* Posts by Mark Monaghan

58 publicly visible posts • joined 14 Aug 2008


Airport scanner staff object to vetting

Mark Monaghan

@nobody has to be vetted

What about the dog?

It's the one with the aniseed in the pocket.

Mark Monaghan
Big Brother

We are not amused

Presumably body piercings will show up on these scanners as well...

Guard A: Do you think that's a knife?

Guard B: No it's just something he's got stuck through his... Eeww!

That should take their mind off "bombs and knives".

Police arrest MD of dowsing-rod 'bomb detector' firm

Mark Monaghan


This reminds me of the 'Dragon Detector' described by Terry Pratchett?

The only difference seems to be that the end of the stick is blown off when you find a mine, rather than being set alight by a dragon.

On that basis it does actually work ... after a fashion.

Mark Monaghan

@Darwin Award?

You don't imagine these morons will actually be using the sticks themselves?

They'll almost certainly give them to some poor sod and order them to use them.

I don't believe there's a 'Darwin Award by Proxy' yet.

IPS in cunning 'get an ID card, get crucified' scheme

Mark Monaghan

Obvious fake

I seem to recall that Spartacus was a Thracian, and not a "British Citizen" as claimed by the ID card.

As for "So that's that one nailed then", you could at least have waited until I'd finished my tea.

Slovakian police chief quits over Dublin explosives run

Mark Monaghan

You can't make it up

It's a good job he wasn't flying to .uk as, even when the truth came out, TPTB would still insist on keeping his DNA, adding him to the "no fly" list etc. just in case...

Either that or he would have been shot as he boarded a tube train, on the grounds he was a foreign electrician.

I wonder how long it will be before another of the eight passengers gets pulled in for having "residual traces of explosives" found in their luggage.

Nothing to hide != Nothing to fear.

NASA's nuclear Mars tank gets improved cooker mod

Mark Monaghan


Well let's hope they do a proper job then - we wouldn't want another half-baked Martian coming and posting here, would we.

A decade to forget - how Microsoft lost its mojo

Mark Monaghan
Gates Horns

Never say never again

People that write off Microsoft are overlooking the company's great talent for reinventing itself. Remember it is essentially a marketing / legal operation with an IT division tacked on.

As for IE (and I'm no fan of the wretched thing) anything that still has "only" 63.5% of the market is likely to be around for some time.

As someone once said "Do not underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers".


@Big-nosed Pengie: 01-01-2000 to 31-12-2009 is ten years or one decade. It's just not the FIRST decade of the 21st century.


GSMA recruits a bit of Fry and Duran Duran

Mark Monaghan

Duran Duran?

Wouldn't "Dire Straits" have been more appropriate?

They could have performed "Money for nothing".

Swindon twins with Walt Disney World

Mark Monaghan


I suppose the "Eternal Fires of Hell" were not available.

Walking With Dinosaurs star goes walkabout

Mark Monaghan

Rules of engagement?

"Hey Juan there's another dinosaur making for the border!"

"Have you been confiscating contraband again Gonzales?"

Manchester journo gets first ID card - late

Mark Monaghan
Black Helicopters

Fuzzy Logic

With a bit of luck she will be pulled in and questioned now.

After all her fingerprints are going to be the closest (and only) match on the database.

Boffins: Stress of family Xmas can cause fatal diseases

Mark Monaghan

Ratty mice?

Christmas was the only time I used to pull rank in the department.

"Look I'm the senior man here, so I'm staying and manning the help desk. The rest of you can go home to your loved ones, wives and children."

Gov targets boozers as Manc ID card scheme launches

Mark Monaghan

You're my best mate you are

Given that "nearly ten per cent of passports are lost by young people on nights out", I wonder how many of the bars in Manchester have readers to confirm that the ID card is both genuine and is being used by its owner.

Does iris recognition work after seven pints of strong lager?

It's the one with the pocket full of plastic cards - and the schizophrenia medication.

'Alienated' gamer sues WoW for ruining life

Mark Monaghan
Paris Hilton


Raid a gnu?

<-- Loin Harpist or possibly Lost Hairpin

IT admins: we don't need no stinkin' servers

Mark Monaghan

This sounds familiar

I know a company where the IT Manager suggested disposing of the servers and "repurposing" their room on the grounds that he had "never seen anyone using them".

No true BOFH would ever consider disposing of hardware unless they were upgrading (or had a cash buyer).

BOFH: Slab happy

Mark Monaghan

"new office footpath"

Excellent. Have a be-be-be-beer.

Hotmail imposes tracking cookies for logout

Mark Monaghan


"...you must enable third party cookies by chaging your browser settings"

Oh yes I see the typo now...

In "chaging" the "s" has been changed to a "c" and the second "g" has been omitted.

I blame phonetic spelling.

'L33T' web defacer blames Durham police for Pakistani conflict

Mark Monaghan

@Joe Bloggs

>The number for the police is no longer 999, it's been changed to...

No no. Modern technology has intervened (as per the Simpsons)

"You have selected - Regicide. If you know the name of the king being killed press 1..."

It's the reflective jacket with "UR SECURITY IS ZERO%" on the back.

Employers to take fingerprints for CRB checks

Mark Monaghan

Some day my prints will come


Given the "small bookcase"* IQ of the average employment agent, I would say that the attached file is likely to contain the fingerprints of somebody else.

Your file is actually called "Prints (17).jpg" - nobody told the agent to delete the old files from "C:\My Documents\My Prints\" and the instructions told him to attach "Prints.jpg".


@Pete 2

My CV contains a gap for the time I worked as a builder's labourer. As it has no relevance to any job I apply for, I don't put it down.

Several interviewers have queried this gap, and my reply is always: "I'm sorry but I cannot discuss that period with you until I have established you have the necessary clearance."

They usually stare, swallow hard and move on.

Agincourt: The sensational truth

Mark Monaghan
Thumb Up

An everyday story of country folk

Some of those French knights are fighting the battle twice - which is just the sort of underhanded, cowardly and despicable trick you'd expect from them.

Belkin Powerline HD Gigabit mains Ethernet adaptor

Mark Monaghan

Distribution boards

"Distribution boards" (I presume you mean the multi-socket extension things and not the three-phase cabinet things) are an abomination and something to be avoided if possible.

They are almost invariably made of the cheapest materials available and often fail to make proper contact with the plugs/PSUs plugged into them. ("Is it meant to be making that fizzing noise - and the smoke?")

They also have a tendency to breed and by the time you get three or four extensions down the chain, the noise, voltage drop and heating effects can be noticeable. Especially when the last one has a 3 kW heater plugged into it. ("Well it's cold in that corner.")

Then somebody pulls out the one plugged into the wall to use the vacuum cleaner, and everything in the room goes off. ("Why hasn't the TV recorded my program?")

I also suspect the ones with surge suppressors and the like, could have a bad influence on the signal.


Ares 1-X booster rocket dented in test flight

Mark Monaghan


"Well doctor, I was just minding my own business doing a bit of quiet filter feeding when something dropped out of the sky and hit me ... Where? Off the coast of Florida ... Oh I see. Just behind the blow-hole there's a bruise and a lump coming up ... yes quite a big one - I'm going to look like a humpback in the morning ... no I don't know what it was but it hurt like hell. "

PC Refresh Equals PC Disposal

Mark Monaghan
Big Brother


We use HM Government approved methods:

PCs - Sell them in bulk to that dodgy-looking guy with the stall at the local car boot sale.

Laptops, notebooks and memory devices - Leave them in the back of a taxi

Software, manuals and printer cartridges - Pile randomly in a large cupboard in case they're needed later.

Well worth the money we paid to those consultants...

Think you're tech savvy? You won't be when you're old

Mark Monaghan

Nostalgia ain't what it used to be

I took my nephews to the Science Museum in London a couple of years ago and was surprised to see an ICL 19xx series CPU in a glass case.

It only seems like yesterday when I used to get one of these started on the switches every Monday morning.

<Wipes away tear>

Wales adopts mobile average speed cameras

Mark Monaghan
Black Helicopters

Safety vs Revenue

We are told that the aim of a safety camera is to raise driving standards in general. Therefore if you issue points for each offence and then take away the licence when you reach a magic number, you will slowly remove all the "bad" drivers from the road.

So there's no real need for a financial penalty is there.

Hang on there's some flashing lights outside...

US Spec Ops operates psywar websites targeted at UK

Mark Monaghan

@SirTainleyBarking: Special relationship

Every prostitute claims that they have a "Special relationship" with their boyfriend/girlfriend/pimp. Need I say more?

It's got "you can trust me" on the back.

Secret US spontaneous human combustion beam tested

Mark Monaghan

@Stevie: Wasting moths?

You mean to tell me they're wasting moths now - the b*stards.

Still I suppose you have to consider every angle in these committees.

Men far worse than women on password security

Mark Monaghan

Now let me see...

> Nearly two-thirds of men polled said they would open a link or attachment from a friend without first checking its provenance, compared to a more cautious 48 per cent of women.

I was going to say that if the email is titled "Cute cat doing silly things" then it's a dead cert that that most of the females in our office will open it.

But, as the Moderatrix is watching, then there's probably not a "right" answer to this one - just like when SWMBO asks me if I think she's putting on weight.

It's the one with "Float like a butterfly, sting like a Bee" on the back.

Illinois bright spark sparks car inferno

Mark Monaghan
Paris Hilton

Definitely a Darwin candidate

Now if she had actually got into the blazing car to drive it way from the pump...

Paris? Well there's no sign of "Intelligent Design" here.

Twitter tracker goes twotspotting

Mark Monaghan

Out of the blue

Is there a Predator / Reaper option for when you've located the twot?

NY residents sue for $100m over phone masts

Mark Monaghan

Mast debaters

I once attended a planning meeting where a group of residents objected to a new phone mast on the grounds that:

"The phone companies should do something about the terrible service in the area, before they put up any new masts."

Blimp radar makes first flight

Mark Monaghan


Time to dust down that old Sopwith Camel and get out the Very pistol then

It's the flying jacket with the goggles in the pocket

Exploding iPhone injures French teen

Mark Monaghan

Marketing opportunity?

Just announce that your product now has a lifetime guarantee.

El Reg space paper plane christened Vulture 1

Mark Monaghan

Launch vehicle / lifting craft

Surely the launch vehicle should be named "Rover".

Be seeing you.

Man blames cat for child porn downloads

Mark Monaghan
Paris Hilton

@AC 10th August 2009 09:16

>I thought "hell the hell can you get links to porn from Doctor Who?" unitl I started reading some the the filenames like "16yr old girl visits doctor who..."

Do not enter the names of both WW2 atomic bombs into a search engine at the same time, unless you want some seriously disturbing results. I speak from personal experience.

Trying to book a hotel in France might be interesting as well...

Mark Monaghan

Get out claws er clause?

I don't believe this scenario for a moment.

Any half decent cat would have arranged for a dog to take the blame.

What happened? Did he forget to feed the cat?

Apple blueprints warranty Big Brother

Mark Monaghan

I never touched it

I used to repair electronic devices under warranty. A lot of these showed evidence of being opened. This was normally just where someone had had a quick look to see if a fuse had blown or similar. These were usually repaired without comment.

The ones that came back with missing parts, broken security labels, chips reversed in their sockets and connectors cut off, were a different matter. Most off these, according to the customer, had "not been opened" and had "gone wrong on their own".

These used to get returned with a sticker inside them saying "Remember what happened when Nero fiddled."

Robotic personal photographer unveiled

Mark Monaghan

Uh ho

Has anyone told Robocop about this?

It's got a Press card in the pocket.

Met amends journo photo guidance to prevent interference

Mark Monaghan

IRA v Al Q (Not a forthcoming event)


The main difference between the Provisional IRA and Al Q is that members of the former usually arranged to be out of range when their bombs went off. There was also a policy of issuing warnings before their outrages took place.

The suicide bomber approach that Al Q (and other groups) use is a different matter and one that it is very hard to defend against.

Couple that with a government that jumps at shadows, (see icon), and cannot admit to making mistakes, and you get the "everyone is a suspect" mentality that is driving policy at the moment.

I would not be surprised to hear that more people are killed in photography related accidents each year than by terrorism.

You know the sort of thing. "If I lean a bit further over the railings I can get a better view of the beach. Yes it's getting much closer now.."

Vote now to name El Reg space plane

Mark Monaghan

What about the launch vehicle?

I propose that the "launch vehicle" should be named "Rover".

It has a Portmeirion guide book in the pocket.

EU court rules 11-word snippets can violate copyright

Mark Monaghan

Breaking news

Mary had a little lamb, Its fleece was white as snow, I would have written more, but it's copyright you know.

Swine flu will [enter scare words here]...

Mark Monaghan

All aboard the 'B' Ark

"other groups depending on need"

These groups wouldn't by any chance include MPs, senior civil servants and the like?

I for one would welcome 600+ by-elections

Vulture Central plans Brit-Yank dictionary

Mark Monaghan

If your name is Randolph...

Do not go up to people and say "I'm Randy" as this can be seriously misunderstood.

Mark Monaghan

@Dave in the states

>How do you pronounce the Cisco variety??

We say "rooter" as in "Route 66"

Plasma rocket in new test with Brit supermagnet fitted

Mark Monaghan


I believe this is usually called "lithobraking".

Petrol station robbers cuffed after running out of petrol

Mark Monaghan

Re: Sarah

'Can anyone help me out here?'

Well actually two things come to mind:

1) Alter the copy so that every sentence in the story begins with the phrase "Warning - No IT angle"

2) Think BOFH and arrange that any commentards selecting "Where's the IT angle?" icon are taken to a page that draws their attention to the lack of an IT angle in the story.

Selecting this icon would, of course, also add their name to a list of wanted terrorists and pass their current GPS location to a passing Predator drone.

Can I help you out? Certainly, which way did you come in?

Mark Monaghan

Pure genius

One Mile? I assume the "idiot light" was on as their getaway car waited at the pumps.

These guys could have had a long and lucrative career advising on governments IT projects.

Web swoons as Jackson dies

Mark Monaghan

Michael Jackson was a musician?

You learn something new every day.

I guess he didn't spend all his time developing JSP and JSD then.

Watch out for "Principles of Program Design" being re-released.

Tom Tom flags down 'live traffic' XL satnav

Mark Monaghan

Oops 1:34

The moral of this tale is...

Make sure the battery is charged before you do the demo.

It's the one with the solar panel on the back.