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Gareth Corfield

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

The UK's National Grid has planted the first of its new "T-pylons" — an elegant alternative to the traditional steel lattice monsters currently straddling Blighty's green and pleasant land. The T-pylon was born from a 2011 competition won by Danish architects Bystrup, who came up with a 35 meter-high monopole base design, …
Spy hides in dustbin, lifts lid to take photograph

UK Supreme Court waves through indiscriminate police surveillance

Comment A Supreme Court decision handed down on Wednesday has given carte blanche to police forces to retain personal data they have collected for virtually any purpose and hold it as long as they like – even when the people targeted are not violent and have committed no crime. The case, R (on the application of Catt) (AP) (Respondent) …
Gareth Corfield, 08 Mar 2015
HP ZBook 17 mobile workstation

HP's great – I prefer it on bacon rather than my printer, though

CoTW What do you do when you find out someone's been shipping PCs with a series of critical flaws baked into the software on them? You blame Microsoft, of course, even though they were completely unrelated to anything that happened. Bronze-badged 'tard Buzzword did just this after reading about Lenovo's Superfish scumware, which came …
Gareth Corfield, 22 Feb 2015
internet explorer 8

Norton Internet Security antivirus update 'borked Internet Explorer'

Users of the world's second best* browser were forced to use alternatives after an overnight update to Norton AntiVirus prevented Internet Explorer from working at all. Aggrieved users who'd thought far enough ahead to install Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or any of the other alternatives took to Norton's official forum to vent …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Feb 2015

Seven months of Basil Brush on YouTube: Er, boom boom?

Legendary stuffed TY character Basil Brush will now be available on YouTube, after TV bosses reportedly refused to give him fresh airtime. According to the Daily Mirror, Brush will be releasing a new sketch every Monday for the next 32 weeks. Brush, who, we are told, is currently on a nationwide tour, said: “I was on the Beeb …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Feb 2015
Exploding Kitten Goal Cartoon

Kickstarter folk pay $8 MEELLION for joys of EXPLODING KITTENS

Cat-loving Kickstarter users have coughed up more than $8m for the pleasure of Exploding Kittens, dethroning hackable games console Ouya as the crowdfunding website's most highly funded game of all time. Exploding Kittens is a comedy card game cooked up by XBox chaps Elan Lee and Shane Small, along with Matthew Inman, the brains …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Feb 2015

Oi, Kanye. BEYONCE deserves that gTLD more than you do

CoTW Bronze-badged commentard thomas k. opened this week's batting with a right corker about Kanye West and Beyonce. On the news that Kanye West is launching a new website on a new global top level domain, he said: I think ... Beyonce deserves that gTLD more than he does. The Great Tardmangling Machine isn't quite sure what this is …
Gareth Corfield, 15 Feb 2015
shutterstock_164559860

'If someone in Australia says lick my toad, it's not a euphemism'

CoTW The application of one's tongue to an Australian amphibian is no laughing matter. Neither, for that matter, are conspiracy theories around the launch of the Raspberry Pi 2 or love/hate reactions to Phil Zimmerman. Yes, it's Comment of the Week time. Opening this week's snorkworthy commentardery was Simple Si, who pitched up with …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Feb 2015
What Linus Torvalds thinks of NVIDIA

'Linus Torvalds is UNFIT for the WORKPLACE!' And you've given the world what, exactly?

CoTW Pirates on copyright, state surveillance and Linux – another joyous week of your comments below the line. Yup, it's Comment of the Week time. An Anonymous Coward decided to have a go at the Linux in-crowd this week, hurling a hefty brick at Linus Torvalds after the Linux daddy said "I'm not a nice person and I don't care about …
Gareth Corfield, 24 Jan 2015
Guardian's smashed computer

Increased gov spy powers are NOT the way to stay safe against terrorism

Opinion As various unsavoury characters scrabble to grab the limelight after the Charlie Hebdo mass murders in Paris, the British government is using the atrocities to justify yet more intrusive snooping powers to use against ordinary people. The Home Secretary told Parliament that because the French authorities might have used …
Gareth Corfield, 18 Jan 2015
Grand Theft Auto (1997)

'Yeah, I'm like, SO backing Microsoft over Google, YAH'

CoTW A close runner-up – but still no cigar – was commentard Pat Att, who, on the news that Google was funding the printing of millions of copies of Charlie Hebdo, came out and said: Well done Google fund And well done The Register for showing the Charlie Hebdo covers. #JeSuisCharlie No further comment needed on that one. Driving …
Gareth Corfield, 18 Jan 2015
Elephant

This boat can move 234,989 cubic pink elephants! (honest)

CoTW A big boat came to Britain this week, and boy oh boy did the BBC spaff its pants with joy. Following up on Al-Beeb's breathless report of the CSCL Globe making a port call at Felixstowe, our own Lester Haines of the Special Projects Bureau commented on the state broadcaster's Olympic-sized field day. As for you lot, however, …
Gareth Corfield, 11 Jan 2015
NASA travel poster for Kepler-16b crop

Boffins open 'space travel bureau': Come relax on exoplanet Kepler-16b, says NASA

Pics NASA appears to be transforming itself into an intergalactic travel agency after issuing a series of cheery posters of exoplanets. "Kepler-186f is the first Earth-size planet discovered in the potentially 'habitable zone' around another star, where liquid water could exist on the planet's surface," said NASA's blurb. Visit …
Gareth Corfield, 08 Jan 2015

Microsoft has made excellent software, you pack of fibbers

CoTW Happy New Year, one and all. This post-festive edition of Comment of the Week will gently drop you back into the simmering gloop of El Reg's commentardery, slicing and dicing the merely-bad along with the very worst of the below-the-line offerings. Cheers! Over the Christmas season our motoring correspondent Simon Rockman took a …
Gareth Corfield, 04 Jan 2015
GCHQ is following you on Twitter, Faceboo, email...

UK.gov: Sod SIGINT, let's turn GCHQ into a TECH CRECHE

UK spy agency GCHQ wants to become an incubator for the next generation of tech entrepreneurs, according to a story doing the rounds in this morning's newspapers. The Independent reports that the proposed scheme will be modelled on the Teach First programme, where graduates work in difficult schools for two years before swanning …
Gareth Corfield, 02 Jan 2015
Tony Blair closes the RSA 2012 conference

Freedom of Info at 10: Tony Blair's WORST NIGHTMARE

Although the Freedom of Information Act was passed in 2000, it didn't come into force until 1 January 2005, meaning we've had just about 10 years of FoI – as the Information Commissioner's Office was keen to point out in a minor PR blizzard. That load of celebratory snippets* included such worthy-but-dull moments as the first …
Gareth Corfield, 28 Dec 2014
Lee Enfield No.4 rifle. Pic: Gareth Corfield

Brit GUN NUT builds WORKING SNIPER RIFLE at home out of scrap metal!

Downrange We here on the El Reg gun sensation desk considered getting Gaz to make an unimportant part or accessory for his Lee Enfield out of 3D printed plastic, or in some other fashion involve a computer, which would probably have led to excited writeups in the world's media about Brit GUN NUT 3D PRINTS working SNIPER RIFLE in SHED, …
Gareth Corfield, 14 Dec 2014

'Why do Register commentards get so frothy-mouthed?' Thus started WW3

CoTW Short, sweet and funny. What, we like these things. Just smile and be happy already. Opening this week's commentardery, AidanH came up with a short funny one which made the Great Tardmangling Machine chuckle to itself, alarming its overseers considerably: HMRC called their system MOSS... well played. I assume their next project …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Dec 2014
Parliament in the clouds

Parliament: All's well with RIPA snooping, no problem here

Comment The Investigatory Powers Tribunal yesterday declared GCHQ's mass spying is perfectly lawful – and today the government announces it will not be doing anything about mass-snooping law RIPA either. Trebles all round! Today the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee (HAC) released its report into the Regulation of Investigatory …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Dec 2014
Golden Dropping of Excellence

VISUALISED: The Golden Vulture Dropping of Excellence

CoTW After a short break for fresh air and relief from the hilarity of El Reg's commentards, Comment of the Week returns! Opening this week's account of the hilarious and the fail-filled is aptly named commentard Phuq Witt, with this dreadfully dull and unfunny aside on our review of the Banana Pi: "I met a Minecraft user called …
Gareth Corfield, 29 Nov 2014
Policeman claps in London street

Jacking up firearms fees will cost SMEs £3.5 MILLION. Thanks, Plod

Downrange The Home Office has admitted that police plans to force a 76 per cent hike in the cost of a firearm certificate will cost firearms dealers alone £700,000, with gamekeepers and vets being smacked with a further £2.8m in government-imposed fees. A consultation on the proposed increase in firearms fees, issued earlier this week, …
Gareth Corfield, 29 Nov 2014
Circuit board underwear by emiko-o

'Open source just means big companies can steal your code.' O RLY?

CoTW In a simply shocking turn of events, two of the less popular comments on El Reg this week both came from Anonymous Cowards... The first of our be-masked brethren introduced some welcome levity into the net neutrality bunfight, commenting on someone who filed the entirety of a Lord of the Rings script as part of an FCC complaint …
Gareth Corfield, 16 Nov 2014
President Putin doing judo

What? El Reg had a cheap dig at Putin?! SAY IT AIN'T SO

CoTW Dissing Vladimir Putin and re-publishing all those hilarious "macho" PR pics of him over the years is a public service. Unfortunately, one Register commentard disagrees. Happily, you all disagree with him. DISAGREECEPTION. First, before we show you that particular snippet, here's a few other little gobbets of joy from this week' …
Gareth Corfield, 09 Nov 2014
hurrah

Police in U-turn as 'shop a gun-owner' hotline is scrapped

Downrange A Crimestoppers hotline set up specifically to target legal gun owners has been shut down following a campaign by the Countryside Alliance. The hotline was set up after the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), the trade union for top cops in Blighty, announced a raft of measures targeting the licensed firearms community …
Gareth Corfield, 09 Nov 2014
anonymousXENUCAKE

Million Mask March: Anonymous' London Guy Fawkes protest a damp squib

Pics Anonymous' #MillionMaskMarch hit London amid a flurry of fireworks on the symbolic date of 5 November, Guy Fawkes night. Despite the symbolism, it was pretty lame. Your correspondent, fresh from a hard day staring at screens and drinking tea, wandered along to Trafalgar Square to see what the fuss was all about. There was a …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Nov 2014

Yes, Samaritans, the law DOES apply to you. Even if you mean well

Downrange Earlier this week suicide prevention and counselling charity the Samaritans launched an app that scans Twitter timelines and alerts users whenever anyone appears to be depressed. Yet the backlash against this creepy automated scanning is astonishing – and the Samaritans appear to be ducking their legal obligations. As we …
Gareth Corfield, 02 Nov 2014
Suri Cruise poop

Let's make an app that POSTS your POO to APPLE HQ

CoTW Can we build an app that automatically delivers large quantities of human excrement to Apple's doorstep? That is the question frothing on fanbois' lips as we enter another Comment of the Week. On last week's exclusive announcement of the new “bump to dump” app Ploppr, silver-badged commentard Pen-y-gors opened the batting with …
Gareth Corfield, 26 Oct 2014

'It's NOT a fishing expedition', say police over random spot checks on gun owners

Downrange As opposition to the Association of Chief Police Officers' campaign to impose random spot checks on lawful gun owners' security arrangements grows, El Reg managed to get some responses out of the police chiefs' trade union. “We have not encouraged forces to use any powers of entry at all, however should the need arise depending …
Gareth Corfield, 26 Oct 2014
Sportsman with moderated rifle in snow. Pic: Juha Perovuo

Police stats inflate the number of guns actually stolen in Blighty

Analysis The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has claimed that more legally owned firearms were lost or stolen over the last few years than appears to be the case, according to an exclusive analysis by The Register. The discrepancy casts doubt on a new initiative pillorying gun owners for being careless about gun security. …
Gareth Corfield, 20 Oct 2014
London BMW 5-Series police car

Are you a gun owner? Let us in OR ELSE, say Blighty's top cops

Downrange The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has announced a legal tweak intended to allow police officers to turn up at the homes of gun owners, without warning, and demand to inspect guns stored on the premises. A new Crimestoppers hotline is also in operation to encourage people to dob in gun owners they suspect of …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Oct 2014
Space pizza

Space exploration is just so lame. NEW APPS are mankind's future

CoTW What's more important: Angry Birds or the Space Shuttle? According to one Register commentard, it's the former. No, really - and yes, it's time for Comment of the Week once again. Silver-badged commentard Irongut opened this week's batting after weighing in on the news that Martha Lane Fox, or Baroness Lane-Fox of Soho, doesn't …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Oct 2014

10 Top Tips For PRs Considering Whether To Phone The Register

Rant So. You're a PR. Your boss, client, giant David Icke-style lizard or whatever it is you people have in charge of you, has ordered you to telephone The Register. Here's a handy list of things for you to consider before you do that. Do not EVER call us to ask whether we read your email. If you feel the need to ask the question …
Gareth Corfield, 12 Oct 2014

I've got a new Linux box, how does it work... WOAH, only asking :-/

CoTW You're an average Joe. You have a Windows computer you're fairly fed up with, for whatever reason. So you decide to try out Linux. Yet, naturally, you're a bit confused about how it all works so you take to the support forums. What do you think happens next? Firing up passions on both sides of the great Linux/non-Linux users' …
Gareth Corfield, 11 Oct 2014
Win8 Metro Screen

Dear Reg readers. I want Metro tiles to replace ALL ICONS in Windows. Is this a good idea?

CoTW UX. Two little letters that cause so much angst, frustration and passion to spill over. Especially if someone suggests that tiles are a feature of Windows which should be extended over everything. Our beloved commentards, full of peace, love and goodwill towards their fellow internet users, were really very unimpressed with the …
Gareth Corfield, 05 Oct 2014
Bisley rifle range target. Credit: Darryl Stark

Be nice to the public, PC Plod. Especially if you're trying to stop terrorists

Opinion Terrorism. A word which strikes fear, or quite possibly boredom, into the hearts of millions across the Western world. Add “terrorism” to “guns” and you've got a legitimate area of public concern. But what do you do when the police, acting with the best of intentions, repeatedly insert their collective feet into their mouths? A …
Gareth Corfield, 04 Oct 2014
Double Facepalm; when one facepalm is not enough.

Emma Watson should SHUT UP, all this abuse is HER OWN FAULT

CoTW What should you do when a mature and sensible website like The Register (stop that sniggering at the back) offers you an anonymous commenting option? Why, abuse it flagrantly to blame the victim, of course! First, though, before the tidal wave of infuriated outrage clicking the headline reaches the commentard in question and …
Gareth Corfield, 28 Sep 2014

Special pleading against mass surveillance won't help anyone

Earlier this week we discovered that not only are London's Metropolitan Police rampantly abusing data-snooping laws to hunt down and punish employees who talk to journalists, we also learned that they don't even bother counting how often they do this. Police abuse of these powers came to light, after police sources who talked to …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Sep 2014

Reg readers respond: Yes, it's time for Comment of the Week

CoTW Another week, another batch of angry flaming going on in the hallowed halls of El Reg's comments threads. Naturally, we've sliced and diced this week's choicest comments for your amusement - and enragement. This week's contenders for the Golden Vulture Dropping of Agreement are a relatively modest and temperate crowd, which …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Sep 2014
Stonehenge from the north east

Stonehenge's HUMAN ABATTOIR was just a prehistoric Burning Man hippyfest site

CoTW Comment of the Week: In which Vulture Central's very own backroom gremlins award you, dear readers, the Golden Vulture Dropping of Hilarity and the Wooden Twig of Fail for your inane witterings scintillating nuggets of wisdom. In reverse order this week, we'll be going through those comments which made both us and you laugh, cry …
Gareth Corfield, 13 Sep 2014
Derisive laugh

Oi, you don't work here, MR ANYTHING BUT incisive – get your grubby mitts off our commentards

CoTW This has been a glorious week in the sacred history* of this column: we caught a rival's reporter trying to use The Register's own comments sections to find a story. Enter stage right Jack Gilbert, a reporter with a website which we're not going to tell you the name of (why? Screw giving them free advertising, that's why) – but …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Sep 2014
Police outside 10 Downing Street. Credit: zongo

Warrantless phone snooping HAPPENS ALL THE TIME in Blighty

It's perfectly legal for the police to slurp up the phone records of any entity they take a dislike to, without any external oversight whatsoever, for the purpose of punishing whistleblowers. If you didn't realise this was possible, you've not been paying attention for the last decade. Earlier this week the Metropolitan Police …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Sep 2014
Bisley rifle range target. Credit: Darryl Stark

What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?

One thing the British state does well is waste money – as evidenced by its pouring of taxpayers' cash into millionaire model Lily Cole's online wishing well Impossible.com, or, say, fining itself hundreds of thousands for its pisspoor data security practices. Yet when it comes to firearms licensing, surprisingly few people see …
Gareth Corfield, 31 Aug 2014
Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/eddiedangerous/ licensed under creative commons http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ please attribute

'I think photographers get TOO MUCH copyright for their work'

CoTW Copyright is a basic property right. It's one of those fundamental things you just don't muck around with: if someone creates something and others want to use it, they should be paid. Everyone agrees with this - except for one Register reader... This week commentard JeffyPoooh caught a virtual packet from the rest of you for his …
Gareth Corfield, 31 Aug 2014

The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal

Some of you may already be familiar with our sub-editor Gareth Corfield's work as he is usually the man behind our social-media presence. You. Yes, you. Reading this now. You're reading this on a website where potential TERRORISTS operate. Aren't you scared? Why haven't you clicked away? You support this form of terrorism, don' …
Gareth Corfield, 25 Aug 2014

'I'll dance on their graves at 1 MILLION operations per second'

CoTW Welcome to The Register's new Comments of the Week feature. Here you'll find the best – and worst – of the stuff written below the line by El Reg's bafflingly diverse field of commentards. Just remember: we love you all. Even when your fellow commentards don't. The commentard who wins the “most popular” award this week is …
Gareth Corfield, 24 Aug 2014
Lancaster B.I PA474. Credit: John5199, Flickr

World's only flyable WWII Lancaster bombers meet in Lincs

Aviation history is being made in Lincolnshire today as the only two airworthy Avro Lancasters in the world met up at RAF Coningsby this afternoon. The two World War II bombers – one operated by the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum (CWHM), the other by the RAF's Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) – are due to rendezvous …
Gareth Corfield, 08 Aug 2014
Edward Snowden

Snowden is FREE to ESCAPE FROM RUSSIA, say officials

Russia has given fugitive NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden a three year residency permit after his previous visa expired at the end of July. Snowden's lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, told journalists that Snowden's request for a residence permit had been granted. “He will be able to travel freely within the country and go abroad,” …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Aug 2014
Targeted Spam

Fed-up bloke takes email spammers to court – and WINS PILE of CASH

It's 9am. You open your email client and wade through the usual pile of spam that's dropped in overnight. It's boring and tiresome. But what if you could earn yourself a few hundred quid and kill the spam off as well? In a landmark court hearing last week, Sky News producer Roddy Mansfield won unspecified damages from retail …
Gareth Corfield, 05 Jun 2014

'Maybe I'll go to Hell, but I think it's a good thing' says plastic Liberator gunsmith Cody Wilson

Interview For a man some perceive as an audacious libertarian who puts untraceable weapons into the hands of criminals, Cody Wilson is a surprisingly ordinary fellow, albeit one who gets quite animated about 3D-printed guns, Bitcoin and "crypto-anarchism". At an event organised by the Adam Smith Institute in London, the 26-year-old spoke …
Gareth Corfield, 22 Apr 2014
Sheep

IT bloke denies trying to shag sheep outside football ground

An IT worker has appeared in court accused of trying to have sex with a sheep outside football club Tottenham Hotspur's training ground in North London. Paul Lovell, of Magpie Close, Enfield, North London, faces a charge of indecent exposure under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 as well as a further charge of outraging public …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Sep 2013