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* Posts by John 110

424 posts • joined 10 Aug 2009


Tech support discovers users who buy the 'sh*ttest PCs known to Man' struggle with basics

John 110

25 years of IT support... a laboratory where Louis Pasteur would recognise the techniques we use.

* One poor soul couldn't understand why that big silver DELL button didn't turn the computer on.

* Our office manager (who could lay out documents on a typewriter that you would swear had been professionally typeset) kept all her correspondence in a single Word file (5 for DOS, then kept the practice up when we transitioned to 2.0 on Win 3.11).

* A friend who took early retirement rather than have to face using a PC every day.

It's easy to mock these people, especially when we work in a high-tech environment, but like I say, I've worked 45 years in a microbiology lab (25 of those in IT support) and the technological changes we've seen in that time have been unbelievable (look up MALDI-TOF). The pc revolution just seemed like one more thing to cope with for some people.

These days of course, we're sitting people down in front of desktop PCs using keyboard oriented software, when their computing experience is mainly stabbing their finger at a phone or iPad. Still, keeps me in a job (until next year)

Huawei MateBook Pro X: PC makers look out, the phone guys are here

John 110

Re: I rather like it, but for one detail

Acer aspire?

Oh, I wish it could be Black Friday every day-aayyy, when the wallets start jingling but it's still a week till we're paiii-iid

John 110

Re: Interesting...

"I did this morning, it wasn't so bad. Got some milk and a croissant. They weren't on offer though."

But were they Black...

Wombats literally sh!t bricks – and now boffins reckon they know how

John 110

Re: Wombats shit bricks?

"...Are they like LEGO bricks? Can you build with them?..."

Some bright geneticist could probably genetically-engineer one to produce bright, colourful bricks. I'll email the university now, they're always looking for PhD theses suggestions.

Brexit: UK will be disconnected from EU databases after 2020

John 110

Is it just me or... it like watching one of those slo-motion crashes beloved of Mythbusters fans everywhere...

Watchdog sceptical's Universal Credit can handle 8.5m benefits claimants

John 110

Re: Outsourcing


You forgot the Joke icon .. oh wait you're right....

With sorry Soyuz stuffed, who's going to run NASA's space station taxi service now?

John 110

Re: No worries

""I'm surprised we haven't already done the 'space force' thing, actually."

You have. It's called USAF Space Command."

Yeah, but they run the Stargate program and you can't use that to get to Earth orbit unless you gate to a planet with a goa'uld mothership (and that would be bad)

Does Google make hardware just so nobody buys it?

John 110

Re: If you build it will they come?

Like this?

30-up: You know what? Those really weren't the days

John 110

Re: Alternative 2018 floppy disc put-down

I'm looking at a stack of 3½" floppies now. It's next to the DC2120 tapes and those halogen MR16 bulbs I can't give away. The USB drive is over there under my Hudl...

It's a mug's game: Watch AI robot grab a cuppa it hasn't seen before

John 110

Re: Meh

Let's see it bring 4 pints from the bar without taking a sip from each... to prevent spillage obviously.

NASA 'sextortionist' allegedly tricked women into revealing their password reset answers, stole their nude selfies

John 110

"Good grief. Is there anyone who ISN'T keeping nude pictures of themselves online these days?!"

Tentatively raises hand, unsure as to what the cool answer would be...

Trainer regrets giving straight answer to staffer's odd question

John 110



I've got one you can have if we ever get our lab system to print wide carriage worksheets on a laser...

BlackBerry, Sony, Honor and LG flash their new phones for all to see

John 110

Re: My next move...

Probably, it's a predictable move for ACs

Sysadmin sank IBM mainframe by going one VM too deep

John 110

As A scientist...

As a scientist I resent that... wait no, as you were. I'll start again.

As a scientist I resemble that remark!

Leatherbound analogue password manager: For the hipster who doesn't mind losing everything

John 110

Just do what the NHS does...

You fool!! Now everyone knows!!! I'll have to start putting a 2 on the end now!!!! (or some more exclamation marks!!!!!)

Drug cops stopped techie's upgrade to question him for hours. About everything

John 110

Re: Collective of IT managers?

Where I live, it's a squabble of IT managers... Or sometimes a snigger of IT managers (when we gang up on somebody)

Happy birthday, you lumbering MS-DOS-based mess: Windows 98 turns 20 today

John 110


...birthday dear Register (etc)

Great news, cask beer fans: UK shortage of CO2 menaces fizzy crap taking up tap space

John 110

Re: Bravo madam!

"...We have a left wing government..."

Wait!! What??

NASA finds more stuff suggesting Mars could have hosted life, maybe

John 110

Re: And the remnants had fled to Earth.

James Blish's Fallen Star perhaps?

Four hydrogen + eight caesium clocks = one almost-proven Einstein theory

John 110

Re: This is why science rocks

"but if you have to sully it with water at least do it the honour of using spring water and not that chemically tainted tap excretion...."

Is that spring water that you collected yourself from an actual spring (NOT downhill from a sheepdip pit!) or Spring Water that some other bugger has bottled from HIS tap just for you (and your wallet)?

Just curious.

Personally I wouldn't put anything in whisky, but if I'm forced to drink water...

John 110

Re: This is why science rocks

I find tap water much better when diluted with a malt whisky - There, fixed that for you.

AIOps they did it again, played with your heart, new acronym shame

John 110


....I watched too much of "the Goodies" in the 70's, but my first response to AIOps was "ecky thump"

You should find out what's going on in that neural network. Y'know they're cheating now?

John 110

Re: Such problems were known _way_ before the current hype

I think your early game was "Pangolins" and it was in the ZX Spectrum programming manual (Y/n)

Make masses carry their mobes, suggests wig in not-at-all-creepy speech

John 110
Big Brother

You said it first...

John 110

@Richard 81 "So, one day my habit of keeping the GPS of my phone off to save the battery will get me in hot water?"

I wouldn't worry about it - it only LOOKS like your GPS is off...

John 110

My phone!!

Public - "Not carry my phone! It's vital to my everyday life!! You can't expect me to do without it!!!"

Gov - "No we mandate that you MUST carry it at all times"

Public - "Sod that!!!!" (throws phone in drawer...)

45-day drone flights? You are like a little baby. How about a full YEAR?

John 110

Re: 45 days vs 365

They've got to land it to change the film cartridge (or SD card if you want to be needlessly "modern")

Sysadmin unplugged wrong server, ran away, hoped nobody noticed

John 110

"...If you unplugged it at the server..."

Aah, the benefit of 20 years of hindsight. I wish I'd had that in my 20's...

Gmail is secure. Netflix is secure. Together they're a phishing threat

John 110

Re: Although...

It's good to know I'm not alone, although I put it down to carelessness on the part of someone giving their email address. These days I just delete the emails, but I have been known to report them to abuse@ whoever sent them, and once I went the extra mile to inform a doctor's practise in California that their patient was never going to turn up for surgery... (That was hard, due to a reluctance on the part of the practise to put any contact details on the website that didn't need logged in to, and I wasn't going to phone them)

Happy 100th birthday to the Royal Air Force

John 110

Re: What about Martin Baker?


Interesting thread you linked to. Thanks.

Having read the first couple of pages, the reaction to the prosecution seems mixed, but the consensus seems to be that it was the right thing to do.

[disclaimer] I was too lazy^h^h^h^hbusy to read the whole thread, so opinion may have shifted towards the end.

John 110

Re: What about Martin Baker?

The same Martin Baker that knew about a technical flaw since 1990 and didn't bother to mention it?

Autonomous vehicle claims are just a load of hot air… and here's why

John 110


"...horrors the Brits perpetrate when making/serving coffee. ;-)"

Coffee bag in a mug. Add boiling water. Risk blistered fingers by dunking it about a bit until it's cooled enough to drink. Drink slowly, leaving bag in mug to achieve a turkish level of strength by the time you get to the end.

What's wrong with that?

Galileo, Galileo, Galileo, off you go: Snout of UK space forcibly removed from EU satellite trough

John 110


"Now England will pay a price for such self-serving petty politics"

I think you mean the United Kingdom. (The bit I live in voted Remain and will pay a price for England's self-serving petty politics)

Five things you need to know about Microsoft's looming Windows 10 Spring Creators Update

John 110

the 1980's called...

I miss my Amiga...

A ghoulish tale of pigs, devs and docs revived from the dead

John 110

Re: Lesson

Unfortunately out here somewhere, we sometimes find ourselves in the situation where the old license runs out before the replacement software is quite ready for primetime - but we have to go live anyway...

Japan's Robo-Bartenders point to a golden future

John 110

Heard in the pub I used to work in (working class - Scottish)

"Could you fit a nip in there?"


"Well top it up then, I asked for a Pint"

Tradition was to hand over the first pint while filling the rest, the punter would drink the first mouthful, then ask for a topup (used the honesty principle to ensure that the first mouthful wasn't pint-sized)

Ah the seventies - where did they go?

Capita contract probed after thousands of clinical letters stuffed in a drawer somewhere

John 110

Meanwhile in NHS Tayside...

The Tory MSP for NE Scotland is complaining about £100,000 worth of uneaten food in Tayside hospitals, claiming it's " further evidence of the health board’s inefficiency"

Oh - and it's not privatised...

It kinda puts a bill for £6m for sorting out a cock-up into perspective, eh.

It's 2018 and your Macs, iPhones can be pwned by playing evil music

John 110


...since 1975 has been evil music...

NHS OKs offshoring patient data to cloud providers stateside

John 110

Re: Whatever next?

You know that's not funny, right?

UK drone collision study didn't show airliner window penetration

John 110

Re: Missing the point

"... soon it will ban burps..."

And so they bloody should! Global warming!! Greenhouse gases!!!

Proposed Brit law to ban b**tards brandishing bots to bulk-buy tickets

John 110

Re: Promoters culpable?

"...instead of letting the free market solve it..."

Because the free market isn't solving it, perhaps?

Google asks browser rival Vivaldi to post uninstall instructions

John 110

Re: Email?

If you go to there's a wee link to webmail at the top. Once you've registered, you can use your client of choice with IMAP or POP to access the mail.

Or is that not what you mean? Are you looking for a (proper) Opera-like built in client?

Disk drive fired 'Frisbees of death' across data centre after storage admin crossed his wires

John 110

Re: Nah. We were civilized, no rodeo in the data center.


"/me wonders where the IT angle is on this one..."

They had a light, and a plug! of course they were IT equipment!!

John 110

Re: Nah. We were civilized, no rodeo in the data center.

Not drives, but lab centrifuges. - We were taught to "balance" these by adding a tube opposite the one we were spinning containing a carefully measured (by eye) level of water. One day somebody (else) forgot... The centrifuge walked off the bench and was wandering across the floor when somebody had the presence of mind to turn it off at the wall.

And don't talk to me about ultra-centrifuges...

BOFH: The trouble with, er, windows installs

John 110

Re: Database Normalisation Warning

You've got windows!! Bastard!!!

This is peak AI: Bot to guest edit Radio 4's Today programme

John 110

I was hoping....

....for something like Max Headroom :(

We need a Max Headroom icon!

UK Home Sec thinks a Minority Report-style AI will prevent people posting bad things

John 110

Re: Count me unimpressed

"Maybe millions of housepersons watch porn whilst doing the ironing?"

I wouldn't, not near a hot iron...

User asked help desk to debug a Post-it Note that survived a reboot

John 110

@amused of DukeStreet

They still talk as much, but the actual information content drops the longer they talk...

Seldom used 'i' mangled by baffling autocorrect bug in Apple's iOS 11

John 110
Thumb Up

Re: After near 2 years

I think you'll find that "heid" is a perfectly good word north of the Tweed.

Usage : "awa an bile yir heid"

You're probably right about 'mangled malapropisms' unless the OP's family were trying to point out hilarious stuff that other people texted them with and inadvertently auto-corrected it to something legible...

ATM fees shake-up may push Britain towards cashless society

John 110


I live a cashless life as well, but not in a good way...


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