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Comment: I can't ever work for IBM again .. (Score 1) 282

I took 'voluntary' separation from IBM, and part of the conditions for leaving with a lump sum was that I can never work for IBM either directly or via an agency or contract anywhere in the world ever again.

There's always a risk that IBM would take over all of the major employers and I would have been right royally fucked, but then what are the real chances of that ever happening?

Comment: Re:Relatively pointless (Score 3, Insightful) 195

by niks42 (#45499565) Attached to: Project Free TV, YIFY, PrimeWire Blocked In the UK
I think you overestimate the capabilities and patience of a large percentage of the population of the UK. I think these actions will shut down 80% of the movie sharing. It is a right royal pain in the bum, and personally I think the MPAA just don't understand that any action they take will have unintended consequences, but on the whole, it will have the effect they desire - most of the traffic will be gone.

They should just be careful what they wish for.

Comment: On my bench .. (Score 1) 215

by niks42 (#45479317) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What's On Your Hardware Lab Bench?
Scope is a must. Imagine a surgeon operating on anyone these days without Diagnostic Imaging.
HP 3312A Sig Gen (bought broken off *bay, fixed it)
HP 5385A Frequency Meter (bought broken off *bay, fixed it)
HP 54502A 400Mhz dual trace digital scope (bought broken off *bay, fixed it)
Homebrew GPIB adapter!
dual PSU (bought broken off *bay, fixed it)
DVM (bought broken off *bay, fixed it)
Open Logic Sniffer for a logic analyser
Multiple small USB-based toys
multiple small multimeters, going from tiny hand-held Chinese 4.5 digit autoranging one to an Avo 8 and an Avo Multiminor
SMT rework station
Weller soldering iron
Good old fashioned EPROM/EEPROM/GAL/PAL programmer

Comment: Re:It gets worse (Score 2) 234

by niks42 (#45416281) Attached to: Britain's Conservatives Scrub Speeches from the Internet
http://www.theyworkforyou.com/ will find you a page where you can mail your MP and they will answer. I complained to my MP about the police use of Terror laws to detain David Miranda, and I know it got to him as he replied. He did reply saying it was a police matter and nothing to do with Parliament, but hell, it struck home! Power to the People ..

Comment: SysReq key (Score 1) 665

by niks42 (#44960399) Attached to: Bill Gates Acknowledges Ctrl+Alt+Del Was a Mistake
I recall when IBM introduced the IBM AT Keyboard (84-key keyboard, with function keys down the left hand side where &deity. intended) they also introduced the 'System Request' key, intended as a non-maskable attention grabbing key. I don't think that was ever used either - though it did propagate into the 101/102 key keyboards later. Those of us who remember teletypes will recall the attention / break key as well - which never worked, trying to get attention on a round-robin timeshare system was always a pain - you kept getting timed out if you were a slow typist, and had to wait your turn ..

Comment: Re:Wow, they managed to break the idea of a cable! (Score 2) 663

by niks42 (#44916253) Attached to: Apple Starts Blocking Unauthorized Lightning Cables With iOS 7
It was exactly this point about anti-competitive practices that made sure IBM did not patent the PS/2 mini-DIN Connector. Hello, we even agonised for months over whether we should bundle the mouse with the computer or not, since that might be seen to exclude fair competition. Trying to balance between shipping a product that was complete, and would work when it arrived and ensuring that competitors had a fair chance at shipping their product in the place of one of IBMs was difficult, when IBM was a behemoth trying to be good.

Comment: .. for sending fax from the computer (Score 1) 410

by niks42 (#44873101) Attached to: The last time I used a dial-up modem was...
I had to fax my timesheets to an agency not so long ago .. got the old dial-up modem out, found a power supply for it, plugged it in, installed software, found a phone cable that actually worked .. all because my printer had run out of paper for me to walk to the fax machine with ..

The number of arguments is unimportant unless some of them are correct. -- Ralph Hartley

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