* Posts by Little Mouse

1382 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Dec 2014


Ex-Twitter sextet sues Elon Musk for 'stiffing' them on severance

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Re: Someone should create a Twitter lawsuit directory

I second that request.

Perhaps a popular vulture-branded online tech journal would be willing to take on the task...?

Upvote the A/C above to add your name to the petition.

Electric two-wheelers are set to scoot past EVs in road race

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Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

I stopped reading at the point where smartphone integration got touted as a good thing.


You spend x-thousand on an e-bike/e-scooter, only to cripple it with a piece of shiny that's guaranteed to be obsolete within a year or two? And that's supposed to be a desirable feature?

Cisco: Don't use 'blind spot' – and do use 'feed two birds with one scone'

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Re: Inclusive Leadership via Language


Such elitist and/or subservient labels have no place in here.

Capita admits some pension data 'likely' to have been accessed in March breach

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Re: Private Eye named them perfectly!

"they're just a bunch of second-rate chancers"

I disagree - They are very focused and good at what they do best, which is negotiate airtight contracts that guarantee a ridiculously good financial return for themselves, no matter how poorly they perform.

Insurers can't use 'act of war' excuse to avoid Merck's $1.4B NotPetya payout

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They're also going to "create more certainty for policyholders" off the back of this "confusion". Which presumably means re-wording their policies to ensure that these specific circumstances will absolutely not be covered in future.

UK becomes Unicorn Kingdom, where AI fairy dust earns King's ransom

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"The UK’s GREAT"?

I'd never even heard of that campaign. The UK only showcasing “the very best of British" sounds like sticking two fingers up at Northern Ireland to me...

China joins US and Europe in considering 3D-printed Moon bases

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Presumably a relatively cheap way to learn some of the hard lessons early on would be to attempt something similar on Earth first. Maybe by setting up shop in an old quarry and using the material that's right there on and in the ground. It's hardly Moon-conditions, granted, but as a simple feasibility study it must have some merit.

Has such an endeavour ever been attempted?

Mandiant's 'most prevalent threat actor' may be living under your roof – the teenager

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teens "are incredibly effective social engineers" - ?????

It's so UNFAIR! - You've ruined my life! - I HATE YOU ALL!!!!

</Stomp Stomp Stomp. Door-slam. Stomp Stomp>

Pentagon shoots down UFO rumors but says 650 cases are still pending

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Black Helicopters

Being "All-domain" I expect they investigate anything you could file under "X"

What's the wage bill for a couple of downtrodden public servants with no hope of promotion, and a single dingey office?

Google backs Bard to generate ads, which apparently improves creativity

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Please, just make it stop

Haven't we reached peak Normal-Thing-but-with-AI-Twist news stories yet?

Silly me - There's still months and months to go before that "novelty" wears off.

Capita has 'evidence' customer data was stolen in digital burglary

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Re: "... potentially affecting around 4 percent of Capita’s server estate ..."

Or, maybe, damn near ALL the servers for specific contracts? I wonder which ones?

Back in the day, C-word contracts were typically siloed from each other, separated from pretty much everything except the mothership (I don't know if anything's changed since things went all cloudy...) It certainly made things nice and simple when it was time to wind a contract down and they decided to do a bit of pruning. Snip! And you're all gone.

Smallsats + solar sails = Photos of exoplanets at 1970s digital camera resolution

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Re: Proper sailing spaceship????

Surely you can't steer if you don't have something to "push" against? A sailing boat can be steered because the keel & body of the boat meet the resistance of the water. Steering a solar sail would be more like trying to steer a hot air balloon - impossible to do in any direction other than the one that the wind is taking you, even with special sails for steering.

So in that sense, no, it wouldn't be possible to tack into the solar wind, because there's no resistance to space. However the idea of using orbital mechanics to "cheat" and slingshot closer to the sun is quite neat.

(Disclaimer - I am not a sailor and know bugger all about boats really, so am looking forward to being proved wrong and learning something new...)

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Clouds & Continents?

"High" resolution (i.e. greater than 1*1 pixels) photos of exoplanets would definitely be cool, but I think that concept art should be taken with a huge grain of salt.

Given enough time, surface features could theoretically be resolvable, even with the planet in question constantly rotating & slipping in and out of shadow, etc. But individual clouds...?

Brit cops rapped over app that recorded 200k phone calls

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Re: ACR - I used that. It's one of the few (2) apps I actually paid for.

IANAL, but I understand that in the UK it's perfectly legal to record telephone conversations without disclosing that you are doing so. There are limits to what you can do with those recordings, although if you make all parties aware beforehand ("This call may be recorded for Training & Monitoring purposes..."), then those limits are reduced.

There's no legal basis for crippling this functionality in the UK (or in many other jurisdictions, presumably), but Google decided to force this change on the entire world just to play it safe.

Brits start 'em young with 20% of tots 'owning' a smartphone

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Re: You might want to reconsider your overshare, Richard

Anyway, there's no flaming on this site, because we're all mature sensible adults here.


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But real news, properly presented, is a far cry from unregulated inanity. My earliest memory of similar would probably be the John Craven's Newsround coverage of a famine in Bangladesh in the 70's. Pretty harrowing stuff, but still important to know about, even at that age.

(Edit: But yes, there are limits of course. Truly evil stuff can't easily just be "talked through".)

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"by the time they are 12 it's something like 97 percent"

Hardly surprising. My kids' secondary school "encouraged" all parents to make sure their kids all had a smartphone - Partly for some of the on-line aspects of the coursework and also for "safety" reasons e.g. So that they could always contact someone in a real emergency, never get lost, that kind of thing (sigh).

That said, they were also never allowed to actually use them in school unless specifically instructed, which almost never happened.

Hey Siri, use this ultrasound attack to disarm a smart-home system

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Re: One C, one R

The flip side of that concept is known as a "Birmingham screwdriver" here in Blighty.

Parts of UK booted offline as Virgin Media suffers massive broadband outage

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Re: No service update

Customer Services - "We're not satisfied until you're not satisfied'

(from despair.com IIRC)

FTX cryptovillain Sam Bankman-Fried charged with bribing Chinese officials

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So... What's to stop Mum & Dad popping down to the store to buy a cheap laptop?

Are you ready to go all-in, head-first, on a laptop? ASUS's Zenbook Pro 16X asks for that commitment

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Re: Oops

And does anyone even want hardware shortcuts to apps?

I've lost count of the number of keyboards I've used that came with a set of dedicated keys for email, internet browser, etc. They never get used. Ever.

Student satellite demonstrates drag sail to de-orbit old hardware

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"if it was 30cm cube"

Was it though? Shirley 3u means 3 * (10cm*10cm*10cm). which would be just a ninth of the size of a 30cm cube.

Don't worry, that system's not actually active – oh, wait …

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..."when he'd finished his business in the test area"


I hope he washed his hands.

Service desk tech saved consultancy Capita from VPN meltdown, got a smack for it

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"brought the company name into disrepute."

Capita's name was mud long before the early 2010's when this tale took place

Havana Syndrome definitely (maybe) not caused by brain-scrambling energy weapons

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Symptoms are also consistent with... run of the mill Migraines

"dizziness, headache, fatigue, nausea, anxiety" - "tinnitus, visual problems, vertigo, and cognitive difficulties"

Textbook migraine symptoms.

Speaking as someone who gets combinations of the above 3-4 times a month, they have my sympathy, but it doesn't scream "conspiracy" to me.

Twitter rewards remaining loyal staff by decimating them

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Thank you El-Reg...

Appropriate use of "decimated". Go to the top of the class.

(I was going to award you top marks, 10/10, but that might be viewed as commentard-baiting)

PC tech turns doctor to diagnose PC's constant crashes as a case of arthritis

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Re: South don't work in the North

The moon is upside-down, Orion's sword points up, and the sun tracks the wrong way across the sky.

Something's definitely amiss down there.

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Re: South don't work in the North

Due to differences in the local electrical supply, presumably?

Gullible ol' me initially assumed you were referring to some effect of the Earth's magnetic field or similar. Duh.

I can't do that, Dave: AI drowns top sci-fi mag with story submissions

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Re: "...AI could turn writing from a serious craft into a cheap commodity"

Check out another (very) short short story: "Rejection Slip" by K.W. McAnn.

An author's manuscript, "The Last Man on Earth" is rejected by the publishers as they are over-stocked on non-fiction.

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Starting a year or two ago, I noticed the emergence of a style of IT troubleshooting "how-to" web pages that had clearly scraped the technical steps from another source, and then padded it with a lot of infuriating waffle, with a real "English is my second language" vibe.

I'd originally assumed that it was just lazy wannabe tech-gurus, with nothing new to contribute, but it seems likely now that they are completely auto-generated.

They can ruin your search results with identical copies of the same obvious solution to a problem, making the truly useful and obscure nuggets of info so much harder to find.

A tip for content filter evaluators: erase the list of sites you tested, don't share them on 100 PCs

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Re: Bulldog

The Anarchists *what?* Book?

Shocked, I tell you.

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Not on my watch...

We occasionally had to temporarily add some "interesting" sites to the whitelist during my time employed at a mental health hospital, to help facilitate treatment. The old adage that "there's a fetish for everything" is pretty close to the mark.

But we did have to tell one beardy doctor exactly where to go when he demanded that one patient have access to some scarily illegal stuff (to help wean them off it, apparently...). Even if he had come back with a court order granting full exemption (he didn't), I'd still have said No way.

If you have a fan, and want this company to stay in business, bring it to IT now

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Similar situation here, many years ago. But, through trial-and-error, we discovered that using fans to blow the hot air out cooled things down far more quickly than using fans to blow cold air in.

That's not a TP-Link access point, it's a… vacuum?

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That's called "Plausible Deniability"

"Four suction modes and a tissue dispenser" would be so much more difficult to justify.

Cloudflare engineer broke rules – and a customer's website – with traffic throttle

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"Blame Free Culture"

That's a phrase that gets misused too often by companies. Hopefully not in this case though.

I've only worked at one place that officially had a Blame Free Culture, and plenty of others that just naturally didn't feel the need to blame individuals for faults and errors unless it was genuinely deserved.

The place with the official policy used to go to a lot of effort to identify exactly who it was that we shouldn't all blame, and made sure that everyone new who it was that wasn't getting blamed. They even held high-level meetings to discuss the individuals who weren't being blamed, because, officially, they were so caring and people-focused.

Glasgow staff form UK's first Apple union after historic vote

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The Secret...?

UK employment laws that can and will bite companies where it hurts if they break them?

McDonald's pulls plug on Wi-Fi, starts playing classical music to soothe yobs

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Re: Even them playing classical music ...

A couple of decades ago anyway, the main McD's in Melbourne city centre actually had a secure sharps-bin attached to the wall in the gents.

Oh, 07734! Internet Archive debuts vintage calculator emulator

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Re: [TI & HP] were allowed into college entrance exams and various standardized tests

* Casio FX-85N *

(Courtesy of a lazy lunch-hour & Google images)

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Re: [TI & HP] were allowed into college entrance exams and various standardized tests

I can vividly picture the school-sanctioned calculator that we were allowed for 'A' level exams in the Midlands back in the late 80's, but I can't for the life of me remember the make or model. The exam boards were understandably strict when it came to preventing cheating in exams using new-fangled "programmable" technology, so this model wasn't programmable or have graphics (neither of which would have been allowed back then).

It was possible to store eight (or ten?) twelve-digit values in variables/registers though, and a creative person <cough!> could hide some quite useful "memory aids" encoded into the 100-ish numeric characters available.

Windows 10 paid downloads end but buyers need not fear ISO-lation

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Re: Bridge For Sale

If there are still hangers-on out there who want to upgrade to Win10, it can still be done for "free".

When it first rolled out, Windows 10 was officially available as a free upgrade for a year, for users with valid WIn7 or Win8 installations. But after that year passed, Microsoft never shut down the free upgrade path - and it's still possible to upgrade for free even now* (well, this time last year anyway, which was when I gave it a go)

There are plenty of How-to guides online to step you through the process.

A legal grey-area maybe (Or not - heh), but Microsoft are definitely turning a blind eye.

Bringing cakes into the office is killing your colleagues, says UK food watchdog boss

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Re: What a load of cobblers

Dieting really is cruel if you're addicted to overeating. You have to both eat AND be in control of your addiction 24/7. Smokers and drinkers ultimately have the option to go cold turkey, but you can't just "give up" food.

How many recovering alcoholics would manage to stay sober if they had to have a drink each day, I wonder?

Surely you can't be serious: Airbus close to landing fully automated passenger jets

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Re: reducing the crew cost of operating the plane

Just rename the Autopilot to "Full Self Driving Beta", to manage expectations...?

Games Workshop once again battles scariest monster of all: ERP gone wrong

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Sounds like they should have used a decent ERP system to manage the accounting, procurement, project management, risk management, compliance, supply chain operations, etc, needed to implement a decent ERP system...

Scientists tricked into believing fake abstracts written by ChatGPT were real

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"Is it not the point of the journals...?"

Hah - It is, but only in the same sense that it's the point of estate agents to provide "quality" housing.

With enough people providing a product, and enough people queuing up to buy it, they can just sit back and let the fees roll in from both sides. Minimal effort required.

Robot seal tested for stress relief on pretend Mars mission

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A seal?

Sounds a bit random for a space mission.

How about a Skipper the Eye-child robot instead?

That NHS England patient data platform procurement, FDP, is live. And worth up to £480m

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Re: It's just another asset to be sold

@Ali Dodd - You are "H", and I claim my £5.

2002 video streaming patent holder sues Amazon and Twitch

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Re: Patently

#1 Last time I looked, anyone can file a patent. You don't need to be rich.

#2 "if the adventure goes tits up, they can do some patent trolling". It's not "patent trolling" when you defend your rights to your own IP, as per your example.

India partners with private company to sell ads to commuters via railway Wi-Fi

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more than 1.1 million unique users...

“RailTel’s Public Wi-Fi network records more than 1.1 million unique users per day."

But how many of those actually manage to stay connected for more than a few seconds?

And how many of those are genuine interactive connections, as opposed to auto-connects to a known network despite the phone never leaving the users pocket?

My experience of similar Free WiFi on UK public transport is that it's invariably shit and not worth the frustration. How does that compare to India's setup?

Forget the climate: Steep prices the biggest reason EV sales aren't higher

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"a strong desire to reduce refueling costs"

Numbers please.

For those of us who don't have access to free electricity, are EVs actually cheaper to run, mile for mile?