* Posts by Bill

14 publicly visible posts • joined 21 Aug 2007

McKinnon loses extradition fight


@Anonymous Coward

Not that it matters but I am an expat-British.

All countries go through good and bad times. Britain is going through a bad time now mainly through lack of leadership and the electrorate choosing politicians who are "nice" in preference to those who are competent.

Regardless of whether you agree with the extradition or not, it is beholden on Britian to fulfill it's obligations. This is the honourable thing to do. No-one forced British politicians to sign the Extradition Treaty of 2003 with America but now they have we have a duty to see it through.

Britain should, though, renegotiate the whole deal as it is unfair and unjust.


@James O'Shea

Actually, I think you will find that William Joyce (aka Lord Haw Haw - along with at least three other broadcasters as the alias was applied to almost any broadcaster from Germany using English at that time) was tried under the Treason Act of 1945.

A Government does not have to search for an obscure law to try people with when they can make them up as they go along!

I also agree, he should have accepted the plea bargain.



I beg to disagree.

With only knowing what is in the press and none of the details I would still suggest there is enough prima facie evidence to ensure that extradition would have occured under the rules of the 1972 extradition treaty.

Bear in mind this, if all of this happened in Britian Gary McKinnon would still face trial. Why, because enough prima facie evidence suggests that he committed a crime. The court case would then decide if this is true or not.

Under the 1972 Extradition Treaty McKinnon would face extradition if the prima facie evidence is sufficient to warrant a criminal trial.

It seems to me that you are mixing emotion with facts. I too dislike the 2003 Extradition Treaty as being inordinately weighted in favour of the American Interests and not British Interests. It is highly unfair and therefore the Government that agreed to it were not acting in British interests but that of America. That to my mind is incomprehensibly incompetent and verging on a form of treason on the British Governments behalf. The Americans have acted in their interests as they should be expected to do.

However, Gary McKinnon admitted to illegal access of computer networks. The American Authorties assert that damage was done. The court case would be to ascertain the verasity of that ascertion. America do not need to prove that damage was done just present evidence that, on the face of it (that is what prima facie means) the damage was linked to the illegal access.



...and four spelling errors in my last post. I am disgusted with myself.....


Anonymous Coward

Oh how tiresome of you Anonymous.

The Extradition Treaty of 2003 didn't exist but the Extradition Treaty of 1972 did. Under the 1972 treaty Gary McKinnon could have been extradited given prima facie evidence against him. Note that it is prima facie evidence not absolute evidence of the crime.

As he has admitted the crime he would have been extradited.



Excuse me, but the guy broke the law.

Extradition is then left to the courts to decide within the restrictions and interpretations of the law of the land and it's international obligations.

If he didn't want to be extradited he shouldn't have commited the crime. He is no different from any other person who breaks into some-ones house or business.

British boffins perfect process to make any item '100% waterproof'

Paris Hilton


It is touching how the Gortex advertising has made such an impression on everyone. Gortex says it is breathable but after 20 odd years of climbing and mountaineering I can assure everyone that there is no disernable difference between Goretex (or any other membrane treated fabric) and PU Nylon.

The real difference nowadays is most good jackets are lined and that stops the clammy feel that rainproof kit used to have though at the expense of weight.

Try spending a night in a Goretex bivvy bag and see how wet the sleeping bag is in the morning even without rain.

Paris because of sleeping bags

Research: Wind power pricier, emits more CO2 than thought


Dinorwig Power Station, Llanberis

The Dinorwig Power Station was built with a specific purpose, it helps deliver quick and copious amounts of electricity, within seconds, to the grid to cope with peaks in demand.

It is very expensive electricity as the energy used to pump the water to the upper lake is greater than is gained from the generators when the same water is allowed to fall to the lower lake. Therefore, to store energy to cope with calm days would significantly lessen the power generation potential from wind farms especially if calm conditions are frequent.

Wind generation cannot deliver the UK's power requirements. Even if we deployed wind farms from Land's End to John O'Groats the resulting output would not be sufficient to reliably deliver the required power.

As to predicting wind strength, thats a giggle, look what happened to Texas a few months back when a sudden, unexpected dip in wind generation coincided with an upswing in usage. A disaster very narrowly averted.

Therefore wind can only represent a fraction of our power generating capacity. See "Without Hot Air" that was quite nicely reviewed by El Reg last week.

Given that we are left with other renewables, tidal is my favourite but that has limited scope, fossil fuels (increasingly expensive) but the greeny brigade do not like Co2 or nuclear. As far as I can see the solution is a one horse race.

Rootkits on routers threat to be demoed


Admin Crednetials

JohnG got in before me, if you have the admin credentials you pwn the device anyway. Now if he can plant the rootkit without the admin login then I am impressed.

UK's tallest bovine soars to 6ft 6in


The IT Angle

Anonymous Coward>

> the huge amounts of bullshit, what's the IT angle?

The it in bullshit possibly?

Windows Vista update 'kills' USB devices


Still going!

I have two machines running Vista. One box, an HP machine, running 32bit Vista Business and one, a Home Built box, running Vista Ultimate 64 Bit. Both boxes have been patched, both running without a glitch.

To be honest, the big home built box (8GB RAM, Core Duo etc) runs VMware and XP in a Virtual Machine. I use that for most critical apps but all games and other software I expect to have a problem with is run in Vista with no problems

I did, though, have lots of driver problems (none available) early on when I installed Vista first but this has recitifed itself over the months.

As to Vista being worse than other OS's, not really, I use FreeBSD a lot rather than Linux because why have a Unix-like system when you can have the real deal that is much more stable and user friendly. FreeBSD is great for certain aplications but so is Windows, even Vista. I deal with many Vista boxes during the course of my working week and I honestly do not have much of a problem with it.

Just my tuppeny worth.

Vista SP1 downloaders bite back


For Gods Sake

Having spent 30 years in the IT industry it still gets to me why people expect an OS too work on every single permutation of hardware regardless of age, market penetration or quality of support. The only relatively stable operating systems have been those on proprietary hardware such as the IBM mainframe.

Wake up people, MS does a reasonable job at making complex software run on a myriad of different systems. Few would do it better and still offer the choice. Now I will get back to my FreeBSD system.

Sir Edmund Hillary dies at 88


The First Man Too.........

Sir Edmund hillary was, no doubt, a great man and consumate mountaineer. As to the first man issue, it really is a facile question.

Any climber will tell you that a pair of climbers work together to complete a climb, one is dependent on the other so to complete any ascent is a team effort.

Indeed, back in 1953 Everest was conquered using a climbing technique that is best described as "laying siege" rather than the more light weight "Alpine" style that is used today. Supplies were hauled up pre-roped routes to progressively higher camps on the mountain until enough supplies had been positioned high enough on the mountain to allow for a summit attempt. This is how the "tourist" climbs of Everest happen today.

In this regard the whole expedition can be said to have climbed Everest as it was a team effort that put Hillary and Tenzing on top of the summit.

More modern equipment, fitness regimes and food supplies allow for a more rapid ascent with less pre-positioning of supplies.

This is not to demean Hillary's or Tenzing's effort but each, I am sure, would have acknowledged the efforts of the whole expedition in giving them the opportunity to complete the climb. That said, it is of no surprise to me, having climbed in New Zealand, that it was a New Zealander that completed the ascent with Tenzing.

Sir Hillary was a great man, an inspirational figure and a gentleman. He devoted his life working to improve the lot of the Nepalese Sherpas and they will long remember him as will the Kiwis.

Climate change: looking for a haystack, not a needle


Climate Forecasting

While it is true that trends can be forecasted in coupled, non-linear, chaotic systems it sort of relies on observation.

To take your example of the radioactive material that decays after an hour. If this was observed through experimentation and the experiment methodologies and results retested and peer reviewed then one can quite happily forecast that the half life will be 30 minutes.

In climate science, direct observations and measurements (with varying degrees of accuracy) only exist for a few hundred years in a few locations for any particular indicator be it Sea level change, rain fall, temperature etc. All other, longer term measurements are indirect and, therefore, open to varying levels of interpretation.

If the article is supposed to support the forecasting of the climate through the use of computer modelling then the author better explain on what observational criteria he is basing his belief that those models are accurate. Indeed, few, if any, models even represent what we know has happened, let alone what is to come.

All we can really say with any level of certainty is that global warming is occuring (which isn't altogether surprising given we are entering an interglacial) and that the world warms and cools depending on factors that have yet to be determined.