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* Posts by ArrZarr

583 posts • joined 6 Aug 2015

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French president Macron insists new regulations needed to protect us all from Facebook's claws

ArrZarr
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Unhappy

Re: maybe the REAL problem

It needs to start with parents, but the problem with parents is outlined in one of Sir pTerry's quotes:

“Sometimes I really think people ought to have to pass a proper exam before they're allowed to be parents. Not just the practical, I mean.”

― Susan Sto Helit, Thief of Time

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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

ArrZarr
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Coat

Re: Talk about the gates of Hell !

@Not Spartacus

Is the British based backup tea based?

Could it be an attempt to make a really fresh, *hot* cup of tea as a source of Brownian motion?

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ArrZarr
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Pint

Re: Talk about the gates of Hell !

The article mentions getting repeated gravity assists from Venus. Rich Purnell probably designed the orbits so that a small amount of fuel delta-V used near perihelion triggers a larger drop of delta-V due to the Venus flyby.

Really smart way of doing it if you ask me so Rich gets a pint.

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NHS*IT: Welsh system outages put patients at risk

ArrZarr
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Happy

"based on software that hasn’t been supported by Microsoft since 2014."

To take a wild stab in the dark, is this XP we're talking about?

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Stairway to edam: Swiss bloke blasts roquefort his cheese, thinks Led Zep might make it tastier

ArrZarr
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Happy

'Cause this is Cheddar

Cheddar night

And no one's goanna save you

From the dreams about to strike

You know it's Cheddar

Cheddar night

You're fighting for your life

Inside a Cheddar nightmare tonight.

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Techie was bigged up by boss… only to cause mass Microsoft Exchange outage

ArrZarr
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FAIL

Count yourselves lucky.

You changed the ringtone.

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Assange catgate hearing halted as Ecuador hunts around for someone who speaks Australian

ArrZarr
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Childcatcher

Re: It's simple...

Ever since the news reporter got his name wrong, I've stopped reading it as Jeremy Hunt and have always needed to do some quick translation between brain and mouth.

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Worrying Windows 10 wrecking-ball weapon weirdly wanders wildly on worldwide web

ArrZarr
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Re: safe surfing

3. avoid surfing the web from windows, if possible

That'll do a pretty good job of saving you from this particular 0-day as it's windows specific.

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HP says: Like, comment and subscribe to our beastly workstations

ArrZarr
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Happy

If you have Excel, everything looks like a spreadsheet.

Show me somebody who knows everything about Excel and I'll show you somebody who doesn't know anything else.

People get really down on Excel but there is nothing out there that accessibly solves more problems save getting your hands dirty with Python, JavaScript or some other loosely typed (read: vomiting onto a keyboard) scripting language

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Erm... what did you say again, dear reader?

ArrZarr
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Meh

Re: Pfffft.

I only have one thing to say to that --->

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ArrZarr
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Happy

I, for one, am glad that Norman is undertaking efforts that put him in a similar light as the Académie française rather than putting his copious free time to use in some field that might hinder progress to have some stuck-up traditionalist clinging to the arbitrary rulebooks provided. He doesn't work in the public sector, does he?

In the case of our wondrous mongrel tounge, the rulebooks were generally dreamed up in the 18th and 19th centuries by prescriptivist linguists who appear to have had very little basis for most of the rules they created and whose main objective appears to have been getting the English language to be neat and tidy rather than the ability to express ideas and have conversations.

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Haunted disk-drive? This story will give you the chills...

ArrZarr
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Headmaster

Re: Ghost in the machine

Whenever I'm answering those, I always end up putting a story together in my head about the "Happily street" or "Quickly Rainbow", usually focused on setting up some contrived situation in which it becomes grammatical English.

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Finally. The palm-sized Palm phone is back. And it will, er, save you from your real smartphone

ArrZarr
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If you use your phone as a kindle more than as a phone, a large screen is better.

If you use your phone to read & send email more than as a phone, a large screen is better.

If you use your phone to catch up on Social Media while on the bus, a large screen is better.

If you use your phone a lot and desire a huge battery, a large screen allows for more real space.

If you use your phone as a phone but don't want to always put your glasses on first, a large screen is better.

Only the first affects me, but there are many reasons that people desire large phones with large screens.

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Facebook's new always-listening home appliance kit Portal doesn't do Facebook

ArrZarr
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Childcatcher

Re: I'm still amazed

Hold on, are you suggesting that a world with minimal human contact is a bad thing?

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NASA's Kepler telescope is sent back to sleep as scientists preserve fuel for the next data dump

ArrZarr
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Pint

Kepler One

Orbits there alone, the end is nearing

All systems no go, goodbye there

Control is not convinced

But the computer has the evidence

We need to abort

Hibernation starts

Watching drowsily, the 'scope is certain

Nothing left to chance, all is working

Trying to relax, orbits round the sun

"Send me up a drink", jokes Kepler One

The count goes on

4, 3, 2, 1

Sol below us

Drifting sleeping

Floating weightless

Calling calling home

All the fuel is out, we're now adrift.

Stabilizers off, reactions still

Finished collecting, requested data

What will it effect, when all is done

Thinks Kepler One

Back at ground control, there is a problem

Rouse from hibernation, not responding

Hello Kepler One, are you receiving

Wake your sleep-filled head up, we're standing by

There's no reply

4, 3, 2, 1

Sol below us

Drifting sleeping

Floating weightless

Calling calling home

Across the solar wind

A final message, "use my data well"

Then nothing more

Far beneath the probe, the sun is burning

They don't realize, he's alive

No one understands but Kepler One sleeps

Now the light commands, this is my home

I'm staying home

<repeat chorus>

One for all the scientists who worked on this -->

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That syncing feeling when you realise you may be telling Google more than you thought

ArrZarr
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Unhappy

Re: Shrug

In my experience, Chrome is a superior browser - RAM hogs aren't an issue if you've got stacks of RAM. The UI doesn't do backflips every other week that requires extensive effort to get back to the way you had set it up, and it's more stable. Before you get your pitchforks and torches out, this is my experience. YMMV.

Frankly, if there's one company I trust to not lose my data or spaff it all over the interwebs, it's Google - I know exactly what Google are doing with my data - trying to make money from me. If I view everything Google serves with the level of black cynicism that everything on the internet requires, then they're not doing a good enough job.

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ArrZarr
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Meh

Re: Shrug

Frankly, I accepted a long time ago that using Chrome meant that Google could see whatever I was doing. When I'm watching something on Youtube in the evening and decide to go to bed, finishing watching whatever it is on my laptop without having to keep track of where I was is handy.

Buying stuff and online banking is done in Firefox.

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UK.gov finally adds Galileo and Copernicus to the Brexit divorce bill

ArrZarr
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Mushroom

Because it's not an example of two equivalently powerful entities from recent years deciding to get along, this is a team member rage quitting and then getting roundly beaten by the rest of the team as per the contract.

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How an augmented reality tourist guide tried to break my balls

ArrZarr
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Coat

Re: You're too old, Mr. Dabbs...

I'm going to take issue with this, good sir - these are designed by middle aged managers who want to appeal to millennials. Any millennial worth their salt would take one look at this and recognise it for the pointless gimmick that it is.

Then the millennial would get their phone out and look at everything through the camera app.

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Article 13 pits Big Tech and bots against European creatives

ArrZarr
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Facepalm

Aren't you looking forwards to the News organisations attempting to force Google to show their links?

I'm on a diet so somebody else will have to enjoy all the popcorn being prepared.

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ArrZarr
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Re: Why do we have to keep paying for something, time after time after time?

You make a table.

You sell the table.

Assuming you designed the table, you have a copyright for that exact table design.

Another carpenter thinks your table is pretty swish, he buys a copy of the design from you and you provide it accepting that he will make more. He now has a license to use your copyright.

A second carpenter also thinks your table is pretty swish but reverse engineers your table and makes his own set of plans that are an identical copy of your table design. If he makes any tables to your design, he is in breach of copyright.

This table was really swish, however, so a third carpenter makes his own set of plans that are based on your table but modifies certain elements. He (probably) isn't in breach of copyright* as he's not directly copying your design.

I'm also going to put the words 'patent' and 'trademark' in this paragraph, separate from the rest of the comment as they are different ball games but played on the same pitch.

*Depending on whether enough was changed from your design

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Dust off that old Pentium, Linux fans: It's Elive

ArrZarr
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Happy

Re: If it's snappy on old kit...

Fun fact - many old games counted CPU cycles or some other trickery and timed their AI speed to that - the original Command and Conquer does this I'm told. That's one situation where DosBox's random maths feature comes into its own - otherwise the AI player just magically gets an enormous base.

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ArrZarr
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Re: If it's snappy on old kit...

At a guess? Either not noticeably faster than a standard OS or even potentially worse. Assuming it's 64-bit (initial release was 2005 so this may be stretching matters) then the main benefit to running it over, say, Win10 is that it won't try to think for itself when you're trying to work on it.

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Guys, you need to sit down and have a chat: Skype rolls out SMS a week after Microsoft

ArrZarr
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Mushroom

The cycle continues

Every year more chat apps are flung out into the market. These chat apps don't talk to each other and everybody requires an ever expanding list of applications to keep in touch with everybody. Way back when, there was Aim. Then there was Microsoft Messenger. Then there was Skype. Then there was Facebook Messenger. Then there was WhatsApp. Now there is discord. Soon, something else will come along and take the market by storm.

Every one - a different set of logins, a different application, another database to be hacked into by ne'er do wells. Every one another program to figure out how to stop it beeping at you whenever you get a message. Every one making life more complicated.

I'm drawing the line here. No more will I have an array of disparate chat apps bulging under the weight of Franz - I will get a myspace page and people who want to talk to me will have to trek over there. Hopefully not too many will.

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Guess who's still in charge of your gas safety, Brits? Capita

ArrZarr
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Re: So pleased my house heating runs on oil...

I'm pretty certain that the majority of people who work at Capita are competent at their job.

I'm also pretty certain that they are hamstrung by the manglement.

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It's a mug's game: Watch AI robot grab a cuppa it hasn't seen before

ArrZarr
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Boffin

"A trivial task for humans"

Not really, we spend years learning how to pick stuff up, just like how we spend years learning our first language or to just walk.

And the above is within a system where the generic feedback loop of failure and success is a solved problem unlike in the field of AI.

Picking up a cup of tea is surprisingly difficult when you look at all the actions required.

1. Move your arm to exactly the right place - one inch any way and you're either missing the handle or knocking over the cup.

2. Figure out how many fingers will be comfortable in the cup handle and insert them into the hole - often there's much less than a centimetre of leeway.

3. Exert the right amount of pressure between fingers in the handle and below the handle to keep the cup balanced and level while it makes the perilous journey between mat and mouth.

This is only possible due to how astoundingly complicated and sensitive our nervous system is as you have a good idea where any part of your body is even if you can't see it due to the stresses and strains on the rest of your body which your brain then interprets.

That's not to say those pulling all nighters via egregious use of coffee can't do all these actions on autopilot, but it did take literal years to get the ability to figure out all the steps for themselves.

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x86 marks the spot: Dell reports upswing, keeps mum on going public

ArrZarr
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Paris Hilton

Okay, but the real issue

Is a "Class V Transaction" supposed to be read as "Class 5 Transaction" or "Class Vee Transaction"?

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Canny Brits are nuking the phone bundle

ArrZarr
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Re: Punished if you buy phone from elsewhere

WiFi calling is really handy if you're on call and your home is in a signal blackspot for the company telco.

It's not a particularly widespread use case, but it's why I have it set up on the company phone.

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Neutron star crash in a galaxy far, far... far away spews 'faster than light' radio signal jets at Earth

ArrZarr
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Boffin

Re: Hope it's true

According to Einstein's laws, something travelling at the speed of light causes multiple divide by zero errors. The only way for something to go faster than light is for Einstein's laws to have major flaws at near light speed, which are the speeds that the laws were written to formularise (It's not like Newton's laws which worked for the measurable speeds of the day but became less accurate once you started approaching C)

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Brit teen pleads guilty to Minecraft-linked bomb and airline hoaxes

ArrZarr
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Angel

If you're going to tweet that you're untouchable, then fate will take an interest and then you're getting caught no matter what.

I wonder if any of them have heard of John Sedgwick?

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Thunderstruck: Azure Back in Black(out) after High Voltage causes Flick of the Switch

ArrZarr
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Re: How odd ...

Going back through all of industrial history, the trend has been centralising power in the name of efficiency - Enclosure of fields between 1500-1800, the great mills of the industrial revolution and now the cloud.

You may as well complain that flooding in Bangladesh drives the price of RAM up when in the past you were able to cobble together some VRAM yourself with delay line memory or how flooding in central Europe causes a shortage of iceberg lettuce.

Centralisation happens, efficiency improves, local effects at the point of centralisation become more important.

But sure, rail against the cloud for the obvious WOMBAT that it is.

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ArrZarr
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Facepalm

Re: Texas - Europe ?

By not using it for PII?

If MS say it's not compliant with GDPR then you don't use it for anything that's covered by same.

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Trainer regrets giving straight answer to staffer's odd question

ArrZarr
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Meh

Re: Laptops cheap, good, qualified, trained and competent workers not.

Two years ago, I had to do a task in excel (was the only tool available to handle the job) where the calculation for the INDEX MATCH took an hour to complete. The file was so long it had to be split and still filled top to bottom of two tabs.

The best thing about Excel in these situations is how wonderfully choosy it can be when deciding whether to continue calculating or to stop if you try to do something else on the computer.

So I borrowed a book on software testing and got reading...

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No need to code your webpage yourself, says Microsoft – draw it and our AI will do the rest

ArrZarr
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Meh

Re: I do wonder...

@Bob

Black text on white is the most* familiar to those who grew up using pen and paper.

Blue is easy on the eyes* and a relaxing colour* because you don't want people getting angry navigating your site. Blobs of blue are also easy to spot* on a white background, which is important when the button says "Buy now"

2D flat is the visual style du jou^H^H^H decade

That being said, on any site that will give me the option, I'll have a dark grey background with white text as it's far easier on the eyes.

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No, eight characters, some capital letters and numbers is not a good password policy

ArrZarr
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Mushroom

As one of the few gatekeepers to having passwords stored in the password manager in the office, I need to tell people (the developers usually being the only people who don't need telling) that <company name>123 is not a good password and I won't accept it about 50% of the time.

Starting to consider sending these usernames and passwords to the whole company to force them to change it given that the password would then become public knowledge. Bad stuff would probably happen though.

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NVMe? Well, quite. Now Intel, too, is pumping out consumer QLC SSDs

ArrZarr
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Happy

Re: that's not the only strange thing

Considering the 1TB clocks in at $199, compared to a 1TB Samsung 960 evo at $500, you can bet your bottom dollar I was looking. I certainly wouldn't mind switching out my old 256GB NvME and also getting rid of four mismatched SSDs and HDDs for a 2TB 660p and some 4-8TB HDD for storage.

Oh, you meant the editors...

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ZX Spectrum Vega+ blows a FUSE: It runs open-source emulator

ArrZarr
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Meh

I tried writing a justification for why I thought 4/10 was too high, but the more I thought about it, the more I agreed - the software works on a basic level (because it was ripped off, most likely) so the primary issue is the crap case. Knock a point off for having to remap keys to get some games to work and you have 4/10.

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Revealed: El Reg blew lid off Meltdown CPU bug before Intel told US govt – and how bitter tech rivals teamed up

ArrZarr
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Joke

Says Thoguht, somebody with experience in the matter.

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Hmm, there's something fishy about this graph charting AMD's push into Intel's server turf

ArrZarr
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Happy

That graph is an amazing example of misleading axes. Tempted to use it as an example of dodgy stats.

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Boffins build a NAZI AI – wait, let's check that... OK, it's a grammar nazi

ArrZarr
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Re: It will be the end of puns as we know them

What a Brave new World.

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Think tank calls for post-Brexit national ID cards: The kids have phones so what's the difference?

ArrZarr
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For the sake of my sanity, I have to believe that if this were implemented, it either wouldn't be that stupid or would need additional data - a 4 digit code with timed expiry that also requires correlating information like name or NI number.

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Trump 'not normal' FCC commish reveals amid Sinclair-Tribune mega-media-merger meltdown

ArrZarr
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Joke

Re: RE: The FCC is an independent agency

It would make the American Timber industry great again.

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ArrZarr
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Coat

Re: The Fake President is the epitome of Greed

They can join the UK in an endless spiral downhill while constantly referencing the time that they were great. We can even give them some tips on how to manage a constant slide to irrelevance as smoothly as falling head-first down a flight of stairs.

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Early experiment in mass email ends with mad dash across office to unplug mail gateway

ArrZarr
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Facepalm

Re: alert emails

Nothing that large, but I once misplaced a line of code to send an email for every row of a 65,000 line product feed, not at the end of the 65,000 line product feed to a whole team.

The IT guy was on holiday at the time.

Oops.

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HPE supercomputer is still crunching numbers in space after 340 days

ArrZarr
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If anybody here ends up writing a linux distro specifically designed for space usage and doesn't call it "Sputnix" then I will be immensely disappointed.

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How much do you think Cisco's paying erstwhile Brit PM David Cameron?

ArrZarr
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Is it just me or..

Does "G" look an awful lot like Rob Bryden?

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Declassified files reveal how pre-WW2 Brits smashed Russian crypto

ArrZarr
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Coat

Re: Paranoia and hot pockets

When you started talking about "Boris", I though you meant Boris Johnson.

The broken English part made sense and from there I had visions of BoJo being a Russian spy until I realised what you actually meant.

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British Airways' latest Total Inability To Support Upwardness of Planes* caused by Amadeus system outage

ArrZarr
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Black Helicopters

How can knowing which platform a train leaves from be a security problem?

I can think of several ways I could abuse this knowledge if I were so inclined, generally involving timers planted well ahead of time.

Luckily I'm not so inclined which means that the GCHQ bod reading this can calm down.

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Ah, British summer. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, the internet is on the fritz

ArrZarr
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Happy

Re: Pick two from the trinity

When you pay for Good and Fast, however, this is a bit annoying ;)

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