* Posts by Chris Hawkins

108 publicly visible posts • joined 9 Oct 2007


Japan's mission to mine Mars' moon is cleared – now they've filled out the right paperwork on alien world contamination

Chris Hawkins

Phobos Phobias

Hmm! Seems no one remembers last (& only) time in 1989 when Soviet Phobos II probe disappeared in strange circumstances.

Millions of moaners vindicated: Man flu is 'a thing', says researcher, and big TVs are cure

Chris Hawkins

A man named Sue????

Uber borgs with Yandex's ride-sharing biz in Russosphere

Chris Hawkins

Сопротивление бесполезно! I for one welcome our Russo-Californian Uberlords!

Decapitating Rockall: How a 1970s Navy expedition blasted the top off the Atlantic islet

Chris Hawkins

Not Rockall

You rotten swine! You beated me to it!

Indeed, a series of of photos of Napoleon's Piano were left there after the 1st Great attempt to "deaded" Rockall by Messr's Secombe & BlueBottle in 1958.

Listen Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8I6wbUticic&feature=youtu.be&t=23m45s

EU cybersecurity directive will reach Britain, come what May

Chris Hawkins

Come what May?


Well May has come! ;)

ISS pump-up space podule refuses to engorge

Chris Hawkins

Sounds like a load of of hot air to me!

ZX Printer's American cousin still in use, 34 years after purchase

Chris Hawkins

Re: Good tip

We can get thermal fax paper here still in Portugal from various office supppliers.

That having been said even the staff in the local Telecom Operators are to young to know what a fax is! ;)

I think my wife now uses it twice a year to communicate with an old German friend in Munich who refuses to upgrade to the Interwebs!

BT hauled into Old Bailey after engineer's 7-metre fall broke both his ankles

Chris Hawkins

Not Funny


I have some sympathy with the guy, having dislocated my foot 3 years ago after a ladder collapsed under me and I fell 3 metres while trying to install a network cable.

Bl**dy painful!

It was my own stupid fault. I know all the safety regs but there was an urgent job needed doing and no one else around.

The client at least came to see me the next day in hospital, clutching an envelope!

My comment "Is that the invoice for the hole I made in your patio"? ;)

I'm self-employed so it was a bit costly for a few months!

Server retired after 18 years and ten months – beat that, readers!

Chris Hawkins

As I wrote in 1995, a computer is for life not just xmas!!!! Well done that machine!!

Web Summit looks at new homes ... this time with sun and decent Wi-Fi

Chris Hawkins

My Vote - Lisbon

Lisbon would be an excellent venue not only because of the climate.

Portugal and Lisbon has a vibrant IT start-up scene and MEO,NOS and Vodafone offer excellent quality ISP fibre-optic services.

Lisbon Airport also has direct links to many more European, North American,South American hubs than Dublin with Turkish, Emirates and Qatar offering daily links to the Middle/Far East.

The Lazarus Effect: Saved by Linux and Cash Converters

Chris Hawkins

Portugal / Debian

Great Article!

I've been living in Portugal for many years.

There is plenty of second hand kit available, (see for example: http://olx.pt/ ) but I prefer to buy new as Portuguese Govt. legislation requires purveyors of hardware, white goods and many other items to offer a minimum two year guarantee.

Worten.pt is part of the large national SONAE group and, in fact, took over the old Dixon's operations in Spain a couple of years back. Economies of scale are now such that prices are very competitive on a EU basis. However, there are a good number of excellent IT retailers nationwide most with their own online shops.

One thing I like about Portugal is that 48hr Cash on Delivery is available here via the Post Offfice and offereed by most on-line retailers. This avoids having to use credit/debit cards and reduces fraud risks.

I also only use Debian on my three laptops(jessie) and my VPS(wheezy).and have been doing so for 10 years. I love rehabilitating "ex laptops" that people intend to dispose of with Linux.

I am writing is on an ex-Dixons UK, Advent Eclipse E300 (Intel Celeron SU2300 (1.20GHz)) which a local Expat was flogging 12 months ago. All the advice on the web was that it couldn't be upgraded. I managed to use a credit card to slide the case open, installed 4GB (supplied by http://chipsite.pt) instead of 2GB RAM, fitted a 120GB Kingston SSD ( http://chip7.aeiou.pt/ ) and did a fresh Debian 8 Jessie install. The UK keyboard remains, but I have a portuguese usb keyboard plugged and a language keyboard changer installed on the lower dock to allow use of both languages.

The machine boots in 20 seconds. It is lighweight,(no dvd), and ideal for travel. All for under 180€!

With my Portuguese smartphone 3G package providing hotspot access and the excellent national mobile coverage ( +-95% of the geographic area), I essentially have reasonably good quality internet access 24/7.

'Hi, I'm from Microsoft and I am GOING TO KILL YOU'

Chris Hawkins

They hit here in Portugal last week!

Called me and I told "her" where to go!

Next day, they called a local retired German client of mine, who doesn't speak that good English, and spent 20 minutes on the phone being instructed on how to download teamviewer and activate it BEFORE teling the spammer that the machine was a MacBook Air!!!!! ;)))))

Still gave it a once over though.

Windows XP's market share grows AGAIN!

Chris Hawkins

Windows XP - The Living Dead

Title for Redmond's entry into the movie market with its 2015 Blockbuster Zombie film!!1

Tulsa woman bludgeons man mercilessly with laptop

Chris Hawkins

Big cat also involved?

"...domestic assault and battery"....Nicd or Lion?

Seems to me the lady should also be charged for assault on the poor bl__dy laptop!!

'People ACTUALLY CONFUSE Facebook and the internet in some places'

Chris Hawkins

Re: 358 people

Actually, you mean "People of a trans-pond variety that speak English that think Portugal" is a person of the feminine persuasion passing "a window on "the left hand side of" a ship! ;))

"Left-hand down a little bit, Chiefy!!!

A luta continua!!

SO. Which IS more important to humanity: Facebook, or Portugal?

Chris Hawkins

Ruffled Feathers

"...has ruffled the feathers of some sensitive Portuguese folk....."

Problem is I'm not Portuguese, but I am a EuroBrit (Not EWEKIP) living here and have known the country for decades. Its a much richer environment than Zuckerworld....

I am sensitive about this issue, but my feathers are more of the TUX variety owing to living 90% of the time in a rarified Pengunitis-infected environment. XFSEE!!

Facebook is MORE IMPORTANT to humanity than PORTUGAL

Chris Hawkins

Re: Self Importance?

"...Sorry, Vasco who?..."

The guy, who over 500 years ago, started Europe and the World on the first steps to Globalisation.

Mine's also Benfica, but with a bottle of Pegões, a plate of Bacalhau com Natas, and a Beirão to finish the evening off!

Simian selfie stupidity: Macaque snap sparks Wikipedia copyright row

Chris Hawkins

Hold on! What about the legal rights of Simians??

The above discourse got me ruminating on something I read a few years ago.

Now thanks to OOOkgle! and Wikipedia, I was able to find it...


Seems like Mr. Slater should be careful about pursuing any legal action in courts of the Balearic Islands (Spain), Germany or New Zealand where certain rights have legally been accorded to certain simians.

New Zealand is an interesting case in point, especially as the following quote seems allegedly to imply that certain apes are even protected from having to become teachers....!!!!!

"New Zealand granted strong protections to five great ape species in 1999. Their use is now forbidden in research, testing, or teaching. Some argue that New Zealand's protections amount to a form of weak legal rights. [8]"

Given that Germany is in the EU and given the recent EU Court privacy case, I reckon the aforementioned macaque should request removal of all references to him in search engines and the Interwebs unless he gets a cut of Mr. Slater's income from this mugshot!!!

Mexican drink-driver shopped to cops - by his own gobby parakeet

Chris Hawkins

That bird better watch it or he'll be an "ex-papagayo"!

He'll get done by whichever Mexican gang or cartel now believes it owns the rights to the following famous mariachi song.....


"...Está borracho, está borracho", in Spanish, sounds to me suspiciously close to "..La Cucaracha, la Cucaracha...."

<exits>..rapidly through tunnel under the border to safer climes(?)....</exits>

MINING in SPAAAACE! Asteroid-scoopers? Nah - consumers will be the real winners

Chris Hawkins

Extra-Terrestrial Porcine Press Headlines??


Beijing leans on Microsoft to maintain Windows XP support

Chris Hawkins

How the world has changed!

10 years ago, Microsoft might, repeat, might have just listened, and only listened, to the White House if a similiar request had been made.

10 years on, with US power and influence waning on many fronts, Beijing feels it is now a "major world" equal to the US and can "front-down" Microsoft and make demands like these!

I love it!!!

(gave up XP in 2004 after a little trojan incident involving a download from a (had to be!) Chinese server and living happily ever since on Debian!!!!)

NASA-backed fusion engine could cut Mars trip down to 30 days

Chris Hawkins

Hand the project over to SpaceX

NASA should have made the funding conditional on the geeks at the University of Washington working with SpaceX!

This would achieve the following:

1) A much faster development and implemtation time.

2) Elon Musk has said he wants to get to Mars!

This would achieve this objective much more quickly than anticipated and, at the same time, probably please NASA, SpaceX competitors and Anti-Teslans in getting him out the way, especially if the deceleration phase failed and he found himself en route to Titan or Europa!!! (Sorry, Elon! I'm a great fan but the thought does amuse me!)

I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

Chris Hawkins

Re: This is all too familiar.

"....I tell them that if they decide they want to run some form of Unix, then I'm their man."

I suggest that they email an expert I know that goes by the name of TUX! ;)))

Red wine may be ELIXIR OF YOUTH

Chris Hawkins

What about G&T's?

Can we now, please, have some research on the properties of G&T's??

If similiar results ensue, the wife will be eternally grapeful!!!

Bacon sarnies can kill: Official

Chris Hawkins

Re: ...and now I must warn about the the Danger or drinking Water

"....Right, I'm off to find a zebra crossing...."

Did you find it?.....

Chris Hawkins

...and now I must warn about the the Danger or drinking Water

As a follow-up to this announcement, I think only fair to warn and remind Hon. El Reg readers of the dangers of drinking WATER!

Approximately 99.999999999999999999999999% (allowing for statistical error) percent of humans expire owing to old age!

Approximately 99.999999999999999999999999% (allowing for statistical error) percent of humans drink water, in some form, throughout their lives!

Does it require penguin logic not to rationally assume that Pure Old H20 is in someway responsible for their demise??

I rest my case

<Thinks> Right! Off to the kitchen for a bacon sarmy!</thinks>

BRITAIN MUST DECLARE WAR on Cervinaean menace

Chris Hawkins

How about some genetically generated sabre tooth tigers?

Mind-melded rats could herald organic BRAIN-COMPUTERS

Chris Hawkins

Two beings required: Mars 2018

I am totally with those who are affronted by the use of animals in this way. It is like the researchers who wired up a cat a couple of years ago to be able to see through its eyes!

On light thought, seem to remember that rodents were involved in the research leading to "the answer is 42" in Hitchhikers Guide. If they are that bright maybe they or their Borgish descendants should be given the chance, as an apology, to do the Mars Mission in 2018!!

Squillionaire space tourist offers oldsters a holiday to Mars

Chris Hawkins

Another Likely UK Pair

Wallace and Grommit???

They've already done the moon, just need the Wensleydale and a cuppa!!!! ;)))

World+Dog don't care about climate change, never have done

Chris Hawkins


Don't understand where K9s fit into this story????

As far as I know they have never expressed any thoughts on the issue of climate change!


Singaporean men in naked web cam extortion scam

Chris Hawkins

Naked Web Cam?

I've heard about the weirdest fetishes in my time but a "Naked Web Cam"????


Curiosity photographs mysterious metal object on Martian rock

Chris Hawkins

Part of a ""Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator" ?????''

Wait for the "Ka-Boooom"!

Oh, those crazy Frenchies: Facebook faces family photo tax in France

Chris Hawkins

Re: I'm sorry...

Regards Romania, I have to disagree!

Have been there and used such services. (Roads are another story!) Point being there are plenty low cost transport services to choose from.

As regards Germany, I would have agreed with your comments until a few days ago when I came across:




Chris Hawkins

Re: I'm sorry...

This has already happened in the low-cost airline sector.

A couple of years ago, St. Michael of O'Leary closed Paddyair's bases in France because the French Govt. went after Ryanair's staff employment contracts which I understand were drafted under Irish law. Several, until then, very lucrative and useful internal routes were lost, as were local jobs, and of course, nos amis francaises had to revert to travelling on the relatively expensive TGV. (owned by the French Govt.) Unlike, the UK, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Romania where there are excellent networks of intercity bus routes, there are very few or none, within France. Consequently, if you look at a map of low-cost flight/travel routes in France, they are, in the majority, from French airports to external destinations. Compared with the rest of Europe, France, internally, is like a big black hole.

That is what is going to happen with the web in France if they carry on with this proposal. I have no problems about Governments' seeking reasonable tax revenues, but the Elysee has really got to understand that the time has come to open up the French digital (and general) economy, or more and more potential investors will avoid the country like the plague and existing ones will close down operations.

L'affaire Depardieu has already proved that!

'Doomsday' asteroid Apophis more massive than first thought

Chris Hawkins

Apopis - Send SG1

No Need to panic!

This scenario has already been envisaged.


Toy train company bids for West Coast Mainline

Chris Hawkins

Re: I ride that particular section of railway.

Sir, I think your comment that is demeaning to the management capacity of a zoo full of drunken monkeys!

Japanese cops cuff cat carrying remote control virus

Chris Hawkins

Is this the precursor for a new type of "cat flu"??

What bothers me with this report is that there is a disturbing world-wide trend beginning to emerge of felines being involved in criminal activity where tech is involved!

A few days ago we had the case of the "duck-taped" moggie trying to get into a Brazilian jail.


Now This!!

There has been an ongoing discussion on Quora.com about whether or not Felis catus are controlled by Satan!


Me wonders if we are beginning to see a new disturbing trend for 2013?

<thinks> Cats hunt birds!</thinks>

<thinks>Tux is a penguin!</thinks>

<thinks>Penguins are birds!</thinks>

<thinks>Are cats dangerous to my linux installations????</thinks>

<thinks>Here kitty, kitty,kitty........ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_zpdyBz3VM</thinks>

Now where's my cyber-rotty when I need him! ;))))))))

NASA: 'Those life-on-Mars rumors? Chill, dudes and dudettes'

Chris Hawkins

Shades of Roswell 1947


First the indication of something big and then the official denial!

Seems to be that MIB and Majestic have been busy!

And all because Curiosity has found wifi signals on Mars and determined that 90% of client and server systems use Linux!

Have to protect MS and Apple,, you know!

Sinofsky OFFSKI: Is Windows 9 now codenamed 'Defenestrate'?

Chris Hawkins

Re: Mr. 2007 Office Ribbon Only/No Alternative? Gone?


The surname is not Picard, perchance?

Scene: "In orbit around Windownian 9...., part of the Microsoftian System".

"Mr Worf, photon torpedos, please.... "

"Photon Torpedos ready,Captain.."

"Make it so!!!"

(With apologies to all Thespians, Klingons and Vulcans who may be offended!)

Chris Hawkins

Totally Paranoid Conspiracy Theory

Given the strange Roswell type "co-incidental" timing and the current FBI/MET/BBC/North Wales going-ons, could Sinofsky's departure be yet another facet of the current trans-pond BBC/Newsnight/Entwhistle/Petraeus affair?

I'm out of here...(check's Mayan 2012 Calendar....how soon is December 21st????)

Stob on Quatermass: Was this British TV's finest sci-fi hour?

Chris Hawkins

Re: Quartermass - Goon Show Style

It is so good to see so many IT-type fans of a show that was broadcast in the '50's!

My knees nearly fell of with pleasure at the responses!

It confirms what I have often thought....... to be a successful happy IT-type person, particularly of the *nix variety, a regular dose of the Goons is absolutely necessary!

Right, off round the back for the ol' Brandy!!!!

Chris Hawkins

Quartermass - Goon Show Style

Peter Sellars, Spike Milligna and Sir Neddy (Harry) Seagoon beat the Doctor Who restoration team to it with a 1959 Goon Show dedication..... "Quatermass O.B.E"

Script 'ere: http://www.thegoonshow.net/scripts_show.asp?title=s09e14_quatermass_obe

IMHO it was one of the best Goon Show's ever, especially in its opening prescient 1984 vision of the traffic troubles that continue to bedevil most western societies, 50 years on...

<quote>"Today at approximately this afternoon, a discovery was made on the site of the Notting Hill Gate site of the government’s new dig-up-the-roads-plan-for-congesting-traffic scheme. Workmen in the absence of a strike settled for work as an alternative."</end quote>

The work done by the BBC Sound Team to emulate the original Quartermass sound track was superb.

If you can find it on the Web, give it a listen....it's brilliant!

Ying Tong Iddle I Po!

British sheep falling behind Continental sheep in broadbaaaand race

Chris Hawkins

Call for Shaun!

Sounds like this is a job for Shaun and the flock!

When Aaaaaaardman initially started production, they got German regional broadcaster WDR to support a bid to the EU MEDIA Plus Program! Look at the success!

Ovines are not stewepid! They know very well how to "pull the wool"!

Plucky orangutan rescued from encroaching biofuel plantations

Chris Hawkins

Re: "..biodiesel for use in vehicles and aviation..."

Question: Couldn't Orang-Utan emissions be utilised for the production of bio-fuels thus killing two birds with one stone??


Curiosity photographs evidence of ancient streams on Mars

Chris Hawkins

Re: Looking for the wrong things

Like a soft custard pie?

Portugal’s prosecutor punts P2P case

Chris Hawkins

Re: Oh, that's it.

Actually, I live and work in Portugal e já aprendi falar e escrever Português! (I have already learnt to speak and write Portuguese)!!! ;)))

Lots wrong here but lots right!

High level of application of latest technologies here. Nationwide 4G deployment is close.

Some great IT start-ups based around Coimbra and Braga Universities.

Great Food and wine as well to boot.

No stigma using Linux as an OS.....people just look in awe at you!

I also reckon that, together with Ireland, the country may be the first out of the current Euro crisis.

Canonical bungs kill switch onto Ubuntu's Amazon 'adware'

Chris Hawkins

Re: Canonical should have a care....

As did I!

Running Debian on my new vps as well. Keeping well away from Ubuntu!

Opportunity finds new patch of 'berries' on Mars

Chris Hawkins

Re: Get your Martian Blueberry Jam right here!!!!


Space Jam: stripped bolt bugs spacewalkers

Chris Hawkins

Re: Some nut out there...

"at our one & only nuclear power plant was damaged beyond repair because someone had neglected to apply a spanner properly......"

Homer Simpson????????

Mr Burns is not going to be happy!

Curiosity's laser turns Mars rocks to 'glowing plasma'

Chris Hawkins

Re: Kaboom!

Or rather just wait till the Martian Equivalent of Curiosity, with the illudium Q-36 explosive space modulator attached, comes rolling over the hills.......