* Posts by Graham Marsden

6927 posts • joined 19 Jan 2007

SCRAP the TELLY TAX? Ancient BBC Time Lords mull Beeb's future

Graham Marsden

@Neil Barnes - Re: TV a necessity?

People went to the music hall and then the movies and watched News Reels.

Graham Marsden

Re: @M Gale - Unfair Tax?

M Gale - *NOBODY* pays "Road Tax" and haven't done since just after WWII, you are taxed on your ownership of a motor vehicle but you don't get a discount because "I don't use that sort of road, therefore I won't pay for it."

I'll spell out what this has to with the Goggle box: It's just like someone saying "I don't watch the BBC therefore I shouldn't have to pay for it." Is that clear now?

(Oh and BTW, if you ride a motorbike, which does not contribute to congestion and causes less damage to a road than a small car, you *still* have to pay VED, even though its capacity is less than those cars which are exempted from VED.)

Graham Marsden

@M Gale - Re: Unfair Tax?

> Oh lovely. I don't want the BBC. Can I watch Channel 4? ITV? Sky? Anything?

> Guess not, then.

Right, so if I only ride a bicycle, can I withold the part of my taxes which go to pay for motorways because I don't use them?

Graham Marsden

And who would produce...

... documentaries like Michael Moseley comes up with? Pain, Pus and Poison? Eww! Nobody wants to watch that!

Or what about Danny Baker's Rockin' Decades? A bunch of people sat around a table nattering about music? Too boring (the fact that the guy has forgotten more about music than most people know seems to be irrelevant).

And The Sky at Night would get the axe because it has no mass-market appeal.

I'll leave the last word(s) to Mitch Benn... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3q2iZuU5WM

Graham Marsden
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Re: fund it from general taxation

Great, and leave it it *WIDE OPEN* to government meddling and BS austerity because it's not "paying its way" and "we're all in this together"...

Graham Marsden

@Graham Dawson - Re: Leave it out

"avoidance (entirely legal)"

But not necessarily entirely ethical...

'The Mystery of the Martian Doughnut' solved by NASA sleuths

Graham Marsden

@Phil O'Sophical

African or...

... sorry, wrong punchline.

US Senate bill would mandate 'kill switch' on all smartphones

Graham Marsden
Big Brother

Re: The other shoe drops...

As I said in the last El Reg article on this: The system is fine as long as *we*, the public have control over the "brick code" and decide when it's used.

If the State gets their hands on it, however...

'Please don't make me spend more time with my family...'

Graham Marsden


... BINGO!

Facebook KICKS OUT ad stalkers for BREACHING data rules

Graham Marsden

Pots and kettles...

... come to mind, bitch!

Bad luck, n00bs: Mozilla to splurge ADS inside empty Firefox tiles

Graham Marsden

Re: @Fibbles - WTF is "tiles"?

"this means that some of my most visited sites are buried 3 levels deep in the bookmarks menu"

Erm, are you aware that the Firefox Bookmarks tab has a "Most Visited" section...?

Graham Marsden

@Fibbles - Re: WTF is "tiles"?

Perhaps you should re-organise your bookmarks a bit more coherently, then?

Graham Marsden
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Re: WTF is "tiles"?

They're what disappear if you open a new tab and click on the faint grey 3 x 3 block in the top right hand corner so you never see them again...

GPs slam NHS England for poor publicity of data grab plan

Graham Marsden

@Smarty Pants - Re: Not received the leaflet

I suggest you read the link I posted above: This data is *NOT ANONYMISED*!

Graham Marsden
Big Brother

The first I knew about it...

... was when I read this document that I got this document forwarded to me:


I thought I'd done enough by opting out of the Summary Care Record and similar nonsense, but this is something completely different and I'd urge everyone to opt out ASAP because this data doesn't even make an attempt at the fig leaf of being "anonymised" and you'll be giving your information to Cameron's Cronies in perpetuity for them to use in any commercial way they want!

China's censors censor press censorship report

Graham Marsden

Same to...

... you Europeans!

(Copyright Benny Hill ;-) )

Ganymede map helps reveal satellite's secrets

Graham Marsden

"this truly unique moon"

As opposed to what? An only slightly unique moon...?

Dr Hurricane unleashes FUSION POWER at Livermore nuke lab

Graham Marsden


... does he have an assistant called Cyclone Boy?

OK, Mr. President, those cybersecurity guidelines you ordered are HERE

Graham Marsden
Black Helicopters

@skelband - Do the guidelines mention how to protect yourself from the NSA?

Yes, but they were written by the NSA...

FBI offers $10,000 bounty for arrest of laser-wielding idiots

Graham Marsden
Thumb Down

@Rule of Thumb - Re: Sounds a bit desperate?

"I'll bet their money would be better spent exchanging laser pointers for $10 McDonald's coupons."

Great, so they'll buy a cheap laser pointer for a buck or two and swap it for a coupon that's worth five times the value and then buy another pointer...

Graham Marsden

No problem...

... a few drones, a Hellfire missile or two with "home on laser" capability...

Credit card of PayPal PRESIDENT cloned by UK crooks

Graham Marsden

And of course...

... in the case of all those '"tons" of fraudulent transactions', the card issuer immediately snatched the money back from the retailers and gave it back to him before actually *checking* with the retailer to see if they were fraudulent in the first place...

... Oh, no, hang on, that's what PayPal does, isn't it?

One good thing from the Flappy Birds crapp flap: It's a handy 'tech' media rating system

Graham Marsden
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"Flappy Bird scammers pounce on unsuspecting users

"Scam artists seeking to capitalise on the demise of popular mobile game Flappy Bird have released harmful clones.

"Apps that appeared to be identical to the original have been designed to trick users into sending premium rate text messages."


NYPD dons Google tech specs: Part man. Part machine. All Glasshole

Graham Marsden

@Sir Runcible Spoon - Re: Coming soon, privacy masks

Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994

60AA Powers to require removal of disguises


(a)an authorisation under section 60 is for the time being in force in relation to any locality for any period, or

(b)an authorisation under subsection (3) that the powers conferred by subsection (2) shall be exercisable at any place in a locality is in force for any period,

those powers shall be exercisable at any place in that locality at any time in that period.

(2)This subsection confers power on any constable in uniform—

(a)to require any person to remove any item which the constable reasonably believes that person is wearing wholly or mainly for the purpose of concealing his identity;

(b)to seize any item which the constable reasonably believes any person intends to wear wholly or mainly for that purpose.

Graham Marsden
Big Brother

Re: Coming soon, privacy masks

Coming soon: Laws to prohibit you from disguising or concealing your face...

... oh, hang on, they're already here...

Mozilla takes a page from Google with sync-friendly Firefox Accounts

Graham Marsden

"Mozilla's browser moves closer to offering...

"...what Google has delivered with Chrome for years."

What, offering all your data to them so they can target adverts at you...?

Renault unveils mini-SUV equipped with a QUADCOPTER DRONE

Graham Marsden

What a great idea...

... nothing can go wrong... go wrong... go wrong...

California takes a shot at mobile 'killswitch' mandate

Graham Marsden
Big Brother

But who has control...?

This is a great idea *in principle*, but it also has the potential to be abused as a tool of repression.

Already we've seen totalitarian regimes shutting down phone service in areas where people are protesting (or even sending messages saying "you're in a protest, we know who you are!") so now imagine that they can remotely brick any phones they want.

The only safe (for us) way for this to work is that the "brick" code is owned and stored by the customer, not by the phone company so I can call them and say "My phone has been stolen, the brick code is 'Correct Horse Battery Staple', please shut it down."

15,000 London coppers to receive new crime-fighting tool: an iPad

Graham Marsden

Re: look what happened when they got smartphones

The "Downing Street police porn arrests" story mentions the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (sec 63-67) which is the "Extreme Pornography" section.

It will be interesting to see what (if anything!) is done if they are shown to have possessed extreme porn...

Jean Michel Jarre: Je voudrais un MUSIC TAX sur VOTRE MOBE

Graham Marsden

@Sandtitz - Re: Can I get a refund...

I find it ironic that you claim I am using a Straw Man argument by using a Straw Man argument!

(Hint - You don't need a driving licence to buy a car...)

Graham Marsden

Can I get a refund...

... for all these vinyl albums and cassette tapes I have here and which I can't play any more?

(Ok, yes, I can get technology to digitise them but why should I have to pay for that to be able to use them in a different format when I've already paid for them once?)

Hate keeping your systems updated and secure? So does Uncle Sam

Graham Marsden

"report has cast doubt on the ability...

"...of many of the US's largest government agencies to properly secure and maintain their systems"

*cough* Gary McKinnon *cough*

Virgin Media's flaky broadband network turns Bolton off

Graham Marsden

"When calling tech support they do not acknowledge an issue...

"... usually claiming the fault is with [the] customer-owned router."

This seems to be Virgin "Support's" default position and they'll try to get you to book a technician to come round in a couple of days and tell you that, no, it's a fault with their BB Network...

Nudge Unit flies into Nesta's arms: Is the hype justified?

Graham Marsden

"why politicians often appear to think we're stupid"

No, it's because they *know* that the majority of people are either too lazy to actually *do* something about the crap that our lords and masters come up with or are so cynical about the whole political process that they realise that it really doesn't matter what we try and do, the politicians are going to do it anyway in their usual "completely divorced from the real world" manner.

Oi, Android devs! Facebook wants your apps to be more secure

Graham Marsden

@Mike Green - Re: Security? How about letting US have a choice...

"One of the more useful applications of QR codes is the ability to store contact info."

Ok, fair enough, that was an application I'd not considered.

But why can't (or isn't) such a thing be done on a case-by-case basis: "This application needs your permission to write to your Contacts - Allow/ Disallow/ Allow Permanently"?

I'd be happier with a system like that rather than one that demands over-arching permissions as a condition for installation.

Graham Marsden

Security? How about letting US have a choice...

I just tried to download a QR reader for my Moto-G. For some reason it said it needed access to my Contacts list!


Until *WE* get the choice of what data and personal information gets passed to Apps and the ability to say "You can have X and Y, but not Z" then there is *NO* real security.

Need some college cash? Google offers $80K for students' doodles

Graham Marsden

"The competition is limited to students in the US"


Meanwhile that prize could create a whole bloody *school* in some parts of the world...

Google views, reviews YouTube viewers' views with view to killing off spam shams

Graham Marsden



Google will dodge EU MONSTER FINES by 'promoting' rival search services

Graham Marsden

To the pedantic hair-splitters:

"In the UK a firm is said to have monopoly power if it has more than 25% of the market share. For example, Tesco @30% market share or Google 90% of search engine traffic."



Google bit barge ordered to set sail for safe waters

Graham Marsden

If only...

... there was some sort of resource where they could look up this sort of information...

Devs: We'll bury Candy Crush King under HEAPS of candy apps

Graham Marsden

What about...

... iCandy?

Nominet goes titsup after update to WHOIS tool

Graham Marsden


"Annoyance or distress at having failed or been humiliated."

Why were the customers annoyed or distressed? It wasn't them who had failed or been humiliated.

Boffins demo re-usable paper and waterjet printers

Graham Marsden

"Most of what gets spat out of office printers is...

"...glanced at once (if at all) at the start of a boring meeting and then ignored until it's consigned to the recycling."


Hello Moto: Lenovo grabs Motorola biz for $3bn. But Google's KEEPING the patents

Graham Marsden
Thumb Up

@Vociferous - Re: Hmmm... Should probably order that Moto G I've been thinking about.

It's worth it, I've recently got one and it's a very good budget smart phone.

Stephen Fry rewrites computer history again: This time it's serious

Graham Marsden

What a wonderfully smug attitude.

... whose? I'll leave you to answer that for yourself...

Prince sues 22 music file-sharers for ONE MEEELLION dollars each

Graham Marsden

To quote from "I'm Sorry, I Haven't a Clue"...

The artist formerly known as Prince

On stage would posture and mince.

Then for a giggle

He changed his name to a squiggle

And hasn't been heard from since!

Google patents ROBO-TAXIS to ferry punters into advertiser's shops, restaurants, etc for free

Graham Marsden

Ok, cab, take me to X shop...

... Oh you don't want to go there, Y shop is paying us more to get you to go there instead...

Tunguska object came from Mars say Russian boffins

Graham Marsden

And slowly, and surely drew their plans against us...

"...What do you mean you mixed up tifanary measurements and qatotery measurements...?"

Google bus protests are Kristallnacht against the rich – tech VC legend

Graham Marsden

@AC - Re: Class War UK

"In the UK politics is the new Class war with the Labour Party Demonising anyone who is successful."

Thank you for those words from the Tory Party spokesman who went on to demonise anyone who is unemployed by implicitly characterising them as not "Hard Working" and not "Honest" and suggesting that anyone on benefits is a workshy scrounger and parasite...

Fancy a little kinky sex? GCHQ+NSA will know - thanks to Angry Birds

Graham Marsden
Big Brother

So, of course...

... we're going to get full control over what data the Apps we install actually gets access to, aren't we?

"Our pissy little game needs access to your e-mail, your location, your contacts list, your photographs, your fingerprints, your blood group..."


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