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42 posts • joined 12 Mar 2011
Given the lack of balloons in Roman times (or helium either but never mind) an alternative metaphor might an inflated bladder. It has the added bonus of alluding to the after effects of a few celebratory drinks.
Google Translate then suggested "to the stars on an inflated bladder" becomes
vesica inflata ad astra
I can't read these asteroid mining stories without thinking of this book...
Aliens launch a "dinosaur killer" asteroid at the earth and destroy India. (Except there is no need for alien intervention given the stupidity of humans.) Thinking about it though - perhaps the dinosaurs were space-faring and did themselves in?
Desktop PCs in the enterprise? Really? Instead go thin client to give users a follow-me-anywhere, server-based virtual desktop experience. MS Windows Server doesn't look like a Windows 8 kiddy-tiles desktop rather a more enterprise-friendly Windows 7 desktop with a proper Start menu and all. Training issues? No. Software compatibility issues? Nope. (Windows 8.1 - a futile attempt at turd polishing? Roll on Windows 9?)
Other comments have got it right - a certain absent mindedness and lack of recognition of just how smart they are would seem to define a good boffin. The boffin is an amiable chap who only causes the end of the world accidentally. The rest of us apes owe the comforts of modern life to boffins.
... thanks for the tip - Privacy Badger has greatly improved my browsing experience of The Register as it has the effect of blocking ads. Flashblock did a good job of not distracting my eyeballs but page loading is much faster now that I don't even see the space a blocked Flash ad used to take up. But ultimately I guess my selfish actions are contributing to the death of "free" content made possible by advertising. Oh dear...
@Charlie Clark - try Puppy Linux?
Microsoft were "warning users that if they don’t upgrade soon, hackers will lie in wait each new Patch Tuesday to reverse-engineer a full set of new vulnerabilities."
@Microsoft - when making a "what-a-caring-company" gesture that also FUDs users into moving off XP perhaps it would be best not to pick one of your many zero day vulnerabilities that highlights the crappy security in all of your operating systems and software...
"Any data collection or treatment should only be carried out with full agreement of the parties involved"
Agreement and *understanding* of the Ts&Cs? How long before the biggest serial privacy abusers (FesseBook, Goggle, et al) announce they are no longer doing business in Brazil - or get caught should the law actually get enforced?
Evolution dispenses with unused organs. Blind cave fish don't retain vision in an environment where it is not needed. (But interestingly a study published in Current Biology showed that crossing members of different poplations of Astyanax mexicanus could restore sight demonstrating it is a different genetic mutation in each.)
So could it be that evolution has simply dispensed with unsed parts of creationists' mental faculties such as reason and logic? (However, cross-breeding someone from Texas with someone from Arizona is unlikely to restore those mental faculties just increase the belief in Brawndo's Electrolytes...)
"... only 1000 daily users of Firefox in TIFKAM ..."
I would be surprised if there are more than 1000 daily users of *any* of the Windows 8 kiddy mode apps if they have a desktop alternative. I pretty soon stopped visiting the bizarre TIFKAM world that Microsoft decided I would want on my new work PC.
> "We are making improvements to the user interface that will naturally bridge touch and desktop, especially for our mouse and keyboard users," said Joe Belfiore, vice president of Windows Phone. "We have a number of targeted UI improvements that keep our highly satisfying touch experience intact, but that make the UI more familiar and more convenient for users with mouse/keyboard."
Working with a 27-inch Windows 8 desktop machine, I have it pushed quite far back on the desk where it looks like a really gigantic mobile phone even compared to the 1980s monsters.
The main improvement I need is longer arms when I am forced to use the kiddy toy features of Windows 8.
The prison service has always offered work and training as a means of improving the lot of prisoners when they get out. Nowadays the Ministry of Justice says vocational training is typically in engineering, plastics, printing, tailoring, footwear, woodwork, etc. In the past it majored on the building trades. The trouble is call centre *work* in prison is not particularly brilliant training for a future career. Banks and financial institutions are unlikely employers. Many other firms will have rules / stigma about employing ex-prisoners. The capabilities prisoners develop will be the softer skills that are more difficult to evidence in an interview. There are probably good jobs that could be given to prisoners but surely modern day call centre slavery is not one of them?
Your comment about "Adam Smith's large, uncaring invisible hands" is a bit off track. Adam Smith was making the point about supporting domestic over foreign industry. An invisible hand would guide the individual to do what was in their own self interest and in so doing benefit the annual revenue of the whole of their own society (and not that of other countries). Something Adam Smith suggested statesmen and lawgivers should not mess about with. Not really an argument over one person getting a better paid job than the rest...
We have the Tefal version of the grill in the house. Makes the best crispy bacon I have ever tasted. (Mind you a proper bacon sarnie is not made with crispy bacon but thick, juicy, fatty bacon smothered in HP sauce between two slabs of white bloomer...)
There is a lot of speculative or even contradicting twaddle from health professionals fuelling the journarselists space-filling articles - BMC says salt and chemicals in bacon, BHF says it is the fat. Boffins at Harvard say avoid creating nitrosamines or heterocyclic amines during cooking.
All I know is if the choice is no more bacon or an early death, well...
Surely the correct British response to Google Glass is a slight raise of the eyebrows or at most a barely audible tut. All this upvoting and downvoting shows a lack of sang-froid, chaps.
If Google Glass takes off at all it will probably just be a passing fad. Only a couple of years back taxi drivers, white-van men and salemen used to have bluetooth headsets permanently attached to their heads.
I agree with your point about the search nearby function - it seems to have disappeared from the map pin options. You can still get the same results by entering "abc near xyz" but personally I then find the new presentation style a bit naff. You get a tantalising glimpse of the old clean and easy-to-read style by entering, say, "pubs near wembley stadium" on the Google web search. Then click on the map to see the same results in the updated Google Maps. Pants...
Perhaps learn from the Mercury program where engineers saw astronauts simply as passengers but reacted to complaints and included a hatch with explosive bolts, a decent-sized window and manual controls? All lovingly rendered in trompe-l'œil, of course - http://images.jsc.nasa.gov/lores/S61-03698.jpg
There has been serious scientific research into the important question of milk in tea. Boffins at Sheffield University have studied how tea polyphenols react with beta-casein in milk to affect the atringency of tea due to the reduced opportunity for interaction of the tea polyphenols with chemically similar salivary proline-rich proteins.
Obviously the proportion of tannins in the blend of tea itself and the amount extracted by the infusion process will determine the personal preference for milk or not.
As for biscuits, anyone else tried Moores Dorset Knobs dunked in tea? (http://www.moores-biscuits.co.uk/dorset-knobs.html).
A young programmer colleague assigned to support a big project implementation in Norway couldn't work out why all the middle-aged ladies got a fit of the giggles when he asked if he could use their mouse to show them something. One day it was explained to him that "mus" was slang for female genitalia. (http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/mus#Derived_terms_3).
And a recent high street retailer newspaper ad tried to calm us luddites by saying that the familiar desktop is *just one click away*. (But failed to mention that once you are in the desktop the Windows key takes you back to kiddy-tiles mode because that is where you should be doing all your real work of course.)
Part of the folklore of tea making for my elders was to agitate the pot to guarantee infusion was doing its magic. This was done by holding the handle and alternating several times between pointing the spout at the ceiling and tilting the pot as if to pour - but obviously stopping before any spillage - and saying the magic incantation of "show it to the pictures". It works equally well with the loose leaf tea of last century and the lazy man's bagged tea.
(I know coffee is barred from this discussion but a similar agitation technique can be applied when lifting the coffee pot from the hotplate to avoid a weak first mug of that other essential IT fuel.)
A problem with so-called balanced reporting is the need to go off and find two opposing points of view even when one side is a bonkers or minority view.
An example from a few years back was Global Warming (a term found to be too biased) aka Climate Change. Despite the majority of scientific opinion pointing to man-made influences being detrimental to the environment, journalists still had to find someone who disagreed for “balance”. Of course it could be that scientists had to take the view they did in order to get funding?
I reckon there must be some truth behind this research though - I still get a feeling of nihilistic despair if a climate change discussion kicks off again in the media...
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