* Posts by davews

7 posts • joined 16 Dec 2016

Talk about a ticket to ride... London rail passengers hear pr0n grunts over PA system


"The three-minute journey from Wandsworth Town to Clapham Junction takes place on a stretch of rail laid between 1838 and 1863. It's not known where the passenger embarked and even less clear where the announcer or driver, er, got off but Shepherd's Bush, Cockfosters and Mudchute are all very possible."

Not content with the chap who posted this claiming it was on a tube train, El Reg now puts more nonsense in its article. The train in question, a series 458 or possibly 707, would be on the Reading, Windsor or Addlestone service (third rail 750V). The line may have been opened in 1838 but I would hope the rail itself was laid much more recently. The driver doesn't normally have access to the public announcement system, the guard does. Yes, he may have done something irregular in his guards van. Much more likely the whole thing has been made up by Mr Brunton to moan about SWR (or was it TFL and he edited the wrong tape?). Shepherds Bush, Cockfosters etc are quite definitely not possible stops on that line. And judging by the few people in the carriage it was hardly filmed on a Friday morning near Clapham Junction, the trains are always jam packed there.

Just the small matter of the bill for scrapping Blighty's old nuclear submarines: It's £7.5bn


HMS Courageous in Devenport is open for public tours, excellent. All the dangerous bits have been made safe (you are not shown round the reactor...). The other decommissioned ones shown in the pictures are parked nearby and presumably of no safety concern to the visiting public.

BlackBerry Key2: Clickier, nippier, but how many people still want a QWERTY?


That is not a QWERTY keyboard since it has the keys in vertical columns and is totally unusable by those of us who touchtype. And yes, my fingers are far too big for touch screen keypads.

UK industry mouthpiece wants 'near-universal' broadband speeds of 30Mbps by 2020


I am 1.5 miles from the exchange on a suburban estate. I get a rock solid 8Mbs ADSL+. It is perfectly fast enough for me and although I do virtually no streaming I don't imagine I would have issues. If I paid more money I could get 30Mbs fibre (cabinet 1km away) or Virgin cable at whatever speed they do. But why pay more when what I have is enough. I agree with others above, many households simply don't need 20Mbs, even less faster.

Avast blocks the entire internet – again


Despite the headline it seems this only effected a VERY small number of users who after a reinstall have sorted out their problem. I have been using the latest version for the past week and have absolutely no issues (but I don't use their web shield). Maybe El Reg should check their facts before producing articles like this.

Our Sun's been using facial scrub: No spots for two weeks


The article has a lot of things wrong with it. Firstly, as pointed out, a small sunspot appeared on 22nd March to end the spot free period. Secondly, sunspots are not counted individually, rather the leading figure is the number of spot groups and the second the total number of spots - for instance, if you have 4 spots in three groups the sunspot number will be 34. The sunspot number on the date shown in the photo was actually 227, which could be 27 spots in 20 groups or some other similar combination - there certainly are not 110 spots on that day.

Thirdly, the table shows smoothed sunspot numbers for each month based on a 13 month cycle - so the figure of 110 given for February 2014 is calculated based on the actual figures between February 2013 and February 2014. This is why figures after mid 2016 are shown as estimates and those in 2018 estimates based on the estimates.

There is nothing unusual in having a spotless sun at this point of the solar cycle, it has happened many times over the 24 11 year cycles since we started recording them - but this solar minimum, like its maximum, looks set to be much lower than average.

Will Wikipedia honour Jimbo's promise to STOP chugging?


Endless begging emails

I donated to WP some years ago before I knew the situation. Since then every year I get a stream of begging emails from Jimmy which seem to get more and more desperate. I do donate to various charities but the tone of these means WP is no longer on my list.


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