* Posts by ma1010

753 posts • joined 30 Nov 2012


Vodafone signs $550m deal with IBM to offload cloud biz

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"Being a spare part at IBM isn't a good place to be," said one.

My heart goes out to those affected. If it were me, I'd be spending the weekend getting the resume done and posted, and then start looking for openings. Good luck to all!

Are you sure your disc drive has stopped rotating, or are you just ignoring the messages?

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Re: I can believe it!

It's a pity, the lusers you meet when you don't have a fully charged cattle prod set to "stir-fry."

Man drives 6,000 miles to prove Uncle Sam's cellphone coverage maps are wrong – and, boy, did he manage it

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Re: I'm sure the FCC will get right on it

...and they've dealt with everything else in their in-tray.

...and Satan is ordering antifreeze and winter overcoats.

Army had 'naive' approach to Capita's £1.3bn recruiting IT contract, MPs told

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Certainly the Army was naive!

Apparently they expected to get a recruiting system that actually worked as specified. From everything I've read about the quality of Capita's work product, such a belief would be quite naive.

This July, Google will weep for there are no more worlds to banhammer: 'Bad ads' to be blocked globally

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Re: The problem is...


Exactly! Flashing, sticky, or other such annoying ads are annoying and something that would make me just close a web page immediately. But it's the CREEPY TRACKING that really got to me. I am a ham radio guy and started blocking ads years ago after I started seeing ads for ham radio gear. I know that hams are a very small portion of the population at large, so the likelihood that those ads just happened to be in my browser = 0. That brought home to me what people were getting at when they talked about tracking. I did a bit of research and installed Ghostery, which has done a good job for me for years.

IBM insists it's not deliberately axing older staff. Internal secret docs state otherwise...

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I hope IBM gets crucified

I hope these cases turn into class actions (if they aren't already) and IBM has to pay out a ton of money. ANYONE who knows anything AT ALL about employment law knows this is totally illegal and has been for many years (even here in the U.S. where we have few rights compared to workers in many other countries).

IBM has no excuse. I'd like to add I hope they fire Ginny, but when CEO's get fired, unlike working people, they generally get enough in payouts to live comfortably for life, so not much suffering for her, unlike what she and her fellow PHBs have done to IBM's older employees.

Fake 'U's! Phishing creeps use homebrew fonts as message ciphers to evade filters

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Re: html in email...

I've had a Bank of America account for many, many years. A while ago, I got a fake text message claiming to be from them. I ignored the link in the message and went to their web site, logged on and went to "Messages" which, no surprise, was empty.

I've done some basic computer security training classes, and I always tell people to VERIFY any remotely suspect message by another route: either contact the sender by another route (not clicking on any links!) and verify the message or check for messages via a known good web site.

My healthcare provider sends emails that say "you have a message." They do provide a link to click, but I always just go to the web site directly and check there for the messages.

Dark matter's such a pushover: Baby stars can shove weird stuff around dwarf galaxies

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There is one thing that might explain dark matter

Okay, everyone have the downvote button ready to go? Then begin!

I know many people think it is a scam, and it may be, but I think Brilliant Light Power merits at least a look. I'm no physicist and don't have an opinion about whether Mills' theory is right or not. However, his equipment does produce plasmas, and people with reputations to guard, such as college professors and engineers, have done measurements that show excess heat (i.e., more energy coming out than going in) coming from the reactions Mills' company produces. It's true that they have not produced a WORKING, practical energy source. But neither have fusion pioneers, and we don't go around saying that fusion is crap because of that. Engineering this kind of stuff is hard. How do you contain and extract usable energy from plasma? Don't ask me.

My point here is that Mills postulates that dark matter is actually a form of the hydrogen atom below ground state and that electron orbits can have fractional ground states. He states that the conditions for this to happen don't occur naturally on Earth, although they can in stars. His theory does explain why the sun's corona is hotter than the surface, a fact that's been known for a long time but is difficult to explain using well-understood laws of thermodynamics. It also would explain the observations in this article if, as Mills postulates, dark matter is really sub-ground-state hydrogen atoms (he calls them "hydrinos"). Of course clouds of hydrogen atoms in space are affected by thermal radiation.

I'm also well aware that Mills doesn't believe in quantum mechanics, which I do, but I think the universe may just be more complex and tricky than we understand today. There may be room for hydrinos AND quantum mechanics. I know many physicists reject Mills' work because it doesn't agree with their preconceived notions. And Mills may be wrong, or even a charlatan, but I'd like to see more REAL physicists take a close, unbiased look at what he's doing and study his experiments. Either unmask the fraud and show how he does his tricks, or admit something interesting and possibly VERY beneficial to humankind is going on.

Insiders! The good news: Windows 10 Sandbox is here for testing. Bad news: Microsoft has already broken it

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Freudian reading

When the article said "Microsoft dropped a fresh..." my early-morning mind was expecting to read "grogan." But from the rest of the article, it looks like my morning-addled subconscious was right.

And yes, MS, certainly one round of crowd-sourced "testing" is all you need with Win X, given it's recent stellar record. One wonders what they're smoking (or, given its location, probably vaping) these days.

It's 2019, the year Blade Runner takes place: I can has flying cars?

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Re: measure the subject's empathy response to questions

True story. Many years ago, my wife and her then-husband both applied for a job where you had to take a polygraph. She failed the polygraph because she was extremely nervous, although she was telling the truth. Her ex-husband, who was a con man by nature, passed the polygraph just fine, lying all the way.

However, the manager hired her and not the ex-husband because he realized who was trustworthy, despite what the machine said.

Heard the one where the boss calls in an Oracle consultant who couldn't fix the database?

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The Force is strong with this one


While I was working away, he suddenly interjected, 'OK, well now it definitely needs to be replaced, it's on fire. I'll call you back'."

Well done! A result that would gladden the BOFH or PFY, and you did it remotely on your FIRST EVER HELLDESK CALL! You, sir, are a true BOFH, and I salute you. Have a virtual pint on me.

Racing at the speed of light, Sage superhero bursts through the door...

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Thumb Up

Re: Not me...


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Re: Not me...

No such luck, not from those buggers. They're out of business now, so I figure she got revenge.

ma1010 Silver badge

Not me...

...but my wife. She worked for a company that required women to wear skirts and nylons (yeah, this was a while ago). Then they were doing a big project that involved getting a lot of documents from the archive. The archive was a set of boxes on and under tables (on the floor) in the sort of dark, dusty and dingy basement room where people who annoy the BOFH might disappear.

She wound up having to crawl, in a dress and nylons, on the floor for hours each day for several days pulling documents from the archive boxes. Sore knees, torn nylons and revealing far more of herself than she had any desire to reveal to co-workers. She was not in a happy mood when she got home during that project. I thought it wise to take her out to dinner most nights until that was over.

Error pop-up? Don't worry, let's just get this migration done... BTW it's my day off tomorrow

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It definitely happens

Shortly after I started work for a medium-sized company as their "IT guy," our web site and email went down. If you guessed it was the company domain name had expired, you're right.

Although somewhat a lame excuse, I really hadn't been there long enough to start looking into all the infrastructure details[1], and my predecessor had helpfully set all the contact information on the domain to his own company email account, which he deleted before he left, so nobody got any warnings. At least it was an easy fix. I reset the contact info to go to both myself and my boss, the controller.

[1] It took me several days just to clean up my new work computer. It was good hardware, but my predecessor had a porn collection to rival the PFY's, categorized and all (including "BESTIALITY"). He also had a browser hijacker and other crap on there. I couldn't just wipe and re-install the computer because they didn't have the install CDs for all the software(!) It took me a couple of days just to get that computer sorted so I could start looking into the many other issues.

Better get cramming... Xamarin University due to close early next year

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Well, it IS Microsoft

We can all hope that something as good as this will stay alive after MS absorbs it, but I'm not overly confident. Look at what MS did to Skype, Nokia and Windows 7.

Telcos enlist Google, Amazon to help protect Europe's data from Big Tech

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In other news...

Farmer hires foxes to guard henhouse

"And they work so cheap, too!" he says.

IBM is trying to throttle my age-discrimination lawsuit – axed ace cloud salesman

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Re: Not quite

As often as not (probably more often) the side required to produce the information knows exactly what the other side is looking for, exactly what would help the other side make their case, and proceeds to bury it under as many tons of irrelevant crap as they possibly can in the hope the other side won't ever mange to find the "smoking gun memo."

Sadly, this is standard legal tactics.

College PRIMOS prankster wreaks havoc with sysadmin manuals

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Re: Security through hilarity

When I give a talk about email security, I like to use the following example:

"You may think your email password isn't all that big a deal, because you don't send anything really sensitive via email. How about I log on as you and send some death threats to president@whitehouse.gov, then pick up some popcorn and park down the street from your house and wait for the show to start?"

That tends to get them thinking.

BOFH: State of a job, eh? Roll the Endless Requests for Further Information protocol

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True to life

My wife works for the State of California (I won't say which department, for obvious reasons), and their IT people follow Simon's "problem resolution" process exactly. They specialize in closing tickets without actually doing anything at all toward fixing the problem. So they start another ticket, lather, rinse, repeat.

From other commentards, it seems that Blighty has similar issues, so apparently the BOFH and the PFY are training helldesk people on both sides of the Pond.

Wow, what a lovely early Christmas present for Australians: A crypto-busting super-snoop law passes just in time

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In other news...

Looking to next year's session, Australian PMs moot new laws to repeal the law of gravity and make both pi and e equal to 3.0.

If you ever felt like you needed to carry 4TB of data around, Toshiba's got you covered

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Re: This has been available for a while

I have a 6TB My Book (the larger USB drive) that works very well. Then I tried one of their newer 8 TB My Book drives, and it would NOT work with rsynch at all - it hung up every time. Thinking it was a bad drive, Amazon sent me a replacement that had the same, exact problem. I ended up returning it, too.

Wound up with a Seagate 8TB USB (it's branded La Cie), and it works perfectly with rsynch and Clonezilla.

Surface Book 2 afflicted by mystery Blue Screen Of Death errors

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El Reg said it perfectly

Unless, of course, shoddy updates borking hardware is the new normal.

Anybody who reads El Reg at all knows perfectly that shoddy updates is very clearly the new normal from MS. Maybe someday they'll get a clue, but not so far, sadly.

See this, Google? Microsoft happy to take a half-billion in sweet, sweet US military money to 'increase lethality'

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Re: Weapon of Mass Deletion

Microsoft could crash selected country's economies by wiping all Windows 10 installations pushing out another Windows 10 update like the recent ones

There, FTFY

OneDrive is broken: Microsoft's cloudy storage drops from the sky for EU users

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Paris Hilton

Re: So now you know why...

...I always said that I didn't trust cloud technology like this. The problem is the single point of failure; Microsoft.

MS is not merely a single point of failure, it's a single point of so many failures these days! I remember when they used to make good stuff. I was amazed at MS Office when it first came out. I was an evangelist for Windows and MS Office back in those days.

But now I use Linux and avoid MS as much as possible. MS seems to be the death of anything it touches nowadays. Their cloud services seem to be down more and more. Their untested, buggy OS is pretty much total crap, and why, in the name of $DEITY do they insist on a short life cycle which seems to be just shoving out more bugs faster than what they used to do. They seem to destroy whatever they touch - look at Nokia and Skype. Don't know what happened internally there, but nowadays they seem to be driving off a cliff.

Maybe if they'd fire their current leadership and go back to what they used to do - produce stuff that worked - they'd be useful again.

Paris because I don't understand why MS seems to be set on committing suicide.

'Massage parlour' location looks like Amazon stealth-testing secret new wireless network

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Re: "Total Body Stretch"

Hairdressers unsettle me for the same reason.

Not to mention telephone sanitizers!

CubeSat buddies, like those sent to track Mars InSight landing, can be used in future missions

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...or Earth might not be an ideal spot.

A commonly held opinion among the other residents of the Western Spiral Arm, and probably true. But at least it's mostly harmless.

GTA gamer cuffed, charged after PS4 live mic allegedly overheard him raping teen girl

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Already out on bail for rape

This time, maybe no bail?

Angry Googlers demand bosses pull the wings off 'Dragonfly' censored Chinese search engine

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Google announces lay-offs

Today Google announced that they are laying off 139 employees due to "economic conditions." These employees, unlike Google executives guilty of sexual harassment, will receive no special payout.

Bedroom design outfit slapped with £160k fine for 1.6 million spam calls

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Re: Not likely

They do that in the US all the time, use the "Do Not Call" list as a to-call list. Unfortunately, there are no real penalties for doing that here unless you do it on a really massive basis, in which case there is a tiny chance of getting fined - about the same chance one normally has of getting hit by a meteorite while crossing the street.

The plethora of "marketing" calls flooding the phone system has pretty much made phones useless for lots of people - I never answer my landline phone because it's always crap.

There isn't anything the government can really do until they redesign the phone system to where spoofing numbers isn't child's play since we get lots of crap calls from outside the law's jurisdiction and have no way to screen them since they spoof local numbers.

Microsoft reveals terrible trio of bugs that knocked out Azure, Office 362.5 multi-factor auth logins for 14 hours

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Just goes to show that agile is crap

What caused this? Lack of TESTING. But since MS fired their testers and decided that their users are now the testers - welcome to the world of crapware and constant outages.

As to doing emergency communications with email, download LibreOffice and a decent email client. Then subscribe to two different paid-for services (like Fastmail) and set up all the clients to check both as that way you eliminate THAT single point of failure. Likely cheaper than MS 3.625 times ten to the second power (and falllllling) and would certainly work.

Consultant misreads advice, ends up on a 200km journey to the Exchange expert

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Steps out of order

Obviously, the article should have had the bit about "Only do this is you have only one Exchange server" at the beginning.

This reminds me of the old joke about the guys disarming a bomb with one guy reading the instructions to the other.

"Unscrew the cover!" "Okay, got it unscrewed."

"Cut the red wire!" "All right, I've cut the red wire. What next?"

"But first, cut the blue wire..."

------------------------------> See Icon

Net neutrality is heading to the courts (again): So will the current rules stand or be overturned (again)?

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Yes, this will happen

...Congress create a new set of laws that will allow the United States to thrive for the next couple of decades without being dragged down by regulatory arguments.

This will happen the same day a flock of pigs go singing, flapping their wings as they fly past my window.

1,700 lucky Brit kids to visit Apple Stores for 'Year of Engineering'

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Paris Hilton


"give young people the unique chance to meet and work with the creatives behind its ground-breaking innovations".

So that would be the folks who work in their retail stores? Not to disparage retail workers in any way, but if they are the "creatives behind its ground-breaking innovations," what do all those engineers at Apple headquarters in Cupertino do, then?

Oracle sued by app sales rep: I made tens of millions for Larry, then fired for being neither young nor male – claim

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Re: We only have her word for it

Companies don't generally fire people who are making them money just because they're A) A women or B) old. That would be corporate suicide.

Ah, but corporations do commit suicide all the time, don't they? I believe that they have a lifecycle. Small startup that's quality and service oriented. Then they start to grow and tend to lose focus a bit. Then they get big and powerful, then full of hubris and start running things by whim, having internal warfare and/or invent other idiotic policies and practices which eventually kill them. Then they start to shrink with lots of redundancies and, often, even sillier policies and either sell out or turn into patent trolls. IBM comes to mind.

From everything I've heard about them, Oracle is a company that will shaft its customers and employees. This may or may not be true, but I've heard it enough that I would certainly be unlikely to contract with them. Considering the insanity of what's been happening with the quality of Windows X, MS appears to be heading down "Suicide Alley," too. It's all too common, I'm afraid.

LastPass? More like lost pass. Or where the fsck has it gone pass. Five-hour outage drives netizens bonkers

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Re: Keepass

Copying the file is a minor nuisance, but beats having my "cloud" account disappear for however long the provider decides to be TITSUP.

Also, I'm an odd duck and don't use my phone a great deal - mainly just look at email or make a call. I rarely use it on my phone, but on occasion it's handy.

ma1010 Silver badge


I use Keepass which runs on Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and, I think, BSD. My passwords are available on my Windows work computer, my Linux home computer, my Android phone and a USB key which I use to synchronize the different machines - and the synchronization works perfectly. (I don't actually synchronize the phone - for that I copy the password file from one of the computers onto the phone.)

I've used this for years without any problems. I have my passwords with me all the time, without a cloud in sight.

Washington Post offers invalid cookie consent under EU rules – ICO

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Well, how about litigation?

Paging Max Schrems, or someone else who can and will file such a lawsuit. Since WP does business in the EU, they either need to comply with the law there or cease doing business there, as far as I understand the GDPR. And since they've been ignoring the GDPR and doing business in the EU, they are subject to some serious fines, right?

A lawsuit of this sort would be, I think, a good thing, as the law needs to be tested in court and clarified as to how it will work in the real world.

Trump in Spaaaaaaace: Washington DC battles over who gets to decide the rules of trillion-dollar new industry

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The FCC - who controls space?

Well, if you ask Ajit Pai, I'm sure the answer would be

  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • Charter Communications
  • any other similar organization that has him on their payroll

5.. 4.. 3.. 2.. 1... Runty-birds are go: 12,000+ internet-beaming mini-satellites OK'd by USA

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Traffic jam?

It sounds to me like a serious potential problem, but I don't know enough to have an informed opinion as to whether it would work or not.

In any event, kudos to the author for the Zappa reference!

John McAfee is 'liable' for 2012 death of Belize neighbour, rules court

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It makes sense

dies in Belize and gets sued in USA? Im not a legal expert, is that normal?

Lots of things can allow a court to have proper venue, irrespective of where the cause of the suit arose. For example, say you and I signed a contract in Colorado for me to do some work for you in Texas, and I live in California. If you felt I'd defaulted, and you wanted to sue me, you could sue me in any of those three states on the grounds of:

1) Contract entered into there (Colorado)

2) Contract was to be performed there (Texas)

3) Defendant resides there (California)

Hands up who isn't p!*$ed off about Amazon's new HQ in New York and Virginia?

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The New Feudalism

The 20th century, for all its horrors of war was the century of the common person. Workers won rights and actually won a living wage and a chance to have a good life. The self-styled elite have been fighting back and winning as we see life becoming harder and harder for average people while a small class of "one percenters" get richer and richer. Life today is a lot harder for the young just starting out than it was when I were a nipper - I'm glad I'm old. Back then we didn't have anything like the homeless population we have today. Back then, if you worked even a McJob, you could afford to rent a cheap apartment. Nowadays, some of the homeless work, but can't afford to rent anywhere to live. Remember when Seattle tried to put in a small tax on large businesses to help alleviate their homeless problem - and oh how did Amazon and Micro$oft scream about it so they rescinded it. After all, those multi billion dollar companies can't afford to pay any tax. Oh, dear me, no.

I applaud those few in government who haven 't been bought out and are trying to push back against the Amazons and other corporate giants who want to restore feudalism and make the common people over into their serfs. It can be stopped. People need the same will they had back when labor unions were first getting started. We need to fight against this "all for the one percent" philosophy that's taking over not only America but much of the world. The Amazons, Wall-Marts and other such companies need unions to help their employees get a living wage and reasonable working conditions and end the practice of these companies hiring so many of their staff on a part-time basis so as to avoid paying benefits. And the governments need to help that happen and to see to it that these corporations pay their fair share of tax instead of getting "incentives" that shortchange the government and the people just so the one percenters like Bezos can bank a few extra tens of millions. I applaud the EU's efforts to get the Googles to pay up and wish it would happen here.

Sorry for the rant, but what's going on these days really pisses me off. I don't mind corporations making profits, but they don't need to rake in all these billions, avoid paying any tax and crush their workers into poverty. There needs to be a balance, but it's getting more and more unbalanced nowadays.


Russia: We did not hack the US Democrats. But if we did, we're immune from prosecution... lmao

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Paris Hilton

Wikileaks and Trump?

This is hilarious. Yeah, let's sue Russia! And then what? Get a court order for them to Cease and Desist whatever they're doing? Or maybe a money judgement? Pay up, Putin! (Yeah, I'd be holding my breath.)

I wish the Allies had thought of this winning strategy during WW II. Stalin could have just SUED Hitler, won a judgement against him for invading Russia, and the Wehrmacht would have immediately left Russia with their tails between their legs while Hitler wrote out a check for damages. Right? Would have saved countless lives lost during all that unnecessary fighting. Not to mention Blighty could have gotten a cease and desist order about those V1s and V2s and made those stop, and then could have France sued Hitler, too, and been free of Germans without all that D-Day nonsense. Why didn't Churchhill et al. try such a brilliant approach back then, I wonder?

And if Assange had some secret deal with Trump to make the DNC look bad, why is he still cowering in London, saying he's fearful some U.S. Men in Black will whisk him off to Gitmo or some such place the moment he puts his nose outside the consulate?

Microsoft lobs Windows 10, Server Oct 2018 update at world (minus file-nuking 'feature') after actually doing some testing

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Big Brother

What is this "Past" of which you speak?

Dear El Reg:

Don't make us send the boys from the Ministry of Love over to visit.

Repeat after me: The current update is the only update MS issued this Fall.

Oceania is at war with Eastasia. Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia. Right?

-- Your Friend, "Big"

30 spies dead after Iran cracked CIA comms network with, er, Google search – new claim

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You're FIRED!

Of course Reid was fired. He realized the bosses were doing something stupid and told them they shouldn't do what they were doing.

Worst of all for him, events proved he was absolutely RIGHT while they were wrong, which is one totally unforgivable sin to a PHB. He simply had to be punished.

Dot-com web addresses prices to swell, thanks to sweetheart deal between Uncle Sam, Verisign

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Yes, WE lose

The only people that lose out are the millions of consumers and businesses that will have to pay...

Isn't that kind the way it's been, pretty consistently, with everything the current government does? Our government and big corporations are consistently working together to screw us until there's nothing left except the feudal lords and the serfs. Welcome to the 21st century!

In memoriam: See you in Valhalla, Skype Classic. Version 8 can never replace you

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A new graveyard?

I remember when Novell and Corel used to be the places software went to die. In more recent years, it looks like Microsoft is becoming the new software (and even hardware, considering Nokia) graveyard.

Have a great product you want destroyed? Sell it to MS. They'll take care of it for you.

US Republicans bash UK for tech tax plan

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Just Another Corporate Mouthpiece

Thus speaks another of the many corporate mouthpieces that proliferate our government these days.

These bastards are traitors to the people of their own country. Those big corporations don't pay much in the way of taxes HERE, much less anywhere else. Not paying tax means they have LOTS of extra money left around to buy Congress and the rest of the government apparatus, and they do. Anyone who doubts this just needs to look at Ajit Pai, who doesn't even bother to hide the fact that he's a hollow sock puppet of Big Telco and Cable. The rest of them are just a bit more subtle (not much).

And it's not all Republicans - they own plenty of Democrats, too. It doesn't really matter which of the two parties is in power as they're both pretty much bought and paid for. There are exceptions, but they're too few to do any good.

Haha, good times: Larry Ellison regales noobs about when Oracle staff almost didn't get paid

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Getting paid

...about when Oracle staff almost didn't get paid.

So something like what they do with some of their salespeople nowadays?

Unsure why you can't log into Office 365? So is Microsoft

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Re: Incomprehensible complexity


Your description (and very true it is) reminds me of the story "The Machine Stops" by E.M. Forster.

And it makes me wonder about the future. What will our grandchildren do when the "Mending Apparatus" itself breaks?


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