* Posts by Melvin Meatballs

28 posts • joined 28 May 2009

How LulzSec pwned The Sun

Melvin Meatballs

Difference in what you can do with it

We take activities of LULZ/Anon etc with a pinch of salt because we all now that ultimately they are a bunch of bored teenagers. And it's kind of fun (sometimes) to watch bored teenagers do some mild mischief.

News Int however are grown-ups who wield a degree of very real power. When their activities overstep an invisible point of public disgust, we have a scandal, a reaction, some minor shuffling at the top, or if proven-illegalities, some jail time.

I doubt that Murdoch actually told his senior staff to break-the-law-to-sell-papers, but more likely created a highly-competitive culture with aspects of fear-driven success. Human ingenuity and flexible morality does the rest.

And whilst a large proportion of the voting public happily believe what they read in the papers without engaging their brain, then our elected representatives will continue to attempt to court those that write the words.

What is amusing/sad/overwhelmingly-wrong is that the disgust of the public is narrowed to focus on billionaires and politicians, rather than to reflect that it is their own lack of desire to think that allows/funds NI's corruption.

'Upgraded' Apple iMacs lock out hard drive replacement

Melvin Meatballs

Buy a bigger drive to start with..

..all but the cheapest allow 2Tb FFS.

or buy one of them external jobs.

or stop storing so much crap.

"but I bought it, so I have a right to do what I want with it..."

yeah, but you don't have a right to expect Apple to make it easy for you.

anyone who has time or desire to faff around with upgrading isn't Apple's primary market.

stop bloody moaning and get on with life !

Would putting all the climate scientists in a room solve global warming...

Melvin Meatballs

Simpleminded me

I take from this that the human race knows the thick end of bugger all about how our planet's climate works.

Hubble squints at most distant galaxy

Melvin Meatballs


Unless that deadline is last orders

PlayStation 3 code signing cracked

Melvin Meatballs

Black Tea Ops

I'm totally pissed off that Sony prevents my PS3 from making tea.

I'm on a mission to 'hack'-saw the slot to accept a tea bag and then apply a boiling water overflow.

If this operation fails, then as my mind is so unbalanced from years of sun-deprivation and the inability to talk to girls, I will mistakenly believe that killing virtual soldiers in a series of 1960s flashbacks makes me a real killer.

The staff of the local Premier Inn will all die as I rescue a teasmaid from their evil clutches.

So will anyone in rooms 9, 19, 18, 4, 6, 21, 17, 14...

Anonymous hacktivists fire ion cannons at Zimbabwe

Melvin Meatballs

Pointless anonymity

"However attacking Zimbabwe government websites is extremely unlikely to have any practical effect on the regime."

Surely attacking any website is extremely unlikely to have any practical effect on anything. Ever.

Except perhaps the egos of all the 12 year olds playing at 'cyber wars'.

Latest military-research boon: Game interface to rule them all

Melvin Meatballs

Where's the crazy angle?

I am utterly disappointed that an El Reg article including DARPA does not mention how crazy they are.

Google boss: 'Creeped out by Street View? Just move'

Melvin Meatballs

Totally Bemused

Now I'll admit, that I've read very little on the topic. Deliberately so. But I really don't 'get' the problem here. So Google knows where I live, knows my browsing habits and if they really wanted to, could probably tell that I buy underwear from M&S. So what.

I get no more spam email or unsolicited post or automated calls than I ever did, and I get a nice history of web sites I've visited that's useful as I'm rubbish at keeping organised bookmarks. I get my email, calendar and other docs anywhere I have a connected device, and it's all free.

What am I supposed to fear by Google knowing lots about me?

It's not that I don't 'care' (in an anti-social, loner sense), but so far, it's not detrimentally impacted my life. I don't see the problem.

Feel free to tell me what I'm missing by being scared of a computer company that it's possible to choose not to use; or being 'creeped-out' by some bloke with a socially-inept language set.

UK privacy watchdog clears Google Wi-Fi slurp

Melvin Meatballs

Tick here to opt-out

I use public transport (only when I have to) and am shocked that some people actually talk. Albeit a one-sided conversation into their sparkly new phone.

"You know Jocasta darling, little Tabitha's new child minder is so good. With all the children.

Yes, I did think that his beard was a little shabby, and that raincoat has definitely seen better days, but as Timmy said to me 'Mummy darling, you really shouldn't judge a book by it's cover'.

And he's so caring and tactile, and takes them swimming so often. You know I simply don't have the time to take them myself. They all tell me he's their special friend. Simply marvellous.

Oh gosh darling, must dash, we've just reached St Mary's"

Whilst alighting in a rather rushed manner she dropped her ever-so-smart diary at my feet. And while I kindly retrieved it from the shabby train floor, my poor eyes were inadvertently drawn to the 'personal details' page which was uppermost.

I am blaming the gathering of personally identifiable data on my parents and teachers who taught me to understand the English language.

Perhaps I should ask everyone in the world if they want to opt-out.

Apple, Google, Microsoft – are you a Brand Taliban or Brand Evangelist?

Melvin Meatballs

Polarised humanity

"none of them have the goodwill, wellbeing or any other positive interest of their customers at heart, their only drive is to make as much money as they possibly can,legally or otherwise, whilst ensuring their competitors don't."

Well, of course. That's capitalism.

As for the debate: 'we' haven't become polarised, 'we' have always been polarized.

Step back a few years, and that vehement polarisation was confined to fag breaks and the pub.

The issue is not the rise of polarisation, but the rise of the ability of low-value, human opinion to be provided to a wider audience. The Web's current favour of social networking, forums, comments etc. simply brings into the light, the fact that humans are naturally predisposed to either love or hate something.

By it's very nature, extremes define the norm and vice-versa (one can not exist without the other).

The stance of good vs. evil has existed for millennia. There are still whole nations and belief systems that subscribe to this polarisation. And for those whose lives are less impacted by belief, simply transfer this natural state to other things.

The only way to stop such polarisation is for everyone in the world to get along nicely and be considerate of others. But then, this would arguably staunch growth and imagination and result in a very boring world.

What astounds me more, is the effort people will go to, to bemoan such natural polarisation, rather than go out and do something else instead.

For the record, I use Windows PCs, Macs and Linux boxes. I have a (very simple) Nokia phone for calls/texts and an iPod touch for music (it's pretty). I listen to the radio, watch TV and read books.

I like to think I'm not polarised, until someone offers me gnat's piss lager rather than a full bodied

ale. Inexcusable!

Sun sat sends stunning solar snap

Melvin Meatballs

Truly Amazing

It's images such as these that make being an atheist so easy.

The sheer power and beauty of nature, captured with big, shiny toys produced by a group of long-evolved globules of primordial soup.

Beleiving in supernatural beings is just lazy and unimaginitive in comparison.

Tories drop opposition to UK.gov DNA plans

Melvin Meatballs

I'm harder than you. So there!

I just love the wash-up.

It's such fun seeing the playground antics.

LHC particle-punisher in record 7 TeV hypercollisions

Melvin Meatballs
Thumb Up


That is all.

Victorinox offers hackers £100,000 challenge

Melvin Meatballs


Machetes, RIPA induced profit and more point's of law than I can shake a stone-from-a-horses-hoof-tool-thing at.

And there was me just thinking it looked quite pretty !

Facebook users warned over stalk-my-profile scam

Melvin Meatballs

Dilemma of responsibility

Personally, I stopped using Facebook a number of months ago. Mostly because I got fed up of the utter nonsense my 'friends' kept sending about how cute their cat was, or how they couldn't be bothered to do the ironing.

But my dilemma comes with regards my kids. Thankfully, they are young enough that with the oldest being 10, I can still use the 'not appropriate' argument and ignore the 'but Jack has it' retorts.

But with their increasing use of the internet for fun, news (FirstNews readers for a long time - wonderful, wonderful newspaper, and online content) and homework research, they are more often dipping toes into the sometimes troubled waters of the web.

My original philosophy ran similar to the, 'if people are stupid, let them take the consequences' attitude, but put that simply is just lazy. The diametric idea of censorship and control has a beautiful history of simply not working. So what happens to social responsibility?

This inevitably brings it back to 'education'.

As Anonymous Coward (0945) states, we (the El Reg Commentards) clearly have the requisite technical knowledge and long-nurtured, bitter cynicism to see facebook, twatter et al for what they are, and know to take the requisite precautions (or simply feign not to use it, then spend beer o'clock wittering about how crap it is).

But there will always be those who simply do not comprehend what they are doing; and for the moment, my kids are in that group. For them, the innocence of childhood still sees wonders everywhere, and to stifle this is to deny them simplistic joy that us grown ups have so often lost to the mundanity of daily life and taxes.

Thankfully, with guidance, direction and the occasional leap across the room to close a browser auto-redirected to BigDicksTightChicks, I can give them freedom without unrealistic dictates. My dilemma of responsibility is solved.

Now we just have to teach tolerance, understanding and self awareness to the rest of the blithely idiotic world population.

Better put the kettle on then.

NASA flying car engineer shoots down Reg coverage

Melvin Meatballs


Well my Dad always refered to a hammer as a Manchester Screwdriver.

Global warming may be normal at this point in glacial cycle

Melvin Meatballs

What's the worst that can happen

Like many growing up in the 70s, I was also taught that percieved wisdom shows that the Ice Age cometh. Thankfully, due some particularily wonderful Physics and Chemistry teachers, I was also taught that science is nothing about opinion and all about fact. And that ultimately, time itself will show those facts (or their consequences) quite plainly.

Either the Ice Age will come as (originally) predicted, or it won't. There's sod all that even the huge populace of advanced apes can effectively do about it.

There is sooooooo much that we petty insignificant earthlings know about the universe, that there's no hope in hell of achieving anything more than a good-guess on our rock's climate.

And that good-guess can only be achieved through observation of the facts, and interpretation based on testing hypotheis'.

If we can get to a point where even our much criticised MPs can say "hang on a minute, your scientific methods are a bit iffy", then we are a long way from ever achieving a realistic, scientific based consensus.

It is pointless to be pro, or anti, climate change theories. It is only worthwhile understanding that the wost that can happen is a severe depopulation of some species, including the arrogant apes that think so highly of themselves. Anything else is a bonus.

So stop bleating and start enjoying life.

And if you really want to make a difference. Go become a resarch scientist, fix the bad peer-review and hope you manage to stumble on the answer before you die.

Red Hat sponsors open source religion

Melvin Meatballs

A fascinating insight into the mids of the deluded

Either I'm getting way too cynical, or the need for selective culling of the human race is getting stronger.

Starting with anyone who thinks that tinkering with a bit of publicly accessible programming-code gives them ANY insight into solving anything other than typos.

US makes travellers go online, before getting onboard

Melvin Meatballs

We went on holiday to America..

I didn't know they had border control there. The children were startled!


Mine's the one with Radio4 schedules in the pocket.

Discrimination warning over airport body scanners

Melvin Meatballs

Privacy madness

So they already use identity profilling for the daily list of pull-outs from the streaming throngs of air travellers. The change in the list to be checked derives from both the changes in probable concealment used, and the speed (and hence volume) of processing.

It is cynical implication from the EHRC that this change will infringe privacy and hence implies that the current profiling and firm-tactile-pat-down-emtpying-of-pockets-etc does NOT infringe privacy?

So someone patting your arse is OK, but looking at a grainy-picture of it isn't?

"but they can see your genitals too..", the privacy freaks cry. Well we all look pretty similar naked given we are all of the same species. What about the poor sod that has to look at you. An horrendous job with long-term therapy costs for flab-blinded customs officials.

If you are so uptight about the thought of someone seeing a vague outline of your body, then stay at home. Don't go on holiday, complain about your 'rights' at the airport then get to the beach and flash your flesh in the mistaken impression that you have something worth showing.

Brit firm aims to make airport perv scans obsolete

Melvin Meatballs

Think of the children

I've yet to see the suggestion that ne'er do wells will simply recruit (or forcibly use) children to hide explosives. If, as seems, children will not be bodyscanned, they are then the ideal carrier.

Watford council punts parents from playground

Melvin Meatballs

Free the children

As with many posts here, I was also brought up in an era where we spent most of our non-school or non-dragged round the shops to get relacement school clothes, outside in all weathers playing. And yes, we got hurt, and yes wounds healed. And yes we got a mild ear-bashing if our parents had to take us to casualty at 5pm just when dinner was ready.

Now as a parent, I encourage my kids to do the same. Simple boundaries, well enforced (be back by 5pm for food - yes you can tell the time dear, and if you forget your watch, just ask someone in the park. No dear, not everyone in life is a paedo, most people are quite normal. No, don't ask a policeman dear, they'll arrest me for letting you out of my site)

And whaddya know. I now have 3 kids who can ride bikes, climb trees and run fast enough to get away from shopkeepers when they've stole some penny sweets. Sad thing is, that in a small primary school of 120 kids, they are 3 of about 10 that get this privelege.

And when asking other parents why they don't do the same... They simply lack the confidence because they've been brainwashed. So at weekends we regularily have 6-10 kids round to play. Seems as though the brainwashing doesn't prevent other parents from dumping thier kids on us to get that freedom. Odd really, because none of them asked me to be CRB checked. Nor, incidentally, did I need to be when I ran the PTA, nor even when I volunteered at the school for the 6 months I was unemployed.

Atheists smite online God poll

Melvin Meatballs

Standard advice to all...

Don't ask a question unless you are prepared to get an answer you don't want to hear!

Brother creates direct retinal imaging specs

Melvin Meatballs
Thumb Up

Waiting for the next step

All lovely stuff. Your own personal HUD.

Add a GPS and conect to the web via smartphone and 'they' can start to stream location based ads straight to your eyes.

But I want the one that just hardwires straight to the brain instead of all that archaic plastic stuff resting on your nose.

Man posed as teen lesbian to snare girl's nude photos

Melvin Meatballs

Think of the porn stars..

Now, I'll admit I've not read *all* the comments, but one thing that continually springs to mind in all these cases is the assignment of an arbitrary age of legal and moral acceptability. Not so long ago (in terms of 'modern' developed human society) it was quite acceptable for 13 year old girls to be married off to bare children. There is even an argument that this was necessary in terms of human reproduction as people lived shorter lives and hence needed to reporduce as early as possible in order to guarantee viable offspring. It is only the subsequent readjustment of the socially accepted age of defining an 'adult' that makes a similar sexual encounter today illegal and protested by most to be immoral.

And for those that comment on the abhorrence of pre-pubescent shenanigans, please explain the perfectly morally acceptable fact that so many men spout an open and lustful preference for a shaven pubic area. The primary visual difference between a sexually mature (adult=legal) and sexually immature (minor=illegal) female. The issue, as with life in general, is never clear-cut.

I have 3 kids. Love them all and openely educate them on all matters to help them ENJOY being children.Children learn through question and experimentation and are best guided by clearly defined (and enforced) boundaries that allow freedom to question and experiment. Despite the fact that my kids are young enough to still beleive I have eyes in the back of my head, you CAN NOT monitor them all-the-time and everywhere. And SHOULD NOT. Educate them well (not scare) and support them when things go wrong.

And if you think that the neighbour's 15 year old daughter really is quite stunningly gorgeous, with fine breasts of the sort that your loving wife lost years ago, please be assured you are quite normal.

Greens more likely thieves and liars, says shock study

Melvin Meatballs

It's not easy being green

Heard about this on Radio 4 first.

Rather fluffly psyche research that has it's merits for media sterotyping, but not much more (as with much psyche research).

True, hard evidential science where you can see the real physical effects gives better insights, but as the brain is so damned complex, the likelyhood of geting any real hard evidence to predict an outcome is sheer fantasy.

This also applies to climate change. The system of the earth's climate is likewise so damned complex that even the best scientific modelling becomes woefully inaccurate over even a short time period. This was aptly shown on a simplistic level with the whole 'barbecue summer' debacle.

So, whilst being green is certainly fashionable, I'm yet to be truly convinced that carbon-emmiting armgedon awaits us. Especially as we're more likely to waste the human race with super-evolving viruses or petty wars, well before middle England gets too toasty, or flooded with polar ice-melt.

So, why do I have LPG and other 'green' paraphenalia? Simply because it is funded to my benefit. I have 5 mouths to feed, halving my car fuel bill is just plain financial common sense.

So perhaps I am a theiving. From the government purse at least. But at least I feel smug enough that if a 'progresive' government wants to decide how society is ruled, then I can play their game when it benefits me to do so.

Women spending more time at work - but less time working

Melvin Meatballs

survey gestation times

"research showed that over the last nine months", a new breed of time keeping corporate clone was born. Male of course.

BBC devs Doctor Who movie script

Melvin Meatballs

It may be low-rent stuff but it doesn't change anything

OK som I've always been a Who fan.

But to all those that deride the writing, effects and the pitching as a kids program... That's precisely what it's all about.

For all of use who love it, we watched it when we were kids. Just because we wear long trousers now and have seen better stuff, doesn't mean that Auntie has done a bad job. Just that a lot of people are too old, cynical and nostalgic to see it through a child's uncomplicated eyes.

It's simple, unadulterated childish pleasure. And I'm glad I can still enjoy it for what it is.


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