Re: Infernal Affairs
Upvote for the "Man who though his wife was a hat" reference.
83 posts • joined 15 Feb 2007
A couple of psychologists did research into bank investment bonuses. They found small performance bonuses (compared to salary) improved work, but large bonuses only encouraged the worker to work for the bonus (usually by being less ethical or careful). When presented with this research, bank bosses were fascinated and agreed with the findings. The researchers then pointed out that the bosses were in the same group of over-bonused workers. The big-wigs decided they were quite trustworthy and the bonuses had no effect on their behaviour... Since that study, this article suggests that virtually all bonus effects are negative ones...
"THIS IS A STICK UP! Gimme all the god damn veg you have.... Yeah, open the fridge! I wanna see all the green go in this bag! Wait, is that cabbage? Fuck that shit.... I want the zucchini, the cucumbers, the bananas. None of this cabbage smelling shit. What you say? Bananas are a fruit? Well aren't you a college-going MF? If it can go in your ass, I want it. Now get your ass in there!"
That was an entirely different type of Fruit Pulp Fiction....
As a user of NoScript, I'm fed up of shopping list length domains I have to allow just to get a video working on a website for exactly this reason. It's all very well using Noscript to try and keep my browser secure, but when you need to enable 3 dozen domains just to get a page to display properly, it kind of loses the point.
This law was brought in post 911, and the amount seized? 2.5 BILLION in one program alone, just in cash, from people WHO WEREN'T CHARGED WITH A CRIME. It's basically legalised robbery by the cops, and the proceeds go to who? The police, for 'law enforcement purposes'. This apparently can include buying new coffee machines... It's a nice racket!
I have a rather fun problem on my relatively new IBM win 10 laptop which I haven't managed to figure out. It boots up, and then after some random amount of time stops accepting left clicks and keyboard input. I can still move the mouse and get right-click menus, but left click and typing doesn't work. I can also press ctrl-atl-delete to get to that screen, and then going to the task manager seems to clear up the problem, but it's bugging the hell out of me. I've tried searching for the problem on the net but come up blank so far.
And people who write focus grabbing dialogues should be shot. A flash on the task bar is all that is needed. Also, those annoying startup windows which come up on top of everthing else and usually can't be dismissed should be shot too. I don't need to know I started an app, just showing the window is sufficient than you....
But I don't think I got an answer. I wondered if anyone new of any long term damage that might occur, and how much brighter screens would have to be to damage an eye. We know looking at the sun even for a few moments can permanently damage it, and a brother of a friend once went blind for 3 days after doing some welding without a mask (surprise) but I imagine it's hard to do qualitative studies because of the ethical problems involved in blinding people no matter how temporary.
As am I. I drive for an hour each way to work every day, and virtually every other day I witness, or I am nearly a victim of, some insane manoeuvre some idiot tries to pull on the roads in Sydney. Literally things I would never even think of trying in busy rush hour traffic seems to be common place here. People going through red lights at speed, general racing of each other, swerving across 3 lanes, being cut up regularly, having people pull out in front of me, tailgating, oncoming cars turning right in front of my car so that I have to slam on my brakes are just some of the things I see every day. My car, which I bought brand new in 2008, has been hit 3 times, once by the neighbour opposite as he rolled down his drive into the road, once by a lady going through a red light, and once parked in a car park, and now has a 'if this car is hit again it's a write off' plaque in it. I seriously started getting life insurance for the first time as I wasn't sure how long I'd last. A friend of mine who was a 25 year-old young mum was killed by a disqualified driver who was doing 100km/s in a 60 zone while drunk and got 3 years which would equate to 18 months. Every day there are calls for people to be more responsible while driving as deaths are an everyday occurrence. I had thought it was just me, but conferring with my colleagues seems to reveal the same viewpoint. I don't remember it ever being this bad in the UK. Shocking.
The main reason they seem to have died is a massive con----struction job on the part of their parent company according to the article pointed to by the Reg:
It seems they only wanted them from Woolies to put them on the stock market and turn a 20 mill investment into a 520 mill payday...
I don't know why only Chris has mentioned Serif's other packages, Photoplus and Drawplus. I use PP as a PS replacement and it pretty much has everything PS does with a very PS like interface for only 80 quid. The two notable missing features are, for me, PDF import (which you can do with Inkscape, which I love, and Gimp, which I don't love as much, just because of the UI) and non-importing of PSD text as text, which only one package seems to do. That package is Photoline, which seems to be very full featured and which I'm thinking about switching to, just for this text import.
Just about everything else I've tried (and I've tried a lot) are missing more features.
I completely agree, this was a stupid greedy move they thought they'd try and then found out people weren't going to stand for it and so had to back down. Not an ethical move... It's annoying that people think it's good of them to back down when being good would have been paying their contributors without having to go through this. Especially when other artists have had the threat of having their music removed from itunes if they didn't agree.
Apple have been complete cocks, nuff said.
Seems to be a worthy successor taken into the 21st century. Everything is non-destructive, brush strokes, layer adjustments, everything apparently. I haven't tried it yet but some friends have recommended it and it's only $100 so I'm thinking about picking it up as a replacement for Photoplus which was the closest to Photoshop in UI I'd found.
Some other notables are Krita (Free), Howler or Photoline.
The thing is, physical locks need physical access to break them. With crypto locks, the thief/spy can be on the other side of the planet, get past all the border control you have and right into your bedroom without going anywhere. With the same hole in the crypto, they can access everyone's data who uses that crypto virtually all the time, whereas it'd take centuries to break into all those physical houses, find their credit cards etc.
I second that WTF... We need encryption to be more secure not less. Say I want to protect the valuables in my house. Physical crooks first need to get into my country and to my address, then break into the house and not set off the alarms, then find my valuables before the police arrive, and spend credit cards before they get cancelled.
Cyber criminals don't have to be in the same country, can look up where I bank and details about me, my business details, my family, my communications with anyone, and have access to millions of homes to do the same if we have no encryption. This kind of criminality is a thousand times more likely to happen than me getting blown up by a terrorist. How many people have had identity fraud or credit card fraud occur to them compared to terrorism?
I mean... DUH!
I know a lady involved in giving evidence to the Senate about this fraud, and the company she worked at fired her for going to hospital on Sunday, her day off, to visit her father, but refused to fire a visa worker who continually turned up to work drunk, and was even banned by a client from its premises for this reason. The company brought in visa workers on a 1/3 of the wages of the US counterparts, got the US guys to train them, and then fired the US guys. They even brought in workers on just temporary visas where they weren't supposed to work. They even set the visa workers up in dodgy apartments they owned to claw back some of the wages they were paying the visa workers.
It's just a massive con.
One of the more useful applications of QR codes is the ability to store contact info. I've seen business cards (not updated mine yet) which have contact details and a QR code which you scan to then add those details to your phone, no fuss, easy peasy, hence the permission.
When Borders Australia went bust, they had a closing down sale. I went there with the wife with the hope of getting some cheap text books. Even with a 50% price cut, Amazon UK was still 10 or 20 quid cheaper, and at the time they were doing free shipping to Aus. With that kind of price difference, expect a few more retailers to go before prices get reasonable. These companies were loving it when they could outsource labour to cheaper markets, but when the consumer outsources their purchases, they don't like it so much...
I saw a programme on the BBC about 10 years ago all about the Russian use of Phages on bacteria. They would find a new bacteria in a hospital, go to the sewage effluent of the hospital and find a corresponding phage which eats it. The only reason it was a Russian secret was all the research was published in Russian in Russian journals, which western scientists hadn't been reading. They've been using them since the 60s or 70s...
If you can cope with a Photoshop-like product without it actually being Photoshop, I can heartily recommend Photoplus from www. serif.com. It is by far the closest I have come across to a clone, and is only 70 quid. They even have a cut down version free on their website. I tried GIMP and it is just so behind on features and development is so slow I just gave up on it in the end. PSPlus is so much faster than PS for batch editing pics too. Inkscape is very nice for an AI replacement. It's lacking in some features, but better in other areas, so it's swings and roundabouts. Make the break for it while you can!
So so much fun.... Then I got addicted and they all started playing other stuff so I went online to feed my hunger, and got my head kicked in so much. Still I persevered, and got better and better till I could hold my own. When the teamsters took it up again, I massacred so many players with diving round the corner headshots and pin point accuracy it really shows you how much harder it is when you go international after playing a local team!
The trick here is getting the teachers. Like many have said, all the teachers I knew knew faff all about actually programming. I taught myself how to program both sets of the school's computers, without any help from the nominal teacher who just supervised the kids who could barely type. Anyone capable of programming is probably going to be lured away from school by industry/university wages. Maybe that's changing with all the outsourcing to India/China though.
I'm no way against the idea, but there are some big hurdles to overcome.
He moved to NY from London when she (a native of the US, but indian ethnicity) moved back there after a couple of years in the UK. They quickly found that their company was hiring indian programmers for 1/3 of the americans, bringing them in under very dodgy visas, setting them up in apartments the company owned (and charged them rent for) and getting the americans to train them up before firing the yanks. They have been tied up in a class action for 10 years trying to get the company to admit to it (he on the immigrant's unfair pay side, her on the american unfair dismissal side!). They even interviewed an indian, who admitted he was only taking the 1/3 of the wage so he could get into america. Who could blame him? The company's representatives almost had heart attacks at the deposition. They kept one indian on even though he regularly turned up for work drunk, while she got fired for visiting her father in hospital on a Sunday. She's even given evidence before the senate about the abuse of the visa system. They tried to give up the case due to ill health, but the company is refusing to let it go now, it's become a vendetta on their side. They have managed to get some 'revenge' though, they told the top one hundred company investors of the company's wasting money on this vendetta and so many companies have pulled out it caused the shares to lose 500 million. They're still fighting the case even though they've lost so much money and through the ill health. So I would be very suspicious of these companies who want the visas expanded.
Really, I thought we had it bad in the UK, but adverts can easily double the length of a movie over here. I wouldn't mind if it was limited to 4 breaks per hour, but it can be literally 2 minutes and then the ads come on again. It's okay though, there's very little worth watching on Oz TV that we don't already watch via the interwebs and then DVDs (absolving our guilt!) They've got digital freeview here now, but have yet to go through the sort out we went through in the UK, with the Beeb taking it over and making it half decent. 2/3rds of the channels are just clones of the remaining 3rd, not even usefully time shifted like the +1s in the UK.
I got this phone pay as you go in Oz and while it's not the fastest chip on the market, it handles flash pretty well on it's 480x800 screen, has a 5MP camera with HD video recording and a micro SD slot so you can stick as much memory as you like in it. I was seriously suprised by the price for those specs.
Which is why all the book shops are going out of business, and even when Borders had its closing down sale with 50% off all books, you could STILL get them on Amazon for half those proces. The price cartels are basically killing the Australian retail industry, and their own ridiculous margins.
The problem is government is supposed to save during rich times (when money is freely circulating on its own) and spend in depression (to get money circulating) and neither chancellors seem to understand that. 'Frugle' Brown overspent when there was lots of money in the coffers, and sold the gold at the worst moment. Now Osborne is going too far the other way.
My mother in law got called the other day by a guy claiming to be from Microsoft and saying there was something wrong with her pc. Fortunately she'd been told about it by a friend, and she immediately said 'No you're not! Aren't you ashamed of yourself?' and proceeded to tell him off till he hung up!
Both Apple and Google seem to be in the business of harvesting user's information as a matter of course, they really don't seem keen on keeping their user's data private from anyone else either, and this has put me off getting a so-called smart phone till they've had a little time to work at least the most obvious of their quirks out.
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