* Posts by Michael B.

83 posts • joined 6 Nov 2007

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Amazon’s CHRISTMAS QUEUEING bonanza!

Michael B.

Post Office != Royal Mail

The two entities are separate as far as I can see. The Royal Mail delivery service was the bit that was privatised but the Post Office side still remains in government ownership. So in fact this is bad news for the Private company Royal Mail but good news for the government owned Post Office network and franchised sub-post masters.

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Nokia's N1 fondleslab's HIDDEN BRILLIANCE: The 'Z Launcher'

Michael B.

Re: owner of 2 bricks, looking for windows...

Well well it looks like your dream has come true, somebody has taken notice of the non-Windows Nokia Phones and that somebody is.... Opera. Opera will be running the app store on non-Windows Nokia phones. See below for details:

http://www.windowscentral.com/nokia-store-be-replaced-opera-nokia-x-mobile-devices?utm_source=wpc&utm_medium=twitter

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Michael B.

Re: owner of 2 bricks, looking for windows...

Lets get this straight you are moaning that Nokia/Microsoft/Accenture/Whoever are closing the Symbian app store? A platform that hasn't been actively developed in any shape or form for nearly 3 years.

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Farewell Nokia: First ever 'Microsoft Lumia' set for Tuesday reveal

Michael B.

Re: It's really impacted me, this Nokia to MS transition...

More than likely the BBC just shut it off. They have had quite a form on that lately.

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BBC clamps down on ILLICIT iPlayer watchers

Michael B.

Well get_iplayer has already worked around it

Just updated get_iplayer and it has already worked around the RSS feeds by scraping the webpages. In the process I think it also shows more programmes than the old RSS feeds did.

So in the process of trying to kill off get_iplayer and XBMC they have just screwed over the Smart TV users and nobody else.

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Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch

Michael B.

This patch was for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008R2 so it wouldn't have been this that caused it.

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Nokia Lumia 735: Ignore the selfie hype, it's a grown-up phone

Michael B.

Yup. You just connect with a cable and the phone apears as a new device. If your phone has internal and external storage it appears as two seperate folder and within that there are the standard folders:

Documents

Downloads

Music

Pictures

Videos

(Ringtones on the internal drive)

and any other folders that you create

On Windows you just drag and drop your files into the folder of your choice. I think there is a way to sync photos and music but I've never bothered dragging and dropping is the sync method of choice for me.

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iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!

Michael B.

Blimey Windows Phone 8.1 supports WebGl as well

so make it 3 billion and 1 devices. Though not all the samples on the web seem to run so there must be something missing from the implementation as some sophisticated samples run great whereas some simple samples don't.

Looks like I will be digging out my 3D geometry and having a bit of a play this weekend.

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'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux

Michael B.

New Feature or a tidy up and bundling of one of their own utilities?

As a successor to the XP Power Tools's Virtual Desktop Mark Russinovich et al created Desktops around 6 years ago.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/sysinternals/cc817881

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Alibaba swings a large one with STONKING IPO legal bills

Michael B.

Re: I'm not sure if I can trust their numbers...

The way I read it: As the company was founded in 1999 if it lasts at least 102 years then the company will have been active in the 20th, 21st and 22nd centuries. Which in itself is a bizarre statement to make.

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Windows 7 settles as Windows XP use finally starts to slip … a bit

Michael B.

Why is Win 8 and Win 8.1 seperated?

It seems bizarre that you would separate those two versions without separating the others into Service Packs which is essentially what Win8.1 is.

If you combine them then under StatCounter's stats Win8 usage > WinXP

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Microsoft and HTC are M8s again: New One mobe sports WinPhone

Michael B.

Re: How much??

Taking a look at the buy now page the $99 must refer to the phone + monthly contract price. The full price is given as $599.99 so it's not a super bargain but just business as usual.

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Traffic light vulns leave doors wide open to Italian Job-style hacks

Michael B.

Hack away you can't do worse than Bristol City Council

Bristol City council can beat any hacker any day at traffic light induced chaos. If there is a straight stretch of road they'll throw up a set of traffic lights with timings setup without consideration for any lights up or down the road to cause the maximum disruption.

One journey a little while ago of around 2 -3 miles I passed through 24 sets of traffic lights and stopped at 22 of them. I guess BCC's bid for the Green Capital of Europe was based around slowing the traffic down to such an extent that moss started to grow on the cars.

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In three hours, Microsoft gave the Windows-verse everything it needed

Michael B.

Re: Multi-threaded, eh? Gosh, how modern.

They demoed a couple of different routes of taking ancient applications and porting them to modern systems. The one above used DAL of an ancient C++ app and porting it to Windows 8.

Another technology on the 2nd day involved automatically porting a VB 6 application to WinForms and then as a final step to an ASP.Net website.

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Michael B.

Re: I hate to bang on about this AGAIN

That's why the universal app projects in Visual Studio allow you to share as much or as little common code as necessary. If you do have something that works fine on WinPhone then you can go ahead and push it, otherwise you can tune controls or whole pages to look the best on the different platforms.

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Live in the middle of nowhere? CONGRATS. Some of you can pay EE for 4G

Michael B.

Re: Top Tip

They are sorting it out it's called LTE. It's more efficient than 3G on better frequencies.

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GPs slam NHS England for poor publicity of data grab plan

Michael B.

What leaflet?

I'm fairly sure we didn't receive one. I've just hunted down the leaflet's pdf and I don't recognise anything like that coming through the door. We don't get that much post, junk or otherwise, so anything that goes through the door gets at least a cursory look.

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Windows 8 fans out-enthuse Apple fanbois

Michael B.

Re: Sigh....

The only thing I can think of is that is a play on the version number of Windows, 8.1 -> 81

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iOS 7 SPANKS Samsung's Android in user-experience rating

Michael B.

Re: Can you spell horseshit?

The author of the report claimed only 12 are possible on the home screen ignoring the scrolling and also the fact that all of the tiles could have been resized to give you 24 tiles per page if you like that sort of density. ( I don't. )

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Nokia Lumia 1020: It's an imaging BEAST... and it makes calls too

Michael B.

Skydrive Upload

Skydrive upload is optional on Windows Phones. There are 3 modes that can be selected, no upload, low resolution upload for sharing or a full resolution copy on Skydrive.

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Apple iOS 7 remote wipe: Can it defeat the evil scrumper scourge?

Michael B.

You mean Apple didn't have this feature already.

Even Microsoft managed to get it implemented in 2010 for Windows Phone. ( Around the same time as Android got it.)

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Two more counties to get gov-funded bumpkin broadband from... guess?

Michael B.

Re: Re-nationalise BT...

You are mistaken the real change was the introduction of the NTE5 wall socket and the introduction of digital exchanges. The development and implementation of both started under the nationalised BT.

BT were forced to offer local loop unbundling because an EU directive and they were subsequently forced to create Openreach to ensure that they did actually offer equal access to the local network.

They were also pretty slow in getting ADSL services out to the masses. ( I remember them still pimping Home Highway (ISDN) hard even when ADSL services were available and even then their initial ADSL speeds were pretty miserly.)

I really don't buy this private BT is better as it seems that they are frequently forced to do the right thing by government time and time again.

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Win XP alive and kicking despite 2014 kill switch (Don't ask about Win 8)

Michael B.

Interesting comparison to Steam Survey for July 2013

Windows 7 64 bit 52.39%

Windows 8 64 bit 13.34%

Windows 7 12.52%

Windows XP 32 bit 7.12%

Windows Vista 64 bit 5.31%

Windows Vista 32 bit 2.46%

So even amongst users of Steam XP is still holding out.

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Who's who: 12th Doctor has been chosen, will meet you on Sunday night

Michael B.

Re: Seems a bit too often

I did think that as well, but a quick look at wikipedia, and the years that they were in command of the TARDIS, shows that apart from Eccleston and McGann it's about normal.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctor_Who#Changes_of_appearance

Ignoring the first two doctors ( they were really knocking them out then) and taking into account that the modern episodes are double the length of the old ones then it's almost the same amount of screen time for the old Doctors as the new ones.

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Australia threatens Adobe, Apple, with geo-blocking ban

Michael B.

Re: Grey importing??

For the iPlayer it's a simple matter of economics at the BBC. For almost every programme made there will be copyright licensing required, this is the case from buying in films down to stock photography. The BBC could negotiate a world wide license but the licensee would naturally charge a lot more. ( In the case of films or whole programmes that licensee would probably figure in that fact that they can't sell it on to other countries if the BBC is showing that programme to the entire world.) To keep costs significantly down they can accept a reasonable restriction of only making the programme/copyrighted material available to licensee fee payers in the UK only. Hence Geo-restriction.

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Apple: iOS7 dayglo Barbie makeover is UNFINISHED - report

Michael B.

Re: Voicemail Button

You can use alternative Voicemail providers, Hullomail is one that comes to mind, that give you additional options such as emailing an mp3 of the voicemail to you.

In these cases you need to change the voicemail number to use their services.

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The fearful price of 4G data coverage: NO TELLY for 90,000 Brits

Michael B.

Re: Bored with your nonsense now!

Its bandwidth and Signal to Noise Ratio that determines the maximum bit rate. A 5Mhz channel at 1800Mhz and 800Mhz with the same S/N ratio will carry data at the same rate. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shannon%E2%80%93Hartley_theorem#Examples for the Maths

Now the big advantage of these lower frequency transmitters is that they propagate further that then higher frequencies and as such fewer towers will be required to to cover a given area.

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Apple declares WAR on Spotify: iRadio bags streaming rights

Michael B.

Radio Rates

Well here is an example of the royalty rates for Radio play in the UK http://www.jazzservices.org.uk/index.php/jazz-business-copyright/performance-royalties

One play of the song could easily reach a multiple of million people on Radios 1 and 2 so 100 quid for a million plays is actually over charging a little if you compare it to radio rates. Though they probably factor in an on-demand premium to charge Spotify more.

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Review: Nokia Lumia 520

Michael B.

The 520 appears to have a GPS chip but no compass so it can tell you where you are but not which direction you are looking in. From a practical standpoint this would stop virtual reality apps such as City Lens from working fully but Nokia Drive should be fine.

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The gloves are on: Nokia emits super-sensitive £99 Windows Phone

Michael B.

Re: Perfect phone

I can't answer about the 520 ( I have an 920) , but regarding the iPlayer it's "coming soon" http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/internet/posts/Microsoft_mobile

but seeing the bad job the BBC have done at bringing the iPlayer to Android ( implementation and timescales ) as opposed to the slick IOS offerings I wouldn't hold my breath at it a. coming soon and b. being up to much more than just a streaming service.

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Whatever happened to telepresence? From $2.5m deals to free iPad apps

Michael B.

Get the sound right first

On most of the conference calls I've been involved in sound has been the biggest problem rather than the picture. Instead of shelling out for expensive screens if only they could have invested in a bunch of lavalier mics with radio transmitters the picture really wouldn't have mattered that much.

Most of the conference calls I make I do from home and use my small studio with a cheap mixer, a compressor/gate and a modest microphone I am always the clearest participant by far.

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Lenovo: Windows 8 is so good, everyone wants Windows 7

Michael B.

Re: More proof...

I've seen this so many times before and this is no exception. From businesses reluctant to move from Windows NT 4 to Windows 2000, from 2000 to XP, from XP to anything else. It's really just the continuation of a process that I have observed for more than a decade and a half and it actually bears no reflection on the quality of the OS.

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BBC World Service in a jam as China blocks broadcasts

Michael B.

Re: Why is Peter Horrocks silent about attempts to silence news from Iran?

In the UK Press TV was taken off air for a license violation which they could have resolved pretty easily and with no fuss, but I guess fuss is exactly what they wanted.

Frankly OFCOM treated Press TV with more restraint for its license violations than any other channel I've seen.

More Info on this can be found here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2012/jan/20/iran-press-tv-loses-uk-licence

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Tesla vs Media AGAIN as Model S craps out on journo - on the highway

Michael B.

I just listened back to the original "review" and for Top Gear it is actually pretty complimentary. The controversial bit has a voiceover saying "Although Tesla say that it will do 200 miles, we worked out that on our track it would only do 55 miles." over the crew pushing the car. Now the voiceover never says that it did run out of charge just that if they did run out of charge it would do so after 55 miles.

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What a Liberty: Virgin Media in buyout talks with telecoms giant

Michael B.

Re: Yeah, terrible service ...

I'm in deepest South Bristol, and also have the Samknows monitoring box, and I can tell you from the Stats page that 7pm to 8pm is, on average, one of the fastest times at around 90 Mbps on a 100Mbps line. Even the consolidated stats over a year show the same pattern of higher speeds during the evening.

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Microsoft Office 2013 heads for the cloud but fails to soar

Michael B.
Thumb Up

One Feature that made this upgrade worthwhile

...and that was the ability to open, edit and save* PDF documents from within Word. That is such a life saver you wouldn't believe.

Elsewhere in Word there are lots of other solid improvements from the Navigation side panel to the improved properties sidepane and even the ability to directly insert a screenshot of another Program's Window.

All in all, for me, a solid but worthwhile upgrade

*I am aware that previous versions could save as PDFs

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ARM cranks up cache and memory designs for servers

Michael B.

Re: " X86 which has a much larger software library"

Errr Supercomputers where it seems that over 3/4 of the top 500 are x86 based with over 90% of the top 500 use Linux.

From here: http://i.top500.org/stats

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Microsoft announces Office 2013, Office 365 pricing

Michael B.

Re: An honest question

Edit PDFs as though they were native word documents. ( Actually I don't know if that feature is in LibreOffice I was just impressed by that in the preview version of Office 2013.)

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Michael B.

Re: Microsoft seeks money

An Office 365 subscription comes with the full blown desktop versions as well as the online editions so you can run your macros and templates if that is what you want.

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Archos 101 XS 10.1in Android tablet review

Michael B.

Re: Good but a touch too expensive

Archos have been pretty decent in the past offering an SDE (Special Developer Edition) firmware which unlocks the device and allows you to put Linux on it.

http://www.archos.com/support/support_tech/updates_dev.html?country=us&lang=en

Granted it probably isn't your preferred version of Linux but it is a start nontheless.

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Windows Phone 8: What Nokia and Microsoft MUST do

Michael B.

Physical buttons rule!

I have the 710 which has physical buttons instead of the capacitive strip and they are almost impossible to hit accidentally.

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T-Mobile puts 'Full Monty' tariff on diet

Michael B.

Re: Tethering - one way to detect

Each tcp and udp packet that is sent out has a time to live field which is decremented every time it is forwarded on by a router. As a result the device that is tethered will have its ttl field decremented by one by the phone as it passes through the phone's router. Operating systems usually have a stable default ttl and as such once the packets hit the mobile network's routers there will be a mix of ttls either x and x-1 or x and y-1 from the phone's own packets and the device(s) tethered to it.

That's just one way to detect tethering from a network perspective.

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Microsoft silently kills silent, automatic Skype install via Updates

Michael B.

Re: Not only that...

Youcam has nothing to do with Microsoft, it's a cyberlink product. It is probably part of the crapware on your machine or bundled up with a webcam driver update.

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SeeSaw shut down

Michael B.

Hasn't been true in a long time

The BBC were forced by the government in 1991 to start using independent production companies and in the communications act 2003 they were set a quote of 25% that they had to achieve. The upshot is that all those programmes that you have paid for are actually owned by somebody else.

Even those that are wholly produced by the BBC will have complicated contractual and copyright restrictions. Actors will want residuals. Music and image will be restricted in terms of rebroadcasting and might have to be re-cleared, at a substantial fee, if they were to put the output on a website for free.

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BBC One and bureaucracy spared in Auntie cuts

Michael B.

Straight from the Horse's mouth

In the twelve months to 30th June Sky had a revenue of £6,597million. No they could have spent a good chunk of that on programming but instead they only spent 2,188 million, Their marketing spend was almost half that at £1,179 million with the rest taking it up to a total spend of 5524 million.

So to answer your sarky comment, it was the Sky FY Press Release from 10/11 that gave me the figures. - http://corporate.sky.com/documents/pdf/latest_results/fy_press_release_1011

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Michael B.

“It should still be possible to run an outstanding broadcaster"

Well Sky can't manage to be a decent broadcaster on 6 billion so I think the Beeb does excellently on almost half the revenue.

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iTunes Match is iPiracy, claims loopy Oz industry troll

Michael B.
Facepalm

My first Idea too

When this was announced, with the fee, I realised that this would be a perfect way to get a high quality copy of your friend's library for one low yearly fee. Just borrow their music library and get iTunes match to trade you up to a lovely DRM free high bitrate AAC copy.

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Football goal-line tracking tech delayed

Michael B.

Probably a factor of ten or more out

The total of the average Premier league attendance figures are around 700 000 out of a total capacity of 770 000. This is just the Premier league turnstile figures and ignores any TV coverage or other league games.

Taking in all the leagues down the the Blue Square and you have 1.4 million people through the turnstile each normal week of the year.

Stats from - http://itv.stats.football365.com/dom/ENG/PR/attend.html

Much more than your 180 000 which is less than the combined average attendance of the top 3 attended teams in the Premier League.

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Google to Microsoft: You're stealing our search results!

Michael B.

Who was snooping on whom?

So lets get this straight Google was snooping on Bing's search results when they noticed that Bing was snooping on Google's search results.

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Microsoft 'Xbox TV' rumours: Over the Cable Guy's dead body

Michael B.

Microsoft is already experimenting with frontend and backend

Surely Microsoft Mediaroom as used on the BT Vision box could be the user interface, just ported to the XBox. Combine this with MSN Player in the UK as their playground for getting the backend intrastructure debugged (with a side benefit of proving to content providers that they can be trusted with their precious IP).

With just these two separate streams of developments it is clear that XBox TV channel could just be content deals away.

Now this is all predicated on Microsoft thinking ahead and not replicating development....which we all know that they would never ever do.

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