back to article My bad! So you're saying that redacting an on-screen PDF with Tipp-Ex won't work?

I have never indecently exposed myself. On the contrary, I do it rather well. Just this week, I accidentally showed my privates to a virtual room full of delegates during an online training course. Nobody complained. Mind you, it's not the kind of thing that gets asked about in the delegate feedback form, is it? I wonder how I …

  1. Pete B

    So now we know who was behind the Gamestock rises!

  2. Potemkine! Silver badge

    The Weekly Cultural Moment

    Each time I read a new column from Mr. Dabbs, each time I learn at least one English word unknown to me before.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

      Which English word was it this week?

      1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Bronze badge
        Coat

        Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

        Périphérique

        1. disgruntled yank Silver badge

          Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

          I would not be in the least surprised to learn that the word turns up in an American spelling bee. Oh, for the days of The Hoosier Schoolmaster, when "theodolite" was as esoteric as it got.

      2. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

        I'd guess proctor.

      3. KittenHuffer Silver badge

        Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

        I got mine a few days ago, and it was Pareidolia! Seeing images or patterns where none actually exist. Faces in clouds, etc.

        1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

          Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

          This morning, I have been teaching 'gestalt' theory in graphic design. Mmm, gestaaaaalt. Lovely on chips.

          1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

            Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

            Rule of thumb: anyone mentions anything 'Gestalt', run away.

            By the way, 'Gestalt' is colloquial for 'questionable person' / 'idiot'.

          2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

            Is he the one from Rivia with the white hair?

          3. 2+2=5 Silver badge

            Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

            'Gestalt' was the name given to API functionality in the original Macintosh that allowed you as the developer to query the OS to see if there was support for a given feature. This enabled a media player, for example, to be installed and fail gracefully on files for which there wasn't a codec installed, but work for the rest. If the codec was subsequently installed then the media player would 'just work' with no further changes.

            The Windows way was to check the Windows version and refuse to install if it wasn't high enough.

            1. Mage Silver badge
              Paris Hilton

              Re: The Windows way

              "The Windows way was to check the Windows version and refuse to install if it wasn't high enough."

              No, that was lazy programmers.

              I'm sure back in the early 2000s there was a TechNet or MSDN article warning NOT to do it. Certainly I read an MS article explaining. Because features supported is more important than OS version.

              I had preview USB stack for NT4.0 and of course USB device drivers mostly wouldn't install, because instead of looking for USB they looked for NT5.* (2K was 5.0). Naturally some suspect NT9.0 was skipped due to programs looking for 9.x, but really Win7 should have been 6.<something> as an increment to Vista, Win8 was really win 7 and Win 10 should have been Win 8.

              1. Franco Silver badge

                Re: The Windows way

                "but really Win7 should have been 6.<something> as an increment to Vista, Win8 was really win 7"

                They were, internally. WMI queries to ID the OS version, E.g. for SCCM collections, will show that Windows 7 is NT Workstation 6.1, Windows 8 is 6.2 and Windows 8.1 is 6.3.

                The Vista name had to be retired though, because it had such a huge stigma around it.

              2. J.G.Harston Silver badge

                Re: The Windows way

                Definitely lazy programmers. I've been ranting about this for almost four decades. Things like code that does: "find machine type, declare that this machine has no clock" instead of "look for a clock, if there is no clock then there is no clock".

                In fact, not even lazy programmers, it's worse than lazy, it's... well I don't know what to call it, people with a hole in a certain part of their brain... programmers. Being "lazy" would be assigning them more mental activity than they actually did.

                1. Rich 11 Silver badge

                  Re: The Windows way

                  "find machine type, declare that this machine has no clock" instead of "look for a clock, if there is no clock then there is no clock"

                  It's flawed logic.

                  (I'd say "that's all", but unfortunately it is in fact everything.)

              3. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
                Joke

                Re: The Windows way

                The ghosts of Windows past (ME, Vista and WIN8) will visit on Win13

          4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

            Don't forget the gevinegar.

          5. a pressbutton

            Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

            You would not notice that condiment consciously

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

        3. yetanotheraoc

          Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

          Hmm, so when I see a face in a cloud, you are saying it doesn't actually look like a face. How much does it have to not look like a face before I am officially Pareidoliac? I'm starting to worry, because sometimes the not-really-a-face-shape cloud shape is pretty convincing.

          Unless you are talking about AWS, in which case I'm fine.

        4. Robert Carnegie Silver badge
          Joke

          Pareidolia

          Isn't a word, it just looks like one.

          (Namely: Parabola.)

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

      Rewinding back 3 weeks, to when there was a reference to Toyah and Robert's Sunday Lockdown, the following article, which appeared yesterday has Toyah recounting the background to that video...

      https://www.theguardian.com/culture/2021/feb/04/toyah-willcox-my-mother-always-wanted-me-altered-in-some-way-i-was-never-right

      (2nd paragraph onwards)

      1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

        Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

        Impressed that a Toyah interview can totally ignore her finest career moment as a creative artist, doing the intro voice to Teletubbies.

    3. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: The Weekly Cultural Moment

      Recently I learned about "mews houses" here on El Reg. We don't have those in the US.

  3. Dr_N Silver badge

    Lego™®

    Is Lego butt-clenching the new WFH exercise fad?

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Lego™®

      The exercise is called "two minutes of silent screaming in agony".

      1. JClouseau

        Re: Lego™®

        Pah, not even that.

        In these days of wokeness even Lego parts have lost their "edge". I can't stand how they now make custom "bricks" for some specific sets.

        OF COURSE you can't build a proper Bugatti Chiron using only the good old "jump-to-the-ceiling-in-pain-when-walking-on-in-the-dark" bricks !

        But perhaps I'm just getting old and grumpy.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Lego™®

          Start the "Campaign for Real Lego"

          (we also demand that all Lego figurines have full beards)

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        2. Mage Silver badge
          Alert

          Re: Lego™®

          Walking on lego in the dark? Nothing compared to spilled drawing pins, tacks or BS1362 plugs. The rectangular 3 pin plugs also used in countries other than the UK.

          Or warhammer models. The owner will beat you to death.

          1. Allan George Dyer
            Joke

            Re: Lego™®

            @Mage - "Or warhammer models"

            You mean the ones where the 25mm tall figure is wielding a 6-foot sword? Not a scale 6-foot sword, literally 6-foot.

            1. CAPS LOCK

              Re: Lego™®

              Is this some kind of new euphemism I'm not familiar with? ('Till now, obv.)

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

    was it, however, a lowly employee, one of those famously underpaid (or, unpaid), world-wide army that work for peanuts / sex / nothing, as an unavoidable 1st step in their long and successful career? If so, it's a massive EU fail, given the context of the documents (what's more important... secret plans to start WW3?). If, however, it was a "specialist" on a healthy, say, between EUR 100K - 200K pay, perks included, with a long, and exceptional job history, that includes practical skills of knife and fork-throwing, breaking into non-EU safes AND extensive academic knowledge of history of pdf-redaction fuckups that goes back at least 20 years, than it's a massive EU fail. And I wonder, if anyone can create a bot to crawl through the EU hundreds of sites (possibly more), live and dead, as well as not-quite-dead, and scrape all the redacted documents, who knows, how many, perhaps all of them contain such privileged, "redacted" information?

    p.s. This latest AstraZeneca (but in reality, UK-EU) debacle was a sharp stress test, on top of the even more massive covid stress-test situation. While it confirmed the urban myth about the UK, it also revealed how the EU masters react in a high-stress situation. It's not inspiring.

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

      > secret plans to start WW3?

      Yes. Though it is called World War 3.0 now. Sounds better.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

        I'll wait for 3.1, never trust .0 releases.

        1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

          Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

          But don't wait for 3.11 because that will be the "Microsoft for War" patch where world peace starts sharpish.

        2. keith_w Bronze badge

          Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

          is there going to be a War for Workgroups version?

          1. Rich 11 Silver badge

            Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

            I certainly wish to avoid the Work for Wargroups version.

      2. James Anderson

        Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

        Current historical thinking is that WW2 was really WW1.1, so accounting for the Cold War it should really be WW1.3, Maybe it will be referred to as the Vista-ster.

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

      plans to start WW3"

      Eye 1520 cover...

      "IT'S WORLD WAR FLU!"

      https://www.private-eye.co.uk/pictures/covers/full/1540_big.jpg

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Meh

      Re: Last week's PDF redaction fail by a lowly employee of the European Union, however,

      Either way, it'd a massive EU fail, and that's what's important. Do you write for the Express by the way?

  5. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    "it's only simple when you know how to do it"

    How true.

  6. isprcoe
    WTF?

    Black Tippex

    Many, many years ago in the days of green on black monitors, the computer operators at a place I worked had blacktippex as the operator password.

    1. AW-S

      Multi-coloured Tipp-Ex

      On my first day at work (1981-07-13) - with an engineering company - I was sent to the admin office to get striped Tipp-Ex and a long weight.

      It did actually happen to me - although after about 15 minutes waiting - I realised the joke. Suddenly I was part of the team.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Multi-coloured Tipp-Ex

        You idiot, you should have just ordered it online

        1. EnviableOne Silver badge

          Re: Multi-coloured Tipp-Ex

          while that response may be accepable in the 00s or 20s it was definatley not acceptable in the 80s.

          you'd have got run over by the 9:18 to bedford

          Spoken from the experience of getting a long stand, Tartan Paint, Photocopies of Braile Menus, and some wonderfull substance called "ICE MIX" tha turns water to cubes.

          1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Bronze badge

            Re: Multi-coloured Tipp-Ex

            "ice mix". New to me. Every day is a school day.

            We had a labourer who didn't need to be send for striped paint. He didn't mix it properly and it dried with the sort of graduated tints that normally needs an artist with a palette full of colours to achieve.

          2. Shooter

            Re: Multi-coloured Tipp-Ex

            >> while that response may be accepable in the 00s or 20s it was definatley not acceptable in the 80s.

            Well, it would certainly have involved a long wait...

    2. dajames Silver badge

      Re: Black Tippex

      Many, many years ago in the days of green on black monitors, the computer operators at a place I worked had blacktippex as the operator password.

      You shouldn't have said that ... they'll have to change it, now!

  7. Warm Braw Silver badge

    ... whereupon it was immediately withdrawn

    You mean they refused to back your snitch up?

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: ... whereupon it was immediately withdrawn

      Probably just as well, a backed-up snitch is very unpleasant.

      1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

        Re: ... whereupon it was immediately withdrawn

        >> a backed-up snitch is very unpleasant

        That can happen if the Lego brick slips.

  8. Kane Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    'Mind you, I didn't do my cause any favours with neighbouring Diana fans by marking the two-minutes' silence during her funeral by opening all my windows, turning the volume on my hi-fi to maximum and playing "Smack My Bitch Up".'

    Absolute bloody savage.

    Love it.

    RIP Keith Flint

    1. Red Ted Silver badge
      Go

      ... and during her funeral

      I went out for a ride on my motorcycle.

      There was so little traffic on the roads it was great and, yes, I might have explored the performance limits too. (No, I didn't crash!)

      1. John Arthur

        Re: ... and during her funeral

        I did too. Our local Laverda dealer was having an open day with test rides. I went with a mate and he went out first. They would not let two of us out together so I had to wait until he came back. Half an hour, an hour, still no sign. Eventually he reappeared, on foot, having run out of fuel a few miles away. They went and fetched it, loaded into the van as it was the end of the day, and disappeared.

        Mind you I did have a good ride when she and Chuckles got married. And Cup Final days before video recorders - magic!

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      I was driving back late at night on the night before Diana's accident, and listening to the radio, remembered the DJ mentioning that the program will be a "Diana free zone" - this was because of the media frenzy on the preceding days. Little did the DJ know the significance of what they said, a few hours before the fatal crash.

  9. MiguelC Silver badge
    Unhappy

    I let a tear fall

    seeing that awesome Prodigy clip and thinking I'll never be able to experience it again... R.I.P. Keith

    1. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

      Re: I let a tear fall

      In the latest Assassins Creed Valhalla game there is a world event set in Essexe called "The Prodigy" which involves a band, and a man named Keith singing "Smack my Bishop".

      1. KittenHuffer Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: I let a tear fall

        I believe that "Smack my Bishop" might just be a euphimism for something else!!!

        Closest icon I could find ------------->

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: I let a tear fall

          Closest icon I could find

          If you consider that in any way close then I think you really need to make a GP appointment right away.

          1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Bronze badge

            Re: I let a tear fall

            Or you were a witness at the "Romans in Britain" gross indecency trial

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Romans_in_Britain

        2. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

          Re: I let a tear fall

          Given the nature and tone of ACV I believe it's to be taken quite literally. Preferably with Varins bearded axe, with a +3 blunt trauma rune installed.

  10. MOV r0,r0

    A user might assume, in 2021, that redacting a section of a document causes the application to automatically redact concomitant occurrences elsewhere. My guess is the word "adobe" splashed on screen at start-up which is fair warning, you know, there'll be redaction - but it's best reasonable endeavours.

    Fair dinkum except next the Commission triggered the NI protocol. The thing the EU wanted in the WA to protect NI not just walked all over a mere 29 days later but some EU mouthpiece spouting on about "infallibility" mentions the Pope - like this wasn't ever a sectarian conflict - as incompetent as it was insensitive.

    Today Ursula fond-of-Lying, who really should steer clear of mentions of both broomsticks and ships, has claimed steering is not the EU's strong point as it is a "tanker" whereas the UK is a "speedboat" (seriously - go check for yourself). She said there was bound to be a delay as the 27 were given five full days to consider the Commission's vaccine proposal - great Ursula, that explains he first week of delay but how about the other nine because the Commission getting involved added two months compared with the UK's position.

    A number of good and blameless Europeans may die because instead of helping straggling member states with provision the Commission had to impose itself upon them all. If VDL were a tanker she'd be a "wotal tanker", if she were a sailing boat she'd be gaff rigged.

    1. Martin Silver badge
      FAIL

      You might have made some good points, but it was all ruined when you used "Ursula fond-of-Lying". I assume you also use witty names like Bliar and Camoron.

      Downvote administered.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >>>Camoron

        "Hameron" surely?

  11. JWLong Bronze badge

    Dear Mum

    "and the middle name of my mother's probation officer."

    Mum's going to smack you.

  12. DLSmith

    Amazon drivers

    I don't know about others' experiences, but I have not hjad anything but excellent service from Amazon drives. Always put the packages on the front soop, and if it's an envelope, they will put part of it under the door mat so it doesn't blow away. I don't know how much they make, but it isn't enough.

    Kudos to all the Amazon delivery people!!!

    1. eldel

      Re: Amazon drivers

      I'd have to agree with this. Especially when compared to the demented gibbons employed by UPS hereabouts.

    2. Tomato Krill

      Re: Amazon drivers

      Certainly a step up from the DPD chump who left two boxes of mobiles out in the The rain immediately outside my unlocked, open porch - then legged it without bothering to let anyone in the house know they were there

  13. gannett
    FAIL

    HMRC still has wrong/internal .pdf version of SA100 tax return posted for year 2017

    The 2016 SA100 and other years form can be downloaded, completely filled in on screen and printed. The 2017 version only has the .pdf form structured fields for the tax payer identification details on Page 3 but none of the fields that a Tax payer would actually need to fill in. Income, interest etc. From this I conclude that HMRC has posted the wrong version of the .pdf SA-100 form. The one posted seems to be an internal staff form used when staff are manually sending a punter the form and not the one intended for home completion. This posed a problem for doctors and others hand-writingly challenged ( me )

    The other sub-forms for the 2017 tax year and main form for other years did have the .pdf forms fields ready for completion. Capital gains tax, Employee pages etc

    Yes I reached out to them twice ( and El Reg) but form was never fixed and remains the pen only version to this day. See here https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/626131/SA100_2017.pdf

    1. cosymart
      FAIL

      Re: HMRC still has wrong/internal .pdf version of SA100 tax return posted for year 2017

      Your problem here was that you "reached out" to them. Had you simply contacted them Robert would have been your fathers brother long ago.

      1. Robert Grant Silver badge

        Re: HMRC still has wrong/internal .pdf version of SA100 tax return posted for year 2017

        No doubt asking them to "revert back soonest" also confused them, understandably.

  14. a pressbutton

    Playing 'Smack my Bitch Up'

    I was more considerate and quietly read a JG Ballard novel - one of his best imo.

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