* Posts by Chris

54 publicly visible posts • joined 13 Sep 2007


The good book: How to bet better online


Good stuff

Good explanation. In fact many odds comparision websites list the betting percentage (ie the amount you need to stake to win 100%) for any event.

For the gold cup for example (a very liquid and well covered race) the percentage odds


are: Best price percentage: 100.1%, bookies only: 102.2% - which is unbelievably tight.

If you combine this with cashback from signing up for bookies, you can make arbitrage profits.

KDE hopes to fill boots with 4.2 release



Reg hacks are such tardtards.

Aussie convicted over Simpsons sex pics



The Simpsons are all at least 20 years old, and the characters are played by people over 40. Where's the child porn bit?

If I draw a stick figure, If I THINK it is a child - is that child porn?

Snipers - Cowardly assassins, or surgical soldiers?

Black Helicopters

SMART bullets

Haven't DARPA been trying this for a while?


That's from 11 years ago - and targeted at aerial combat. Did anything ever come of it? It seems that if they struggled with Big 'ol shells, smaller ones will be even tougher...

BNP leaked list claims first victims

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Let us pray for all the white people

There was a vicar on there too I saw.

Asus to phase out sub-10in Eee PCs, says CEO

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And the Commentard of the week goes to...

Webster Phreaky!

Quality FoTW material, marred only by a lack of spelling mistakes.

BT claims UK broadband boost breakthrough


re: Silly Question

Not quite - it would have no effect if you are plugged into the Test socket on the master socket (see here: http://www.zensupport.co.uk/knowledgebase/article.aspx?id=10828 ), but if you are just plugged into the master socket then the bell wire can still have an effect - it acts a bit like an antenna to pick up electrical noise.


Bear squeeze blues: How to destroy a bank


Aktualee Pimp boy...

Googling supply and demand might be more productive for you.

Market makers may try to move prices against you if you are trying to sell stock. That's true if you hold the stock and are trying to sell or whether you have borrowed it and are trying to sell.

So what's your point? These are just issues of trade execution - that's why people pay code monkeys to come up with algorithmic trading methods. You can even buy solutions more or less of the shelf now.

The disclosure you are looking for (as I mentioned above) is a combination of the %MCOL and the utilisation (how much of the available to borrow stock is actually borrowed). This is easily available information. It would be a very naive (and short lived) trader who took a large short position in a stock with a high %MCOL and a high utilisation. The mechanism of that trader's execution would be a short (or bear) squeeze.

Stick to recruitment - how's that going for you?


"Massively aided confidence"

you say massively aided confidence, I say created a short term false market.

Oh yes. The FTSE closed at 4,880.00 before the ban. Today it closed at 4835.74, and 5 banks went titsup today. (Fortis, Glitnir, B&B, Wachovia, Fortis). All this with no short selling!

+1 to Evil's comment about Bear squeezes - That would mean the price of the share was going up, not down. But let's not let reality get in the way of a crap story.

Chris/Darth Sidious.


FTSE close

Oops, make that 4818.77.


Ill Informed nonsense

I can't be bothered to correct some of the many glaring errors in this article, but I'll have a go at the main Express reading premise.

Shorting had nothing to do with the demise of HBOS. The laughable secret "Control Index" is usually refererred to as "short interest" or "% Market Cap on Loan", and information on it is widely available.

Here for instance: http://tinyurl.com/hbosshort

As you can see from that chart, HBOS had a short interest of less than 3% when it was forced into Lloyds's embrace - a negligible amount. Normal investors - pension funds, insurance companies, fund managers and even retail investors were selling. Of course the FSA had this data on their desks - but the politcal pressure from the tabloids and Gordon Brown was too much, so they spinelessly banned short selling.

Today, even with short selling banned, Bradford and Bingley have gone under proving what a nonsense this ban is.

Stick to headhunting.

Royal Society: Schools should show creationism 'respect'

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Doesn't go far enough

We should also be teaching the 5 elements in physics, the 4 humors in medicine and that the sun orbits the earth.

London stock market floored by computer glitch


Bloody LSE...

Still down...


Bet against the bubble - how to head off a subprime crisis


Derivatives market

There already is a property derivatives market - however it is thinly traded because although there are plenty of willing sellers - Property companies/banks/insurance companies looking to hedge their exposure/people willing to speculate on house price falls - there aren't really any buyers.

If you want to be long oil, you have to buy derivatives - most people don't have a large oil storage facility to store the physical stuff in - but in the property market this isn't true. Speculators are willing and able to buy the physical asset and rent it out, and the costs of doing so are lower than the derivatives market; the barriers to entry (minimum contract size) are much lower (it's about £5m in the PD market). So there isn't (and is unlikely to be) a large body of buyers. That means the PD market is likely destined to stay small.

Vodafone says termination rate clampdown would hit the poor


"ripping people off"

Vodafone have a return on assets of 5.7%. All that infrastructure has to be paid for. Previously, they used the old cheap calls'n'texts plus expensive overseas calls and data.

Now they can't play that game any more, they have to increase the cost of other things to make up that return on the assets. It's just the basic reality of a market economy.


Re: Paying for voicemail

Well, if you want the *service* of voicemail, you can pay for it. If you don't want that service, then disable it. You still have a choice.

I'm sick of mobitards (I like that one) who use the "free" voicemail, thus ensuring that if I dial them and they don't answer, I will be charged. So it isn't free, it's just paid for by the people who call you. They don't get a choice.



You can choose to accept the call or not, so you won't be charged unknowingly. Someone has to pay for the service, and currently there is cross subsidation from heavy users to low users.

You will still be able to choose a tariff with no incoming cost - you'll just have to pay for it through higher call charges/rental elsewhere.

Someone always has to pay, otherwise the service isn't provided in the first place.

Royal Navy plans world's first running-jump jet


'Scuse civvy ignorance

I realise they can't generate the power for a catapult to get them in the air, but why can't they use an arrestor wire system to get them back on deck? It doesn't require any power (quite the opposite surely).

Why can't they use these pointlessly expensive VTOL capabilities to get in the air then use arrestor wires to recover them? Are they that hard to fit to a carrier?

Am I hopelessly misunderstanding the issues here?

Asus said to be prepping Eee-free Atom mini laptop

Jobs Halo

How to destroy a first mover advantage

Asus really are stupid. They gain a massive advantage of being first to market with a decent Small Cheap Computer. They then start to think that it is the Eee brand that is doing all this rather than the price point + usablility, and proceed to plaster it over every stupid more and more expensive variant they come up with, diluting the value of it and even its raison d'etre - to be small and cheap. They cosy up to Microsoft to ensure that the XP variants are priced the same as Linux versions by artificially screwing with the specs, thus increasing the entry level price point.

Stupid Stupid Stupid.

I'm not a Mac fan (I own nothing Apple), but at least they know how to launch a product.

Research firm emails 20,000 addresses in the clear


As I replied to them at the time

F*****g idiots.

Official: Eee PC range to expand


I've just realised

The idiots think it the eee pc brand that is selling these SCCs - not the fact that they (were) cheap. Why buy a small, cheap computer if it isn't cheap?

UK boffins roll out video periodic table



I particularly enjoyed the bloke fondling the 8 inch cylinder of caesium, although Braniac did a better job of exploding things.

BT opens wallet to send fibre to the home


Monopoly money

Telecoms are a natural monopoly, like gas, electricity and water. The investment required is so huge that it makes sense only to do it once - you don't need 2 different power lines coming into your house, 2 different sewerage systems etc.

Therefore these things have to be regulated to stop them abusing their monopoly positions to charge high prices for substandard service. (In theory - in practice all government regulators are hugely inefficient and end up going native).

The model that has been struck upon for regulation of most of these industries is to split the retail end of the business off from the ownership of the infrastructure, then to lightly regulate the retail end (competition should do that for you) and heavily regulate the infrastructure, monopoly business. This is done (in a simpified way) by having a fixed return on investment allowable (say 15%).

However, this means we end up with creative responses such as this - play up the size of the investment to ensure you have a larger cost base on which you can charge your monopoly rent, then cut the size of the investment later to what is actually needed.

This is just the first salvo in a long negotiation between OFCOM and BT regarding what regulated cost base it is allowed. We should probably be examining how much it has cost other countries before judging anything that is said here with a forked tongue...

Groundbreaking two-in-one tubular console controller uncovered


For girls and w***ers

to practice with by the looks of that photo...

Blears pitches prize draws and online polls at young votes


Absolute Power

Wasn't this an episode of Absolute Power? They sold the idea of spending £100 on an ID card by making it into a lottery.

Gimmicky idiots.

Moody's to fix sub-prime computer error



It was a bug - they didn't annualise monthly volatility, thowing their assumptions off by a factor of sqrt(12).

The scandal was that once they spotted the error, they then changed the ratings process so that it got rated AAA anyway. They actually discarded a proposed change because "it didn't help the rating".

And yes, the head of structured finance got fired, not (just) some idiot coder.

Asus to revamp Eee PC 901 with bigger keyboard?


Good idea!

Maybe next they could add a 14.1" screen, a 250GB hard drive and a Core2Duo processor!

They could charge £350 for it and call it a laptop!

DVLA, Tiscali, Barclays rake in phoneline cash


How much OFCOM understand the market.

Problem: Companies have an incentive to keep people on hold whilst charging them money for the privilege of being on hold. They use 0870 numbers for this purpose to get round the onerous premium rate rules that involve actually answering calls.

OFCOM solution: Stick your finger up your bum for 2 years, then abolish 0870 numbers.

Company solution: Use 0871 numbers for exactly the same purpose.

Result: No change. Idiots.

Why didn't they just make it that if there is a revenue share, you have to abide by premium rate rules and you can't keep people on hold? Job sorted - you either get rubbish service but don't pay for the call, or you get someone to actually answer the call, for which you pay.

But OFCOM will probably just abolish 0871 numbers, and make them use 0872 ones instead... Numpties.

AMD now has 'more than allegations' against Intel


Prepared by Roly Birkin, QC

... Of course he was very, very drunk.

Were the snatched Brit sailors in 'disputed waters'?

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Come on guys, appoint a proper defence correspondent, rather than propaganda, misinformation spouting numpties *cough* *coughlin* *cough*.

Cracking article.

Boffins develop '500TB iPod' storage tech


What's the point?

500TB iPod? Record @ 320kb/s, and that gives you 425 years of music. I suppose if you start early and listen to it at 5x speed, then perhaps the iPod might be a good use.

Unless of course we are recording uncompressed HiDef pr0n @ 1.485Gb/s. Then we could store 32 days of hot sweaty action. That sounds better.

Mine's the one with google calculator sticking out...

O2 PR calls Reg readers 'techie nerds'


Before we get too indignant

We actually are all techy nerds.

Asus avoids Atom to get next Eee PC out early?

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So long as it can handle civ4, play my music, not require a huge carry case and cost <£400, then you have a sale!

Need something to drown out the sound of mobiles on a 24 hour australian flight...

Cassini survives 'in your face' Enceladus flypast


Windows for Spacecraft

"During the flyby, the instrument was switching between two versions of software programs. The new version was designed to increase the ability to count particle hits by several hundred hits per second."

You can imagine the scene... The operator prepares the new program, ever so carefully... waiting for the right moment, the countdown clock reaches zero... just as the operator hits enter, a prompt appears, grabbing the focus:

"Updating you computer is almost complete. You must reboot your computer for the updates to take effect.

Do you want to reboot now?"

Mine's the one covered in space dust...

Yahoo! leaves! London!



Typical socialist claptrap. Corporate taxes are far too high here.

Take away the tax raised from globalised companies like BP, Vodafone, Shell, GlaxoSmithKline, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland et alia ad nauseam and especially from the rich people who work for them and live in the UK, and who will pay for all the socialist sacred cows like the NHS and the welfare state?

Notice the improvement in the Irish economy, and INCREASED tax take since they slashed corporation tax.

WaSP gives browsers 'fail' grade


Other browsers...

9.26 manages 46/100

9.50 beta (build 9815) manages 65/100

Court lifts lid on Saudi terror threat claim


common dress code

"the beard'n'sandal crowd are receiving an extremely sympathetic hearing from high court beaks"

The Arabs or the CAATs/vegans?

BT gets EU backing to raise (and cut) wholesale broadband prices

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it works both ways

It also means in the more competitive areas, BT can CUT prices to compete better with sky/tiscali et alia.

Ofcom on the whole forced BT to keep its prices artificially high in order to stimulate competition. With deregulation, that should lead to lower prices in densely populated areas. Where there is no competition (in rural exchanges), then there will still be regulation, so BT can't exploit its monopoly position.

Seems sensible enough.

Enraged vegan spitroasts Reg hack

Dead Vulture

Why not?

"Important notice: No animals were harmed during the writing of this article."


Oz drafts 'batter an orphaned roo' guidelines


Blame Disney, kids telly

for all this anthropomorphic nonsense about animal cruelty. Bambi/Dumbo/Skippy etc could NOT REALLY TALK.

1) There are too many Kangaroos. This damages the habitat for other animals.

2) Therefore they need to be culled. Rifle/shotgun only really viable method, also least cruel.

3) A joey without a mother will not survive, it will starve to death, which is cruel.

4) Therefore it needs to be culled - quickest/least cruel method would be gun or skilfully delivered crack to the head.

Humans are top predator, you can't just turn that off and not interact with the environment.

US switches off the incandescent lightbulb

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Dimmer and dimmer (switch)

That's the end of moody lighting then...

And down lights.

Disability law can protect alcoholic workers

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@system - Bipolar != mild depression

I said depression is not a disease, not that all mental illness is bunkum - Bipolar disorder is not a depression - that's why they don't call them manic depressives anymore.

It's pretty hard to fake Bipolar effectively, and I'm not sure that not sleeping for days on end, delusions and all the other symptoms you'd have to fake are worth £100 a week - neither are suicide attempts really worth it.

However, depression has to go in the pot with ADHD and suchlike as give-it-a-name-so-we-can-pretend-we-understand-it-and-prescribe-drugs rubbish.

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neither is depression

It's just a name - there's no way a doctor can differentiate between someone faking depression (I'm a bit low at the moment, can't get out of bed, can't go to work, lacking self-esteem, give me incapacity benefit) and someone who is a bit low and therefore "depressed".

Giving something a name doesn't make it a disease.

Shooting report reveals glaring failures in Met's operation



"If they thought he might have a bomb, why was he allowed twice to get on a bus and then on the tube?"

"If they thought he didn't have a bomb, why did they shoot him?"

Unpalatable answer: because they wanted revenge for the recent attack and murdered someone they genuinely thought had tried to bomb London. As did many people (consider sun headline: 1 down... But they got the wrong bloke...

Sadly, this was either manslaughter (if they thought he had a bomb), or murder (if they didn't).

"Sir" Ian Blair has blocked investigations, misled the public after the shooting and seems intent on trying to gather more power with less responsibility (extended detention etc). He also seems to have bulletproof Labour credentials making him unsackable. That he has not been resigned is a personal disgrace, and that he has not been fired is a national digrace.

Samsung samples SATA II 2.5in SSD



it has to be 30dB. 0dB is the threshold of hearing.

0.3dB is only 10 femtoJumboJets.

Confused BBC tech chief: Only 600 Linux users visit our website



How do they identify all the geeks who use RSS to read the bbc news pages? Firefox by default in ubuntu has a bbc news feed.

1and1's dedicated servers go titsup

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That's what I get for being a nice guy.

Nah. That's what you get for being pompous enough not to fix it in the first place.

Italian court rules against HP on pre-installed Windows


I want my money back!

The car I bought came preloaded with goodyear tyres!

I wanted to put yokohamas on!

I demand my rights!


Apple's Leopard rejects latest version of Java


@Peter, Not the error, dear boy

It's the fact they aren't fronting up to the snafu. It's not as if Java is some minor unused app and they forgot to compatability test it - as you could fairly argue with the "enhancement" BSOD story.

Schoolkid chipping trial 'a success'


Easy to fix

To avoid the problem of passing the item of clothing to a suitable geek, just make sure all the kids have to wear school mandated underpants.

Registration would then involve the children lining up and bending over in front of teacher with their trousers round their ankles, ready to be "probed".

Just like the old days.