* Posts by Mage

3095 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Prince of Persia: Baggy trousers and curvy swords

Mage
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Re: Is it still playable?

Dosbox

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Microsoft's murder most foul: TechNet is dead

Mage
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Re: I'm taking my ball with me ! DOCX

My 2002 versions of Word and Excel use MS's free compatibility pack for DOCX, but I've been increasingly using Open Office and now Libre Office. I actually prefer the Charting interface on Libre Office.

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Mage
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Facepalm

It's been bad for a while

I had a variety of MS Select, MSDN and Technet subs between 1994 and 2003 when I cancelled.

I remember the last subs needed you to register and download keys for nearly everything instead of pre printed keys. The keys also got to be a damm pain in the neck to enter.

I've not done IT support since 2005 and I am SO GLAD.

Server 2003 and Office 2003 etc was the last stuff I got that way. Then they talked about doing away with the CDs and DVDs even though loads of IT companies had poor Internet Access. Also "the cloud" only makes sense if you have redundant fibre to the premises. Useless for most of the Real World outside HiTech Business campuses.

Another few years and MS will be as hapless as Polariod, Kodak, Yahoo and now HP. I don't think any of them can keep re-inventing themselves like the Victorian Era Hollerith Company, latterly known as IBM.

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Apple 'iWatch' trademark filing hints Cook's make-or-break moment looms

Mage
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Boffin

What's a watch?

Does anyone wear them any more other than jewellery?

Wristwatches made first for ladies (no waist coat for the pocket watch?), then popularised by WWI for men.

A phone is today's pocket watch and the ladies all have jeans or jacket pockets.

They might appeal to teenagers, but who can tell what teens will like?

Perhaps less stupid than Google's Googles.

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Sony Xperia Tablet Z: Our new top Android ten-incher

Mage
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Flame

Re: wireless charging?

Wireless charging is a gimmick. The charger still has a cable and mains plug and takes up a lot ot table space.

A charging dock makes more more sense, especially if the Gadget angle is adjustable.

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Mage
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Re: Yet another tallscreen Android tablet?

Not everyone only watches video.

Besides only TV and Budget Cinema (close at 1.85:1) is 16:9. Get used to black.

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What's the difference between GEEKS and NERDS?

Mage
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Re: I hate pizza

I love Bread, Cheese, Bacon, Tomato, peppers, salami. But somehow Pizza spoils them :) There are some decent pizza though.

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Mage
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Boffin

Distinction

Beware Geeks bringing gifts*.

But don't worry about Nerds.

(*Remember the "free" USB Mouse exploit?)

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Yahoo! announces last hurrah of ancient AltaVista search

Mage
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Well. eventually Yahoo will close.

What is their strategy and where is their vision?

Why did they close Geocities?

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Radio hams tell Ofcom: Put that Wi-Fi mob back in their place

Mage
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Devil

Ofcom

Not about managing spectrum or best use of it but purely about making money for Treasury and supporting Mobile operators rather than consumers or anyone else because they have the most money to spend.

A shame.

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Mint 15 freshens Ubuntu's bad bits

Mage
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I may try this

Just spent 4 days faffing with Debian 7 ...

The Desktop "Network manager" is broken if you want to configure static IP wired ethernet.

The Samba configuration is still pants, the Nautilus create SMB share worked in ver 6, not in this. Debian v6 the password sync worked, on 7 inexplicably only one account worked, the others needed the SMB password separately created with command line tool. With SWAT the working shares don't appear listed and it claims SMBD isn't running!

Debian 7 wouldn't read a LVM configured disk, so had to boot a drive with Debian 6, copy disk to a disk and then reboot Debian 7.

Firefox? Debian uses the alterego Iceweasel.

It's the insistance on Bluetooth and Evolution "built-in" to gnome 3 that baffles me.

I look forward to trying Mint + cinnamon.

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Stock dips as fanbois complain of dodgy Wi-Fi on MacBook Air

Mage
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Re: I have always found "BigCorp's" paranoia when dealing with customer complaints very.......

Rolls Royce or a Fiat X19?

More attention to Form than Function.

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The future of cinema and TV: It’s game over for the hi-res hype

Mage
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Boffin

Mains

Very early in late 1940s or in 1950s the lock to mains was abandoned. But Studio lighting was one of the original issues. Some early TVs then had a moving hum bar.

It wasn't to use the 50Hz or 60Hz directly but to make the hum bar stationary.

The explanation about interlace and dynamic movement is pretty good, but there was investigation and comparison of progressive vs interlaced in the 1930s. Interlaced 25fps 50Hz is better than 25fps progressive especially if there is no simple large item moving quickly the eye can track. If the eye can't track, then our dynamic resolution is poor.

So interlace did give some improvement. But there is no doubt that 1366 x 768 (already a native panel resolution on HD Ready TVs) with 75 fps progressive would be better than UHD at lower rates and probably better than 1920 x 1080 progressive. There is little point to higher resolution as onboard upscaling can allow an image the size of the wall.

Also if the source is twice resolution and frame rate (150fps) and downsampled/antialiased) to 1366 x 768 75fps progressive the quality is better.

As for so called 3D (stereoscopic)? Pointless.

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Making the case for upgrading from Server 2003

Mage
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Devil

Re: It's true though...

Yes, I upgraded from Windows 2000 to Linux. It's been a pain though, even though the Win2K box had Apache & IIS as well as MS SQL and MySQL. The "common" LAMP CMS did work on the "WAMP" though I may add one 2003 Server next month (and upgrade it to something Linux flavoured before 2015), or not if the SAMBA shares stay stable.

Fortunately I don't have to run Exchange or Sharepoint.

But what to replace the XP with?

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Apple said to dump Samsung as chip-baking partner – again

Mage
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Samsung magic sauce

Years ago the Samsung 6400 was the magic sauce. 3 chips (ARM SoC, Flash & RAM) layered in one approx 2mm package. Less PCB tracks and less PCB area.

I guess by now someone else can put the Apple variant Arm SoC in that package?

It's not impossible TSMC make the chip and Samsung STILL assemble it with the other two in the package. BTW the original iPhone used the 6400

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Cloud company avoids the cloud

Mage
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Someone somewhere

needs real computers.

If you are running LAMP, and each user has web applications + data base, which is better performance?

1 copy of SQL & Apache and Linux with N user accounts

OR

N x VMs, each with a copy of Linux, Apache and SQL?

*nix OS family was multiuser from the beginning

Only if you have users installing native applications is the overhead of VM needed.

For 99.99% of ordinary hosting the "VM" is a waste of money and performance.

VMs and Cloudy Computing has it's niche. But it's stupid for most things.

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Three's Irish network goes titsup

Mage
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FAIL

Re: Negative, negative...

They will feed O2 gear with their cheap Virgin Media fibre and ditch the multiple redundant O2 backhaul.

Oh and make EVERYONE in O2 Ireland redundant.

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Mage
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Redundancy?

Blaming Virgin Media?

What sensible "Enterprise" size operation feeds their network without redundancy? Has someone dug a trench in Newry (Virgin Media are not in the Republic, nor are a major backhaul operator).

Once more Three demonstrate that all they are good at is selling Internet dongle contracts & PAYG and mis-labelling it broadband. It would have been better if O2 had bought Three.

An Post & Tesco use O2 infrastructure.

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Google staffing boss: Our old hiring procedures were 'worthless'

Mage
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Devil

like to be a one trick pony like Google

Well the money is good.

But there is more to life than money.

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Mage
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Holmes

Re: World's cleverest company states the obvious

Actually Google is almost a one trick pony. They do a huge amount of stupid stuff.

They are good at selling advertising and doing search. Android is pretty much a "bought in" development based on Linux and Java.

Most of the really smart companies are small ones you never heard of.

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Apple: If you find us guilty in ebook price-fix trial, EVERYONE suffers

Mage
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Pint

I think the Apple team may be taking advice from Steve Bong,

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PC makers REALLY need Windows 8.1 to walk on water - but guess what?

Mage
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Devil

since 2007

Or even about 2002.

Huge massive difference between my 2000 laptop and the 2002 model. I'm still using the 2002 Model. 1600 x 1200 screen, 1.8GHz CPU. Internal Wifi, HDD, RAM upgraded though.

The 2000 Laptop (450 MHz PIII mobile and 1400 x 1050 screen) made the earlier one from 1998 look like junk.

I have a mix of Office XP and Office 2003 applications. And Libre Office. My replacement for XP will not be an MS OS, unless there is a miracle.

Before 2002 to 2006 you replaced perfectly working machines regularly and updated OS. (WFWG 3.11 far better Win 3.0, XP "better" than NT4.0, Win98SE better than any of the 3 Win95).

What compelling reason is there for Vista, Win7 or Win8 if you have a working computer with XP, OS X or Linux?

Newer MS OSes and post 2003 MS Office? See Icon

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Telecoms band wants to drag White Space into the real world

Mage
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Greed

See how any of the Mobile operators would like White Space Operations on their licensed spectrum by someone else.

It's been hyped so much that the Bean Counters and PHBs at these companies believe in it. It causes interference as their own RF engineers know.

It's an American inspired myth. Clue in the name.

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Google launches broadband balloons, radio astronomy frets

Mage
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Coat

Re: More Google Irresponsible Stupidity.

It's 60km range and also totally unreliable as balloons drift quickly. All of the disadvantages of Balloons and LEO satellites with none of the advantages. A cheap gimmick on the wrong band. There are tethered balloon designs, but that has problems. So Astra has a LEO satellite project using a swarm. There is some scepticism about the SES-Astra project but it's more viable than this nonsense and won't interfere with anyone.

This is either designed by idiots for "cool" or by RF engineers goaded by bosses with big pointy sticks. It's a totally stupid irresponsible band to use on balloons for the General Public.

If a company is going to to something stupid like this they should use a suitable band.

Mines the one with ITU band plans and RF Planning in the pocket.

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Mage
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FAIL

More Google Irresponsible Stupidity.

This doesn't even work. The higher the "mast" the more coverage, then the more users and slower the speed.

It's pointless Google PR to make them look like a Cool Tech company. They are an Advertising company.

Range is very high with such a high platform. (For more capacity on Mobile you use LOWER masts and less power). So what ever band it uses it dramatically reduces performance/capacity as the Balloon passes within range. It's irresponsible. As is Google's so called "White Space".

Such Balloons are technically a HAP (High Altitude Platform). The recommended bands are 200GHz and/or 400GHz I think as only that high a frequency is there enough capacity for such range/coverage. It's ridiculous to use ISM for such a platform.

However they will be short lived as the Helium will leak out.

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Young blokes blinded by video-game addiction: THE FACTS

Mage
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Re: Little Johnny is playing XBOX One alone in his room....

Shades of the Last Starfighter :-)

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Interwebs taunt Sir Jony over Apple eye candy makeover

Mage
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FAIL

Re: Ives? don't have any world players

Because of the different Venture capital model. Sheer size of market, better Venture Capital etc means a dozen or so US companies are very dominant. For every one of those there are thousands of failures.

Dominance of "Bean Counters" and the London "financial" trading has killed off many promising UK companies. Only Financial management, leveraged buyouts (= asset stripping) and Defence /Aerospace is valued in UK. Inmos could have beaten Intel but we threw it away. Clive Sinclair produced mostly rubbish, but more innovative than Ives, Even Amstrad / Alan Sugar couldn't believe how badly Timex produced gear for Sinclair when he bought them. When the Japanese came to set up TV plants in Wales etc they couldn't use UK parts. Quality too poor. Not a design issue but Bean Counters killing the companies.

I know loads of Designers, Engineers (SW & HW) that have done more good innovation and development in a few years than J.I. has in his whole career, he got a lucky break and gave Jobs what he was looking for.

How many Apple, Microsoft, Google etc are there anyway?

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Mage
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Ives?

A genius?

He admitted he ripped it all of Dieter Rams' Braun stuff. What exactly has he invented that someone else less famous and with poorer marketing didn't do first?

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Ex-Palm CEO Rubinstein wishes HP sale never happened

Mage
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Thumb Up

Re: HP

Also when they merged (= Took over) Compaq many of the best products of both companies killed in the "rationalisation". The worst handheld, Workstations & Servers rather than best kept. But Compaq bought DEC surely, not HP and really only for the service channels, so all the DEC HW & SW was doomed anyway?

A far cry from the days when they made world leading Test gear and Semiconductors.

Their Laser printers are now inferior to Brother. The Inkjets only exist to sell ink.

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Want a fast, private Wi-Fi channel? Fine, go fight the regulators

Mage
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Flame

"a Channel 14 network could achieve three times the range and much higher speeds than open-access channels"

This is obviously nonsense. You might as well claim an FM Radio station on 103 MHz has three times the range and quality of one on 100MHz.

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'THINNEST EVER' spinning terabyte beauty slips out of WD fabs

Mage
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Re: I can't believe people consider this debatable.

Powers of Two are applicable to RAM and ROM as addressing and storage increments are binary.

Drive storage, communications Bit Rates, Frequencies etc are all correctly powers of 10.

I can't believe that after over 40 years some people are STILL trying to argue that the "short hand" & misleading method of counting in 1024 increments (because a 1K RAM was 10 address bits and thus really 1024) is correct for anything else when it was only ever a convenience for chips and address buses.

I don't need to use Mebi etc. If it's chip related I know 1024s apply. But MHz, GHz, M bps, M symbols/s, disk storage, Kilometres etc are all powers of TEN not powers of 2.

Anyway I look forward to a future new laptop with 2 of these mirrored.

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

Mage
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Re: Bored with your nonsense now!

Fewer towers (masts) also means poorer capacity.

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Mage
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will have to take care of themselves

That's criminal irresponsibility in Spectrum Planning.

Mobile doesn't actually need the 800MHz, It won't be broadband and all it does is save a few rural masts (more masts = better data rates) reducing data speed compared with the alternative solutions.

This is fuelled by

Government greed on Licence fees

Tech companies

Desire of operators to cut costs rather than improve service capacity

It brings nothing to the consumer and impoverishes DTT, benefits Pay TV on Cable and Satellite.

Only DTT works anywhere. Satellite & Cable are inflexible and Cable is Pay TV only.

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ZTE in 4G boost after 'world-first' VoTD-LTE call

Mage
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Boffin

Not simple. Conclusions wrong

TDD can be LESS efficient. It just can work (more slowly) in less spectrum. Also FDD can be cheaper to implement.

Uplink needs lower symbol rate as client power is more limited than Base Station. Thus even at a 8:1 ratio of download vs upload (a reasonable factor) the uplink needs about the same spectrum.

This means if you use a single unpaired channel your receiver is potentially de-sensed by other nearby modems and the available download speed on average less than 1/2 the FDD paired spectrum. You need guard time between the half duplex Transmit and Receive, reducing efficiency.

TDD will always have higher latency too.

FDD is the more efficient cheaper solution. TDD is only of value to use up odd chunks of spectrum. WiMax had it as it was Intel's concept of outdoor WiFi, hence they stuck it in the LTE spec later to satisfy the small number of operators that would want it.

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Boffins develop 'practically free' sulphur-powered batteries

Mage
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Re: Hot?

Solid in contrast to a liquid electrolyte.

Is ripe Brie solid?

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Mage
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Hot?

It doesn't have to run at 190C or something inconvenient?

The original sulphur batteries needed an auxiliary battery to melt them to start operation.

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Steelie Neelie: Crack down on wicked ISPs so we can Skype

Mage
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Viviane Reding,

Yes +1 on that too

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Mage
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Big Brother

There are idiots in Europe

But Kroes isn't one one of them. Her proposals are pretty consistent in trying to protect the consumer.

If Outfits like Comreg and Ofcom were not simply revenue raising arms of Treasury and mostly supportive of the Status Quo of BT, Sky, Eircom and the Mobile operators and did real protection of Spectrum and Consumer then there would be no need.

Mobile (none is Broadband) and Fixed Broadband is dishonestly marketed by almost all sellers and some don't get it that an ISP just provides a connection.

Of course a lease line or Data Centre connection isn't the same as a Domestic cable connection. The ISPs should be honest about availability, Contention, typical and minimum speeds at peak and off peak times. They should not Block or throttle any Public Internet Traffic.

They are entitled to sell EXTRA services (their own VOIP, Switched Video, Broadcast Video, Hosting, IPTV etc) but any QOS on that should only affect the person subscribing and be made clear before sign-up (i.e. your connection is up to 12Mbps with priority for your IPTV subscription, this is subtracted from your 50Mbps down and 2Mbps up 20:1 contended package with typical minimum speeds of 15Mbps at peak times and 45Mbps at off peak, you might only see 50Mbps at 3AM in the morning if not watching IPTV)

The ASA and ASAI are also complicit in the lies peddled to Consumers. Lets to start with make it illegal to call Mobile Internet, Mobile Broadband.

Broadband: Minimum of 512K (or 2M depending on Jurisdiction) and "always on" (perhaps brief reconnection on DSL once a day). Mobile 21Mbps total sector speed within 250m of mast, Minimum is 120k or no connection. It can refuse to connect or drop connections with as few as 10 users. With 5 users simultaneously streaming per user speed can be under 1Mbps.

Broadband, low latency, low packet loss to ISP router: Mobile is extremely variable up to 1000ms, can be 50% packet loss to ISP router!

Mobile is often Proxied to save Public IPs and for easier control. Broadband you have no proxy and can run low bandwidth personal services without annoying ISP (i.e. a Public Web Server is usually not allowed or sensible), Mobile typically you can't run ANY services, not even remotely turning the oven on.

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Landfill Android devices set to get 4G, courtesy of Qualcomm

Mage
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Also patents

This is why Qualcomm bought Flarion and killed of its early Flash-OFDMA based 4G markets about 5 or 6 years ago. They only wanted the patents and technology.

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Mars Express' 10th birthday celebrated with Martian atlas

Mage
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Surely

The Bradbury Academy of Sciences.

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Ecuador: Let's talk about not having Julian Assange on our sofa

Mage
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Reality

The Swedish won't hand JA over to the US. But given suitable incentives the Ecuadorians might.

If the US had wanted him Extradited, the UK would have been far more likely to consider it. I think the US are idiots, Ecuador has only done it to annoy US and UK and JA is an egotist.

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How Microsoft shattered Gnome's unity with Windows 95

Mage
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Flame

This is nonsense

There is actually minor difference between Win 3.x and Win9.x desktop.

The actual windows / applications and icons/menus on both are the same.

So what is the differences?

The desktop from Win9.x onwards is one giant global Program Manager group that can't be resized or minimised. You can create folder icons on win9.x desktop that are like Program manager groups so your main desktop isn't too cluttered.

The only real difference is the taskbar with start button. Which can easily be added as an application on a desktop Icon. Of course an Explorer window is completely different to File Manager, but that is really just a different File managing/Browsing tool integrated to the Desktop.

You can operate Win 3.1 desktop very like Win9.x except for Start Button/Task bar, is can easily be added. Nothing revolutionary or patentable.

Win 2.x Win 3.1, Gem, Llsa, Mac and others simply copied the Xerox project and each other.

MS or Apple don't deserve a single desktop patent, nor should anything like that be Patentable, only copyright protected if original.

Part of the fragmentary and Disparate nature of various UNIX/GNU/Linux desktops is due to underlying architecture of X-Windows being more flexible allowing any kind of Window Manager. The MS Windows API is quite different.

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Groundbreaking Camino browser digs grave, jumps in

Mage
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Unhappy

many More Browsers?

If you discount Spyware with Lipstick and simple variations they now have a choice of two rather than one before Chimera. PC Users since Opera is abandoning it's own engine have a choice of three if we apply the same criteria. There appears to be a big selection on Linux, but is there really any more choice of really viable/actually different engines than on OS X?

So another choice bites the dust.

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Google nuke thyself: Mountain View's H.264 righteous flame-out

Mage
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Boffin

Broadcast & H.264

All Digital Broadcast is MPEG2 and much HD is MPEG4. Some countries use only MPEG4 even for SD. TVs, PVRs, Setboxes can't use SW codecs economically. They use dedicated HW. Hence TVs, Setboxes etc with MPEG2 only can't upgrade via Firmware to MPEG4 and boxes & TVs that do MPEG4 & MPEG2 and HD can't have VP8 added by Firmware.

BD players use HW based codecs too, MPEG2 (for DVDs) and MPEG4

The "Appliance", tablet, phone and gadget markets dwarf PC/Laptops. ARM based gadgets use SoC HW in the ARM CPU for Codec and Graphics. No SW/Firmware codecs. So VP8 was dooomed from the start due to only being used for Internet and lack of built in HW support.

2K HD Broadcast will use H.265

This was not decided by the "Internet" or MPEG LA, but Gadget, Chipmakers and Broadcasters.

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Microsoft's Windows 8.1 secrets REVEALED ... sort of

Mage
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Re: Sounds more like 8.01

Didn't Windows 2.0 have resizeable apps?

It's a bikini on a hippo

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Developer codes VNC-over-GIF tool

Mage
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Holmes

Umm..

What's the advantage over the ancient already MJPEG (NOT MPEG) format?

I suppose 256 colours + palette is acceptable instead of full colour and no palette.

Of course MJPEG was designed for files not streaming, but unlike GIF was envisaged to be used for video.

This is unlikely to work with any GIF viewer as they expect a file and can't read a stream. Also there is a hardly used animated version of PNG, The APNG format supports 24 bit and transparency as well as 256 colour palettes. Surely a better starting point if you don't like MJPEG (i.e. licence conditions or content non-photographic)?

An MPEG-TS can in theory be used for streaming M-APNG or M-GIF variant, MJPEG etc and not just MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4 etc as it's just a multiplex envelope and has advantage it can do sound, non-image data (IP Broadcast or non-IP, even Unicast using DOCSIS) etc all in same stream.

At least he admits he can't see the point of it!

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World's richest hobo (Apple) has worked 'tax-free' in Ireland since '80s

Mage
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Devil

Re: Easy answer then

I think currently the EU's finest are trying to figure if there is merely Tax Avoidance (can be immoral and not what intended but not actually illegal) or Tax Evasion (Illegal) or both and if both can be reduced.

But EU and USA need to co-ordinate and pressure Singapore, Caymans, Bahamas, Switzerland etc to have the same rules.

Stage one: Make everyone report earnings in Each country. Even Tesco when reporting UK results refuse to divulge Irish figures, lumping them into the UK figures! Sky Might be breaking VAT rules on Irish subscriptions.

I'll be surprised if some (many? all?) Large Multinationals are not technically doing Tax Evasion as well as Tax Avoidance.

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Brit spooks bugged Edward VIII's phones, records reveal

Mage
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Winston and Stalin, and Molotov

I guess Stalin didn't let Molotov mix the cocktails.

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Happy 23rd birthday, Windows 3.0

Mage
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Alert

Re: This was 1990, when most people at home

Most people at home didn't have a computer at all.

DOS, CP/M, DRDOS and loads of types of incompatible dedicated Terminals all being used in small offices. Almost zero use of Windows 2.0, Windows 286 and Windows 368. Very very few Mac. Far too expensive for ordinary small offices.

In 1989, Apple disposed of approximately 2,700 unsold Lisas in a guarded landfill. Never saw one.

Early Mac used ROM based OS and one 3.5" floppy. I did see some of these.

If you had serious money it was the era of the Mac IIcx, I never ever saw one of these despite working in with computers from 1979 and IT training & Support from 1990.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macintosh_IIcx

IBM OS/2 + MS LAN Manager, MS OS/2 (released 1989), DR-Multidos, Xenix, Cromix, Novell etc all being used for small office servers.

Win 3.0 was very short lived really. Many upgraded quickly to 3.1, then 3.11 which were the real OS/2 killers. OS/2 Warp was too late.

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Mage
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Devil

Was it an OS?

Not exactly, but more than a Window Manager. Win 3.1 was a big jump, Win 3,0 was rubbish compared to Win3.1.

The Real and Standard modes very much just a GUI shell to launch DOS Programs. Win 3.0 Enhance Mode a not quite OS, but Win 9x and Win ME not quite OSes either.

WFWG3.11 properly set up with Win32s, 32 bit TCP/IP, good Graphics driver and 32 bit Disk Driver was better than Win95a and as much an OS as Win95, Win98, WinME, which is to say a horrid mish-mash and not a proper OS like NT 3.1, NT3.5, NT3.51 and NT4.0 (You could run Explorer Shell Preview on NT3.51 and Run Program Manager & File Manager on NT 4.0 instead of Explorer Shell).

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