* Posts by Andy Farley

201 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Jul 2008


Ants have careers; you don't want them

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

Could it be because foraging is more dangerous?

Therefore for the investment made in creating an ant, you want to get your wear out of them with the safe tasks before risking them outside.

Makes sense to me.

Michelin critics to football blogger: Salaud! Unhand that URL

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

I know there's very little crossover...

But the guy is on the Football 365 site, even the "eight miles in the other direction" is a trope from there.

There's an 80 page thread on there about it.

He's mainly just having a laugh. If they hadn't been so heavy handed he might have just let them have it for a nominal fee.

As is, good luck to him.

RIM extends BB10 port-a-thon after dev stampede

Andy Farley

I disagree.

They're playing double-or-quit. Good for them, it takes balls in their position.

Scientists spin carbon nanotube threads on industrial scale

Andy Farley


We've got something to tether the shadow squares to.

Titsup Windows Phone 8 orders user to cram 'boot disc' in mobe

Andy Farley

Don't care.

If I was buying a phone with my own money I'd probably go for a Lumia 920. Bored of iPhones and it's got a good camera and looks nice.

People really get too heated about all this. It's only a phone.

Valve's Half-Life

Andy Farley

I'm sorry

you don't love Half Life enough to write this review.

Dishonored game review

Andy Farley

Re: First person. Ugh.

I can't stand 3rd person - I want to BE the character, not navigate the character.

Hopefully you are in the minority and TPS's don't become the norm.

Andy Farley

Re: Glitches

Playing the PC version (with 2G RAM) and I've had zero glitches so far. It's built using the Unreal engine so the underlying tech is rock solid.

I've had one mission where I thought I'd hit a glitch but turned out the NPC was lying to me - brilliant when I realised that.

Jaws restored Blu-ray disc set review

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

I saw this when I was a kid.

I wouldn't put my feet to the bottom of the bed in case there was a shark there.

The shark looking crap was the making of this film. Much more tense without seeing it.

iPad Mini pics spied on Twitter

Andy Farley

The edge

looks rounded, rather than curved as in the iPad, IOW the edge will go out, then come in to the glass.

Seems...crap. The large iPad (maxi-pad?) is nicely designed and the edge of it is one of the most signature bit. Seems an odd thing to change.

Still, I reckon they'll fly off the shelves.

Microsoft sets date for Windows Phone 8 unveiling

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

The 920 looks good actually...

Apple jumped ahead with a quantum leap in smart-phone usability and build quality. Now the other manufacturers have caught up or exceeded them (still think the iPhone 4 is the best phone to hold) other differentiators will start to have an effect.

I think that's where Nokia can build on its traditional strengths - good reception, great cameras and bullet-proof build quality.

I'm 6 months away from the end of my contact but a 920 may be on the cards.

NASA working on faster-than-light drive capable of WARP TEN

Andy Farley

I don’t think we need FtL to colonise the galaxy, considering there’s no rush.

Start mining the asteroids, shipping the proceeds to Earth.

Start trading amongst the miners – no gravity well so it’s cheaper.

Asteroids declare independence.

Mining happens further and further out.

Eventually realise all you need is mass, and not that dot of a Sun.

Start to leave the solar system.

Hundreds of years later hit the Alpha Century system.

Thousands of years after that hit other solar systems.

Colonise them.

Do the same again.

At that point humanity is probably several dozen clades and might bump into FtL Earth ships near habitable planets – but they would never bother living in a gravity well anyway.

Apple 'hasn't really run out of iPhone 5s AT ALL'

Andy Farley

Re: Ugh

You do know it's made up don't you? Not the conclusions but the quote. Pretty obviously humour rather than fact.

Windows Phone 8 stands a chance as Apple, Android dither

Andy Farley

For the first time...

scanning the papers, MS & Nokia were talked about in the same breath as iPhone & Android.

If they start offering some kind of app swap ("We'll buy you 50 new apps to replace the ones you have on iPhone!") they'd probably get more traction.

The more the merrier AFAIAC.

Amazon unveils new hi-def Kindle iPad-killers

Andy Farley

I just want...

a waterproof eInk wifi Kindle. I'd replace my current Kindle with one of them and go back to reading in the bath.

A load of Tosh: External hard drives the new 'personal clouds'

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

HP MicroServer

+ OpenMediaVault for all your badly named storage needs.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Andy Farley

Re: Cool, but...

Hell yeah. The betas were so much better.

Of course the last time I tried to play an FPS online my wrists felt like broken crockery after an hour.

Windows 8 tablets unwrapped in Berlin: Dell goes keyless for ARM

Andy Farley


MS could have actually made some real gains with W8 - made it the OS you use when you want to get stuff done, rather than consume media.

In the time they've taken they could have re-written it to be safe from the ground up and far easier to use by building on what people already know how to do.

Instead they're chasing Apple like a cat after a laser. You'll be able to hear them hit the skirting board from here.

Hundreds of websites go titsup in Prime Hosting disk meltdown

Andy Farley

Not to step into libel territory

But we had a double disk failure on a HP SAN, a "one in several million" chance. Unfortunately this was caused by the controller firmware so could have happened again at any time. I wonder if their firmware was fully patched?

Luckily we'd built in proper redundancy (it was a pension company) and had bitwise VM backup to other-site machines so we were down for 20 minutes with very little data loss.

Of course, they ran off the same SANs, bought at the same time, which meant squeeky bum time while the SANs were replaced and upgraded - four weeks later as we had to wait for HP to test the patch.

RBS must realise it's just an IT biz with a banking licence

Andy Farley

Re: I'd like to hear more about

Cheers Peter & Sir Spoon.

Don't know why that other guy is talking to himself.

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

I'd like to hear more about

how the change management process is counter-productive.

It's something I've, well, "felt" for a while but if it could be quantified & qualified I'd be very interested in hearing the details.

ROBOTS battle bunker-buster bank blast blaggers

Andy Farley

I've always thought....

Liquid nitrogen + sledgehammer might do a good trick against the concrete & steel of an ATM. Poor some on the wall, crack it and viola.

You'd need to be careful picking the money up mind.

Neal Stephenson on swordplay, space and depressing SF

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

Re: If he can make swordplay realistic..

Well....realistic is a bit much to ask. However


is coming out soon, made by the people who made


which I've heard had a very good melee combat engine.

*shrug* we'll see.

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

Science fiction

...is a way of examining humanity.

Change the environment people are operating in, then see what their behaviour is. There are things that change and things that persist. The things that persist are what humanity actually is.

Snow Crash was brilliant, but Anathem is transcendental.

Gabe Newell: Windows 8 is a 'catastrophe' for PC biz

Andy Farley


Don't you have games you should be making?

TBH I'd welcome games on Linux. Would my home machine stop running Windows? No. The Mrs can use windows and I couldn't be arsed teaching her how to use anything else.

Asteroid miners to strap 'scopes to new Virgin Galactic rocket

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

I want

my singleship now please.

Survey asteroids over long period

Find the ones that have a high density from gravitation perturbations of the others

Send prospectors out in covered singleships

Find high densities of gold/platinum/uranium/unobtainium

Fit asteroid with ion motor

Fly it into L4

Melt it with solar mirrors

Spin it to refine

Let it cool

Take the lovely minerals

Match Earth velocity

Drop on desert region



I'm not much of a salesman.

Wish you were here? NASA rover beams postcard from Mars

Andy Farley

Always makes me think of



Watch out for the GIGANTIC ALIEN JELLYFISH, warns space boffin

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

Re: I think she's read "The Culture: Look to Winward"

More The Algebraist.

Numbers don't lie: Apple's ascent eviscerates Microsoft

Andy Farley

Re: By 2004 people had *enough* power

If experience changed the general rule, I'd point to many Apple products that I've known that have lasted vs. many cheaper ones have broken.

I can't stand the cult but they make some good stuff.

I just wish MS had a better answer. Some of the stuff Apple gets a pass on MS would be eviscerated for.

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

By 2004 people had *enough* power

So the old sell of "Wait a year and get a more powerful laptop" stopped being relevant, so people started to invest in ones that were good and would last.

At the time - and now - Apple made the best laptops - they looked good, lasted a long time and never went out of fashion.

So buy an Apple and have it last 5 years *and always look good* or buy (at the time) a Dell, have it break in 2 and look meh by 12 months old.

Lots of other factors of course but I think this had a major effect.

Boffins pull off room-temp quantum computing with home-grown gems

Andy Farley

Quantum computing

To me it reads like "We do this computer thing, then this computer thing THEN THE MAGIC HAPPENS".

I guess I'm obsolete.

CERN catches a glimpse of Higgs-like boson

Andy Farley

I thought

It was called that because everyone said "God! Where the hell IS it?"

Google wingmen rain Project Glass on San Francisco

Andy Farley


Why did the skydivers hand off to psychologists?

Breaking: Megaupload seizures illegal says NZ High Court

Andy Farley


...didn't America used to be cool? I'm sure when I was growing up it was a beacon of freedom and enlightenment.

Now it seems to be rapidly moving towards being a police state and incapable of rational political discourse.

Windows 8: Not even Microsoft thinks businesses will use it

Andy Farley
Thumb Down

I like the Metro interface...

on a phone.

I'd even like the ability to have a live desktop I could pin tiles to...but to abandon the window based task model of all previous iterations is just insane.

Passwords are for AES-holes

Andy Farley

In user testing

For websites we found most people have 3 passwords of various complexity that they always re-use. Force them to do something else and they forget them and are likely to use a standard guessable one. IOW, let people enter what they want to enter.

I'm all for password unblanking functionality as well. Off by default but if you're at home what does it matter if the cat can see over your shoulder? How many of us are in cyber-cafes logging in anyway?

Password blanking is the illusion of security, nothing more.

LG pitches £7k 55in OLED TV, again

Andy Farley

Re: Wall mount?

Don't see how if all the gubbins is in the stand.

Can't see the point really.

Colour Kindle incoming says mole

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

As long as...

They come in under £100 they will fly off the shelves. What I really want is the ability to leave it on the train/beach/roof of the car and not have to commit sepuka.

Of course if it was waterproof too I'd go and get one even though I have a Kindle.

iTunes fanbois outraged by Apple's sex-life quiz probe

Andy Farley

It's always an option

to copy the question into the answer - apart from the obvious ones:

"Least favourite job"

Pulling lobsters out of Jane Mansfield's arse.

Nympho hauled to loon-cooler after serial bonkathon brutality

Andy Farley

I don't think I've seen a thread

with so many ACs.

Funny that.

Ten... two-bay Nas boxes

Andy Farley
Thumb Up

Re: I went down the DIY route

Yep - HP MicroServer with OMV is the way to go. Mine is happily serving content from the cupboard under the stairs via some TP-link homeplugs. Put 4 old 500Gb disks I had spare in there in a RAID 5.

Works a treat and got set up in about an hour.

Got it via my company, VAT back & £100 = ~ £110.

Absolute bargain.

Tablets are the future of the PC, says researcher

Andy Farley

Data is just data

And we will have different devices depending on what you want to do with it.

Consume it on the go - mobile phone

Consume it while stationary - tablets

Create is on the go - laptop

Create is while stationary - desktop

At home I've got a Linux server for my data, 2 iPhones, 3 iPads (Mrs + 2 kids really) & a fast desktop PC.

I think that's what most information workers will end up with eventually.

David Willetts: UK firms need to 'fess up to security boobs

Andy Farley

Heh heh.


Great HR mistakes of our time - Aviva fires 1300 by email

Andy Farley

HR have become powerful

because we’re in a “maximising value” era of management. If you can boost the share price by losing 200 people off the wage bill then you do it, and need HR as an instrument to do so.

The fact that you’ve just fired the R&D staff and in 10 years the company will be nothing but a nostalgia brand held in the Caymans suits the management – the current management – down to the ground, as that’s where their winter home will be.

If we were in a “creating value” era, then engineers & techies would be valued and HR would be relegated to the clerical task it truly is.

Hunters 2

Andy Farley

Combat Mission

is out on iPad.

I thought it was a joke but no, it's there and pretty decent by all accounts.

Novatech pushes affordable Ultrabook

Andy Farley
Thumb Down

No LAN port?

Dear god, don't let this become standard.

BOFH: Dawn raid on Fort BOFH

Andy Farley

Re: Where's the...

It's DLC, like ME3.

Mass Effect 3 crooks trick gamers with fake 'alternate ending'

Andy Farley
Thumb Down

The main thing wrong with ME3

is Origin.

That's why I've not bought it because I doubt that will be fixed.

Giant planet pileups in far-flung star systems: Computer says yes

Andy Farley

Re: Interesting

I'd love to see the battle shown from the Empire’s point of view: guy drafted into the Stormtroopers, goes “in country” with his buddies, only to see them all taken down one-by-one by furry little bastards who live beyond the wire. With a kicking soundtrack – Fortunate son, Wipeout & finally The End.

Instant classic.

Robotics breakthrough blasts crud from that bit behind the lav

Andy Farley


they can self-fill? Or should be able to soon.