the trolley problem" mentioned elsewhere

3
0

'Please label things so I can tell the difference between a mouse and a microphone'

Brenda McViking

Labelling

I work in a corporate with a load of engineers in an office, we have manufacturing too.

We had an initiative to tidy everything up, after a few years back a 28m order was delayed by 2 days whilst they tried to find the right socket on the shop floor. Now we have "a place for everything, and everything in its place." Which C suite decided was such a good idea, everyone must do it, and made it mandatory not only for the shop, but all the design and research offices too.

It also applies to individually owned engineering desks. Cue Mike from R&D, who is a genius but about as organised as a street-hookers diary (you know, desk permanently bowed from the stack of paper which has probably been there since 1992.) After recieving his 6th weekly red card in a row, HR sent their best droid to tell him that he was not immune and would face disciplinary action if he didn't conform to the new policy.

He mumbled about quitting, but he still had about 8 months until his retirement, so he got on with clearing his desk. Took him the best part of a week to dismantle his paper mountains, and he was so cross by the end of it that he labelled everything on his desk, phone, keyboard, mouse, and even put coloured taped rectangles for his laptop, keyboard position, phone position, mouse position and a little rectangle labelled "Green Card" for the HR droid to place on his next rounds.

Said droid came on the Friday and stopped dead looking at Mikes desk. Mike was in attendance at the time with a murderous glare fixated on him. Both Mike and the droid remained entirely silent throughout the ordeal, but the rest of the office were wetting themselves trying to stifle the giggles. He got his green card that day.

40
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Amazon supremo Bezos' Blue Origin blows its top over Texas desert

Brenda McViking

Re: The crew capsule of death?

Well acceleration of a mass with a force is Newtons second law. I'm going to assume it's that simple.

70,000lbf against 8000lbs (from the article) = 8.75g acceleration

A typical flighter plane ejection is around 20g (mostly because the seat and pilot don't have much mass and you have to get out quick enough to avoid the tail of the aircraft hitting you) and bones break around 25g, it's not excessive. You might well be incapacitated for the time you're under that much g but that doesn't exactly matter.

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Amazon to hire 20,000 seasonal workers in UK

Brenda McViking
Go

Re: Oh good

It's fine.

As soon as zero hours contracts are gone and everyone is on the living wage, these warehouses will be able to justify the cost of full automation so they won't need 20k unskilled employees over Christmas, they'll make do with about 20 technical overseers and a few mechanics for the robots.

Stop the exploitation of the people! Make them unemployed instead...

2
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A year living with the Nexus 5X – the good, the bad, and the Nougat

Brenda McViking

Re: But why did they use USB-C?

I'm sure Europe are putting together a prosecution for it - to be fair they've only just got onto the anticompetitive CD drive sales after CRT monitor price fixing - Apple will no doubt get their come-uppance in 2042.

3
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UK will build new nuclear bomb subs, says Defence Secretary

Brenda McViking
Trollface

Re: Vanguard, Victorious, Vigilant and Vengeance

I think we need to ask the internet what to name them by popular vote

21
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Can you make a swarm of 20+ flying military robots? UK.gov wants you

Brenda McViking

Re: The EASA might have something to say about drone usage.

Well consider that in the US, thanks to kneejerk FAA regulations, that a drone swarm with 20+ drones would need a human swarm with 20+ operators on the ground keeping line of sight and a killswitch for each drone.

Drones do need regulating as in the hands of moron consumers, they do pose a real danger to aircraft. Model aircraft in the hands of a moron lasted 1-3 flights, so it was a self-controlling problem, but these multirotors are just too damn easy to get hold of and fly with no skill, no awareness and no clue. I agree that regulations however need to be properly thought out rather than just outlawing perfectly responsible flyers.

A licence already exists for flying these things, so rather than wasting effort in regulating the industry out of existance, it would be far better to introduce a licencing and qualification system to ensure those people with access to drones which pose a hazard to aircraft are aware of that fact and recieve some semblance of training to ensure that they too become responsible flyers.

My first port of call would be getting the model aircraft hobbyists onboard - and their clubs & societies could easily become the licensors much in the same way as gun clubs act in the safegaurding of legal firearms, or diving centres qualify divers, or yachting, motorsport - Virtually every hobby with an element of danger to it operates in this way.

3
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QANTAS' air safety spiel warns not to try finding lost phones

Brenda McViking

Re: The ultimate iPhone destruction video waiting to be made?

On long haul business class, BA is fully lie flat. Emirates and Etihad are fully lie flat. Heck, even Air India does fully lie flat in biz. You don't need to fly first to get a fully flat bed - this has been the case for at least the last decade.

And yes, a phone is all too easy to lose into one of those seats and will be crushed - these seats are designed to raise a 250lb truely "fat" cat exec sat in it from flat to bolt upright in 15 seconds, they'll happily crush anything in their mechanisms.

0
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Brexit and data protection: A period of shock and reflection

Brenda McViking
Pint

The 7 stages of Brexit

From the remainers perspective...

SHOCK - Woah, WTF?! The polls and markets didn't see this coming...

DENIAL - its not legally binding anyway, right?

ANGER - FUCKING PENSIONERS! UNEDUCATED TWATS! NORTHERN RACISTS! FARAGE!!!

BARGAINING - *signs petition for 2nd referendum on facebook*

DEPRESSION - Fuck. I'm really stuck on this little island now...

TESTING - *googles how to become an Irish citizen*

ACCEPTANCE - It's Friday, that means it's beer o'clock!

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