* Posts by Francis Boyle

1753 posts • joined 29 Jul 2007

Train station's giant screens showed web smut at peak hour

Francis Boyle
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I hope if they do they give us a head

s up

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Vigorous tiny vibrations help our universe swell, say particle boffins

Francis Boyle
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Re: Things aren't getting pushed apart

"If the space in the solar system out to Earth's orbit inflates its diameter by a Planck length every "time period", how would you know?"

When it gets to the point of the "Big Rip" you'd know. Or rather you wouldn't because you'd be dead.

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Uber is a taxi company, not internet, European Court of Justice advised

Francis Boyle
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"And to "United" right now..."

Which side of the pond are you on. Oh wait. . .

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Francis Boyle
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Cakes or biscuits?

You're still on that? According to XKCD it's the definition of a sandwich which is where it's at.

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Amazon's Alexa is worst receptionist ever: Crazy exes, stalkers' calls put through automatically

Francis Boyle
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Re: How do you think...

PTW, doncha know that when a woman makes a complaint it's necessary to point out that all her problems are down to her own cluelessness. Can't have the little ladies getting the idea that they know stuff.

(/sarc mode)

(Yes, I know that victim-blaming (i.e. user) is a professional hazard among tech people so maybe the OP was only accidentally being sexist.)

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US Coast Guard: We're rather chuffed with our new Boeing spy drone

Francis Boyle
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Re: @ Ledswinger -- £10m a year for a drone?

The days of "Rule Britannia" ended on the first of September 1939.

Not that "Fight for your life Britannia" wasn't impressive but there was only one way it could end.

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Space upstart plans public cloud in low Earth orbit

Francis Boyle
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Please teacher, I know this one.

He was a scammer.

Next question.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: "More space junk and rare minerals burning up..doesn't really sound like the sanest plan ever?"

"Like shipping laundry from the Klondike to Hawaii to be washed."

Citation please. The only think I could find was an "amusing facts" page which says it was California and China which is a bit to much like a Radio Yerevan to inspire confidence.

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Mozilla to Thunderbird: You can stay here and we may give you cash, but as a couple, it's over

Francis Boyle
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Re: - the dominate corporate email client is Outlook

With Microsoft there is never a safe word. "Safe, sane and consensual" - nah, not even one out of three.

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China's first large passenger jet makes maiden flight

Francis Boyle
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Re: Fly on one - if you have a death wish

The Chinese build their high speed rail lines on concrete viaducts. If you saw rust you were looking at older infrastructure. Seriously, how could you see the supports of the bridge carrying the train you were travelling in?

@SundogUK

The Chinese are doing extraordinary things with their rail infrastructure. That's not Chinese government propaganda. I try not to let my dislike of the Chinese regime blind me to the very real achievements of the Chinese as a people and a culture. Adopt that approach and you might save yourself some nasty surprises.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: On the plus side, instant familiarity

That Auto Express article is bizarre. With two or three exceptions of the (the A6, the ersatz Rolls Royce, and possibly the Lifan 330 which is very Mini-like) the Chinese vehicles in the list bear no more than a generic resemblance to the supposed western originals. Apply a collection of currently fashionable styling elements to a vehicle and you will inevitably end up with something that more or less resembles all the other vehicles in that class. The author appears to have merely selected whichever vehicle he thinks is most like the alleged infringer (i.e. whatever Chinese vehicle he could find a picture of) and called it a match. Even the horrible Rolls Royce ripoff really only counts as such because RR effectively owns the category of big square luxury car.

Not that I am denying the Chinese copy. But stylistic copying happens all the time. We call it fashion. The only reason we don't in this case is that we are not yet ready to start copying from the Chinese. But that will happen soon enough and then we'll change our tune.

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US Navy developers test aircraft carrier drone control software

Francis Boyle
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Re: Really??

Unfortunately, I suspect that it's an entirely reasonable comment given that currently most software development (not just the IOT stuff) appears to be based on the "put it out there and if someone pokes a hole we can always release a patch, maybe" principle.

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First cardboard goggles, now this: Google's cardboard 'DIY AI' box powered by an RPi 3

Francis Boyle
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Re: Why I feel uncomfortable...

The Pi can get hot but no hotter than a pizza straight from the oven which is why I built a Pi cluster in a Domino's pizza box*.

*This is, of course, not true. I wouldn't be seen dead with a Domino's Pizza Box. Someone might think I eat the stuff.

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

Francis Boyle
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Re: Lots of legal fun

If that happened they'd have to reintroduce the farthing so he could pay the damages.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: It just gets worse...

RCL are looking worse: the others are looking fucking brilliant.

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Lyrebird steals your voice to make you say things you didn't – and we hate this future

Francis Boyle
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Re: Just curious

This reminds me of the minor moral panic that happened when Photoshop first became popular. Apparently criminal types were going to get up to all sorts of shenanigans with this terrible new power. Instead, instead it just killed in popular consciousness the always stupid notion that the camera doesn't lie.

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While Facebook reinvents Sadville, we still dream of flying cars

Francis Boyle
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I wouldn't mind a flying car

I just don't want all the other idiots to have one.

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Peer pressure, not money, lures youngsters into cybercrime – report

Francis Boyle
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Re: Game modding?

I made once made a Quake 2 mod were all the soldiers were replaced with Daleks. If only I had resisted I wouldn't have ended up hacking the Democratic Party and Trump might not have been elected. Please forgive me.

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Qualcomm's Windows-capable silicon will land later rather than sooner

Francis Boyle
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Re: No good options

This is for mobile. The article's not exactly clear about the relevance of the Windows Server Arm port but I suppose the suggestion is there will be something similar for desktop Windows. Not that I'm blaming the Author. It seems Qualcomm is talking big but providing precious few details and we all know what that means.

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Opportunity rover gets bored of spot it's explored since 2014

Francis Boyle
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If you want your measurements to be easily divisible by four (or three) you choose appropriate sizes. Which is why your window is 1200mm wide not 1m.

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Facebook's 'delightful' AI Clippy the Paperclip creeps into Messenger

Francis Boyle
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A poll?

Well, that's world peace done, then.

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Francis Boyle
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No

that might actually be fun.

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Boaty McBoatface sinks in South Atlantic on her maiden deployment

Francis Boyle
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No

They managed to get a cheap lot of surplus phone batteries from a source in Korea.

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Boeing-backed US upstart reckons it'll be building electric airliners

Francis Boyle
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Re: Catapult takeoff?

I was thinking along the lines of a White Knight style carrier aircraft to take the electric plane up to a decent altitude before sending it on its way. Technically feasible, probably but I don't for a moment think it would be practical.

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Riddle of cannibal black hole pairs solved ... nearly: Astroboffins explain all to El Reg

Francis Boyle
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Think of it like this:

You jump as high as you can. While you're in the air the Earth collapses into a black hole. Your landing is now going to be a bit harder than you expected. Well, it's not like that, as a famous black hole wrangler once said. But still, it's a bit like that, only more so, since you have two objects that have mass but aren't made of matter, so they can't actually collide but that doesn't stop them combining. . .

Yes, black holes are weird.

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Manchester pulls £750 public crucifixion offer

Francis Boyle
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Re: No nails required

I'm trying to think of how that would work without breaking the bones so badly there's not much purchase left anyway.

It's just a matter of practice and the Romans had a lot of practice.

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Lochs, rifle stocks and two EPIC sea gates: Thomas Telford's Highland waterway

Francis Boyle
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Loch Lochy mcLochyface surely

It is Scotland after all.

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Snakes and bats cause more blackouts than criminal haxors

Francis Boyle
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You mean crocs

It's always crocs in the NT.

Even when it's pythons.

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Cambridge Analytica arrives in Australia to STEAL our democracy!

Francis Boyle
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I you're being a tad sanguine about this, Richard

The reason you or I get Lexus ads is the same reason we get spam - If you have a small target and low ammunition costs it's easier to just blast away in the general area and not worry about the collateral damage (which doesn't really hurt the person with the gun). But when you need surgical precision - say you need to tell the rednecks what a great pussygrabber you are while assuring the evangelicals that you support Christian values - then it's worthwhile paying to bring in a sniper.

That said, I'm not exactly panicking. The techniques a bit like flying planes into buildings - you really only get to use it once before coutermeasures are developed.

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BDSM sex rocks Drupal world: Top dev banished for sci-fi hanky-panky

Francis Boyle
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Re: Bah!

By that logic you can include many religions into the same bucket, yet you cannot fire someone for their religion....

Did I suggest otherwise? I'm not exactly the biggest fan of religion around here. I didn't and I'm not suggesting firing anyone for their beliefs but if their beliefs lead a person to engage in arsehole behaviour then all bets are off.

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Francis Boyle
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Re: Bah!

Except that the Goreans aren't just fantasising or role-playing. They believe, or claim to believe, that all women are by nature submissive. Basically just a bunch of misogynist arseholes using kink as an excuse to be arseholes. Which is fine if they keep it private. But keeping a personal kink private is easy, keeping a belief system to yourself not so much.

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Yee-hacked! Fired Texan sysadmin goes rogue, trashes boot business

Francis Boyle
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Re: "Given the boot"

Bet the heel thought he'd get away with just a tongue-lashing.

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Francis Boyle
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Well I'm currently crowdsourcing funding

for a production of Swan Lake featuring crossdressing lumberjacks. Sling me some money and I'll put them in cowboy boots of your choice.

That's my April Fools done. then.

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BMW chief: Big auto will stay in the driving seat with autonomous cars

Francis Boyle
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Re: Well...

There's still an awful lot of engineering that go's into any car, this stuff is bread and butter for companies like BMW.

The vast majority of the engineering in a car is in the engine, transmission and the suspension. Replace that with a motor in each wheel, active suspension and an actuator for the steering and you've replaced traditional engineering with software and suddenly that bread and butter starts to like toast.

Of course, (some of) the traditional car makers will survive. We've seen this before. Kodak may have destroyed itself but the line up of major camera brands today would be largely recognisable to someone from 50 years ago. But the car makers are going to have a fight on their hands and this looks like an early salvo.

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How hard will it be to measure Planet Nine?

Francis Boyle
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Make Pluto Great Again?

Now you have a slogan.

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Robo-AI jobs doomsday may, er... not actually happen, say boffins

Francis Boyle
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Re: Balance?

At which point you have a massive economic downturn because only a privileged few can now afford to consume the products of all that cheap labour.

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SpaceX wows world with a ho-hum launch of a reused rocket, landing it on a tiny boring barge

Francis Boyle
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Totally Boring

Mission accomplished!

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ESA picks final two ExoMars landing site candidates

Francis Boyle
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No street view

Maybe we could get ESA to scatter a few wifi access points around the place while they're there.

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Happy Motherboards day: Here's some (Optane) memory

Francis Boyle
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Re: 32 GiB!

Perhaps the fact that Intel is not promoting such use tells us something.

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Douglas Coupland: The average IQ is now 103 and the present is melting into the future

Francis Boyle
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If it gets rid of

patch Tuesday. . .

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DNA-bothering eggheads brew beer you were literally born to like

Francis Boyle
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Re: Pah.

I was going for 'pure unadulterated bullshit' but I commend your tact.

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Oz companies fume as Enetica outage enters its second day

Francis Boyle
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Nonsense

Sirens had an all Australian cast. Well, at least the important bit did.

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NASA to fire 1Gbps laser 'Wi-Fi' ... into spaaaaace

Francis Boyle
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Re: Another slight issue?

The article is talking about a test system which will be on a satellite in geosynchronous orbit (presumably because actually creating the tracking tech is still on the to do list). The business about routing is purely commenter speculation. My take is that they are planning to do direct to LEO from a series of ground stations but that too is pure speculation.

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$1m Popslate e-ink screen venture tanks, Indiegogo backers flame out

Francis Boyle
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$1m says

he told a damn good story.

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Shine on, you crazy Eind minds: Boffins fire out 43Gbps infrared 'Wi-Fi'

Francis Boyle
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Nah, the man in the middle

would just wear a mirrored suit. Yes, I've just been reading the comments on the laser weapon article, why do you ask?

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NASA swerves serious cash cuts – but Earth climate probes, asteroid snatcher face axe

Francis Boyle
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Re: It's not a cut, its streamlining

The more I see of his output the more I'm convinced that bombastic bob is simply the next iteration of the amamfrommars AI (most likely created by some sort of merge process with Tay). I mean 'bombastic' displays a level of self awareness entirely absent in the actual output so it has to be a coder's little joke.

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Shameless crooks fling Star Trek-themed ransomware at world

Francis Boyle
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Bunch of p'taks

They deserve a battleth up their jack'sie*. (Pardon my Klingon.)

*Whatdya mean 'jack'sie' isn't the Klingon for arsehole?

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Fire brigade called to free man's bits from titanium ring's grip

Francis Boyle
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Re: Best bit

You might not be yellow, black, or blue but the dick in the pic is, curiously all at once.

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Why is the Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega+ project so delayed?

Francis Boyle
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And on April 1

They will announce that all this has, in fact, been an elaborate historical reenactment.

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Boffins Rickroll smartphone by tickling its accelerometer

Francis Boyle
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I frequently "blindly" trust the input from my eyes.

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