* Posts by Ledswinger

6978 posts • joined 1 Jun 2012

Visa fingers 'very rare' data centre switch glitch for payment meltdown

Ledswinger
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Failure rate

The numbers they quote are nonsense, since a number of large chain retailers gave up and simply put signs up saying "cash only". The true failure rate would be much higher because it would need to include the "unattempted but originally intended" transactions. Like my Friday night shopping.

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What can you do when the pup of programming becomes the black dog of burnout? Dude, leave

Ledswinger
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Once you've been through this exercise rejig your CV from the same viewpoint. I'll guarantee you'll get more interviews.

I can absolutely confirm that this works, having used it myself, but also when sitting on the hiring side of the table. Imagine you're the recruiter (as you may have been) - last thing you want is to have to wade through a load of identical CVs where the author offers a glowing personal portrait at the top, and then spews a chronological list of jobs at you, expecting you to pick out what matters in each of them.

Just put the career history very briefly and factually on the second page (you think anybody ever turns to page three?) and focus page one on short paragraphs that pick out your experience using as closely as possible the desired criteria for the job. When you try that you'll find it harder than it sounds, eg chopping verbose requirements down to pithy titles that the recruiter will still recognise as their own, and then you have to pull out a good example of when and how you've exhibited that skill set.

But it works. Give it a go. And again, personal experience, sod the golden handcuffs. There's times when you have to accept that earning more money simply isn't worth the unhappiness and stress, and if that means a few sacrifices, or downsizing the house, what the hell - is sixty hours a week of misery a good tradeoff for a larger mortgage, and plusher car?

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♬ Finland, Finland, Finland, the country for new cloud DCs ♬

Ledswinger
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Re: Hmmm...

Of interest would be to know the level of tax they pay in Finland.

Using 2016 Eurostat data (couldn't be bothered to look harder), Finland's tax to GDP ratio is about 44%, compared to around 47% in France, 41% in Germany, 35% UK. For a range of reasons, a good rule of thumb is that the more north westerly an EU country is (British Isles excepted) the higher the rate of tax.

That of course includes corporate taxes and indirect taxes like VAT, but the most significant difference in terms of effective personal tax rates is probably the various allowances, credits and offsets, as well as the tapering of both tax rates and reliefs.

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Capita admits it won't make money on botched NHS England contract

Ledswinger
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Re: Hmm

Another way to read that is Crapita saved the tax payer $140m. If this was kept in house the tax payer would have to stump this and probably more.

That would depend on whether they delivered the project in the same way. The tragic thing is that all of this is very simple in concept, with the complexity mainly in the data and interfaces. The way most of these projects go wrong is that they make the concept complex, and assume simplicity in the data and interfaces.

There's only two levels for the concept, the processes, and the IT (which is largely transaction processing tied to a very simple database or three). You design a robust and common process around what the users of the system want. It is important to pay lip service to the requirements spec issued by procurement, but the actual requirement must be based on what the end users want to achieve (procurement won't have asked them). All of the business units have to accept the new process - or pay from their own budget for a custom process - this usually shuts up the whiners. Then you either build new, or preferably re-use any existing halfway adequate systems according to the new process, and roll in the "client" workload sequentially, knowing that the first 40% of easy records will go across with few problems, and then you'll unearth all the skeletons when you move from 40-60% of the data. So you don't rush it.

There's no rocket science. And typically, when you take a bunch of different organisations and systems, somewhere there's a process that's working at least adequately, and somebody has an IT system that isn't a disaster. Best option is build out from those things that work, so ideally not everybody, every process and every system are changed.

When you look at the fuck ups that Crapita are associated with, the hugely costly messes they create for non functioning systems (like Army recruitment), it's quite clear that the vendor are simply incompetent, unfortunately so is their client.

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National ID cards might not mean much when up against incompetence of the UK Home Office

Ledswinger
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A mandatory ID Card system will not (and should not) be accepted by the population

As a general rule, the establishment prefer not to give the population much of a say, so to say that any such measure will not be accepted ignores many decades of finely honed skill in doing what the establishment want, without proper consultation. Arguably the Brexit issue shows why they don't, but also the singing up to all the EU treaties proves the case that they happily do stuff without considering public opinion or unintended consequences.

And there's plenty of ways they can do this. Bury things in vague wording deeply in the depths of manifestos that nobody reads so they can claim a "popular mandate"; Implement measures at the whim of a minister's pen (via secondary legislation); Or leave it to some unelected civil service "regulator" to define the law in practice. And that's before the official mis-information system kicks in. Persuade people that ID cards will help solve their concerns of excessive levels of immigration or abuse of NHS services - that'll be the ticket! At the same time invoke the usual fear factors of terrorists, paedophiles, Russians, and international money laundering.

Now who would be the decisive fool to force through such a stupid, flawed idea? Ladies & Gentlemen, clap with one hand for your future Home Secretary, Smeagol Gove. And anybody who think's that is humour should consider the depth and breadth of mediocrity across both front benches at Westminster, and the fact that Gove has besmirched education, and is now laying waste to the DEFRA portfolio - in the eyes of top Tories, he will be a contender for one of the top four cabinet jobs in future reshuffles . Of course, if Corbyn wins the next election, the outcome will be the same since we should expect Diane Abbott to get the Home Secretary role.

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Now Microsoft ports Windows 10, Linux to homegrown CPU design

Ledswinger
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I also doubt MS will have the patience to push this platform until it gets traction, and given MS' recent and past track-record, nobody will bank on it anyway.

A view I share. As described the technology sounds very interesting, but over and above the "it's Microsoft", I have a further challenge: Why have neither Intel, AMD, ARM or Samsung developed a similar approach, or bought this particular technology in from academia? You can argue that Intel, and to an extent ARM are victims of their own success and would dismiss it as "not invented here", but AMD could certainly do with a technology break out.

Do those companies know something that MS don't?

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Strip Capita of defence IT contract unless things improve – Brit MPs

Ledswinger
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Re: Why stop at defence?

That's why Gove should have been shuffled from the Ministry of Allotments to the MOD.

You don't think there's already an elegant sufficiency of decisive fools at the MoD?

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Ledswinger
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Re: 3% of GDP?

Are they serious?

Don't worry, to achieve 3% they'd need to spend an extra £15bn a year. Having just promised the NHS a rising amount to eventually be a further £20bn a year without any clarity on funding, there's no way they will be able to genuinely find a further £15bn for Abbey Wood to piss away on dysfunctional tat, and thus it will be achieved by the normal and simple expedient that I call "lying".

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Apple hauled into US Supreme Court over, no, not ebooks, patents, staff wages, keyboards... but its App Store

Ledswinger
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Re: Conflicted feelings...

on a PC I built myself (agonizing over parts selection sometimes for minutes on end

Pah! A true enthusiast agonises for so long over every individual component, that by the time they've made their mind up the whole build has been made obsolete. Or at least that's how it works for me.

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Wires, chips, and LEDs: US trade bigwigs detail Chinese kit that's going to cost a lot more

Ledswinger
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Re: Every one

Perhaps the third one is that you can't run trade surpluses if you are the global reserve currency.

On the other hand, you can run trade deficits almost indefinitely - until people find a different reserve currency. The US government should study history a bit more, and they might see some parallels in how the dollar supplanted the pound as the global reserve.

Then they need to additionally consider that although there's an assumption that there has to be a single alternative (and thus that unless there's a better candidate, the existing reserve remains strong) with the evolution of technology that may not hold true. Which really ought to worry the US government.

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CIOs planning to snub Oracle for other cloudy vendors – analyst

Ledswinger
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Oracle doesnt have customers, it has prisoners.

And that's an outcome of the hugely common, but faulty idea that "we're not an IT company, we should use an expert IT company for our ERP". Speaking with some knowledge of this, the small number of companies who manage to use third party ERP successfully are bricks and mortar retailers. They demand -and get- code held in escrow, change of control provisions, commitments on price inflation, and exit without penalty clauses, as well as a keen price and strong guarantees on performance. The reason for this is that they have expert purchasing teams and engaged directors who ask the right questions.

Whereas, a government, energy sector, or telecoms buyer, nope. Their purchasing team is often very, very good within their sector specialism....but outside it they're worse than a four year old negotiating a sweet purchase. And it's these outfits who are the prisoners. Even doing daft stuff like buying up-and-coming ERP systems without realising the corporate dynamics of the sector mean that it will be borged, sunsetted, and they'll be even worse off....

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Unbreakable smart lock devastated to discover screwdrivers exist

Ledswinger
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Re: As I was reading...

Maybe I'm right to continue to start with distrust and allow them to try to build up from there.

Originally, stock exchanges were created to bring together speculative investors and entrepreneurs + crooks. They were staggeringly successful in both categories. Over a couple of hundred years the unimaginative, the lazy, and the stupid (so neither investors, entrepreneurs, or crooks) have added sufficient bureaucracy and regulation that stock exchanges have ceased to be a source of capital for formative businesses.

In that respect crowdfunding has to be applauded, and regulation resisted. There have been and will be many failures, and lots of fraud. But the whole point of equity investment is that it involves risk. If you can't afford to lose your stake, you shouldn't be playing.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Falling IQ scores

However, in my defence, it has to be said that people do seem to be getting stupider as the years go by

This was known almost a quarter of a century ago.

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DeepMind Health told to explain business model, relationship to Google

Ledswinger
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Re: Wow

For the health data, it might be enough to just store it in AWS instead of Google? I doubt it's a significant amount of money, and at least, it would calm down the people who think Google will covertly use it for advertising.

I suspect that any cloud services provider would not give a flying f*** what their customer did with the data, so you're right. The simpletons would be pleased, but business as usual at Google Towers.

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... Aaaand that's a fifth Brit Army Watchkeeper drone to crash in Wales

Ledswinger
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Re: what are they doing?

The government has abdicated funding the police force, mental health services and social services properly. You can't blame Labour any more, the Cons have now been mismanaging the economy and foreign affairs for 8 years solid.

Well,l if the knob-ends of the Labour party hadn't presided over the UK's share of the 2008 financial crisis, and hadn't pissed all the money up the wall on PFI and fuck-knows-what, you'd have case.

I'd be the first to agree that the Cameron/May governments are utterly incompetent - but to imply that Labour weren't culpable for the state of public finances you'd have to be criminally stupid (and I don't believe you are).

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Ledswinger
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Re: what are they doing?

I know you guys let them put a gazillion CC cameras in London (which is probably a good idea with all the undesirables there now)

Hasn't helped a jot. There have been 74 murders in 2018 in London, and about 2,000 moped robberies a month. For all the CCTV, the Metropolitan Police appear to have abdicated control of the streets.

why is the army flying surveillance drones over civilian areas?

Because we haven't got a war to go to. But in this case, it's development and training flying, not domestic surveillance. Nobody lives in West Wales (well, a few esteemed commentards do).

You guys put up with alot more of this kind of crap than we yanks would.

Maybe. Looking at what your TLAs have been up to, and the abuse of both process, law and technology by your police, I think that USAians are worse off than we are. At least our domestic surveillance agency (GCHQ) is constrained by both funding and its own incompetence, and our police aren't running routinely armed and busy shooting off like they're at the OK Corral.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Thales

But but but, conservatives tell us that private companies are amazing.... so it couldn't be Thales' fault, could it?

I don't know. You could ask the Labour government of Tony Blair that placed this contract with Thales in 2005, maybe?

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Ledswinger
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Re: Thales

But what about the five unaccounted ones?

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Ledswinger
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Re: Savings

So, does it save money on the project if we keep on crashing them?

I very much doubt that. The contract will probably have either a "take or pay" structure that means the payments to Thales and their fellow bunglers are guaranteed regardless of losses (because lord forbid they should lose out if a few were shot down). Or they'll have a "loss of profit" clause if the volume of work declines from that expected, in which case we save a tiny bit, but they make as much money overall.

MoD Procurement is a name associated with deep and abiding incompetence, and with a long and distinguished history of failure. Their amateurish buyers will be no match for the well structured, professional, experienced and heavily incentivised teams of lawyers and technical sales people doing the selling.

The way to "sew up the pocket" would be to cast MoD Abbey Wood into some other dimension of time and space.

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Swiss cops will 'tolerate' World Cup rabble-rousers – for 60 minutes

Ledswinger
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Re: 'Rugby is not followed much in Switzerland'

If the dogs are all barking 24/7, I'm pretty sure they're getting into the "party favors" of those 5am ragers!

Not at all, they're those fucking awful yapping rat dogs that just go "yapapyapyapapyapyapapyapyapapyapyapapyapyapapyapyapapyap yapapyapyapapyapyapapyapyapapyap yapapyapyapapyapyapapyap. yapapyapyapapyapyapapyap..."

forever. And particularly on a pleasant afternoon when you'd like to relax in the garden with a glass of beer listening to nothing more disturbing than bird song.

Bastard, horrible little things, unable to go "WOOF", the sort of horrible runty little animals that try and bite people's heels. Jack Russells, I HATE them. Join me, commentards, on my noble quest, sign up, contribute, become a member of CARD, the Campaign Against Rubbish Dogs.

A ten pound donation buys a Bulgarian hit man to assassinate a chihuahua .

Twenty pounds would contract an Albanian strangler to take out two Yorkshire terriers.

Thirty pounds could facilitate a children's small dog stamping party.

A regular fifteen pound a month contribution could support a researcher looking to propagate fatal defects in the genes of pedigree Pekinese.

A thirty pound a month agreement could have moped hoodlums snatch and drown eight small yappy dogs each and every month.

A one off £1,100 payment buys you life membership of CARD, sponsors the training of four large, respectable dogs to eat small ones, includes a CARD car radiator badge, and the "hints and tips" book for running over small dogs, and connects you with our Illuminati network of small yappy dog haters. Special offer: Sign up now, and get a pair of cufflinks depicting a Maltese Terrier crushed by a steamroller!

Ledswinger, Founder, Chief Executive & Life President of the Campaign Against Rubbish Dogs

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Indiegogo lawyer asks ZX Spectrum reboot firm: Where's the cash?

Ledswinger
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Optimists

I'll wager it's all gone. Vanished in expenses, management salaries, and 4p on product development.

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Former FBI boss Comey used private email for official business – DoJ

Ledswinger
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Having read his A Higher Loyalty recently ....

Why? Are you a literary masochist?

I hope you feel guilty, now because its people like you that create the demand for this stuff. As guilty as the perpetrator himself. If nobody bought the bilge spouted by politicians and high rank administrative officials, the supply would dry up.

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Da rude sand storm seizes the Opportunity, threatens to KO rover

Ledswinger
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Re: A place in history

NOW there are 'business processes' involving scrutinising of engineering ideas by accountants and 'program managers' that suck up money yet (even when consultants opine in reports) fail to sparkle or fail completely.

With all due respect, and noting that I've got feet on either side of the fence (ouch), if you leave many engineers to their own devices you don't get good, efficient outcomes. Often, having oversight and input from intelligent inexperts is very valuable. Both in calling out shit ideas that the engineers are too close to to realise, or in constraining the ambition to what can be afforded. Back in the good old days, it was often the case that the overall concept could be conceived and managed by a good engineer, unaided. As schemes have become more complex its often the case that you need a multi-skilled team - like it or not.

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Thought the AT&T Time-Warner tie-up was scary? Comcast says 'hold my beer'

Ledswinger
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Re: Last seen looking down the back of the sofa

ABC leans left, sometimes obviously so, making for "popcorn time" when/if Fox crawls into the same tent.

Why? If I were wheezing through my face mask and dealing evil to the universe, then I'd want to control important channels appealing to all parts of the political spectrum. Leave the ABC and Fox channel management to do what they want, with the proviso of keeping the money flowing. If one channel claims that black is white, and the other that white is black, it matters not a jot when all that matters to the board is making more money.

The big problem here is that unlike AT&T/TW, this is a straightforward acquisition, meaning that there will be a huge acquisition premium, that'll then go on the balance sheet as goodwill, and customer bills have to go up to pay for it. The premium over Disney's offer is around $13bn - and because that's all "goodwill", that's $13bn to be recovered through customer price rises, on top of probably a similar amount Disney had promised. So around $26bn to be reamed out from customers who have no say in the matter.

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Keep your hands on the f*cking wheel! New Tesla update like being taught to drive by your dad

Ledswinger
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Re: Crash Test Dummies.

The computer won't make those mistakes.

My long experience of working in and around IT watching all manner of erroneous outcomes persuades me that you are wrong.

Computers often deliver undesired outcomes, from faults in hardware, firmware, drivers, operating systems, applications or sensors. Or simply because the system design is crap. Or because they are fed corrupt or incorrect data, and process it as per the hard coded instructions. Or because the operating environment was outside the design parameters of the system.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Crash Test Dummies.

i.e. correcting your minor steering errors and stopping you from straying over. That's the point, not to defer concentration.

If I have to concentrate just as hard when the car's in autopilot, there's not really much point, is there? There's little or no physical effort in driving a mid range to premium car, the only point in automation is to enable the driver to relax. Look at cruise control - nice to have, convenient if used appropriately, but makes little difference to the mental exertion of a competent and attentive driver.

In fact, if the driver has to SUPERVISE the autopilot there's more effort, since they need to evaluate what's going on with the road and traffic, establish expectations for what the car is doing versus what they believe it should be doing, and preparing to dive and snatch control if those last two start to deviate. Which means that Tesla's much vaunted autopilot is permanently like a teenager on a fourth driving lesson - it knows the basics, but hasn't the skill or experience to be trusted, and the car's meatsack driver has to be permanently alert to the need to intervene. On a car costing around £75-150k that's deeply unimpressive, since I could be paid to have the same wearing and sometimes near death experience by buying a £12k Citroen C3 and setting up Ledswinger's School of Bad Driving.

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Ledswinger
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Re: The autopilot is not an autopilot ?

In an aircraft, the autopilot will not avoid flocks of birds, for example, the human pilot can, provided he sees them soon enough to react.

True to an extent for light aircraft that are slow and agile, with big windscreens and fewer distractions, but as you imply less so for fast or large aircraft where there isn't the time to react between sighting birds and hitting them. Indeed, United 1549 was on autopilot when it hit the birds that brought it down, and the pilots only saw the birds at the last minute (as you'd expect at around 200 mph).

But that's an interesting comparison - how good is any AV at interpreting sudden "threats" and the potential actions? Can it tell the difference between a large unpredictable and (from the drivers point of view) expendable bird, a dog, or a small child, and act accordingly? Can it balance the risks of swerving to avoid an object it may not be able to accurately identify?

The second point is from your link, and that 1549 and some of the recent AV crashes show, the initial incident is over by the time the meat sacks are ready to respond. And in the case of AF447, then meatsacks never got their act together in four and half minutes.

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Cops fined £80,000 for revealing childhood abuse victims' names

Ledswinger
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Fines do nothing but feed a voracious regulatory beast with hidden tax monies purloined from the taxpayers

ICO "fines" go to the treasury, and I doubt that many people would call the ICO "voracious" nor a "regulatory beast". In many respects, enforcement would be better if the ICO were funded from fines - they'd have more incentive to collect, and to proactively investigate.

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Ex-Rolls-Royce engineer nicked on suspicion of giving F-35 info to China

Ledswinger
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Re: There was something the Chinese didn't know already?

top of the list being an absurd faith in the one-tool-good-at-everything notion so completely discredited with F-111

And the same universal tool concept copied by Europe with the Tornado, and equally rubbish in some roles. I'm not sure why military types of each generation believe that they can combine high and low altitude performance, stealth, speed and agility, short take off, heavy weapons capability, long endurance, land & maritime capability etc all in one airframe.

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Ledswinger
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I couldn't say with any expertise, but it seems likely that the J20 fighter is somewhere around the class of the Typhoon.

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Scrapping Brit cap on nurses, doctors means more room for IT folk

Ledswinger
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Re: More job displacement, yay

It has been the policy of successive governments to run down the training of such staff in the UK (no more grants and bursaries for instance).

And making things exponentially worse, the fuckwits now expect nurses to pay for the education demanded by a near-monopsony employer, leading to a dramatic reduction in nurse education when we weren't training enough to replace those retiring anyway. AND the NHS now expect most if not all nurses to be graduates, so that there's few ways of entering the profession without a £30k slug of debt round your neck. So with a circa 30,000 nursing and midwifery vacancies, idiot government policies have caused a 30% reduction in the number of people starting relevant courses.

And the retirement rate is going to increase because of cliff edge effects in the NHS pension entitlement caused by the Agenda for Change (incidentally a gift of the last Labour government, back in 2004, along with the billions of NHS debt from Gordon Brown's PFI binge).

It's tempting to blame the current bunch of charlatans, but its pretty clear than none of the Wasters of Westminster are fit stewards of anything more taxing than a free bar. And they wouldn't be much good at that, to judge by the squandering of £14bn in foreign aid in return for nothing.

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Dinosaurs permitted to mate: But what does AT&T Time merger mean for antitrust – and you?

Ledswinger
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Re: What does it mean to me?

This is much bigger deal in the US than (say) in the UK, because many USizens don't have an effective choice of ISP.

How do they have less choice as a result of this, then? TW aren't active materially (if at all) in ISP and telco activity.

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Ledswinger
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Re: "The US approach maximises consumer welfare"

it does not necessarily follow that prices will be lower under a monopoly.

They rarely are unless the monopoly is heavily and competently regulated.

But in this case there's no new monopoly. AT&T and TW are largely in different businesses, and any local monopoly (eg on network or telco assets) already exists and would be unchanged. TW do add to existing AT&T content ownership, but not sufficient to make them any new form of monopoly in content.

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Ledswinger
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Re: "The US approach maximises consumer welfare"

in reality the US approach maximises corporate welfare

Corporate welfare maybe, but not investor welfare. The history of both companies and the sectors involved show largely negative benefits from M&A, that certainly does little for consumers, but it does even less for investors.

At least in this instance the companies are merging, which should mean little in the way of acquisition goodwill that the customers end up paying for.

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Microsoft tries cutting the Ribbon in Office UI upgrade

Ledswinger
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Re: it is not the customer's job to adapt

Supplier fella not try please customer, customer fella him bugger off, no pay money, supplier fella heap sorry.

That's the theory. However, most software vendors have long ago learned three important things:

1) users are rarely choosers in the corporate world,

2) you can put in the retail channel what you want because even retail buyers value the perceived compatibility, even if they don't like aspects of the revised product.

3) And for the recidivists, you just mutter "support ends next week, upgrade or die".

The number of lost sales to Microsoft from unpopular, poorly conceived and ill advised changes is minimal in the context of the their wider market share, and that (sadly) shows up in the fact that their balance sheet is swilling $70bn of cash and liquid assets after netting off debt.

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Tech firms, come to Blighty! Everything is brill! Brexit schmexit, Galileo schmalileo

Ledswinger
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Re: Brexit Schmexit

people asked me what Schmexit meant.

Schmexit means Schmexit. I thought everybody knew that.

But rather than demonstrating against the Tories, why didn't you demonstrate against the clueless twats of the Labour party who have kept the Conservatives in government through a string of utterly dislikeable and incompetent leaders, all with weird, incoherent policies that have made the Labour party unelectable even against the dislikeable, colourless, cloth-eared, lightweights of the Conservatives?

My sympathies are somewhere towards the right wing of the Conservative party, but I'd welcome a good, strong, electable Labour party, simply because as things stand nobody's happy, and still nobody would be happy if that bearded communist idiot were PM. The same situation applied in 2005, when a Labour party that had run out of steam and ideas was re-elected with a dead duck MP, simply because the Tories were led by the unelectable Michael Howard, a shadow cabinet largely composed of talent free nobodies, and no clear ideas or agenda. Considering the past two decades, the political mess we're in can actually be attributed more readily to the failure of opposition parties to up their game than to lacklustre governments who ideally wouldn't even be in post if the opposition were competent.

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Dixons Carphone 'fesses to mega-breach: Probes 'attempt to compromise' 5.9m payment cards

Ledswinger
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How did the ne'er-do-wells manage to gain entry in order to milk the data?

How does any director gain access to the building he works at? We should consider that the attackers were doing what they do best, finding a weakness and preying on it. As such we should consider that they might qualify as "professionals". Dixonscarphonedoghouse on the other hand were screwing up as usual, so the term "ne'er-do-wells" is probably best applied to their bungling management.

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Ledswinger
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The only way to teach him is by fining him personally.

He's got so much money any feasible fine wouldn't hurt. I say strap the pudgy faced public schoolboy into a device with his legs apart, and administer a public kick to the bollocks for each item of data lost. Obviously that's a lot of kicks, so each individual whose data was lost would have the right to place their own kick, or to "kick by proxy", nominating somebody like Johnny Wilkinson to do it for them. Mr Wilkinson's fee could be stuffed to Dunstone.

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Tesla undecimates its workforce but Elon insists everything's absolutely fine

Ledswinger
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Re: Undecimate?

undecimate - remove one in eleven (undecem)

If that means we get a one-eleventh reduction in the public deployment of the Thoughts of Chairman Musk, then this has to be a good thing. But realistically, this is the beginning of the end for Tesla. When the boss stops thinking about his vision, starts emotively criticising the critics, and comes up with ideas like this, you know its only a matter of time.

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That was quick: Seattle rushes to kill tax that would mildly inconvenience Amazon

Ledswinger
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If there's a housing crisis...

...then chances are that there's three main causes that apply to any successful city: An excess of well paid jobs relative to current housing supply, exacerbated by poor local government planning to esnure some balance between jobs, housing and transport, and social problems that cause chronic homelessness.

To be fair you can't blame Amazon as such, but introducing the tax would have been an interesting experiment in deterring the sort of jobs that push up property demand and prices, and if it didn't they'd have at least made a move on either getting more money for social housing or social care. My disappointment at the Seattle politicians for their craven surrender is mitigated by a conviction that given more money, local government only waste it unproductively.

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First A380 flown in anger to be broken up for parts

Ledswinger
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They're more than just a little overweight.

I'd also guess that the lease costs, resale value assumptions, and in-service reliability were an issue.

But there's nothing unusual about this - it is pretty normal for "mid-life" aircraft to be worth more for their engines and transferrable high value parts than as a complete unit, with the airframe being broken up for scrap when the engines and mechanicals have gone.

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Ledswinger
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Re: This underlines one more thing

Still think outside of London airports could have done with the investment

What, like the Manchester Airport second runway? Or the Birmingham runway extension that can now take the A380s nobody wants to fly there?

the A380 is a good plane with a limited use case. The smaller aircraft serve the airlines better in the current pre-post Brexit environments for flights out.

WTF has Brexit got to do with Singapore retiring some of their A380s? The issue is that the A380 (and B747) weren't economic in the era of the wide bodied long range twin motor. With half the number of powertrain parts the twin motors will be considerably more reliable. With their smaller capacity they're less at risk of flying half empty, or topped up with passengers on £5 tickets. There's a tiny number of applications where flying a small army in one aircraft make sense, but not enough for most airlines to justify the complexity and cost of an A380, and that's got jack 5hit to do with Brexit (or the bust up with Iran, or the Love-in with Nork, or any other political event).

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Low AI rollout caused by dumb, fashion-victim management – Gartner

Ledswinger
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Re: Over-hyped, over-paid and over here

Re: traffic flows: "if the whole thing was automated and orchestrated by a computer it would be free flowing all the way"

Citation needed.

All the examples I can think of for computer-improved traffic flow aren't very good adverts for the silicon brains. Since the collective intelligence of a few thousand humans would give you quite a lot of FLOPS, probably well beyond the capacity available for a computer managing a few miles of road, it would seem that computer control has to rely more on a set of robust and fairly simple algos than on AI and real time processing, and even then stands a good chance of great expense but no improvement.

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Actual control of Windows 10 updates (with a catch)... and more from Microsoft

Ledswinger
Silver badge

Re: @Dave K

Ordinary users are Microsoft's gamma testers so MS can deliver reliable s/w (at higher prices) to businesses.

Most of us are also business users (or specifiers, installers, maintainers, etc) and I've not heard anybody describe the Windows desktop estate as reliable. It's just the same as for home users - chock full of shite nobody asked for, more holes than Swiss cheese, unsafe and dysfunctional without third party add ons, and always struggling with some aspect of interoperability with another MS product.

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SAP: It’s all about cloud. Oh and blockchain, let's do that too

Ledswinger
Silver badge

Re: They forgot to mention

If you though you could avoid it by staying on-prem, that'll be another 13%.

Well, that's a fitting reward for all those companies who thought that IT wasn't their core business, and thus allowed another company to have near absolute control over their destiny. Now the customers of SAP (and Oracle, et al) find that changing anything costs a fortune, that any programme of change "requires" the services of IBM and Accenture plus a host of contractors. All of a sudden, all of those "efficiencies" in the original SAP business case melt away, and the managers are further surprised to find that it takes forever to make the most modest changes, And SAP can charge what they like because the customer businesses are so afraid of the disruption of change that they simply won't do anything about it.

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BT announces Gavin Patterson to become ex-CEO

Ledswinger
Silver badge

Re: To be fair...

To be fair......he has better hair than his fellow Pantene Mafia mate John Petter

Au contraire, Patterson has MORE hair than Petter, but he doesn't have better hair. I can't think of any big company exec with worse hair than Patterson. You can only imagine what goes on in the Patterson household bathroom each morning as he sees himself in the mirror:

"Good morning, me"

"Good morning you, you handsome, stylish dog, you! I'll bet the ladies will be after you today"

"I'm sure they will Gav, I'm sure they will"

"They don't say you look like George Clooney for nothing!"

"Of course they don't Gav! The old dog's still got it, eh?"

"Too right, Gav, you're The Man"

"And clever with it..."

"Of course old boy, you've a stellar reputation with all your former colleagues, and now you're a FTSE 100 CEO. The non-exec gravy train beckons! But before that let's get PLENTY of "product" into that crowning glory, eh?"

"Too right, handsome, I've got four jars here just for today's application"

"Well good luck today, you old dog. Don't forget to shower in Old Spice! And get the chauffeur to play the BeeGees on the way into work"

"Pippip old bean!"

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Motorola extends modular phone adventure for another year

Ledswinger
Silver badge

Re: Is anybody listening?

Is anybody listening?...We ask for:...

...a range of things that make little or no difference to sales numbers, but add to cost. Personally I'm with you, but we have to accept that the bulk of the market is not, leaving us to buy devices without, or choose from a VERY limited range that also compromises on the better features of the flagships.

My Xiaomi Redmi Note 4X does 2 & 3, but I've had to accept defeat on 1.

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Russia appears to be 'live testing' cyber attacks – Former UK spy boss Robert Hannigan

Ledswinger
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Re: Many organised cyber criminal outfits are Russian too

The Russian government is an organised (cyber) criminal outfit.

How does that differ to the governments of the US, Israel, Iran and so forth?

I suppose we can at least allow that the British government isn't, purely on the grounds that they're too stupid, disorganised and lacking in any real "cyber" skills or knowledge.

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Ledswinger
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Re: More FUD

Sure. So am I. Thought in this case things have a much simpler explanation.

The game is on! And it is the fun game of "guess the gobby, anonymous commentard". Momentarily I was going to plump for VRH, but there's a couple of style cues in there that persuade me that it definitely isn't.

Is it a breach of etiquette to try and guess who's AC'ing?

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Android users: Are you ready for the great unbundling?

Ledswinger
Silver badge

Good and we need manufacturers to stop preinstalling other bloatware like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp

See the comment above from the tastefully monikered Fred West. You and I might want manufacturers and networks to stop preloading shite, but the EU's actions are actually about freeing up these other parties to dob as much shit on handsets as they wish.

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