677 posts • joined 6 Jul 2007
My father-in-law has a tablet, and constant training has got him to use the basic functions through pure muscle memory.
However, it's a joy to see him at the computer, where he moves the mouse by delicate whacks until the cursor is where he needs it. Actually holding and moving the mouse involves gestures so extravagant that if the pointer wasn't limited to the screen, it would end up in the next room.
Re: When "off duty" and out & about with the Wife ...
This is rather like speaking in a foreign language - it works wonderfully until you try it with someone who knows it, and you didn't know they knew. Then it can get embarrassing.
.- -. -.. -- .- -. -.-- .--. . --- .--. .-.. -.- -. --- -- --- .-. ... .
Okay, just wondering - why are targeted ads worse than untargeted ones? I pay for my TV programmes by sitting through irrelevant advertisements for stuff I'll never buy - vaginal washes, child-safe products and mildly insulting crap which suggests that any middle-aged white man is a bumbling moron.
By and large online ads show stuff I might actually be interested in - upgrades for my Jeep, outdoor hiking kit and new computer products. Yes, they often get it wrong, and if I buy something online, I don't need twenty more of the damn things. OTOH Amazon's alogs have got it pretty much right, and thanks to their recommendations I've found and enjoyed several new authors.
My local grocer (I live in a small town) often recommends products that he knows I will like, and when our cat died the local SPCA sent us pics of a little feline orphan who is now on the chair next to me as I write. I never feel the need to slap either for' violating my privacy'.
In other words, insensitive and intrusive advertising is unarguably a bad thing. But if people know what you like and use that information sensibly and politely, what's the problem? Seriously, do explain and don't just downvote.
2 + 2 = 4, er, 4.1, no, 4.3... Nvidia's Titan V GPUs spit out 'wrong answers' in scientific simulations
As Einstein didn't say ...
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again on your computer and expecting the same results.
Re: Does that mean...
'but the sausage fest that academia is ...'
When arguing for gender equality, it's probably not a good idea to identify one gender using derogatory slang that refers to their genitals.
Had you referred to a group of women as, let's say, 'a taco feast' you would rightly be condemned for misogynistic language. It would appear that, as a warrior for equal treatment for men and women, you fail to practice what you preach.
Re: Well done Google....
'Google never does anything that doesn't directly benefit Google.'
well, yes. I assumed from the start that's what this whole 'https:' thing was about. A year or two back some phone companies announced that they were going to be stripping out ads - including Google's adwords programme - and inserting their own.
Google is basically an advertising company that also does search and some other stuff. Threaten their revenue stream and big G will - literally - change the web to stop you.
'... in an eugenic attempt to preserve racial vitality.'
While not disagreeing with the extreme Spartan proclivity toward practical eugenics, what 'race' are we talking about here? The Spartans did not see themselves as a separate race. Overall, the Spartans were that branch of Greeks called Dorians, but they didn't show any great fondness for other Dorians, yet alone trying to keep that race 'vital'.
As for chucking people off cliffs as a punishment, that was the Romans. Google 'Tarpeian Rock' for details.
There was an article in the NY Times a while back where a woman sued to get back a gold crucifix that a cop saw dangling from her rear-view mirror and rather fancied. It was the only item of value in the car when it was stopped.
The crucifix was worth <$100 but the woman wanted it back for sentimental reasons and had to spend thousands to do so. And no, she was not stopped for, or accused of, any crime, or even a driving offense (other than driving while being black).
Re: Slightly inflated cost estimate here?
What you have here is what we used to call a 'logistics sink'.That's when a incident occurs which allows a military unit to write off stuff that has gone missing/been misappropriated, been broken, or just needs replacing.
As a result a one-minute contact with the enemy can consume a truly amazing amount of equipment. I'd imagine this logic bomb presented the IT folks with a similar opportunity.
I recall listening in despair on the radio as some numpty of a reserve officer - in a combat zone - gave his unit's map location in clear. Then realizing his error, he gave the same map location again, in code.
Re: so they are saying
Actually, the guy with a liberal arts degree asks 'Do I need to hire a science, engineering or accounting graduate for this?'
A liberal arts degree pays shit only if you go for a job in that discipline. However, people with degrees in medieval poetry might end up running banks and government ministries. A liberal arts degree shows you can think analytically and deal with and in heaps of BS. There's demand for those skills.
For the record
According to a survey I read a whiles back, over 90% of people reckon they are above-average drivers. That should tell you all you need to know about the ability of humans to assess risk.
Does this firing thing only work one way?
Two quotes from this article struck me -
'There's just something about using a long list of stereotypes to argue your pre-decided conclusion that doesn't engender much love in people.' and
"Using someone’s biological sex to essentialize an entire group of people’s personality is like surgically operating with an axe."
I've just finished reading an article in the Guardian entitled ' Salma Hayek is right: compared with women, men are lazy and entitled.' And yes, the rest of the article reads as you might expect after that headline.
Should we confidently expect feminist writer Julie Bindel to be fired by the end of the week? I'm not holding my breath.
Re: Not for profit
'You yanks do appear to have the worst ISPs in the developed world'. 'Appear' is the operative word. Canadian telecoms are way worse - we actually envy the Americans.
Still if the yanks scrap Net Neutrality that might change.
Re: This is why you want anonymous payments
'Civil forfeiture' is simply highway robbery by law enforcement officers in many US states. Abuses have been so rife that congress tried to control it, but discovered that some police departments have become so dependent on the income that they literally cannot survive without what they strip from passing motorists. Many confiscations are for less that $500 because the cops know it's not worth tourists fighting to reclaim the money in court.
It's standard advice in our part of the world that one does not travel in the USA with anything that a law enforcement officer might fancy. In some southern states, that even includes the car - even if you have a vehicle, at times you're better off still using a rental.
If that sounds like exaggeration, consider these cases
Piracy icon can be repurposed here ...
Re: Too Many Idiots in the Kitchen
I think he meant 'tautology'.
'Oxymoron' btw IS an oxymoron. The word is from classical Greek and means 'sharp-dull'.
Re: TL;DR -
You know, that sounds like you are calling US football players rapists.
Following your link, and leaving out the repitions and unproven claims I found less than 100 cases this year. But let's round it up to 100, to be on the safe side.
Now there are over a million teens and young adults who play football in the USA
Which makes the number of rapists around one in 10,000. This is actually well below the percentage of rapes per male population of the UK. You might as well say British men are rapists.
Now, back to the issue of stupidity ...
Re: i did this when i was younger
Reading this thread was a real ride down memory lane, right to the back of the bike sheds at secondary school. All it lacked was someone bragging that he'd screwed the gym teacher. ..
This is typical CIA obfuscation. Don't be taken in by this attempt at misdirection. OBVIOUSLY, there is no Mars colony.
It's on Venus.
not just bad spelling
The name is not only misspelled, it is inaccurate. These are messages to be delivered after death. A swan song should be delivered at the moment of death.
So to use the app as the name says, Dabbsy should spend his last moments in this realm of tears frantically tapping at his keyboard. Otherwise, it's not a swan song but merely a pre-recorded message.
Sometimes it's blatant
For example, I've found entire books photocopied and sold on sites like scribd.com. We're talking technical books that sell for around £40 in a bookshop or on Amazon.
Do the moderators on the site really believe that somebody in Albania has been given permission to sell it online for £2? Or does the fact that they get a cut of every book sold induce a degree of wilful blindness?
Re: Experts all giving advice how how to stay secure
'Windows 10 was effected'
It was affected. To effect is to put something into operation - as in 'effective'. To affect is to change or influence someting.
Pedantic, I know. But it's one of those errors that actually hurts when I read it.
Umm... I can see why you chose 'anonymous coward' to post that comment.
Make that 'anonymous coward with poor reading skills' as the photographer was not 'approached by a copper'. In this event, the photographer was approached by a member of the public who seemd to think she was a copper.
You wouldn't be of that persuasion yourself perhaps?
air dryers - ugh
To quote Sheldon Cooper - I would rather have a diseased orang-utan sneeze on my hands.
Take a bacteria-rich environment, and then pump warm damp air over a dark surface such as the interior of the blower. What could possibly go wrong?
Some reading for the unsqueamish
(We don't seem to have a biohazard icon)
.. .and the thing about your new windows is that it makes it so much easier anyone who is interested to see what you are doing.
Well, someone had to ...
Tune in next week when Will is going to share with us what he discovered when he typed the phrase "eager beaver" into one of those new-fangled search engines.'
Well, if he'd used Google as I did, he would have found a removal company, two dictionary definitions, a scout adventure camp, a list of animal idioms, and a woodsplitting firm. Even page 10 of the results offered nothing more risque than a Dutch design company.
try #2 was image search with all filters off. The first hundred images were of - surprise - a flat-tailed rodent, which was occasionally depicted on a T-shirt.
A better mousetrap
Back a whiles, we had a problem with mice in the kitchen. A friend took a standard 2l plastic coke bottle, cut off the top third, inverted it and duct taped it back on. He then put some minced sausage at the bottom of the bottle and taped it upright to the side of the kitchen cabinet.
Next morning we found that the mice had dropped into the bottle via the inverted top and were awaiting disposal. Total cost - something like 15p + sausage, as the mice had eaten the sausage and the bottle couldn't be recycled.
That's a saving of £1,29.85
Tried and true works best
"Well my team and I really concerned ourselves fundamentally with a statistical analysis as a whole; in tandem with and related to a psycho-chemical and broadly speaking a behavioral analysis of over a thousand individuals."
"We've come to the inevitable conclusion that the one course of action that the authorities must take is to cut off their goolies."
Wouldn't 'homophone spellings be a better usage here? 'Homophones' - apart from gay chat lines, obviously - are words with the same sound (homo = same, phonos = sound) but different spellings. For example 'moat' and 'mote'; or indeed 'beanz' and 'beans'.
Homonyms are words with the same spelling but different meanings, such as the Poles who are from Poland and the poles that hold up phone wires.
I'm aware that there's a certain overlap between the two words, that's why my suggestion is 'better usage' rather than 'correct usage'.
Something else to look for is polarization. If a product has mostly 1 and 2 star reviews on one side and 5 star reviews on the other with nothing in the middle, that's a red flag.
I recently reviewed a book like that on Amazon. Some one star reviewers went into great detail about how and why the book was terrible, and the 5-star reviews were mostly 'Good book'. and 'I loved it.' Most of the 5-star reviewers had never reviewed anything else. As you might guess, the book was an abomination.
Another one to add to the list of meaningless PR buzzphases
'We take X extremely seriously' = now that we have been found not to have been taking X seriously at all.
'We apologise for the inconvenience' = we don't give a shit
'Is our highest priority' = after making money, of course
'We are sorry that people feel .." = we want to sound apologetic but are not
'Robust' = we need a positive-sounding adjective that can mean whatever we want
Anyone else care to add?
Why is Flash so relentlessly crap ...?
Every time you have to update the latest security failure in Flash you have to look around for, find and uncheck that optional extra program that Flash has bundled with the update.
Assuming the makers of that extra program pay Flash for bundling the software along with the update, it would seem that for Flash producing software with security holes must be quite the money-spinner.
If people don't need the patches, they don't download the extra software. Call me cynical, but if making a more secure product will cost the makers lots of money, expect an insecure future.
Re: are you saying all American programmers are too stupid to learn?
'What evidence is there that this is the case? Or is it just supposition and speculation? You may well be right -- I haven't a clue -- but data, please, not anecdote.'
I know! Why doesn't someone - perhaps America's new president-elect - set up an inquiry into this, and other types of visa fraud?
As a matter of interest, during the US election the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) made its preference so obvious that it was widely referred to as the 'Clinton Broadcasting corporation'.
Re: Not ethical
Facts don't have ethics.
If someone discovers a fact in an immoral manner, that research is immoral, not the discovery. By all means find and punish the researcher appropriately. (In the case of the Nazi researchers, they should have been punished as one would any other murderer and torturer.)
However, the facts do not change according to who discovered them, or how.
Re: such poor reading comprehension
'One out of every five illegal immigrants agents caught along the border in 2014 had a criminal record.'
Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, quoted in USA Today.
'When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best they’re sending people that have lots of problems. They're bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists… And many of them are good people”' - Donald Trump.
Likewise, Trump never said 'Women are pigs ...' etc. He called some individuals who happened to be women 'pigs'. He's an equal opportunity insulter. I'm no Trump fan, but what is alarming is the extent that the media have deliberately skewed so much of what he said (which was not admirable to begin with).
Also note that Trump is regularly called 'homophobic' despite having very little on the topic, and being well on the liberal side of the 'official' Republican posiiton as expressed at its convention.
ah ... economics
Here's how it was explained to me (it was late, the pub was about to close, so the economist doing the explaining had to use some heroic simplificatins, but still ..)
Basically, it's about the consumers. If everyone in the state has a good job, they can afford to buy stuff. If company A moves its operations offshore, but continues to sell stuff within the state it makes a profit, because its goods are cheaper. However, the pool of available consumers has shrunk by the number of jobs moved offshore.
Currently the US is in a position where the consumer pool is shrinking as more and more companies move jobs offshore and try to sell to the diminishing number of people who have good jobs within the state. (Not a lot of people are buying stuff in the rust belt right now) Everyone knows that the way to stop this impoverishment of the nation is to stop offshoring. But any individual company that tries this will be broken by the competition. It has to be the government.
It's rather like raising the minimum wage - when this happens there's more money going around (poor people spend money, the rich bank it). However, no single business can unilaterally raise wages and stay competitive.
Some economic actions have to be done by the gubmint for the common good.Sort of government by the people for the people ...?
[One word of comment: It's our ruling party, not their ruling party, you made a couple of grammar errors specific to Polish native speakers.]
I found none either. Perhaps you meant 'grammatical errors'?
Re: Only 96 batteries
I once had the fuel line rupture on a motorbike I was riding at speed down the A10. It sprayed petrol over my legs which somehow ignited. Because I was wearing thick leathers, it took other road users to point out that my lower half was basically a moving fireball.
A battery would not do that.
Re: Stasi nation
'There has been a long-standing transfer of wealth away from younger people towards the elderly'
Not necessarily so. Interest rates at the moment are lower than inflation, which means that those on fixed incomes or saving for pensions are getting right royally screwed. The elderly usually benefit from interest on their savings, but currently they're running on capital.
Meanwhile, it's the millenials who are borrowing cheap money at rock-bottom rates to buy houses, cars and yes, a better education. In other words, in the topsy-turvey world central bankers have given us, nothing really works the way it did (or should).
Outflanking from the extreme side
Okay, let's say you work at a university. When involuntarily co-opted onto a committee take extensive notes (you'll need them for later, and it helps you to pass the time). Then as matters wend to a conclusion, point out that every third person pronoun needs changing to 'she or he' to reflect gender diversity.
Then point out the focus of the programme is inherently patriarchial and does not reflect the need for inclusiveness in the student body and everyone needs to restart from scratch because of the total disregard the committee has shown for environmental issues. And disrespect for the LBGQTZYB community.
Add that you'd like to help re-work the programme, but you have to go to a protest about the exploitation of Elbonian orphans in animal adoption centers. Mention racial issues somewhere.
Because it's a university no-one dares disagree with you on any of these things, but a quiet consensus develops that you should never, ever be allowed to sit on a committee again.
I chose universities because I know them, but every outfit has its own hot-button issues.
Make the system work for you and you don't need quicklime.
So, to summarize ...
Yahoo left an insecure backdoor on their email servers for American intelligence to use. Later some un-named hackers - allegedly a foreign power - found some way to get into Yahoo's mail accounts and slurped the lot.
Are we seeing cause and effect here?
The last update but one took out my wife's sound card.
The last update bricked the entire computer, because it decided that the disk imaging system was not compatible, and so blocked it, making it impossible to so much as open a file or folder. You could also not uninstall the imaging program, even in safe mode, because the uninstaller was also deemed incompatible.
So far it takes about a morning every month to keep this POS operating, and we live in dread of what the next update will do. Meanwhile, my win7 computer just chugs along. I think I'd rather eat my own foot than 'upgrade'.
Re: Wanted to visualise him
'It most be possible to look like a complete moron without wearing a baseball cap, by why bother when you can don one and save all the effort.'
That's a heck of a slur on the 2.3 million males in British Columbia, Sir. Almost every man outside Vancouver wears one of these things whenever outside his home and they cannot decently be removed without a crowbar or the playing of the national anthem. I've seen people with baseball caps eating at 5-star restaurants.
Incidentally, have you seen the headgear they make you wear while you receive a P.hD?
'A parenting failsafe would reduce fertility to zero 15 years prior to end of life.'
Well, that would be useful. Become infertile in 2016, make no plans for after 2031, take out a large loan repayable in 16 years, update insurance policy.
Anyway this does not affect me. My family have been sterile for generations.
At what point are the British going to be honest with themselves and admit - 'Yes, we live in a police state, (but it's for our own good).'
fun with bots
Many bots are easy to spot. They have names apparently created by smashing one's face against a keyboard, and - for example - single mindedly whack away at an ore node no matter what is going on around them.
In my MMORPG the correct equitette is to attack the nearest hostile, and then lead it to the bot. Stand back and let bot get gibbed (they are crap at fighting back) and then rez the bot. Since the bot loses a bit of armor every time it dies, it's not uncommon to see re-animated corpses standing around in their underwear regularly getting shredded.
Re: Fat chance
This is what you get when you buy shop clothes like lumpen proletarians. Just get a decent tailor instead of the work of some east asian factory slave. You will both feel and look better.
I'm sure your valet can recommend someone.
There's no way of keeping your private informaiton off the interent. That ship has sailed. Hell, you can probably dig up more about your great-grandfather than your father ever knew. Great-gramps certainly never posted that information - it's just that the net is great for agglomerating bits of random info into a coherent whole.
So it's not us, but the gatekeepers who have to change. Banks, social services, and govt departments cannot assume that someone is who he says he is simply because he can provide a lot of personal information. It's not security by obscurity if its not obscure any more.
The easiest way is to bring personal relationships back into the business. You can't impersonate someone at the bank if the teller knows the real person. I live in a (very) small town. We all know a frightening amout about eachother. But no-one would last a moment trying to impersonate me to a local shopkeeper.
The problem comes because systems rely on computers having data about people, rather than people knowing people, and today that data is easy to get.
Canada has 10% of the US population and shares many aspect of a common North American culture.
Canada has 31 guns per 100 residents, but mainly rifles. In Canada there are around 150-200 deaths from firearms per year - over 70% of which are suicides and 3% are accidents. All Canadian cops are armed Police shootings make up less than 2% of fatalities.
In the USA there are around 11,000 deaths from firearms, of which around 60% are suicides. Guns are used in 60% of US homicides and 10% of Canadian. Whites are killed by police officers more often than blacks, but white make up around 60% of the population, blacks make up 10%.
OTOH, apparently police officers are eight times more likely to be killed by a black gunman than a white one, which may partly account for their trigger-happiness