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* Posts by Stoneshop

3961 posts • joined 8 Oct 2009

HYPERSONIC METEOR smashes into Russia, injuring hundreds

Stoneshop
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FAIL

Re: Not a meterorite@Nigel 11

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-11500373 - 323 USA nobel prizes to the UKs 117.

Now correct that for the number of inhabitants per country.

US: slightly under 1 per million.

UK: about 1.8 per million

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Love in the time of the internet: A personal memoir

Stoneshop
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For me it was Usenet

And for a few others too, although I can't tell if there were additional ports involved there.

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Twitter translated to LOLCATZ: Strangely this had not been done

Stoneshop
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The suspension is knackered, which made Gloria barf.

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Ten 3D printers for this year's modellers

Stoneshop
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@MJI Re: I want one

Make your own model railway bits, but can I do a whole body shell?

Just look at the specs, The larger ones can probably do a H0 or TT scale model shell just fine. With scale 0 and up you'll have to break up the design into several parts, which might not be a bad strategy anyway: for a steam locomotive for instance you'd want to print the boiler vertically. For N or Z they may be too crude.

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Stoneshop
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Re: @Ogi

@annodomini

So? Hours and hours fiddling with the machine to get it right? You seem to be blissfully unaware of how much time a dedicated owner of a classic vehicle spends in maintaining it, scouring fleamarkets and swapfests for that one part they need to keep it running, keep it looking tiptop, and their budget spent on special tools and workshop equipment. Even spending days would be considered a trifle.

And some printers don't even need 'hours and hours' of fiddling to get the adjustment right. The RepRap Mendel90 we have at the hackerspace (and which I'm going to build for myself) took maybe fifteen minutes.

Yes that plastic clip for a 40-50yo car costs £20, but if you include your time, usually it's cheaper to just buy the clip and enjoy the car.

That applies only if you can still buy the damn clip in the first place. And if you need a dozen of them to hold some panel trim, printing them yourself becomes more than tempting. Plus, you can then sell them to your fellow car owners for £2, and both you and them will benefit.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Cost

@Lee Dowling

Honestly, I expect to pay £50-100 for a "homebrew" one of these (i.e. the price range of a half-decent commercial inkjet, or some large homebrew lego project), and £300-500 for a full commercial-quality one. Until then, I don't see what market they serve.

Most of the stuff you need for a 3D-printer is mechanical: rods, bearings, stepper motors and the electronics to drive them. These things are already as cheap as they can be. You may be able to skimp on the case/frame (as applicable for the design), but you'll pay in effort to get the damn thing aligned: the difference between a Mendel and a Mendel90 there is amazing, and more than offsets the somewhat higher price for the Mendel90 frame. Hotends and printbeds may get a bit cheaper still, but as those currently add up to about 25% of the total materials price tag, don't expect a price drop there to bring the total price down to your rather irrealistic expectations.

IMO, 500 Euros is quite an acceptable price for such a device.

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Stoneshop
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Re: How did they make the downward pointing dragon teeth

The slicing software (the part of the software suite that converts your 3D-model into layers so that it can actually be printed) is able to detect such overhangs and can add a support. These supports are quite flimsy, and can be broken away by hand afterwards.

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Stoneshop
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Re: MX80

Have a look at this: http://www.flickr.com/photos/digital-nuisance/8397892203/in/pool-hack42 and the adjacent pics in the pool.

(7cm high, printed on a Mendel90 with a 0.35 nozzle)

Overhangs are handled by the slicing software, the bit that converts STL to the stuff the printer understands.

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Stoneshop
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Re: No RepRap?

If you actually need the produced output (like the mentioned "no we don't make that anymore" cases), you get it from a place like http://www.emachineshop.com/ --- then you can have it in either a useful form (say metal), instead of some doubtful plastic ('has a shelf life').

The commercial shops that can print $stuff in materials other than PLA or ABS are (still) quite expensive, so you may want to print your design on one of these, test if the design actually fits, tweak it, print it again, lather, rinse, repeat, and only then send it off to be printed in the actual required material. For myself, I've printed a headlight clamp for my bike, and at the hackerspace we print (on a Mendel90) all kinds of brackets, frames and other such mounting widgets and doodads. Using PLA; its strength and durability is more than sufficient for almost all the desired applications.

Architecture firms tend to employ laser cutting to build their models (faster, and you can easily build models larger than the cutting bed size), unless it's a horribly convoluted curvy shape.

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NASA deep space probe sends back video of 'Comet of the Century'

Stoneshop
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"Hopefully there wont be to many idiots with this one."

By all means, let them go ahead and off themselves. It's not like there's an impending shortage of idiots, and there'd be no need for an "endangered species"-like protection status anyway.

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BANG and the server's gone: Man gets 8 months for destroying work computers

Stoneshop
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Re: If he really wanted to cause damage...

@Crisp

A programmer torching a server is just one of the many problems you need to guard against. The far bigger and more insiduous sabotage options involve networks, and the programmer's actual output.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Physical security of server room ?

I think 3 people have access - our BOFH, PFY and their boss.

I doubt it. It's more likely what the boss has access to is a dummy room, kitted out to look quite like the live one.

In a company that small, a missing boss will be quickly noticed.

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Boffins baffled over pulsar with 'split personality'

Stoneshop
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FAIL

Eadon

Just Fornicate Off And Decease, will you?

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IBM brains ponder universe, say kids will go nuts for STEAMPUNK

Stoneshop
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Headmaster

Duscussions?

In 160 characters per reply? And in whatever Farcebook allows?

That's clearly a definition of "discussion" which I wasn't aware of previously.

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'Leccy-starved Reg hack: 'How I survive on 1.5kW'

Stoneshop
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Re: Adversity breeds ingenuity

Everything else is just an octopus of wires joined by twisting, with red, black, grey and white being used for all the lives and neutral (as in some sockets use 2 reds, some use 2 whites, etc.).

I had a house like that. Well, almost like that; the wiring colours conformed to the current standard, but whether a particular colour actually matched its use as proscribed in the standard had a probability of one in five. You could switch the stairwell light by hitting the plasterboard wall in a particular spot.

And this was right in the middle of a big city in the Netherlands.

Don't ask about Earth; there isn't one...

Err, right beneath you?

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Stoneshop
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Re: That's 100A per phase...

That comes with 3*25 amp fuses. If you want more than that (the next step is 3*80)

Liander has a few inbetween steps and offer 3x35, 3x50 and 3x63 as well.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Buffering?

That could be done with lead acid batteries and an inverter of some description,

Commonly referred to as UPS. And there are these nifty load switchers that switch off one socket the moment you draw power from the other, kind like an inverted master-slave power strip. Meant to run your washing machine and your dryer, or a dishwasher and an under-the-sink kitchen boiler, off a single socket.

Judicious use of a couple of the above devices may keep the total load below the maximum available power, while the UPSes take care of keeping the essentials powered during popcorn-making or cement-mixing sessions.

BTW, the indicated microwave power is what is effectively radiated into your food; what is drawn from the mains can be double that.

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Lenovo, EA, Intel unite to DESTROY our childhood memories

Stoneshop
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Pirate

Re: So you'd be forced to play by the actual rules then?

Unless you crack the game program and add some code according to your rules.

Which will take cheating to the next level: who can inject his/her rules, and in addition silently neutralise others'?

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Ever had to register to buy online - and been PELTED with SPAM?

Stoneshop
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Re: Who the fuck ...

... is daft enough to purchase anything online in the first place? Can't you find it within 20 miles of where you live? If not, why the hell do you think you need it?[1]

a) because it saves money

b) because it saves time

c) because it saves both

d) you can buy 40W CO2 laser tubes twenty miles from where you live? Good for you. And no, it's not an antique machine that needs restoring.

For the record, I'm not deluged with spam. Far from it. Most is coming in via the admin address for a mailing list I manage, apparently scraped before they obfuscated the addresses on their web pages. A large part of the remainder (amounting to a few messages a day) has been scraped from Usenet some time in the past. Some is addressed to $randomstring@mydomain, and maybe a single message a day is some vendor who ignores the 'no mail' checkbox. And I've had just a single case of a vendor leaking or selling the e-mail address I gave him.

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Stoneshop
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Holmes

Re: @AC 09:03 Spam filter rules.

That filter should obviously go after the various mailing list filters.

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The amazing magical LED: Has it really been fifty years already?

Stoneshop
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Re: @heyrick

Perhaps I'm missing something, but I fail to see how having the red signal on the bottom makes any difference whatsoever to whether it can be obscured by snow.

Signals, and traffic lights, have these shadow shields that (try to) keep direct sunlight off the glass. Snow collects on them, and obscures the light above.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Every one already?

Road vehicle drivers can be red-green colour blind so position is crucial.

Or pattern, although that would need a new traffic code to go with the differently-placed lights. Like a red X for stop, a yellow - for impending stop, and a green O for go.

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Stoneshop
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Re: home lighting circuits

Well, theoretically one could, yes. As long as the LED assembly has a way to signal the controller what the maximum current is it can handle (the controller could decide to supply less, for the sake of dimming), and that way being standardised across bulbs and fixtures.

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Stoneshop
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Boffin

Re: better CRI than tungsten??

By definition, you can't beat an incandescent light on that metric

Well, actually you can, as a glowing filament is not quite a black-body radiator of the same temperature, but for all in tents and porpoises, it's close enough to moot the difference.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Bored of Blue LED now!

In the 70s and 80s, high technology came with a wooden veneer

Indeed. I do miss those rosewood- and palissander-sided mainframes of yore. Painted sheetmetal is so crude by comparison.

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Stoneshop
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Re: LED lighting instead of fluorescent 'haz mat'

The led lamp manufacturers have not yet got to this stage of development,

For values of "not yet" equal to "for several years already". It's the same principle as (C)FL, phosphors being excited by (near-)UV, so a lot of that research can (and has been) ported over. The manufacturing process for the light source is different, as is the environment for the phosphors, so that has taken a bit of effort to get right as well.

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Stoneshop
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Re: leds for home/office lighting

(a single LED replacement bulb here in the states was about $50 last I checked)

Even brand-name LED bulbs (Philips, Osram) here are nearly an order of magnitude cheaper, and you can get off-brand bulbs for not much more than CFL prices (about 2..3Euros).. Either you've checked the wrong places, or someone's fleecing you guys *HARD*.

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Stoneshop
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Go

Re: I'm waiting for the black LED

No problem. Just apply the voltage from four or five D cells, a 12V wallwart or in the most stubborn cases, a car battery straight to the LED pins (positive to anode). Caution: may cause SEDs (Smoke Emitting Diodes), small pieces of plastic flying off, unintended blackness elsewhere, unintended malfunction elsewhere, lack of device feedback, itchy rashes, full body hair loss, projectile vomiting, gigantic eyeball, the condition known as 'hot dog fingers,' children born with the head of a golden retriever, seeing the dead, bone liquification, possession by the Prince of Darkness, tail growth, elderly pregnancy, back pain and a runny nose.

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Stoneshop
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Boffin

"Liquid Crystal Diode (LCD)"

FAIL.

LCD stands for Liquid Crystal Display, and there's nothing diode-y about them: it's a liquid crystal that changes the polarisation of light passing through it when they're subjected to an electric field through two electrodes. That field has to be flipped periodically to keep up the crystal alignment,

With this, and the total fail of understanding semiconductors, I wonder what the author's qualifications are for writing such an article.

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Stoneshop
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Re: LED lighting instead of fluorescent 'haz mat'

your average 2300k "warm white" CFL.

You'll find that even warm-white CFLs are more like 3200K, trying to be equivalent to your average incandescent bulb (when not severely dimmed)

I find LED street lighting here to have a definite pale-greenish tinge. Apparently this has now been found to drive nightly critters, especially bats, ehm, batty, and the newest units have lost the greenish hue and emit a more whiter, slightly blueish light.

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Stoneshop
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Re: @Tom 7 LED is fantastic

Sharply defined blue is NOT fine.

That bit was not about light sources, it was about amplifier valves. Which are not primarily meant as illumination.

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Stoneshop
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Boffin

Re: Home & Work Light?

they are essentially integrated green, red and blue units in the proper balance to approximate white light to a human eye.

They're not. "White" LEDs are essentially UV or near-UV (single-colour) LEDs with fluorescent coating. Some coating mixtures are better than others at providing a not-awfully-gappy spectrum, but it's still discontinuous, like, well, fluorescents. Another issue is that the coating degrades with use, although it tends to keep up well beyond the life that most incandescents have anyway.

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Stoneshop
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Re: Duck tape

Indeed, branded Duck tape's the best.

Well, if you ignore Nishiban.

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Stoneshop
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Re: @Will Godfrey Every one already?

Err, to an extent. Most conventional-bulbed traffic lights here use the common E27 screw socket with a robust bulb of appropriate wattage, and a mirrored reflector. Some types of replacement LED modules I've seen are just a PCB of the appropriate diameter, filled with 5mm LEDs of the appropriate colour, and mounted directly behind the front glass, so it'd be more than just a simple "swap the bulb".

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Kickstarted mobe charger 'kicked to death by Apple'

Stoneshop
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So

You build these things with just a USB-A socket in the place you would have put the Lightning cord come out, order a sufficient number of USB-Lihtning cables *) and adapt the design a bit so that the cable can be locked in place. Bundle the charger with the Lightning cable, done.

*) readily available from your Chinese tat-vendor site of choice, such as this one: http://dx.com/p/8-pin-lightning-male-to-micro-usb-female-adapter-for-iphone-5-mini-ipad-ipod-touch-5-white-175459

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Rampaging gnu crashes Microsoft Store, hands out literature

Stoneshop
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FAIL

Re: Missing an important point...

Most average shoppers don't care. They just want applications that work - as in 'can be installed without a week wasted dealing with toolchains, dependencies, distro differences and other DIY nonsense.'

1997 called, they want their argument back.

For the past five or six years I haven't had to compile any mainstream application, or a kernel, for any of the 'production' (as opposed to experimental) installs I've done. So neither would most of those average shoppers.

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Dead Steve Jobs' mega yacht seized by testy Philippe Starck

Stoneshop
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Re: iSore

In fact it's the ugliest *anything* I've ever seen.

You are unaware of the Fiat Multipla? Good for you.

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Stoneshop
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FAIL

Re: Wrong assumption

The one who designed it is not the one who had it built, so that's you who's made a wrong assumption. Even if the designer hasn't yet received a single penny, he has no title to the floating thingie. That would lie with either the builder, or the person who ordered the floating showoff thingie, depending on the amount of money that had moved from the latter to the former and the contract between them.

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Lego quad-copter: your ultimate drone nightmare

Stoneshop
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Re: Just cool.

you could be that dad

Well, in my case, no.

I have barely enough time for projects like this, and then to have offspring claiming time? No thanks.

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PGP, TrueCrypt-encrypted files CRACKED by £300 tool

Stoneshop
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Re: Go backwards with storage technology - not forwards!

True it takes me 3 hours to access a pic from a set of microcassettes

And how many of them do you need to store one Scarlett Johansson snap?

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Stoneshop
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Re: that reminds me...

one powerline data plug

As said, why would they only find one? But then, why powerline? It's almost a given you already have wireless. A small storage widget connecting to your WLAN router, with remote power off so that it won't in any way announce itself when it really shouldn't. If it doesn't have rotating disks it'll have very modest power requirements, and temperature will be of little concern either, so you could stick it in just about anything that you can get a low-voltage DC power feed to, like a garden gnome with a LED-lit lantern in its hand.

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US patent office: Nice try Apple, but pinch-to-zoom is NOT a new invention

Stoneshop
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Re: Apple=Bastards

Water=wet.

Any more revealing insights?

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Boffins spot planet that could support life... just 12 light years away

Stoneshop
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Re: How far away, far far far away

What's Tera doing in a swimming pool full of carbonara sauce?

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Facebook: 'No merit' to claim we broke German privacy law

Stoneshop
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Re: Real names are pretty irrelevant ...

Well, if they gave a toss about who you know, and who knows you, then they would embrace aliases and nicknames. Plenty of people I know online are better (and often exclusively) known by their alias; and would be close to anonymous under their real name (and therefore nearly worthless as marketing data).

Then there the funny bit about what actually constitutes real names; I know quite a few whose official name was deemed fake by G+ and/or farcebook. And that's not even taking into account that names are apparently only acceptable if they conform to US standard; registration forms can't deal with prefixes (like 'von der'), double surnames (quite common in Spain) and short surnames like Ng almost universally are flagged fake too.

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Chinese spacecraft JUUUUST avoids smashing into Toutatis

Stoneshop
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Re: Nuking?

That's 'These Romans Americans are crazy!' for the English-speaking parts of the world

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Happy birthday, transistor

Stoneshop
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Re: I remember spreading the legs of a BC107 .....

Mullard OC44/45/71 transistors were solid plastic

At least one other manufacturer used glass, not unlike a miniature vacuum tube. I remember gingerly cracking one of those, and ending up with a freestanding junction transistor, and a glass tube with a bit of silicone grease in it. I think I made a photo of it, even.

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Sinclair ZX Spectrum FAILS latest radio noise rules SHOCK

Stoneshop
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Boffin

Re: self-oscilating

You're right about the circuit. Strange thing is that if they had run 9VAC into the machine, they could have had their 12V and -5V without faffing with that oscillator, just simple diodes, caps and regulators. There would have been a larger smoothing cap inside the Speccy (maybe a few smaller ones in parallel according to available space), but apparently the way it was done was the absolute cheapest.

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Goldman Sachs: Windows' true market share is just 20%

Stoneshop
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Re: Exactly the opposite of what happened 15, 20 years ago:

Sorry, but the CP/M crowd wasn't that big, and was mostly limited to hobbyists and the odd user who had the forward-looking nous to realise that these things were (or at least could be) a spiffy typewriter, an even spiffier calculator and a filing cabinet rolled into one. I know of exactly one non-hobbyist back then (around 1980) who had a computer (a Bondwell portable IIRC) for writing documents and doing spreadsheets. All the other computers around were Atoms, ZX81's and whatever one could find in kit form, with the occasional Apple ][, then Speccy's, BBC's and just about everything else that came along. Usually those systems lived in a nest of flatcables between DIY peripherals.

When the PC hit the market and started being deployed around offices a lot of companies offered projects where you could buy a PC to use at home, at a reduced price and tax-deductable. And Microsoft jumped on that bandwagon with both feet, allowing you to use WIndows and Office at home if your employer had a business license. IMO the latter is what strongly contributed to the self-sustaining inertia of the Windows environment.

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Stoneshop
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Linux

Re: @Khaptain 15:03

The core of my work is done in character cell terminals. A good chunk of the remainder is by browser, although to get access to those systems I need to open a remote desktop to some Windows crate on the other side of a firewall. Most of those browser-accessed systems tell you to use $DEPRECATED_VERSION of IE, but Firefox (sometimes with its browser identification set to $DEPRECATED_VERSION of IE) works just as well.

Actual Windows stuff that I currently run on my desktop at work is a problem tracking tool, Outlook, and Office, but there's a WTS I can use for that (a lot of Office stuff is closely tied to Sharepoint, so I suspect that LibreOffice is not quite a viable alternative).

There's no need for me to have Windows on my desktop, and if the stupid thing karks once more it won't be on my desktop anymore.

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Stoneshop
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Re: @mutatedwombat

The spread of "not Microsoft" in the consumer sphere will eventually erode Microsoft's dominance in the corporate sphere.

Exactly the opposite of what happened 15, 20 years ago: people got PC's with Windows (and before that, DOS for some) on their desk at work, and for compatibility and familiarity reasons chose that for their home system; for some early adopters it may well have worked the other way and as the "computer-knowledgeable one" got to influence the setup of their office environment.

What happened then is happening again now, and this time Microsoft is not the one offering the new options.

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