* Posts by ratfox

3465 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007

Google's Softcard hookup: Never mind Apple Pay ... it's about beating the networks

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It's also end of a dream which saw operators as custodians of the electronic wallet.

Good riddance.

Hawking thesp Eddie Redmayne and Snowden doc Citzenfour win Oscars

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Re: Everything is awesome is AWESOME!

It did not, however, "triumph in the Best Song category", unless by triumph you mean "happen to be at the top of the list in the linked page, just above the actual winner" which was "Glory" from Selma.

Google hatching YouTube Kiddie Vids – report

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They did sign a deal with Mattel…

But for a me version of the Viewmaster. I don't recall any mention of ads, but you never know…

Ads! People! love! ads! in! their! apps! Please! use! ours! cries! Yahoo!

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Re: Fuck ads and all who serve them up

It's a weird thing… Companies like Google generally only make money if somebody actually clicks on their ads. Just displaying an ad does not earn them a cent. Yet they make a shitload of money, which must mean that somehow, there are people who click on a whole bunch of ads.

We must assume these people don't mind ads. And no, I don't know who they are either.

Vodafone didn't have a £6bn tax bill. Sort yourselves out, Lefties

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Re: "Branch" line

And through justification of original purpose we can happily accept the removal of tax. Because it was designed as a way for the king to fund his lifestyle/wars by taking only from the rich

Taxes are now used to pay for necessities which make it possible to have a successful society: Roads, infrastructure, a functional justice system. The aim of the tax system is to fund all of these while hindering economic activity as least as possible. Declaring taxes in multiple countries is a bad idea for small businesses, because it would cost them a lot in accountants and return a pittance. Doing so for large companies would cost them a rounding error in accountants and have much higher returns.

Conflating the idea of stealing with nurture is both twisted but unfortunately popular (as it was with the various socialist paradises). To nurture success is to allow progress and not hinder (see above explanation). To generate wealth is to free the population (the people) to work, to earn, to spend freely (again the opposite to taking their money from them).

You need to invest to get returns. You need to pay salaries to have people work for you. You need to pay taxes to have a functioning country. You might claim that not investing, not paying salaries, and not paying taxes is the right thing to do in order to have more money, by simply spending less.

And that would be wrong.

As for a country that generates nothing it will struggle regardless of the tax level, although it would be very difficult (if not impossible) to get out of the situation with high tax levels.

What is exactly produced by Luxembourg and the Cayman Islands, do you think? Do you believe these places to be struggling?

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Re: "Branch" line

There is an idea to that. The rule that companies are only taxed in their resident countries were written to help small companies and save them the hassle from declaring taxes to half a dozen country.

In the case of large multinational corporations, which do control a company in UK anyway, you might argue that such a helping hand is not necessary: They are already declaring taxes, just for a different activity.

Changing the current laws to insist that companies should pay tax in the country where they earn the money as long as they control a company there does not seem complex (though it might be hard to actually get politicians to do it).

One must only beware of the law of unintended consequences. Microsoft might decide that closing their UK offices could be more beneficial if it allows them to save enough tax.

About the "robbing" comment: Between the country which nurtures success and generates wealth, and the country which generates nothing but sets its corporate tax lower, I find it hard to think that the latter merits more money than the former.

Microsoft leaves the Rooms. How will Windows Phone OS users make to do lists?

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Funny how a feature which would be a very successful product for a start-up, worthy of being valued millions or billions, turns into an also-ran product faced to the global strategy of a big corporation.

Not that Microsoft is alone in doing these types of decision. Apple and Google have both been known to sacrifice products more successful than Rooms to make place for an upcoming great idea.

AT&T suddenly finds demand for 1Gbps fiber in Kansas City – just after Google arrived

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If you needed any more proof that more competition is necessary, you have it. AT&T is rolling out fiber in the only city where it is already available. How useful.

Apple Watch 'didn't work on HAIRY FANBOIS, was stripped of sensor tech'

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Re: People will still buy them

Don't be so negative, it's going to be accurate within 50 milliseconds!

When you miss your train because your Pebble was late by 500 milliseconds, you'll wish you had a real watch; an Apple watch.

Vint Cerf: Everything we do will be ERASED! You can't even find last 2 times I said this

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Saving stuff on the cloud was made for people like me

I recently threw away my university memories.

I bought a server with 1TB for the express purpose of safekeeping all the stuff I had when I left university eight years ago.

The server has sat unused in a corner of my flat for the last three years; I'm not even sure it could still boot. When I moved to a new place last month, I just brought it to the garbage dump because I couldn't bother.

I currently have a Synology for my backups. Hope it works better.

KUSHINIKIZA! Google Translate SAVES BABY in Irish roadside birth

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On one hand, every single one of my ancestors going back billions of years has managed to figure it out. On the other hand, that's the mother of all sampling biases.


UN negotiations menaced by topless women. Or not

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He's just shy

They're not used to let the public know much in Belarus…

I do think that his hypothetical scenario reflects more his fantasies than reality, though.

FACEBOOK even from BEYOND the GRAVE: CHOOSE your Legacy

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Google has a service which gives access to your account to designated people if you don't use it for X months or answer to a few reminders. Does Facebook ask for a death certificate?

Got an Android Wear gizmo? Yeah, you and '719,999 other people'

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Re: Apple who?

designing a product that only a geek would love and foisting it on the world had a fairly predictable reaction

Which is why they tried their hardest to make it a consumer product. If they had designed it for geeks, they'd have gone for an augmented reality thing covering half your face.

There are various reasons Glass was not successful, mostly that it does little that is really useful; but "being designed for geeks" was not one of them.

Swift gets swifter: Apple updates its new programming language

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Growth from zero is always fast

Swift still ranks lower than the likes of Go and Haskell.

Google mouthpieces: 'Right to be Forgotten' should not apply on google.com

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Read the article again, he's right

Currently, if Google decides to accept a request and hide the link to an article for some searches, there is no recourse for the owner of the web site. They might try to convince Google, but they cannot appeal to privacy regulators the way the original requestor could, had the request been rejected.

This is because though the ECJ has ruled people had a "right to be forgotten", they did not include a "right to be heard". There is basically no law that can force Google to display a link. In fact, they often demote sites while tweaking algorithms, or to punish SEO abusers, and nobody has a say in the matter.

Likes of Google to have undue influence in Brussels, say activists

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Letting companies sue governments for lost profits

I simply cannot understand how anyone would dare propose such a legislation. I can't remember of anything even remotely close to this. How is a government to ever curb the misdeeds of a profitable company with such a rule?

"Oh hey, you discovered we were insanely profitable because we were actually spreading a new type of pollutant. If you make it illegal to do it, you'll have to pay us for any profit loss incurred by the new rule."

SPITTLE SPATTER as America weighs into FCC net neut shoutgasm

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"The important protections that President Obama and others have supported and that we have fought bitterly– no blocking, no throttling, no paid prioritization and transparency of business practices –can be enacted without the significant regulatory baggage that comes with public utility regulation; until we complain the FCC has no right to enact those rules because we are not a public utility."

FTFY, Michael Powell…

Death becomes it: Grim Fandango Remastered

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I rate this as the best adventure game I have ever played. Some moments are truly unforgettable!

Drunk on Friday night? Then YOU probably DIDN'T spot Facebook's privacy tweak

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Re: Evolution

To be honest, after the first post, I can totally imagine you declaring "I am very modest" with a straight face, and wonder why people laugh.

Google forced to – wah! – OBEY the LAW with privacy policy tweaks

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Re: I still think...

Well, the thing is, going into the details of every way Google might use your information is probably a very long list, and getting longer every few days…

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Re: Subject access request

Within 40 days? If you have a high speed connection, sure…

'YOUTUBE is EVIL': Somebody had a tape running, Google...

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@I ain't Spartacus

No account, no content ID. So you can't use our automatic anti-piracy tools. It would be such a shame if loads of our users were to put up your content for free, and we get all the advertising revenue anyway.

That's silly. Of course you can still use Content ID. In fact, it was always possible to use Content ID without an account.

The difference is that now, you cannot use Content ID to put ads against the pirated content, only block it.

El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.

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Why are all posts centered??

I hope this is a bug, and not a redesign!

YouTube flushes Flash for future flicks

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Re: p0wned

Yes, that's why people write things like YEAH!!1!ONE!

it's because 'O', 'N' and 'E' are right next to '!'.

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Re: Flash Bash

game developers have catered for different shaped screens since games were invented.

I don't think the comparison is fair. There's like four aspect ratios PC games have to handle. 3:4 was the standard for many years, until we started having 12:10 and the like. Even now on cell phones, it's not all games that can handle both landscape and portrait.

'Boozed up' US drone spook CRASHED UFO into US White House

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Re: For the Nth time

What's the difference? When the US drops a bomb from a remote-controlled aircraft, people call it a drone strike. It's remote-controlled over thousands of kilometers, and it contains way more technology; but it's remote-controlled just like a quadcopter… What is a done, then? Does it need an AI?

Wikileaks: We DO NOT approve of OUR secret stuff being LEAKED

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Re: Didn't the google boys get lots of $s from the feds?

Companies who are ordered to give up information about users are allowed to charge the government for the effort. Considering the number of requests involved, the total they charge is probably impressive; but the amount per request is quite low.

Should Google play carriers at their own game? There's never been a better time

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I'm optimistic

I have the utmost respect for the trick Google pulled on the operators on 2008, forcing them to pay through the nose for spectrum under conditions which they had claimed were so unfavorable they would refuse to bid. That felt good.

Google reveals bug Microsoft says is mere gnat

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I'm reminded of zero-tolerance policies

And the silly decisions they lead to, e.g suspending school children for having a dangerous plastic spoon in their bag.

My bet is that Google will drop this plan sooner or later; and the sooner it is, the least they will cover themselves with ridicule.

Facebook is MORE IMPORTANT to humanity than PORTUGAL

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They are talking about Nigeria or Pakistan, not you. People who start surfing the web for the first time on a cell phone. And this is no exaggeration: For some newcomers in "the next billion", Facebook is really how they discover the web.

Google: What this planet needs is INTERNET FROM SPAAACE

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I thought Google had already bought a satellite company

Skybox Imaging – Wasn't that last year?

Sorry, Qualcomm, Apple – your patents don't scare us

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Anything that can diminish the power of patents counts as a good thing in my book. The system is not working as intended, and is now an obstacle to innovation. At least in the IT world.

Microsoft wants LAMP for wireless mobe charger

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For a while…

I thought Microsoft was going to use Linux-Apache-MySql-Php stacks. That would have been scary.

Migration skills shortage looms as Server 2003 DEATH DATE approaches

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Time to ask for a raise!

Assuming you know how to do that job (not me).

Increased gov spy powers are NOT the way to stay safe against terrorism

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After all, if government is powerless to stop a determined existential threat, what's the bloody point of civilization in the first place?

You are falling into the trap. Terrorism is not an existential threat. There are orders of magnitude more people who die of car accidents, cancer, or killed by their partners than because of terrorism. Terrorism is flashy; but as a threat, it barely registers.

CIA exonerates CIA of all wrongdoing in Senate hacking probe

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"It was a mistake to do it, but we did nothing wrong."

Doublespeak at its finest.

Google UK doubles London Kings X mega-office sprawl

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Re: (cough) Tax (cough)

The Irish VAT is higher than the UK VAT (and most other countries), so Google should be happy about the change. The change should have no implication whatsoever on where the income is, though. It's not because the VAT is now charged in the country of the buyer that the seller is going to suddenly change countries…

Google unleashes build-it-yourself 'Ara' slablet phones (in Puerto Rico)

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No way, no how

There's no way this can be made a success. Making the phones modular means it is easier to swap a part, but the total price of parts can only be more expensive than a standard phone containing the same pieces. So people who want a cheap phone will not buy this.

On the other hand, people who want a luxury phone will never go for a mix and match which does not show how cool they are for owning the right brand.

It's fun to play Lego™, and the technical problems are certainly very interesting; but I simply don't see why anybody would buy this.

Apple v Ericsson: Yet ANOTHER patent war bubbles over

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Grumble grumble All patents should be FRAND

Recall the colonization of the United States.

At the time, to encourage settlers to go populate the big empty West, the government decided that any settler building a house somewhere in a big empty place would automatically own the land around. As a result many people went for the big adventure, and the West ended up colonized.

Now, imagine that the settlers had decided that the land they wanted was a millimeter thin and a thousand kilometer long, along the South-North axis. Imagine further that each settler had decided that, in order to explore further at leisure, search for gold and the like, they would forbid anybody from crossing their property. Or charge a million dollars for passage. How fast do you think the West would have been colonized then, with every few meters a new guy with a gun shouting "you shall not pass"?

Of course, had they tried that, they would have got their arse kicked out by the same government who had given them property of their land; because it was very clear that the colonization was the goal, and the granting of property was only the means.

FRAND patents are the equivalent of settlers grouping to build a road going through their lands, agreeing to let anybody travel that road and not to charge extortionate prices for the right of passage. They typically do that to ensure it is their road that is used by travelers, and not another one which wouldn't bring them a cent.

Right now, in the patent world, there are settlers who have barricaded themselves across valleys leading to vast lands, and are refusing to let anybody through. Because hey, it's their property, they get to decide, and they damn well don't want anybody else reaching those lands, even if colonization is held back centuries. Fuck colonization. Fuck progress.

The sensible thing is for the government to build a road through their lands, and tell them to go fuck themselves. This has happened before, though only in time of crises: See the Wright brothers patent war

Checkmate, GoDaddy – Google starts flogging dot-word domain names

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Re: Where's Michael O'Leary when you need him?

.com domains are a lot more expensive, because they are prime real estate. Outside UK, half the people don't know what .uk is…

And that gives an idea how little those new .whatever TLDs are worth: Nobody would even recognize them as URLs.

2015 will be the Year of Linux on the, no wait, of the dot-word domain EXPLOSION

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Cry me a river

And pass the popcorn!

Most of the population would have trouble even realizing that anything not ending in .com .net .org .gov or one of the country two-letter codes is a URL. In the first place, people are hardly ever typing a URL, preferring to ask Google to bring them to Facebook.

SpaceX drone hovership ROCKET LANDER BURN: Musk to try again

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Paris Hilton


How useful is this really?? Can even the simplest of critical systems be closed orderly in an hour?

I'm guessing it's going to be a long time before such an alarm system is taken into account when designing new infrastructure…

What do UK and Iran have in common? Both want to outlaw encrypted apps

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Die Gedanke sind frei…

The government has not demanded to be allowed to search our minds and read our every thoughts.

The question is, is this because they don't think they should be allowed? Or is it merely because such a thing is not possible — yet?

Android users are massive wan … er … smut consumers

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Paris Hilton

Searching for local girls?

I note that the most searched term for most countries is… the demonym of that country. Either these people are looking for local girls, or they are actually paying attention to the dialog. The mind boggles.

Verizon says 40-hour outage was outage to end all outages

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Verizon has a cloud?

I wonder who would want to use it?

Paris terror attacks: ISPs face pressure to share MORE data with governments

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Thumb Down

They already had the info and did nothing

…I'm sure that getting three times more data is going to be so useful. They'll be even less able to find the needle if the haystack when the haystack is three times bigger.

MI5 boss: We NEED to break securo-tech, get 'assistance' from data-slurp firms

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So in all these years of snooping when phones were not encrypted…

How many terrorist plots did they actually foil?

What an ACE-HOLE! This super-software will whip you at poker, hands down

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Re: Numbers printed without challenge

Poker chip design, natch.

The website is not working for me. It must have overloaded…

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