Why are there flat rings, instead of a doughnut shaped cloud of debris?
1784 posts • joined 18 Feb 2010
My neighbours have a rather nice Lenovo Ideapad 110S. It only has a 32GB SSD so of course Windows 10 got stuck in an endless "update" nightmare. It also has a 64GB micro SD card but Windows update can't see it. It is possible to make Windows use the SD card for updates but it wants to delete everything on the card. There is only about 5GB of data on the card so Windows is totally incapable of using over 50GB of free space without screwing everything up :(
The good news is that the Lenovo is now running Linux Mint 18.04 and everything works* out of the box.
If you want a cheap netbook I can recommend this device. Just dump Windows and you're good to go.
*before installing I did a bit of searching and it seemed that I might need a USB to RJ45 dongle. In fact you don't need one, but after the initial install from a USB stick Linux Mint will do a rather large update. (about 30 minutes via Wi-Fi)
Two days ago I was asked to help setup a friend's new smart TV. As I don't own a TV I may not be the best person for this sort of advice. The TV was connected via wifi and I searched for a browser. As the TV had inbuilt Chromecast I was expecting to find the Chrome browser. All I found was something called Vewd.
I read the EULA which had to be accepted before it would work. It said something like this: "We will install Vewd and also some third party software, we accept no liability for this software". It did not say what this software was but I'm guessing that it's spyware. I declined their kind offer.
Then when I tried to pair my phone it wanted access to my my contacts and browsing history. Feck that! <goes back to my cave>
At the first funeral that I ever attended I was the grave digger, pall bearer and mourner. For the sake of his family I'll be vague with the location.
I was in a foreign country working as a gardener and just after lunchtime was told to go and dig a grave. A priest on holiday had died and due to local religious practices had to be buried before sunset, it was a Friday. Another chap and I set to digging but there were many large stones in the soil, so by the time the coffin arrived the grave was only four feet deep.
The next problem was that we only had one short piece of rope. I jumped into the grave and lowered down one end of the coffin whereupon everyone reverently stood back a pace. As his wife was there I did not want to stand on the coffin to escape the grave, it does not look good! I had to ask someone to help me out.
According to the article on Phys.org
"Ghez believes all six objects were binary stars—a system of two stars orbiting each other—that merged because of the strong gravitational force of the supermassive black hole. The merging of two stars takes more than 1 million years to complete, Ghez said."
I had to go to a client whose printer was acting up. It was one of those high speed line printers in a sound proof box. It did not have a settings screen rather it would print out the menu on a new page. Getting down the menu tree wasted about 10 pages of fan-fold. Each time I put it back online it would spit out reams of paper. It sat in a very small room and I was getting rapidly buried in paper. The server was in the chief accountants office, I did not know enough about *nix to start messing with that. Eventually I rang the printer's maker in the USA.
A nice chap told me how to get to the hex dump page, identify what was being sent and alter the printer's configuration.
I may have posted this before but it may be relevant.
When McD arrived in the UK there was much press coverage. At the time we had Wimpy bars where you had stainless steel cutlery and seats that were horizontal. Normally if you open a restaurant you serve big portions at a cheap price for at least a month. I went to McD, it was shit. I have no idea why anyone would eat there. Later on the only times that I eat at McDs was if it was the only outlet open in the town that I had arrived in late at night. Still shit!
Can we have the DOUBLE FAIL icon please?
It's fairly obvious that Putin got Trump elected, a decision that he may come to regret.
I would not like to be a member of the USA's armed services at this time. To deflect attention from his crimes Trump will start a war, most likely with North Korea.
Many thousands of people will die, this will not end well.
I am not a political animal but I wake up every day hoping to hear that Trump has been struck by lightning while playing golf. How ironic would that be?
Now my only pleasure in life will be a chlorinated chicken sandwich :( /s
I came home drunk one night and noticed something glowing red by the gate. (there's a transformer on a pole by the gate) Ah! it must be glow worms I drunkenly decided and went to bed. (actually there are no glow worms in this country!) The next day my neighbours told me that they were getting shocks from various appliances. So I went next door with my multimeter to do some tests. I discovered that if I spat on the stone floor my meter would read 100V between the spit and the stove! (this stone house was built in 1900).
Now I remembered the glow worm and went to (investigate?) the gate. There's shire wire* fencing running near the pole and where two wires crossed I found a bit that looked blackened. When I pressed the wires together with my thumb they started to buzz and glow slightly. Oddly I did not get a shock.
The cause was crows using fencing wire to build a nest on top of the transformer. Normality was restored after the linesmen fished it off with a fibre glass pole.
*agricultural wire fencing
I don't do "social media" but when I tell people that I never see adverts on YouTube they look at me in disbelief.
When first activating a BT broadband connection you're asked if you want to see adult content. They could also ask if you'd like to see any adverts. As for Facebook users, I'm afraid that they're completely screwed.
P.S. I'm not a BT customer.
It is estimated that there are 24 million feral pigs in Australia. A couple of hunters that I worked with in FNQ told me that pigs were more dangerous than snakes, spiders and crocs. If you're in the bush without a gun and disturb a pig you will have to climb a tree and be prepared to stay up there for a long while :(
If you are fitting metal back boxes then I suggest you put silicon grease on the threads of the socket screws. I had to trace a fault in an old stone house lined with plasterboard and most of the screws were rusted into the back boxes. It depends on how damp your walls are. Humans emit a lot of water vapour!
I maintain a small charities' web-site. I recently received a series of "invoices" from a spoofed royal.gov.uk address. If *anybody* sends me a Word document it gets uploaded to virustotal.com and yes they got about 30 positive hits for nasty stuff. Having said that, I only use Libre Office on Ubuntu so I probably could have have opened them without being infected.
You want AI? You want robots? Send three robots to the Moon, if one were to break it could be mended by the other two. Also send a big box of spares and the equipment to build a human habitat. It seems foolish to expect astronauts to somehow build their own habitat when machines could have done it for them prior to their arrival.
On arrival if they find one robot with three heads and a structure similar to the leaning tower of Pisa be afraid, very afraid.
Working in the professional audio recording industry I was told to use Isopropyl alcohol for the metal parts (heads etc.) and Methylated spirit for the rubber parts (pinch wheel). I did that for years on both audio and video cassette recorders, it always worked.
A while ago I blocked Google's access to my phone's microphone. I started to get error messages, "Google Play not working" or something similar. Yesterday I finally found out why. A new error message told me that unless I gave Google Play access to my microphone it would not work. I declined their kind offer. I was under the impression that Google Play was a shop, maybe I'm wrong, so why does it need a microphone?
I went up the BT tower when it still had a public gallery. I still have the brochure somewhere, what impressed me was the size of the power feed bus-bars. IIRC (unlikely) they had about 10 (now I'm guessing) 2ft width x 1inch thickness aluminium bars stacked so that there was a 1 inch gap between the bars. (Imagine a 90° change of direction of the bars)
A friend of mine lived adjacent to the tower and when the IRA bombed it, pieces were raining down on his house. He thought that the tower was going to fall on his house. A case of brown pyjamas maybe :(
Fun fact number two:
A WW2 aeroplane nerd told me that at the start of WW2 there were 20 anti-aircraft guns guarding the Scapa Flow and only six guns for the whole of London.
Fact number three:
I hate BT and will have nothing to do with them, bunch of (read the small print) crooks.
About a week after installing a Win95 PC in an office we got a call back. It took me a few minutes to work out the problem, they'd set white text on a white background.
Back in the office another 95 fail was hitting "Print" before saving your work. The printer light would flash and after a long wait Windows would crash and nothing got printed :(
Just had the 911 challenge people here today. Their next fund-raising tour (in a couple of years) will be in an electric Porsche, starting in Iceland.
I think it's going to be called the Shipping Forecast tour.
These people are serious money raisers, if you have a boat then get involved.
When I'm not using my DVB-T dongle* for software defined radio I can plug it into a headless Pi3 running TVheadend**. With the Pi connected to my router I can watch TV over wifi. I don't own a normal TV so it's laptops all the way.
Another Pi is running Pi-Hole and will never be switched off :) I'll buy a Pi4 when I think of a use for one. Any ideas?
TVheadend can also be used as a tuner for Kodi but I have not tried it. Might be a good project for people with kids.
See here: https://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=91716&pid=699753&highlight=tvheadend
*Nooelec Nesdr (cheaper dongles are available)
Yesterday I helped an elderly neighbour with his Win10 box. He had taken the free "upgrade" option but it was slow as hell. It took 10 minutes to boot up and Opera about 5 minutes to load. In short, unusable!
I eventually got it to shutdown and booted Linux Mint from USB stick. When I tried to mount the HDD an error message said that the drive had the Hibernate flag set. So I booted back into Windows and checked that Hibernate was disabled, it already was. Under that option is something like "Wake from alerts" and I disabled it. Then used the disk utility to shrink the Widows partion by about half of the unused space. That created 45GB of unallocted space.
Installed Linux Mint in the free space and not only was Mint super fast but Windows was now working as expected on a dual core machine with only 2Gb RAM.
How did that happen?
In London I have a bicycle that is worth about £10. I lock it with a padlock that's worth about £3 and probably could be opened with a nail file. No-one has ever tried to steal it. I also don't wear rings or jewellery and my phone cost £99. If I were to be mugged I'd give them the phone. The money I save by not insuring it will pay for a new phone.
My motorbike was so beat-up it looked like it would not start. I only padlocked it because I lived on top of a hill and did not want some teenager going for a free wheel to the bottom. (My car was also beat-up and *big*, even the black cabs did not mess with me!)
Growing up in a big city, if you're smart, you learn to not flaunt your money.
I have little sympathy towards people getting mugged for their £25000 Rolex watch. How stupid would it be to get killed for a piece of gaudy bling.
I'm typing on a Lenovo B590 that cost £140 and is in mint condition. It runs Ubuntu 16.04 and everything works, it got security updates yesterday. If I'm desperate I can boot it into Windows 8.1
I must admit to feeling sorry for the people in coffee shops behind their illuminated Apple logos. It's like advertising the fact that you don't know how to operate a computer. OK this is a generalisation but I'm sure that it applies to the majority of them.
↓↓↓↓ Please form an orderly queue for the downvote button :)
I bought a mint condition Toshiba NB100 (one of the original XP netbooks) for £30 and put Xubuntu on it. Everything worked OOTB! Later on I put a cheap SSD in it and it's a very usable piece of kit. The battery is knackered but I've just seen a battery on eBay for £9! Also today on eBay some NB100s for between £70 and £80. (rip-off!)
Of course I would never dream of installing macchanger on it and hanging around coffee shops wearing my Groucho Marx disguise.
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