* Posts by To Mars in Man Bras!

163 posts • joined 24 Feb 2016


Not heard owt bad about Huawei, says EU Commish infosec bod

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Re: All thin foil hat chatter about US aside....

"...At least the Amis don't steal copyrighted information from European companies or engage in state supported piracy, spying and hacking on the scale China does for years now...."

How soon we forget:


Hungover this morning? Thought 'beer before wine and you'll be fine'? Boffins prove old adage just isn't true

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Re: Useful Drinking advice

That's always worked for me. In my experience, there are two types of boozer:

TYPE A –will throw up there and then, once the stage of having drunk too much is reached. As this often involves puking in pubs, clubs or over other people's carpets, parents or pets, the TYPE A boozer, as s/he ages and matures, learns to avoid such public embarrassments by usually managing to stop drinking just before the room begins to spin and vomiting becomes inevitable.

The TYPE B boozer on the other hand, never throws up on the actual night. So s/he can drink and drink until barely able to stand and still want more. However, the TYPE B boozer will then spend most of the next day throwing their ring up and generally feeling like death.

In our house, I am a TYPE A and the missus is a TYPE B. So it makes for some interesting boozing sessions. At the first hint of a room spin, I'll think "Uh-oh! I'll puke if I have any more" and will switch to fizzy water. Whereas the missus has no inner cut-off switch at all and will drink for as long as someone puts a fresh glass in front of her.

Next day usually involves me bustling round the house feeling completely fine, while she lies on the sofa cocooned under a duvet, only emerging briefly every half hour or so to throw up in a basin.

It's official. Microsoft pushes Google over the Edge, shifts browser to Chromium engine

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Stupid Yank Phrases

"...Micro-shaft has DOUBLED DOWN on..."

One of many many stupid American phrases which make me want to head-butt holes in walls. How the fuck do you Double DOWN on something. Doubling by it's very nature means there's twice as much of whatever it was, as there was before. So it's Doubling UP.

And don't get me started on "I could care less", "awesome" or "reach out"!

Linux.org domain hacked, plastered with trolling, filth and anti-transgender vandalism

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Re: Using Yahoo! mail for something important?

I've lost count of the number of times I've seen companies whose website has a company domain name but whose company email addresses are @gmail, @yahoo, @aol, @btconnect.... etc. etc. I always wonder who they hired to setup their website that either didn't tell them or didn't know that, having the domain name, they could now use it for their email accounts too.

Mything the point: The AI renaissance is simply expensive hardware and PR thrown at an old idea

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Or Sophie

You almost beat me to the punch. I came here to pour cold sick on the idiotically twee stories that keep popping up telling us how AI bots "think" things or "want" stuff.

Here's a classic example from Re-Tweet Central [formerly known as BBC News]:


Ad blocking. All fun and games – until it gets political: Union websites banned by uBlock Origin

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I'd Like a Filter...

...That blocked any website which used the words:

AWESOME --as a universal adjective to describe anything remotely pleasant

SUPER --as a universal adverb for adding emphasis to any adjective


REACH(ED) OUT --as a universal replacement verb for 'contact', 'email', 'speak to', 'phone', etc.

I realise that as a result of this, I might have to browse the internet without being able to access 99% of American and wannabe American websites, but I'm sure I could cope!

Xiaomi waggles Mi MIX 3, the first smartphone packing 10GB RAM

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Large Objects of No Desire

Maybe I've just reached that awkward age, but the more advanced phone technology gets, the less I want to upgrade:

Stupidly big screens, notches, fingerprint scanners, idiotic multiple-cameras, eavesdropping AI, press-sensitive screens, pointless 'premium' materials. Every one of the latest fads is something I'd actively NOT want on any phone I was considering buying.

Namecheap users rage at domain transfer pain, but their supplier Enom blames... er, GDPR?

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Namecheap. Arrogant? or Incompetent?

Namecheap annoy the feck out of me by insisting on sending out their domain renewal reminder emails using US style short dates (or "arse over tit dates", as I call them)

Say you have a domain which expires on 6th March 2019. You'll get an email from Namecheap a few weeks before saying "Your domain expires on 3/6/2019" —which you naturally read as "3rd June". I've actually missed the deadline for renewing a domain in the past, because of this.

I've contacted Namecheap about this on numerous occasions, both by email and through Twatter, over the past few years and they point-blank refuse to do anything about it. One reply on Twatter said "We are a US company so we use US date format".

I concluded therefore that either Namecheap are quite happy to see their customers from outside the US go (as I will be doing with each of my domains that comes up for renewal) —or their web engineers are so incompetent that they are actually not able to change their email template so that it uses an unambiguous date format

Android users: Are you ready for the great unbundling?

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Re: Adventures in a NEW Android 6 Phone

Another thumbs up for AFwall+

If you ever doubted Google was spying on everything you do; root your phone, install AFwall+ and block Gboard [the built in keyboard] from phoning home. Then sit back and watch in disbelief as AFwall+ blocks it from making dozens of attempts to connect to dozens of different IP addresses, almost every time you type something in an app.

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Re: Most people think Chrome is the ONLY browser...

>What are people's suggestions for a decent mobile browser?

I use Yandex Browser Alpha. It's very stable. Has Text Reflow a la Opera and plugin support too. And, unlike Firefox, it's not so slow continental drift gives it a nosebleed.

Gotta use the Alpha version though. The release and beta versions don't support plugins, for some odd reason.

Oi, drag this creaking, 217-year-old UK census into the data-driven age

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Re: Data protection.

>>Great if you're a historian, economist or into family history...

Except when, for some reason, a huge American commercial enterprise [ie. Ancestry. com] seems to have somehow managed to be appointed gatekeepers of this info and are allowed to charge us for access to it —profiting from selling us back the data which our ancestors were legally obliged to provide.

[One of the reasons I refuse to fill in any of these census or census-like forms]

Dodgy parking firms to be denied access to Brit driver database

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>60 uk pounds fine for hovering in a UK car park for 11 mins with abundant spaces

Pfft! Just don't pay it.

You only need to pay up if you get a ticket from the police, traffic warden or local council parking official for parking on public land [ie streets, bus lanes, etc] when you shouldn't have. You've committed a [civil] offence.

Parking on private land [as is the case with all these supermarket, retail park carparks, etc] the worst you *may* have done [and even then it depends on specifics like signage, etc] is commit a breach of contract, which is a private affair between you and the owner of the land the carpark is on. If they want you to pay up, they'll have to bring a private court case against you and no-one is going to be daft enough do that for the sake of £50 or £60.

So, damn their eyes to Putney Bridge and laugh in their stupid faces. There's bugger all they can do,

It's 2018 and… wow, you're still using Firefox? All right then, patch these horrid bugs

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Re: Firefox really is the worst

Plus one for Yandex Browser.

It seems to be a re-skinned version of Opera so, if you like Opera, give it a whirl —especially if, like me, you want to run the same browser across all your devices.

It's the only Android browser (outside of Firefox) that supports extensions* (both Opera and Chrome ones). But, unlike Firefox it doesn't run like a slug on mogadon

*[the extensions code is currently being rewritten. So, only the alpha version supports them at the moment]

Hawaiian fake nukes alert caused by fat-fingered fumble of garbage GUI

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Re: @ Florida1920 Confirmation checkbox needed

Don't worry. reCRAPTCHA is much more straightforward:


Beer hall putz: Regulator slaps northern pub over Nazi-themed ad

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Carr Crash

>We wouldn't be making war jokes if their grandads had fought harder*.

>* With apologies to Jimmy Carr

I'd recheck your attribution. i find it hard to believe Jimmy Carr's ever said anything that funny.

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The Best Policy for Everyone...

...is *never* to say *anything*, *anywhere*, *ever*. Just to be completely sure you don't give anyone any reason to take offence. Which, apparently, automatically makes you a criminal these days.

And, just to pre-empt anyone objecting to this comment, I'll be on Twitter in five minutes, posting a grovelling apology.

You GNOME it: Windows and Apple devs get a compelling reason to turn to Linux

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Damning With Faint Praise

>Ubuntu 17.10 was quite simply one of the best releases of the year and certainly the best release Ubuntu has put out in a good long time.

and, a few paragraphs later:

>Canonical pulled Ubuntu 17.10 downloads from its website last month due to a "bug" that could corrupt BIOS settings on some laptops. Lenovo laptops appear to be the most common source of problems, though users also reported problems with Acer and Dell...

See title!

Military alliance NATO adopts official hymn

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NATO Anthem?

I thought they already had one; "The Star Spangled Banner"?

Jocks in shock as Irn-Bru set to slash sugar and girder content

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Re: How to Take The Fun Out of Life in Three Easy Steps

1: Fail to appreciate that there's a difference between "affectionate ribbing" and hate speech

2: Completely lose sense of humour

3: Take offence [usually on other people's behalf] at the slightest opportunity --even when none was intended

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Re: National scandal

>>Next up : Low alcohol Buckfast...

Pah! --Buckfast was for sophisticated lightweights who couldn't handle Mundy's

UK drone collision study didn't show airliner window penetration

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Big Brother

Plus Ça Change

>> A tiny minority of fuckwits will wish to fly their drones wherever they please, the majority of drone owners are sufficiently sensible

This is pretty much a template for British government policies down the years. Insert almost anything you like for "XXX":

1; A tiny minority of fuckwits will wish to XXX, the majority of XXX are sufficiently sensible

2: Government outlaws/licenses/legislates XXX and completely ruins it for the majority of sensible people

3: Minority of fuckwitts ignore bans/licenses/legislation and carry on their XXX fuckwittery as before

4: Government makes wodges of cash from licensing / prosecuting / taxing sensible people who still want to do XXX

5: Amount of undesireable XXX activity unchanged.

Linux Mint 18.3: A breath of fresh air? Well, it's a step into the unGNOME

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Re: I Always Find It Irritating...

>>Assuming that a distro could meaningfully be described as belonging to a geographical region, I imagine that it would be constrained by the localisations of the individual software packages that it contains...

I'm not so much talking about the individual packages which make up the distro. I agree with you there. Those will be dependent on the original developers. I'm talking more about the stuff they do have control of, such as their websites & documentation, etc.

Linux Mint and lead developer is based in Ireland, while Ubuntu's Canonical is based in UK. Yet both use American spelling on their websites. Linux Mint has an American flag icon next to the "English" selection on their website's language choices and Ubuntu has a "Software Center" as part of their distro.

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I Always Find It Irritating...

...when European Linux distros use American spelling throughout their interface and websites.

Bit bum-licky, if you ask me

[Yes. I'm looking at you Mint and Ubuntu]

Tired of despairing of Trump and Brexit? Why not despair about YouTube stars instead?

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Re: Yes, it's mad mad world.

>>I've seen more stupidity in a single thread on YT than I've seen anywhere else in my life...

For a long time, I was of the same opinion. But, believe it or not, the comments on news items on rt.com are even more moronic.

Surprise: Android apps are riddled with trackers

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Google Are The Worst of the Lot

I regularly get notifications from Google popping up on my phone, inviting me to review my stay at this hotel or meal at that restaurant, merely because I've been walking near them, on my way round town.

I've also got AFWall+ [Android firewall] installed, which is blocking anything which doesn't obviously need to be able to connect to the internet. You wouldn't believe how persistent Google's GBoard keyboard is at trying to phone home. Almost every time you enter text in a web form, or within an app, AFWall+'s notifications that it has blocked GBoard start appearing --and GBoard will keep trying on about a dozen different IP addresses, before it gives up.

It seems tantamount to having a keyboard with a keylogger built right in.

As Google clamps down, 'Droid developer warns 'breaking day' is coming

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So, No Other Google News Today, Then?

Hmmm... two stories about Google so far today and no mention of the fact they've announced they're going to start "de-ranking" [nice euphemism!] stories from Russia Today and Sputnik News to "make them harder to find":


Even the BBC managed to mention it briefly, in passing. But obviously censorship of points of view which deviate from the party line is only newsworthy for El Reg when those nasty Russians or Chinese do it.

Malware hidden in vid app is so nasty, victims should wipe their Macs

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Re: Was always going to happen.

>I'm so glad I've got a Mac, they're virus free doncha know.

Came here for this comment. Wasn't disappointed.

Screw the badgers! Irish High Court dismisses Apple bit barn appeals

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Galway != Galloway

>That is why it is in Galloway in the middle of f*** nowhere

Someone else needs a geography lesson. Galloway is in Scotland

我的天啊! China gives Weibo users a week to use their real names

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Re: Theresa's getting her ideas from somewhere...

>>shady maneuvers of suppression by China, Russia, the countries that turn off cell service...

Yes. Thank God nothing like that ever happens in the good ol' freedom-loving West.

[cough! cough! Pirate Bay, Silk Road, Daily Stormer, Stormfront, etc..]

Everyone loves programming in Python! You disagree? But it's the fastest growing, says Stack Overflow

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Best Description I Ever Read of Python....


"It's like pseudo-code that runs"

As a non-professional programmer who, every now and then, has to knock something together to accomplish a repetitive, long or tedious process, I love that aspect of Python.

I don't code regularly enough for huge chunks of the syntax, outside of the basics such as conditionals, loops, functions, etc to stick in my brain. But, most of the time, I can pretty much cobble together something that works well enough for my needs in pretty short order, because the syntax is so straightforward and there are usually already lots of modules out there which do all the things I need to do.

Very often, all I'm left with is the task of lashing a couple of modules together with string and sealing wax and setting it running.

What's your flava? Ooo, tell me what's your flava... of Ubuntu

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Wake me up...

...when they release a Linux desktop with some usable graphics software [and, no, The Gimp isn't within a million miles of being a 'Photoshop competitor']

...and when one of the Linux file managers approaches a similar distance of being as useful as OSX's Finder.

And I say that as someone who thinks OSX Finder is mediocre in the extreme and who would run Linux full-time at the drop of a hat, if I could get some serious [graphic design] work done with it.

But, in its infinite wisdom, the Linux community has decided that; unending internecine warfare over shite that no-one outside of a few geeks cares a jot about [SystemD, GTK, etc] and providing "choice" in the form of 57 crap versions of any application [in order to massage 57 egos] rather than cooperating together to produce one or two quality applications —is the way to win converts.

Ad blocking basically doesn't exist on mobile

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Re: I just want to point out

BTW —my "same here" above referred to finding "...Firefox fucking unusable on Android". But unfortunately, due to the vagaries of The Reg's idiotic 'random shuffle' comments system, it appears after people praising Firefox, so looks like I'm saying the opposite.

Just thought I'd set the [extremely unimportant] record straight.

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Re: I just want to point out

Same here [re Firefox on Android]. Luckily my phone is rooted and I have AdAway installed which does it properly [and system-wide] by blocking ads/etc at the hosts file.

So I can use Chrome [or any other apps I want] and still never see any ads

Forget trigonometry, 'cos Babylonians did it better 3,700 years ago – by counting in base 60!

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Re: We use base 10 for a reason

>I did O-levels (pre GCSE!) in the good old pounds, shillings and pence days. I had to learn how to add, subtract, multiply and divide sums in pounds, shillings and pence

I was a kid in the 1970s and just started school the year before decimalisation. I remember our 'times tables' books went up to 12, but we only ever were taught multiplication up to 10 times.

I guess learning to multiply by twelve was, all of a sudden, no longer a required skill, bit they hadn't updated the text books yet.

BTW: being a child of the decimal era, I always just thought that pre-decimal coinage was just another example of the previous generation making things unnecessarily complicated. It wasn't til much later in adult life that it suddenly occurred to me one day that 12 is divisible by 2,3,4 and 6, whilst 10 is only divisible by 2 and 5 —and I realised there was a method to the old folks' madness, after all.

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Re: Three-valued logic

The USSR did quite a lot of work on 'trinary' computing, back in the 1950s:


CrashPlan crashes out of cloudy consumer backup caper

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Real Men Use the Command Line

I use Duplicity and back up to an Amazon S3 bucket, with the archive files automatically moving into Amazon Glacier after 30 days. I'm quite selective about what I back up, so my archive is just under 90GB. But my last monthly bill was something like 47 yankee cents.

The downside is that; retrieving stuff would require unfreezing it from Glacier and back into the S3 bucket again, which is quite slow and a lot more costly. But, since this backup is only the supplemental 'braces' to the 'belt' of my local NAS backup, I'll only have to call on it in the direst of emergencies.

In the meantime, I have the security of knowing that backup is there, for a few pennies a month.

UK.gov to treat online abuse as seriously as IRL hate crime

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Re: Indie

>But Welsh is easier than Irish!...

Come off it. At least in gaeilge [Irish], we allow use of the occasional vowel!

Daily Stormer booted off internet again, this time by Namecheap

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Orwell Was Right

... the only part of 1984 he messed up on was his description of Big Brother. It should have read "Politically Correct West Coast American Beardy Hipster"

We'll deliver 'in a few weeks' says troubled ZX Spectrum reboot firm

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Also known as 'Selling People Stuff that Doesn't Actually Exist'

Looking for an Ubuntu Unity close cousin? Elementary, my dear...

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>Yep, because I only ever browse files to rename them! WTaF!? Is that about, return or double click "renames"??

* Double click on the icon launches the app

* Doubleclick on the filename beside the icon edits filename

* Select icon and hit RETURN also edits filename

But don't let the fact you don't know how it works stop you complaining about it being broken!

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Re: Omygod! You actually like the Mac OS Finder?

>Why can't we just have a hierarchical display of files in the column, as on Windows?

You mean like 'List View' which is also present in OSX Finder, since forever?

I'm no great fan of Finder [I use the more beefed-up 'Path Finder' on OSX] but one thing it does get right is Column View where the rightmost column provides a preview of the file content, and the built-in Quicklook allows you to tap the spacebar to bring up a larger preview window.

I still don't understand why no Linux desktop has this built in as standard. Having to actually open a file to see what's in it is so bloody primitive!

Firefox 54 delivers sandboxes Mozilla's wanted since 2009

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Project Electrolysis?

Will they be updating the application icon to make the fox hairless, then?

Now you can 'roam like at home' within the EU, but what's the catch?

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Thanks EU! Landline Rental Fees Next?

>>A lot of the time they are their own bloody networks.


When I'm travelling in the North West of Ireland, my phone regularly receives messages welcoming me to 'O2 Ireland' or 'O2 UK', as the case may be --sometimes several times in the space of a few miles [and not always corresponding to the which side of the 'border' I happen to be on].

One minute calls are 5p/min and texts free. The next it's 40p/min for calls and 40p to send a text. And I severely doubt O2 have built two parallel infrastructures serving the same area. So a total rip-off.

Good riddance!

Now. For its next trick, can the EU do something about getting rid of monthly line rental payments, just for the privilege of having a phone line --even if you don't actually have a landline telephone.

Google to give 6 months' warning for 2018 Chrome adblockalypse – report

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Re: Layers upon layers of ad blockers...

>>Just use Firefox on Android, which makes it very easy to use an adblocker of your choice.

Even better: Root your Android device and install AdAway (using F-Droid). It blocks ads and other crap at the hosts file level. So you can use whatever browser you want, without seeing any ads. (And, of course, it also blocks ads within apps).

Your job might be automated within 120 years, AI experts reckon

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>>Your job might be automated within 120 years, AI experts reckon

It's OK. I think I'll be retired by then

Life is... pushing all the right buttons on the wrong remote control

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Not Just Us Then

I thought it was only in our house (what with us being paupers and all that) that binge watching old British telly series (one episode every night with dinner) passed for entertainment. So I'm delighted to find we're actually "keeping up with the Dabbses".

So far, we've worked our way through the entire back catalogue of (in no particular order):

* Dad's Army

* Ever Decreasing Circles

* The Good Life

* Minder

* The Chinese Detective

* Foyle's Law

* Danger UXB

* Van Der Valk

* Are You Being Served

* Lovejoy

... and probably a few more I've banished from memory.

A comment I once read on IMDB summed it up nicely:

"You know you've reached middle-age when you start hating everything on current TV and suddenly realise that Dad's Army was the funniest thing ever written'.

LastPass now supports 2FA auth, completely undermines 2FA auth

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Re: One of the biggest issues

>>I use a different (and random) email address (from one of the 3 domains that I own)...

[engage Michael Caine voice]

Not a lot of people know this. But, if you use Gmail, you can also do this by adding +<something> to your gmail address and the emails will still get to you.

So, if your email is fred@gmail.com, you can sign up at Acme Widgets website with fred+acme@gmail.com. Then when you start getting spam at that address, you'll know exactly who sold on your data. I. have a junk Gmail address for exactly this purpose.

Also works on your own domains, if you use Google's mx servers to handle your email for those domains.

[Of course, needless to say, some eejit websites' email validators won't accept an email address with a + in it as being legit]

Huawei Honor 8 Pro: Makes iPhone 7 Plus look a bit crap

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>>Incorrect spelling of honour, so they've lost a pedantic customer.

Two pedantic customers


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