701 posts • joined 17 Aug 2013
we may have a serious problem with the definition of time as that is currently defined using atomic clocks. And the rest of the SI is also rather relative because of this (the unit of length is derived from the unit of time by light speed).
Time is relative, we know this.
A second for you, whether measured using your trusty pocketwatch or the electron oscillation frequency in the fancy atomic clock taking up most of your office, is always a second, as c is constant (and so your metre is always exactly a metre etc.)
A second for another observer in a different gravitational potential or going at very different velocity through space will be different to your second though, and its by comparing the two that we can detect the distortions in space time that Einstein stated would be caused by gravity. However, for them, c is also constant, so their second will always be exactly one second and a metre exactly one metre to them.
Re: Count me unimpressed
I'm afraid I must disagree with the naysayers, post-behavioural-analysis precognition can be shown to be an extremely reliable predictor of behaviour.
For example, after scanning the headline, but before reading the article, I was able to accurately predict that Amber Rudd had opened her ignorant gob and made a complete tit of herself. Again...
Re: The science, the hype ...: let's digest the digest
"Don't get me wrong, those scientists set up a great experiment and they'll eventually find a use for their laser. But why do those press releases have to claim the suspension of all physical laws and free doughnuts for everyone?"
Yes, there may be a little of the usual blarney in the press release, but the first application mentioned in the article refers to the development more efficient solar panels.
One of the best models we have for capturing photon energy is the chloroplast, and the secret to its relatively good efficiency is the way that an excited electron (exciton) travels extremely fast from a chlorophyll molecule to the chloroplast reaction centre, where its energy is captured to produce ATP to fuel subsequent chemical reactions.
The longer the exciton takes to reach the reaction centre, the more energy it loses before ATP is produced and the efficiency of energy capture falls off dramatically, so being able to study excitons' movement using very short laser pulses may help us to drastically improve the efficiency of similar processes occurring in a solar panel.
Re: password specifications..
"From a security POV, it means that the server somewhere has access to the plaintext password so it can compare nth characters, instead of hashing the passowrd when it is set, storing the hash and forgetting the password. So it's less secure than using the whole password"
While you make a good point about using using a password hash rather than the password, the servers handling authentication are much less likely to have been compromised with malware due to little Johnny browsing soapytitwank.com (or similar delights) than your browser / PC / phone i.e. in real life making users type in their whole password on a personal device is probably less secure.
"Lots of bays with smaller affordable drives or smaller NAS units with a few of these monsters thrown in?"
Pros and cons to each approach.
Lots of small disks:- Less space 'wasted' on parity data if using RAID, cheaper per TB of storage, 6 or more disk NASes tend to be much more expensive as they're more business orientated, more disks means higher probability of failure.
Few large disks:- More space 'wasted' on parity data if using RAID, more expensive per TB of storage, small capacity NASes tend to be much cheaper, fewer disks means lower probability of failure.
In other words, I'm afraid there's no right answer, it depends on how much space you need, how much money you want to spend, and how much pain it will cause if you lose all your data.
"According to consumer law, if the price could be considered reasonable and there was offer and acceptance of contract, Argos would be legally obliged to give me the console for that price."
Absolutely, 'reasonable' is the key word here.
From what I can gather, the law on this sort of situation is a bit of a grey area, but I'm going from the experience of a colleague of mine who bought goods from an internet site for around £280 when other retailers' prices were around the £350 mark, and was then told that the price was a mistake and that to get delivery of the goods he'd have to pay the higher price.
He contacted the Office of Fair Trading and was told that if the internet trader did not deliver the goods, he could buy the same goods from another retailer, and could then take the internet trader to court to get back the difference in price (plus costs), and would almost certainly win. The internet trader then backed down and supplied the goods for the originally quoted price.
This was because, and only because:
1. The internet trader had already taken payment from my colleague's bank account, so a contract was in place.
2. The drop in price could be 'reasonably' assumed to be a discount or promotion, not a mistake. Most judges would deem a price drop from £350 to £280 as fitting this assumption, but in the case in the article, a price drop from £379.99 to £89.99 would almost certainly not be deemed 'reasonable' and would not be enforceable in court.
Re: Seizing his pension?
"What the actual fuck did he do with the money? - it says he gambled it away straight into the bookies pockets."
Tolerant as I am of the
addiction exploiting thieving bastards gambling industry, I'd be of a mind to get the money back from the bookies, otherwise charge them with handling stolen goods.
Yes yes, I know, it could never happen, but a nice thought...
Re: Who - "invisible" objects
"There is no requirement in law for a pedestrian (or a fallen tree, or a concrete block, a landslide or a cow) to be wearing something which you might consider a convenience to you."
True, there is no requirement in law, but you are going against guidance in the 'Rules for pedestrians' section of the Department for Transport Highway Code if you are not making an effort to make yourself visible whilst walking beside a public road. So it's not just a case of it being for vehicle users' convenience:-
Help other road users to see you. Wear or carry something light-coloured, bright or fluorescent in poor daylight conditions. When it is dark, use reflective materials (eg armbands, sashes, waistcoats, jackets, footwear), which can be seen by drivers using headlights up to three times as far away as non-reflective materials.
Re: The millibit/second strikes again!
Yes, that boggled my mind for a moment too, then I also assumed sloppy capitalisation. The chips are indeed 1 Tb, not 1 TB. From the horses mouth (Samsung Newsroom):-
Samsung Heralds Era of 1-Terabit (Tb) V-NAND Chip
"What does associated mean"
I assume that in this context it means people doing work for a company who are not employees i.e. contractors (individuals or companies.) I've come across a few large companies who refer to workers who are not full-time employees as associates.
Stops a company from saying "Well, they're not an employee of ours, so it's not our responsibility."
"What's the betting the guy behind this is called Claude Maximillian Overton Transpire Dibbler?"
Nope, if you look at the ingredients on this pede-tastic sausage roll it says it actually contains pork, not "30% something vaguely meat-like that has been within at least 3 feet of a pig."
Cut-Me-Own-Throat's offerings are to be found not in the pies section, but in the next isle, right next to the buns...
"That rings true for Theresa May's vision for England and in varying degrees for other parts of the UK."
Excellent news, I can't wait! No more Justin Bieber, Take That, Jedward, Eastenders, Big Brother, TOWIE, Kardashians etc. etc.
I'm sure we'll be allowed to keep Black Adder and Dad's Army, and maybe even Poldark (the 70's version, obviously)...
"The real power lies with the medical consultants. And they're not even employed by the NHS - they are contractors."
That was true many years ago, now much less so. My late father was an NHS consultant, and when he started practising medicine as a junior hospital doctor in the 60's, consultants were god. They walked on water and their word was law. By the time he retired however, he and his colleagues were constantly battling the local Trust management, who had the final say on just about everything, even if it affected clinical outcomes. Not to say NHS managers are necessarily bad - some are very good, usually the ones that have clinical experience themselves as nurses or specialists. A lot aren't however, listening to some of my father's experiences.
And these days most consultants are NHS employees as far as I'm aware, so when push comes to shove, they have to do what they are told. And they even have to listen to HR...
Re: I'd have to ask...
"..why US military pilots are not given training in hypoxia anyway? Back in the late 90s when I did my UK PPL my flying school required that all pupils be taken up in an unpressurised aircraft to a height of 10,000' whilst undertaking a series of written tests and hand-eye co-ordination tests so that they would recognise and understand the symptoms of altitude hypoxia."
It certainly used to be included as part of RAF flight crew training, and presumably still is, so I would assume that it's part of US aircrew training schedules as well.
The whole point of writing while experiencing altitude hypoxia is that many people don't notice that their writing has gone to shit till they are hooked up to their oxygen mask again by their instructor, and then get a big shock when they realise how discoordinated they had become without realising it. Expecting a military fast jet pilot to immediately notice hypoxia when they are simultaneously checking their ingress point, scanning for air and ground threats, identifying and locking targets, selecting and configuring munitions etc. etc. would be a bit of a tall order for most...
Re: "space-to-ground entanglement" ?
but is this really "space-to-ground entanglement"?
It is, but only in the sense that entangled pairs of photons are being sent from space and received on the ground, so slightly misleading.
As the article says, if the photon pairs are intercepted in transit, they lose their quantum entanglement state - this can be detected by the receiver so any data received (i.e. encryption keys) will deemed to be insecure and discarded.
Re: It's always fascinating when they probe Uranus.
"I think they should start using modern fictional characters, and the next moon of Uranus they discover should be called 'Little Finger'"
You may feel that having 'Little Finger' circling the ring of Uranus on the outer rim of the Solar System is appropriate astrolonomy, but as a happily married woman I must vehemently protest.
Mrs Trellis, North Wales
As one local Reg reader put it, the missive came in the form of a folded piece of paper, sans envelope, that got mixed up in a Domino's Pizza menu "and consequently very nearly went straight in the recycling".
A notice on the Coventry and Rugby Clinical Commissioning Group's site read: "We are currently experiencing issues with the answer machine service number included in the letter, however we are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible."
An NHS spokesperson went on to say "We are working through the backlog of voicemails as fast as we can, however as most enquiries seem to be about special offers on deep pan pizza with extra pepperoni, this may take us some time...
"Reminds me of the conversations I have with my wife sometimes.."
Wait, you didn't tell her about the TIGASA list did you? And more importantly, that the pattern on the curtains not quite matching the living room wallpaper is most definitely not on the list?
That way lies darkness, despair & eternal damnation...
Re: "Only exoplanets with orbital periods less than a hundred days were considered, "
"Or they've decided to cancel their subscription, and have despatched the war fleet. Simon Cowell has doomed us all!"
Presumably an alien civilization capable of interstellar travel will be technologically and culturally much more advanced than us, and so most likely have a much more sophisticated sense of fashion. Most of us will survive the encounter, but high-waisted trousers will be history...
"I only discovered it whe we were looking for water (for a borehole), while living in Afrika with someone present who had exactly this ability."
You seem to have misspelt 'when' and 'Africa' in this sentence.
"No magic, just plain natural science"
Just as you seem to have misspelt 'just plain natural superstition' in the final one...
Re: FTL Comms?
"Can you encode data at one ground station and have it immediately received at the other? "
In a word, no. This is sending data via a laser, so the time taken for the data to get from orbit to the ground station will be the same as any other optical communication.
The difference here is that some of the photons sent by the orbital laser are entangled pairs (created in the same event in the laser), and the ground receiver is equipped to be able to identify and read the state of entangled photons.
My (limited) understanding is that if you consider a particular property of a transmitted entangled pair (e.g. polarisation), while in transit both photons will be in a quantum state, neither polarised in one direction or another. However, once they are detected (i.e. 'observed') by hitting a photoreceptor, they reach a non-quantum state, and become polarised. Depending on the type of entanglement, a pair's photons will have either the same or opposite polarisation as one another.
This allows detection of an interception attempt. If a pair of received photons have not been intercepted, they will still be entangled when they hit the receiver, and so will always have, for example, opposite polarisation when they leave the quantum state. If one or both of the photons has been intercepted in transit, it/they will have already left the quantum state at some point and will no longer be entangled, so when they hit the ground receiver some will have the same polarisation, and some have different polarisation. That's when you know that someone has potentially fiddled with your data stream and you do not trust it.
I know it doesn't seem to make much sense, but this is the fun world of quantum mechanics. We know quantum theory is valid due to experiments in the lab and real life examples (i.e. semiconductor technology, and nuclear fusion due to quantum tunnelling in the Sun), just not really why...
Re: First of all
""Centralise IT at least and half these problems will go away, surely?"
In theory, yes, so have an upvote. But given government's proven abilities [sic] to handle large IT projects I think there are some practical problems with that."
IMHO one of the (many) problems with the NHS NPfIT fuckup, especially the integration of GP's surgeries into the system, was a lack of centralisation. The early initial spec called for one centralised system used by all NHS Trusts and GP surgeries, which was abandoned in favour of design whereby individual Trusts and surgeries could choose different providers. Yes, in theory this allows a choice, encourages competition and reduces lock-in, but in reality the result was a bunch of different providers all trying to integrate different products and technologies into one monolithic system on a national scale. And guess what, it didn't work.
So rather than giving Trusts and surgeries one system that would have worked, and worked reasonably well, and telling the Trusts and surgeries that moan, tough, it may be a slightly different to what you're used to doing but you're not stupid, you're just going to have to learn how to use it, instead we piss a few billion quid up the wall and get the abortion that is the Lorenzo patient records system...
"The Reg imagines readers will be keen to know which company's kit gets corrupted firmware when SANs crash"
They're not necessarily talking about corrupted firmware. I don't know any specific details about the FUBAR implementation at the ATO, but many years ago when I still did hardware I worked on DEC kit containing SWXCR RAID controllers, which were part of the DEC Storageworks tech taken over by Compaq and then HP.
I remember once having to flash a customer's drives' firmware due to firmware issues (probably DEC branded Seagate wide SCSI back then), because if there was a mismatch between what a drive was doing and what the controller thought it was doing, under certain circumstances the controller could mark a perfectly serviceable disk as bad and drop it from the array, and however much swearing and jumping up and down you did, it would refuse to mark it good again and bring it online and back into the array (unless you reinitialised the disk, wiping the data.)
In a failure scenario, where you've got other real hardware errors, this is disastrous as you can lose the whole array (and kiss your data goodbye.)
At this point you find you need a clean pair of trousers, and discover just how good your customer's DR strategy is...
"Will it work against uoıʇdʎɹɔuǝ uɐıʃɐɹʇsn∀?"
Encryption is not necessary for Australian english. Even in plaintext it's indecipherable...
"Just this arvo I was havin' a durry on the dunny, sat there with me grundies around me ankles, when I clocked this great big redback. Me mouth went as dry as a dead dingo's donger, and me clacker shut faster than a possum up a gumtree!"
Re: The usual baloney
"You do know that crushing bitter almonds releases cyanide"
Yes, maybe I should have been a bit more specific, I was talking about why benzaldehyde in almonds (C6H5CHO) smells the same as hydrogen cyanide (HCN). The long accepted lock & key mechanism for explaining smell works on the principle that a chemical that produces a smell response in the brain does so because it fits into, and so binds with, a particular type of nasal receptor, triggering a response. That clearly isn't the case with benzaldehyde and hydrogen cyanide, as they have a very different size, shape and chemistry.
If you're interested in why it's thought that quantum vibrations have an impact on how smell works , it's down to research into the response of the extremely sensitive 'noses' of Drosophila (the fruit fly), which respond very differently to a particular musky molecule when its hydrogen atoms are replaced with deuterium, even though this has no effect on the molecules shape, size, or receptor binding. It simply increases its molecular weight, which supposedly affects the frequency of its quantum vibration.
As to sucrose and saccharine, they don't come into this as they don't smell - they are sensed by the tongue, not by nasal receptors in the nose.
Re: The usual baloney
"Jesus fucking Christ! Another downvote for referencing a reputable scientific publication. Where do you get your science from then?"
You are completely correct in saying that quantum biology is a "thing".
Photon activated electron pair entanglement is thought to behind magnetic navigation in the European Robin, quantum tunneling of protons is involved in the enzyme catalysed breakdown of collagen during amphibian metamorphosis, quantum wave behaviour (i.e the uncertainty principle) of photon excited electrons is thought to be behind the extremely efficient transfer of energy from a chlorophyll molecule to the chloroplast reaction centre during photosynthesis, quantum vibration is thought to be a part of the mammalian smell mechanism (i.e. why cyanide smells the same as almonds even though the molecules involved are completely different in size and shape so don't fit with the lock & key theory) etc. etc.
I can only guess that your downvoter thought that you were agreeing with the AC's random ramblings about elements, protons and neutrons, which I highly doubt.
Re: Marry a laptop?
" In his mind letting gays get married is destruction of marriage (like he has the rights to that word). So in his mind if two guys can get hitched why can't marry my dog, my gun my computer."
I think we're misjudging this guy here. From the article:-
"This is Sevier's third bite at the Apple, so to speak – or fourth if you count his 2015 lawsuit against Apple for his porn addiction"
So he's not on a crusade against gay marriage, he just wants to marry his laptop so that all the sex will stop...
"So by messaging he means some sort of enterprise service bus was taken down?"
Sounds something like it. To quote Cruz - “we were unable to restore and use some of those backup systems because they themselves could not trust the messaging that had to take place amongst them.”
So, production system suffers major power failure, production backup power doesn't kick in, and either:
A) Power is restored to production but network infrastructure now knackered either due to hardware failure or someone (non-outsourced someone, obviously, 'coz he said so <coughs>) not saving routing and trust configuration to non-volatile memory in said hardware, so no messages forwarded.
B) DR is immediately brought online as the active system, but they then find that whatever trust mechanism is used on their messaging bus (account/ certificate/ network config) isn't set up properly so messages are refused or never get to the intended end-point in the first place, leaving their IT teams (non-outsourced IT teams, obviously, 'coz he said so <coughs>) scrabbling desperately through the documentation of applications they don't understand trying to work out WTF is going wrong.
Same old story, again and again...
- Mr Cruz, did you have backup power for your production data centre?
- Yes definitely, the very best.
- Mr Cruz, did you test your backup power supply?
- Erm, no, that takes effort and costs money...
- Ah, so you didn't have resilient backup power then, did you? Mr Cruz, did you have a DR environment?
- Yes definitely, the very best money can buy, no skimping on costs, honest...
- Mr Cruz, did you test failover to your DR environment?
- Erm, no, that takes effort and costs money...
- Ah, so you didn't have resilient DR capability then did you Mr Cruz?
- Mr Cruz did......etc. etc. ad nauseam...
" don't use WiFi, use a $10000 gold Ethernet cable made for audio fidelity"
Ethernet! What are you smoking? It's common knowledge that Ethernet cables use a linear signal and so induce audible negative feedback at primary and secondary resonant frequencies!
Any proper audiophile knows that you need a loop topology like Token Ring for a digital music network, and with Token Ring you get the added benefit of being able to tune the token to your prefered frequency to create a more ambient tone (as long as platinum carbide termination is used so that the token doesn't fall out of course.)
Re: expanding from?
"If so, where is the center of the universe?"
My favourite answer to that question was supplied by Prof. Brian Cox of rockstar physicist fame - "It's at the end of your nose."
Why? Because all the subatomic particles that make up the end of your nose and the space-time they occupy were present in the Big Bang singularity (in other words all points of space-time in the universe can be thought of as the centre.)
Made me look at the end of my conk with a new found respect...
Re: admitted stealing
"For crying out load, they didn't admit stealing. They didn't steal anything"
Correct, I suspect El Reg are using a little artistic licence when using the word 'stealing' in the subheading, though some senior Met. plod did use the word 'steal' in a press release. The pair in court pleaded guilty to:-
- "Obtaining files that would enable the hacking of websites and supplying files to enable the hacking of websites to others."
- "Supplying an article for use in fraud."
- "Supplying an article intended for in the commission of an offence under the Computer Misuse Act."