* Posts by Richard

53 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Mar 2008


Developers take Mac, Linux-friendly Chrome for a spin


Quote of the day

""Unless of course you ... take great pleasure in incomplete, unpredictable, and potentially crashing software."

Well, millions of average users run Windows Vista on a daily basis.....

-- Richard

Home Office to keep innocent DNA samples

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EU law

fsck me... the one time in which the UK refuses to recognise EU law (as it should) is the one time the EU has a good point.

Is our dictatorship government just a cunch of bunts or what?

-- Richard

Atomsmasher boffins probe duff whisky deluge

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Reminds me of...

.... a certain episode of Hustle.

Ready or not, IPv6 is coming


Clues are on sale this month. Buy now.

There's a lot of rubbish argument going on in the comments regarding IPv6. Lets discuss some of them:

1) IP addresses are too long.

So was the digit count in the year before 2000. We used '99' instead. We all remember the joy of Y2K (even though in the end nothing happened). The reason the IP address is so mind-numbingly long is so that in another 10 years time you don't all complain about the lack of IP addresses and we have to start down another road to IPv47 or something.

There is more than just IP count thats responsible for the 128 bits length too. If you actually bothered investigating IPv6 (oh wait.. that requires you have sense doesn't it...) you'd see that the bits are logically divided to provide adequate addressing in logical units.

For example, it is accepted that no network segment should be smaller than a /64. This gives you 2^64 IP addresses for your company network, and allows stateless autoconfiguration by munging your MAC address into an IP address. This is good design. It means IPv6 autoconfiguration is easy.

2) Route profileration contaminates the internet.

Again, you haven't been reading. When PROPERLY CONFIGURED these kind of packets should only exist on local internal networks. Backbones, etc. should be statically configured, as you'd expect from a professional level.

3) "We had problems and had to disable IPv6".

No, you had misconfigured software. PHP (even on Windows) handles IPv6 just fine, its more likely your system just wasn't configured correctly. True, I can't speak for ASP. If you have problems because of IPv6, its because of software configuration.

4) Nobody's using it.

Actually, Akamai (one of the internet's biggest content distribution networks) recently registered an IPv6 BGP table entry. Clearly they're taking IPv6 seriously.

5) Why bother? There's plenty of IPv4 space.

No, there isn't. It runs out next year by most estimates.

6) Why don't we just reclaim unused space?

Firstly, how do you plan to do this? Legal enforcement? You'll be in courts for years and not see a single IP come back. And why should organisations give them back? They paid good money for them, they have a right to keep them in "storage" until needed. You have no right to say to them "Look, you're not using and we've run out. We can't be bothered to install the next generation IP, so we're nicking you address."

7) IPv6 sucks. <insert reasons here>

I can't refute any claim of any particular feature or the protocol on a whole "sucking". However, I would ask a question. Where's your paper on an alternative protocol? Oh wait, you haven't got one. So shut up. Until you can suggest a better idea that the world will go for, you can't talk about anything.

8) There is no chicken and egg situation; IPv6 is just not wanted.

Wrong again. IPv6 hardware requires investment. Investment requires being able to see a return. Where's the return if no ISP customers use IPv6 ?

Where's the return if router manufacturers sell to customers who's ISP doesn't use IPv6 ?

One chicken and egg scenario. Fortunately, this has been mitigated a little lately by tunnel brokers that provide IPv6 connectivity over an IPv4 link. This helps get it into use, but not everyone can have an IPv4 address as an endpoint.

By the way, I use both IPv4 and v6 at home and have NO TROUBLE WHATSOEVER. Maybe thats because I know what I'm doing, but for me it just works. Firefox looks up host details for a website. Sees an IPv6 address. Sees I have a public IPv6 address. It makes the connection. No AAAA record? It uses IPv4 instead. Most IPv6-enabled applications work in the same way. Again, if you're having trouble ITS NOT IPV6S FAULT!

Oh, and something else that other people might want to know, if you get weird DNS issues or timeouts when you enable IPv6, thats because your router is programmed by monkeys. This is a well known issue where some routers mishandle the AAAA records for DNS and return "nonexistent domain" instead of passing the records on properly. The solution? Get a proper router or run your own DNS server. Its not hard. You can get simple free caching DNS servers for Windows that will sort this one out.

So, can we stop spreading FUD, myths and Unbelievable Bullshit(tm) about IPv6 ? You'll only slow down the take up of an otherwise perfectly acceptable protocol. And when we do run out of addresses, it'll be all of you going "oh shit! we should have done something about this!" as find bits of the internet are accessible to your IPv4 only connection.

-- Richard

Police ad urges: 'Trust no one'

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Know your rights

Straight from the (corrupt) horses mouth:


Note the bit on not having to surrender personal details. This is a point almost ALL officers fail to mention. Also, most stop-and-searches are carried out "on the record" meaning although they are not supposed to, very often officers record the details for holding on file.

If you are stop-and-search'ed, inform the officer of your rights and assert that you're not up for any unlawful conduct on their part.

-- Richard

Polish Spitfire shoots down BNP


While we're on the subject of facts...

@Shakje (and others):

You have completely missed the point that the BNP is trying to get across. Nowhere have they objected to the Polish people or any other people for that matter. The objection here is the economic circumstance thats being perpetuated.

A common (and naturally completely wrong) attitude is "if they didn't do it, then nobody would" or "well the British people are too lazy to do it". This is so wrong is unbelievable, and demonstrates a disgusting failure to understand the British way of life.

We are NOT a third world country. We do NOT in this country decide that "3 rice bowls a day" (used metaphorically here) is adequate. The reason that most people are not doing the "dregs" jobs is not through laziness (although granted some people are just lazy) but because people simply can not subsist in this country on the wage offered.

I challenge anyone here to live in their own house with running water, electricity, telephone and a TV licence, paying council tax, rent and any vehicle costs (not to mention any loans) all from the wage offered to someone behind the counter of Macdonalds.It can't be done. It simply can't.

The tedious attitude here is "so find a cheaper solution, like house sharing, etc.". This is exactly what the Poles do. They house share. To extreme levels. They have the mindset to accept live in this appalling (sorry but that kind of cramming is appalling to me) state and thus a poor wage is acceptable. This is why Poles, Eastern Europeans, etc. are undercutting our jobs, because we simply do not have the ability to do the same jobs at OUR quality of life. As I said at the start, we are NOT a third world country.

Now the BNP is proposing that this practice stops. So that Britain is no longer an annex of Poland by virtue of all the low-age jobs being done by Poles while Brits who want to live in conditions where they have room to breathe sit on the unemployment list waiting for jobs that are harder to come by.

May I suggest anyone who thinks the BNP are racist do at least do some research first. I personally won't be voting for them on the grounds of their mixed-race and same-sex marriage policies, but I certainly support the idea of preventing Britain from becoming an annex of Eastern Europe.

With all this in mind, can the next article on the BNP please at least START from a neutral point of view, rather than presuming to be a piece on the Nazi party?

-- Richard

Samsung launches not-2TB drive


So how big is it really?

Once you got past the marketing lies and BS, how much capacity are you actually getting?

Lets assume they've gone with the lie that 1TB = 1 trillion bytes, that means the actual capacity of this drive is:

*drum roll*

1.3 TB. The amount you've been conned out of is:

139.01 GB

You know, a few years ago, we called 139GB a hard drive's worth.

Anyone feeling conned yet?

-- Richard

UK kiddies cop a righteous tasering



So how come this story doesn't get the judicious use of the word "Orwellian" like El Reg is prone to do regarding any story concerning Google Eyeball Substitute^H^H^H^H^H^Street View ?

I contact one of the authors with a very long message requesting clarification on this, but no reply yet. Seems The Register is only interested in misusing words rather than reporting the truth......

-- Richard

NASA CO2 scan satellite launch fails

Black Helicopters


Surely someone's thinking government sabotage?

For what its worth, I don't think it was. Just a case of "ah sh*t... something went wrong". But if it turned out it was an attempt to prevent the public from knowing the truth, I wouldn't be surprised in the least.

-- Richard

Nudie subterranean rat protein could arrest human ageing


New paper....

You know this is getting a little silly.

So I'm thinking of releasing a paper entitled:

"Incredibly long and interminably boringly titled papers and why we should work towards finding a way of describing the content of an otherwise tedious paper in a way that can not only be pronounced without taking a day off work to do so but also doesn't require you to draw breath a second time halfway through to avoid suffocation - in human beings."

Can't we just have "Naked Mole Rats and Human Longevitiy" ?!

-- Richard

Spy boss damns government's culture of fear


Not any time soon

You can forget seeing laws repealed any time soon.

Acts of terrorism are convenience for enacting laws that governments wanted anyway. Forget your lib/lab/con argument over who's going to do what, they all follow the agenda that us livestock should be restricted in what we do to maintain the order.

You'll find any european government is in the habit of using 1984 as a manual.

Stella may be right, but it won't make any difference. Why repeal laws that keep you from speaking out against the government?

-- Richard

ICO tears school CCTV a new peephole

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If you can't do the time....

"My daughter no longer wants to go to the school: the cameras have made her a bit panicky."

What, so the kid is concerned she might be caught being a right little arsehole? Oh no. The horror.

I agree that sticking a camera everywhere can be excessive, but getting all pissy because a kid has been caught being a shit to another kid is going a bit far. Thats what the CCTV cameras are there fore. Safety and ensuring you don't get away with being the little bastards kids invariably are when teachers aren't watching.

I say "lesson learned".

-- Richard

Birmingham drops the possessive apostrophe


Poor coding standards

“It would be tragic if the ambulance couldn’t find your street if you forgot to use the possessive apostrophe.”

A few years ago I did a pass-the-time project... a tube route planner. It was slow, didn't have the best logic and was written in TCL, but it WAS able to handle punctuation in the station names.

If emergency services software writers can't implement the following code, then we're all in a lot of trouble:

if (strip_punctuation(input_street) == strip_punctuation(database_street)) then matched=true; display_results();

-- RIchard

Western Digital Caviar Green 2TB hard drive


Lying HD manufacturers

I do wish hard drive manufacturers would stop lying about the size of their drives.

We all know that all major OSes (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux (listed in no particular order)) read sizes correctly, thus:

1K = 1024 bytes.

1M = 1024K

1G = 1024M

1T = 1024G

Thus a drive of 2,000,000,000,000 is not 2TB as Western Digital would claim, but is in fact 1.81TB as the article correctly stated. Though I do like the wording "2TB, 1.81TB when formatted" - as if formatting it magically changes the definition of a terabyte.

We have laws in this country about fraud, deception, mis-selling a product, etc. How come drive manufacturers are still allowed to blatently lie about how much space you're getting, just because the average computer user doesn't know that capacities are measured in binary quantities not decimal ?

I hope one day this gets corrected and the drive manufacturers get the slap in the face they deserve. As capacities get bigger and bigger, the discrepancy between what they say you're getting and what you're really getting gets more and more. In this case, you're being cheated out of a whopping 0.19TB (194.56 GB, or 199,229 MB). Thats an entire hard drive's worth, even by todays standards.

Imagine if memory modules were sold using this system?

"The module is 2147 MB in size (2GB when installed in system)". I doubt it would wash.

-- Richard

Stop'n'search gets touchy-feely


Reading a 9 on the bs-o-meter, sir...

"Explain to the person being stopped that they are being stopped as part of the operation to reduce the risk of terrorism in London. Reassure the individual that the stop is a routine part of counter-terrorist policing and it is a preventative power proven to help make London safer from a terrorist attack."

Then explain to the person being stopped that the Section 44 stop and search goes on their record for the rest of their life and may affect any present or future employment when their records are search for criminal activity and they are found to have been "investigated" as a potential terrorist subject.


-- Richard

National Safety Council seeks total* cell-phone driving ban


Stupidest idea ever

There's a reason why this is daft. Mobile phones while driving? Yes, dangerous. Hands-free? Uh no.

Answering a hands-free call requires pushing a button on the side of your head. Then you just talk.

Driving meanwhile requires operating up to 4 controls at once (Clutch, Brake, Steering Wheel, Gear Stick).

During a call? Talking. So lets extend this idea using simple logic:

You are now banned from making conversation. You must get in the car and sit in silence until you reach your destination. Oh wait. You can't. Use of any control is banned. Therefore driving is banned.

Vehicles are now obsolete. We must all walk.

Are we seeing the daft yet?

-- Richard

EU threatens vendors with smartphone tax


Tax law is interesting

Interesting thing tax law.

The government will of course bow to the EU. And break the law in doing so.

See, under UK law (that EVERYONE IS SUBJECT TO, including the government) you can't do this. In fact, there are many taxes that are collected illegally in this country.

The law states that you may only collect enough taxes to govern the country, I.e. you charge even the populace for the costs you incur. Anything else is stealing. You can avoid the stealing charge if you collect taxes in advance then don't use them and as such pay them back.

But as I said, the UK government is not averse to breaking the law (you may remember that signing the lisbon treaty was an act of treason which is still illegal in this country) so we'll see this tax enacted without protest. Certainly any protest from the populace they represent will go ignored.

-- Richard

Royal Navy completes Windows for Submarines™ rollout



StopMissileDestroyingEarth.exe has encountered an invalid page fault and will be shut down.

If you were working on keeping the missiles locked down and not launched then your hope has been lost.

Please save your submarine to your planet in a safe location to continue living.

Do you wish to send Microsoft an error report? [YES] [NO]

Mines the one with the blue screen of death screenshot on it.

-- Richard

ADSL - the VoIP killer


Ministry of the Bleeding Obvious

A VoIP company has only just NOW discovered that VoIP over ADSL is crap?

I was saying this a few years back, when everyone was evangalising VoIP saying how wonderful it was, and getting SIP accounts for over-the-internet calls.

When I said "Except that ADSL is as reliable as a plumber's estimate, and the average connection won't be able to handle more than around 5 simultaneous calls..." I was rubished as an unbeliever... a sinner against the great lord VoIP.

This is why MCSEs suck... experience outweighs what it says should happen in the manual.

-- Richard

Why port your Firefox add-on to Internet Explorer?


Wrong on so many levels

The big one first:

"No-one uses C++ anymore" -- Except Microsoft, to uh, write Windows in. Linux (you know that pesky platform that more people are using for a web server than IIS? Remember.. in front of every Exchange server is a linux box running sendmail to deal with Exchange's inadequacies) is compiled in C! Many X apps in Linux are written in C++ too. We'll chalk this one down to "arse? mouth? same thing when you're talking aren't they?".

The whole idea of porting extensions to IE. The problem is, IE is about as friendly to modifications as the Lisbon Treaty. Almost every extension for IE I've seen has involved some sort of hackish approach to get IE to do what they want. If MS wants extension compatibility, why don't they just develop a compatibility layout that allows existiing Firefox extensions to work?

Lastly lets compare models when it comes to operating security:

Firefox: We will (flaws excepted) not allow an extension to dick about with your system. It is sandboxed.

IE: We will allow an extension to do as it pleases, but just pop up a wee dialog first to say "you want this, right?".

I'll have what they're smoking.

-- Richard

MPs demand investigation into unlawful police action

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Gaff or pattern?

"Critics of the police are asking whether this was simple oversight, or part of a broader pattern of police setting out to ignore restraints placed by parliament on their behaviour."

Its a pattern. The Police are getting a bit of a record for making the law up as they go along. Mainly at the instruction of government.

The biggest problem for us ordinary folk is bailiffs. They have a tendency to produce fake court orders and demand money or property compensation (with added admin charge). When the Police are called to give them some polite suggestions on where they can put it, the Police tend to take the bailiffs side, refusing to check on the legitimacy of the court order, and threaten to arrest the victim if they don't comply.

-- Richard

Logitech Digital Video Security System



@Simon Dax: Couldn't agree more...

@Mark_T: GeoVision? Pfft. Clearly you want to pay to upgrade next week then. And pay again to upgrade four weeks later. And pay again after that.. then there's the total lack of compatibility with any other products... avoid.

May I recommend i-Catcher Console? (http://www.icode.co.uk/icatcher/products/console.html) Very cheap and compatible with many manufacturers. They even have a CCTV shop to buy components and systems from.

-- Richard

Scots vote out ID cards


Nothing to do with security

ID cards are not for security. Its so that you can be identified when you may have committed a crime of the new world order (e.g. sniffing in a public place).

Toning it down a bit in more realistic language, this whole ID card business is not the government's idea - this is a fresh bullshit from the EU, that wonderful unelected organisation.

But its still nothing to do with security. They just want to be able to identify anyone anywhere at any time.

Pass the copy of 1984, please.

-- Richard

BNP leaked list claims first victims

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Fascist anti-fascists

"Merseyside Police said: "We are very clear - membership of the British National Party is totally incompatible with the duties and values of the police service and Merseyside Police. We will not accept a police officer or police staff being a member of BNP."

Its amazing how the desire to protect can breed hypocrisy and fascism. This is a typical reaction of everybody who has not actually read up on the BNP. Now don't get me wrong here, I'm not a member, and I don't plan to vote for them, but I have read enough to understand that the majority held view is presently unfounded.

It may have been valid several years ago, but unless the BNP are up to something sinister (and lets be honest, it would be very hypocratic to suggest they are without any evidence) there is nothing to suggest that a BNP member should be deprived of the priveleges the rest of us enjoy.

The statement above from the Police is nothing but pure fascism and discrimination, and proves that the Police are just one part of a corrupt system that doesn't want to see all views represented.

Aside from which, I was kinda under the impression that most companies believe that what a person gets up to in there own time is none of the company's concern. Are the police above this status quo?

-- Richard

Hitler had one ball: Official


Another joke

... and the only think that sprang to my mind was this joke:

Q. What do you call a Russian with only one testicle?

A. Hoojanikkabolokov.

Hitler, apparently.


Police vet live music, DJs for 'terror risk'

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I thought it was november

'"Live music is now a threat to the prevention of terrorism", he concluded.'

I coulda sworn it was november, not april...

You gotta be kidding me right?

Words fail me.

-- Richard

Sun Java piggybacks Microsoft searchbar, divorces Google

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Invalid License

Has anyone else noticed the license agreement for the Yahoo toolbar is skipped? It specifically says "By clicking 'I Agree' below..." but do you see such a button?

License-free yahoo toolbar anyone?

-- Richard

Study clears cannabis of schizophrenia rap


Worse than Canabis...

There's a worse drug than canabis out there. This worse drug:

1) Is used by millions across the country, and more worldwide.

2) Is easily available

3) Is known to cause addiction in many people very easily.

4) Is known to cause violent episodes and other regrettable actions

5) Is sold over the counter in establishments that specialise in it

6) Is completely legal

I am of course referring to alcohol. Compare with that NASTY EVIL SUBSTANCE (</sarcasm>) Canabis:

1) You can not become psychotropically addicted to canabis (oo thats a big word isnt it? It means you can not become addicted in such a way as to have a dependency - you might become addicted because you really enjoy it, like a chocoholic, but not because you need it, like an alcoholic).

2) Does not cause violent episodes. Quite the opposite. Its calmly and relaxing effects are legendary. While I wouldn't suggest driving afterwards, you're not going to out and smash someones face in while stoned (well actually you might, but thats because you're a fucked up bastard with no respect for life, not because you've been toking).

3) Is illegal. Why. Remind me again?

Oh yeh. The risks. Let me tell you something about canabis. Very often its sold in a form coloquially known as "dirt bar", because its cheaper. Dirt bar is basically what you get when you scoop up all the bits of canabis that have fallen on the floor/desk/whatever, and heat it a little to make it gel into a bar. Its got floor polish, bits of wood, cleaning agents, you name it in there. Are you surprised this shit causes problems?

Now compare with canabis "proper" - coloquially known as "green" or "bud". This is the raw plant and is far far far far far safer, because it hasn't been scraped off a french dresser. Its the proper stuff and is unlikely to cause any unpleasant side effects.


-- Richard

Boffins: global warming kills lemmings, not suicide


Research check!

This has already been covered, but just bolster the argument with my humble 2p (or if we've finally been subsumed by the EU, 2c)...

What has given rise to the belief (and subsequent computer game profits) that lemmings commit suicide was a Disney film that made them do so.

Someone told Disney that lemmings like to throw themselves off cliffs, so Disney thought "oo.. this would make a great film". And after the budget had been secured and locations visited they found out that actually, no they don't.

So they had two choices:

1) Go home and explain to their bosses that they were prize prats, or.

2) Make it happen.

I think we can all guess which option they went with. Always better to save face at the expense of rodent lives than to admit you made a cock up.

-- Richard

Guy Fawkes stunt arrives early


Use of the term Master

Firstly, well done to the people posting the books for making a point. It is about time politicians learned their place in the UK structure.

While I can see the objection to the term "Master", lets be honest thats what we are in reality. They are elected by us to serve our interests, not their own. When we say "We don't want the Lisbon Treaty" it is their BOUND DUTY to throw it out, instead they tell us some colourful places to put it, and do as they please anyway.

We have one of the most corrupt governments in the world, who's success at being corrupt is measured by the fact that most people still think they live in a fair democracy.

I hope '1984' has given all MPs a stark reminder of what they should be doing, versus what they have been doing for the last 98 years.

-- Richard

Barack Obama will be president


America Saved? World screwed.

Well congratulations to the American public for once again failing to do even any basic research on who they're voting for.

In charge of one of the most powerful countries in the world is now an anti-white, racist, muslim terrorism sympathiser (self confessed).

Enjoy the next four years America - Rest of world too.

Bed made - Sleeping within to commence.

-- Richard

BBC's TV detector vans to remain a state secret


Bullshit-o-meter gives a strong reading, Sir

"After answering part of the request the broadcaster refused to give further details because if it did so it would damage the public's perception of the effectiveness of TV detector vans."

Mainly because they don't do anything. They are nothing more than a fear-inducing device to make you think "shit... they're detecting in my road.. I better do something quick!".

Let me explain the flaw in a TV detection van. The supposed principle is that any piece of reception equipment will re-transmit the signals its received after demodulation. This is true, however the nature of those transmissions is unstable.

The reason you can "tune" any radio device is because the signal is on a carrier frequency. By modulating this carrier (amplitude for vision, frequency for audio) you can encode the information. The point is, the information is always around the carrier frequency in one way or another.

Now, demodulate that signal and you're left with the raw information. The frequency jumps about wildly, the amplitude is unstable, there's practically nothing to lock on to. The best you can hope for is the presence of a sync signal, at a fixed rate of 50Hz for vertical or 15kHz for horizontal. But realistically, these could be anything from background noise to mains hum. You're just not going to be able to accurately deduce the reception of a video signal.

Meanwhile, there's the transmission strength issue. As anybody whose played with a science fair electronic set knows, even with 9V of battery behind it, you don't get more than a few feet unless you have a serious mast handy and a decent power transmitter. The maximum voltage is (or should be) around 1V inside a telly, before its seperated into bits for assembling the picture. This isn't going to transmit more than a few centimetres from the television.

Anything that is higher than this won't be a proper TV signal, and comes under the same heading as background noise.

So, in short, TV detector vans are pretty impossible to work unless televisions have a built-in "find me evading licensing here" beacon. The vans are a scare tactic. The BBC/TV Licensing have a database of all addresses with licence. Anyone who doesn't fit this gets a visit from TVL agents, who think they have police powers. They have in the past turned up at people's houses who have nothing even close to a telly, and told them straight faced "you have a television because we've detected it - now pay your licence fee!".

Oh and of course, if you call your local neighbourhood bobby to resolve the issue, they will take sides with the TVL. I'm afraid the BBC is most definitely on the corrupt organisations list, along with the police, the court system and the government.

-- Richard

Apricot drops 'too complicated' Linux from netbook line



I think we can all see exactly what happened here... the very reason Microsoft has been sued by several major governments:

<apricot> Look world! We got a cute laptop!

<microsoft> Very nice. Whats it run?

<apricot> Linux or Windows XP.

<microsoft> Uh...

<apricot> The Linux variant being cheaper, naturally.

<microsoft> Well... we can do Windows XP at that price...

<apricot> Cool!

<microsoft> ... as long as you promise not to sell the Linux one.

<apricot> uh well uh thats.. um er.. *sigh* it's a deal.

<microsoft> nice.

<-- insert lawsuit here -->

-- Richard

Ann Summers yanks chocolate willy spread



Do we really want to know what testing is to be done with regards chocolate willy spread?

"Ok, this is spread #4, applied to John's cock, please suck him off and give us your thoughts."


-- Richard

Wacky Jacqui's yoof ID site goes silent



BREAKING NEWS - Government statistic turns out to be wrong

(London - UK)

A statistic previously published by the government has turned out to be completely unreflective of reality, sources claim. A survey that actually asked for the public's opinion (in a rare moment of democracy presumably leaked by the government) shows that people don't agree with what the government say they should.

Government sources are reportedly annoyed that the people didn't swallow their crap as they'd hoped, but said they will be continuing to make it up as they go along in the future in order to enact policies that they know the public hate, especially if the policy is ill-conceived, pointless, and/or a waste of money.

Said minister Davide Bl'Unquette, "This is a disappointing day for us. We have tried to con the public, and they showed that they do actually have brains after all. We know that ID cards will do nothing for the country, but we will continue to press the point as we need to find something to do with the money."


Jacqui Smith resurrects 42-days after Lords rejection

Black Helicopters

Ignore David Davis

I wouldn't pay any attention to David Davis. If you spend some time doing some real digging, you'll find that his high profile supporters are all people who stand to gain from the passing of said bill.

David Davis' stunt is a cunning reverse-psychology vote grabber. It runs like this:

Davis: I shall not be part of this liberty stripping system any longer!

Public: Good! What will you do?

Davis: I shall resign, and force a by election! The people shall show by their vote if they want this bill out or not!

Public: Absolutely! We'll vote for you!

*** Election passes ***

Davis: Now that I'm in, and the conservatives run the country, this 42-day thing isn't such a bad idea....

Public: But... you said....

Davis: Stuff that. You were gullible. Carry on... *** parliament act stamp ***

Shami Chakrabarti is another faux libertarian. One day she'll be all "this takes away human rights!" and the next day you'll find out she was at the top table of a Fabian Society meeting that decided they should push to ban people using the word "chav". Can't have it both ways Shami.

-- Richard

Laptops to blame for Qantas jet plunge?


Just silly.

If aeroplanes could be "controlled" by random wireless signals then we're all in a lot of trouble.

May I suggest Airbus is clearly playing the card marked "What can we blame instead of admitting to shoddy design and construction?".

-- Richard

BT's 21st Century network, er... isn't


Clues now on special - Aisle 5!

Allow me to paraphrase all of this into a nice tidy little statement:

"The internet system we are rolling out will be completed just in time to be incompatible with the internet. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by spending billions of pounds on a system that will work up until the point in which it is ready to be deployed."

Nice one.

Not that many other ISPs (in reference to AAISP) are embracing IPv6 either mind. S'ok lads... its only "supposed" to be completely switched over by 2012... no rush or anything...

-- Richard

WebKit passes third Acid test


What you fail to mention...

Lets analyse something here...

"Chris Wilson, platform architect for Microsoft's Internet Explorer, has stated that while Acid 3 is "a collection of interesting tests," it is not Microsoft's goal to comply.

And don't all you open-source lot start tutting and muttering "typical Microsoft" either. Mozilla's Firefox 3 team has also dismissed Acid 3 saying: "None of the issues on the Acid 3 list are important enough.""

Lets run a couple of comparisons on whose implementing what eh?

Mozilla Firefox 3.0.1 scores a fairly respectable 71. In this case, Firefox can fairly comfortably sit the claim that the remaining tests are nothing to worry about, being as they are, mostly limited to things that most people will never encounter.

MSIE on the other hand...

Well. Its difficult to tell, as it doesn't even render the page nearly correctly. MSIE7 shows a jumbled mess. If I read it right, I think it scored a disastrous 12.

Now however you look at it, when a browser can't handle 4/5 of the web standards, you have to ask questions. Perhaps Chris WIlson would care to compare for himself and see how MSIE is not a web browser? (I'd say at least 3/5 is needed to qualify as a web browser).

-- Richard

P.S. For further comparison, Google Chrome scored 78. IIRC Safari/Windows scored similar, along with Opera achieving a respectable 84. Kinda makes "12 is OK really" look like a crap statement.

Germans give peeking Google one in the eye



Two comments in this article immediately make me believe there are people in this world that need to be shot for failing to meet the minimum IQ required for human society:

"The 5,000 inhabitants find the project "extremely alarming" as criminals can plan break-ins more easily"

As opposed to...!?!?! If a criminal stands on the street and eyes up the house they can still plan break ins! For <something>s sake, Google StreetView does not give you anything you can't go and see with your own damn eyes!

"Google Street View "can be misused by child predators to target children""


Please, someone justify this comment. I see no worth in it whatsoever. Its been concocted by some sort of child-safety-fear cotton-wool wrapped idiot who thrusts the "child safety" card into the area as soon as the first syllable of "camera" is even thought of.

What are child predators going to do? Oh there's a child... I'll hang around that area in the hope that nobody in a 2 mile radius wil be around with the exception of that child who is so obviously guaranteed to be there at the same place at the same time every day.

Re-read that last paragraph. Have you realised how ridiculous the concept sounds? Why do people think that just because Google turns up with a camera that suddenly the rest of humanity disappears from the vicinity and leaves the nefarious to it? This simply does not happen.

Now ENOUGH with the stupid comments from the "OOH OOH ME FOR THE NEXT MEDIA COMMENT!" crowd. They don't have enough intelligence to be permitted audience for comment.


-- Richard

Superfluid leak downs LHC for months


You missed some research there....

"Even if any bystanders had escaped being turned into frosty stalagmite statues, they might still have suffocated as the helium rapidly evaporated into gas and drove out any air in the vicinity."

Except that when the LHC is "powered up" (you know, that big non-event a couple of Wednesdays back) nobody is allowed into the tunnels. Not in case of lethal helium roaming the area, but because its a little more radioactive down there than the human body normally takes a liking to.

So uh yeah... Research? Comes cheap these days I'm assured...

-- Richard

Gemalto glues DVD onto a SIM


Why use huge plastic in the first place?

I really don't see the reason for such a huge piece of plastic anymore anyway.

Originally, the credit-card sized plastic with punch-out SIM was introduced for backwards compatibility. Some really old phones that used that Anna-Logg system took credit-card sized SIMs. When the chip got down to its current size, it was morphed into its current form to be compatible with both old phones and the newer mini-SIM cards.

Since there are little to none analogue services still in operation, I can't see why the still bother manufacturing such a huge lump of plastic.

-- Richard

Freelancers might be taxed as employees after High Court ruling


How its done

"I was never an employee of the AA and I simply cannot understand how the High Court has reached its decision."

Its amazing how people still believe we live in a country of an honest justice system.

This is how its done:

Ruling against him means more money for government.

The High Court is more corrupt than a FAT file system after 3 months of Windows ME running on it.

The High Court serves the government.


HC: "We *could* rule in favour on the plaintiff, which would be just"

GOVT: "Yes, but then we would lose money"

HC: "This is a point, but we wouldn't see said money..."

GOVT: "Well, swing things our way and you might..."

HC: "Ah. Your drift is caught with aplomb."

PLAINTIFF: "So, what say?"

HC: "Denied."

Seriously. This happens. This is why the recent case against the Lisbon treaty was chucked out. Not because it was "politics dressed up as law" (it wasn't, treason is a crime), but because the government didn't like it.

Cambodian police force? Pure, in comparison to Britain these days.

-- Richard

BOFH: Lock and reload

Thumb Up

Inspired by...

... recent FastHosts lawsuits perchance? (Shirely Shum Mishtake?).

Quality as always.

-- Richard

Houston, we have a virus

Thumb Up


There's been a little comment on "how does a virus infect a machine in space without an internet connection?".

Well, if you watch a couple of the NASA documentaries, you'll see that the ISS actually has a little network going on, complete with wireless access. Due to the time taken to verify security and reliability the laptops tend to run Windows 98 (insert own joke about reliability here), as this was the last "certified" Windows OS.

The ISS itself periodically has an internet connection back to earth. Its not constant as the running costs would be astronomical (I'm here all week people), so its just connected when needed, and IIRC once or twice a day for the crew to keep in touch with email.

So yes, even the ISS is not immune to internet viral infection.

-- Richard

CERN declares Large Hadron Collider perfectly safe


How to talk b*ll*cks convincinyl.

I have two issues here with the confirmation of safety:

"According to the well-established properties of gravity, described by Einstein’s relativity, it is impossible for microscopic black holes to be produced at the LHC."

Would that be the THEORY of relativity then? The one thats still yet to be proven or disproven, since if it had, would be called the LAW of relativity? Its always nice to rely on unproven science....

"[Vaccuum bubbles are the universe in] a more stable state...in which we could not exist. Since such vacuum bubbles have not been produced anywhere in the visible Universe, they will not be made by the LHC."

Be serious. Thats the physicist equivalent of saying "Well it works fine on MY PC, so it should be fine on yours."

Don't get me wrong by the way, I'm all for science and think the LHC will be interesting, but if you're going to convince the public its safe, at least do so in a convincing manner.

-- Richard

UK clamps down on bus-spotting terror menace


The evidence seizing law

"...they have the authority, under the Police and Criminal Evident Act, to seize the camera and arrest the individual."

Ok lets clear this up.

If you take innocuous pictures, the Police can't do anything. If they believe you have evidence of a crime being committed, then its a slightly different story.

The key point is that just taking a photo isn't in itself a crime, regardless of what you take photos of. Even the Instilling-Terror-Into-The-Public Act 2000 can't help them here, unless they can prove there and then that your activities are definitely part of a terrorist plot.

Now, if you take pictures of a crime being comitted (regardles of who's comitting it) things change a little. The Police do have a right to obtain any pictures pertaining to evidence of said crime, BUT you do have a choice of how they get it.

While inevitably you will have to hand something over, you can either hand over your film/card straight away, OR you have the right to make a copy for the Police instead, and as such they have to wait while you do so.

If you refuse to hand over such evidence, it comes under "witholding evidence"/"obstructing justice" which is in fact an offence. This does only apply if you have evidence of a crime being comitted though! AND it does not give them the right to just arrest you like that, they can only arrest you for refusing to hand over evidence when it has been proven you have evidence of a crime.

The best case if its in doubt, is to show your pictures and prove what you do or don't have.

I'm afraid this is another case of the Police not knowing their own laws properly. And don't forget, if your camera is seized, you can usually get it back within a few hours with a statutory declaration (these usually piss the police right off, having to comply with the law and such).

-- Richard

The war on photographers - you're all al Qaeda suspects now


How to deal with Police that make the law up

1. Ask the Police officer to clarify which section of the law you have violated. They won't be able to do this, or they radio through to headquarters and get told its not illegal, and quietly skulk off to the line "just don't do it again". If you get the same answer "it is illegal", tell them that unless they can specify what section it violates, they are clearly just making it up and you have no crime to answer for.

2. Do not hand over film or memory cards just like that. Under no circumstances are the police permitted to seize any property without a court order or search warrant. The Terror act doesn't apply unless they can prove you are doing something contributing to terrorism.

3. If they say you are filiming sensitive buildings, ask for clarification. Photography of buildings is not illegal by any stretch, however you can extend a gesture of goodwill by offering to delete the photos in question if they are not that important to you. At the end of the day however, the decision is yours and they can't do anything even if you are photographing MI6.

4. If they say you are photographing children, remind them this is not illegal unless the children are in some sort of pornographic pose, which in a town centre is unlikely. Unless a parent (or indeed child) has made a specific complaint, the Police are powerless.

5. If in the event you arrested for failing to comply, behave calmly and co-operatively. When you are presented to the cop shop, remind the officers there you have been arrested illegaly for a non-existent crime, and demand (politely, but firmly) that the law is checked there and then. Make sure the arresting officers stay present to hear the outcome of this. When you are let go, request that the officers are dealt with in respect to false arrests.

6. If your property is seized without your consent, go to your local court and request and fill in a statutory declaration. This is a form that declares that your property was taken without court order or search warrant for no good reason and that no crime has been comitted. The court will normally get a judge to sign this off very quickly. Present it to the cop shop where your property is being held illegaly, and they will be forced to return it.

You have rights - despite what the government and police would like you to think.

-- Richard

Firefox 3: now available bug-free, say devs


Bug-free? Uhm. no.

Downloaded update via Firefox's auto update thingy.



App locked up, forcing one core to 100%.

Memory usage at 565Mb and climbing.

Reverting back to RC1 does not fix issue.

Suggest developer's comments are "steaming heap of bullshit that make a politician look a paragon of honesty".

Incidentally, I had to manually delete sessionStore.js just to get it working again.

-- Richard

UK gov waves white flag on secret lobbying ruling


Same for Common Purpose?

Does this mean we can expect similar disclosures of the closed, unminuted meetings of the Common Purpose organisation?

This is the government run "charity" of which £100m taxpayer money has been spent on subtley brainwashing the young to believe the EU is a good thing whilst simultaneously supressing any public objection. Both Gordon Brown and David Cameron are members, and Tony Blair is the current head.

If there's a Common Purpose graduate at El Reg, then this post will be censored too... in the public interest of course.