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Submission + - Stephen Hawking to give Reith lecture

peetm writes: This year’s BBC Reith Lecturer* is the UK's most famous scientist. His mind has probed the great mysteries of the universe. He’s Professor Stephen Hawking of course, and if you’ve got a question for him, now’s your chance.

He’ll be lecturing about black holes, and then taking questions from BBC Radio 4 listeners on any subject under the sun. Or well beyond it!

* The Reith Lectures is a series of annual radio lectures given by leading figures of the day, commissioned by the BBC and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and the BBC World Service.

Comment Getting on, but still hopeful (Score 1) 160

As the title says, I'm getting on now - and even thinking of properly retiring.

Ever since I was aware of such things, I was always very much more than hopeful - convinced really - that we would receive some signal (in a 'Contact' fashion) before I was placed into my box (cremate/inter :- hey surprise me!) An example of self-centred hubris in the ‘belief of ourselves’, including me of course!

Still, I live in hope.

Goodness knows what it would do to all those religious fundamentalists though!

Submission + - The Guardian's machine destroyed by GCHQ on show (

peetm writes: The remains of computers used to store top-secret documents leaked by the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, which were symbolically destroyed by Guardian editors while being watched by GCHQ representatives, are to be displayed at the V&A. Although I query whether it's the remains of a MacBook Air!

Submission + - What keyboard for a professional developer?

peetm writes: Christmas is coming, and as my PC's keyboard is near its end (as it is for many a Turkey and Goose), I'm thinking of asking Santa for a new one.

I often work late at night — always in low-light — and so a back-lit keyboard would be a bonus. I should add that I don't play games, and would be completely disinterested in any gaming-type feature on a keyboard.

Santa of course needs some advance warning, and I would very much welcome /. members' keyboard suggestions!

Submission + - The girlfriend of a student asks - what books for an M.Sc., ...

peetm writes: Having visited with me and my wife recently, the girlfriend of an ex-student of mine asks ..

"... He recently mentioned that he would love to have a home library, like the one you have, with variety of good, useful and must-have books from different authors. I wonder if you would be so kind to advise me on this. Mostly, I was thinking your advice would be priceless when it comes to computer science related books, but .. I would appreciate any sort of advice on books from you. ..."

This ex-student is now taking an M.Sc. in CS (pure), and whilst I could scan my own library for ideas, I doubt that I'm really that 'current' with what's good, or whether my favourites would be appropriate: I've not taught on the M.Sc. course for a while, and in some cases, and just given their price, I shouldn't really recommend such books that are just pet loves of mine — especially to someone who doesn't know whether they'd even be useful to her boyfriend.

And, before you ask: YES, we do have a reading list, but given that he'll receive this as part of this course requirement anyway, I'd like to tease readers to suggest good reads around the periphery of the subject.

Submission + - Royal pardon for codebreaker Alan Turing (

peetm writes: A little late in coming, and surely welcomed by all right thinking people, computer pioneer and codebreaker Alan Turing has been given a posthumous royal pardon. It overturns his 1952 conviction for homosexuality which meant he lost his security clearance and had to stop the code-cracking work that proved critical to the Allies in World War II.

Comment abysmal (Score 1) 1191

If you'd have just added a Facebook 'Like' widget (I didn't just miss that did I?), you would have won first prize for the worst, most shit like news site that I thought could only exist in a nightmare.

Summary: it's fucking awful!

Prediction: you'll just ahead anyway.

Comment Re:Sad loss. (Score 1) 98

>>and they spent too much time trying to get it to run windows programs

Who did?

I worked on the Windows Libraries for OS/2 (WLO) and it was a pure Microsoft effort, and it worked just fine thank you very much - in fact, thanks to some of the features we could take advantage of, like PM's graphics paths, we could out perform Win 3.1 too.

"Survey says..." -- Richard Dawson, weenie, on "Family Feud"