And for those of us who travel without checked bags?
Not all of us take checked baggage. So if we're not flying on the "correct" airlines we can't even carry a Kindle? But then is a Kindle voyage of greater volume than some mobile phones?
250 posts • joined 30 Jun 2009
I think that the real problem lies when service providers are forced not merely to serve members of the LBGT community but to serve them in a manner which involves promoting the views of the LBGT community. It is one thing obliging a baker to sell a wedding cake to anyone who is willing to purchase it -- but it is another matter to compel the same baker to produce a wedding cake decorated so as to promote gay marriage. Or for that matter to produce for satanists a cake promoting satanism.
Perhaps it's a good thing that Apple have taken the position they do -- owning Apple products has always been largely an image statement. -- now ownership of Apple products involves an element of promotion of the views of the LBGT movement.
Smart meters COULD be in the interests of the customer, in situations where the meter is in a lockfast location and it is difficult or inconvenient for the customer to arrange access for meter reading. But in the present set-up, if the customer changes supplier, the former supplier can -- and British Gas does -- refuse remote access to the data.
Apparently the credit card companies charge retailers considerably more if they don't use 3Dsecure. On the other hand, the customer is more likely to avoid a retailer who does put the customer through the nuisance value of those bizarre credit card "security" setups. I still think that a pass number being sent by SMS each transaction is a far better way of doing things.
"Not to mention actually using a mobile phone in a mobile environment (hands-free) without having a call drop evey 2-3 minutes when the network fails to handover between cells."
If you have a half-decent car with a built-in GSM transceiver and a mobile that can use the rsap bluetooth profiile, then you won't have significant black spots even in the most remote parts of the country. Most of the upmarket cars in the VW, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Bentley and a number of other ranges have such "premium" audio systems. The sad thing is, of course, that iPhones and Windows phones can't use rsap and so can use only the handsfree feature of such audio systems -- they can't use the powerful transceiver circuits and efficient car aerial of the GSM transceiver
Had a smart meter fitted to one of our eight supplies about five year ago when we were buying our power on that supply from British Gas -- DNO is Scottish Hydro. Smart meter has a SIM connected in this instance to the Vodafone network. However (several suppliers later) the meter is still being read the old-fashioned way. This week I was phoned by some idiotic woman claiming that that meter was due to be changed and that because we were in a very remote area and they had an engineer in our area they wanted to do it now.
So much for up-to-date communications.Told her she was the one who was far away in a strange country and I wasn't going to give her any further details.
Of course there are technical solutions and there could well be opportunities for the telcos using the lower frequencies currently in use.
In rural areas of Scotland at present I have virtually 100% coverage in my car even when my phone on its own has no signal at all -- the very-powerful car receiver system links to my mobile by bluetooth. Other solutions exist for domestic and office settings.
The 40% rule in the 1979 referendum has further to be viewed against the background of a Voter's Roll fatally-flawed in more than one way and grossly inaccurate and out of date. My late mother found herself on two different electoral registers because she owned a derelict cottage which generated an entry on the Electoral Register -- she voted once -- for devolution -- and because she was on the second Electoral Register -- but wasn't allowed to vote in relation to that entry -- she was deemed to be a NO voter.
WW 2, to almost everyone but American revisionists, started on September 1, 1939.
The bombing of Pearl Harbor was on December 7, 1941, or December 8 Japanese time.
So if IBM didn't cease supplying the Nazis by the end of August 1939, they must have been supplying the Nazis during WW 2.
it's manifestly clear that the big mobile operators should be compelled to be more honest with their claimed coverage. Claimed coverage of the home addresses of 90+% of the UK population is largely irrelevant:
i) that figure, even for 2G, is a mere predictive map which is, more often than not, wildly optimistic
ii) we don't need mobile coverage nearly as much at home as we need it when we're on the move and coverage even on main roads can be very patchy
iii) there should be a legal requirement to specify coverage as a percentage of the landmass of the UK, and that coverage should be spot-checked across the landmass of the UK by an independent body.
I see no reason why site sharing should not be enforced. The owner of the site could then make a controlled but mandatory charge to other operators for use of the site and the other operators be obliged as a condition of licence to pay the site-use charge. Much of the landmass of the UK is far behind the third world in mobile access terms. China and impoverished African countries do much better.
Nuke wrote "The EU banned creosote for example. Fine for sunny climates like Spain and Italy, but I have about 500 yards of fencing to maintain in the damp Welsh hills and must now do so without creosote, and the alternatives are significantly more expensive and less effective (they are "safe", you see). OK, if you want the economics - did the EU consider the extra time it takes me to earn that extra expense (time lost from my life) compared with, probabilistically, the average shortening of my life due to creosote poisoning (assuming for the sake of argument I *can* somehow be poisoned by it?) Of course not."
I think the restrictions on creosote sales are crazy. But it doesn't mean that you can't get or use creosote. Sales of creosote are restricted, not banned. I haven't found any difficulty in buying it -- usually in 25 litre drums. And if you're not unduly worried about complying with regulations, old engine oil diluted with kerosene does much the same job. Don't drink it. Wear gloves and protective clothing so that it doesn't end up over your skin.But anyone without enough sense to take sensible precautions isn't fit to let loose in the community anyway.
Incidentally, Royal Mail have taken to opening packages containing new engine oil (perfectly legal to send by mail, though it's illegal to send old engine oil by post) and disposing of them as illegal. Did you ever hear of anyone sending OLD engine oil by post?
That may all be true, but sadly science graduates show no evidence of being any less clueless. Rigid specialisation in any subject tends to produce graduates who are clueless about the world outside their own specialisation which itself may be proceeding on unsound foundations. After all, universities receive funding only for politically-correct "scientific" research and staff are accordingly required to be politically correct.
to find anything positive to say about MS Word.
I've been word-processing since 1969 (IBM MT/ST) and have used a great many word processors over the years.
WordStar and its derivatives and clones such as NewWord worked well with the technology of the day. They did an excellent job but didn't move into the WYSIWYG era.
WordStar 2000 was a disaster area
WordPerfect 6.1 was an excellent program and successive versions have built on that foundation. Perfect it isn't, but exceptionally good and very well suited to legal documents. It can handle extensive and repeated redrafting exceptionally well and reformatting is child's play. For me, it's pretty-well replaced any need for a publishing program. The only thing I haven't been able to make it do is switch marginal indices to the outer edge of each page automatically.
As for MS Word, I've used it since v1 and I still dislike it intensely. It has workable review capabilities which are useful, but it's ability to make a mess of formatting when a document is edited repeatedly is horrendous as is its ability to get paragraph numbering mixed up on repeated edits. All too often I have to pull a Word document into WordPerfect to clean it up for some hapless Word user.
The success of Word is, I'm convinced, not based on the merit of the program, but rather on the unscrupulous use of power by Microsoft and major marketing blunders on the part of the various owners of WordPerfect.
Yes, the latest version of MS Word is on my computer and is used for reviewing documents on which I may be collaborating, but it's the current version of WordPerfect which gets used for all production of my own documents.
that I'd have anything good to say about Currys. However, facts are facts. Last October I ordered a cheapish fridge-freezer for delivery to an area which genuinely is remote. "No problem delivering; sorry we do it only on Tuesdays in that area -- would you like it next Tuesday or the Tuesday after?" They phoned before delivery. Delivery was bang on time. Two-man delivery. Took away the old appliance and the packaging of the new one. No charge for delivery or removal of old appliance etc. Price competitive. For the first time in my life I'm impressed by Currys' service on this occasion. Only fair to report recent experience.
Matt Bryant has made well the points that Turing, for all his brilliant contributions to computer science, acted very naively in calling in the police with regard to alleged actions of a homosexual lover; further that he'd have lost his security clearance anyway had he been known to be associating with female prostitutes.
There are aspects of the laws of our time which we may not like -- but if we make clear that we've been breaking them, surely we should realise that such a fact will place us in a very dangerous situation.
There's a further aspect to the Turing matter that's very strange. He was an intelligent man. He chose chemical castration. He surely had the intellect to ascertain that a known and relatively common side-effect is the development of female breasts? Every male undergoing even milder forms of hormone treatment for prostate cancer is warned that the development of breasts is a side-effect they should be aware of. Strange, then, that he should have been so upset by a predictable effect of the treatment he chose.
"If you look at a British Five Pound note today it still says "I promise to pay the bearer the sum of five pounds" (or words to that effect) and that is signed by the chief cashier of the Bank of England."
British? It's English and not legal tender in Scotland :-). Nor, of course, are any Scottish banknotes.
to evaluate the quality of the work produced by the companies to which it's outsourced? It is doubtful if there is any country the public perception of which has been so negatively affected by outsourcing as is the public perception of India.
Helpdesk and customer support units based in India seem to be remarkably consistent in that they seem to be staffed by individuals whose command of European English is limited, whose willingness to listen is almost non-existent, whose responses are consistently off a script and whose ability to resolve the problem, whatever it may be, is minimal.
It seems most unlikely that the quality of work in other areas of work outsourced to India is significantly better.
India has problems, all right. Problems in terms of the quality of the workforce. Other nations won't have to reach a very high standard in order to pick up the work now being outsourced to India.
It's very true that much of what's written on this subject is rubbish.
Yes, Turing was brilliant and a foundational figure in the development of computer science.
Yes, Turing was working during the war and thereafter on matters which related to national security.
Yes Turing was a practising homosexual.
But there's where most of what's being written goes off the rails.
* Turing was knowingly breaking the law of the time and therefore taking a risk. The fact that he was taking a risk with his sexual partners would have been equally real had he been heterosexual and associating with known prostitutes or others who might be a risk to his security clearance.
* At least on Turing's homosexual partners was a burglar
* Turing himself called the police in to act against his burglar partner
* Turing was given the choice of a nominal one-year prison sentence or a one year chemical castration. He chose a year of chemical castration. He was presumably intelligent enough to know or at least ascertain the probable short-term effects and the probability of any of these remaining after treatment stopped
* Turing's death was a considerable time after the end of his treatment
* Although the official verdict was suicide there is very considerable doubt as to whether it was actually so -- he was certainly known to be very careless about his use of poisons.
The US is a fairly large country and most East-coast US residents are not familiar with life on the West Coast and vice versa. And neither group are familiar with life in large parts of what exists in between. Most parts of the US outside the cities have no mains water supply, far less a gas supply and it's not at all unusual to find houses using electrical installations from the 1920s, done in "post and wire." In quite a few parts of the rural US it's a case of a kettle sitting on a woodburning stove, sometimes with a Kemac oil burner to cut in when the wood runs out. In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon to have magneto telephones and the whole community -- up to 99 homes on the SAME party line.
You presuppose that only 110v is available in a typical US domestic supply. In point of fact, both incoming wires are live at a potential of 110-120 volts to earth, and 220-240 volts to each other. While the 110 volt sockets and lighting circuits are wired between one of the live wires and earth, electric stoves and other high-draw appliances like air conditioners are wired across both incoming wires. There are perfectly standard sockets available for 220/240 volt appliances.
I can't say I'm all that perturbed by the decline of the high street. Each time I've taken another chunk of my business away from the high street of towns within a 50-mile radius, I've done it because of poor service, impossibility of parking or totally-exorbitant prices. And of course most businesses looked down on country-dwellers as third-class individuals who were polluting the premises by their very presence. For some of us, the internet has opened the way to shopping on a more-or-less equal playing field. Businesses providing services rather than tangible items are still there, but not operating from bricks-and-mortar premises.
there are Aussies who are stupid enough to buy Apple products.
And when it comes to the Aussie federal government, all they need to do is to ensure that Apple products are not approved for purchase for any federal government department or any project financed by them.
Paris, because surely even she knows better than to buy an Apple product.
And all too often, the seller has not exercised due care.
I've suffered credit card fraud on a couple of occasions, one of which involved my (rather improbable) purchase of a bicycle from a cycle shop on the South coast of England, the said bicycle to be delivered by carrier to Essex, while the registered address for the card was in the North of Scotland. No attempt was made to check before making delivery to an address other than that to which the card was registered.
So Ledswinger says
"One other common misconception - normal credit tariff customers can't be forced to have a smart meter. If you say no, then that's (currently) final. "
British Gas didn't ask. They simply sent some operative from Eastern Europe, with very little English, to "change the meter." That particular supply was a domestic-rate supply.
We've got one of these on one of our nine electricity supplies. They still send a meter reader to read it. They allege that since it was fitted by British Gas when they had that particular account, eon can't get the readings from British Gas. Mind you, if our experience is anything to go by, there's a serious question as to whether anyone can get any sane information of any sort out of British Gas. In any case, most suppliers make a lot of profit out of NOT reading meters but using an estimating algorithm which ensures that "estimated" charges are always entered at a notional consumption far above what they reckon the consumption to have been.
Many of us have indeed been bitten by PayPal. However it has got better over the years and nowadays usually works fairly smoothly and is reasonably understandable.
There should have been no room for such a company -- but the banks still have no way of transferring money across international borders simply, quickly and cheaply. Credit cards have become dramatically expensive where international transactions are concerned.
Convoluted "security" questions, passwords, passcodes and who knows what do nothing to endure the credit cards' online systems to the user. And who would trust a bank, anyway?
I'm still waiting for someone to come up with a really cheap and meaningful system to allow microbusinesses to receive payment by card on a face-to-face basis. It isn't there. And aren't banks the ones with whom the most up-to-date method of communication they'll accept is the fax -- invented in the century for last by one Alexander Bain, a clockmaker from Wick, Scotland?
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