* Posts by Grease Monkey

1729 posts • joined 11 Jun 2009

Nokia 5310: Retro feature phone shamelessly panders to nostalgia, but is charming enough to be forgiven

Grease Monkey

Muddy Festivals?

How I remember Glastonbury 97 (possibly the muddiest) arriving on friday and wandering round the site Nokia in hand (this was pre 3310 I think it may have been a 2191) trying to find a signal so we could meet up with our friends who'd arrived the day before and pitched the tents. Schlepping round in the mud was exhausting and when I finally found a signal mere yards from the cider bus with incredibly poor call quality I asked where they were. So bad was the call quality that I had to ask repeatedly and when they had finally understood me and I had finally understood their reply it turned out that they were about twenty yards away supping mulled cider.

Remember those days when a mobile signal outside an urban area was the exception rather than the rule? Ah nostalgia.

Brit police's use of facial-recognition tech is lawful, no need to question us, cops' lawyer tells Court of Appeal

Grease Monkey


If it has a 22% false positive rate then why are they continuing to use it? Obviously there's no figure for false negatives (how would they know) but a rate of false positives of more than 1 in 5 is something that nobody in the private sector would put up with on a product that they are paying for. So why do they continue to use it and indeed pay for it?

Well the simple answer is this. It gives them an excuse for stop and search. As such they'd probably prefer a higher rate of false positives.

The detail I'd be interested in seeing is the rate of false positives on race. And while they're at it they can add things like facial hair and glasses to the list

Tell you what though. Let's all wear face coverings to protect ourselves from covid-19 and AFR. It's a win win.

BoJo looks to jumpstart UK economy with £6k taxpayer-funded incentive for Brits to buy electric cars – report

Grease Monkey

That is a given for any Tory policy.

It's not just the have-nots subsidizing the haves (Dennis Moore? Stupid bitch, etc.) but so many of their policies are aimed at driving money from the ordinary person into the pockets of rich (Tory) business owners and share holders.

Just like Trump the Tories real idea of "the economy" is actually the strength of the stock market.

The saddest thing though is that some many "working class" (is there such a thing any more?) Tory voters thank them for these policies. This is how populist governments have always worked, by convincing the aspirational poor that they are somehow part of the club and will somehow benefit from the successes or the rich.

Grease Monkey

Re: Electric or Hybrid?

"You can buy a second hand leaf cheap.....why? because buyers are rightly VERY wary of second hand EVs (many are left with <80 mile ranges due to battery pack wear....)

Last year I was seeing 2016 leafs on sale for <£5000"

Which sounds wonderful, but as you have rightly pointed out they tend to need new battery packs the replacement cost of which is getting close to that of a new car. And 80 miles is very optimistic. Plenty of people have found the range of a brand new Leaf to be little more than that. There are plenty of stories of Leafs (Leaves?) with ranges of scarcely more than a quarter of that.

But the actual reason for my reply is this...

The discussed subsidy will as ever only apply to new cars. The government is not interested in getting money moving, because that doesn't actually significantly impact what they like to refer to as "the economy". Their idea of "the economy" is money going into the coffers of big business.

Grease Monkey

Re: Electric or Hybrid?

"The statement that the grid is "often close to burnout" is simply not true."

Nobody said anything about "burn out" and the grid has admitted that it's close to brown out often during the winter months. Brown out incidentally is where they drop voltages in order to maintain supply.

The problem is simple. The more we rely on wind and solar the bigger it will bet. In winter high pressure means two things; firstly little or no wind; secondly low temperatures. This increases demand particularly in the evenings, more heating required due to low temperatures. And of course it reduces supply, no sun in the evenings, but no wind either.

Now what the UK needs it more storage capacity. Pumped storage such as the famous "electric mountain" at Dinorwig is a brilliant solution, but that costs an awful lot of money and nobody seems to want to invest as it's not seen as a big money spinner. There were moves to import power from Europe a while ago, but I suspect any advances there will be killed off by Boris's ambition for a hard brexit.

Without investing in storage or some other renewable technology the only solution is to control demand. And one way to is of course smart devices which will not use power at peak times. I do that manually because I have solar panels, high current devices are only used when there's plenty of light around. The problem with an electric car charger is simply that most of us will need them overnight. Maybe having a timer to bring the charger in at midnight would be a start, but as one EV owning friend told me the basic charger (pretty much a cable) came with his car free. The smart charger which had such clever things as timers and rapid charging added thousands to the bill.

Grease Monkey

Electric or Hybrid?

The article doesn't make it clear whether BogJob is talking about electric cars or electric cars and hybrids, Well it seems to state electric cars, but then discusses stats for electric AND hybrid cars.

Two problems depending on the answer to this question.

If the answer is both then hybrids aren't particularly good for the environment. Depending on how and where they are driven their emissions are often similar to those of their IC equivalents and commonly not much better.

If the answer is electric only then the next big problem is what we do about generating capacity. On dark winter evenings when pressure is high the UKs grid is often close to brown out. The only way we have to fill any shortfalls in capacity is bringing extra stations on line which (whisper it) burn stuff and emit CO2. Now some may argue that we can burn renewables like waste or wood chips. The problem with these is they are not really as good as they sound. Waste might be better than burning fossil fuels, but it still releases CO2. And wood chips again sound good, but growing a tree takes years, is usually imported from abroad using a dirty heavy oil burning ship and then the CO2 it absorbed over a number of years is released into the atmosphere in seconds. Again better than fossil fuels but not by much. So we have two issues in one here. At times the only way to recharge these extra EVs will be by emitting pollution and the alternative to that will be letting the grid collapse.

And then there's the question of who benefits. If you can't afford to drive round in a car costing more than £6K then you're probably driving an older car that pollutes more heavily than a modern car and also you probably can't afford the finance on a new EV even with a £6K scrappage incentive. It's not like there are any cheap new EVs about. On the other hand if your existing car is worth more than £6K you probably won't go in for it. Why scrap your existing IC car for £6K if you can trade it in to a dealer for more? Or will it be another scheme that's open to abuse? If you're well off enough to buy a new EV then you might just go out and buy a £500 shed and then trade it in for the £6K, thus giving you a £5.5K discount on a nice new EV.

Snapping at Canonical's Snap: Linux Mint team says no to Ubuntu store 'backdoor'

Grease Monkey

Re: Bad neighbor

You didn't like Canonical so you migrated from Ubuntu to the Ubuntu based Mint? Go on then, explain the logic behind that one.

NHS contact tracing app isn't really anonymous, is riddled with bugs, and is open to abuse. Good thing we're not in the middle of a pandemic, eh?

Grease Monkey

Re: One would have throught...

Before titling a post "one would have thought" it's a good idea to actually think.

The Google/Apple approach works in practice. UK.gov are reinventing the wheel with no apparent justification. This process is not only delaying implementation, like we need more delays, but it seems to be for what can only be described as nefarious reasons.

NHS contact-tracing app is best in the world, says VMware CEO... whose company helped build it

Grease Monkey


The gubbermint have already said that they need 80% of smartphone users to use this app in order for it to be useful. They have also said that their path out of lockdown (let's not call it a roadmap because that's meaningless) relies on contact tracing. However they have also said that if the trials don't go well they may move to a decentralized solution as preferred by South Korea.

The first question to ask is a simple one: If South Korea's solution was successful (and it was) why are we re-inventing the wheel? Developing a new app has taken time and money and it's still not over as the app is still being tested.

So the follow up question would be: Users are required to proactively install an app, however the majority already have software on their phones that is tracing their every movement, why not just talk nicely to the providers of this software and ask them to just spam their users in the UK with a simple opt in prompt, would that not be a simpler solution which would reach a wider audience?

The answers to both these questions would be slightly embarrassing for UK.gov. Being as they are: 1. Dom and his team of "misfits" didn't actually bother looking at how South Korea had achieved things they just went off half cock throwing money at the problem (and surely nobody is suggesting they kept any of it). and 2. Yes.

Unfortunately nobody seems to be asking the questions. Or if they are they are not asking them loudly enough in a public enough forum. I would contact my local MP and suggest a question at PMQs but my new MP is not only a Tory who toes the Boris line in all things, but he is also almost invisible. Unlike our previous MP who was not only very contactable, but also very vocal in representing her constituents.

As for Starmer holding the "government to account" he seems to have one topic where he asks for a path out of lockdown and then when he's given one doesn't seem to be able to think of any intelligent questions.

Now that's integrity: Bloke sinks 7 beers, turns himself in. Cops weren't looking for him

Grease Monkey

Drunk enough to get arrested after 7 buds?

Either the threshold for drunk and disorderly is incredibly low in Texas or BB's tolerance of alcohol is disturbingly low.

Apple's WebKit techs declare privacy circumvention to be a security issue

Grease Monkey

Given how much Apple track their own customers this is frankly ridiculous. Basically the the stance seems to be "we will protect you from everybody but us" (Pause for maniacal laughter.)

Networking giant in hot water for selling US govt buggy spy kit? Huawei again? No, it's Cisco

Grease Monkey


"In 2009, we published a Best Practices Guide emphasizing that users needed to pay special attention to building necessary security features on top of the software they were licensing from us."

The weasel words are strong with this one.

BT adopts Ubuntu OpenStack as core brains for its 5G, fibre-to-the-premises rollout

Grease Monkey

"with very large amounts of compute"

Good to know the art of spouting meaningless shit is far from dead in the telecoms sector.

DoH! Secure DNS doesn't make us a villain, Mozilla tells UK broadband providers

Grease Monkey

Many years ago I had an end user phone me complaining that she couldn't change the DNS server settings on her workstation. I explained that being able to do so would so her machine from working because we blocked all outgoing DNS requests at the firewall other than those from the in house servers. The in house servers themselves communicating with the outside world via servers sitting in the DMZ. She told me she "needed" to be able to change her DNS settings to do her job. She wasn't a developer or similar so told her she would need to submit a business case to her manager and if that was successful management would send that in to CAB. Needless to say the business case never arrived at CAB.

I can see this technology failing in the corporate space for very similar reasons.

Imagine being charged to take a lunch break... even if you didn't. Welcome to the world of these electronics assembly line workers

Grease Monkey

Re: "the cost of which would be automatically taken from their wages"

When I was paid hourly I was only paid for the hours I worked. So that was 9am - 5:30pm, 4:30pm on Friday. With an hour lunch break that meant we were paid for 36 hours a week. The standard and legal way to calculate hourly wages in the UK.

However that's not the issue here. The issue here is that people who opted out of their lunch break were paid on the basis that they had taken it. In other words they were paid for half an hour less than they actually worked.

Another however is European law. A similar case would be interesting in the EU. IIRC the working time directive states that your employer must allow you to take a minimum of half an hour out of the first six hours, and fifteen minutes out of every subsequent three hours. Which is all good for your health. It also states that you MUST take those breaks. So if your employer rewards you for working through your lunch break in the EU then they are breaking the law. Even if you chose to work through your lunch without being asked to do so this would still be the case.

Timely Trump tariffs tax tech totally: 25 per cent levy on modems, fiber optics, networking gear, semiconductors…

Grease Monkey

Do these tariffs apply to all the "American" kit that's actually manufactured in China? You know Apple phones and the like.

Techie with outdated documentation gets his step count in searching for non-existent cabinet

Grease Monkey

Quite apart from not understanding why you'd need to deploy a new vlan for a single user I don't understand the logic of this tale.

You need a new user connecting? Well firstly you have a port on the wall. This has a port number which relates to a network cabinet. While I can understand that sometimes it's difficult to find the right cabinet due to lame labelling or dodgy documentation, I can't see why this engineer was trying to locate the cabinet by looking for a specific switch.

In cases like this the first and most important thing is the cabinet in which the end user's network port terminates. It's no good deciding that you want to connect the user to a particular switch if that switch is in the wrong cabinet.

So firstly you find the cabinet that the users port connects to. Secondly you find out which vlan(s) the use needs to connect to. Only then do you start looking for a switch to connect to.

Somebody needs to learn to use their brain rather than their feet.

'Software delivered to Boeing' now blamed for 737 Max warning fiasco

Grease Monkey

Boeing tried to bypass proper development and certification processes to get the plane into service as quickly and cheaply as possible. No amount of ridiculous excuses will change that.

The question here is whether the authorities in the US will side with them and buy the excuses. I'm pretty sure the authorities in other countries won't be as easily fooled.

Huawei, Huawei. Huawei, Huawei. Feeling hot, hot, hot: US threatens to cut UK from intel sharing over Chinese tech giant

Grease Monkey

So the US say we shouldn't use Huawei kit even though they haven't yet presented any credible evidence that Huawei have carried out any espionage on behalf of the Chinese government.

What's the alternative?

Oh that's right, they want us to buy kit from US manufactures. You know that would be the same USA that has a track record of spying on its allies.

And of course the fun part is that much of that "American" kit is manufactured in China.

America's anti-hacking laws are so loose, even Donald Trump Jr broke them. So, what do we do about it?

Grease Monkey

The one thing that the whole sorry Trump saga has proved is that the US political system is a joke.

The President has too much power, the famed system of checks and balances is inadequate and the idea of presidential pardons actually encourages corruption.

Grease Monkey

Re: It is only sometimes a defense

"Some crimes require intent or malice be proven, others you are guilty from committing the act."

I don't think anybody could doubt for a moment that Junior's actions have often been malicious, but make has no bearing here. The question raised by the OP was whether ignorance of the law could be a defence. It's perfectly possible and no doubt common to carry out actions with malicious intent while being ignorant of the law. Which is of course why it's so important that ignorance of the law should never be considered a defence.

Grease Monkey

What concerns me most here is that Mueller was supposed to be investigating, but it seems that he was also the one b making decisions on prosecution. This is surely not a good idea.

An investigator should present their findings to somebody else to decide whether prosecution is warranted. The rain for this is simple, if the investigator is making decisions on prosecution then this will surely influence the content of the report.

Chinese dev jailed and fined for posting DJI's private keys on Github

Grease Monkey

Re: He said..?

Presumably the quote from Twitter was originally in his native language and was translated by somebody with a better command of English.

Scare-bnb: Family finds creeper cams hidden in their weekend rental by scanning Wi-Fi

Grease Monkey

The moral of this story?

Don't bother reporting your concerns to Airbnb without also reporting them to the mainstream media.

Are you sure you've got a floppy disk stuck in the drive? Or is it 100 lodged in the chassis?

Grease Monkey

My personal favourite from the era of the floppy disk comes from the time I spent supporting an accounts and payroll suite. In the eighties remote support was not a luxury we could afford so we often had to travel to the customer premises. But some customers data files were small enough to fit on a floppy disk, indeed many customers used machines without hard disks. These machines had to drives and we always taught customers how to make backup copies of all their data and program disks.

We tended to teach grandfather, father, son backups. This was usually sufficient if data became corrupted. We would tell the customer to return to the previous backup. We seldom had an incident where at least one of the backups wasn't good, even if the customer had to re-input a few days worth of data.

On occasion however there would be a situation where even the backups were corrupt. The file format was a linked list and on more than one occasion I had to read those lists in a text editor and fix the links by hand. Often I could achieve this without the loss of any data.

One day I got a call from a customer reporting an error message suggesting a corruption in the linked list. She confirmed that the computer had been switched off without saving the data. This made things simple, it should be a case of going to the most recent backup.

I asked her to try the backup copy, but she admitted that she hadn't made a backup copy since she'd started work at the company as nobody had ever showed her how. So the must recent backup was several months out of date.

I should at this point have realised that my next suggestion was unlikely to have the desired outcome. I informed her that I could probably fix the problem, but the cost of my traveling to their office to carry out the repair may be prohibitive. I could however repair the data if she were to send me a copy of her data disk.

The very next day an envelope arrived containing, as you've probably guessed, a photocopy of a five and a quarter inch floppy disk.

Grease Monkey

Re: One, OK, hundred, I have my doubts

I'm with you on that. She was saving to c: instead of a: because it was faster? But surely the only reason to save to the floppy drive is to make the file portable. So this endeavour must have failed in the first attempt when the floppy wasn't available to transport the file elsewhere.

At best therefore I suspect that this tale has been somewhat embellished.

ZX Spectrum Vega+ 'backer'? Nope, you're now a creditor – and should probably act fast

Grease Monkey

Intelligent? On what do you base this?

Certainly the statements and actions of several of the people involved over the last few years would seem to imply pretty much the opposite.

Most academic qualifications only provide evidence of hard work and perhaps average intelligence.

Hungover this morning? Thought 'beer before wine and you'll be fine'? Boffins prove old adage just isn't true

Grease Monkey

Never had a hangover. Even after a two gallon session. I think you're all making it up.

LibreOffice patches malicious code-execution bug, Apache OpenOffice – wait for it, wait for it – doesn't

Grease Monkey


"Before attempting to guess which app has yet to be patched, consider that..."

...we told you in the best headline.

Techie finds himself telling caller there is no safe depth of water for operating computers

Grease Monkey

Water cooling?

Worked on any number of data centres back in the nineties and never came across one that was water cooled. Indeed you would always be careful to ensure that any cooling plant was outside the data center itself so that hot air was drawn out of the computer hall and cool air blown back in through ducting. Generally speaking cooling plant has condensate to drain. Even then you had moisture sensors in various locations below and above floor level. While it would be preferable to run power overhead in a data centre I came across an awful lot where power was run below the floor.

So in short that story puzzles me. Even if it used water in the cooling why were the pipes in the computer hall itself? Why were there no moisture alarms screaming the place down way before it got to that stage? And how had water do enough to wade through not already caused an almighty short? Oh and if there was a water cooling system why was there such a large volume of water involved.

Apple: You can't sue us for slowing down your iPhones because you, er, invited us into, uh, your home... we can explain

Grease Monkey

Am I missing something here?

Apple say that if this is a matter of contact rather than trespass? But surely the description of the update which promised to improve performance and lifetime constitutes a contract. I wouldn't give an Apple product houseroom so I don't know for sure but most updates have a button saying something like agree and install. That sounds pretty much like a contract to me.

So what if Apple get these lawsuits thrown out? All the complainants need to do is bring new lawsuits for beach of contract. And they can actually cite Apple's argument in this case as evidence.

Staff sacked after security sees 'suspect surfer' script of shame

Grease Monkey

Back in my days in the public sector I used to manage the corporate proxies. HR received reports of suspect surfing, not just porn obviously, but other proscribed categories and also excess use of none work related sites. From these reports HR would decide who needed further action, from verbal to written warnings to full on dismissal.

After one suspect tried to claim that the sites she had been viewing were not what their URLs suggested it was decided that all such sites should be viewed by HR before action was taken, in order to weed out the false positives. HR came up with a protocol for these viewings, a member of HR would come up to IT where they would kick themselves in a meeting room with a member of the IT team to view a sample of the suspect sites. As three administrator of the proxies I was nominated IT person.

As I said the suspect sites weren't always porn, but they often were. All the members of the HR team we female and I'm not. Furthermore one of the ladies from HR was married to a member of my team. As such I sometimes had to go and kick myself in a meeting room with the wife of Pune of my team and look view porn. This was the nineties so we're not talking 4K video, but porn nonetheless. Needless to say this did not go down well with my colleague.

Have to use SMB 1.0? Windows 10 April 2018 Update says NO

Grease Monkey

Nope. I've thought about it long and hard, but I can't think of a good reason to run SMB 1.0

Visa Europe fscks up Friday night with other GDPR: 'God Dammit, Payment Refused'

Grease Monkey

Visa never tire of telling us that their cards are more convenient than cash. So maybe they can tell us when the last time was that cash stopped working.

'Clive, help us,' say empty-handed ZX Spectrum reboot buyers

Grease Monkey

TBH I can't believe it's taken so long for things to escalate this far. It's been pretty clear that they unlikely to deliver for quite some time.

Facebook back in court fighting claims it nicked British data centre IP

Grease Monkey

It seems hopelessly naive to discuss your IP with another (much bigger) company in this way.

We keep seeing broadly similar things happening again and again. For example writers discuss the idea for a movie with a studio and a couple of years later that studio releases what seems to be a very familiar film. Should the writers sue what happens is that the studio will offer an out of court settlement tied up with an NDA. Should the writers refuse the settlement the studio will simply outlawyer the writers and probably win in court by stating that the idea for the movie was only broadly similar, that there were lots of differences or that this movie was already in the planning stage at the time they spoke to the writers and this is why they rejected the writer's idea.

The difference between the movie idea and a datacentre cooling system isn't that much really. The only real difference being that you might be more likely to be able to prove patent breach in the application of the cooling idea, much harder to prove copyright breach in terms of a movie idea once it has been turned into a full blown script.

Indiegogo to ailing ZX Spectrum reboot firm: End of May... or we call the debt collector

Grease Monkey

The ZX Spectrum Next thing looks like a much more promising project anyway. I think the Vega thing is so late it's dead in the Easter now. Don't know why more people haven't sites for their money back.

Crowdfunding small print binned as Retro Computers Ltd loses court refund action

Grease Monkey

Re: On the other hand

"It's venture funding, not retail."

So why did they use the word "order" then. If it's venture funding then the word would be would be "investment". The word "order" does not merely imply this is retail, it states it as clearly is possible without using the word "retail" itself.

The reason Levy is terrified had nothing to do with his cock and everything to do with the fact that this sets a precedent for everybody who placed and order to sue. And of course this precedent having been set it will be so much easier for every subsequent action. They should subbing fly through the small claims court.

Expect the next story to be that the company has filed for voluntary liquidation. As such if you are one of the poor said who placed an order with these cowboys you'd better get your claim in quickly.

Stop us if you've heard this one: Apple's password protection in macOS can be thwarted

Grease Monkey


"Not a bug IMHO"

So if it's not a bug it must be be there by design. Those are the only two possibilities. So you'really suggesting Apple created this feature deliberately?

You must have an even lower opinion of Apple than I do.

Or maybe you are so IT illeterate that you don't actually know what the word bug means.

Oi, force Microsoft to cough up emails on Irish servers to the Feds, US states urge Supremes

Grease Monkey

Regardless of the legal arguments one has to wonder how much money has been wasted on this case rather than just applying for a warrant in an Irish court.

Of course the reason that they didn't choose the cheaper course of action is that they want a precedent to be set. However this could be a dangerous precedent. It could be harmful to US business interests abroad.

Brit film board proposed as overlord of online pr0nz age checks

Grease Monkey

It's been said before, but the likes of The Pirate Bay are blocked by UK ISPs, but people continue to use them thanks to VPNs and proxies. Why will this be any different?

Another case where the government will be seen to be doing something while in reality doing nothing.

Pro tip: You can log into macOS High Sierra as root with no password

Grease Monkey

For the apologists.

Other OSs do it too. So what? Apple and their fans pride themselves on being secure by default. A blank root password is secure by default?

It requires physical access so it's not a vulnerability. It doesn't matter how often I hear this one it makes me laugh. Somebody with physical access can access all your data and that's not a vulnerability? What exactly do you consider a vulnerability then?

You can fix it by setting a root password. You shouldn't have to fix it, how the hell does a "secure” OS manage to install without setting a root password?

It's still more secure than Windows. And? It's not just Apple and Microsoft you know. Neither of the two OS's I'm using these days would allow you to install without setting a password on the root account.

This simple little fuck up shows that Apple's QC can be truly appalling and their attitude to security is not all its cracked up to be.

Never mind fanbois, you still have your badge.

Grease Monkey

Hang on, where are all the fanbois telling us this isn't really a vulnerability?

Abolish the Telly Tax? Fat chance, say MPs at non-binding debate

Grease Monkey

Sounds far too complicated anyway. The last I heard at least 20% of people have no home internet connection. Surely is reasonable to assume that not all of the 20% have Sky, but that most of those people still have a TV. So what happens there then? Some sort of complicated system where people with an internet connection or Sky pay their their ISP or Sky but those that don't still have to pay a licence fee?

Why make the system much more complicated than it actually is?

A simpler system would be to fund the BBC from the treasury (ie through taxes) and introduce a rebate system for those who don't need a TV licence. After all the number of people who don't need a licence is much smaller than those who do.

Linus Torvalds on security: 'Do no harm, don't break users'

Grease Monkey

Sounds a bit too Microsoft to me

It's always been the Microsoft way to dawdle over fixing security holes that they *think* aren't known about in the wild.

Remember a few years back when Google went public on a flaw because Microsoft were doing nothing to fix it weeks after Google had informed MS of the existence of the flaw?

Microsoft have actually admitted in the past four knowing about security flaws, but not fixing them as the were no known exploits in the wild.

It sounds to me that for all his rationalising Torvalds is heading down the same dangerous route.

Aww: Apple won't be HomePod for Christmas

Grease Monkey

"reinvent music in our homes”

When other companies got to market first with products that actually worked. Obviously a definition of the word reinvent of which I was heretofore unaware. Except of course the Apple faithful will believe this shite. I can't recall the last time Apple released something innovative, but the fanbois and goirls believe all things Apple are innovative because they get their information direct from Apple. And as for Apple making a better quality product than the competition, maybe once they did, but not for a long time.

Help desk declared code PEBCAK and therefore refused to help!

Grease Monkey

I used to run a help desk where I instituted a system of three letter codes on ticket resolutions. These were used in analysis to try to make the service more efficient. Among these codes were the U codes where the cause of the ticket being raised was found to be the user themselves. PICNIC tickets as we used to call them. Problem In Chair Not In Computer.

Among these were:

USR - user self resolved.

UGA - user given advice.

UTR - user training required.

The former usually meant the user figured out what they were doing wrong without being told. The second that the desk told the user what they were doing wrong. The last that the user wouldn't take advice and needed to be referred for corrective action.

Finally there was the ultimate sanction. UFW. I invented this one for situations where the user was beyond redemption. Where nothing amount of training or advice could help. This created a flash against the user account so help desk staff could be warned what they were dealing with as soon as they answered the phone. When questioned by senior management I did hurriedly think of something for the F and W to officially stand for. I no longer recall what those two official words were.

Originally and to all the help desk staff they always meant one thing.

Fuck. Wit.

Take off, ya hosers! Silicon Valley court says Google can safely ignore Canadian search ban

Grease Monkey

As usual the US courts expect their own decisions to be enforced globally, but not the reverse. If the US courts think this is reasonable then isn't it about time the rest of the world started to ignore US patent and copyright rulings?

Tell the public how much our tram tickets cost? Are you mad?

Grease Monkey

The lights had probably gone.

So had the stairs.


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