* Posts by BossHog

108 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Apr 2007


Life on Mars means subsisting on grim diet of turd-garden spinach



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The IT Crowd returns to Channel 4 for a final episode

IT Angle

Where's the IT angle?

Oh, wait. Yeah.

Kepler continues exoplanet bonanza

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Re: Moons

I salute you.

Fatty French Kilogram needs a new-year diet, say Brit boffins


Re: Missing something?

I find it hard to believe these are significantly worse than the platinum chunk.


Re: Post vanished into the ether.

Is this significantly harder than looking after a platinum chunk?


@AC above

+1 amen brother!


Missing something?

Maybe I am missing something, but couldn't we just define the kg by saying something like 'a kilo is the rest mass of X number of Carbon-12 atoms'? Or, the mass-equivalence of the energy of X many photons of frequency Y?

Why are we using physical measures -- is there any good reason other than it is too hard to calibrate to the definitions given above?

30 years ago, at flip of a switch, the internet as we know it WAS BORN


The Internet always existed...

It just had zero nodes.

London Blitz bomb web map a hit-and-miss affair


Re: I can't find the bomb crater in my back garden

This is like a Viz top tip :)

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Thanks for making me chuckle!

Ah, the Great British Nan - a fearsome institution!


Re: agreed

I'm from Pompey too... I thought it was interesting to see that the University decided to map the London Blitz rather than Portsmouth bomb sites, but I guess they have their reasons. I hope that they do other cities too -- though terrible, the history is fascinating. I can vouch for the fact that my beloved Portsmouth took a pounding, which is now why she looks like she was hit repeatedly with the ugly stick :) PUP!

WWII HERO PIGEON crypto message STUMPS GCHQ boffins


Re: I hope ..

Was he any good? Mmm, chimney pigeon jerky....

How spreadsheets (nearly) conquered and killed the financial industry


Seen it many times

I've worked in finance for a long time, and this article seems accurate to me. I particularly had to laugh at the description of a change management form copied from "primordial times" as I have seen exactly this pattern!

That's not to say that there aren't successful centralised systems in banks and the like - I've had the joy of creating a fair number. Doing so usually involves reverse engineering logic and workflow out of guts of a creaking, megalithic spreadsheet though!

In my experience, the spreadsheet jockeys are smart people, who innovate and experiment via their sheets, and eventually the sheets end up being core to some new and maturing product or process. Only when operational risk gets way too hideous does anyone dare to wrestle control of these sheets off the traders (and even then, they don't always succeed!).

The resulting projects are fraught with technical and political difficulties. If you throw sub-par outsourcing partners, guarded SMEs, and very bolshy head traders into the mix, you get a recipe for projects which are very hard to deliver (I have the grey hairs and twitch to prove it!).

Beer - because the memories have come flooding back :)

Astronauts (or other 'nauts) could find life on Mars quite healthy

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"As opposed to red sand, they actually be rocky"

I had to read this with a Wiltshire accent, like Phil Harding out of Time Team.

So, what IS the worst film ever made?


Birdemic - Shock and Terror

Seriously, this is a really dreadful movie.

Jackpot: astronomers tag Goldilocks planet



... Star-freighter?



This is a planet where you can go skiing every "month"!

How to tell if your biz will do a Kodak



Who ever says po-tah-to? Anyone? No? Dust?

Calling all readers: Want some new icons?


You don't mess with the Lohan

That is all.


For those mobile fails...

And Apple with a worm coming out; a Window with a broken pane; and an Android in "kill all humans" mode.

Republicans believe in 'climate change' but not 'global warming'



"However, a student of history can tell you that it has been warmer in past times than it is now, and human burning of fossil fuels has had nothing to do with those periods."

Frustratingly enough, archaeological evidence & primary historical records are dismissed as "anecdotal" and "unscientific" by those who wish to play down pre-industrial climate change.

If I was a historian or an archaeologist, I'd be royalled peeved by the way the scientists treat evidence which they *should* be using to sanity check their models & theories.

Check out this 1999 article from the Independent - before it was anathema to say the olden days were warmer. How much more fun it was when you could just think it was neat that the Romans grew grapes in Lincolnshire, without getting shouted at by angry people!




"If I recall correctly, the whole 'climategate' thing was started by a Daily Telegraph journo deliberately misrepresenting a scientific paper on a blog"

Nothing to do with a bunch of emails exposing crooked science practices then?

NASA aims for space tests of Mars-in-a-month plasma drive


This pleases me...

"The blue glowing engine exhausts in Star Wars are actually quite realistic, it turns out"


Huawei to gift underground coverage to London


Do not want...

.. no, please, no.

Oracle gives 21 (new) reasons to uninstall Java



*A lot!* +1

There really is no alternative to the JVM - it is the most ubiquitous platform going.

We really do write code on Windows PCs and deploy it to Linux servers, and it works great. I can only imagine how much of a pain it would be to have to cross-compile and worry about all that platform specific crud.

Sure, the Java language has some annoying features, but Java also has some of most comprehensive, well-tested and well-understood libraries of any programming language *ever*, and all the tools & community help you could ever want.

Java is the only industrial-strength cross-platform option.

If all you want is the industrial-strength part, then yeah, you *could* use .NET... but you'll have to junk it all when Microsoft decide it's time for you to move to "Visual-C# @Cloud", or whatever comes next...

Ofcom okays Derren Brown psychic-baiting


Dead people

Do people end up dead shortly after you speak to them?

Cisco promises half a billion dollars for Cameron's BIG idea



I'm going to need a smaller hat.

419ers strip lonely heart mum of £80k


I feel sorry for her

Poor lady - even now you can tell she is more upset about losing the bloke than she is about losing the money! The disappointment and loss of happiness must be truly crushing.

Never underestimate the frailty of a vunerable human spirit, nor the cruelty of others.

There but for the grace of science, go I.

Gov will spend £400k to destroy ID card data


Thank goodness though!

Seriously, I know £400k seems a lot of dosh, but frankly I am still so glad that they are getting rid of this whole sorry system that I don't really care. We came damn close to being card-carrying members of HMP Britain. Phew!

Boris bikes for all from next week


At peak times..

.. at the busiest stations etc, you will find that there are attendants who empty the rack (and keep an eye on the bikes by the side of it), so there are always free slots there.

The system isn't perfect, but they are working hard to make it function well, and so far I have found it great. As always with these things, you get to know the quirks.

Also, time is never critical on a bike - because if it was, you would pedal harder and get there earlier, right?

YES! It's the twists-in-midair FALLING GECKO ROBOT!



I can't believe it's not physics.

Top Ten Arcade Classics

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They still look awesome to me now :)

Airport screeners go for the groin

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We've already uninvented Concorde, so it's only a matter of time before we uninvent the rest of the planes. Steadily backwards....

Prosecutor won't resign over lewd texts to 'hot' crime victim



Yeah, this is just plain creepy.

The guy obviously is a little unhinged.

Just 5% of workers ever truly leave the office



I call bull on this.

Authentic Navy rum: Yours for £600 a bottle



You only live once! :)

Chilean tarantulas menace Bolton

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I for one... etc.

<griffin>There ya go.</griffin>



Spider cake.

BOFH: Little ups and downs


Careful, son.

You're not making any friends in the East End, mate!

FLYING CAR, full hover, fairly quiet, offered to US Marines


Homes and cars and phones

Off topic, but it appears to me that the technology in homes, cars and phones, has been ramping up at quite different rates.

Phones are massively high tech compared to the ABS ring-diallers of the 1980s - they have no wires, they have touch screens and on-board computers with hours of battery life in a few hundred grams. Similarly, cars have come a long way - they are now snug cocoons of comfort and safety, with a great deal of self-tuning intelligence & environmental control on board.

On the other hand, houses haven't really moved forward at the same pace. Which is a bit poor really, when you consider how much they cost.

My house has sash-windows for "environmental control", and the "self-tuning intelligence" is a thermostat (and even that is a bit faulty). The boiler clatters and bangs. The drain is a plastic pipe, and, er.. there isn't any other technology to talk about.

OK, so my washing machine kicks ass, but that's not really part of the house, right? And it's not networked :)

Why do you think this has happened this way? Wouldn't it make more sense to have our homes as a cocoon of comfort and safety (not that I'm advocating having 1980s cars again :).

Are we viscerally opposed to this kind of interference in our "cave"... or is it just that we want to have somewhere we can go were things won't "go wrong".

Did the Victorians feel this way too, and turn down amazing advances in the 1860s? Like the Electrochronotransmotivator - a device which sets the colour of your wallpaper to soothe your mood.

'Huge airships to carry freight starting 10 years from now'


Stirling engine

You could perhaps use an air-cooled stirling engine with that design.

No need to boil water then!

Flying car gets helpful road-kit weight exemption from feds


Well and good, but...

I want one with anti-gravity pods that crackle with static! And gullwing doors!

The Reg guide to Linux, part 1: Picking a distro


Oh my god....

...we've all gone to war!!

Newsweek: 'Zombies rise from grave, invade US'



OMG Zombies! Wait a sec.... 30 lives! **BUDDA BUDDA BUDDA**

V-22 Osprey downblast scatters spectators like skittles




Blunkett threatens to sue for £30 ID card refund


Their problem

"If you travel to a country where you are required to have your national ID card or passport on your person at all times, then having a card as opposed to a passport is a significant benefit."

Not really - it's still a document that you have to carry, and makes you into a crook if you lose it.

At any rate, all your are doing is pointing out how flawed and unreasonable these laws are.... I'd like to say I'll never visit these authoritarian regimes, but there are a lot of them!

X-51 hypersonic scramjet test: Flameout at Mach 5?

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Worth it just for this...

"modified B-52 bomber test mothership"

Get in!

Brit honeybees crawl through rotten winter

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Bees are fucking awesome!

No refunds for ID card pioneers