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* Posts by Ledswinger

7418 posts • joined 1 Jun 2012

Palliative care for Windows 10 Mobile like a Crimean field hospital, but with even less effort

Ledswinger
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Re: "The goal is to make the users the beta testers"

Thereby the whole MS approach to Windows is something built on a pile of bullshit, and a total lack of understanding

I wish. Their financial results suggest there's no negative consequences from their shoddy software and exploitative business model. Microsoft are the modern day IBM, and second raters rightly conclude that nobody ever got fired for buying crapware.

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Yikes. UK military looking into building 'fully autonomous' killer drone tech – report

Ledswinger
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Re: MoD insists there will always be a human at the wheel

Quote from MoD: Our weapons will always be under human control as an absolute guarantee of oversight, authority and accountability."

Question for MoD: If that's the case, what machine, animal or fungus is controlling the procurement programme that you Total And Utter Fuckwits are running?

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Brit boffins build 'quantum compass'... say goodbye to those old GPS gizmos, possibly

Ledswinger
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Re: It's not a compass.

It's a shame they don't give any clues about the accuracy, or predictions about the timescale to make something commercially viable,

The MoD are funding it, so I'll guess never, even if it turns out to have no military applications.

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That amazing Microsoft software quality, part 97: Windows Phone update kills Outlook, Calendar

Ledswinger
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Re: I am genuinely shocked

Sub £100 I can't comment, but a Xiaomi Mi A1 can be had new off Fleabay for a tad over £130

Oops, I meant Mi A2 Lite. As Chinese phone followers will know, marginal differences in designation sometimes mean vast differences in spec, sometimes none at all. The Mi A1's lowest price is around £150, the Mi A2 Lite can be found as low as £120.

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Ledswinger
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Re: I am genuinely shocked

anyone got any recommendations for a Lineage-supported sub-£100 phone?

Sub £100 I can't comment, but a Xiaomi Mi A1 can be had new off Fleabay for a tad over £130, and I believe has Lineages support.

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Bloodbath as Broadcom slashes through CA Technologies personnel

Ledswinger
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Re: As ye sow, so shall ye reap

This is what Atlassian does and they haven't even been bought.

Yet. The world of enterprise software is always consolidating. Their turn will come.

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Bloke jailed for trying to blow up UK crypto-cash biz after it failed to reset his account password

Ledswinger
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Re: A note to USAian authors

So thanks to you, we can't win either way. I almost want to wish you, and other tedious pendants, a most unhappy weekend.

I remember when "biting the hand that feeds it" referred to a lack of reverence for the IT industry, rather than for the eyeballs that pay the staff's salaries.

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GDPR USA? 'A year ago, hell no ... More people are open to it now' – House Rep says EU-like law may be mulled

Ledswinger
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Re: Inquiring minds

Is there any chance the EU could modify theirs to compromise, assuming that's needed?

You think weaker data protection might be needed? Wow.

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Ledswinger
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This will happen as companies really are scared of massive fines.

The sarcasm is strong in this one.

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One UI to end gropes: Samsung facelift crowns your thumb the king

Ledswinger
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Bastards still won't learn

this year's Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ will receive the update but not apparently last year's Galaxy S8 and S8+

'nuff said.

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Watchdog slams political data slurpers' 'disturbing disregard' for voters' privacy

Ledswinger
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Re: Thing is, this was foreseen.

the few voters in marginals that actually cause an election result go one way or another would effectively gift the election to whoever could influence those few

I think you'll find that all political parties have known this for many decades - you only have to look at both Labour & Conservative bringing in foreign "electoral gurus" to do their campaign strategy over decades. And before technology looked useful to the politicians they still segmented voters in marginal seats, hence segments like Mondeo Man and Worcester Woman.

The ability to specifically target individuals through technology is certainly new, but since all political parties are at it, it becomes something of a zero sum game that isn't materially different to previous elections.

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FYI NASA just lobbed its Parker probe around the Sun in closest flyby yet: A nerve-racking 15M miles from the surface

Ledswinger
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Re: Burning question

At that distance from the Sun, the sheep would be cindered on the outside before the middle was cooked, because flesh is a poor conductor of heat, so I don't think that flinging sheep at the Sun would ever result in any uniform state of ROAST = 1.

You could apply a heat shield to the sheep, but that seems to defeat the point of your question.

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Setback for Qualcomm: It has to license modem tech to competitors

Ledswinger
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Re: Those living in glass houses shouldn't throw stones

Ain't that true.

Indeed. And for all the madness we see from the US legal system, it is good to see that they do have some very, very good judges. I've not been following Ms Koh's activities closely, but any time I see her name associated with a judgement it seems to be the sorts of thing that gets judges a good name.

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If Shadow Home Sec Diane Abbott can be reeled in by phishers, truly no one is safe

Ledswinger
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Re: I doubt she'll ever be Home Secretary, but...

"[...] knowledge of the debilitating damage that previous "proper socialist" Labour governments did to this country, [...]" You mean things like the NHS, free Education, State pensions?

Actually I was thinking of things like the complete destruction of a world class industrial and commercial base through muddle headed nationalisation, that begot such champions as British Leyland, British Aircraft Corporation, British Railways, British Steel etc.

I was thinking of messing up the public finances in the 1970s to the point that the Bank of England had to suspend sterling from foreign exchange markets, and this country had to be bailed out by the IMF like any other third world socialist banana republic. ANd worth thinking that the clowns of the Labour Party had repeated financial crises all through the late 1950s, 60s and 70s that led to repeated devaluations of sterling.

I was thinking of criminal, traitorous stupidity like selling Rolls Royce jet engines to the Soviet Union.

I was thinking of Labour Party pacifism during the 1930s and their opposition to rearmament that encouraged He Who Must Not Be Named.

I was thinking of marginal tax rates so punitive that the UK suffered an appalling brain drain during the 1970s.

I was thinking of the Labour Party's rank incompetence at managing industrial relations, leading to repeated crippling strikes, culminating in the Winter of Discontent.

I was thinking of incompetently handling Northern Ireland during Wilson's first two governments and to all intents kicking off thirty years of domestic terrorism.

And for a party that's made such cheap political capital over the Windrush scandal, you might want to look up the Commonwealth Immigration Act of 1968.

Every time we get a Labour government (and this was true of the post-socialism Blair/Brown comedy act), they go and fuck up the economy and government finances. That is sadly a matter of historical fact. Its all very well having these grand spending plans on social welfare, they do have some merit. But the Left have never, and apparently will never, understand that as a longer term plan you can't spend money you haven't got, and seizing other people's money through taxation or expropriation is not a long term plan either.

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Ledswinger
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Re: I doubt she'll ever be Home Secretary, but...

That's in the gift of the PM.

True, but ms Abbott is now a Labour grandee, and part of their intellectual talent pool. If he wins, Corbyn will be accused of misogyny and racism is she doesn't get one of the top three Cabinet jobs, which are the Treasury, Home Office, Foreign Office. Even Corbyn's not going to let her be chancellor, and with her renowned brains and diplomacy he can't afford to let her loose abroad.

And looking at the rest of the Labour front bench, who else is there?

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Ledswinger
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Re: I doubt she'll ever be Home Secretary, but...

I doubt she'll ever be Home Secretary

Given the complete pig's ear the Conservatives are making of all aspects of governing the country, I wouldn't be so sure.

There's also a worrying proportion of the electorate with no recollection or knowledge of the debilitating damage that previous "proper socialist" Labour governments did to this country, and who will be thinking that Corbyn is a nice principled man, surely his ideas are worth a try.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Eh?

Failing to spot an IT security problem does not make you "thick as mince." Unless maybe you are an IT security pro, and then only maybe.

My eighty year old parents, with no IT training whatsoever know these things are scams. Anybody that pays any attention to the news knows they are scams. If you think that you need to be an IT Pro to spot this particular scam, then maybe this is the wrong forum for you?

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European Union divided over tax on digital tech giants as some member states refuse free money

Ledswinger
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Re: VAT

anothercynic: Please. Who are you kidding? *Every* company employs a number of accountants who, whenever something in the tax law changes, look at how it can improve the company profit margin and minimise tax exposure. It's *not* just 'largely American' companies who do this. Every company does it.

You miss the point. every company should try to minimise its tax costs within the law. However, a small number of most US companies take this to a ridiculous extreme, exploiting the intangibility of their services to dishonestly claim that they make little or no profit in EU markets. I work for an energy supplier. We could, in theory, set everything up so that the contracts flow through offshore companies to dodge virtually all UK corporation tax, but we don't; we do however look to ensure that we claim all legitimate offsets, and to undertake our business in a manner that is mindful of the tax impacts.

However, I'd agree that shoddy law making is to blame. And more importantly, failure by politicians to react quickly - the world changes, you can't expect laws written years ago to always be fit for purpose. Yet this has been going on for years, and the Morons of Westminster have sat on their dumb fat arses and done little or nothing. At least Hammond has finally made a tiny belated and deferred start.

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Ledswinger
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Re: VAT

sales tax, is the only fair way to tax big companies

SOME big companies.

I work for a company with a multi billion turnover in a commodity sector with thin margins. We already pay all of our taxes according to law, we have no offshore Dutch-double-Irish-NewJersey-Caymans quad decker sandwich tax arrangements.

As a matter of common sense, corporate taxes should be on profit (if anything, but that's another argument), and the problem here is that a small number of largely American companies are exploiting technicalities to transfer profits. Punish those fuckers, not those who already pay their fair share.

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Premiere Pro bug ate my videos! Bloke sues Adobe after greedy 'clean cache' wipes files

Ledswinger
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I'm sure the Reg will follow this with interest. Being the US' chaotic justice system, this could go either way. His exposure is normally limited to his own legal costs (unlike English civil law systems where the loser usually pays the winning sides legal costs). That makes it much easier for the small guy to sue the big corporations (can you imagine trying to sue Google in the UK courts?), but equally it combines viciously with no win, no fee arrangements to encourage vexatious and meritless cases, and that's further amplified by the US principle of punitive damages.

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'Blockchain SAVED my Quango'

Ledswinger
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Re: The one use

One use? The only use of blockchain is a means of parting fools from their (or in this case taxpayer's) money. And you don't even have to use it for it be effective - all that's required is to generate a load of baseless waffle about technology, change, digital disruption and the rest, make some loose recommendations, and then go and bank the cheque.

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Apple replaces boot-loop watchOS edition with unconnected complications edition

Ledswinger
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176 Mb

Far out.

This is a watch, and if there's 176Mb there's what...around 2-3 million lines of code? No wonder it's fucked.

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Cisco swings the axe on permanent staff – hundreds laid off worldwide this week

Ledswinger
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Re: Open roles unfulfilled

A much smarter move would have been to encourage the best (those which the employer would like to retain) to apply for other positions and laying off the remainder in complete teams after cherry picking.

A nice idea. But in my rather-too-considerable experience of these matters, employers don't have a fucking clue who their best employees are.

When "cherry picking" all they do is pick those whose face (or figure) fits - if those people are lucky, they've just been picked for brown nosing, or for their ability to avoid any accountability or controversy. If they're unlucky, they've been picked because the boss fancies them (or worse, the boss's boss fancies them).

And that inability to identify talent is universal across large companies. Many of you fellow commentards will, like me, work for big corporates whose HR team operate a "talent pool" scheme. And like me you may have seen enough to know that talent pool schemes work well for those in them, despite the fact that talent is rarely evidenced by those people, who tend to be uncontroversial, risk averse box tickers who subscribe to whatever corporate groupthink is current, and are skilled at the latest in-house buzzword bingo.

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iPhone XR, for when £1,000 is just too much for a smartmobe

Ledswinger
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Re: I’m Struggling…

I have a (real) camera so the built in shooter is not required.

I agreed with the rest of your comment, but the age old adage is that when asking a professional photographer what their best camera is, they'll reply "the one I have with me at the time".

So whilst as somebody versed (and indeed dipped) in silver halide and developer solution I follow your logic, there is a place for smartphone cameras, I'd just like them to be substantially better than they are.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Summary: too dear, too big, too heavy

It'd help if I'd got the abbreviation correct:

TD, TB, TH; DB.

But such is the outcome of trying to input on a smartphone on a bumpy train ride, ever mindful of the next imminent dead zone.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Summary: too dear, too big, too heavy

A new shorthand is born

TN,TB,TH:DB

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Ledswinger
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Re: Weak reception is a serious fault

Except that we don't know whether the reception is that poor. Like most journalists reviews this is anecdotal and subjective. That's not a bad thing but it does point up the limited availability of objective testing and data.

And apparently consumers don't care. Their idea of "specification" is a list of screen resolution, a totally unrealistic battery life, and puff about the internals that few actually understand.

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Ledswinger
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Re: In Android land

"The XR's SoC is built on the latest 7nm process, just like the XS, XS Max."

So what? I couldn't care less about tech willy waving, all that counts is price and performance, and the review is quite clear that this is poor value for money unless the buyer puts huge value on the fact that it is an Apple device.

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GCSE computer science should be exam only, says Ofqual

Ledswinger
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Re: Oh, please...

"Your university degree certificate does not signify that you have learned anything. It signifies that you are _CAPABLE_ of learning".

Your dad may have been right for his students, more broadly there's a degree of empirical evidence strutting around (particularly in management consultancies) that suggests that many degrees do not signify any learning capability beyond rote. And for me, there's a big difference between rote learning, and understanding, applying, evolving.

All examinations have a fundamental problem that they overly reward those who have good memories and can write quickly. In the real world those aren't completely useless, but there's far more useful attributes. Most organisations use exam results to filter, and as a filtering tool they are very poor other than as a pretend "objective screen".

IT has (hitherto) been a curious profession, occupied by people who drifted into it because they wanted in, or because they were good at it. Few got in on exam results. I'd argue that's a good thing.

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British fixed broadband is cheap … and, er, fairly nasty – global survey

Ledswinger
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Re: 5G depressing investment?

IMHO you shouldn't get your hopes up for 5G, because the investment needs are considerable on the wireless side, and to supplant fixed line it would generally need a huge backhaul upgrade. Even then roll out will be a repeat of 4G: marketing led, metropolitan areas first, with notspots penciled in for the thirty second of Never, in the year 2065.

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Ledswinger
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Maybe neither ironic, nor sad, just a sensible choice based on cost and need. I'm on a 200 Mbps VM connection, but other than for infrequent large, multi thread downloads on fast servers the entire household probably doesn't push above 30 Mbps. The only reasoni don't downgrade is that VM packages and discount mean I would save nothing.

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ZX Spectrum reboot scandal man sits on Steve Bannon design tech shindig committee

Ledswinger
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Coat

Re: Do not pre-order a sex robot off this man!

It'll never come.

That doesn't matter, you're the one that's supposed to......

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Imperial bringing in budget holograms to teach students

Ledswinger
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it's not like the students are paying £9,250 per year each for the privilege.

They most certainly are not.

This is Imperial College Business School we're speaking about. Most of the courses will be postgraduate MBAs that have no state contribution to their costs. A one year full time face to face course is £52,000k. Even a poxy two year distance learning course is over £15k a year.

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Icahn't let you do this: Stock botherer fires off sueball to scupper Dell's 'coercive' deal

Ledswinger
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Re: Icahn for Fraud

He is driven by insatiable greed

Would seem to be true. Icahn is reportedly worth around $18bn, and still the leech can't stop trying to take money off other people. We should pity the poor bugger rather than hate him.

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Great. Global internet freedoms take another dive as censorship and fake news proliferate

Ledswinger
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Re: It all depends on what you call "Freedom" and "Democracy"

As anyone who lives in the UK will attest when it comes to 24/7 surveillance the UK has been something of a trail blazer.

And it has proved to be a staggering failure. If you want a record of crime, it sometimes works. As a preventative tool, utterly useless.

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Tiny Twitter thumbnail tweaked to transport different file types

Ledswinger
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Re: Invalid Zip?

But the significance depends on the purpose. Might be crap for shovelling malware, but this offers a sly way of distributing files without clearly linking the intended recipient with the creator. Obviously you'd need the payload file itself to be encrypted, and possibly some hidden attributes.

I would imagine the intelligence agencies have been using this approach for years.

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Exiting DWP digital boss Mayank Prakash switches to energy biz Centrica

Ledswinger
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But why?

I really can't understand Centrica choosing to recruit staff who have been sheep-dipped in the DWP special sauce, lovingly prepared by the civil service from ingredients including failure, sloth, denial, stupidity, fiscal incontinence, and a total and utter lack of customer focus.

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Now Europe wants a four-million-quid AI-powered lie detector at border checkpoints

Ledswinger
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Re: £4m doesn't go far

Having problems here trying to work out exactly what is irking you,

Nothing really, other than the foolish belief that this is going to work.

My national share of the £4m is about 11%, say £400k, and that's a drop in the ocean against the waste of hundreds of billions by the UK government on unneeded projects like HS2 and Heathrow R3, or grossly over-expensive projects like Hinkley Point and the rest of the nuclear programme, the Great Renewable Energy Scam, any defence procurement project, or anything spent by the Home Office or DWP, all of Gordon Brown's PFI crimes, and most centralised IT ideas for the NHS.

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Ledswinger
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£4m doesn't go far

Especially spread across public sector procurement and teams split across nine countries, public, private and academic institutions. Which means either:

1) It is a budget affair that will work as badly as any other state sponsored AI and facial recognition mess up (like the Metropolitan Police's failed facial recognition efforts)

2) The EU are lying, and the real cost is much, much higher (and it still won't work)

3) These costs are just for a web front end to a pre-existing AI/recognition system being sold by a large tech company like IBM, Amazon or Google (and it STILL won't work).

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Worldwide Web wizard Tim Berners-Lee sticks wellington boot into Worldwide Web's giants: Time to break 'em up?

Ledswinger
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Re: Interesting point about Twitter

The problem with Twitter is the adolescent and immature run riot.

Almost any form of social media is prone to this, including offline. Look in any local newspaper's letters page, and its the same small coterie of axe-grinders writing angry letters about their opinions, and often (even with editorial control) having weeks-long arguments by letter, trying to shout down any opposing views. Admittedly language is strongly moderated, but intellectually it is often the same old pap from the same groupthink (around my way, Labour party supporters seem to think that their tireless coordinated political whingeing is somehow of interest to anybody, but I'm sure that this varies according to locality, local issues and demographics).

Even in supposedly moderated on-line forums in some there are the unpleasant, passive aggressive lurkers (often people with far too much time on their hands) who always have a strongly held view on anything regardless of their own limited knowledge, that they insist on foisting on others, and trying to shut down contrary expressions. Or you have mob rule because the host publication appeals to a particular demographic or political persuasion. In most respects the Reg forums are a beacon in a dark world - allowing very wide ranging views, tolerant of rude words and argument but not abuse. But that's not just about good moderation, it is that the Commentariat is a broad church, where (generally) we don't take or mean offence, where we appreciate challenge, and we are broadly tolerant of opposing thoughts and arguments. None of the mainstream social media platforms can say that. One other thing is that the Reg forums are a small enough community to work in the sense of human social interaction - we recognise many of each other's names or pseudonyms, we have an inkling of their style, a guess about their political and social thoughts, and often their experience and knowledge levels. On Twitter and Facebook, other than for small private groups, the "community" is often far too large to allow any form of civilised exchange at a human scale, or for people to know anything about the other people with whom they interract. As configured, the big social media platforms allow, shield and reward people who want to shout their angry views to the entire world. If they could reduce the "scale of engagement" for individual posters, that might be a start. Advertisers (despite my contempt for them) pay for access to as many targeted people as possible; But there's no reason for individuals to need or have that access to spew the contents of their meagre brains to the whole of Twitter or Facebook.

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Ledswinger
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Don't break them up

...because that was tried with Ma Bell, and all that resulted in was the Baby Bells, and the resulting slow motion car crash that was, is and evermore shall be US telecoms.

What needs to happen is to rigorously examine the business practices of these giants, and to make sure that the many efforts they make to stifle, obstruct, or buy anybody that challenges them are firmly blocked or brutally punished. A case in point is Google's efforts to prevent any competition in phone operating systems.

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'Privacy is a human right': Big cheese Sat-Nad lays out Microsoft's stall at Future Decoded

Ledswinger
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Re: Eco credentials?

C'mon, man. You know enough to realise that active air cooled systems are invariably far more energy intensive than a semi-passive water cooled system? IIRC two thirds of a data centre's energy use is cooling to dump the waste heat from its processors to the atmosphere.

You're right that Slurp's position is wanky eco-posturing. And you'd probably be right that it was more expensive and only done for PR reasons. But the problem is that DCs as they now exist are the modern day coal fired power stations.

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Ledswinger
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Re: Hypocrite

You do have to wonder. Does this bloke have not a jot of insight? Did it not occur to him, or his army of arse licking minions, PR dweebs and speech writers that promoting Slurp's defence of privacy might not back fire?

Maybe the joke's on us. Maybe Merkins do in fact understand irony, and here it was being deployed at a very impressive 0.9 Croft&Perry*

* the Croft&Perry is the SI unit of irony. A bit like the Coulomb, the base SI measure is normally far too large for practical use, so all credit to Nadella for hitting a 0.9 C&P

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This revolution will not be televised – but it will be sanctioned: Googlers walk out over 'sex pest' executive scandals

Ledswinger
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Re: Chocolate

It's - to our knowledge - typically used when things aren't 'right' - "that's not very Googly", "you're not being very Googly", etc.

I suppose it's not very PC to suggest rounding these people up and disposing of them?

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Swedes grumbling about Apple Store in their park are lucky – in Toronto, Google eats all your data

Ledswinger
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Re: Toronto

In Google's 'Data driven utopia' do they have marching bands playing the Radetzky March continuously?

Don't know. I still fondly recall the days when Waterloo Station played Lillibulero to keep the commuters moving fast and in step. Twats have presumably stopped it for fear of offending some bunch of whining, worthless, f***ers.

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US Republicans bash UK for tech tax plan

Ledswinger
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Re: International norms

The big mistake that US politicos make is assuming that the big American companies pay tax in the US on their international profits.

No they don't. In the US bribery is legal, as a corporation you just buy yourself a politician by funding their election campaign. The politician then says whatever you want him to say, no matter how dishonest, stupid or inaccurate. None of them believe that US corporations pay their taxes at home, but they don't care - they speak only for whoever has bought them.

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US government charges two Chinese spies over jet engine blueprint theft

Ledswinger
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I'm still not clear why they would need to steal blueprints for an engine, when they could reverse-engineer one that they'd already purchased?

Because reverse physical engineering is either crude, or very time consuming on anything that may be made with real precision. All very well knowing that all the fan blades you measured were 54.002 mm thick, but unless you know the required tolerances you'll have to guess them, or assume them from variations in your sampling. Getting it wrong can mean excessive wear, component failure, lower efficiency or much higher cost.

But you have to wonder why the idiots involved allowed the designs to be held on internet accessible systems that could be breached. Admittedly if they were air gapped the Chinese may then have looked at alternative approaches, but that's really a separate issue. If something of very high value is connected to the internet, you might as well leave it on the pavement with a big sign saying "help yourselves".

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Ledswinger
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Re: They need to steal more than just the blueprints.

Yup I'm sure bottom barrel Chinese made consumer gear is very indicative of their real industrial products like things that go into their HSR which has like half the accident rates per distance versus the Japanese,

Citation needed, if you please.

A quick search on the topic indicates a series of very serious high speed rail accidents in China, far fewer than Japan, and that search picks up Chinese popular protests about state coverups on rail safety.

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

Ledswinger
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Re: Correction

I'm with you having concern on the numbers. But my concern is that if it has to handle 8.5m claimants, then we have a quarter of the prospective UK workforce on some form of benefit handouts.

It would seem to me that there's a more fundamental problem than the IT and processes.

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Top AI conference NIPS won't change its name amid growing protest over 'bad taste' acronym

Ledswinger
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Re: Sexist ?

That doesn't matter to those who are taking offence. Often on other people's behalf, whether those others like it or not.

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