* Posts by drand

97 posts • joined 15 Nov 2012

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The UK's favourite lockdown cheese is Big and Red but doesn't require a stinking great audit after consumption

drand

It's not what cheese you eat...

… but that you eat cheese. Feast well and sweet dreams people.

All-electric plane makes first flight – while lugging 2 tons of batteries aloft

drand

Re: The video

How about an enormous elastic band?

Realme's X50m is a decently specced 5G phone – for the price of a 1995 Nissan Micra

drand
Go

Re: The thing about a 1995 Nissan Micra is...

This is sadly true, and the only real negative about them other than front crossmembers rusting! The ones that get taken banger racing are the 1-litre cars (the thing to have now that 998 A-series minis are super-rare). There are not many 1.3 cars left either as they sold less when new. I love mine. It does the occasional commute when I'm not cycling, takes the kids to extra-curricular activities, and I go rallying with it at weekends and it's bloody competitive in the 1400cc class, 25 years old or not.

British Army adopts WhatsApp for formal orders as coronavirus isolation kicks in

drand

Re: So Facebook is in command of the British Army

All Your Base Are Belong To Us

Come kneel with us at UK's Cathedral, er, Oil Rig of the Canal: Engineering masterpiece Anderton Boat Lift

drand
Thumb Up

Hurrah for the ABL

I grew up not far from here (Barnton) and the ABL and the rise and fall of industry around the Weaver and Trent & Mersey were a staple of school projects and trips for pretty much every subject. I remember visiting in the mid-eighties and the lift was in a bit of a state but still glorious and inspiring. There was, and still is, a lot of local pride vested in it.

There is also a lovely walk (if the rose tint has not grown too strong) west along the bucolic Weaver valley - all the way to the M56 if you like, which isn't so pretty - through Dutton locks and viaduct, and the old Weaver meanders around Pickering's Cut, where we used to play on the ice in severe winters (until I fell through and my Dad gave me a right bollocking).

Great article El Reg. I shall be reminiscing all afternoon.

Can AI-enhanced virtual sports presenters do the job? It's a big ask

drand

Re: To be fair...

I love the idea but I wish these systems didn't insist on 'needing' a cloud infrastructure.

Yes, I know that's where the value lies for the vendors, but it's bloody irritating all the same.

Microsoft brings the pane: You'll be looking at Xamarin and React Native to design apps for dual-screen gizmos

drand
Coat

Re: Fuck ... off ...

was it... Microsoft?

Intel teases NUC-leheads with new desktop-class graphics systems and a fast i9 CPU

drand

Re: Displacement??

As the old saying goes, there's no replacement for displacement volumetric efficiency.

Attention! Very important science: Tapping a can of fizzy beer does... absolutely nothing

drand
Pint

Re: Shaken

No. A can is as close as you can get to a mini cask and is better than anything else for keeping one serving of beer in optimum condition. Just because crap lager comes in cans doesn't mean everything in a can is rubbish. There are many fine ales and craft beers available in cans at your local proper drinking establishment that provide quality and choice when a whole cask isn't economically or logistically viable.

Tesla has a smashing weekend: Model 3 on Autopilot whacks cop cars, Elon's Cybertruck demolishes part of LA

drand
Unhappy

Absolute bastards

I thought of laser windscreen wipers when I was ten. I drew a picture of them on a car to enter a Ford design competition (I think it was for a new small coupe which went on to become the Puma). Wish I'd kept a copy. I think McLaren have recently released details of a car with an alternative to wipers for clearing the front screen (might be a track-only car).

Motorola's mid-range One Hyper packs 64MP cam, huge screen and – ooo – 'Quad Pixel' tech

drand

Still here Moto

MyG5 is still doing the business. When it eventually has to be replaced I will miss the fingerprint reader navigation (the single biggest improvement in Android usability, for me) and the fact it's just about pocketable and operable with one of my small, girly hands.

We strained our eyes with Lenovo's monster monitor: 43.4 inches for price of five 24" screens

drand

Re: Jesus wept

But an aspect ratio of 16:5 would be really narrow top to bottom. You'd have to stack one on top of another to get it to look right.

Teardown gurus plunge screwdrivers into Google Pixel 4XL: Check out the speedy display from, er, Samsung

drand

Seems like the iFixit article is chiding Google for using a Samsung screen; this seems a bit harsh given that they are a systems integrator mixed with a little bit of their own stuff.

Former BAE Systems contractor charged with 'damaging disclosure' of UK defence secrets

drand

Re: ??

It is newsworthy because it rarely happens. There are around one or two prosecutions like this per year come to trial under the official secrets act. The fact that a lot of the substance can't be reported tells you something about the gravity of the allegations (subject to whether the authorities have over-classified the pertinent information). It might not make for much of an article but that doesn't mean it's not worth publishing.

Father of Unix Ken Thompson checkmated: Old eight-char password is finally cracked

drand

You're holding it wrong.

Linky revisited: How the evil French smart meter escaped Hell to taunt me

drand

Allez, Marcel!

Allez, Marcel, grab your hi-viz vest and pitchfork, let's head to the town hall for an afternoon of impotent irrational shouting and incongruous vehicle pyromania!

Why I both love and loathe France and the French. infuriatingly but also admirably bonkers.

Are you who you say you are, sir? You are? That's all fine then

drand

Re: Santander

EE do this too - weren't interested when I complained that any and every droid had access to user accounts and passwords.

Right-click opens up terrifying vistas of reality and Windows 95 user's frightful position therein

drand

Re: pet peeve

Ooh, me too! also "everyday"/"every day".

drand
Coat

Re: Walk like an...

I went to Egypt and it was brilliant. I saw lots of funny little pictures carved into stone and painted on walls. I also enjoyed the mummified crocodiles. But I never saw their ancient TFT screens.

Fairphone 3 stripped to the modular essentials: Glue? What glue?

drand
Happy

A commendable effort

Shows what can be done. I think it's a little unfair to criticise on the basis that the processor can't be swapped - the pin pitch on those things in tiny and needs specialist kit and skills to replace. The module level is a sensible bottom line for serviceability.

The bigger question I think is the availability of parts two, three or five years down the road.

Allowlist, not whitelist. Blocklist, not blacklist. Goodbye, wtf. Microsoft scans Chromium code, lops off offensive words

drand

Coffee without milk?!

Otherwise known as "Coffee". If you want to spoil it, you can ask for "coffee with milk". Same applies to tea I suppose (though if I wanted to gum my mouth up with tannin I'd rather have a bottle of Barolo).

One person's harmless japery can be another's night of LaserJet Lego

drand
Holmes

Coffe from a vending machine is by definition inadequate!

Rise of the Machines hair-raiser: The day IBM's Dot Matrix turned

drand

Re: Try a Lathe

Yes and the mitigation against the hazard is described too, it's enforcable and works, no need for a blanket rule, that's the point!

drand

Re: Try a Lathe

The reason schoolkids wear clip-on ties, if they do, is simply to do with the enormous amount of distraction suffered by school staff in enforcing uniform policy when the little darlings insist on wearing ties with knots bigger than their heads. I don't think there's any valid health and safety reason for it, though some might claim such. This is a shame, as learning different tie knots is a useful life skill, and let's face it it's fun to give your mate a 'peanut' and yank his tie so hard the knot fuses into such a tight tange of polyester that he mechanical assistance is required to extricate him from his hilarious predicament.

When I was at school decades ago you weren't allowed near any tools or machinery until you had taken your tie off and rolled your shirt sleeves up (to be a 2" cuff, crisp fold, just above the elbow and no more or you'd get a bollocking!). This was also the only time you got to dress down unless it got really hot and 'shirt sleeve order' was declared, accompanied by a master walking up and down the corridor ringing a handbell. Usually this only happened if it were hotter than the surface of the sun and several boys had already fainted.

Fantastic Mr Fox? Not when he sh*ts on your lawn, kids' trampoline and your soul

drand

Move house?

In my experience not a lot you can do. However if you are a gardener don't use any animal derived products (except manure) such as fish/blood/bone meal fertilisers and don't put meat / fish bones or scraps in your compost, nor eggshells.

Perhaps if you were to suggest to your local council that they were aggressive, they might come and 'sort them out'?..

GM Cruise holds off on self-driving taxis for this year, says it needs more testing time to be safe

drand

"

When you’re working on the large scale deployment of mission critical safety systems, the mindset of “move fast and break things” certainly doesn’t cut it.

"

It's not just mission-critical, it's safety critical. Maybe that's just semantics but to me there's a big difference. There necessarily needs to be a lot of analysis and rigour in safety work but you will always come across issues in integrating sub-systems so there is a place for change it / break it testing of the products of your design; but that place is a controlled environment, not out on the streets.

'Is this Microsoft trying to be cool? Want to go to the Apple Store?' We checked out London's new retail extravaganza

drand

Re: a shop, er, "retail experience", built to fit around a corner.

Unlike the Apple store, which features innovative smooth radii.

Tesla’s Autopilot losing track of devs crashing out of 'leccy car maker

drand
Headmaster

Re: 110 Software Engineers on the wall...

Upvote for correct use of 'decimated' which is all too rare. Grumble grumble.

Take the bus... to get some new cables: Raspberry Pi 4s are a bit picky about USB-Cs

drand

Re: Let me get this straight

Actually you have to do it three times:

First the right way, which doesn't fit because you are unworthy in the eyes of the USB gods

Second the wrong way

Third the right way again which, having paid pennace, now fits.

Google's cunning AI linguist, Uncle Sam drills ML skills into .mil, Intel's iffy CPU claims

drand
Headmaster

Re: An epitaph: there is a sentence

"

There is a sentence:

- Alice and Bob are coming, she dances and he jokes.

"

Yeah, but this sentence needs a semicolon, or to be split into two sentences. Where's the AI pedant when one needs it?

Time to reformat the old wallet and embiggen your smartmobe: The 1TB microSD is here

drand

Re: That's 2PB in a Coke can

And yet there are always more pictures of cats.

Guess what shrinks when it gets cold and then you shake it around a little? The Moon. We're talking about the Moon

drand

I suspect it's one of those novelty truckles available in the supermarkets around xmas. Probably a rank flavour, which would explain why it's still lurking at the back of the cosmic fridge, uneaten.

Japan on track to start testing Alfa-X, fastest train in the world with top speed of 400kph

drand
Go

Scream ifyou want to go faster

All this talk of 125s and no mention of Paxman Valentas. They should be installed in all the trains just for the aural pleasure they provide.

I've had it with these mother-fscking slaps on this mother-fscking plane: Flight fight sparks legal brouhaha over mid-air co-ords

drand

Airline seats should be fixed-back

unless enough room is provided such that a reclined seat in front does not interfere with my legs. I always seem to get sat behind the moron who thrusts their seat back at the first possible opportunity. Yet another reason, along with tedious security theatre and hellish shopping malls masquerading as airpotrs, to avoid air travel.

Town admits 'a poor decision was made' after baseball field set on fire to 'dry' it more quickly

drand
Trollface

It's not a proper sport

...if it can't be played in the wet.

Hello, tech support? Yes, I've run out of desk... Yes, DESK... space

drand

It's harsh to blame users when they're faced with new kit and a totally alien way of working but what kind of engineer is 'Phil' if he hasn't taken his shiny new mouse apart to see how it works? Any new stuff arrives here I have to lock it away or else someone will be sneaking towards it with a screwdriver before I've even had chance to break out the set up guide.

UK.gov's Verify has 'significantly' missed every target, groans spending watchdog

drand
Headmaster

Mixing metaphors is a pain in the neck and should be weeded out.

Florida man's deadliest catch forces police to evacuate Taco Bell

drand

Here fishy fishy

I've never been into the whole fishing thing but I do keep an aquarium. I never knew fish were magnetic though. Amazing what you learn.

Nissan EV app password reset prompts user panic

drand
Coat

Juke hazard

I came here to pointout that picture is of a Nissan Juke, but someone's got there first. While I'm not a fan of downsized turbocharged engines with a high boost threshold and boring torque plateau, I think in the context of EV's the Juke does qualify as having a 'proper engine'. Nissan CG series all the way for me. And yes, I am wearing an anorak, which I shall fetch forthwith and leave.

Edit - picture title even has 'Juke' in it so maybe I don't deserve as many i-spy points as I first thought.

Found yet another plastic nostalgia knock-off under the tree? You, sir, need an emulator

drand

F/A 18 Interceptor

Many, many hours spent playing this on my A500 (with 1meg upgrade) when I was about 10. I was fascinated with the cardboard code wheel that was needed to start the game. I could never complete the fourth mission though, even when I shot everything down and landed on the Russian sub carrier.

Amazon robot fingered for bear spray leak that hospitalised 24 staffers

drand
Joke

No Bears

To be fair, there haven't been any bear sightings in that Amazon facility since.

Samsung's graphene batteries promise to charge five times faster – without exploding

drand
Headmaster

Re: Not Samsung

It's the rogue apostrophe that gives it away, innit?

Space station springs a leak while astronauts are asleep (but don't panic)

drand
Thumb Up

A wise old engineer once said to me:

If you can't fix it with duct tape, you're not using enough duct tape.

Fruit flies use the power of the sun to help them fly in straight lines

drand
Coat

Time flies...

like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana.

Tech team trapped in data centre as hypoxic gas flooded in. Again

drand

> Ours has a 30 second stand-off.

Our inert gas system does too, plus it has a seven-segment display on the outside of the room counting down the seconds. It's gone off twice (both times over the weekend, with no-one about) but I'm waiting for the day it goes off when I'm in there and I can casually stroll out with one second left on the clock..

Drug cops stopped techie's upgrade to question him for hours. About everything

drand

Re: Made it here first!

I'm quoting the school councillor in Southpark, whose character is there to take the piss out of the 'Just Say No' approach to drugs (include alcohol if you wish) education. It's what came into my head when I pictured the article's drug enforcement officers, happily enforcing without understanding.

drand

Re: Made it here first!

Drugs are bad. Mmmmkay?

Crappy IoT on the high seas: Holes punched in hull of maritime security

drand

Stay away from the South China Sea

It's almost the plot of Tomorrow Never Dies (different method, same outcome)! Frightening but not surprising.

How's this for a stocking filler next year? El Reg catches up with Gemini

drand
Thumb Up

Resistance has finally gone

Been umming and aahing about whether to commit to the Indiegogo but having seen this I know I'm going to do it. Fuck it, it's Christmas and the money is pouring away like a rancid bottle of mulled wine down the sink anyhow.

BlackBerry's new Motion will move you neither to tears of joy nor sadness

drand
Meh

Re: USP

The Gemini people are at GITEX too.

Does El Reg have any updates for us after your fondle of the prototypes a month ago? That would be more exciting than a new BB that no-one will buy, no matter how decent it is.

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