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Comment A what comic? (Score 2) 321

What the heck is a web comic anyway? They're all on the web now. I'd rather see a poll for best non-web comic.

I'd vote for Steve Bell's If... strips as published in The Guardian, but you murkans wouldn't get the jokes. He was also meta before it was mainstream, one of his penguin characters joking in a strip about "the baggy-eyed yanks upstairs" when If... was printed underneath Doonesbury.

Comment Just don't buy them (Score 3, Interesting) 321

I bought a Sony DVR/DVD player about four years ago. It booted up with a choice of EPGs - a plain one, and one with additional functionality and adverts. Yes, half the screen was occupied by ads. After getting annoyed with that after about two microseconds I switched to the plain one.

After a couple of years it started misbehaving, as these things do, telling me that the only thing on TV was 'No Channel Information'. So I thought I'd switch back and see how bad the ad-ridden one was. So I found the setting deep in the unexplored regions of the menu system and flipped.

Same old ad-ridden screen, except this time the ads were blank placeholders. I reckon nobody wanted to advertise there, since nobody was using the annoying EPG...

I did an upgrade from a new OS via a DVD from the Sony web site and it fixed most of the EPG blankness, but the thing has been pretty flakey from day one. I think the initial flakeyness is controlled to be just enough that you don't know if its your own fault for not reading the instructions or if it is genuine faults. Products are always released when the cost in fixing the bugs is more than the cost of handling support calls, right?

Anyway, no more Sony for me.

Comment Rat murderer (Score 1) 356

I tried to find this paper online but I don't think its available as a preprint yet. But I did find that the lead author has been stuffing rats with assorted GMO foods for many years. Sometimes its kidney failure, sometimes its cancer, maybe sometimes nothing happens. The important thing is how many negative results he's had and not published. That's statistical GMO cherry-picking.

Comment Re:Knobs and switches (Score 1) 233

One of my diesel engine glow plugs failed on holiday so I fixed it by shorting that plug (they're wired in series) with a metal coathanger onto the terminals with a big pair of pliers! How did you know!?

Actually, no, the car started from cold with a lot of starter motor cranking until I fixed it later by bypassing that plug with a simple connector.

I'm pretty sure the army, navy, royal marines, SAS, police, mountain rescue and almost every farmer in Britain wouldn't have "rich main's toys"!

Comment Knobs and switches (Score 2) 233

My 1983 Series 3 Land Rover has big chunky knobs and large switches for everything. Engineers have been happy with those things for the user interface for a hundred years, why change now?

Reliability? Not judging by the 'my car UI failed after 3 months and spent two weeks getting a replacement' post.

Probably marketing (look at the gee-whiz dashboard! See its shiny goodness!) and maybe even insurance (so they can tell if you did indicate or were fiddling with the radio before crashing) and also built-in obsolescence (oh, you need an upgrade, $$$ plz kthx, no, nobody else can fix it) unlike on a car with knobs and switches where anyone can replace a switch.

I hope these touch screens work with gloves on...

My Land Rover does have two switches on the centre of the dashboard that I have no idea what they do...

Comment Re:You can't get rid of automated / off-site backu (Score 1) 547

Backups should only be available to admins, who will have probably had full access to your data all the time you've been working there.

Wiping the disk will stop the next dumb user who is assigned your PC from seeing anything, even if they take the drive out and remount it somewhere.

But you can't stop the BOFH. What stops the BOFH is supposedly the possibility of being found out and then becoming unemployable.

Comment Step 0 (Score 2) 212

Security. 1977? You could open car locks with a bent pin. Central locking and immobilisers were probably a decade away in luxury models. Okay, maybe a van has better security in case it had a valuable cargo. But anyway, don't put 10k of tech in a vehicle that can be stolen with a bent wire coat hanger.

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