* Posts by OFSO

6 publicly visible posts • joined 29 May 2017

We know it's hard to get your kicks at work – just do it away from a wall switch powering anything important


An unfortunate misprint

After one of a crowd of visitors hit the emergency power-off button on the wall in our Flight Dynamics room, a sign was put up which read "Please do not press the Bottom". Whether it had the desired effect I can't say but fair enough: we did have some lovely secretaries working there, and one was often tempted.

US immigration uses Google Translate to scan people's social media for bad posts – Er, don't do that, says everyone else


Re: add a disclaimer that translated text may not be accurate

Although speaking and comprehending the languages, for written work I regularly use Google translate between English, Catalan, French and German. The first three are no problem: its the German with its weird grammatical structure which doesn't work well. Putting the verb at the end was not a good idead.

" Dear friends and relatives I must today announce to everyone to our great sorrow that after a long illness and despite much suffering, our grandfather has himself shot.....

Don't let your dreams be dreams! Itty-bitty space shuttle to ride into orbit on a Vulcan Centaur


Very similar to the European Space Agency's "Hermes" project, which was dropped in the design phase as it was too small. A great deal of money was invested even so and a lot of useful research undertook.. Wonder what happened to the paperwork ? Last I heard it was to be archived in Italy.

Croydon school rolling in toilet roll after Brexit gift deemed unfit for the Queen's Anus Horribilis


We have to bring our own.....

...the Fitness Centre which I use when in Spain has had the toilet paper dispenser removed from the men's changing room and replaced by a notice saying "bring your own paper" Perhaps the Germans could take pity on us ?.

You know that silly fear about Alexa recording everything and leaking it online? It just happened

Black Helicopters

Re: 'I physically disabled the built in microphone'

I never do searches on any device using google, but use an alternative which protects my identity.

However I'd suggest to anyone here owning a smartphone a simple test you might do. With voice recognition turned off, try having a conversation about some product within hearing distance of your phone. Then see if one or more adverts turns up on your phone, etc, which relates to your previous conversation. Well ?

BA's 'global IT system failure' was due to 'power surge'


Only one way to do it - and that is the right way.

1) The European Space Operations Centre has two independent connections to the German national grid - one entered the site at one end, one at the other. In addition a massive genset was hired for weeks surrounding critical ops, with living accommodation for the operator. (Yes it was that large).

2) A backup copy of all software and data files was made every day at midnight, encompassing the control centre and the tracking telemetry & command station main computers (STAMACS) spread around the world..

In my 25 years there I only remember one massive failure, which is when an excavator driver dug up the mains supply cable - in the days when there was only one power feed. In fact that incident is why there are two power connections today. Maybe someone here will correct me but I do not remember any major computing/software outages lasting more than an hour, before the system was reloaded and back on line.

Of course we were not trying to cut costs and maximise profits.