* Posts by Jaxx

3 posts • joined 24 Aug 2012

George Clooney of IT: Dribbling disaster and damp disk warnings scare the life out of innocent user


Re: It is very important to select your victim carefully,

My first proper job in IT was as a field engineer working on ancient Control Data machines at a large government site. One machine was a CDC3600, Seymore Crays first super computer circa 1965. Looking through the manuals it was found that an interrupt could start the machine from the stopped state (yes, mainframes of that era had a Stop key that brought the whole machine to a halt). So a little machine language program was written that set up a timer interrupt, but then kept resetting the timer in a tight loop. This was left running at the end of a maintenance period, the operator came along and, seeing that the machine was running hit the stop key to load the OS. The console typewriter immediately printed "F*ck off I'm busy" and the machine started again. After a few tries, he came to the engineers shack to complain.

Joke done time to end it. Unfortunately hitting Master Clear or Stop (or any other key) had no effect. Time to panic! As the machine had core memory, even switching it off wasn't going to help. Eventually we found that holding Stop and Master Clear down together for 5 seconds or so stopped the monster. Time to retreat to the shack and change the underwear.

Australia facepalms as Facebook blocks bookstores, sport, health services instead of just news

Black Helicopters

Re: Screaming from the over-entitled masses

Few people overseas seem to know that the Australian press is more than Murdocks murky corner, and he is a Yank these days anyway.

The Facebook apologists seem to imply that it is a public service working for the good of all, it is really a money grubbing corporation trying to extract every last dollar out of its product. It works like a Las Vegas casino, they don't want you to leave for any reason, put up a link to a particular story, so you can just go to that and return to Facebook not poke around in the news providers site, you may click on their ads not Facebooks.

Facebook wants to be the whole internet no reason to ever leave.

Akihabara unplugged: Tokyo's electric town falls flat


The world moves on

I visited Akihabara for the first time in 10 years last year, although it was something of a disapointment, some of the old place still remains. One of the rabbit warrens of little stalls selling components under the railway is still there as is the Tokyo Radjo Departo, but the Joy Plaza (not a maid cafe but a radio control model shop where the owner used to fly a big model helicopter in the street on sundays), the guy selling nothing other than ball races, and the little shop that sold great knives are all gone.

I first visited Akihabara in 1980 when the Australian dollar got you 270 Yen and everything was cheap, the place seemed like a wonderland but left me with a customs problem on the return home. I suppose that it is progress in a way, but I'd still rather have the place where you could buy a calculator with built in abacus (in case of battery failure) and other such wacky things.


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