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* Posts by Mage

2729 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

This supercomputing board can be yours for $99. Here's how

Mage
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Re: It's all about timing

Actually the problem with Transputer was it needed a different way of programming and thinking. Traditional OS and programming and libraries and existing applications can't be sensibly run on such highly parallel systems.

So not about the timing. Transputer was only ever a niche product in a market that Intel with hugely more resources has struggled with. If the Transputer had been an Intel or US invention, animation Render Farms would be running Transputer based 1000s of cores per chip and 1000s of chips per rack today.

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Mage
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Re: What about memory bandwidth ?

Seriously multicore systems need a lot of memory per core. This is advantage of fine grained muliple core RISC etc vs 1 billion transistor Chipzilla coarse grained multiprocessing cores. You have space for RAM for each core on chip. With coarse grained cores using OS threads, you have a serious memory bottleneck beyond 4 cores. More than 8 off x86 cores is silly unless you have multiple external buses to multiple RAM.

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Mage
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Re: Intel & IBM & MS

I think some people that have never done parallel programming don't understand the differences between a language where the compiler or run time time takes care of co-routine / thread / process to core mapping and a language that only has libraries for the host OS (NT, LInux, Unix etc). Or don't understand the difference between OS based Multiprocessing and Language based. Or between multi-core and distributed system.

Intel's x86 multi-core are not hugely different to a Motherboard with 2 or 4 single Core CPU sockets. In both cases NT or Linux hard sees the difference. Most actual programs can't tell the difference at all and only run on one core. Beyond 4 cores the speed improvement is marginal for NT Windows or Linux.

Systems with 100s to 1000s of cores (ideally each with enough RAM to run instructions in parallel without a memory bottleneck) need a different way of thinking and programming to take advantage of them. While people have done clever stuff with patched custom Kernels and exotic C and C++ and Fortran compilers and clever libraries, that's a dead end for huge numbers of cores/cpus.

While all this is well known to those working in HPC, Parallel systems etc for 30 years, it seems not well known even to many programmers.

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Mage
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Re: Intel & IBM & MS

Occam was a good idea for programming stuff like list. As was Co-routines in Modula-2

Instead we have been stuck with the portable Assembler for porting UNIX, aka C

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Mage
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Alien

Intel & IBM & MS

This idea goes back to the 1970s. Early implementation in 1980s with Transputer.

The x86 PC, MSDOS, UNIX, Windows and Linux have held back parallel RISC SW development and mainstream adoption for 20 years.

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Motorola whacks laptop-like phone dock

Mage
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It was too expensive.

In reality by the time you have a case that size with and LCD and ports, it's not much more expense to put an ARM cpu in it.

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TalkTalk's YouView: Why no Wi-Fi?

Mage
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absence of WiFi connectivity

Because it's a horror story to support.

I worked in an ISP doing cable broadband. I argued that since unlike DSL people can't buy their own Router, the modem should JUST be a Modem and then people buy their own router with whatever flavour of WiFi they want.

You'll find very very few TVs or setboxes with WiFi. Especially ones sold by people that might have to support it for "free". Ethernet is far more reliable and needs little support.

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Inside the real-world Double-O section of Her Majesty's Secret Service

Mage
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Re: "a major espionage centre like Vienna"

or on a radio link ...

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Mage
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Black Helicopters

Ian's Brother was probably the "real" spy

Peter Fleming's books are less numerous and more intriguing for what they don't say.

News From Tartary

The Bond books are "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang"* for adults, escapism and not meant to be realistic at all.

(* Yes Ian Fleming was responsible. At least there wasn't a dreadful fake Cockney accent, I think it's possibly better than the Bond Books. I think Leslie Charteris then and Clive Cussler now are better authors of "Bond" type books. The success of the film franchise can't be denied. Sean Connery is my favourite Film Bond.).

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Microsoft spruces up crap apps in early Win8 update

Mage
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Bing?

But how much will go in the till drawer when it opens?

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Drinking too much coffee can MAKE YOU BLIND

Mage
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Re: Subtlety

The purpose of most papers is simply for the author to keep tenure. Many universities you have to publish, the quality of your research, lecturing, tutorials, lab sessions etc isn't measured. Just the number of times you get published and better still getting cited.

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Samsung claims Apple jury foreman LIED to get REVENGE

Mage
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Peers ...

So maybe a jury of reps from Intel, Microsoft, Nokia, Qualcomm, ARM, Huewei, Sony, Ericsson etc?

:-D

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Mage
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Coat

Meanwhile Google are busy compiling the mother of all prior art databases...

Don't they have some relationship with a search engine to help them?

I think they may have scanned a few books too.

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Apple files 'Shake to Print' iOS patent application

Mage
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Flame

Re: Game Over

Even the "shake" detection would need to be very innovative and not just reading an off the shelf accelerometer.

Who is worse?

The idiots that file this stuff or the idiots that approve the patents.

I would love to see Apple use some tiny part of their cash mountain for R&D. I'm fairly sure their current 2% is including the army of Patent Scribes.

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Mobe app makers doubt Windows 8 will be worth the hassle - poll

Mage
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Alert

Symbian

It once had about 98% install base, but few users had decent data packages.

Out of the gate, most iOS users used the phone on the Internet while only a few % of Symbian users did.

So it's not just market share of sales today or % install base but the data packages and sort of usage. If you only want to make phone calls why buy an iPhone or Android at all?

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Bone-bothering boffins pull TINY fanged dinosaur from drawers

Mage
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Devil

Bulls, Hippos and Rhinos are herbivores. Swans don't even need to peck to break your arm.

(You should see how Hippos deal with crocodiles)

How hard would it have nipped? How aggressive was it?

I'd rather meet a friendly carnivore than some Herbivores

Icon for the fangs of course.

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EE sets October date to power up UK 4G network

Mage
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Speed

Speeds are ALWAYS headline speed, for perfect signal and no other users!

So average cell location = 1/5th of speed or less.

just 6 simultaneous users streaming video

Real speed becomes (40/5) / 6 = 1.33Mbps! Not 40Mbps.

now you know why 3G's 21Mbps is poor.

With about 15 users the "code noise" of CDMA of course means that you have 1/30th not 1/15th speed. So everything else being equal, LTE is twice as good (in same spectrum) but only to the extent of getting say 0.5M to 1Mbps instead of 0.2 to 0.5M, or letting the operator connect 20 users instead of 10,

The other "speed" improvements are simply having more spectrum. Which won't apply at 800, 900 or 1800MHz generally, but only at 2600MHz.

5MHz = 21Mbps (same as 3G HSDPA!)

10MHz = 42Mbps

20Mhz = about 100Mbps

But only for perfect signal. Speed at cell edge is typically 1/100th! All for only one user!

see comparisons of performance vs distance and numbers of users.

Yes, LTE is better than 3G. But if Everything Everywhere get an economic number of customers it will be a slightly faster poorer coverage version of 3G that costs more. No SMS and voice to cross subsidize it. SMS on GSM & 3G costs nothing. Voice is about 1/150th of the traffic for same revenue on 3G. Which is why Three makes no money.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 2 review

Mage
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Keyboard

Is there a decent BT keyboard that works with it and about the same size?

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Samsung adds iPhone 5 to patent battle v Apple

Mage
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To wit

Novel feature:

A compressed ball of hydrogen of sufficient quantity that it spontaneously fuses to Helium without need for external compressing lasers or plasma containment fields.

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WTF is... VoLTE

Mage
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Re: Interesting

Good try, but an operator can tell the difference between their overpriced VOIP and your VOIP application.

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Ofcom tries to chop months off EE's 4G exclusive

Mage
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Boffin

Re: Ireland

LTE is best suited to high density Urban and Suburban.

Depends what you want with your large rural cells.

If you want Mobile voice, then GSM (or even 3G might be better).

If you want Mobile Data, on a large lightly used cell not much to choose between LTE, 3G or even GSM's EDGE+

If you want Rural Broadband, then forget about ANY mobile solution, it won't be reliable, may not connect etc,

Mobile never ensures a connection or a QOS and has no real control over contention other than dropping connections or a poor cap.

Roof top fixed aerials and Cable Broadband over wireless will give reliable 800MHz Rural Broadband. With always on, contention decided at install time and guaranteed speed of 3Mbps to 20Mbps MINIMUM according to how much you spend. Cheaper than LTE and x8 to x16 more capacity per MHz! In use worldwide for years.

LTE is a solution for MOBILE data to complement fixed Broadband. It's not and won't ever be a Broadband solution and certainly not the best Rural Wireless solution unless you need MOBILITY.

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Mage
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Digital Dividend

Actually with 3D, Ultra HD and all those stupid shopping channels we don't actually have TV spectrum to give up.

There is plenty of badly utilised Spectrum from 900 to 2500. So the Mobile operators will have

800

900

1800

2100

2500/2600

Will the consumer get genuinely better coverage, better prices, less dropped connections, guaranteed minimum 3Mbps? No.

Because the regulators are not insisting on enough masts and not insisting on a RAN on each band.

Also 800MHz LTE will interfere with Cable Broadband, Cable TV and Digital TV.

Spectrum management seems to be just a revenue raising exercise. That isn't why independent Regulators from the P&T ministries were created.

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Mage
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Flame

Ireland

In Ireland the upper part of TV band (800MHz digital Dividend) will be free from November 2012.

Unfortunately the Comreg auction plans are gross stupidity.

Of course actually 800 should be paired with GSM band to make one more efficient band with the current licence free 864MHz SRD gadgets in the middle of the duplex split guard band.

With current proposals the 800MHz and 900MHz bands will BOTH have an unused part in the middle, AND the gap at 862MHz to 876MHz ish..

Don't fool yourself. The Digital Dividend is a myth. A small short term licence revenue, a waste of a national resource and just something not much better than 3G at 1800MHz would be. The low frequency means you can't have small cells.

Large cells means poor capacity or poor speed.

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Ubuntu 12.10: More to Um Bongo Linux than Amazon ads

Mage
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Linux

Ubuntu?

You are history here. The latest in a long line of fails. Just as OS X is morphing ot iOS and Walled Gardens, Microsoft shoots their own feet off at the waist, with just about everything they have released, Canonical snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

All they had to do was have what they had two years ago, but faster, smoother, more consistent and fewer bugs. Instead they stick joss sticks up their nose and ear buds with loud whale song and go La La La.... IDIOTS

Debian 4 months ago, we shut down our last MS (Windows 2000) Server. .

So YET AGAIN, for about the 30th year running this won't be the year UNIX, BSD, Xenix, Cromix, Linux etc becomes successful on the desktop.

I guess most people need to stick with XP, or maybe Windows 7. I'll stagger on with a mix of XP (one ten year old laptop) and Debian (all the other Laptops, server etc).

Using various *nx since 1985. It would make a grown Penguin cry.

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Navy devs cook up Android spyware to map your location - in 3D

Mage
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Devil

Re: This can be used for good, as well as evil.

You are making the assumption that Google's Street view is good and not evil. Maybe it is, but maybe it isn't.

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Happy birthday, Compact Disc

Mage
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Unhappy

Re: Is there any truth

No, but DVDs are made differently and some are unplayable due to deterioration of the reflective layer.

Since they are pressed, in theory they could be repaired.,

CDs and DVDs you "write" yourself only have the groove pressed. The 1s and 0s are dark and light (or opaque and clearish) dye instead of bits. They do become unreadable. Especially if left exposed to light.

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Mage
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Thumb Up

Fall in sales

Added to the list of other reasons, all valid, is maybe there is less new music to buy? There is now mostly only the new recordings. Also have you tried to buy anything with a decent loudspeaker in an ordinary shop? Headphones is very solitary and also unless less you have a "bin-aural" processor, stereo isn't designed for it.

Home taping never killed Music. But I think the industry is making a good attempt at it.

Before as well as new releases, which might have been better, the previous back catalogue of 80 years approximately was being released? Not that all of it was ever put on CD, nor have I bought all the music I'd like to buy. Buying DVDs because the TV is so poor takes all my CD budget.

When click did click Emile click Berliner's click Pressed click Gramophone click disc click replace click Edison's click Moulded click Phonograph click cylinder? click click click click ...

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Viewsonic buries fondleslabs for punters, flogs biz tabs instead

Mage
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Alert

Subsidize HW?

Apple?

Mawhahah!

The iTunes is a 30% levied Gravy, for almost no outlay, true. But no Apple HW is subsidised. Actually they are overpriced as they have up to 3x the profit margin that others have. I bet the others would love to know how Apple does it.

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Sharp punches out über-retina phone screen

Mage
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Coat

Nice photoframe?

A real 35mm print is about 5M pixel, at about postcard size

Many photo frames are only about 640 x 272, (0.175 M pixel) or 800 x 480 (0.384M pixel) at best.

1920 x 1080 is just over 2M pixels which isn't bad.

I wonder what the power consumption is and can they do a 6" but 3:1 format 3600 x 1200 (21:9) which I think will fit in the pocket better than 5" 16:9

I wonder what it will be in?

Apple can trademark "Retina Display" as a name (if someone else didn't first). No way can they prevent anyone making any display they want and calling it something different.

Also Apple didn't design or develop the "Retina Display" in the iPhone. They buy a finshed product from Foxconn with the display developed and made elsewhere.

Mine's the one with the gadget showing very realistic photographs. Some dithering could be applied to increase the tonal range...

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Scottish PhDs hoist kilt to reveal storage array killer

Mage
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Thumb Up

Wonderful

What a pity that this wasn't part of what MS Lanmanager was (1.0 on OS/2 (1987?), MS-OS/2 & UNIX 1989, MS Windows For Workgroups 1992 and NT3.1 in 1993).

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Satellite broadband rollout for all in US: But Europe just doesn't get it

Mage
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Re: the sub headline?

There are two main Ka Satellite Internet services in UK, one from Avanti on Hylas 1 and one from Tooway on Ka-Sat.

Neither (nor the resellers) are anything to do with DTH TV such as Sky. Nor actually is it Broadband.

Sky don't actually own ANY satellites nor do they own the Set boxes or Dish on your house. They are a Pay TV Service that also has some channels they sell to Cable Operators.

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Mage
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Satellite is NEVER broadband

The ENTIRE satellite capacity of UK is about one small rural exchange or Virgin street cabinet,

Contention is dire. Look at fine print of the Cap. It's horrible.

Also HTTP acceleration doesn't work with 3rd party VPN

Latency is 25 x worse than real Broadband.

Satellite is for people living where there is ZERO infrastructure and no mains electricity. You can in reality get fibre cheaply to anywhere that has mains electricity.

Fibre to the Home, or at worst Kerb UNIVERSALLY is about the same cost as an LTE rollout that does about 70% geographic coverage and average loaded cell speeds of about 1Mbps to 2Mbps.

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US said to designate Assange 'enemy' of the state

Mage
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Childcatcher

Assange cannot be a traitor

But it doesn't prevent him from being a self serving egotistical idiot. I suppose it's a bit better that he molests grown women than children.

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Mage
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Mushroom

Re: @John 104

"live in the Free World © owe the US a never-ending debt of gratitude "

Actually it was Probably Germany Attacking Russia that Saved UK and Western Europe from Hitler. Not the Americans. They OTH impoverished Britain and are the only Nation ever to use Atomic weapons on Civilians (or indeed at all other than tests).

Where is the Eastern Bloc today? Was it anything the US did? No. The US never won. The Russians just changed the rules.

Or maybe they were playing Calvinball all along.

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Network boffins say Terabit Ethernet is TOO FAST

Mage
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Bonding

That's why they are not doing 1Tbps. It has to be cheaper than bonding (i.e. cost per bit must be lower) since it's fibre only and many fibres in one cable is no big deal.

So they must think 400Gbps optical can be be cheaper than 2 x 100Gbps. In a reasonable time frame. Since the 1 out of 62 was only voting to decide later, the 400Gbps is pretty unanimous.

"It's Ethernet, but not as we know it, Jim."

400GHz happens to be around the upper limit of currently available Microwave ICs. The folks using these buy bare chips rather than fully packaged parts. Perhaps there will be Soc pairing with a laser diode /photo diode interface?

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JK Rowling's adult novel arrives on ebook full of FAIL

Mage
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Childcatcher

Adult Book?

I've been assured it's a book for Adults and not an Adult book

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Canonical bungs kill switch onto Ubuntu's Amazon 'adware'

Mage
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Linux

Debian

This is just the latest in Ubuntu losing the plot.

Also Phones, 7" tablets and regular screen+keyboard+mouse need different GUIs. The one fits all approach with GUI best for a Touch 7" tablet is as stupid as MS putting regular windows GUI on a 3.5" 320x240 PDA Windows CE.

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Fuming fanbois flood 'flimsy iPhone 5 Wi-Fi' forum

Mage
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Black Helicopters

LTE is working fine?

Since it's not compatible with the majority of LTE bands (and thus most countries), that narrows down the location of the complainant.

He'll soon meet a helicopter.

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Politico's locked room mystery Linux install crime solved

Mage
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Black Helicopters

Magic

Priceless.

I wonder did a Parent or Grandparent of Michael Grimm the Republican work with McCarthy?

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Blazing new comet may OUTSHINE THE MOON in 2013

Mage
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Coat

Hmm.

Watch out for strange plants around the same time. XKCD can tell us how many lasers it's equivalent to.

Mines the one with really dark sunglasses in the pocket.

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Intel launches ARM battery life Windows 8 Atom chip

Mage
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Alert

Misleading

Battery life while actually DOING stuff is what counts.

It's what, about x5 worse than an ARM for battery life when actually running?

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Apple MacBook Air 13in review

Mage
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Holmes

Decent? Really?

"decent display featuring a 1440 x 900 resolution." Only if it's rotatable to portrait, maybe.

That's very low. you need at least "something x 1200" to read A4 / Letter documents without scrolling. Which is why I'm waiting for the "big" kindle to get cheaper. There is no other eReader that can sensibly handle A4 PDFs. 12 years ago I had 1400 x 1050. For 10 years I've had 1600 x 1200.

These are toys. Also anything with a shiny screen *WILL* give a headache if there is reflected movement and is seriously poorer for reading than "matt". I've had "Matt" Laptop screens for about 15 years. Best CRT before that was in 1981, ACT Sirius 1 / Victor 9000

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Google spikes old MS file formats

Mage
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Flame

Makes no difference

The import / export/formatting etc was always rubbish anyway.

I'd avoid Google docs / apps like the plague for anything that isn't

a) Collaborative

b) Less than 3 pages.

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Carbon fiber MacBooks to appear soon?

Mage
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Re: Patent... really!

No, nothing innovative at all.

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Mage
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Childcatcher

Madness

Never mind Patent vs Design Patent vs Registered Design,

Shirley the only protection they can have is Copyright, and only if hit has a big Apple with a bite out of it. Though that was them being fans of the Liverpool Lads.

When are they switching to ARM instead of intel in the Mac Book? That would be news, yet another Apple patent where x10 or more was invested in the "Patent" process than any real R or D isn't news. It would be news nearly if there was a halt on these.

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Google celebrates as Android hits 25 billion downloads

Mage
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Coat

Re: ...but how many of those downloads got erased seconds after trying the app?

So it's like a PC then?

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Brit turns Comp Sci coursework into $100k glad-rags search biz

Mage
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Big Brother

Google?

I imaging that Google will snap this up. Most of their good stuff is bought in and EVERYTHING they have is to sell adverts. Search is important to them.

You can't sensibly search for images on t'Webs currently unless they are labelled, Though recently Google has been using the surrounding text to "guess", sometimes with hilarious results.

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Chip strip reveals 'handmade' Apple A6

Mage
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Headmaster

Thermal & Standard sub parts

Looks like library parts placed into a die to maximise spacing and reduce thermal issues. Only Intel with their insanely over complex designs needs to "fill" the chip.

Any layout is a mix of autorouting and manual expertise or else anyone could buy the tools and do it.

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Einstein's brain FOUND ON APPLE iPAD

Mage
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Hmm.

Isn't this like trying to understand art by analysing the pigments?

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Mmmm, delicious new sugar batteries keep gadgets up all night

Mage
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Flame

Operating Temperature?

I thought Sodium batteries

a) Had to run Very Hot.

b) Are quite fun if water gets in.

But maybe I'm thinking of Sulphur batteries and metallic Sodium.

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