* Posts by AIBailey

225 posts • joined 29 Jul 2014


Hey, UK.gov: If you truly spunked £45k on 1,300 Brexit deal print-outs, you're absolute mugs


Out by over £2500

Has nobody heard of duplex printing?

Each report should only take 300 sheets of paper, halving the overall paper costs.

Disk drives suck less than they did a couple of years ago. Which is nice


I've only ever had one HDD fail, a WD 850MB, back in the late 90's.

So overall they've all been pretty reliable from my point of view, however I still have a tendency to avoid WD as a result of that single failure.

Icon - because it did.

We did Nazi see this coming... Internet will welcome Earth's newest nation with, sigh, a brand new .SS TLD


For an annoying email address, have you thought about registering a atdotcom.com domain?

AC@atdotcom.com? Try giving that address out over the phone!

Core blimey... When is an AMD CPU core not a CPU core? It's now up to a jury of 12 to decide


Re: "up to a jury of 12 to decide"

Sounds like the evidence for the prosecution was a little Flake-y,.

(I wonder if the detective on the case looked like Magnum? That would have been Fab)

Court orders moribund ZX Spectrum reboot firm's directors to stump up £38k legal costs bill


Re: So what are the chances

Some of the Directors (Levy and Martin) might have a history of telling a number of porkies regarding the progress and status of the devices.



Re: Anyone?

Apple endorsement? No problem.

Just make sure you only print the logo on paper and fix it with tape, just in case they change their minds.


Re: "...Current And Former Directors Owe £38,000..."

Current directors are Andrews, Smith and Levy.

Unless you ask Levy, in which case he's still claiming he's the only one left, as he keeps typing to remove Andrews and Smith from the record still and refuses to acknowledge them.

The current directors that owe money statement refers only to Levy

The former directors referenced in this instance are Martin (potentially illegally added as a director in the first place) and Mrsic-Flogel.

Clone your own Prince Phil, says eBay seller hawking debris left over from royal car crash


Re: The school I went to had loads of Bastards...

True. I'll file that one away to use later.

Dear humans, We thought it was time we looked through YOUR source code. We found a mystery ancestor. Signed, the computers


Re: Maybe it was...

From the BBC:

"Prince Philip, 97, was unhurt in the crash on the A149, in which his Land Rover Freelander landed on its side after a collision with a Kia."

Of course, itzman posting to spread inaccurate information is just what I'd expect of a servant of the lizard overlords.


Re: Maybe it was...

If there were lizard people living amongst us, we'd have noticed by now as they'd leave clues.

They'd live to a ripe old age, at least 97 years old.

And they'd appear to be bulletproof, for example walking unscathed after a car accident, say rolling a Freelander..

Hold on.....

Mine's the one with David Icke's books in the pocket.

Hubble 'scope camera breaks down amid US govt shutdown, forcing boffins to fix it for free


Re: How many Shuttles could have been kept operative..

yeah about Mexico paying for the wall - indirectly, it's already started.

Unfortunately, despite Trump now trying to claim that he meant the payments would come from indirect means, one of his 2016 campaign points stated that Mexico would pay for the wall directly.




Re: How many Shuttles could have been kept operative..

Why are you blaming Trump for Obama's decision to pull the plug on the Shuttle Program ?

The decision to end the Shuttle programme was taken by George W Bush in 2004, not Obama. To extend the working life of the orbiters would have required dismantling and rebuilding from the ground up and re certifying, and this was prohibitively expensive. The plan was that the Shuttle would be used to complete construction of the ISS and then would be retired.

Obama actually extended the life of the Shuttle programme and authorised two additional missions.

Feeling a bit gassy? Toshiba floats 16TB helium whopper


Re: Why not increase the platter size and/or the height of the enclosure?

Bigger diameter platters mean more distance for the head to travel across the disk surface, which in turn translates to longer seek times. You've also got the problem of vibration and noise being potentially greater for a larger platter size, so physically bigger drives have tended to spin more slowly, meaning a lower data transfer rate. You could try and mitigate the transfer speed problems by packing more sectors per revolution, but again your seek times go down as you wait for the necessary information to be underneath the head.

The last time I recall a company trying the strategy of larger, cheaper drives was Quantum, with their Bigfoot range in the '90s, however I don't recall them being particularly successful.

Houston, we've had a problem: NASA fears internal server hacked, staff personal info swiped by miscreants


Re: Space Command and all branches of the military.

You missed out a Space Air Force.

Happy Christmas! Bloodhound SSC refuelled by Yorkshire business chap


Fantastic news. Whilst the Bloodhound project doesn't necessarily promise to push many boundaries of scientific or engineering research, sometimes you just want to see someone strap a bloody great rocket engine to a rolling chassis and find out what happens.

Virgin Galactic test flight reaches space for the first time, lugging NASA cargo in place of tourists


The spacecraft (for that is what it now is) hit Mach 2.9 and reached 271,268ft (about 82.7km) above the Earth

Did you read the whole article?

Ecuador says 'yes' to Assange 'freedom' deal, but Julian says 'nyet'


Re: Inside for 6 and a half years?

Of course not he's not eating Pot Noodles, he's to busy munching on the excessive pyramids of Ferrero Rocher.

Oz opposition folds, agrees to give Australians coal in their stockings this Christmas


Lots of laws don't apply to Australia, physics being just one of them. They're upside down, yet don't don't float down towards the sky. It's madness, or at the very least, witchcraft.

Support whizz 'fixes' screeching laptop with a single click... by closing 'malware-y' browser tab


In my early days as a PFY I was summoned to a director’s office by a frantic secretary. The Director had been on a trip to Hong Kong and couldn't get any audio on his laptop, neither for work purposes or for listening to music or watching films. He'd spent ages trying to fix it, but with no success, and it was still broken now he was back in the country.

A quick check confirmed that no sound was coming from the speakers. However, this was the mid 90's, the laptop was a Toshiba, and had a thumb wheel volume control. One quick twiddle later, and the laptop worked perfectly again.

Cue one embarrassed Director, and one smug IT support guy.

Holy moley! The amp, kelvin and kilogram will never be the same again


Re: My calculator is out of date

The only constant on my calculator was 58008

Foxconn denies it will ship Chinese factory serf, er, workers into America for new plant


4 Million gallons of water per day...

... to be rendered unfit for human consumption!!!!

That's over twice the amount of bottled water consumed across the UK on a daily basis.*

How can that be considered a political win in any way at all, unless you don't care about the enviro.....




Oh, as you were.

* - https://www.statista.com/statistics/283762/bottled-water-consumption-volume-in-the-united-kingdom-uk/ - annual consumption of UK bottled water, then converted to US gallons.

US government charges two Chinese spies over jet engine blueprint theft


China currently buys its jet engines from the US and Europe and has been trying for years to produce its own domestic jet engine.

I'm still not clear why they would need to steal blueprints for an engine, when they could reverse-engineer one that they'd already purchased?

Shift-work: Keyboards heaped in a field push North Yorks council's fly-tipping buttons


Won't someone take Ctrl of this thread, (Num) Lock the comments and put a stop to (or at least Pause) these jokes? It's almost the End of the day and I want to Esc the office and Return Home.

Cops called after pair enter Canadian home and give it a good clean


Re: Milk in Bags?

Yup. Usually clear bags holding about 4 pints (I'd guess).

My wifes aunt works for a "welcome wagon" - when someone new moves into the area they get a visit from the wagon, which generally involves being told about the vicinity, given a load of vouchers for local businesses etc. One of the things they also get given is a plastic jug for milk. Slip one of the milk bags in, snip off the corner and away you go.

Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?


Teacup, meet storm

Jesus. It gives you an option to install your browser of choice anyway, and also has a link to prevent further messages like that appearing.

Sounds to me like it's nothing more than a millennial taking to Twitter for his 15 minutes of fame.

Revealed: The billionaire baron who’ll ride Elon’s thrusting erection to the Moon and back



able to carry a payload of 100 people into space, and/or the hardware to keep them alive once they get there.

Just wait until RyanAir start offering a similar service. You'll be charged extra for peanuts, baggage and life support.

Microsoft's Chinese chatbot inspired by images to write poetry


Re: not sure which is worse...

Wow, this work easily pushes Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings into second place.

CIMON says: Say hello to your new AI pal-bot, space station 'nauts


Am I the only one that thinks this looks like GERTY from the film Moon?

Drug cops stopped techie's upgrade to question him for hours. About everything


best collective noun...

...for a group of clowns would be a circus.

Ailing ZX Spectrum reboot firm kicks crisis meeting into long grass


If a company says "we're going to photograph the coloured shells. They were out for shipping by Royal Mail today, but were sent back to the depot. We're paying extra to have them delivered Saturday, and will post photo's ASAP", and almost a year later hasn't done so, how is that the backers fault?

If a company says "We're on track to deliver by the 12th of May", 7 months after saying "we'll have them out for October", and hasn't done so, how is that the backers fault?

If a company can't show a single image of a working machine, 2 years after a working prototype was ready to go into production, how is that the backers fault?

The actions of RCL over the past 2 years have been a complete embarrassment, ranging from pulling (one of) the release date(s) to redesign the hardware after a bunch of kids discovered a button problem just before launch, through to being asked for the dimensions of the unit, and when one backer produced an image with their best guess based just on the size of the USB port, RCL told them they were exactly right (and by the way, could they borrow that image for their own use?)

Other than several renderings of the final product, RCL have shown noting beyond the original prototype, some 3D printed offerings of questionable quality, and a bag of buttons (not even chocolate ones).

Sir Clive Sinclair dragged into ZX Spectrum reboot battle


The statement was true at the time it was issued. Less than an hour after receiving that message, RCL miraculously and entirely coincidentally announced they would start shipping this coming week. SCL then declared they would wait to see what happens regarding this before moving to oust the directors.

So Andrews was right at the time and if RCL again fail to follow up on their promise, he presumably will be again.


Re: Well I backed it...

The point is that when the Vega+ was launched on IGG, it was already prototyped and tested. The money was simply tonight the device into mass production. All of the risks associated with backing "an idea" should have been mitigated.

RCL took over half a million quid for something that was ready to manufacture and have so far produced nothing but restaurant bills and legal fees.

Twenty years ago today: Windows 98 crashed live on stage with Bill Gates. Let's watch it again...


Re: Bill Gates

He made the money by getting the cravat in on the deal that he could licence DOS to other companies.

Always important to dress well when making a deal.

The law of run Nintendo consequences: Sega brings out mini Mega Drive / Genesis


Now I have the music to the GameBoy version of Robocop in my head.

Commodore 64 makes a half-sized comeback


Did they actually ship them (Vega+) yet?

Very much not - retro-computers.co.uk

Just for clarification however - the team behind this C64 were involved in the original Vega (which did ship). They left RCL almost 18 months ago after falling out with the current management over the Vega+, including (amongst other things) whether they should be taking any salary until the product shipped. They believed they shouldn't, the current RCL lot disagreed and appear to have since wasted the entire IndieGoGo fund (half a million quid of investors money) on doing anything but delivering a finished product.

The URL I posted above makes for very interesting reading!

Microsoft Office 365 Exchange issues for users across Europe


I've been having issues being unable to send mail since about 11 this morning. Still not fixed :-(

Tesla death smash probe: Neither driver nor autopilot saw the truck


Re: Still driving?

I'm getting a strong sense from the article that the car kept going despite the likely instant death of the driver and the ripping off of the entire roof.

I'm not actually sure how a "regular" car would cope any differently.

My 2011 car has standard cruise control. If I wasn't paying attention and ended up instantaneously losing a few KG of body weight, along with the instant conversion of my car to a cabriolet, I don't know whether my car would necessarily stop either.

Disabling my CC requires me to operate either the brake or the clutch, or manually disengaging it via the controls. I'm pretty sure that the CC software only has a limited set of programmed scenarios that will cause it to turn off.

The car failing to stop is the least of the issues here - the fact that some guy got behind the wheel, set the cruise control for almost 15% over the maximum speed limit on the road, and then sat back and only made contact with the steering wheel for, on average, 1 second for every minute and a half that the vehicle was moving, just goes to prove that some people are too stupid to be trusted with technology in some cases.

I'll probably never be able to afford a Tesla, but if I could, and it came fitted with "autopilot", or whatever they've renamed it to now, I still have enough common sense to know that it's not the equivalent of a digital taxi driver. It's a driver assistance only, and still requires input and concentration from the person behind the wheel.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but Microsoft's 'Ms Pac-Man beating AI' is more Automatic Idiot


So much wrong with this.

Other than the background at the top of the article, those screenshots look to be from the Atari VCS version of the game - which is far, far removed from the arcade version.

Also, a quick google would suggest that the current human score for Ms PacMan was 933,580, set back in 2006 - http://www.twingalaxies.com/scores.php?scores=1386

So basically, what the article is really saying (errors withstanding), is that after a lot of hard work, Microsoft have produced something AI-ish that can set a slightly higher score on a dodgy home-conversion of Ms PacMan, when compared to a human playing the genuine arcade version over 10 years ago.

Doesn't quite have the same ring to it though.

Currys PC World given a spanking for misleading laptop savings ads


Would this "factory tour" also include a tour around the basement, including the areas where the lights are dodgy and the CCTV doesn't work, accompanied by a couple of oversized security guards carrying a length of lead pipe and a newspaper?

It came from space! Two-headed flatworm stuns scientists


Re: Two inputs, no output?

So more of a splatworm then?

Science megablast: Comets may have brought xenon to Earth


Re: Oh thanks, now I'll have bloody Bomb the Bass stuck in my head all day!

Cheats? CHEATS?

Perseverance, that's all I needed.

... and lots of it!

Event horizons around black holes do exist, say astroboffins



"They only considered black holes weighing more than 100 million times the mass of the Sun, allowing them to narrow down to about a million of them within a few billion light-years of Earth.

The sheer scale of numbers in this statement is what makes this kind of science so awesome!

Mouse sperm kept frozen in SPAAAAACE yields healthy pups


Re: Don't these so called scientists know anything

Funny you should mention that...



Someone, somewhere has a job in the Japanese space industry with an interesting name (astro-biologist or something). Their parents are extremely proud, their friends think it must be a cool job, their kids all excitedly tell their mates that they have a parent that does "space stuff" but in reality, they've had to go to work and wank a mouse.

America's mystery X-37B space drone lands after two years in orbit


Re: it is unlikely that it carries any weapons... cough... cough...

Thank you, a much better explanation than I would have written, and well deserving of a thumb up.

I must, however, query one of your statements:

however the air rifle is incorrectly named as the barrel of an air rifle isn't rifled

My current (ageing) air rifle (Air Arms TX200, FWIW) certainly does have a rifled barrel. As does my previous rifle (Weihrauch HW 77K), and several owned by my father (including rifles from Anschütz, BSA, Gamo and Parker-Hale).

In fact, I don't think I've ever seen an air rifle without a rifled barrel.


Re: it is unlikely that it carries any weapons... cough... cough...

A pellet gun would probably suffice to destroy a satellite if it could be aimed precisely enough.

In the vacuum of space? I think not!

(a "pellet gun", aka an air rifle or air pistol, usually relies on a a spring to rapidly compress the air in a chamber behind the pellet. That in turn pushes the pellet out under pressure. The principle isn't really much beyond a pea shooter or blowpipe. No air means no force pushing the pellet).


Former RCL director: It was me who cancelled their domain names


Re: Very odd

The whole Vega Plus saga could be described as "odd", and this seems par for the course.

Apparently, RCL keep changing the Indiegogo owner name back to Paul Andrews as well, despite him repeatedly telling them (Indiegogo) that he's not responsible for it anymore. They change it back, then RCL change it back again. RCL seem to be utterly inept, and considering the amount of bullshit they're spreading, would be better setting up a new campaign to produce fertiliser.

I'm not a backer, and gratefully so in this instance.

Forgetful ZX Spectrum reboot firm loses control of its web domains


Re: Why bother?

For a portable Spectrum experience, the PSP is more than capable of doing exactly what the Vega Plus would have done.

iPhone lawyers literally compare Apples with Pears in trademark war


Well done Apple

You're rapidly becoming the new EasyGroup (who in the past have tried suing curry restaurants, pizza places and gyms)


Another ZX Spectrum modern reboot crowdfunder pops up


Re: SAM Coupé beat them all by decades

I've a Sam Coupe core on my FPGA board, and it works very well. The majority of the cores for mine are open source, so there's a reasonable chance that it could be converted.*

* -There are other factors that may affect a conversion - memory type seems to be a regular issue (SDRAM vs DRAM), but also the design language used by the various FPGA's on the market (VHDL vs Verilog).


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