* Posts by W.S.Gosset

1471 posts • joined 18 Nov 2016

Technology doesn’t widen the education divide. People do that

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> And I really wouldn’t want to drive across a bridge designed by someone who’d never really wanted to be an engineer.

Avoid Australia in future, then. Our current Curriculum designers have formally stated that maths is racist, and that emphasising the idea of a correct answer to a maths problem is white supremacy. Their current curriculum seeks to correct and eliminate these problems.

Not a joke or sarcasm, by the way.

If it were possible to evade facial-recognition systems using just subtle makeup, it might look something like this

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Re: "trained observers may be wise to your caper and stop you"

> You can still wear any garment you wish in civilized countries, can't you ?

Oh DAHling, how deLIGHTfully naif! One wouldn't be seen DEAD in last season's styles.

RIP Sir Clive Sinclair: British home computer trailblazer dies aged 81

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Ave, Clive.

This is AUKUS for China – US, UK, Australia reveal defence tech-sharing pact

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> I didn't hear any whinging and whining

Then you need to start paying attention.

Although "over-the-top threats and demands that [insert country name here] immediately start doing what they're TOLD" is closer to accuracy.

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Re: Love the misdirection in the title.....

"Words are violence"

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Re: The only credible regional threat Australia faces is China

Errr...no. Australia has been singled out by China since September 2019 to serve as "the chicken" in its bullying/weasel-attacks on the Pacific Asian nations. And yes, they have even threatened to invade Australia.

The reference, btw, is the well-known traditional Chinese proverb: "kill the chicken to scare the monkeys". Ie, single out and go psycho on one party in a group, in order to intimidate all the other parties in the group.

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Re: The French

Is that a US jallon or an Imperial jallon?

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just offering this summary as a public service for busy people:



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Re: Upside-down

We tie the anchor to the top of the periscope.

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Actually a big problem with the France contract was that they had quietly removed virtually all the intended local skills-transfer and even simple building work, out of Australia and back to France.

You appear to be clueless and mal-informed about _everything_ you're ranting about, not just China.

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Re: Tiananmen, Hong Kong, Uyghurs

You really don't know the first thing about China, do you?

Catch of the day... for Google, anyway: Transatlantic Cornwall cable hauled ashore

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Gave me a grin

Not so much "Grace Under Fire" as "Grace Under Water"

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Re: Eeyore ba gum!

My favourite are the dirty great road signs near London saying "SECRET NUCLEAR BUNKER -- THIS WAY"

Ex-DJI veep: There was no drone at Gatwick during 2018's hysterical shutdown

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Re: Stealth cloak, anybody?

I developed a stealth cloak myself, once.

No idea where the bloody thing is.

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Re: Follow the money

> There are laws that cover every eventuality already

E.g., "No visible means of support"

Criminalises the use of all drones, already.

Also helicopter pilots. So hide your helicopter if you see another such debacle in the offing. No sense asking for trouble.

NYC subway SNAFU probably caused by someone turning it off accidentally, say reports

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Re: Who dun it?

Ah-haaaaaa. Silly me.

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Re: Who dun it?

I'm more scratching my head re the intended purpose of a Peter Mount. Does one wear it to attach equipment? Or does one affix it to a wall or desk in order to display detachable items or grisly trophies?

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Re: Who dun it?

They're made out of Molybdenum?

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Over time, they're re-implementing the tracks and trains in Rust.

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OK then, the next "Dr Who Me" column.

The Register speaks to one of the designers behind the latest Lego Ideas marvel: A clockwork solar system

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On a shelf? Fie on you, sir! For shame! You're a grown man!

On your DESK.

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The Transit of Venus, on the other hand, is a veritable piece of piss. Merely lean on the fast-forward button.

If only Captain Cook had had this. He could have avoided all that messy sailing. Just stayed at home and played with Lego. "What are you doing, James T.?" "SCIENCE!!"

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Brisbane, Australia

I would assume and hope, therefore, that close examination of the planets in this Absolute Awesomeness will reveal that they are all upsidedown.

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My home town! Woo!

Linus Torvalds admits to 'self-inflicted damage' with -Werror as Linux 5.15 rc1 debuts

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!! You mean : hyperPoliticallyCorrect, shurely

Biggest takeaway from pandemic lockdowns for Microsoft? Teams stopped talking to each other

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Re: Teams vs. Slack

> can make a vas deferens

In which case, if you've had a vasectomy, avoid using Slack or it might undo all your hard work.

Tech widens the educational divide. And I should know – I'm a teacher in a pandemic

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I've taught, myself, many moons ago.

A thousand up-votes.

Running on empty, out of battery, power draining... three things the UK government definitely isn't. Oh no

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Re: Running on empty?

Well, the Brit transmission industry-boys have stated that the retail transmission grid will need to triple in capacity to cope with 100% elec.car use. So factor that humongous cost in as well. (Just the _maintenance_ of existing grid capacity is one third of current bills, so I shudder to think what it'll cost to have that much capital cost rolled in on top too.) But demand-management wise, they'll probably just throttle back all houses they see are charging cars (from their centrally-reported realtime current-demand). So they won't actually full charge anyway.

SmartMeters are specifically designed to provide and implement this capability, in case you've ever wondered why it's the _industry_ that's so gung-ho about such an expensive countrywide rollout: they are remote controls for your house. Initial motivation was just profit, but they can also be used defensively.

"Wind & Solar" is a bit of a furphy, btw. 85% of the UK's renewable energy is actually from chopping down and woodchipping forests to burn in very very VERY dirty versions of coal plants. Not sure what the current numbers are for the US but a few years ago, they were running at just under 60% from woodchips.

Australia gave police power to compel sysadmins into assisting account takeovers – so they plan to use it

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Re: 2018, 5 eyes

If you're physically in the EU, 100% of your ex-country internet traffic is handed over to the NSA by iirc Denmark for a fairly tidy sum. This includes all UK traffic routed out via continental Europe.

This drag sail could prevent spacecraft from turning into long-term orbiting junk. We spoke to its inventors ahead of launch

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Reverse-spider technique

Conductive in magnetic field.

So they'll be doing a reverse spider* manoeuvre. Nice.


* Spiders fly by spinning electrically-charged silk which interacts with the earth's magnetic field. In case you've ever wondered why the silk doesn't just fall down plop on the ground.

First formally identified by Charles Darwin aboard the Beagle way out at sea: he noted spiders arriving from nowhere, then later taking off again and when they did, the strand stood out from the boat rather than in direct line with the wind. He suspected the cause was the well-known local deviation ships make in the local magnetic field, even wooden ones, and that the silk was charged. He turned out to be right.

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"which is made out of fluorinated polyimide"

...so it won't get cavities

Google's newest cloud region taken out by 'transient voltage' that rebooted network kit

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They didn't say spike, they just said voltage. Given Victoria routinely has to shut down industry *cough* "Demand Management is the bold new power industry tool for a renewable future!" as a result of leaning hard into renewable energy, I personally suspect a voltage DROP rather than a spike. Sustained for longer than Google's setup anticipated in a First-World country, or just not caught/detected for the same reason.

Pity they didn't run South Australia's tactic. After the last stuffup there, SA loudly announced a Tesla battery and decent backup despatchable power. The battery had IIRC 2.5mins power supply (deliverable in a dribble over 75mins). The despatchable power was a trick taken from EUK windfarms* : they built a dirty great diesel park. A$415m to burn 80,000 litres of diesel an hour and sustain the Green Revolution.


* (The EUK grant-farms tricked the bureaucrats by saying they wanted their despatchable power reqts to be technology agnostic. The govt assumed they meant not cutting off future innovation from the flow of subsidy and cheered+implemented the changed wording ; "imagine the surprise" when they just turned round and whacked in diesel.)

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Re: Harden the F up

Depends how you cook them.

Internet Explorer 3.0 turns 25. One of its devs recalls how it ended marriages – and launched amazing careers

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Second antitrust, not first

> IE 3.0 indirectly led to Microsoft's first big set of antitrust troubles

No, that bizarrely-limited "prosecution" by the DoJ was the SECOND antitrust action vs Microsoft. And it was bizarrely-limited as a deliberate tactic to avoid getting finessed like they were the first time.

For those who don't know, MS was *convicted* of antitrust breaches (in 1994 IIRC). They were due to be broken up (Sherman Act's only real remedy is The Nuclear Option), but got leave to appeal and managed to do so on a technical matter which by its nature required the Court to NOT consider any evidence. They lost the 4 year court case resoundingly but won that appeal in less than a single day.

DoJ was ropeable. And if you'd scratched your head at the later antitrust action re something so apparently tiny as the bloody browser, well, that's why. Having another go but with massive scope limitation in a bid to avoid another last-minute finesse by MS.

In Search of Lost Time: GNU Grep 3.7 released with fix for 'extreme performance degradation'

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Re: So.....I'm using 3.6......

$ grep --version | grep 'grep.*grep' | cat | tail

grep (GNU grep) 3.6

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Re: So.....I'm using 3.6......

$ grep --version | grep grep

grep (GNU grep) 3.6

Dallas cops lost 8TB of criminal case data during bungled migration, says the DA... four months later

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Take II

> a data migration exercise carried out at the end of the 2020-21 financial year deleted vast amounts of data from a network drive.

And that was just an Exercise. Wait till they do it for real!

Microsoft responds to PrintNightmare by making life that little bit harder for admins

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Re: If only...

I think it's more in the line of being a lot cheaper to DO, since you don't have to pay the Licence Fees for postscript.

Certainly that was always the case up to at least the mid-00s.

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Re: Have they forgotten SysAdmin Appreciation Day so soon?

To be fair, it was 4 years ago.

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Re: If only...

Ahhh yes. The good old days of original/actual Mac OS.

The web was done right the first time. An ancient 3D banana shows Microsoft does a lot right, too

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Eunuch horn

As in, "To be as rare as"

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I was in academia at the time so was on the web almost as soon as it started. Only 1 website :)

I still have a copy of Mosaic 0.8 somewhere.

Alas, the Cambridge Coffee Pot is no more.

Scientists reckon eliminating COVID-19 will be easier than polio, harder than smallpox – just buckle in for a wait

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Re: Fairly worthless comparison

Sorry Doc, there are over 1.2 billion people using one treatment very successfully and more than half a billion using another even more successfully. Based on their numbers and event studies, we could have saved at least two thirds of the lives lost (and, anecdotally, eliminated Long Covid). It really is down to a toxic group of politics-obsessed idiots. See my note above re the Taiwan protocol.

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Re: Taiwan

> They tried something in an unprecedented situation.

And even identified a drug protocol which reduces deaths by two-thirds. Published it on 4th March 2020 iirc. 3 drugs, used in early stage (only).

Lunatic political gamesters have blocked its use in most Western countries, but Switzerland are using it. Dig up a graph of their (CH's) Case Fatality Rate and note 2 things:

A. the death rate's absolute value is bizarrely low ; and

B. a surreal spike in the middle where the death rate triples for 2 weeks then goes back to their low normal. What happened? The political mouth-frothers found out they were using the Taiwan protocol and scweamed and scweamed and scweamed and forced the Govt to ban it. Many unnecessary deaths later, the govt manned up and UNbanned it.

Pure science: event study. But unethical.

Most of India is using it; their CFR is _over_stated, but less than half of Australia's. We spend A$7,500/yr per person on healthcare, they spend US$73...

There's also another drug protocol came out about this time last year, even more effective: 86% reduction. Same political nuts are fighting it too. But Uttar Pradesh is using it with outstanding results, Goa used it to hammer Delta, and so did Mexico City. Indonesia _was_ using it until June when WHO forced them to stop. Have a look at a graph of their daily deaths and see if you can spot June 2021 without looking at the X-axis...

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Non-profit AstraZeneca

> While you can blame the companies for profiteering, that is what they are supposed to do.

Worth pointing out that AstraZeneca are explicitly selling their vaccine at Cost price.

To be clear: they intend to not make a profit from it.

They are doing some price differentiation between rich and poor countries so the rich subsidise the poor, but that's the extent of their variation from Cost Price.

Chinese espionage group targets Israel while suggesting the source could be Iran

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Re: This is normal

You shock me, sir.

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Now, if they'd called it FOCUSFNORD, no one would ever have noticed it.

Chocolate beer barred from sale after child mistakes it for chocolate milk

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Change it to Kilometre-o

Adults'll get it.

Alibaba fires manager accused of sexually assaulting colleague

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Re: The crackdown

amanfrommars would appear to have some competition...


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