* Posts by Francis Boyle

1520 posts • joined 29 Jul 2007

Uni students float into Hyperloop finals with levitating prototype

Francis Boyle
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They've achieved levitation

Forgive me if I'm underwhelmed. In Shanghai they do that every 15 minutes.

Snark aside, good for them, but it isn't really any kind of news.

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Bits of Google's dead Project Ara modular mobe live on in Linux 4.9

Francis Boyle
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On the positive side

this will presumably make life a little bit easier for for future attempts. The idea's not dead - it's still around in the form of clip-on hardware which, in my opinion, is the right way to do it. Google's approach was simply far to ambitious for far too little potential gain.

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Without new anti-robot laws, humanity is doomed, MPs told

Francis Boyle
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Mines are the perfect example

People have been arguing for decades that mines should be illegal for exactly these reasons. If anything adding AI makes an autonomous killing machine less problematic. Killbots probably wouldn't be blowing children's legs off decades after the war is over.

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BSODs from around the world, from the wrist-job to public art

Francis Boyle
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Welcome to the future. Indeed.

Literally in the middle of reading this I turned around to find my toaster flashing its three blue lights at me. It's never done that before, honestly. OK, more of a BLOD (blue leds of death) than a BSOD but if were going small I think that beats a watch.

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What's not to love about IoT – you can spy on customers as they arrive

Francis Boyle
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Impressionistic?

It would be surreal if it wasn't so dystopian.

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Good God, we've found a Google thing we like – the Pixel iPhone killer

Francis Boyle
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Re: How long until Google decides ...

'Buying...apps.

Buying...apps...?'

Of course Apple users buy apps. They need to show they can.

Google simply need to promote it as feature not a bug even if it goes against their corporate DNA.

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Swansong for Rosetta as it lands on the duck-shaped comet

Francis Boyle
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Conspiracy theory alert

They had to stage that 'failure' when they found out 46P/Wirtanen is in fact penis shaped.

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UK will build new nuclear bomb subs, says Defence Secretary

Francis Boyle
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You don't want to go messing about with Ada

I've heard her father was bad and mad as well.

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Francis Boyle
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Yes, truly a pity

the Ukrainians weren't in a position to nuke the shit out of Crimea and/or start WW3.

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Arduino vs Arduino

Francis Boyle
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If you know how many Arduinos you have

you clearly don't have enough.

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One-way Martian ticket: Pick passengers for Musk's first Mars pioneer squad

Francis Boyle
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So heidipowell.mars

Problem solved!

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Francis Boyle
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Defenestration - no way

None of these people deserve not to have windows on their machines.

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Panasonic wants you to wear Li-Ion batteries. The ones that explode

Francis Boyle
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Oh Gawd

El Reg linking to itself 18 years ago. I feel old.

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USB-C is now wired for sound, just like Sir Cliff Richard

Francis Boyle
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Re: How does it work?

It's digital according to the press release. Presumably it's not "Audio over USB" because it doesn't use the USB protocol but just provides a digital audio stream.

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Elon Musk: I'm gonna turn Mars into a $10bn death-dealing interplanetary gas station

Francis Boyle
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Re: 42?

It's just a matter of selecting the correct RAID level. That's why the Soviets failed - RAID hadn't been invented then.

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The wait is over: MoD releases latest issue of Ship Paint Monthly

Francis Boyle
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Obviously what Warpaint needs

are more stories about people been woken up in the middle of the night and telling the caller to call someone else.

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The server's down. At 3AM. On Christmas. You're drunk. So you put a disk in the freezer

Francis Boyle
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Re: Wayne?

Well, he could compensate by buying this. Is it too soon to mention Rolf Harris?

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Narcissist Heidi Powell wants her dot-com and she wants it now, now, NOW!

Francis Boyle
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I'm Heidi Powell

Fortunately, I'm more of a .net person.

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Video service Binge On 'broke the internet' but 99pc of users love it

Francis Boyle
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Re: Statistical FAIL

The problem with these sort of surveys is that you get two buttons - "I'm satisfied' and "i'm not dissatisfied".

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Do AI chat bots need a personality bypass – or will we only trust gabber 'droids with character?

Francis Boyle
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Absolutely Inevitable

Time to start checking for giant maggots.

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Cosmology is safe and the Universe is one giant version of the Barbican

Francis Boyle
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Obligatory HHTTG reference

It is after a couple of pan galactic gargle blasters at the eponymous burger bar.

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Francis Boyle
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I don't get the problem

The principle that underlies all cosmology is called the cosmological principle. What do you expect them to call it - Fred?

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Game over: IANA power-grab block pulled from Congress funding bill

Francis Boyle
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I don't see how that would work

since it only relates to the question of whether Cruz is a US citizen (which presumably he is). The real issue seems to be that the US constitution requires a presidential candidate to be a "natural born citizen" and no one quite knows what that means. (Popular understanding takes it to mean born in the US but legal authorities tend to think it includes all children of citizens regardless of where they're born.)

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She cannae take it, Captain Kirk! USS Zumwalt breaks down

Francis Boyle
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Re: That's what happen when you have a Kirk...

Two weeks at base. That'll make for a boring episode.

Unless, they get into some wacky hi-jinks with some cute furry creatures.

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What's Chinese and crashing in flames? No, not its economy – its crocked space station

Francis Boyle
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If it were to hit my home

since I live in Australia I expect my local council would just issue a littering fine.

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MoD confirms award of giant frikkin' laser cannon contract

Francis Boyle
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Re: Arms race rules, anyone?

"As long ago as Reagan's Star Wars SDI imbecility, engineers were pointing out that it's much easier and cheaper to harden missiles against lasers than it is to produce vastly powerful beams which can track and sustain power-on-target against high speed projectiles."

Easier and cheaper - yet in the end it was more than the soviet Union could afford. (I'll leave it open as to whether that was the intent or just a post-hoc justification). Yes, there will be counter measures. Russia will probably afford them, Somali (or whatever county's next on the list) pirates probably not.

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Sorry Nanny, e-cigs have 'no serious side-effects' – researchers

Francis Boyle
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Caffeine's addictive

The moment someone works out how to vape it I'm in*.

Can't be done unfortunately, because chemistry.

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Microsoft thinks time crystals may be viable after all

Francis Boyle
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Re: Microsoft - Messing around with time

"Ever seen the time estimates for a copy operation?"

You've got the wrong end of the stick. Messing around with the fundamentals of time is the only way they can think of to fix the problem.

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'Oi! El Reg! Stop pretending Microsoft has a BSOD monopoly!'

Francis Boyle
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Re: Genuine BSODs?

The glory days of the BSOD were the Windows 9X era when the mere failure to think MS approved happy thoughts would prompt a VXD* to pull a blue screen. That really was Windows fault.

*What do you expect from something deliberately (and awkwardly) named not to sound like a disease.

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Curiosity rover likes big buttes but it cannot lie around

Francis Boyle
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It's French

So pronounced "booty".

Nothing sophomoric here. This is sold gold back-of-the-bike-shed humour.

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Star Trek's Enterprise turns 50 and still no sign of a warp drive. Sigh

Francis Boyle
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Re: As a side note

We don't have warp drive for the same reason we don't have a time machine they (or it since they're the same thing really*) are pure wishful thinking.

We don't have a practical fusion reactor because climate change doesn't wear jackboots and therefore no one is willing to fund a new Manhattan Project.

*See Destroy All Monsters's post below.

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Second 'dimmer switch' star spotted

Francis Boyle
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Good news then

Means the galactic economy is picking up.

The tourists should be arriving any day now. Time to start learning how to make a really good Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster.

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Hollywood offers Daniel Craig $150m to (slash wrists) play James Bond

Francis Boyle
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Yes, Matt Berry as 007

but he has to say "Damn these electric sex pants" at least once. Shouldn't be too hard working that into a Bond flick.

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McAfee-the-man wants McAfee-the-brand, Chipzilla says no

Francis Boyle
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Re: Oh boy...

You've been face to face with John McAfee. You have my sympathy.

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Google scraps its Project Ara modular smartphone wheeze

Francis Boyle
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The only way a modular phone is going to work

is by the creation of an industry standard attachment. (If you've ever tried using a phone with a power bank hanging off a USB cable you'll understand why that's a good idea.) Sadly, I can't see that ever happening.

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London's Francis Crick Institute will house 1,250 cancer-fighting boffins

Francis Boyle
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It's probably just a shield

to fend of attacks from that building that melts cars

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How much does your kid hate exams? This lad hacked his government to skip them

Francis Boyle
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Re: Job offer

Yeah, successful "hacking" requires not getting caught. It's kinda important.

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That Public Health study? No, it didn't say 'don't do chemo'

Francis Boyle
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Re: Irresponsible

"As for the Reg article, thankyou for a well considered and written piece."

Seconded. This stuff is important. Keep at it.

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NIST spins atomic gyroscope to allow navigation without GPS

Francis Boyle
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Re: Hm

Get an astronaut to swing it around on the end of a string.

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SpaceX's used flight-proven rocket to loft Euro satellite this year

Francis Boyle
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I've got a guy called Han here

He's asking me to explain this concept of a "new spacecraft".

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$329 for a MacBook? Well, really a 'HacBook' built on an old HP

Francis Boyle
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A bit chunky

but I wouldn't mind putting Mint on it. (That surprisingly isn't any sort of double entendre.)

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Password strength meters promote piss-poor paswords

Francis Boyle
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no

but it does have password1701. Also Picard 4-7 Alpha Tango (you wouldn't want anyone using that one).

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ISS astronauts begin spacewalk to install new docking adapter

Francis Boyle
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Re: Don't drop that wrench

But if you copy and paste the url it works fine which pretty much defeats the point of the block.

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The calm before the storm: AMD's Zen bears down on Intel CPUs

Francis Boyle
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I'd rather not join that group

I have an FX6100 in a four year old motherboard. I just hoping AMD get Zen out before it dies.

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China launches quantum satellite to test spooky action at a distance

Francis Boyle
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Re: Shutter telegraph

The problem with all such attempts is that it's not possible to tell if an individual particle is entangled by looking at it. Any attempt to read the particle's state will simply ensure that it is no longer entangled. (It won't even tell you if it was previously entangled just that it not any more.) Entanglement is something you have to detect statistically.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: MITM impossible

Look up the "no cloning theorem". Short answer:no. Slightly longer amswer: no, that's just the way quantum stuff works.

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London cops waste £2.1m on thought crime unit – and they want volunteer informers

Francis Boyle
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If where you live

making death threats is not a crime I'm glad I don't live there.

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Swedish Pokemon teens terrorised by laser-wielding 'sex pigs'

Francis Boyle
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Due to conditioning

I read that as 'Swedish Pokemon team' and was quite disappointed to discover that Pokemon hadn't been made an Olympic sport.

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