* Posts by 2Nick3

126 posts • joined 19 Aug 2014

I fought Ohm's Law and the law won: Drone crash takes out power to Silicon Valley homes

2Nick3
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Re: Manufacturer imposed NFZ's (No Fly Zones)

"Do you decide what is "safe" and what is not?"

"Do you decide what is "safe" and what is not?"

I'm riding along in the car with a friend of mine, and he blows right through a red light - didn't even slow down! I said "Dude, you just ran a red light!" to which he replied "Yeah, I know." The next intersection we come to has a red light, and he goes right through it. Once again I exclaim "Dude, that was ANOTHER red light!!" "Don't worry about it," he says, "My brother does it all the time and there's never a problem." We get to the next intersection and the light is green, and he comes to a screeching halt! I say, "Dude! It's green, why are you stopping?"

"Because my brother might be coming the other way."

People who make up their own rules in a society tend to throw things off for everyone else. Most laws and rules have a very good reason for being there, even if you don't think they should apply to you.

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2Nick3
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Well, it is California, so it's a distinct possibility.

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Teen texted boyfriend to kill himself. It worked. Will the law change to deal with digital reality?

2Nick3
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I'm wondering if the boy's family has a case for wrongful death. That's what the Goldmans and Browns got OJ on, even though he was acquitted of murder.

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2Nick3
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Re: What about Free Will?

"I do not think that you can manipulate somebody to make whatever you want because that person is depressive, and I know that first hand."

One data point doesn't make a trend, and whatever your experience is (which I am not dismissing - depression is real and it sucks for the person suffering it and everyone who cares for them) doesn't seem to represent the whole continuum of depression. The longing to feel good, even just better than your normal state, can drive some people to some incredible extremes of behavior. Likewise the desire to not disappoint a person who you are allowing to determine your self-value (which seems like the case here) can drive you to actions you would never normally consider.

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2Nick3
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Re: Oh no! Cyber!!

Well, as this is a tech/IT website, so the fact they are talking about the technology aspects of the case seems pretty appropriate.

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When can real-world laws invade augmented reality fantasies? A trial in Milwaukee will decide

2Nick3
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Re: a Mortal Threat...to augmented reality games

I completely agree with your comparison to a concert - this is the same thing. You are attracting people to a location for entertainment purposes, so you need a permit. To get that permit, you need to provide facilities (toilets and parking) and security, or pay for them to be provided. Just because the crowds will be people intently staring at their phone screens instead of a stage doesn't change it.

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Dish Network hit with $280 MEEELLION fine for relentless robocalling

2Nick3
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Facepalm

Now if only the Do Not Call List applied for political calls...

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Cuffed: Govt contractor 'used work PC to leak' evidence of Russia's US election hacking

2Nick3
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"People who are trusted with classified information and pledge to protect it must be held accountable when they violate that obligation."

Unless they run for President, right?

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The nuclear launch button won't be pressed by a finger but by a bot

2Nick3
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King also had a book under the Bachman name called "Rage," which described a school shooting incident, way before they were common.

So is King predicting the future, or is he causing it? <glances warily at the dog/>

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Florida court's schizophrenic rulings throw mobe passcode privacy into doubt

2Nick3
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Sure, except...

"Many people, including myself, can't remember passwords from a year ago."

I'd venture to guess that most people, including this lawyer, are using the same passcode on their phone from a year ago.

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US laptops-on-planes ban may extend to flights from ALL nations

2Nick3
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Childcatcher

Re: "Planes ban may extend to ALL nations"

"US tourism PR heads are already warning about a lost decade!"

That would make shorter lines at Disney World, at least!

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2Nick3
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"The four 9/11 flights were all domestic flights. Make of that what you will."

But has there been a successful terrorist attack on a US domestic flight since then? I can't recall any (and searching for that involves terms I don't want to be associated to...). The debate is over causality - are the security procedures in place working, or is there another reason for the lack of incidents?

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IBM marketeers rub out chopper after visit from CEO Ginni

2Nick3
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Re: Just something to think about...

You forgot the cost for the accountant to figure out all of that, the auditor to make sure it's right, the executive review to change it, the accountant's time to revise...

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IBM asks contractors to take a pay cut

2Nick3
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How often are these outsourcing contracts renewed?

You hear a lot about outsourcing contracts ending, with either a new supplier involved or things going back in-house, but how often are they actually renewed? After outsourcing to IBM/HP/CSC/Patheon/Accenture/CapGemini/etc for 3-5 years, what do companies do next?

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2Nick3
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Re: @Back Door ... So...

I know a few IBM lifers, and they are all afraid of trying to move outside the company. They realize a lot of the culture they are used to won't fit well anywhere else.

IBM even has it's own internal Resume/CV style that doesn't work well outside the company.

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Sysadmin finds insecure printer, remotely prints 'Fix Me!' notice

2Nick3
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At my daughter's dorm this past year just about every room at a WiFi printer in it, including hers via her roommate, which they were sharing.

The first issue was that, between all of devices attached to the network the IP table for the building was consumed. That sorted out when all of the extra devices (family cell phones, etc.) left after move-in was complete. Then there was the fact that most everyone had the same model printer (it was on sale at the nearest office supply store), so identifying which one was which on the network was near impossible, unless you changed the printer name (and were willing to go through pages of names to find yours - always start with 'AAAA' to be at the top of the list!). And IP addresses changed frequently, so permissions had to be updated frequently, for those that had even bothered.

My solution was a USB cable off the back of the printer - worked every time my daughter plugged it into her laptop. Her roommate fought the WiFi until they were both sick of the printer firing up at 03:00 and printing a random job from someone else in the building.

Simple is so often better.

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PAH! Four decades of Star Wars: No lightsabers, no palm-sized video calls

2Nick3
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Re: Bah!

Nope, my eyes were wide open, even had just had a second cup of coffee. It was a genuine question, my apologies that you took it as some kind of insult.

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2Nick3
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Re: Bah!

Didn't the scroll at the beginning start out with "Episode IV: A New Hope" even in the initial release?

(Need to find John, the guy from my school who claimed to see Star Wars over 100 times in the theater. He'd remember for sure!)

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Drones over London caused aviation chaos, pilots' reports reveal

2Nick3
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"Plastic carrier bags and party sized balloons should pose no threat to even small single engine ultra lights,let alone a huge four engine accident waiting to happen like a 380.."

Fouling the prop on a single engine light aircraft would cause a major problem - it just became a glider (and not an efficient one with a fouled, unfeathered prop). And the pilot now has to find a suitable place to land within the glide range (which decreases with any maneuvering they do) while also keeping the plane above stall speed (which increases during maneuvering).

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Bankrupt school ITT pleads 'don't let Microsoft wipe our cloud data!'

2Nick3
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Re: Price googing?

"You would have thought they would have got a better discount but OTOH there are other unspecified items."

Well, there is no incentive at all for MS to provide a discount at this point. There is zero chance of a renewal. They aren't going to collect on the bill, which means they will end up writing it off, so maximizing the value makes sense. And if they somehow do collect on it, so much the better.

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IT firms guilty of blasting customers with soul-numbing canned music

2Nick3
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Time Warner Cable

When on hold for TWC you would regularly hear Jackson Browne warn you "The Next Voice You Hear Will Be Your Own."

Great song, wrong message...

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What is dead may never die: a new version of OS/2 just arrived

2Nick3
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"Odd - I never had any issues with our OS/2 Notes servers. They just ran and ran, and were fairly nippy too."

The only problems I ever had running Notes on OS/2 was when the Notes Admins did something dumb. Like turning off the machine because shutdown took too long (because Notes was doing it's shutdown).

A few corrupted os2.ini and os2sys.ini files later the Notes Admins weren't allowed in the data center any more.

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2Nick3
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Re: To quote a popular song ... 'Let it go !!!'

The joke was if you wanted to stress test your hardware build install OS/2 on it. If it got through the install and booted up, you had a solid machine. The bugger was trying to diagnose the TRAP 0002 to determine what was failing.

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Police anti-ransomware warning is hotlinked to 'ransomware.pdf'

2Nick3
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Or when your corporate Cyber-Security annual training is outsourced, so the email everyone in the company got to invite them to the training looked just like what you were supposed to avoid:

Unknown sender

Link to an abbreviated URL

All recipients on bcc

Lots of "action" words - "Immediate" "compliance" "required"

Font changes through the body of the message

This was the week after Corp IT Security sent out an email describing exactly what to watch out for, and they managed to check every box on the list. I can't imagine how many help desk tickets got opened that day!

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MP3 'died' and nobody noticed: Key patents expire on golden oldie tech

2Nick3
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Re: MP3 is good enough for 90% of people.

I had a professor in college who claimed he could hear the digital "steps" in CD playback. Back in 1993-94. It's supposedly impossible for the human ear to detect, but he claimed he would get headaches listening to CDs. He would correctly identify cassettes recorded from CD against store-bought cassettes or recordings from LP, and we even tried to fool him once by switching between LP and CD for sources on a mix tape. He offered a 5% bonus on your final grade if you could fool him - to my knowledge no one ever claimed it.

But then he was a huge Grateful Dead fan, so who knows??

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IBM's pension fund sells most of its IBM shares

2Nick3
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WTF?

Not a big deal for the value of the IBM Pension Fund

Based on a share price of $180 (about the high for the year), the value of IBM stock in the fund went from just under $15m to $2.2m. So for the >$100b (fund value at the EOY 2014 per the 10-K filing), the portion of IBM stock in the IBM Pension Fund went from 0.015% to 0.002%.

So the IBM Pension Fund never really had much faith in IBM stock in the first place.

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Beaten passenger, check. Dead giant rabbit, check. Now United loses cockpit door codes

2Nick3
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What if the pilot and copilot both have the fish???

If someone has to let you in from the cockpit side of the door, and both pilots are incapacitated, it doesn't matter if Ted Striker is on the flight or not - your only hope is Otto!!

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Crooks can nick Brits' identities just by picking up the phone and lying

2Nick3
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Re: 'Security' questions?

The security questions with answers that can change over time are not very good. I had this one come up the other day: "What is the name of your favourite movie?"

What took me forever to remember is that I had setup the online security on this account a good decade ago, so I had to ask what my younger self would have answered. I probably only got it because I had rewatched it recently.

So then I had to work through how I could have ever liked that movie, much less had it as my favourite!

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Fake ruse: USA Today calls the FBI after half of its 15m Facebook Likes turn out to be bogus

2Nick3
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Re: Never quite understood the logic

Too many people have their self-value defined by the number of "Friends" they have and the number of Likes their posts get.

Is it really 15 minutes of fame when it's the summation of 900k separate milliseconds?

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What's your worst nightmare? A Comcast, Charter cellphone network? Oh, it's coming

2Nick3
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Re: And of course this service will involve piggybacking on Comcast and Charter WiFi routers

I don't have either provider, but from what I hear of them (here and elsewhere) they might be in for a surprise when their customers actually have the choice to not use their services. Such tends to happen when there is competition in a market rather than a physical monopolistic lock-in.

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A 'Transformational License Agreement' – what merry Dell is this?

2Nick3
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TLA?

Trivial Letter Arrangement?

Mine's the one with the BS Bingo cards in the pocket.

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Gang-briefed by IBM bosses in Hawaii? Nah, I'll take redundancy

2Nick3
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Re: Statutory minimum redundancy payouts

"...and they still have the cash to fly 1000 people for a jolly to Hawaii?"

I was thinking "...and they still have 1000 people to fly to Hawaii?"

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Apache OpenOffice: Not dead yet, you'll just have to wait until mid-May for mystery security fixes

2Nick3
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Downvoted for the unnecessary political quip. The comment works just as well without the second sentence.

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Republicans want IT bloke to take fall for Clinton email brouhaha

2Nick3
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Re: but what about that election promise to 'lock her up'?

The prison at Guantanamo Bay is still there, too.

Funny how the power of the Office of the President isn't always what a candidate thinks it is.

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Plan to kill net neutrality is the best thing/worst thing ever! EVER!!1

2Nick3
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Ug

Partisanship has taken over any semblance of common sense. "If THEY are for it, I'm against it!" puts people in some dumb positions...

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Spotify seeks hardware boffins

2Nick3
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Childcatcher

Volume knobs!

One of the advances in car/driver integration that I don't like is the movement of the volume controls to buttons on the steering wheel and the reduction of the volume knob on the dash to something little bigger than a #10 screw (with no resistance and a decelerator function so faster turning gives less change in volume).

When you want to crank up a song while driving down the road, either pushing a button or turning a Barbie-sized knob just isn't as satisfying. And having to turn the knob slowly to get the desired volume increase - the whole point of cranking up the stereo is to be blasting out my eardrums!

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Uber sued by ex-Lyft driver tormented by app maker's 'Hell' spyware

2Nick3
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Re: ...serious driver retention problem

I wonder what the retention is after a week, a month, and 3 months. I bet there is a decent number of people who never give a ride, either because they never bother or spend a day in frustration trying to catch a booking and getting beat to it. And I bet there is a significant portion of drivers who, after giving a ride or two, decide that that kind of work isn't for them and quit. And another good portion that find a "regular" job and quit.

The one year number looks bleak, but it's only a single data point.

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New MH370 analysis again says we looked in the wrong places

2Nick3
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Re: Still no changes

Do you remember what a cell phone looked like 30 years ago, right? The "mobile" one was the Motorola DynaTAC "Brick phone" - 28 ounces with an in-use battery life measured in minutes.

Or a 30 year old "laptop" - the Macintosh Portable. 16 pounds, 16 MHz 68000 CPU, 640x400 Black/White screen, lead-acid battery.

Just two examples of technology improvements over the last 30 years. With aircraft having longer lifespans than 30 years an upgrade is pretty inevitable. Modular might not make sense because the nest step on the technology here could easily be a system-on-a-chip with 3 connections - GPS antenna, SatPhone antenna and power. And only one of those attaches to the rest of the plane (power), and should have no data connectivity at all.

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2Nick3
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Re: Still no changes

"You might as well just stick an sealed unit in the aircraft (inaccessible from the interior of the aircraft to prevent tampering) that starts pinging location data via satellite should all of the other electronics go off."

Or just have a real-time data connection providing basic telemetry information throughout the whole flight. Much easier to tell if it's not working (no takeoff clearance if the plane isn't sending the data), easy to isolate from the other systems on-board the aircraft. And it gives you a historical account of where the plane was and where it was heading.

For how much a plane costs and all of the other operating costs associated with flying doing this is barely a rounding error - there are <$100 devices I can strap to my wrist that gather this data and <$2000 satellite phones that can transmit the data - so the upfront and operating cost is insignificant over the operational lifetime of an aircraft.

And make it modular, so in 30 years people don't have to wonder why we are still using this 2010's technology and can just upgrade it.

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While Facebook reinvents Sadville, we still dream of flying cars

2Nick3
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Re: Better cars

#10 is here. And while the button in my Honda it is labeled "Start/Stop", the Stop is in a smaller font size.

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Microsoft promises twice-yearly Windows 10, O365 updates – with just 18 months' support

2Nick3
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Re: Dear gods...

"The users want the same thing they've always wanted: The choice to use software on their computer in a way they decide to, not necessarily in the way the software giants want them to."

That's a small handful of users, where most users want their machine to work without having to learn a bunch of new stuff, or perform extra steps, or type in something in a highly specific context. They don't want the power to do something in multiple different ways, they want it to work in one way, reliably, every time they do it. Why are there so many Windows XP systems still running out there (~7.5% based on https://www.netmarketshare.com/operating-system-market-share.aspx?qprid=10&qpcustomd=0) - users don't want to change.

Microsoft is aiming for the masses, and is more than happy to let some percentage of the population leak out around the edges.

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Apple's zippy silicon leaves Android rivals choking on dust

2Nick3
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What's old is new again

Android is the Windows of the mobile market.

Yes, I said it. And it's an accurate comparison:

Runs on all kinds of hardware / must run on all kinds of hardware

Compatibility between versions, drivers and applications can be very complex

OS developer doesn't have a big stake on the hardware side of things

HW vendors customize it (even more with Android than Windows, but think of all the bloatware/utilities on a new Windows machine)

Anyone can write an application for it and distribute it

...

Yeah. Mine is the flame-retardant one because of the usual reaction to this statement.

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Sysadmin 'trashed old bosses' Oracle database with ticking logic bomb'

2Nick3
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Re: Lots of revenge hacks recently...

Or he was they guy who should have disabled the subordinate's ID and noticed when it was re-enabled. He was THE sysadmin at that point, and was therefore expected by his employer to act in a professional manner.

At some point you have to trust someone. When that person turns out to be untrustworthy you are in a really bad place.

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Super Cali goes ballistic, Uber drivers are stocious (allegedly!)

2Nick3
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Which way do you error here? Not suspending the driver immediately, even if not mandated by law, surely opens Uber up to all kinds of liability. If they have a driver that they get a warning on crash and injure his next client then things get very ugly for them very quickly.

And I would assume the driver knows this has happened right away via the app. If I were a driver being falsely accused of DUI I would drive right to the nearest police station and ask to be sobriety tested. That should resolve the investigation very quickly.

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Cloud computing is bigger than AWS and Azure

2Nick3
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Mainframe was the first Cloud

Centralized and shared storage and compute, remote users who don't need to know about the backend, Yes, Cloud is more than just that, but so is mainframe computing.

IT is great at recycling old ideas and reapplying them with a new name. What is old is new again.

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TCP/IP headers leak info about what you're watching on Netflix

2Nick3
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Re: Not even HTTPS can hide your secret Gilmore Girls fetish

The AC is completely open??

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FCC kills plan to allow phone calls on planes – good idea or terrible?

2Nick3
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Re: erm,

At $5.00/minute you needed to be a rich jerk to make a call with those, or have someone else paying for it. I had to call on one once, having been paged for a Sev1 issue just before boarding and having a VP tell me being on a flight wasn't an excuse to be unavailable. The sound quality was horrible (like an old analog cell phone at the range limit from a tower), it dropped the call a few times (like an old analog cell phone at the range limit from a tower), and the 65 minutes of calls came to $325 (like an old analog cell phone at any range from a tower).

The drinks for the two other passengers in my row was another $16. When forced to be a jerk you can at least own up to it.

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BOFH: Defenestration, a solution to Solutions To Problems We Don't Have

2Nick3
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Re: I think we see

I'm wondering if Simon will retire as the BOFH, Steven gets promoted to BOFH, and James becomes the new PFY.

The PFY has pretty much mastered the BOFH skills to this point, it might be time for him to fly. No, not out the window - that's reserved for the boss!

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Crafty Fokker: Norfolk surgeon builds Red Baron triplane replica

2Nick3
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Thumb Up

It would have been easier...

...to build Snoopy's Sopwith Camel, a.k.a. dog house.

Go get him, World War One Flying Ace!!

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It's 30 years ago: IBM's final battle with reality

2Nick3
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I still have one of those devices to charge the ports in a CAU (or was it MAU - it's been a while. One was unpowered, the other plugged into mains) in my "Interesting things I've used in IT" box. Took a 9V battery and charged up the capacitors so when you plugged in a cable it would be detected and the client system would connect. If a port on the CAU wasn't active for too long the capacitors would lose their charge and you'd have to dig one of these out to get it back online.

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