* Posts by Iain

41 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Feb 2007

Ghosts in the machine learning pipeline will be impossible to exorcise


Charlie Brooker was 8 years ahead...


Laptop option on the way for ortholinear keyboard hipsters in form of MNT Reform add-on

Thumb Up

Ahh, just looked at the images, and the original Commodore PET was ortholinear, but at school we had the later ones with the more normal looking black keyboard

Indeed, I'm typing using the Dvorak layout on a Qwerty keyboard.

Makes it interesting in technical tests when I go all hunt & peck if I have to use Qwerty...


Wow! They've re-invented the Sharp MZ80-K (and others)

Never knew I was nearly 40 years ahead of the game, shouldn't have sold it years ago!

Although I don't recall it being particularly ergonomic...?

Mensa data spillage was due to 'unauthorised internal download'


Nominative determinism?

"Keeping its members up-to-date about events, Chris Leek, Chairman of British Mensa, said in an email posted last Friday and seen by us:"

Hate e-scooters? Join the club of the pals of 190 riders in Austin TX who ended up in hospital


"E-scooters" haven't found a foothold in Blighty yet

Have you been to Shoreditch recently?

They're everywhere, although with the aforementioned wheel size/pothole problem, anyone riding one down Worship St must be brave or foolhardy, the potholes there are bad enough on a bike or car!

UK is 'not a surveillance state' insists minister defending police face recog tech

Big Brother

Image quality is inversely proportional to the seriousness being CCTV'd

A serious crime on Crimewatch will have been perpetrated by a fuzzy blob

Before they stopped the scam of enforcing minor motoring offences by CCTV, we were furnished with crystal clear, high quality footage of our serious infractions of stopping on a single yellow for five minutes (inconviencing no-one), along with the demand for a fine

Small Brit firms beg for 'light touch' as only half are ready for digital tax reforms due next month


I found a freebie!

https://www.quickfile.co.uk/ free for small accounts (this is just one of the first ones I found looking for 'free MTD software', it was good, so I didn't look further!)

Works well for me as a contractor on Flat Rate VAT, took about an hour to sign up, import the data from my spreadsheet, hook up to MTD, and submit my first return, which all went smoothly

I did look at the developer docs/api, but quickly realised it was non-trivial

As mentioned above, I've got no idea what the HMRC are trying to achieve by replacing a simple form with all this faffing about!

Erm... what did you say again, dear reader?


Young 'un taking a nap?

Erm.... what's a 'whippernapper'?

Erms and Ums can be useful to insert comprehension pauses for those of that speak too fast for others. to understand...

'Fibre broadband' should mean glass wires poking into your router, reckons Brit survey


Any connection with some fibre would be nice!

I really could care less!

I can't even get FTTC, and I'm in WC2

BTs cabinet for the next street, which runs up to the building next door does, but not our cabinet

Virgin Media were utterly useless, taking forever to decide that it would cost too much to connect me, even though they've been mail-shotting me saying we're connected for ages, and their checker offers a Quick Connection pack for the building next door again, indicating that it too is connected to VM

If anyone has any ideas of how to get a connection, I'm all ears!

Japanese fashion puts the oo-er into trousers


'"Hampton" – from British rhyming slang Hampton Wick'

I always thought it was from a Royal Palace, as in "Don't get your Hampton caught"

China claims to have turbine-powered drone carrying 200kg payload

Black Helicopters


A gas turbine powered drone?

First thought: It's going to be loud!

Second thought: isn't that just another way of describing a remote control or autonomous helicopter?

Pornography, violence and JG Ballard: High Rise, the 1970s' internet


I'll have to get the book

I hadn't realised this existed, even though I've read some other JG Ballard, and one of my favourite Hawkwind songs is based on the book

High Rise

Planet-bonking rock hunt armed with humanity's cruellest weapon: bureaucracy


How do we know?

When we've found 90% of them?

Yahoo! parties! like! it's! 1999! with! retro! billboard! revival!


Re: "feel free to let us know if you require or appreciate such illumination"

Here's a retro version from 2009, featuring the launch of Fantasy Football, soon to meet its demise.

Let me PLUG that up there, love. It’s perfectly standaAAARGH!


Use all four switches...

Wire two in series for one light, two in parallel for the other

Bonus points for using nonadjacent pairs

Zionists stole my SHOE, claims Muslim campaigner

Black Helicopters

Breaking News!!

It's been found!


Ex-cop: Holborn fireball comms outage cover for £200m bling heist gang


Any grid engineers?

Right, so the fire was by the CAA, about 1/3 the way up Kingsway north of the Aldwych.

So, obviously the cables in the immediate area were damaged, but there's a lot more work that that area going on...?

Can anyone explain why they seem to have been digging up the roads and replacing cable, all the way from Fleet St round the Aldwych including Drury Lane & Catherine St, all the way up Kingsway, and back east along Holborn by the station too?

Doomsday Clock says 3 minutes to midnight. Again


Re: Ahh the obligatory

As soon as I see a story about the Doomsday Clock, the jukebox in my head involuntarily cues up '2 Minutes to Midnight'

Then I checked to see when it came out, over 30 years ago in August '84. Feeling old now.

In the style of XKCD:

By this September, the song will be closer in time to what it's about (when the Doomsday Clock was at 2 Minutes to Midnight in September 1953) than it is to the present day. Eeep.

BT Tower to be replaced by 3D printed BT Tower



"In the event of a terrorist bomb attack, the lightweight 3D printed BT Tower will fall harmlessly onto the 3D printed version of Euston Station below."

It'll be rivalling teh Burj Kalifa, as it'll be at least 750m high then...

Chubby-chasing sex trolls ran me offline, says fashion blogger


In my imagination

Bronny looks liiiiiiike

Millie Tant from Viz

I should be so lucky

lucky lucky lucky

MPs demand UK rates revamp after Google's 'extraordinary tax mismatch'


"We do not promote artificial tax structures"


Aren't all tax structures artificial by definition?

Or is there an all natural, organic, free-range tax I haven't heard about?

How one bad algorithm cost traders $440m


Re: Our robot servants are getting more subtle

There is an xkcd forum, it used to be linked off the main page.

Join in the fun here: http://forums.xkcd.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=88073

Rifle-waving Yank's premature detonation ruins city's big bang


Y'all should try clicking through to the linked article

Where it says

"He readily admits it. He knew the container was there, he knew the container contained fireworks, he accepts responsibility"

That says it all really...

Call of Duty hacker behind bars after college burglary


Re: Did he get caught during TWO separate burglaries?

Yes! The linked article is much clearer - there were the two burglaries implied, plus at least another three, so it seems more like an idiot thief who branched out into computer crime.

He's forgetting the golden rule, do one thing well, see also drug couriers who get busted when they get stopped for a duff light or speeding or no insurance...

Councils spunk £515m in 4 years on CCTV

Black Helicopters

Re: I see you in hi-def and crystal clear

Try stopping on a bus stop for five minutes in Camden at 11pm, causing no obstruction. They helpfully give you a link to the crystal clear video that clearly shows the car, and both of us, me driving, my gf popping out to a cash point and back...

Try accidentally making an illegal right turn in Lambeth (although it was safe, it was just there to block a short-cut), and you get a link to a set of nice clear stills from the CCTV.

Spotify v. Pure Music



The whole M-16 album by Sodom which features an excellent cover of Surfin' Bird, plus a few of their other albums, they used to have nearly all of them, now only about half.

BOFH: The Cloud Committee Calamity


Hungerford bridge?

Surprising they weren't electrocuted or run over by a train!

LOHAN: Reader vacuum pump plans really suck


I'll second that!

Don't have your battery sitting on a nice warm bench (I guess it'll be away from the action), wrap in some more dry ice for double the time the balloon takes to reach 80,000 feet or whatever height it's firing at... then you'll have a test closer to the real thing.

Beer, as you can chill it with the spare dry ice....

Open 'Facebook killer' survives on cash donations


*Looks up diaspora*

I consider myself to have a good vocabulary, but I wasn't really sure on the meaning.

Indeed it is a bit rubbish as their name, as although it mainly involves a migration of a population from one place to another, it falls down a bit when you get to:

* A lot of these migrations are forced

*And it generally involves a yearning to return, unless the migration has become permanent

Maybe the down voters should've looked it up first :)

Insulin pump hack delivers fatal dosage over the air




A plug-in infrared led/photodector pair.

(Well two pairs, if you want to communicate both ways)

Winning new UK pylon design may never be used


... to the steel-cored aluminium cable!

Yes I watched the re-run of the BBC series about the national grid

End of UK local dialling in sight as numbers run out


London pedant

London's STD is now 020, the 8 digit phone numbers start with 7, 8 and since June 2005 3


ARM daddy simulates human brain with million-chip super


Will it run 17 times slower?

Anyone get the reference to a mind bending SF book?

Dell's faulty PC legal woes worsen (again)


Not just GXs

We've got Optiplex 745s and when running Tomcat via Eclipse, the network connection drops randomly, at least twice a day. And they're the mini ones, so we can't put a decent card in either.

Firefox 4 debuts: The last kitchen sink release



Found the requirements page:


So you should be ok wth OS X 10.5?

But I'm stuffed with my ancient G4 and OS X 10.4

NZ woman pays motorised tribute to A RYAN 1


Of course there isn't

No male motorist in history has ever needed assistance

Raytheon unveils Linux 'Insider Threat' rooter-out routers

Black Helicopters

Does it

Detect someone taking a screenshot with a mobile phone camera?

TV crime show host 'ordered ratings-boosting hits'


Crossing the line

between reporting and creating reality TV, Alistair Stewart did it here already!

EC to amend VAT Directive


Simple solution

Scrap VAT and collect the equivalent on income tax... much fairer.

Remove a stupid double tax, after all the money I'm spending is what's left over after I've paid tax already

Superfluid leak downs LHC for months



So... can we expect another, squeaky verse for the LHC rap?

Police track 100mph urban joyrider


Simple Really

1. Find a house with a similar bike.

2. Make your video, starting and finishing at the above house.

3. Post on YouTube.

4. Profit!