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* Posts by John Brown (no body)

2597 posts • joined 21 May 2010

Transparency thrust sees Met police buying up to 30,000 bodycams

John Brown (no body)
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"I don't know of any police force that is not already trialling this in some form. This is the future."

What, so each Police force is independently paying, trailing and developing systems, methods and procedures? Isn't this the sort of thing ACPO should be doing? Likewise, ought their not be some legislation in place before every copper becomes a Google view drone?

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Default admin password, weak Wi-Fi, open USB ports ... no wonder these electronic voting boxes are now BANNED

John Brown (no body)
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"What's amazing is not that there are security holes. What is amazing is that it took this long to catch."

Even more amazing to me is that we don't see as many stories about fraudulent voting/counting as we do about faulty/poor/crappy voting machine. When did we last see a story on El Reg reporting on hackers breaking into a voting machine or system and changing the outcome? That sounds like just the sort of challenge your average script kiddie would do "for the lulz".

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Scouts' downed Compass database won't be back 'til autumn

John Brown (no body)
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Yes, I'm sure Vulture South feel the same way ;-)

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Scientists tail whales, hails their tales of record 14,000-mile migration

John Brown (no body)
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Joke

Re: Western Grays were pretty much wiped out.

"what should a whale do/prove in order to qualify as a "western pacific Gray".

Produce at least three different forms of ID including at least one utility bill with it's name and address on it and photo ID. Alternatively, it can sign in via Facebook.

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Ukraine conflict spilling over into cyber-crime, warns former spy boss

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Is this really wise?

You mean like arming the contas? Or the mujahideen? Or Iraq? Or...Or...Or...

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DRONE ALONE: US Navy secretary gives up on manned fighters

John Brown (no body)
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Re: All will be well then...

"In fact, lets automate the carriers too"

Oh, noooo, that's just one step too far for the sailors. The pilots aren't really sailors so getting rid of them is ok, but actual ships and proper sailors? That's just not cricket old boy.

On a slightly more serious note, I'd have thought drone ships would be easier to operate than drone aircraft and wonder why they don't even seem to be investigation that possibility let alone starting production.

The air force seem to be quite, if not very interested in pilot-less aircraft. The army are looking seriously at robots for logistics and exo-suits. The navy only seem to be interested in bigger ships and bigger guns

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What's Meg Whitman fussing over: The fate of HP ... or the font on a DISRUPTIVE new logo?

John Brown (no body)
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Re: An Empty Box Cost Millions I bet

HP have a track record for empty boxes. The Reg did an article some years ago about large empty boxes arriving at customer sites just to deliver a small manual. Unfortunately my search-fu has failed but IIRC HP were the winners.

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John Brown (no body)
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Joke

Re: thanks for that link

"However could they not have provided a nice template for the Bingo card? seems like a lot of work to play"

If you can't knock up a template in less than 30 seconds in a spreadsheet with cell borders or a table in a word processor than I'm afraid we'll have to ask for your El Reg membership to be rescinded.

Or you could write a perl script to create a LaTeX document and export it as a .ps file to a printer and we might let you stay.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: I'd have called it teal, monitor must be flaky.

Yup. Anytime the "symbolism" needs to be explained then you know it's either failed or was invented afterwards because they needed sound bites for the PR announcements.

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NASA probe sent to faraway planet finds DWARF world instead: Pics

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Lets see....

"I'm kinda curious to see if there is a single space suit down there with one hand raised to the sun....."

Which one is that from? My memory is telling me Kim Stanley Robinsons Icehenge, but not with any significant level of confidence.

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John Brown (no body)
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Headmaster

Re: Clyde Tombaugh

"they will outlive the Earth"

On the other hand, "live" might be a bit of a strong description for an ounce of ashes.

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Sticks and stones may break my DRONES – but I'm worth $10bn, laughs China's 'copter giant

John Brown (no body)
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It seems odd...

...that a Chinese company is looking for venture from Silicon Valley when the Chinese seem to be in the position of having so much money they don't really know what to do with it all.

They must be after more than just capital.

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EU says dominant Google ILLEGALLY FIDDLES search results

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Dog food eating

Ok, so I search on

Naval architecture in the Industrial Age

8th link on Google after wikipedia pages and .edu pages.

Are you making the point that Google is great because it found the "correct" result on the first page or are you complaining that the "correct" link wasn't at the top of the page or are you concerned that Google should place sites higher which use the exact phrase before others which just contain most or all of the words listed in the search term?

FWIW,searching on "Naval architecture in the Industrial Age" placed your link second, the first link used the exact phrase as the article title.

As far as I can see, in this instance Google is working as expected and as advertised.

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What would have stopped TV5Monde hack? Yup, MOAR LAWS

John Brown (no body)
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Re: European democracy is an oxymoron

"Lest you think people might vote for heads of state, I'd just like to point out that only 33,973 people voted for Cameron in 2010. Just sayin'."

Except that many UK voters don't seem to understand what or who they are voting for these days. The insidious implications of much political electioneering is geared towards making the voting population think they are voting in a US Presidential style election instead of for their local MP.

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Scummy transients FOUND ON MARS by NASA rover

John Brown (no body)
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Alien

"and people realised that life here began in a reducing or at least neutral environment."

Yep, Earth was teeming with life until some weird mutant started farting highly toxic and corrosive O2 and caused a massive extinction event.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: Mars9?

The Long Mars?

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Verizon to world: STOP opening dodgy phishing emails, FOOLS

John Brown (no body)
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Re: No defense against willful ignorance.

"The last thing we need is something popping up and spooking the users when they get an email from it-announce@[nameofbusiness].uk with a reply to of it-support@[nameofbusiness].uk"

Up-voted for that. There are plenty of reasons why a From: and Reply-to: might be different, just as there are reasons why a phone CLI might not be the number of the phone making the call. That the process can be used by black-hats is a sad side effect which can be difficult to mitigate, especially for front-line users who may be dealing with emails from all over the world on a daily basis. Education is the best solution but some people (many people, if the stats in the article are even close to accurate) have to be persuaded that they need educating.

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John Brown (no body)
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Thumb Up

Yes thanks, I'd also like to know if that's a consistent typo, a local accent thing causing a mis-spelling or is it really a process which scraps your RAM or a usage of "scrapper" I've just not hard of before today.

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Help! We need to pick a platform for our desert adventure

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Story of my life ...

"before the decision makers have reached the 19th hole"

Or worse, after they've spent waaaay more time at the 19th hole than the other 18 all put together.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: Keep it simple

"Why use an Intel NUC?"

I wondered that too. Apart from your helpful suggestions, another option is one of the HP microservers which are designed for 24/7 operation and cost the same or less than a NUC.

EDIT: @JonP; Ah, I'd not noticed the Intel sponsorship either. That rules out an AMD powered HP box then.

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Fancy a wristjob from Tim Cook? TOUGH, you CAN'T HAVE ONE

John Brown (no body)
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That's such a shame, so even if I wanted a wrist-borne micro-phablet I'd have to wait for months before I can knock one off? Damn!

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HOT HOVERSHIP-ON-HOVERSHIP ACTION: SpaceX ready for barge boing

John Brown (no body)
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"0910 UK time."

Correction: 2110 UK time, 16:10 US ET

Updated countdown here.

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John Brown (no body)
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0910 UK time. I suspect a lot of people here will not be doing much work other than getting a coffee at work in the morning :-)

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John Brown (no body)
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Paris Hilton

Re: SpaceX is seriously cool

"Someone needs to commercialise velcro socks, footboards and headboards first"

I can think of a few positions that ought to work ok in micro-gravity without Velcro or straps. The "tree" position for starters. And you don't need to be so fit if you don't have to hold the weight of your partner. Maybe you need to experiment more often if you can't come up with creative solutions without artificial aids. Maybe you can get a research grant?

Paris...because...wel it's bloody obvious, innit.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: SpaceX is seriously cool

"I also look forward to seeing them get a manned capsule working."

Isn't it already effectively man-ready but it's just that it has to be "proven" with multiple un-manned successful uses first? Then again, they've not tried landing one yet. Or have they? Wow! There's so much exciting stuff going on with space stuff these days I'm losing track of it all!

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National Grid's new designer pylon is 'too white and boring' – Pylon Appreciation Society

John Brown (no body)
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Re: "Flash Bristow"

...and I'd watch it!

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: I think we have to ask ourselves two questions

I think the answer is in your vote scores for that posts :-)

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John Brown (no body)
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Facepalm

Re: White pylon

"If any government even attempted to build a nuclear plant at a new site the rent a crowd would immediately descend and cause chaos"

It does make one wonder why they don't just build on MoD land. There's plenty of it around the country and already secure in many cases and with specific laws regarding access. Not just huge training areas but disused army and RAF bases.

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China weaponizes its Great Firewall into the GREAT FIRE CANNON, menaces entire globe

John Brown (no body)
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Re: 1941

"The US last declared war on Dec 8, 1941 against the Empire of Japan. Three days later Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy then declared war on the US."

That's close enough for government work :-)

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: So, what now?

"scripts which screw with you are placed on the same subdomain as scripts that make the site load anything at all"

Yes, like when back in the day, tucows.com decided direct all their download links via their ad-server. The easy solution was to just not use TuCows. Where are they now? Absorbed into cnet or something?

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John Brown (no body)
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"Next, a war requires a formal declaration"

Except when it's a "police action". Or someone "invited" you in to help. Or it's in support of a UN resolution. Or you just go and do it without a formal declaration of war anyway.

Has there actually been any "formal declaration of war" since 1939?

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Soil and sand harden as SPEEDING MISSILES and METEORS SLAM into GROUND – boffins

John Brown (no body)
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Joke

Well obviously...

...it's a DARPA project to develop a "mole" machine to attack the inhabitants of Pellucidar and steal the underground oil manufacturing machines.

What? You thought oil was a natural product?

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The Walton kids are ABSURDLY wealthy – and you're benefitting

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Laziness is their secret

"80% of what it serves falls strictly into the junk food category."

Although to be fair, that applies to pretty much any chain of supermarkets. Some will have a better selection of "raw" ingredients than others, but 80% or more is ready-prepared, ready-to-heat'n'eat food full of artificial colours and preservatives, not to mention sugars and, in the US at least, huge amounts of corn syrup.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: Problem?

"The problem lies when these billions of dollars are hoarded and kept in bank in the Caymans instead of the money being used"

Except that the money isn't just sitting in a vault doing nothing. The bank can only afford to pay interest on deposits if it first lends out that deposited money at even higher interest rates. Most money is just a number on a computer anyway and those numbers move around all over the place as investments. You want to hide your ill-gotten gains in a Caymen bank? Great! They'll invest it somewhere else.

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PHYSICS APPLECART UPSET as dark energy disappears, Universe slams on brakes

John Brown (no body)
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Coat

Catch 22?

So, let's see if I understand this correctly.

Scientists theorise from observation that the universe is expanding at a certain rate but can't identify enough matter/energy to account for it. So they postulate some unobserved dark matter/energy.

Now, they postulate that the amount of theorized and unobserved dark matter/energy must be less than they thought so the universe must be expanding more slowly than first theorised from observations.

Maybe there's some even darker matter/energy to account for the missing dark matter/energy?

My head hurts but I can't tell if it's exploding or imploding. Either way, it's dark in there so it doesn't really matter.

Coat, The one with the deep, dark pockets ------->

EDIT: My wife just said it's like a seeing a bus going down the motorway at 200MPH and the engine obviously can't make it go that fast so it must have another invisible engine helping out. But now we think the magic unseen, invisible engine is much smaller than we thought therefore the bus isn't actually going at 200mph after all. My had still hurts.

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Videogame publishers to fans: Oi, freetard! STOP RESURRECTING our dead titles online

John Brown (no body)
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Happy

Orphan works?

Surely the get out clause is to attempt to contact the publisher/creator by doing a cursory search online and when no usable results turn up, you can safely assume that it's an "orphan work" and be legally protected. Isn't that how it's supposed to happen?

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Silence is golden: Charlie Chaplin's The Tramp is 100 today

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Horse drawn cab driver

You need to look at it from the perspective of the audience of the day. Many had never even seen moving pictures, or at least had very little experience of cinema. It was all still new to them. They weren't jaded by years of exposure to 500 crap TV channels full of wannabee "stars" fresh from "Meeja Studies" courses.

I mean, the Apple ][, Speccy and IBM PC were pretty crap really, yes? How could anyone do anything useful with shitty old computers like that? They didn't even have YouTube kitty videos. They were rubbish compared to proper mainframes.</sarcasm>

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John Brown (no body)
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...and if Disney had owned the Chaplin back catalogue, it would probably all still be in copyright today.

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FAA approves Amazon US drone flight just months after firm gave up and went to Canada

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Where to launch a rocket in Canada?

Trees. You forgot to mention the trees. In the case of the SPB and their devices traditional liking for arboreal perches, Canada may not be the best place to launch from.

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ICANN urges US, Canada: Help us stop the 'predatory' monster we created ... dot-sucks!

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Still trying to work out

"no one in the US used .co.us"

From the point of view of smaller and/or more local business it sounds like a .state.us level might be a useful domain level. Or do they already exist?

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: Still trying to work out

"what was wrong with .com and .co.<country code>..."

Yeah, that bugged me a bit too, especially all those towns a cities spending wodges of cash on, for example .london. Depending on where in the world you live, .london could mean different things so .town is a prime example of a TLD that should have been created at the second level by the country TLD registry, eg .london.uk. I know there is .amsterdam.nl so did they spend money on .amsterdam or did they not see the point?

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Eyes on the prize: Ten 23-24-inch monitors for under £150

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Problems with Asus monitor

"I imagined that the monitor is a purely passive peripheral. Maybe the problem was with driver software, but this too is surprising, as I certainly didn't install any drivers"

Have you ever looked at the Xorg logs? They contain the make and model of your screen along with resolution, dpi, pixel ratio, refresh rates etc. Now I don't claim to know what's going on at the low level inside the drivers of Linux or any other OS but obviously there is a data exchange between the screen and GFX driver then some driver config magic to display your desktop at the ideal resolution. It may be that the logic in the screen was re-setting/crashing and sending incorrect or corrupt data back to the computer and the OS/driver was failing to cope with it.

I am, of course, assuming you meant that you were running Ubuntu in a GUI mode and not booting direct to console, which I'd imaging could never cause an OS crash no matter what the screen logic did.

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John Brown (no body)
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"With a matte screen"

Yeah, whatever happened to the computer use regulations which suggested non-glare screens or at least an anti-glare filter over the CRT screens? All this shiny glass is a bloody nightmare. But no one seems to know or care anymore, at least in many of the places I visit.

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John Brown (no body)
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FAIL

1990 called...

...and asked for their resolution back.

I mean, FFS, 1024 was pretty much standard screen height 25 YEARS ago even on a 15" CRT. 1080 is the best on offer for £150? Really?

These screens are little more than a small telly but without even a tuner!

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Apple swears that NO FANBOI will queue for its new gumble

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Maybe disingenuous

"There's still no killer app for the smart watch yet "

Two down votes and no examples of the killer app yet? That's a shame, because as a gadget geek I'd love to see a killer app that would make me want a smart watch.

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

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Insurance

"You have something valuable and you don't get it valued or insured, more fool you!"

Insurance comes in many forms. Hiding it in a honking great secure vault was probably seen as being reasonably risk free, possibly at a lower cost than paying cash to an insurance company who would then probably have a clause requiring you to pay someone to store it in a honking great secure vault.

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John Brown (no body)
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Re: Transatlantic twonk

"+1 for Transatlantic Twonk."

Ditto, especially for the shore-neutral equality of of the lexical construction meaning it can be used from either side.

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Do androids dream of herding electric sheep?

John Brown (no body)
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FAIL

No shit Sherlock!

"The reality is that a good sheepdog is a far better way to go about the job," said a spokesman.

Now compare with a drone operator/shepherd with the equivalent number of years training and practice at the job. Or give someone a dog and 30 minutes training and see how well they do at herding sheep.

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Screw YOU, Apple – Netflix teases world+dog with its own 'coming soon' SMARTWATCH

John Brown (no body)
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Re: The LG 20 is the best wearable smart phone

"a 3 inch display ...probably the best smart phone to wear on your wrist:"

I was just thinking something similar reading the article while looking over at my smallish Samsung S2 phone. A bit smaller, a decent comfortable strap attached to the forearm similar to the mp3 player straps joggers use and it'd probably work ok as reasonable place to keep a smart phone while on the move. Probably only practicable in warmer climates/environments since it might look (even more silly) strapped on over a long sleeved shirt or suit jacket.

We all laugh now, but what about in a year or two? It could be a godsend for the facebook generation :-)

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Marvell: We don't want to pay this $1.5bn patent bill because, cripes, it's way too much

John Brown (no body)
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Re: Patents: Sought by the Wright brothers while Europe built planes

"Europe has always led the way with crappy patent rules - they were the first to switch from first to invent to first to patent and persuaded the US to stupidly follow them."

Really? I'm rather surprised that so many disparate countries managed to harmonise their patent application rules and laws so long ago considering that the EU still are not able to fully harmonise the system.

For those not in "europe", the EU is not (yet!) a country. Most EU laws, rules etc are effectively guidance to the member states who then interpret that guidance and implement it within their own sovereign legal system. This sometimes leads to legal challenges at EU level where some countries have mis-interpreted the intentions of the guidance.

As an example, the UK often takes the EU guidance and interpret it strictly "by the book" and land us with often onerous legislation. The French are more likely to read it loosely, go "meh!" and implement something vaguely resembling the EU guidance.

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