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Edsac Goes Live, At UK's National Museum of Computing

Anne Thwacks Re:These guys rule (29 comments)

Building complex machines with nothing but some photographs to go on.

Actually, there are real people still alive who remember it.

4 hours ago
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Is LTO Tape On Its Way Out?

Anne Thwacks Re:A bit of wisdom (273 comments)

Never under-estimate the price of a 1/2" tape from Andrew S Tanebaum.

If they had been cheaper, I would have been using Unix three years earlier!

Never under-estimate the disaster of a station wagon full of LTO6 tapes hurtling down the Grand Canyon! (I said that).

(Or major Glacier down time, just when you need it).

yesterday
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Is LTO Tape On Its Way Out?

Anne Thwacks Re:Tape Culture Fallacy (273 comments)

It is normally impassible due to time constraints to do a restore check after every backup.

I thnn you mean "impossible",

You dont need to check restore after every backup, but you most certainly need to do it quarterly, after every OS upgrade, and probably any time hardware is modded/reconfigured, or tampered with.

DO NOT USE PROPRIETRY BACKUP SOFTWARE FOR ARCHIVE - EVER! When you want the data back, the company will be dead and buried, and any documentation of the tape format will not relate to the version you were using. I used to work for a company that made popular tape backup software (it was very fast). For 8 months the restore function was seriously defective and not a single customer reported it. (OK, it was in the days of QIC02).

If the data has any long term value, use tar. Tar from RSX11 days is still readable on FreeBSD - I have tried it. Not using Unix? It is safe to assume you don't need the data anyway!

yesterday
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Is LTO Tape On Its Way Out?

Anne Thwacks Re:Shyeah, right. (273 comments)

So GCHQ, the NSA, and a few random third world hackers have replicated your data. That does not mean you can get it when you need it (at a reasonable price). I have no doubt you can get insurance, but that is not the same as actually having the data.

2 days ago
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Is LTO Tape On Its Way Out?

Anne Thwacks Re:Shyeah, right. (273 comments)

Chances are it will work, but I wouldn't be surprised if it failed.

That is why we keep three copies of the data on each of the three tapes. I too have read tapes over 30 years old. I have not read floppies and CDs that were less than 3 yearsl old, and no longer own an ST506 interface or even a pre-PCI motherboard (well perhaps I do. but I cant find it).

I am backing LTO.

2 days ago
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NYC To Replace Most of Its Payphones With Free Gigabit WiFi In 2015

Anne Thwacks Re:expect verizon and at&t to sue (106 comments)

In a real emergency, you need Facebook, not 911.

about two weeks ago
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World's Youngest Microsoft Certificated Professional Is Five Years Old

Anne Thwacks Re:Exactly why we test all candidates. (276 comments)

Air Raid Precautions were essential during WW2, but I'm not sure what their relevance is to IT workers in 2014.

Think of the drone strikes! Tin foil is not enough. You need real tin hats.

Put that light out!

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Dealing With VoIP Fraud/Phishing Scams?

Anne Thwacks Re: Record an Apology (159 comments)

You missed the bit about "Nuke from high orbit, just to be sure!"

about two weeks ago
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Worrying Aspects of Linux Gaming

Anne Thwacks Re:Please, Please, Please (265 comments)

But Ford will crush Chrysler, BMW and Mercedes "real soon now". Just as communism is about to defeat capitalism. We only need one motor manufacturer - I hope its not Lada!

about two weeks ago
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British Spies Are Free To Target Lawyers and Journalists

Anne Thwacks Re:It's what you do with it that counts (184 comments)

Hang on, in the 70s, London was having bombings like that - by the American funded IRA.

In those days, we did not wet our knickers and give up our privacy (much), and carried on regardless with a stiff upper lip.

I don't know what went wrong, but this is just as small part of it. personally, I blame cheap hard disks.

about three weeks ago
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British Spies Are Free To Target Lawyers and Journalists

Anne Thwacks Re:If a lawyer or journalist needs protection (184 comments)

do they spy on politicians over there too?

Several Prime Ministers have been spied upon as potential Soviet agents - so the answer you are looking for is YES

They are spies - they spy on everyone if they did not spy on everyone, how would they know who to spy on? Should you trust them? If you dont know how to think for yourself, then the answer does not matter.

about three weeks ago
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Big Data Knows When You Are About To Quit Your Job

Anne Thwacks Re:Algorithm (185 comments)

It looks like that would probably be as reliable as what they do use, but cheaper to implement.

about three weeks ago
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Big Data Knows When You Are About To Quit Your Job

Anne Thwacks Re:Taking the Human out of Human Resources (185 comments)

We are getting close to that in parts of the world, and it is spreading fast.

It used to be because the labour content was exported, but robots are replacing the offshore jobs/manufacturing.

It is time to come up with a new model of who gets what, and why. and how to implement it.

Or Ebola just may do it for us.

about three weeks ago
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French Health Watchdog: 3D Viewing May Damage Eyesight In Children

Anne Thwacks Re:3d (99 comments)

The reality is that TV, 3D or not, is unsuitable for people of any age. Have you watched Cartoon Network? That stuff MUST cause brain damage for sure!

about three weeks ago
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French Health Watchdog: 3D Viewing May Damage Eyesight In Children

Anne Thwacks Re:I'm not a scientist... (99 comments)

Nope. There is no way to get round the convergence-accomodation problem, except when the image is both logically and physically so far away that 3D is irrelevant.

3D is a bad idea. It makes your head hurt because you are experiencing the impossible. If it does not make your head hurt, then it is doing you harm.

about three weeks ago
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Crowdsourcing Project Predicts Progression of ALS

Anne Thwacks Re:Too late for Lou Gehrig (29 comments)

Or perhaps What is it?

Please can we have using TLAs without explaining them made a criminal offence.

about three weeks ago
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Android 5.0 Makes SD Cards Great Again

Anne Thwacks Re:Because cloud (214 comments)

Duh, it's a network device, everyone has unlimited network access everywhere don't they?

Well GCHQ and the NSA have unlimited access everywhere. I don't know about anyone else.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Captchas - data on human failures?

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  about 5 months ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "Today, once again, I failed to pass a captcha. I promise I am really human. However, my eyesight is not what it was 20 years ago.
I normally give up after two attempts. And no, MP3's are not the answer. As far as I am concerned, speakers on PCs are NSFW.
Does anyone have any data on what percentage of Captcha failures are actually humans? Does anyone ever check how much traffic they lose through humans failing captchas? How would you check anyway?"
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Eye strain and ADHD

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "Once you are over 40, the lenses in your eyes become hard. The means your eyes lose the ability to “accommodate” — that is, the ability to adjust their focus from far to near If you are naturally long sighted, you will need to use reading glasses. If you are naturally short sighted, you probably needed glasses anyway – but will now need to wear them more often, and may need varifocals or several pairs of glasses for different distances.

If your glasses are not perfect, and possibly even if they are, the lack of accommodation means your eyes have to strain to focus as the eye muscles pull on the inflexible lenses. I find this straining does often enable me to see things for a while without wearing my glasses, but eventually becomes quite painful. As a consequence of this, I have an increasing tendency not to actually even try to focus, but instead to try and guess, possibly relying on occasional glances.

I am now finding that the pain of focussing to achieve fovic vision is not just leading to me “not looking” but is being associated with paying attention, and I am finding it hard to pay attention, not just for long periods, but at all, because some part of me fears the pain.

Is it possible that one cause of ADHD is poor eyesight?"
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Norton Insecurity

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "A colleague of mine has developed a web shop for his client. The shop is working, but people visiting it with Norton Security on their computer are advised that the site is risky, which is clearly damaging its business prospects.

A visit to Norton's web site suggests that they will remove this notice if he signs up to their program. While this might be free (or might not), it is not something he wishes to do.

How is this not an illegal extortion racket, and illegal restraint of commerce?"
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Someone else's rights offline!

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "Nigerian Musicians are having a one- day strike as a protest against piracy!BBC Story

Some people might actually welcome a RIAN!

Of course, those of us living in Europe can only get pirate copies of Nigerian music, so we are not affected by this strike. However, you are welcome to check some Nigerian music on youtube"
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How should I "sell" a game concept?

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "I have invented a completely new type of game, which might have very wide appeal. There is no chance of me coding it myself, as my skills are not in the right area. (Ever tried coding a game entirely in SQL?) It needs the kind of skills used to produce team sports games (NBA, FIFA, etc) but is not sport. It is potentially both single and multi-player, with team playing and global networked versions possible. It would appeal to both sexes, with good appeal to older players (limited appeal to aliens* and superheros predicted). It would benefit from a Wiimote type interface.

This is really something that could only be done using computers (ie no board-game or ASCII* version possible), as it requires interaction, visual presentation and live motion.

I dont want to reveal too much in case someone else takes the idea and runs with it.

Who should I approach, and how?

(*Actually, an ASCII version might appeal to aliens, but not to many humans!)"
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Car computer wanted

Anne Thwacks Anne Thwacks writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Anne Thwacks (531696) writes "I want to play DVDs in my car, and use SatNav, visit Slashdot, Google, Wikipedia, update my timesheet, invoice clients, read spam?



Can you get a computer that would fit in the DIN slot where a car stereo goes, and runs Windows/FreeeBSD/BeOS/why. Something like those screens you pull out and flip up?

Are there any that /.ers recommend, or recommend avoiding? Where can I get one (in the UK)"

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