* Posts by Don The Elder

22 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Nov 2013

Sounds like the black helicopters have come for us. Oh, just another swarm of FAA-approved Amazon delivery drones

Don The Elder

Prime them to bankruptcy

I order things as I need them, maybe 4 times a day - shoelaces, box of candy, $3.75 12 v to USB charger, $6.50 package of M10 bolts (delivered on Sunday!) I've noticed that many companies I've previously seen are no longer there. I learned a lot about insurgency techniques in the '60s. Walmart has a $35-minimum limit and many more "warehouses" (local stores.) We'll see how it plays out the next two depressed years.

What do you call megabucks Microsoft? No really, it's not a joke. El Reg needs you

Don The Elder

Been M$ for years around here

Even though I'm 15 hours late in proposing it, It can't be beat as a shortcut!

Show of hands?

Socket to the energy bill: 5-bed home with stupid number of power outlets leaves us asking... why?

Don The Elder

Grow lights?

Get a police sniffer dog in for an inspection before making an offering.

Not just adhesive, but alcohol-resistant adhesive: Well done, Apple. Airpods Pro repairability is a zero

Don The Elder
Big Brother

Re: alcohol-resistant adhesive

Vegetable oil works on an amazing number of adhesives; bumper stickers, plastic & glass food labels, mailing labels, software seals...oopsie!

Remember, remember!

The fifth of November,

The Gunpowder treason and plot;

I know of no reason

Why the Gunpowder treason

Should e'er be forgot!

FedEx execs: We had no idea cyberattack would be so bad. Investors: Is that why you sold $40m+ of your own shares?

Don The Elder

The mining wars are on!

I wonder is this had anything to do with Amazon and FedEx parting ways in America this year. Each claimed to have made the decision, instead of both releasing a "mutual agreement" statement. Amazon doesn't like people taking customers' data out of their vaults.

Brit rocket boffins Reaction Engines notch up first supersonic precooler test

Don The Elder

Helium is a dead end

Unless someone develops a way to produce He, current supplies will be exhausted within a decade. No more squeaky voices, dead birds & dolphins, MRIs, SABREs...

It's alive! Hands on with Microsoft's Chromium Edge browser

Don The Elder
Big Brother

Privacy? We've heard of it,

What about privacy options? I was just cleaning up my DOMStore, then went to INetCookies and (I'm shocked- shocked) discovered that some third-party site cookies. Checking my Privacy settings I found that IE11 had changed 1st > Prompt 3rd > Block to > Always > Always. Oddly enough, there are none in Low. And the DOMStore in AppData > LocalLow hasn't collected any in 8 months. I'll have to do a comprehensive search to see if there are other folders, with this sneakware change. I've always hated having the store dick following me; that's why I've stuck with IE11. I knew the color of his moustache.

Groundhog Day comes early as Intel Display Drivers give Windows 10 the silent treatment

Don The Elder

Since you mentioned the Pennsylvania Polka, have a listen to Pennsylvania Turnpike, I Love You So, by Dick Todd. There's a video version that shows construction and early travelers, but I could only find the more recent version in a quick scan this morning. I was born in the only town that's mentioned in the song.

Can't log into your TSB account? Well, it's your own fault for trying

Don The Elder

9 minutes to watch a 233 second video

Must be tapping the back arrow with your foot in time to the music. That disconnect with our universe would explain a lot of your life. What is that fantastic wind-up stringed instrument? Was it designed for arthritic musicians or, as with so many things useful at my stage in life, amputee veterans of the Napoleonic and Great Wars?

Autonomous cars are about to do to transport what the internet did to information

Don The Elder

Re: Works for cities

Yeah, gonna work fine until the pedestrians discover that the ecars will stop for you, unlike New York/Paris/Moscow taxis. (See the Trains comments.) The resulting gridlock can never be sorted out, because each of the following cars will be waiting for the ecar in front to move, and some geek will set an electric arm waving just to impress his buddies. Or, more likely, to gain time to cut into a van and remove its contents — the police will be there in a month or so, after they yank cars from the back of the queue so they can move in. Diverting loads will not work, just tie up traffic even more, so the load will never be arrive at any target point. In rural areas you could just tie a sheep in the road and take all the time you want, the police will be pulling sheepcars from the cities.

Next: 50 mile commutes in a Li-Ion car in LA/Silicon Valley/Dallas w/o A/C.

King's College London bods recruit members for penis ring study

Don The Elder

The Elves hid in Scotland

Elves were not immortal, just immune to natural death, or they would have been able to monopolize warfare by infinite reproduction, even if it took ten thousand years. That 's why they are now possibly extinct: too many Highlander scripts, followed by the last one racing on the A83!

Vapists rejoice! E-cigs lower cancer risk (if you stop smoking, duh)

Don The Elder

I've been waiting for someone going to make a vaper that looks like a pipe. It wouldn't be so annoyingly obvious, especially if you didn't use some weird scent. (Blueberry? Really?) Add a couple of leather or corduroy elbow patches to double the price. (Probably an archaic reference.)

As far as the chemical composition being safer, a lot of people are sensitive to aspartame without knowing it, resulting in headaches and bloating. Often they are also sensitive to Red 40, monosodium glutamate, and tyramine, which have the same symptoms when consumed: I believe there is a common chemical component, not yet isolated. My wife lost over 1/2 stone in the first week after we started watching ingredient labels, and it was obvious from the tightening of her face that it was water squeezed out of her blood vessels as they contracted to normality.

And for people being aware of the history of their culture, how many people know the original slang meaning of "coffin nail"? (Ever hear "Puff, Puff, Puff" by Phil Harris? How many millennials understand line 2 of "Taxman" by the Beetles?

Let me tell you how it will be

There's one for you, nineteen for me

'Cause I'm the taxman, yeah, I'm the taxman

Silicon Valley VCs: We're gonna make California great again – on its own

Don The Elder

The nation of Texas

Texas entered the United States with a contract that says it can exit at any time. This would be highly inconvenient, since the national power grid would be split in twain, but legal.

We should allow California to split into three, as the northern part wants, and lose the bottom two, San Francisco and Los Angeles, to see if anyone notices they're gone before they starve.

Squeaky bum time for Apple: It hasn’t made enough iPhone 7 Pluses

Don The Elder

Supply shortages

There really are random shortages, thanks to Hanjin's bankruptcy. It's bad enough that the port holding your cargo expects you to pay a huge surcharge to release it, but how about the containers 6 layers down? If you were the fourth stop of a ship being held at the first PoC, how can you even find out where you have to call? And you may not even know that it is on a Hanjin transport ship if you didn't book directly with them. Maybe it's still on the dock somewhere, waiting for the Mary Celeste. Gonna' be fun in January, trying to convince the manufacturer that you can't pay the bill for something you couldn't sell!

French hackers selling hidden .22 calibre pen guns on secret forums

Don The Elder

Re: Newton's Third Law of Motion

I remember these from shop class in the 60s. Wearing a glove there was no mark on your hand as the bullet's mass is negligible, as is the muzzle velocity. The French Resistance (and English and American spies) used them for contact assassination, distraction, and suicide. A bureaucrat might be threatened by one, but an overcoat would stop the shot from a foot or two.

Of supermarkets, Volkswagen and the future of Dell-EMC

Don The Elder

Automotive analogy

I'll get to IT (one of my careers) eventually. Probably most of you are not familiar with American car history. I grew up with:

GM - Chevy, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Buick, Cadillac (from the cheapest to the Most expensive)

Ford - Ford, Edsel, Mercury, Lincoln

Chrysler - Plymouth, Desoto, Dodge, Chrysler, Imperial

American Motors - Nash, Hudson.

In each group, the mid-range cars were considered the sportiest. The consolidation began after the Great War. Your country was so devastated by the two World Wars that consolidation didn't occur until the end of the century, although the disappearance of marques happened in both countries.

So Studebaker and Packard died, the Cord never flew, American bought Jeep, the gas crisis occurred, Chrysler bought American to get Jeep, and we have:

GM - Chevy, Buick, Cadillac

Ford - Ford, Lincoln

(DiamondStar)-(Benz)-Fiat-Chrysler - Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler, Ram Trucks.

I see the same scenario in IT today, because the Bean Counters always win! Fortunately, I'm retired.

Trivia: Bentley was formed as a racing company. They were major competitors of Rolls-Royce in the 1920s. The Merlin engine of Spitfire fame was an outgrowth of Rolls' racing-airplane group.

Previously used in American light tanks in World II, Rolls-Royce acquired a license to produce the Oldsmobile Hydramatic for Rolls-Royce and Bentley automobiles. It continued production until 1967.

Possibly apocryphally, it was said that when the Rolls engineers dismantled the transmission they thought the finish on the plates was too rough, so they polished it. Of course it didn't work!

Back to IT, why aren't Micro$oft, Gaggle, and Amazme clouds mentioned?

El Reg mulls entering Robot Wars arena

Don The Elder

Hydrogen Fuel Cell powered true (wheel-less) Hoverboard with Lithium-Ion Battery magnetic-mine fists? So what if they would melt the end of your arms off?

VW’s case of NOxious emissions: a tale of SMOKE and MIRRORS?

Don The Elder

Electric cars are better?

"This could be the final scandal that pushes the First World into the lap of the electric car lobby."

Besides the fact that few people know about the inherent losses in the transmission grid, or pay attention to the amount of heat energy emitted by the voltage converters, how much of the claimed distance-to-halt is actually achieved during rain or snow storms? In the dark of night with the windshield (windscreen) defroster blowing? Have you ever carried a can of electrons to an empty Tesla tank? Emergency service providers take special courses and need expensive equipment to handle high-voltage, poisonous-content battery packs in wrecks. Thank you, no, I'll stick to my petroleum engine.

'Fix these Windows 10 Horrors': Readers turn their guns on Redmond

Don The Elder

Re: Windows 10 woes

Edge appears to have only three privacy modes: Block all cookies/Block only third party cookies/Don’t block cookies. Set Advanced cookies to Prompt for both types, then surf almost anywhere without checking the Always block, and count the variety of servers and number of times each server asks to set a "cookie" (there normally are five locations for them in Win 7/8.1, only one labeled Cookies, but the suppliants are not locked into any of them), and you may see why there are "random" lockups. And ask yourself why the same url needs to set more than one; could it be that it read something NOT in any of those locations (say YOUR location) and so needs to rewrite its previous text? And I found http://yatterz.co.uk/2015/07/27/windows-10-tutorials-128-allow-or-block-cookies-in-microsoft-edge/ claims that you can't modify system settings, say to open a Tesla's gull wings while moving (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/07/21/chinese_uni_students_pop_tesla_model_s/). I hope that Win 7 (or even 8.1) is still available when they pry my cold, dead fingers off my trackball.

Bing to encrypt search traffic by default

Don The Elder

That's privacy?

The only choices for Cookies in Sparta are None, Block Third Party, and All. So I'm secure in my search (except M$ can parse it for advertising money,) but every typosquatter can read my computer and write anything it wants? If you don't believe that, set IE11 to Prompt for both, don't check Always on first-party but do accept each one, and count how many cookies some sites want to set before you can move forward. If they're not reading something that they want to remember, what are they recording with each cookie? Looks as if I'm going to have to do more local coding whenever IE11 is assassinated.


Don The Elder

Maybe not a battery

A lot of the early Christmas-toy helicopters used capacitors instead of batteries. You charge quickly at a high voltage, discharge at a low voltage for longer flight. Haven't checked on them for donkeys' years.

Do dishwashers really blunt knives

Don The Elder

Washing & sharpening

I have an assortment of Mundial, Edge Resources, and Old Hickory knives, the most expensive ones acquired through Amazon at 80% off list (yeah, right!) Acquired through 47 years of college and marriage, the high-carbon Old Hickory see the most use, and the most machine washing, and have to be from the last home we had, pre-1982. I lay all the knives in the top rack, with the edges angled up to avoid direct pressure from the water streams, and use the no-heat drying function, hopefully opening the door shortly after the washing finishes to dry things more quickly. I find no rusting on any of the blades, and I've gradually gone to all high-carbon for ease of edge maintenance. I slice bread, serrano ham very thinly, tomatoes, cheese, corn cobs, chicken bones...I used to butcher my own lambs. I resharpen with a few strokes whenever the ball-of-the-thumb test demands.

For sharpening I use Edgecraft's Chef'sChoice Model 478 & 480 diamond hones. Using strips of diamond abrasive material (anyone remember freshening your car's distributor points?) both sides are sharpened at the correct angle at the same time, no honing needed. Following the curve of the tip is easy, without the jump of falling off one of the angled rods so commonly used. I've not tried ceramic blades, knowing that my current propensity for dropping things (too much elbow and shoulder wear) would dramatically shorten their lifespans.

Whilst a scanning electron microscope operator 45 years ago (senior and post college,) I ran across an article comparing wet versus dry sharpening. Using a scanning microscope, one of the major sharpening companies found that dry sharpening (with honing) resulted in smoother edges. Ever notice the dark line the first cut with an oil-whetted knife leaves? That's why many people test the edge on a sheet of paper. That's the particles that filled in the microscopic pits left by the sharpening process, making the edge feel smooth faster than dry sharpening, but immediately dulling the edge. The company followed up by doing customer knives both ways and sending them out unidentified. Butchers using the dry-sharpened knives kept using them longer than those using the wet-sharpened ones.