* Posts by EBG

193 posts • joined 7 Nov 2016


CERN draws up shutdown plans to save energy


Ukraine is a (large) straw that broke the camel's back

but yes. At least in the UK, our energy policy has been very lacking. Government drank the Kool-aid of "it'll all be solved by having a Smart Grid and smart meter demand management." We've neglected nuclear, closed coal plant. So when the wind doesn't blow, all our eggs are in gas. And, to top it all, we've closed the strategic gas storage facilities.

This was always going to end in tears.

The crime against humanity that is the modern OS desktop, and how to kill it


yes ..

Exactly the way I work. No use for the desktop whatsoever. Apps opened by shortcuts, and default store to a common "scratch" folder.

Scientists use supercritical carbon dioxide to power the grid


OK .. now please tell us ....

... what is the pressure in the system, compared with that for existing steam turbines? At the temperatures of the run that they have done, and at the proposed future higher temperatures that would give the claimed 50% efficiency?

... what will that do to the reliability/maintainability of an actual industrial system?

Cloudflare explains how it managed to break the internet


same answer

that I give to those who are shocked that bitcoin mining consolidated into a few groups in China. Economics 101. That's what commodity supply chains do.

IBM's self-sailing Mayflower suffers another fault in Atlantic crossing bid


beats me

as to how this was ever deemed to conform to Col Regs rule 5. Or did it just get a free pass, just "because", along with "self drving" cars.

Quantum internet within grasp as scientists show off entanglement demo


can someone who knows about this help ?

OK - I understand quantum entanglement. In fact I understood it before it started getting called quantum entanglement. (It was the EPR paradox when I were a lad). So the result of observing one half of the entangled subsystem is that it then forces the other half into a known state

What I've not got my head around, and never seems to be explained, is how you use this for useful information transmission ? Thing is that the outcome of the first observation is random (quantum acausality). You can't decide what state you're forcing the remote half of the system into - you're stuck with whatever you're given.

Climate model code is so outdated, MIT starts from scratch


cruft upon cruft to many levels,

OK .. but .. is this the same climate science no -one is allowed to question because it is settled ?

Why the Linux desktop is the best desktop


file managers

There are multiple options for file managers, which you can install and play with. I like to use xfe [ Finally made the jump to Linux (Mint with xfce) 2 years ago, and not looked back. ]

Joint European Torus more than doubles fusion record with 59 megajoules


Re: really ?

What's being reported is an improvement by a factor of 2 over a 25 year period. That factiod, per se, to me is underwhelming. But I guess you're easily impressed.


Re: really ?

Did you think up that line all on your own ? Which facts given ATL I have missed out, then ?


just like

it always has been


Re: really ?

Pure hand-waving. What's been proven ? In particular what's been proven now, compared with whatever was proven at the 50% lower performance 25 years ago ? Please do tell.

Certified !? We're a long long way from any certifications.


really ?

10MW isn't nearly industrial scale. Power plants (e.g. the EPR) work at about the GW level.

Plus - industrial plants run 24/7. If it's taken 25 years to double the performance, we're looking at 10 sec operation in 2047 !

There may be fantastic work being done at JET, but this press release is seriously underwhelming.

Second Trojan asteroid confirmed to be leading our planet around the Sun


Re: XL5

That's the Webb, not an asteroid !


Re: XL5

Guessing - it's the L5 Lagrange point

James Webb Space Telescope has arrived at its new home – an orbit almost a million miles from Earth



and a lack of cooling wouldn't " trigger misleading signals", it would swamp the detector with thermal noise that would blot out signals at the strength they are looking for.

I criticised an el reg article a while back that had obviously be reworded by someone without a clue of the subject matter. This has the same feel to it.


Re: thank you

I carefully placed the words in 2 different sentences :-)


thank you

for a decent article on this landmark.

Unlike the UK "quality press". Who start by telling us it's the largest telescope ever (no qualification like space-borne) and go downhill from there. I'm look at you, The Guardian.

'IwlIj jachjaj! Incoming LibreOffice 7.3 to support Klingon and Interslavic


Looking at the difficulty of some languages, there's maybe a reason why languages go extinct?

Predictive Dirty Dozen: What will and won't happen in 2022 (unless it doesn’t/does)


Re: it's been ovious for some time

I think you're underestimating the level of disruption "they" are willing to countenance. They aren't the ones who will suffer.


it's been ovious for some time

2 things.

1. I was told by a politico friend back in the late 1990's that "car owners are going to be the next smokers". For those who don't believe in elitist conspiracies - there's one. This has take 20 odd years to become general public knowledge.

2. it's real. There's a parliamentary select committee report stating " private car ownership is incompatible with net zero" . And government is committed to net zero, so .. go figure.

Academics horrified that administration of Turing student exchange scheme outsourced to Capita


I'm no fan of Crapita

but the research councils aren't even academia marking its own homework. They're academia setting its own questions and not bothering with the marking. If they're having their wings clipped, then that's all to the good

Academics tell Brit MPs to check the software used when considering reproducibility in science and tech research


your downvotes are due to listing climate. That gets a free pass.


this is true

and it shows the need to professional interface layer between academic research science and policy. Sadly this function was vapourised in the UK in the 1990's. There is a bigger need than ever for a beefed up version of the traditional scientific civil service.

BOFH: So you want to have your computer switched out for something faster? It's time to learn from the master


Eh ?

You can download other browsers.

Seeing as everyone loves cloud subscriptions, get ready for car-as-a-service future



Just. No.

US Air Force chief software officer quits after launching Hellfire missile of a LinkedIn post at his former bosses


also my experince

I've done projects under good blokes who were on the MoD 2-year rolling postings. Provided, as you say, they defer to technical expertise, it can work well.

Green hydrogen 'transitioning from a shed-based industry' says researcher as the UK hedges its H2 strategy



the future isn't clear


kudos, sir

right down to the question setter messing up their grammar. It's / Its &' Choices is'

I've got a broken combine harvester – but the manufacturer won't give me the software key


Re: Ranchor is one of many people who doesn't truly own the products they pay for.

This. I've just retired from a job close to policy in that field. MaaS - mobility as a service.

Fastly 'fesses up to breaking the internet with an 'an undiscovered software bug' triggered by a customer



The internet was designed by people who didn't do Business Studies 101. Commodity supply chains naturally consolidate into oligopolies (typically 3 suppliers). Equally amusing to listen to the crypto libertarians complaining that BC mining is controlled by a handful of consortia.

Distorted light from ancient explosion when the Universe was 3 billion years old helps point astroboffins to intermediate black hole


Re: "electro-magnetic photons"

The whole piece reads like the author is out of his depth with the basics. The fine details of the research would be beyond most of us, but the gist is being conveyed in a way that jars.

Ministry of Defence tells contractors not to answer certain UK census questions over security fears



The "predict and provide is dead" line triggers me as well. AFAIK it's not just DoT - it's across the board in the public service delivery functions. And yes, it's a cop-out from an onus to deliver. Prediction and *perfect* provision is a red herring, and there is no excuse for abandoning " predict and do the most possible to provide".

Atheists warn followers of unholy data leak, hint dark deeds may have tried to make it go away



"A valid hypothesis must be provable one way or the other"

I suggest you read Popper. A scientific hypothesis is never provable, but must always be dis-provable. Capable of "refutation" was the phrase.

What's that, Lassie? Dogs show signs of self-awareness according to peer-reviewed academic study?


I think your post will be upvoted by the type of people who think that someone can see something with their own eyes, but if they are not a trained university researcher what they have seen is "anecdotal" and invalid. Notwithstanding that there is a vast number academic papers that peer reviewed but are still shyte - at least according to my wife who is a STEM reader (associate professor to west pondians).

Salesforce to buy Slack for $28bn in cash, shares – and vows to make it the new face of Customer 360


well parsed, sir.

US Air Force deploys robot security dogs to guard base


Re: Electronic sausages ?

Used to work at a site. W ?

EU says Boeing 737 Max won't fly over the Continent just yet: The US can make its own choices over pilot training


Yeh - blame the supplier !

due to a supplier of hydraulic valves not expecting a case where high temperature hydraulic fluid would be run through a sub-zero housing

You're designing the aircraft, you spec the component.

Google to end free unlimited online photo, vid storage, will eventually delete files if accounts go over their cap


no problem

IMAP synch gmail accounts in Thunderbird. Drag everything into local folders. Back up along with the rest of my data.

If you suddenly can't print to your HP Printer from your Mac, you're not alone: Code security cert snafu blamed


Re: HP

OK - agree. But who do you recommend ?

We bought a knockoff Lego launchpad kit from China for our Saturn V rocket so you don't have to


Re: That fits with

I'm guessing that's only true as they've excluded wild fish (+other ocean fauna) ?

Supermassive black hole turns unlucky star into spaghetti


yes or no ?

This article says that the supermassive black hole spaghettified an infalling star. The sidebar linked article " what would happen if Earth fell in" says that only normal black holes spaghettify and that with a supermassive BH, you fall inside the event horizon before the field gradient gets big enough.

Beware, drone fliers, of Scotland's black-headed gulls. For they will tear your craft from Mother Nature's skies


Re: Once upon and Lands End...

Calcium carbide sandwiches were the traditional offering. Must be illegal now.

Safety driver at the wheel of self-driving Uber car that killed a pedestrian is charged with negligent homicide


I agree

and I also doubt the the road accident investigators have the same (or, thinking about it, probably higher) level of expertise as air accident investigators, needed for investigating AV crashes

Tech ambitions said to lie at heart of Britain’s bonkers crash-and-burn Brexit plan


Re: Creating unicorns

Up-arrowed, but they are very different cultures. The shame culture means that they are driven to deliver even if the money is free from the state. I see little shame at the top in the UK.


please understand that the worst of this is ...

I've been around policy circles enough in the last few years that I know the "logic" here. The moon-on-a-stick flyboys manage to sell this to politicians because the attraction is that you can feck up as much as you want, and by hell are we fecking up, but absolutely no need to worry as AI / big data / Industry 4.0 / ...will come riding to the rescue.

IBM ordered to pay £22k to whistleblower and told by judges: Teach your managers what discrimination means


you may be right

M&A has always looked to me to be a 24/7 role.

I've got a head hunter on my case, and need to decide this weekend whether to go for 1 last big payday before retirement. It's a director position. Or not, do I still have the drive and energy? One thing I can't reasonably do is take the job and then tell them I want to work strictly 9-5.

NASA to stop using names like 'Eskimo Nebula' and 're-examine' what it calls cosmic objects


Re: maybe there is hope

Fair enough. But can we get them at least to pretend to be sane ?


maybe there is hope

Gratifying to see this kind of cr@p being called out for what it is BTL. Question is, how do we get the "leaders" is our society back in the sanity fold ?

As Brit cyber-spies drop 'whitelist' and 'blacklist', tech boss says: If you’re thinking about getting in touch saying this is political correctness gone mad, don’t bother


not what I pay my taxes for them to spend their time worrying about

sounds like they've got time on their hands, and are up for some "right-sizing"



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