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* Posts by macjules

1086 posts • joined 7 Oct 2014

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Heart of darkness: Inside the Osówka underground city

macjules
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You should see the Austria/Italy Brenner Base Tunnel project that is in progress - 55km long from Innsbruck to Fortezza. Very impressive indeed, not withstanding major resistance from Germany against the project

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macjules
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Forced labor using expendable slaves, no safety concerns, and machine-gun equipped supervisors

Sounds like Sainsbury's plans for post-Brexit farm labourers.

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Capita's UK military recruiting system has 'glitches' admits minister

macjules
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Re: No justice

1) Carillion goes into liquidation

2) Cabinet whitewashes the official receiver from any blame into his/her failure to action the warning points raised in the 2016 KPMG audit report, or to notify Cabinet Office or NAO.

3) Lots of small supplier companies go into liquidation

4) Carillion re-ermerges after a few months in a new form with a new name, Carrion, promising to rescue supply contracts and carry on the good name of its predecessor.

5) Trebles all round in Cabinet Office Briefing Rooms A/B/C

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macjules
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Re: Cuts?

The 2018 Defence Review should find:

Unfortunately we are no longer able to provide a valid defence of the United Kingdom in the event of an attack. We most strongly recommend that an All Party Taskforce be created to come up with an inoffensively-worded, formal certificate of surrender that every British ambassador would be able to deploy in the event of anyone declaring war against the UK.

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Self-driving cars still do not exist even if we think they do

macjules
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Re: They kinda do and kinda don't

Closest Swindon ever got to a "magic" roundabout was employing someone called Dougal.

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macjules
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Re: Firefox...

Nissan ... think in Japanese.

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macjules
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Re: They kinda do and kinda don't

I have a Level 1 Autonomous Tesla Model S

The car occasionally tells me what to do.

The wife always tells me what to do.

I have learned how to switch off the car trying to tell me how to drive

I am now learning how to switch of Level 5 autonomous wife

But apart from this, who would actually want an autonomous car? Where on earth does the fun in driving go? You might as well get get a bloody Über taxi to take you on holiday, and it would probably be a lot cheaper.

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220 heads to roll as Steria hacks away at UK.gov back-office IT biz

macjules
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Re: How does your country become the leader in IT

Simple. You keep outsourcing until you end up with your payroll being handled by something like Islamic State Payroll and HR Services (motto: "We can reduce your headcount").

If you start cutting those corners too far then you are going to end up with a bunch of monkeys, some very old computers and a website that makes Geocities look good.

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WikiLeave? Assange tipped for Ecuadorian eviction

macjules
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Re: Here's a question

Yes they could smuggle him out in a diplomatic 'bag', which can be a container or anything. However they just have to take him out under their protection which would prevent the police from detailing him.

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macjules
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Re: He hasn't been in the news much lately...

My initial thought as well.

She added that a third country might help out by offering Assange a new couch.

I don't think I would want to see what the state of the current one is. After 5 years of surfing porn saving Western Civilisation As We Know It from evil dictators I should think that that couch could probably reproduce itself now.

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Apple agrees to pay £136m in back idiot taxes to UK taxman

macjules
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Let me guess ..

The 'extensive' HMRC audit cost UK taxpayers £138m to carry out.

For 2015/2016 accounts year I owe HMRC around £18,000 in corporation taxes. I shall now follow the Apple example and send them £180

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If Australian animals don't poison you or eat you, they'll BURN DOWN YOUR HOUSE

macjules
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Re: But how do they spread fires?

You don't need to be intelligent when you are protected from predators and have your food and shelter provided by humans. A friend who keeps turkeys says that the juveniles have to be taught to eat; they are apparently too stupid to learn unassisted.

Sounds like Glasgow.

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macjules
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Re: But how do they spread fires?

No, they leave the complicated stuff like matches and lighters for the Dropbears to do.

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1980s sci-fi movies: The thrill of being not quite terrified on mum's floral sofa

macjules
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Re: Not just technology...

+1 for Elle - a really amazing film.

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Your connection is not Brexit... we mean private: UK Tory party lets security cert expire

macjules
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Re: Leading by example?

There was a BREXSSL vote taken. In the vote 52% of all Tories voted to no longer use SSL certification. The "HTTPStayers" who lost the vote are taking the case for HTTPS to the High Court and are demanding that self-certification signing requests should never have been permitted.

Nigel Farage has now joined the board of Symantec, having promised to work within the system to prevent the use of HTTPS ever again.

Boris Johnson was not available for comment.

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macjules
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This is a "strong and stable" Government

Less of the horsey talk around Mrs May please. You'll upset the Brexit Unicorns.

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The healing hands of customer support get an acronym: Do YOU have 'tallah-toe-big'?

macjules
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Re: Eyebrows

Before I have even bent down to look over the user's shoulder, he or she cries out: "It's not doing it now!"

The real problem starts 1 hour after you have charged the client and are back on the M25 .. only to get the call, "Its gone again"

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Game of Thrones author's space horror Nightflyers hitting telly

macjules
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Re: Prediction for this comment thread . . .

At least you won’t get “WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO FINISH THE STORY?”

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Jocks in shock as Irn-Bru set to slash sugar and girder content

macjules
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Re: Is nothing sacred?

I don't think you are supposed to drink it when you are sober. It requires a balanced state of ongoing inebriation, recovery from a post-pub dinner of curried haggis and chips plus deep-fried Mars bar. Only then can you really appreciate it's potency.

For everyone else, it is made from the sweetness of Scottish wild thistles, combined with a pinch of rust from the Forth bridge and the tears of England supporters who have just endured another thrashing at Murrayfield.

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macjules
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WTF?

Is nothing sacred?

Next, someone will be claiming that deep-fried Mars bars are bad for your health.

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Military alliance NATO adopts official hymn

macjules
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Could do worse than the official hymn of Ankh Morpork (“We Can Rule You Wholesale”):

When dragons belch and hippos flee

My thoughts, Ankh-Morpork, are of thee

Let others boast of martial dash

For we have boldly fought with cash

We own all your helmets, we own all your shoes

We own all your generals - touch us and you'll lose.

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Brazil says it has bagged Royal Navy flagship HMS Ocean for £84m

macjules
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Re: Whats in a name

And the next one is going to be called "Big Charlie" ...

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macjules
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That's not even half an F35 unless the price has now dropped from £174m each.

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UK security chief: How 'bout a tax for tech firms that are 'uncooperative' on terror content?

macjules
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Essentially it is this:

"Please Mrs May, I've made lots and lots of noise to get big nasty Google to pay some more money, so that you can spend more money on illegally bailing out the East Coast Line. If you give me a much more important job then I can attack Apple and Facebook and extort bribe fine them for some more cash as well"

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When neural nets do carols: 'Santa baby bore sweet Jesus Christ. Fa la la la la la, la la la la'

macjules
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Re: Someone record these, stat

Me too

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macjules
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Re: 12 Days of Regmas

Nicely done, but i would have gone with the "Two Outsourcers Outsourcing"

But, it's Christmas, I have to lay off* Steria and Capita for at least 1 week per annum.

* Unlike what they do to their staff! (Boom boom!)

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Nest's slick IoT burglar alarm catches crooks... while it eyes your wallet

macjules
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I did tell the insurance company. "Silly", "stupid", "f*cking idiotic man" are the lesser choice words that my wife used to describe my decision. I thought that with any alarm you reduce your insurance premium by 20% so we got ADT Security to fit alarms, detection points and entry systems to front, back and garage doors.

Next time I will just install mini-gun turrets around the grounds - it will be cheaper and I won't have to sleep on the sofa for 2 nights.

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'Twas the night before Y2K and a grinch stole the IT department's overtime payout

macjules
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Firing the staff and telling them you are getting £50 is a dick move

Except that this is a tried and tested method by administration and HR staff everywhere. Case study:

JP Morgan UK have x number of support technicians with the exact required skill set for Infrastructure Support - Cloud Automation Engineering. Come end of Q3 an admin wonk (not an HR one I might add) decides to offshore these jobs and place all the UK technicians on 3 months notice, and because they all work in the sensitive areas of the bank they are placed on gardening leave: hence there is now no support at all. During this time JPM try to recruit a team in India (understanding of LOB technology drivers, cloud structure, LDAP, SAML, OAUTH2, OpenID Connect etc.) but to no avail.

The admin moron is now summoned to senior management to explain in person why there is now no support at all for DevOps.

Best option for JPM is to take a deep breath and admit the mistake, pay the support team a very large bonus and hope that they will come back to work, but this is JPMorgan and they don't do things like that.

All the support team have their redundancy period accelerated to 1 week and receive 6 months pay plus their expected annual bonus. They are then signed back to JPMorgan on a minimum 3 year contract, at contractor rates of around £1,000 per day, i.e. more than 4 times their existing salary.

OPM and all that ...

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macjules
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Re: Merry Christmas

To you and yours, all the best for a wonderful holiday season, and a healthy and prosperous 2018"

I was hoping for a nice quiet Christmas, last-minute dash to John Lewis on Sunday, family, friends lunch on Christmas Day etc. But no. at 3pm yesterday I get last second screaming from a project manager, "biggest client ... blah, blah ... SLA level 1 support needed .. offshore SLA support not available from Mumbai .. panic panic .. can you cover 24/7 until Thursday?".

As my better half said, "just charge them £1,000 per call until they get the message"

Happy Blooming Christmas to all (except my employer and project managers everywhere)

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That was fast... unlike old iPhones: Apple sued for slowing down mobes

macjules
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Re: Planned obsolescence

Here in France you take old/broken electrical goods back to the place you bought them (or the municipal dump) for correct disposal.

A shame you can't do that with your politicans..

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macjules
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Re: That probably explains..

It IS user replaceable, just that you have to be a qualified engineer user to do it.

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Liberty Global's sale of Austrian biz paves way for Voda merger plans – reports

macjules
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Re: Presumably without Vodafone UK

Vodafone UK customers get smothered with so much shit and get held in the dark queue for so long that you could probably grow mushrooms on them.

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Beyond code PEBCAK lies KMACYOYO, PENCIL and PAFO

macjules
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Re: DILLIGAF

LINO:

Limited Intelligence, No 'ope

KROOD:

Keyboard Replacement: Owner/Operator Drool

CRUD:

Computer Replacement: User Died

(seen stamped on a government Dell box - I thought it just meant 'User Deleted' until enlightened)

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Merry Christmas, UK prosecutors: Here's a special gift... a slap from the privacy watchdog

macjules
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Re: Haa Haa Haa

Yeah, who needs a judiciary when you have Twitter and Nigel Farage as the arbiter of good taste.

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Hot chips crashed servers, but were still delicious

macjules
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Re: My keyboard stupidity.

Try Swiss keyboards with multiple options for French, German and Italian layouts. I never understood the need for Alt Gr until I went there.

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macjules
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Re: The first question you ALWAYS ask...

That should have made the short list - Mr Sharwood could do worse than read through the comments and select the best ones, which are often far more witty than the original post.

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macjules
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Re: Power Cables...

My favourites:

Condom used as a SCSI terminator (amazingly it worked for a while)

Chewing gum used as 10Base2 terminators (did not work)

RJ-11 plugged into RJ-45 ports (Tech Support get in here NOW!)

Spending 2 hours explaining to a graphics designer that a RasterOps display required a RasterOps graphics card, not "any one will do"

Likewise "no you can't just throw any type of memory into a computer, especially the one you bought on holiday" - this when a 16Mb 30pin SIMM came in at around £1,000

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NAO probing Capita's sickly £700m GP support gig

macjules
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A "successful" Capita project depends upon which MP you have to con report to. So the Met Police pay and pensions contract is a roaring success, if you are the junior minister responsible for this. Otherwise the polite term "total cluster*ck" readily comes to mind.

Most outsourced contracts are regarded as a major success if over an extended period (usually well into the next administration's period of office) they have saved at least 1p below the original projected saving.

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Oh good. Transport for London gives Capita £80m for WAN, LAN and Wi-Fi

macjules
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Re: Doesn't seem too bad

Or an Arthur ... Half the cost of an F35

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macjules
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Re: Crapita public wifi ????

Anyone who wants to grab data from several million mobile handsets on a daily basis? Of course with Capita the WiFi networks are totally safe, never have problems and always have a reliable call centre to help.

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Braking news: Nissan Canada hacked, up to 1.1m Canucks exposed

macjules
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This would usually tell me that something a lot nastier happened .. "but we're not telling what". When a company tells you that "No personal banking information, such as card numbers, were taken", it is time to change cards or be wary of your 'bank' telephoning you with an 'account query'.

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Oh good, half of Defra's Brexit projects involve IT

macjules
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Re: Standard systems...

Doesn't matter what you call it. Trust me on this, none of them have PRINCE2 qualifications, A couple might have a handful of CPD points and I am pretty sure at least one PM in GDS knows what a scrum is outside of rugby. The rest probably know what a laptop looks like, how to switch it on and how to start Word or Excel (major plus point in the civil service). Ask any DEFRA wonk what JIra is and they will tell you "We tried that and went back to post-it notes on a board".

Oh, and for some reason they really love Scrumwise. Used to be Flash postit notes, but now finally in HTML5, which they can drag and drop, just like the real thing.

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CSS and Javascript on GOV.UK page take early Christmas holiday

macjules
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Re: NPM registry timeout

I rather suspect that someone forgot to include 'gulp' in the Jenkins process.

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HMS Queen Elizabeth has sprung a leak and everyone's all a-tizzy

macjules
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Meh

"HMS Queen Elizabeth has sprung a leak and everyone's all a-tizzy"

Well, only The Sun it would appear, according to Reuters.

Having been a 'from new' Range Rover owner (and never again I might add) I know that the first thing you do is take the vehicle out for a road test and then promptly dropout it back to the showroom with a list of defects that need fixing.

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French gov files €10m complaint: Claims Amazon abused dominance

macjules
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..filing the complaint was a "strong and unprecedented action"

Not so unprecedented when one considers that Bruno Le Maire has been planning this ever since Tallinn in September, followed up by his meeting with Denis Kolberg in Berlin on Sept 24th. Also this wouldn't by chance be a deflection by La Maire with regards to French protectionist blocking on Fincantieri SpA’s bid for French shipyard STX last month, would it? By the way, that clearly breaches a very large number of EU regulations.

I think that we should be told.

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Facebook confesses: Facebook is bad for you

macjules
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Re: LCD

But isn't this (almost) the raison d'être of Facebook? It is the psychological impact of the 'Like' button that Justin Rosenstein intended, described by him as "bright dings of pseudo-pleasure" for those suffering from lack of attention.

Facebook is just a simple, small enterprise, intent upon total human subjugation and with a headquarters based inside a inactive volcano filled with liquid hot magma. You can't simply blame Facebook for marketing upon the inadequacies of their minions users.

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'I knew the company was doomed after managers brawled in a biker bar'

macjules
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Re: It's all fun and games until someone's toes freeze solid and shatter,

At my school the dinner ladies ensured this would happen even without the aid of liquid nitrogen.

The custard at my school was commonly referred to as YellowCake - very, very bright yellow, solid beyond the 'goo' level of bad custard and I am pretty sure that it would glow in the dark.

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Pest control: Eggheads work to help RoboBees dodge that fly-swatter

macjules
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Always presuming that the soldier has the mental ability to understand what "Front towards enemy" means. Have met a few that might fail that one.

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Russia could chop vital undersea web cables, warns Brit military chief

macjules
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Is a troll-sub the sort of submarine you would expect to be manned by Katie Hopkins?

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