back to article How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works? Ah, thought so: nothing

"Congratulations, Mrs Necessity, you have a child. Have you thought of a name? Really? Hmm, unusual. Is that Slavic?" Sure enough, a year of lockdowns has produced some amazing inventions resulting from extraordinary feats of human ingenuity. Future generations will learn how this was an exciting time of fast-tracked anti- …

  1. macjules Silver badge
    Angel

    How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

    £37Bn in used notes and subject to Baroness Dido Harding being appointed CEO ... she might even do a rendition of Thank You. Oh wait, not that Dido.

    1. Red Ted Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      Ah yes, that highly reliable and "world beating" Test and Trace system that failed to deliver data to eight local authorities for three weeks. Which in turn may have contributed to the spread of the Indian variant in the UK.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      Dido Queen of Carnage.

    3. Eclectic Man Silver badge

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      The privatised / farmed out definitely NOT NHS managed 'NHS Test and Trace'* 'service' headed by Dido Baroness Harding has been blamed for being too inefficient to curtail the recent so-called 'India' variant of Covid-19 currently troubling the UK in a few specific areas (but likely to visit a town near YOU soon).

      *It does actually work, just not quite quickly enough to really constrain the virus propagation.

      1. hoola Silver badge

        Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

        Or cope with the numbers of people that appear to be incapable of following the simplest of rules/guidance/requirements.

        That is a human issue that appears to be unique to the UK.

    4. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      The very biggest part of the £37 billion is thrown at the cost of tests, PCR and LFT which are being liberally hurled at as many people as possible. Not this app thing, which is a small sliver of that budget.

    5. steviebuk Silver badge

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      And after I tested positive but my partner didn't (I never had symptoms and never got ill) the app, correctly told me to isolate when I gave it my details. Where it failed massively is the app then never pinged my partners phone to tell her to isolate.

      I got calls from the track and trace people and told them about this. They took notes and said they'd pass info on. Put the issue on the play store for the review. Kept getting the bullshit excuse that the phones need to be within range for it to register. We fucking live together, the phone is within range all fucking day.

      We both isolated but anyone else may have said "Well my app hasn't told me to isolate so I'm off out".

      The fact they tried to sneak a cheeky update recently that was blocked by Apple and Google on Android means its now uninstalled.

      1. Shalghar

        Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

        Sounds a lot like the 70 million euro and increasing cost "Corona Warn App", thats a mere bloatware frontend for the haphazard google ENF.

        Instead of fixing the still not working warning function, the creepware will get the spyware tracking "contact tracing" Luca-App implemented and is rumoured to get another privacy invasion, the so called digital vaccination pass also plugined "soon" (tm).

        While the official laudatio promotes the "Corona Warn App" as something useful, non privacy invading and functional, the reliance on googles untrustworthy ENF as well as the user complaints about lack of functionality, regular data loss and general inability to work on non googled phones also show that the free variant of this pocketfillware is not only free but also excels in the very core functionalities - privacy and reliable (warn) functionality where the official app blatantly and consistently fails.

    6. ITMA

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      Do you have a track record in running things you have absolutely no experience in and/or overseen monumental IT screwups (TalktTalk data breaches - plural)?

    7. hoola Silver badge

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works?

      The £37 billion is a nice large headline number that is latched onto for test and trace and then used to claim that this is the cost of the App

      Whilst I agree the initial attempts at the App and the subsequent one we have may not have offered value for money, most of the funding is actually being spent on delivering everything to do with the testing and the manual elements of trace. The £37 billion is also an allocation, not what has been spent.

      If the source is correct:

      Test and trace App development ant running £43 million

      Overall expenditure £5.7 billion to November 2020.

      https://fullfact.org/health/test-trace-march-2021/

      Other sources also come up with very similar numbers.

      Now I know when the debacle of the App first surfaced there was significant criticism on this forum, and rightly so but there needs to be a greater sense of perspective with how much has actually been spend and where. Allegations that Serco have been given £37 billion are just wrong.

  2. Mr Dogshit

    Zut alors

    I wish I had pangolins in my garden

    1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

      Re: Zut alors

      BBQ in mind?

  3. trevorde Silver badge

    Rozier is totally unsuitable

    * not a member of the Tory party

    * didn't study with BoJo

    * never heard of Matt Hancock (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-56145492)

    * competent

    1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

      Re: Rozier is totally unsuitable

      I think the last criteria there is the one that will not get him a job over here in our test and trace thing...

  4. Headley_Grange Silver badge

    How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

    You'd have to define "Works" a bit better first. Have you got a requirements spec.?

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

      Have you got a requirements spec.?

      Don't be silly, it's all Agile now.

      1. sgp Bronze badge

        Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

        Rozier didn't have one but that didn't stop him creating reportedly highly effective software.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

          But what do you cover your ass with when what you thought your software should do 6 months ago turns out to have been incorrect? All this Agile nonsense means you have to rely on your software being useful!

        2. ThatOne Silver badge

          Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

          > Rozier didn't have one but that didn't stop him creating reportedly highly effective software.

          Yeah but the point isn't "efficient", it is "to specs": Bureaucracy creates rules which create more bureaucracy, efficiency isn't required or even wanted. Bureaucracy thrives on inefficiency.

          1. Disk0
            Coat

            Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

            That sounds suspiciously like one of the core Vogon philosophical tenets.

            1. ThatOne Silver badge

              Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

              > That sounds suspiciously like one of the core Vogon philosophical tenets.

              There is a reason to that: Vogons are supposed to be the ultimate bureaucrats... Nobody said they were fictional characters.

    2. Version 1.0 Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: How much would you pay me to develop a COVID tracking app that actually works

      "Works" is easy to define this days.

      It "works" if the company employing him for nothing gets a nice big fat payment from the NHS, no need to worry about functionality or any bugs, the tracking app can be updated every few days and the NHS charged again.

  5. Joe W Silver badge

    Tea....

    .... and out came a substance that was almost, but not entirely, completely unlike tea.

    (from memory, possibly mangled, original by D. Adams, The hitch-hiker's guide to the galaxy)

    That video is an abominaton unto nuggan!

    1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Tea....

      Was that an actual "influencer" doing that video? Because I found her annoying to listen to for more than a few seconds.

      I think I can figure out how to make tea. And, if not, I have friends who can help. I do not need an "instructional" video.

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: Tea....

        Was that an actual "influencer" doing that video? Because I found her annoying to listen to for more than a few seconds.

        'influencer' is still an 'influencer' even if the only influence they might have is to not watch anything else by them.

        Still an overrated label, but I think the only people that get excited about it is advertisers.

        1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

          Re: Tea....

          One of kindest comments ever made to me here was by a reader hoping to insult me: "You're certainly no influencer."

          1. Sam not the Viking
            Pint

            Re: Tea....

            It's a badge of honour.

            Here's the award----->

      2. logicalextreme Silver badge

        Re: Tea....

        She's taking the piss out of instructional videos and the stereotype of US ignorance.

        1. cmdrklarg

          Re: Tea....

          Speaking as a USian, that's no stereotype.

          1. ecofeco Silver badge

            Re: Tea....

            Can confirm. It's no stereotype.

          2. Blank Reg Silver badge

            Re: Tea....

            Watching your political system at work (or more accurately not working) makes it abundantly clear that ignorance is alive and well and thriving in the USA

        2. Robert Grant Silver badge

          Re: Tea....

          The second recipe makes that clear. Thank goodness!

      3. Terry 6 Silver badge

        Re: Tea....

        The tone of voice seems ubiquitous among the (fortunately very few) American influencers I've stumbled across.

        Maybe it's something in the water (but clearly not tea leaves).

      4. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Tea....

        Knew a couple that both of them were third generation Canadian from British parents.

        Husband insisted on a test taste of his tea making skills, compared with his wifes more conventional approach.

        His solution was to boil water & teabags in a saucepan, the stewed beverage he served up in a mug, was rejected without tasting.

        1. jmch Silver badge

          Re: Tea....

          "was rejected without tasting"

          "green eggs and ham" comes to mind

    2. KittenHuffer Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: Tea....

      Part of my email signature at w**k states that I'm ISO 3103 certified!

      And in the last 2 years nobody has questioned, queried or laughed about it!

      ---------> post 'launch' testing of my Friday tea!

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Tea....

        Thank you, I've just added that to my resume.

      2. ItWasn'tMe

        Re: Tea....

        Hmmm, is there an auditor qualification?

    3. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Tea....

      First was a crime against British culture in calling that British tea ( I suspect she couldn't point to Britain on a map if it was union jack coloured).

      Second was crime against humanity, whatever that was in that bowl it was not a tea, possibly it consituted a threat to US national security.

      I can only feel sorry for the child following her instructions.

      1. logicalextreme Silver badge

        Re: Tea....

        Looks like anything involving tea is the kryptonite to El Reg commenters' joke filters :D

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Tea....

          Absolutely! It was blindingly obvious to anyone not American that it was a mickey-take :-)

      2. HildyJ Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Tea....

        Keep in mind, as far as British culture, Britain did invent instant tea.

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

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Tea....

      Sounds like ISO3103.

    5. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      Re: Tea....

      The video may not be a joke. I might have posted this before, but it deserves repeating as a cautionary tale. My (now sadly dead and still very much missed) friend talked of how his mother (from Manchester, UK) made tea. Those of a sensitive disposition should look away now:

      1. Two-thirds fill mug with cold water

      2. Insert teabag (more likely than not from the pile of dried, already used, bags by the sink)

      3. Microwave for exactly two minutes on full power

      4. Remove teabag back to drying area

      5. Add skimmed UHT milk to brim

      6. Add sugar as required, but don't stir (because it would slop over the side of the mug, obviously)

      My friends wife, not blessed with the sort of humour that would make it easy for her to go along with the joke with a straight face, claimed it was true, and, when I had a chance to talk to some of my friend's siblings, they maintained it was true in every detail. Whether it was a very well-worn joke in the family, or really the way the lady made tea, I will never know.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Tea....

        "The video may not be a joke."

        It's a sendup, and nearly a year old at that. She was trolling to get hits. It worked. In fact, it seems to still be working. I wonder how many thousand dollars she has made from all you outraged people.

      2. Snapper
        Coffee/keyboard

        Re: Tea....

        I visit lots of IT clients in my job.

        The variety of methods and results are....mixed, but this one about ten years ago took the biscuit (which was stale).

        1) Put Earl Grey teabag in mug.

        2) Pour hot water from tap into mug.

        3) Put mug in microwave to heat it a bit more.

        4) Remove from microwave to test heat.

        5) Return mug to microwave if heat not deemed sufficient.

        6) Add tinned Carnation milk to taste.

        7) Dip biscuit in liquid and suck noisily.

        Funnily enough I found enough urgent things to do that I wasn't able to finish mine.

  6. Teiwaz Silver badge

    Lockdown

    You're probably not the only one...to feel they have failed to 'reinvent yourself' during the lockdown.

    I have a feeling lockdown inferiority syndrome is only going to grow.

    Personally, I failed to do much more than watch cat vids on youtube (mostly).

    1. William Towle
      Thumb Up

      Re: Lockdown

      Definite nod.

      When I had a commute I passed the time reading the newspaper from cover to cover, and enjoyed feeling enlightened when something that had only got a few column inches came up in the pub's quiz.

      With that gone I've been able to enjoy music, comedy, and documentaries as before but with (nearly) no overhead transferring between formats/devices intermittently. This has enhanced the enjoyment greatly.

      I may not have achieved anything "productive" with my time either (compared to some people writing blog articles about what they've managed) but I've staved off cabin fever by and large, and I'm calling that a win whatever anyone else thinks.

    2. Disk0
      Holmes

      Re: Lockdown

      I propose the term HOLI - Having missed Out on Lockdown self Improvement, with the alternating capitals appropriately forming a four-letter word that bears a resemblance to, but isn’t quite, an english word, however suggestiviely and capriciously holding some impossibly ephemeral middle ground between being a religious trope, a designation of constructive imperfection, not quite an Americana-infused meme substitute, and pop-art, while simultaneously and with equal probability being the utterance of an intensely constipated pseudo-bureaucratic but selfproclaimed creatively expressive mind, or equally likely the intersected brainchild of a console addict and your father-in-law’s imaginary version of 1337speak. Or maybe both.

    3. CAPS LOCK

      Re: Lockdown

      Time spent watching cat videos is never wasted. Also check out the videos of Puma Messi...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hello diabetes

    That wasn't a cup of tea, it was a tea flavoured sugar drink.

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Re: Hello diabetes

      I drink my tea black, with lemon juice. No sugar (yes lemon juice has some, but). I drink my coffee black no sugar too, but no lemon juice. Freshly ground, aeropress ATM.

  8. Roger Kynaston Silver badge

    If Clouseau can get one

    I should have thought that a non fictional person who has done real good should merit having the rules waived a bit.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: If Clouseau can get one

      ...or maybe there are other "Honours" which can be bestowed which don't involve bending or breaking the "rules".

      1. Strahd Ivarius Bronze badge

        Re: If Clouseau can get one

        In this case, it is l'Ordre du Mérite

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No medal for him

    From the country that hands out a medal to women who have had three children.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No medal for him

      You squeeze something that size out of your nether regions three times, you deserve a bloody medal!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No medal for him

      The medals-for-children thing was about breeding fresh new soldiers (after the old ones had been sacrificed for nothing by the brain dead generals).

  10. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    24 years old - an old man!

    Here in soggy Cymru, we have our own Covid data hero - Lloyd Warburton from Aberystwyth, who basically did exactly the same thing to make statistics accessible for Cymru, months before Welsh Government got sorted. He was 15 when he started. He's still doing it (and has added vaccine stats) while doing his A-levels.

    His website is at https://coronaviruscymru.wales/

    We also have https://portalcovidcymru.co.uk/least_map.html which is an excellent data-crunching site developed by Dr. Lowri Williams, a data scientist in Caerdydd who's done a lot to break down and map the data to local levels so we can easily see how far away the nearest cases are.

    Cymru leading the world!

    1. Alistair Dabbs Silver badge

      Re: 24 years old - an old man!

      The world underestimates Cymru at its peril. Worked there, have friends running thriving IT businesses there.

      1. Baudwalk

        Is the place full of…

        …data leeks?

        1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Is the place full of…

          Cue sheepish looks when they occur.....

          Oh well Live & Let Dai.

          1. Graham Dawson Silver badge

            Re: Is the place full of…

            Preaching to the choir.

            1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

              Re: Is the place full of…

              Welsh Development Agency advert...

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eozO09thrE&t=2s

              Whatever happened to... Sony in Wales? Should be familiar to Reg readers who tinker...

              Unfortunately, there is also the NTNON take on it. Referencing that here as I am sure someone is bound to mention.

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCEamUarOSI

              Still, hope and optimism is what the original is about

      2. Janne Smith

        Re: 24 years old - an old man!

        Fear Of A Welsh Planet

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: 24 years old - an old man!

          Death to vowels!!!

          1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
            Alert

            Re: 24 years old - an old man!

            Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.

            Only missing a 'u'

            1. jake Silver badge

              Re: 24 years old - an old man!

              Missing might be a trifle strong. I think lacking might be a better word.

      3. stiine Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: 24 years old - an old man!

        Underestimates? Most of us can't even pronounce it.

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: 24 years old - an old man!

      His website is at https://coronaviruscymru.wales/

      Should that not be https://coronaviruscymru.cymru/ :-))))

  11. Dr_N Silver badge
    Coffee/keyboard

    Boomers and Gen-Xers.

    Bras d'honneur well deserved after this Spectacle de la Merde.

    At least we can sit outside a cafe with a coffee now. (Until the next wave of plague.)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Boomers and Gen-Xers.

      At least we can sit outside a cafe with a coffee now.

      I even had lunch on a sunny terrasse yesterday. Almost felt normal.

  12. TheSkunkyMonk

    Not a chance he will get a government job, he can clearly identify problems and create practical solutions quickly and at a very low cost, he will never be allowed through the door. Think my local waste disposal team even have more management than labourers.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Able to deliver without faffing about. Did not need to consult a committee. Able to quickly align his vendors. Created a product easily and quickly understood by the target market that was accurate and of high quality.

      He'll never be able to get job anywhere.

      Not even joking.

    2. werdsmith Silver badge

      He has managed to set up websites that take 10 million hits. Assuming it is more than just static html, I wonder what kind of front end of multinode, load balanced DOS resistant infrastructure he used and how much it is costing him.

      1. Strahd Ivarius Bronze badge

        OVH provided the infrastructure at not cost for him

    3. veti Silver badge

      What he has shown is that he can build a useful and usable app, and meet needs that aren't being otherwise addressed.

      That's a great ability, practically a superpower in itself - if he decides to set up his own business. But it's a very different skill set from what most employers want, and it would definitely be wasted in the public sector (where the obsession from public watchdog types is not "is he doing something useful?", but rather "is he doing what he's told?").

      A government job is probably the last thing he wants.

    4. ThatOne Silver badge
      Devil

      > Not a chance he will get a government job

      Yes, because he would make everyone there look bad... Always hire people worse than you, quality is relative, and in the country of the blind visually impaired, the one-eyed man is king.

  13. JClouseau
    Pint

    Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

    This, just this, in large amounts ----------------------------------------->

    The site is brilliant, the guy seems rather modest and in his description actually speaks French instead of using "Big Data" (traitement des masses de données). My hero.

    I'm happy this young talented fellow will have been a fellow citizen, if only for a few years.

    Because no doubt he'll soon be nabbed by some US borg company with Deep Pockets and fly away to California (or, these days, more likely Texas/Florida).

    I hope he's really bad in English. Or can't live without his raw milk Camembert.

    1. Daedalus Silver badge

      Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

      He's likely to be sucked into a corporate black hole where meetings, evaluations and recriminations work to abolish all hope of real work.

      I just landed a gig where I am supposed to become an "expert resource" on an obscure application framework supporting legacy this and that in one of those businesses where salesmanship trumps common sense. I await my list of meeting obligations.....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

      Nah, any self-respecting large US corp will demand that he have 5-10 years of experience in developing COVID-19 related apps as a prerequisite for the job.

    3. jake Silver badge

      Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

      "Or can't live without his raw milk Camembert."

      Some of the best Camembert (and Brie) I've ever had was made right here in Sonoma County, California. Made in the French style, with bugs imported from France over 150 years ago.

      https://marinfrenchcheese.com/

      They ship. Try it before you poo-poo it.

      Most people (including Yanks!) don't know it, but California is a big Dairy state, the number one milk producer in the nation ... producing nearly a third more milk than #2, Wisconsin.

      1. ThatOne Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

        I guess your downvotes come from French readers... They are very peculiar about their star products, and can't stand the idea other countries can also have excellent wines and cheeses...

        I'm going to share in your downvotes by narrating that I heard about a french cheese maker who had spent a year in the US to learn how to make a specific niche french cheese! Seems the ancestral know-how is slowly lost in France, probably due to the industrialization of the sector, while passionate "roots" cheesemakers in other countries still keep it alive.

        1. Strahd Ivarius Bronze badge

          Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

          Last time I saw an US "camembert" it was in a metal box akin to the ones sardines com from...

          Go to Camembert village so see their "museum of horrors" (but don't try the ones they offer there, they have only industrial ones from Lactalis, where the only difference between brands is the packaging...).

          Note that Camembert is not one of the best cheese in France, only the most known, especially since the name is not protected meaning that you can produce it anywhere, the recipe being rather basic.

      2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Re: Vive la Fra..... oh, wait.

        Some of the best Camembert (and Brie) I've ever had was made right here in Sonoma County, California.

        Funny, I'm just reading an old James Bond novel (Live and Let Die). Apart from the stereotypical (for the time) descriptions of black people that would give the PC crowd conniptions, it contains a scene with Bond and Solitaire having dinner, where he orders "some of the domestic Camembert that is one of the most welcome surprises on American menus", and that was in the 1950s.

  14. Warm Braw Silver badge

    There may be a government job waiting

    Are they trying to frighten him off?

  15. Eclectic Man Silver badge
    Happy

    Every Day

    is Cheese Sandwich day.

  16. 7teven 4ect

    Astavakrasana

    Jumping from downward dog into Astavakrasana is actually fun.

    It's the press handstand out of Astavakrasana that isn't so fun if you have hips like mine

  17. Tempest
    Thumb Up

    Not Every Country had a Total Lockdown

    Several countries have avoided total lockdowns. although they have had regional isolation zones - China for one. Kampuchea and Laos had regional closures. All land gateways were closed

    VietNam had a "lockdown" for a couple of weeks after travelers and some illegal Chinese border crossers infected areas of the country. There are several "flying squads" who vigorously stamp out outbreaks by isolating areas using road and water / river closures.

    The big difference has been attitude and compliance. Mask usage was without complaint; large screen video screens were connected to thermal cameras (for all to see); temperature monitoring occurred at smaller venues, and spray bottles were available everywhere.

    Instead of using Plod to harass / arrest people, the Cong An (Peoples Police) handed out masks and bottled water to poor people unable to afford masks. If a motorcyclist was seen without a mask a blast of a whistle or the honk of a horn was sufficient to ensure compliance.

    People here can't understand why protests and violence was vented against mask use in the USA and Europe.

    Mass vaccinations have just commenced this month, but given the population is around 190-million souls, it will take a while to complete.

    1. TheMeerkat Bronze badge

      Re: Not Every Country had a Total Lockdown

      Mask usage is a theatre.

      There is zero scientific evidence that introduction of rules requiring masks made any difference.

      It is social distancing that matter, not wearing face nappy to demonstrate your compliance.

  18. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    He has now been recognized

    According to today's French press, Rozier has now been made "chevalier de l’ordre national du Mérite" (roughly the equivalent of an OBE), despite not having the usually-required length of service.

    1. stiine Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: He has now been recognized

      Good for him, and the French who have benefited from his work.

      icon: its not a wine glass, but you can drink wine by the pint!

  19. Eclectic Man Silver badge
    Flame

    My 'hard left' credentials

    Are totally destroyed by having to admit that the non-government employee, M. Rozier has been far more effective than HMG or French government in producing efficient and useful technology for communicating useful information concerning Covid-19 to the general public.

    You clearly wouldn't get that sort of service from the people who gave you the Home Office's e-borders IT system (cancelled), the Post Office's Horizon (led to hundreds of people being falsely accused and convicted of false accounting and fraud) or the Child Support Agency's IT system (a complete farce which ignored existing arrangements for child support agreed by courts and took one father to court to insist that he pay £100 *less* per month than he already was to support his ex-wife and children).

    (Actually my 'hard left' credentials are having voted for a Labour Party candidate who got elected to parliament only twice in the last 40 years, so I'm pretty much the saggy-jumper-wearing, tree-hugging, bleeding-heart, soggy liberal who dithers over everything and is therefore the worst of all political sub-types. I may have a minor breakdown while my deeply held political beliefs are rebooted, please be patient with me.)

  20. Bruce Ordway

    Ursula Le Guin

    Good stuff

    1. Graham Lockley

      Re: Ursula Le Guin

      Why do people keep leaving out the K ?

      1. Richard 26

        Re: Ursula Le Guin

        "Why do people keep leaving out the K ?"

        Probably because her publishers often do.

      2. jake Silver badge

        Re: Ursula Le Guin

        Probably because it's superfluous in this context. A simple Le Guin would probably suffice in most places, and Ursula would likely get the meaning across with ElReg's loyal Commentardariat.

        1. ThatOne Silver badge

          Re: Ursula Le Guin

          > Probably because it's superfluous in this context

          Indeed: The trademark, the author name she used and everyone knows is "Ursula Le Guin". Few of her readers know (or care!) she was born Ursula Kroeber, so it is irrelevant in the context.

          1. Graham Lockley

            Re: Ursula Le Guin

            I have a few early paperbacks (bought from new and my first exposure to the author) that have the K in the authors name. Not something I would start arguing about but because of this I always think 'K Le Guin' when she is mentioned.

            1. ThatOne Silver badge

              Re: Ursula Le Guin

              > I have a few early paperbacks [...] that have the K in the authors name

              I see. Mine don't, so I guess that's why our opinions diverge...

  21. simonlb
    Thumb Up

    I Wish I could Upvote The Whole Article

    Dabbsy, I'm probably in a minority here, but if I could upvote the article I would, just on the strength of you having a link to Saints and Liars by Gary Numan. A truly brilliant track from an epic album.

    You, Sir, have taste.

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