* Posts by ratfox

3465 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007

DARPA orders 'Katana' monoblade nano-copter

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one blade??

There are good physical reasons why copters usually have three blades, not one... and even not two.

Unless they mean many blades which are part of one bloc?

Airline pilots told to switch off mobile phones

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You're not allowed to turn on your cell phone until the engine stop. Until the moment all the people stand up, grab their bag, and rush for the door which is still closed. Whoever told you you could turn on your cell phone as soon as you landed?!

Apple shares MacBook break-in tips

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No biggie

First, few users modify their laptop - ever.

Second, among those who do, not many attempt to do it themselves.

Third, they usually do it once a year.

So what's the big deal?

You might as well complain that cars are built in a way that it makes it very difficult for average users to change the engine themselves...

DARPA seeks self-aware AI robot mega-tanks

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Paris Hilton


Sometimes, you have to wonder if they believe the stuff they are writing

UK 'bad' pics ban to stretch?

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How about going back to basics?

And having law punish people only when they hurt other people?

Inventors given £1.5m by High Court

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I'm not sure I like this

To be sure, it is nice to see employees getting paid for a great contribution to their company. You even feel in this case, they should have gotten more...

However, I do not like the idea of having more and more expensive lawsuits between companies and employees who disagree on the exact amount they should be paid. In my ideal world, such compensation would be fixed by the law, and not subject to vague words like "outstanding benefits", whose meaning can be decided only in court.

BTW, saw today an ad for a management school:

"Ideas do not rule the world, but their management does"

How's that for an absolute statement of superiority of management over techies?

W3 0wnz j00r @$$

Woman sues over Vista to XP 'downgrade' charge

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I hope that after four years of lawsuit and headache, the court decides she should get her $59.25 refunded. That's all she should be entitled to, if even that.

Vladimir Putin bitchslaps Dell-boy

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I dislike Putin, but I hate people who use market speak. Actually, I hate marketeers, all of them.

Putin probably understood Dell very well, he just used it as an opportunity to tell the whole western world Russia does not need them, they need Russia.

On an another note, few people are as touchy as invalids about people asking if they need help...

Apple threatens Palm chomp

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Enter the lawyers

I remember reading that co-op buildings tend to not accept lawyers.

They don't want trouble with that species.

Seven Japanese poisoned by blowfish 'nads

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Isn't there a harmless fugu now?

I remember reading there's a different subspecies, or maybe normal fugu with a special diet, which contain no poison. But this is heavily decried by licensed restaurants who do not want to lose privilege and aura...

iPhones will win the war in Afghanistan, says NATO chief

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Paris Hilton

He forgot one little detail

The only way an Afghan can afford an iPhone is by:

- corruption,

- growing opium for heroin, or

- selling weapons to Talibans.

Now, which of the three was it?

PH, I bet she'll win the war too

Mac malware tide on the rise

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Now we get to by antivirus software for mac, and soon linux...

Deviants, perverts, 'weirdos' - who's going down?

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Paris Hilton


Au naturel is correct, as "girl in the natural way"

Well, Japan IS renowned for its dirty perverts who take pictures under the skirt and mash girls in the subway... But it's difficult to know if that is a result of porn or the reverse. Or maybe it is the traditional role of woman over there?

Google and the Great Wikipedia Feedback Loop

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Is that fiddling?

Of course they are bumping it. Who the hell puts links to Wikipedia? As far as I know, all Google wants to show is links people want to see. And it turns out that for most people, that is Wikipedia. And certainly not a pay site.

I for one do not regret it one bit. The Wikipedia page on whatever subject is usually all I need. It is free, and contains little publicity. True, the talk pages often contains the ramblings of fanatics - but that's information about the subject too.

And if you want accuracy, all you need to subscribe to the Britannica.

Infant calls cops to dad's dope plantation

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marijuana is illegal in BC?

Who would've thought?

Mine's the one with the ticket to Victoria in the pocket

SEC to probe Apple on Steve Jobs' health issues?

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Paris Hilton

Good God! The SEC is doing something?

I thought the point of SEC was to approve whatever the banking industry was doing?

Paris, because I'm sure she's doing something^H^H^H^H^Hone too

Logitech steps up job cuts

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Strong dollar

How is strong dollar affecting their exercise? They are not a US company, and are not building their products in US, so the value of the dollar should be largely irrelevant, right?

Or is it simply that the same amount of Swiss francs is worth less dollars than last year?

Govt uses Obscenity Law to stuff up cartoon sex loophole

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Let me get this straight

It is legal to create a porn movie which shows people getting raped. That's legal, so it apparently does not encourage citizens to rape everybody in sight. But it is illegal to draw teenagers screwing, because that will lead to child abuse?

WHO is pushing these ideas now? It's not like any of this is recent...

Terry Pratchett knighted for services to literature

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Congratulations to the Discworld

Even if, as is often the case, they gave it to him because his sand seemed to be running dangerously low...

How Warcraft reigned supreme in 2008

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WoW and the red queen

The longer the game stays, the more it evolves. But there is a reason WoW will ultimately fail:

Exponential expansions have an end.

A few months ago, new rules made it faster to level up to the maximum level. Of course, that was before the maximum level of 70 was changed to 80 by Wrath of the Lich King. But this hints at the main problem of WoW: They need to keep adding high-level content. This has the unfortunate, but unavoidable result that low-level areas are practically no-man's lands. The old top instances are practically unused, considering the rewards are worth next to nothing.

Blizzard has to keep generating more and more content just to retain players... in an universe which is larger and larger, but more and more empty.

Larry Wall on the Zen of Perl 6

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Paris Hilton

Larry Wall on the Zen of Perl 6

Hey, Sierra published a new Leisure Suit Larry game?

Who's that girl, Perl? I bet she's hot...

Will Paris be in it?

Web more popular than sex, says Intel

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Not getting any

It's easy to say you prefer web, when you're not getting any... I wonder how many were in this situation.

Fiat shows solar-panel wrapped 'Panda of the future'

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Design looks a lot like a Smart car

Or is it just me?


They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery... If I was the designer of the Smart, I'd feel really flattered right now.

Entire class fails IT exam by submitting in Word format

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Paris Hilton


Words fail me. How could such a stupid situation ever happen??

Paris-level of stupidity

DARPA orders 'fridge-sized' laser energy cannon

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Can't fire for more than a couple of seconds

The actual reason for not firing longer is that it is out of ammo after less than 20 seconds...

1,174 rounds in the drum; 3,900 rounds per minute.

Armed robbers take Paris jewellers for £70m

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Sounds fishy...

They knew the staff by name, and where the rest was stored?

An inside job, or indeed, an insurance job

Craiglist rant man on criminal libel rap

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But is she dead?

The article said something about "blacken the memory of one who is dead", but did not said she was dead. So what's the relation?

By the way, is it actually possible to write (as we're talking of libel and not slander) whatever you want about a dead person, since they cannot sue you back?

If I write that Churchill slept with Hitler, can I be sued for libel (or stupidity?)

Missile Defence multikill space interceptor in hover test

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What's the machine-gun sound?

For a while, I thought this is a new type of anti-personal mine designed to spray bullets all around.

Are these impulsion-based propulser, like on space shuttles (I think?)

Customs warns of killer consoles

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Doing that with Vuitton bags is one thing, doing that with a game console...

It's probably about impossible to do it without being the Chinese factory actually making the consoles for Nintendo in the first place, I would think? Maybe Nintendo should ask its suppliers a couple of questions?

I say, the only way to be sure is for some enterprising journalist to buy one of these "fakes", open it and compare!

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@Joe Montana

" No they don't... "counterfeit" goods only exist because the "originals" have excessively high profit margins, such that it is still profitable for a third party to supply the same goods at a lower price. "

Your analysis is kind of misleading, considering it can cost millions to design a new product which can be mass-produced cheap afterward.

I admit I feel Louis Vuitton bags to be way overpriced, no matter how well they're designed. But Nintendo did have to work for a long time to design the Wii... So I believe they are entitled to make a fair profit on each console (of course, definition of "fair" vary wildly)

Python 3.0 appears, strangles 2.x compatibility

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To break compatibility. This usually raises a chorus of complaints from the users...

On the other hand, it's the moment or never for me to finally learn it!

BitTorrent net meltdown delayed

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Public fora??

That's a plural I didn't see before...

About the quantity of P2P which is piracy, are there any studies made? It would seem obvious to me that most of the traffic is indeed piracy... After all, you can only download a linux distro so many times...

Satanic net neologisms - nominations invited

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I cannot stand people who say that out loud.

Especially in French.

Lori Drew guilty in MySpace bully trial

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I'm of two minds about this

On one hand, I do not believe in abusing the legal system...

On the other hand, I believe it is necessary to make people responsible of what they do and say on the web. What if they had hired a real teenager to flirt with her and dump her in the worst way possible? I am fairly certain that this would be punishable.

US couple sue over McNudes

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Might be hard

They do need to prove who put it on the net first, IMO.

Why should the tribunal believe them and not the McPeople?

Then, suing McDonald's itself is an obvious attempt in getting the

biggest amount of $$$ possible. What was the chain supposed to do?

Tell all its employee that they should respect people's privacy?

Perform complicated psychological tests on every potential employee

to check they would not do that?

I hope they get very little cash.

How Microsoft blew its own RIA invention

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There are two ways to see this

1) For once, Microsoft brought us something really nice

2) Thank God, they lost interest before screwing it up

Considering the quantity of stuff that Microsoft are said to have bastardized or mutilated to the point it was unusable crap, I guess it was for the best...

French record labels sue, um, SourceForge

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Paris Hilton


Shouldn't it be possible to sue the labels themselves for selling CDs that can be copied easily? Aren't they supposed to provide "a way to block the transfer of unauthorized copyright works"?

PH, because the lawmakers were obviously clueless

Microsoft: Windows 7 ready for Christmas 2009

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There is only one way I'll buy this...

It has to look like XP, work like XP, be reliable like XP

Oh yeah, and no DRM.

First Amendment rescues Grand Theft Auto's 'totally nude' strip club

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Paris Hilton

Hat tip to the judges

Who obviously treated correctly this example of the merkin justice system

If I stare all the time at the PH icon, does that make her a Reg editor?

Bono bikini babe party pictures loose on Facebook

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Paris Hilton


How about clicking on the link?

..Anyway whoever puts pics on their facebook profile is asking world+dog to see them...

PH icon, logically

Police collar kid for Wi-Fi pinching

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Aren't cautions for 18+ years-old?

...At least that's what some unreliable do-it-yourself encyclopedia tells me...

Oh, here's an official website giving the same info:


Criteria for a simple caution

9. When deciding if a simple caution is appropriate, a police officer must answer the following questions: [...]

*Is the suspect 18 years of age or older at the time the caution is to be administered[4]? Where a suspect is under 18, a Reprimand or Warning would be the equivalent disposal, as per the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.

Without typo-squatters, how far would Google fall?

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You've got to hand it to Google

They have what is closest to a goose that lays gold eggs. It's well and truly frightening.

Wikia layoffs ground Jimbo's imaginary jet

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actively hiring in sales and marketing

Ah... They realised they had nothing to sell, then?

Trainee teachers score F all in maths tests

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Respect for the teachers...

Would be nice to have. Results are consistently higher when students don't despise the teacher as a low-life who couldn't get a proper job.

I'm all for higher selection in hiring new teachers!

MS hit with Red Ring of Death lawsuit

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People never have something better to do, when there's a lawyer involved...

But as for suing Microsoft for software, that will be hard, after clicking on that EULA containing "Microsoft disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose"

When you click on that, it pretty much means: I know this may be shit, but I'll eat it no matter what.

McCain gets pair of personal cellphone towers

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Why, when they generate as much calls as the McCain ranch is going to in the next three weeks, they'll be welcome...

Apparently, Verizon also has a contract with the Secret Service stating they must provide anything the Secret Service asks, for free (from the NYTimes article on this). AT&T followed suit on their own, saying it would be torn down after the campaign.

Android comes with a kill-switch

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Paris Hilton

I thought this was all open source...

Why not simply remove the offensive code? Or is Google using a bastardized definition of open source which does not allow the right to modify it?

PH, because I'm clueless

How should software developers be paid?

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What developers are paid...

Very simply, they are paid as little as it takes to find somebody competent... Like all employees the world over.

"to make the hard decision and encourage that developer to explore the wider space of opportunities at other companies"

Wow, nice sentence. I prefer "give him the boot", though, it's shorter...

Verizon to charge for message termination

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Cover the costs? Yeah right

Compared to the bandwidth necessary for phone calls, SMS use about zero.

There are things Merkins do better than Europeans, but phone billings is NOT one of them. For example, suppose you see in an ad a mobile phone plan for $20 a month. When you examine the fine print, you see it means:

$20 per month for the "plan" itself

$7 per month for "network access fee" (needed to make phone calls)

$1 per month for "emergency number service" (to be able to call 911, and you have to take it)

$5 per month for a voicebox

$5 per month for caller ID (Also in order to cover the huge needs of bandwidth of the service)

With sales taxes and some more mysterious additions, you find the real cost is $45 a month...

Texan boffins working on electric cyber-heart

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Dangerous to be an early adopter...

The circulatory system is used to having a pulse. I doubt very much it can work properly without one. Even having a pulse which is too regular can cause health problems. With a regular flow, I would guess you would soon have accumulation of fat or dead blood cells in some corners, leading to the clogging of small arteries.

I predict a short lifespan for the first person using it. Or rather, I hope they test it on animals before. Yes, that's me putting the health of human beings before that of animals.

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