* Posts by Graham

20 publicly visible posts • joined 28 Sep 2007

Air France pilot in white-knuckle near miss



Yeah, Air France are great (am flying with them this afternoon) except when things go wrong...

... I used to wonder what a "Gallic shrug" was, after 6 months of flying with Air France Cityjet I have a MUCH better idea!

El Reg celebrates 10th birthday

Dead Vulture

Has it been ten years already?

Blimey ... like others I was sure I've been reading you for longer than that!

Mind you, it could all have passed in a drunken blur, which might explain why I can understand wha' you shay comple--hic--tly.

Noever mind my coat, pass me another pint.

Thanks all, keep it up!

Army says farewell to UK's 'bugger-off' airbag drone


I have to disagree...

"great operational experience"

I'm sure it did provide great experience, of what not to do; the spokesbunny never said "a great operational experience", that would have been indefensible!

Sweet, sweet smell of comments in code?


I smell the unhealthy stench of a crusade.

I'm sure there are some occasions when comments aren't needed... and I'm sure there are occasions when comments aren't helpful.

And I'm sure that trying to write better code is a laudable aim.


In the world of Enterprise Software, where multiple groups of consultants and teams of contractors come and go, comments are essential.

Why? Well it comes down to the premise that "if you need comments then your code isn't good enough". Not sure I agree with that but let's keep with it for a moment. If you've had 5 different groups of consultants or contractors working on some code are you going to be the one that stands up in front of the board of directors and says "I'm sorry but we're screwed. We told all our consultants and contractors that they should rewrite their code until they didn't need comments and because they all have their own writing style it's now a convoluted pile of cack that no one can understand"?

Thought not.

Comments aid communication; over use of comments doesn't but overuse of code doesn't either. The goal of good code and good comments to be able to understand the functional target of the code. If it needs comments put it in, if it might possibly need comments in the future put them in.

But don't ever leave commented out code in place; some muppet will invariably uncomment it and cause havoc (either Gonzo or Fozzie Bear, not sure which).

Terry Pratchett donates £500k to Alzheimer's charity


@All those miserable buggers who think he's being cynical

Who cares?

Did you know how much money goes to Alzheimer's research before? Do you now? Wonder why?

Ok £500k isn't a huge amount in itself... but to misquote the Mastercard advert

Donation to Alzheimer's Charity £500,000

Publicity for Alzheimer's Research Priceless

Before whinging about others being or not being altruistic, go and give money to charity yourself. Whether you shout about it or not is another matter.

\Mine's the tattered one with sequins spelling Wizzzard across the back

DAB: A very British failure

Dead Vulture

So how come Andrew Orlowski wrote this story?

Previously his byline has always been "Andrew Orlowski in San Francisco". Is El Reg offshoring its journalism to struggling ex-colonies? Has Andrew seen sense and come back to the UK? Or did he just have a really, really long holiday in the states and is now back?

Enquiring minds want to know!

Personally I love DAB. Local radio, whether commercial or public is really very, very bad anywhere except a large city, DAB means I get the stations I want to listen to at a decent quality (although as one of them is one of the ones GCAP is attempting to unload from its Xfm franchise I'll be interested to see what happens). Bring on the big stick and make people convert.

Pure Highway in-car DAB radio

Paris Hilton

If you're going to pick up someone's spelling....

"lose" not "loose", but if you're a regular Grauniad reader then it's understandable.

Paris, because if anyone would be appropriate to be "loose" it'd be her.

El Reg decimates English language


You learn something new every day!

Today I learnt: the correct historical meaning of the word "decimate", the general meaning of the word "decimate", various interpretations of the word "Cretanism" and that some people really should get out more and loosen up a little.


Awe inspiring, and completely demonstrated in your comment. I salute you (or should that be "I sulate you")?

Oh yes, I also learned that most people agree about "nuculuear"!

BOFH: The Silence of the Servers

Dead Vulture

Absolute genius

That was quite the scariest BOFH I've read ... and the "happy" ending was great! Nice one Simon.

Three Little Pigs book deemed offensive to Muslims


Well I did provide "feedback" to Becta

saying that I found their attitude to a story that's been told to Britons over the centuries "culturally offensive".

Unsurprisingly the response I got was the canned one that both the Beeb and El Reg seem to have received which simply confirms my view that a. it's run by a bunch of morons and b. they don't care what anyone else thinks, they have their view and you will all subscribe to it (weirdly typing that conjures up an image of a Becta press officer taking on the form and mannerisms of Peter Sellers in Dr Strangelove).

It's a good book... you should read it :)

Perhaps they should too!

Rio drug traffickers take exception to Santa's chopper

Dead Vulture

Incomplete quote...

The president of the local residents' association described the children as "very sad as they had expected Santa to arrive by helicopter" ... " and had to put away the SAMs they'd borrowed from their elder brothers for the occasion".

Running queries on the HMRC database fiasco


select count(idiot) from HMRC

I'd suggest that the reason that NAO was being sent the data in this format was that it was a format that HMRC already had and was already using internally in some integration or other. Given that the extract contained *all* the data, I'd suspect that this was a copy of the feed to an HMRC data warehouse.

The most likely formats therefore might be an XML file, a CSV file (either of which really isn't going to trouble a black-hat much to figure out the format, given they've probably saved it with a file extension of .xml or .csv) or a database extract. You have to remember the thinking of the numpties might be, "well here's the data, no we don't know how to get it onto your machine, but it is on the disk; oh you'll incur an expense getting it? Sorry, not our problem". But as you say, let's notr discuss it... pointless anyway seeing as I'm sure we can all guess where the "password" protection comes in.

And the Id cards argument from Darling is just hilarious, in a very black way... yes, it would have made it less likely that the NAO would have had to request the data in the first place (bearing in mind that they didn't actually request the data at all) but on the flip side once the idiot with unrestricted access to the dataset sent the whole caboodle through an insecure channel we'd be in an even worse position than we are now. And it doesn't matter how many technical safeguards you try to put into your system, at some level there will be some idiot with too much access who doesn't understand why what they are about to do should qualify them for a red hot poker up the jacksie.

I'm still trying to figure out who are the bigger set of morons here, the HMRC clowns or the policitcal muppets, it's a difficult choice.

BOFH: Workplace accidents = 0

Dead Vulture


...but not in the IT department... unless you were the boss, a consultant, an external technician (unless equally evil), a salesman (unless in the pub) or anyone except the heroes.

Hmm, see your point!

Paris Hilton exits missionary position to save Universe


Hilton abandons children for shopping trip

subtitle: Tokyo wannabes celebrate as Rwandan woes deepen.

Jailed terror student 'hid' files in the wrong Windows folder


@John A. Blackley

Go back to reading the Daily Mail in your more lucid moments between inciting religious hatred and excusing excessively heavy handed policing... I suppose you're lamenting the fact that said plods didn't employ the "De Menezes" maneouvere and just shoot Mr Siddique in the head.

If you arrested everyone in Glasgow who repeatedly expressed a desire to cause violence against others then I think it would be a very quiet city; certainly the terraces at Ibrox and Celtic Park would have tumbleweeds blowing across them. How is this type of emotion substantively different from Mr Siddique's? Except of course that he's a Muslim so immediately guilty in your eyes.

The fact that people on here keep trying to assert, and that you seem completely blind to, is that Mr Siddique has been convicted for thoughts, not deeds; the trial itself really didn't show any real evidence that he was planning to enact any of his assertions any time soon. On that basis, and taking the comparison of sentences for other crimes committed in this country, he was harshly treated.

Just to curtail your racial profiling I'm not a muslim, I'm Scots, white, middle class and employed in the IT industry, I don't read the Guardian and typically have a very unforgivng stance on crime; in this particular case however I feel that the facts presented by the procurator fiscal and the sentence handed down by the judge have more to do with fear than anything else.


Justice my arse

This man has been sent to jail for being an idiot... which is unfortunate, I really don't think that juastice has been served though.

If you've followed the trial, most of his behaviours seem to have been concerned with getting attention; maybe very misplaced behaviours and perhaps he needed a quiet slap round the head, but this length of sentence seems a little excessive.

I guess a subtitle for the trial could have been "Teen sent to jail for 8 years for over-zealous teenage rebellion", or even "Teen jailed for being stupid", given how many other teens could have the same subtitles it's disappointing.

BOFH: Skip diplomacy


Sheer genius

Must've been one hell of a big skip though!

Reg Developer goes West


SF in India shock

"Register Developer will now combine its proximity to the people and events that matter in app dev"

So will that be Banglore, Pune or Mumbai then? Certainly isn't california any more.

Now that you've alienated all your UK readership and portrayed yourself as somewhat blinkered (arrogant tosspot was my first thought but I'm prepared to allow you more rope to hang yourself properly) how long's it going to be before Martin and David feel sidelined and go off and set up something else?


So, what's the first rule of Reg Club?


Shocked and appalled

I can't believe that this story has no IT angle... it's about rules and processes, where is the hardware? where's the software? Aaah...MY EYES!

Adopt this dog or we'll kill it



We could save all the f*^£$%g money we spend on chavs and save the dogs... now that really would be a caring society :)