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back to article Microsoft Surface popped open, poked, prodded

The teardown-happy folks at iFixit have taken their Torx wrenches and spudgers to Microsoft's new Surface notebook tablet, but found few surprises inside. They did discover, however, that the Surface is more easily repairable than either the iPad 2 or its follow-on iPad 3 – aka "the new iPad". iFixit gave the Surface a …

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Anonymous Coward

Well that is surprising, judging by the reviews and videos showing how shockingly bad it is in real life [1] I was expecting it to be full of shit and hot gases.

[1] http://ozar.me/2012/10/why-im-returning-my-microsoft-surface-rt/

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Anonymous Coward

Went to a wedding last week and used my Nikon P300 to take some snaps and a couple of short videos. Hadn't realised that there were two people filming and taking photos of the events with iPads until I played the video.

It really does look stupid.

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Anonymous Coward

I've seen people recording events using their notebook's webcam, so that doesn't surprise me.

But what does it have to do with the topic at hand?

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Mushroom

You can take apart a piece of shit...

...but it's still a piece of shit.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You can take apart a piece of shit...

and if wit were shit, you'd be constipated.

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Hadn't realised that there were two people filming and taking photos of the events with iPads until I played the video. It really does look stupid.

Perhaps they could put a nice big bellows arrangement on the front, mount the whole thing on a tripod, and call it "retro chic".

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Coat

>>Perhaps they too realized how goofy you might look when taking pictures with a tablet.

I didn't believe people actually did that until I saw it with my own eyes at the weekend at the Fat Slag (the operators of the site prefer to refer to it as "Northumberlandia"). Tarquin was there taking a picture of granny after she'd removed the iPad from her huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge handbag. Made the pioneer days of Fox Talbot look positively portable.

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Windows

What I consider somewhat funny...

Is that the amount of tablet sales seem to be somewhat decreasing, according to the financial section of a local newspaper. Now, I'm not suggesting that this will spell doom for Microsoft, but I can't help wonder if MS hasn't set their sales expectations a little too high.

Time will tell I suppose, but I still think they're jumping in head first while totally ignoring everything else. And in the case of Windows "everything else" is where a large amount of the revenue comes from.

Oh well...

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Re: What I consider somewhat funny...

Considering how dominant Apple is in tablet sales, the "dip" might be due to the then-pending iPad update.

Just a thought.

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Where's the Nokia slab?

That's something I want to see torn down if their allowed to build one.

Great work on the colour descriptions btw.

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Re: Where's the Nokia slab?

Purpley-blue? I couldn't see it. I must get my monitor calibrated!

d'oh! I've just remembered I use a program called F.Lux to alter my screen's white balance according to the time of day. It's good, and lessens Chromes 'white flash of eye death' between web pages, but obviously does nothing for colour accuracy- though it can be toggled.

Nice touch on the belt and braces colour descriptions though!

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Coat

Re: Where's the Nokia slab?

In place above the waiting open grave?

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Boffin

Re: Where's the Nokia slab?

But WTF is "Violet with a Trace of Mauve" ?

The only one left is clearly "some kind of purple".

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Pint

Well written article.

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Meh

Photoshop?

Real hacks ought to be able to convert 8-bit decimal to hex without Photoshop, right?

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Holmes

Re: Photoshop?

A new version of Real Programmers don't use Pascal?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Photoshop? - in Pascal's defence....

If I may say, readers may be surprised just what is available FOR FREE these days for the Pascal enthusiast.

See http://wiki.freepascal.org/New_IDE_features_since#Docked_IDE for example.

If you're into building GUI apps, it's possible to do it completely free, away from MS .net or Java requirements.

Build an app with a nice GUI and compile it into a single executable file, capable of doing just about anything. Nice controls. Talks to your database, no problem. Compiled for lightning fast running.

If you can do it with C and its descendants, you can do it in the modern version of Pascal, which now has Objects and all. With readable code - you'll get used to Begin and End (the editor fills it in for you) rather than unhelpful { and }.

I've been looking at Python and Ruby but when it comes to creating GUI front ends it's a nightmarish mess. The Lazarus IDE (now at fully useful v1.0) and Free Pascal Compiler is a surprisingly good alternative. The old criticisms of Pascal simply don't apply any more. It's a modern, OO (if you want it), clear way to code.

Just thought I give credit where credit is due :)

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Anonymous Coward

Warning, warning

Please note that this device has sent a "temper-attempt detected" signal to Microsoft and the intervention team is on its way. This device will now self-destruct in 10, 9, please stand back, put your hands behind your head, 6, 5, 4, and await the arrival of our team, 2, 1, have a nice day.

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Re: Warning, warning

In a week in which we have nothing but James Bond gadget articles, you want to encourage The Reg to cover Mission Impossible gear?

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Megaphone

WTF is Mauve?

Pale Violet with a Trace of Mauve - seriously - WTF? Is this Woman's Own? Knitting Monthly? Real men - even IT "men" - don't do "Pale Violet with a Trace of Mauve". Everything is red, orange, yellow, green, blue or purple. Or brown (as in alert), Violet we can just about comprehend but not fucking Mauve. It's a made up colour for girls, like Cerise or Bisque (look - I'm married. My wife bandies these "colours" around *a lot* and expects me to know them too. I just nod and agree, otherwise I'll get angry, then she'll get angry and before you know it I'm sleeping on the couch - sorry, settee - again). If you have to give it a name call it Magenta - at least the printer guys will know what the fuck you are on about.

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Oh sod off whiner

If it's that big a deal then just play around with text colors in Firebug. If "goldenrod" is supported then I'm sure mauve is too.

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WTF?

Re: WTF is Mauve?

One word- Ecru.

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Re: WTF is Mauve?

Oh dear, thank heaven he didn't see the Mac mini teardown. I imagine that throbbing mulberry C54B8C vein in his forehead would have burst for sure.

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Coat

The really important number is "TTL"

Or simply "Time to Linux" so one can get rid of the silly Windoze 8. The only thing needed after that would be to get a refund of the "Microsoft Tax".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The really important number is "TTL"

And what is TTL, do you think? In general usage? Because I think we're somewhere around 21 years so far. Not exactly a scary number unless you were betting on linux to rule the worlld - oh, you were?

Nevermind. Maybe next year, eh?

suppressedlaughter.jpg

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Re: The really important number is "TTL"

I'm sorry, but in the real world, virtually everybody who actually does do work on a PC has Linux by now. It's just that over the years the amount of people who use their computers for work has shrunken by a great deal, so today you see most people using their computers as MP3-Players, gaming consoles or typewriters.

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Linux

Re: betting on linux to rule the worlld

Whilst you were pissing about with MS, it did.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The really important number is "TTL"

True, except for managers of course, for them you need to still support MS formats...

And corporate IT that INSISTS on using exchange when 90% of all the IT staff install Linux or use a MacBook.. in the company.

Grumble grumble... I hate MS Exchange....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The really important number is "TTL"

" virtually everybody who actually does do work on a PC has Linux by now."

For a limited, biased definition of work.

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Vic
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Re: The really important number is "TTL"

> I hate MS Exchange....

I don't. It's kept me fed on many occasions...

Vic.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: betting on linux to rule the worlld

"Whilst you were pissing about with MS, it did."

And amazingly, nobody except people posting on The Reg forums with penguin icons seems to have heard. You're quite entertaining. Can you post some more of your "real geek" material? Always best when someone tries too hard to paint themselves as a techie :)

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Re: betting on linux to rule the worlld

It might not rule the visible world, but an awful lot of what's hidden is running on Linux. Most home routers run a flavour of Linux, even my TV looks like it might understand Linux, too (it comes with a GPL licence). I've seen the in-flight entertainment on a 747 do a Linux reboot, too. Android is a specialised form of Linux, and I suspect much of Google's infrastructure started there, so most people are interacting with Linux even if they don't realise it.

In general it's getting on with running the world without making a fuss or eating your documents.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The really important number is "TTL"

I'm sorry, but in the real world, virtually everybody who actually does do work on a PC has Linux by now.

So....

Secretaries don't do work (Word). Accounts don't do work (Excel). Nobody uses Outlook. There is no such thing as a Powerpoint presentation or if there is, it's not work. Authors don't do work. Technical writers don't do work. Architects don't do work. Civil engineers don't do work. Land Rover (I mention them because I've worked there) don't do work. The Police don't do work. The MoD don't do work. The NHS never does any work.

Only you. You're the only one who does work.

I really don't have the words to express my disgust with you.

On a different note, I take the point about the billions of linux-based devices out there but be honest - 95% of them are single purpose SoCs that yes, you can and do use to do work provided your work consists of pressing a button on a machine or making a telephone call but other than that, linux in an actual working environment used as a day-to-day OS is rarer than hen's teeth.

I believe (do correct me if I'm wrong) that even including OSX the desktop market share is still less than 15%.

You can hate Windows all you like but attempting to marginalize an OS on literally billions of desktops around the work and used for hundreds of billions of man-days of actual work goes beyond dim and way, way into the realms of massive self-delusion or wishful thinking.

Carry your "I'm more of a nerd than you" badge with pride if that makes you feel special - personally, I think that identifying oneself via a choice of software or hardware is the behaviour of an individual of no self-worth and also of no worth to me or anyone else but it's your call - but don't tell yourselves lies.

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Re: The really important number is "TTL"

Secretaries don't do work (Word). Accounts don't do work (Excel). Nobody uses Outlook. There is no such thing as a Powerpoint presentation or if there is, it's not work. Authors don't do work. Technical writers don't do work. Architects don't do work. Civil engineers don't do work. Land Rover (I mention them because I've worked there) don't do work. The Police don't do work. The MoD don't do work. The NHS never does any work.

Hell, plenty of developers do work on non-Linux systems. I've been developing for Linux since the mid-1990s, and for UNIX since the late '80s. I've written software for embedded systems, 8-bit PCs, MS-DOS, Windows from version 2.0 on, OS/2, PDPs and VAXes, AS/400s, some mainframe OSes. These days I mostly write code for products that run on Windows, Linux, and the major UNIX flavors. I work under all those OSes - edit, build, debug, test.

But most of the time I work under Windows. Between the vastly overpowered hardware available these days, Cygwin and vim, and the ease of running VMs, there's no longer any compelling reason for me to boot into Linux. If I need a local Linux system I spin up a VM, but most of the time I just open a few ssh or Telnet sessions to a remote one. I don't much like Microsoft's debuggers, particularly Visual Studio, but I can work with it.

There's nothing magic about Linux for doing "real" work, any more than there is about Windows. I like to work from the command line, with a decent shell (and lots of instances of it open), a robust set of command-line text-processing tools, and vim as my editor. I'd have those under Linux (or *BSD or whatever), but I also have them under Windows. It's trivial to add them to a Windows system, so why go through the trouble of replacing the preinstalled OS? In fact, even if I worked under Linux most of the time, I'd do it in a VM, and keep Windows as the host OS, because it's simply not worth the effort of swapping them.

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What killjoy did not enjoy your crazy, over-the-top colour descriptions from the earlier article?

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Anonymous Coward

Am I missing something?

Why couldn't Reg display the colours using good ole' html?

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Coat

Re: Am I missing something?

Umm... Perhaps they could have used flash cards to identify the colours?

Oh wait, Steve Jobs banned flash.... mustn't upset the fanbois....

It's already off the peg. All right!

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Re: Am I missing something?

OR just numbers/letters like in almost every bit of documentation I've seen.

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Meh

Can we please use taupe for all indicators in future... it has a wide variety of tones, and makes just as much sense to me - or any variation of colour-blindness...

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WTF?

What's with the notebook, er, tablet slur?

This is the second article I've read this week written by a Californicator using the notebook-no-tablet slur. Is this the humor doing the rounds in the Bay area? Is this the best they can do? Is this the line Apple PR is trotting out this week?

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RE Bluish-Green (R97, G171, B162; #61aba2) = petrol

Fashion likes more fanciful names for colour nuances:

try searching in google.de pictures for "petrol hose"

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Sure but who cares?

Fashion is nonsense and the people who work in it are insufferable. It's a shame Mr. Travaglia has never (yet) had to deal with them -- then at least in fiction we'd see them get the sort of treatment they deserve.

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Pint

"precarious wire"

Looks like a wee feisty coaxial cable, thus (obviously) must be used for linking two RF circuits.

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Re: "precarious wire"

I think you're right. It's not a terribly high-res picture but you can just see that there is a large square solder pad at each end and a thinner white core continues a few mm further before revealing a fine wire onto a smaller solder pad. Looks like at one end of the wire arrives underneath the wifi chip and hence near one antenna and the other end is, funnily enough, near the other antenna.

I guess if that is the only RF signal they need to send around then it's not worth the effort of trying to make a transmission line on the PCB itself.

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Using a tablet as a camera...

I was in Boudhanath, Kathmandu, Nepal earlier this year, a rather impressive in the flesh devotional site and place of pilgrimage for many buddhists from all over that region of the world. One of the done things is to circambulate/walk round the stupa. Idiots with iPads in front of their faces doing just that don't half look silly, out of place, and get in the way

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Re: Using a tablet as a camera...

Sure, but getting fussed about them isn't all that Buddhist, is it? Have a few more turns round the ol' stupor, mate!

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