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* Posts by Mage

2640 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Microsoft copies Google with silent browser updates

Mage
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Boffin

"pin" to Task bar?

Umm.. you can save a web link and have it on your task bar in XP. It then opens with a single click in the default ("any") Browser.

So how is IE9 and the Apple clone Win7 taskbar pin better?

In fact I suspect you can do similar on ANY OS and Browser actually modern enough to be usable on the Internet safely (XP is over 10 years old).

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Apple mulls new chip boffinry HQ in Israel

Mage
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Happy

Terry Pratchet is correct

The Truth will make you Fret

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Mage
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Danger in Israel?

It's no worse and possibly better than any time since 1948. Plenty of International companies invest there. Possibly no Iranian or Syrian ones though.

Syria claims the entire region including Lebanon and Jordan is Syria.

Iran just isn't too fond of Arabs. But hates Israel more.

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Mage
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R&D

About time Apple did more than design boxes and GUI. I don't think they have done much R&D since the original power PC macs that replaced the 68000 based Macs. There is certainly no "developed by Apple" HW in an iPhone or iPod or iPad. Or UltraMac.

I welcome their decision to do R&D.

How many years has Intel been doing R&D in Israel?

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Mage
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No oil

Also since 1948 all the Arab countries kicked out most of their Jewish Populations. Many trades blocked (like Medieval Europe), so many professional (lots of subsistence peasants too). After 1933 Lots of European Jewish people tried to go to the Palestine Mandate (4/5ths is now Jordan). Even when the Muslim Turkish Ottomans ruled a lot of people got Turkish permission prior to 1914 (a lot at end of Victorian Era) escaping Czarist and East European Pogroms.

Then the ones surviving the Hitler/Nazi extermination of 6M (many educated people) in Europe, many went to USA or Palestine Mandate/ Israel after WWII. Then in 1980s to 1990s many left Russia.

Jewish people, especially the secular ones always have believed in Literacy and Education. There was once a Golden age of Moslem scholarship (women not invited though), but by the latter days of Ottoman Empire the average Arab (Christian, Druze or Moslem) had no opportunity or interest in Education. The Ottomans at one stage controlled almost all the Middle East, Turkey, parts of Europe and North Africa. They were lazy and corrupt rulers and not much liked by their Arab subjects. It wasn't hard for Lawrence of Arabia to make promises. However the French and British broke most of the promises made 1914 to 1936 to Arabs in the middle East and THEY, not Arabs decided most of the borders and Countries. "Modern", Lebanon, Jordan, Kuwait, Iraq, Syria, Israel and other places exist in present form due to French and UK decisions.

The Arabs didn't know about this till too late. Not that they could have changed a thing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sykes%E2%80%93Picot_Agreement

The Iranians are and have been very well educated. But don't call them Arabs. Moderate ones will just tell you politely that you might as well accuse Australians of being Chinese.

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Apple's Galaxy Tab ban was best advertising ever - Samsung

Mage
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I always think it sounds like a sugar free version of a "Douglas Adams" cocktail.

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The moment a computer crash nearly caused my car crash

Mage
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Off Button on Dashboad?

Lucky you.

Some are only reset if you disconnect the battery!

Some can only be reset by diagnostics computer.

Air bag warning on on car at least can only be reset by Power off, disconnection of sensor, repower, power off, reconnect, repower.

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Microsoft gives up on proprietary 2D barcode, accepts NFC

Mage
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Colour was a fail

Colour printing is so much slower and more expensive.

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Laptop display pixel counts to quadruple in 2012

Mage
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HD isn't good enough for documents

I have a 1920x1080 TV to watch video.

I want to create and read documents on a Laptop or PC. A WS screen isn't a good shape. 1800 lines in 4 x3 aspect would be good at about 133 to 150dpi At 180 dpi you need over 2000 lines

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Strictly Come Dancing in 3D: the facts

Mage
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3D?

Stereoscopic. Not 3D

No one has 3D broadcasts. Not even the old monochrome ones long ago & far away.

Stereoscopic doesn't work for 20% (1/5th) of people and affects many more badly. Why is the BBC wasting money on a Gimmick first pushed by Cinema to "fight back" against TV and second pushed by TV makers that want to sell new sets?

There is very little merit to it compared to colour. A waste of Licence fee to promote pointless and overpriced TV upgrades.

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Ofcom squeezes local TV into 20 cities' tight White Spaces

Mage
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dotdavid: Not Valuable

Worthless Frequencies. White Space is a myth. The channels ARE in use enough places that that further use will interfere.

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Mage
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We used to have Local / Regional TV

It was called ITV

Either the frequencies shouldn't be used at all (as "White space" is a myth) or use needs to be very very carefully licensed. With immediate and permanent closure if any viewers of "main" stations are affected by co-channel interference.

The Wales/Kippure experience in SE Ireland and parts of Wales shows that DTT is less resilient to Co-channel interference than Analogue. The time for "White Space" experimenting was from 1969, not now.

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Bristol boffins bring qubit computing a tiny step closer

Mage
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Mushroom

Vacuum Tubes

You mean prior to 1940? (a lot used in Bombs)

1939

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_ef39.html

1940

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_1t4.html

1950s (Russian) 8.5mm x 43mm

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_1j17b.html

(better versions in late 50s and 1960s. Family production till 1991)

1959 Usable as Triode 5.5mm x 28mm

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_dm160.html

Similar Russian 6.5 x 25mm

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_iv-15.html

1960

http://www.radiomuseum.org/tubes/tube_ck5676.html

(Family production till about 1971). Versions in Korean war

a similar size used in WWII bomb proximity fuses. One RAF raid would use up 250,000 sub-miniature tubes, a miniaturised version of 1T4 etc.

Regular mains Radio valves about 3W for the heater. By late 1950s sub-miniature military types only used 14mW for the filament heater and could use 22V HT.

Early post WWII hearing aids used valves based on the WWII sub-miniature types for proximity fuses and same size as a 1953 transistor. 0.7V filament to power two in series of 1.4V silver cell and HT a miniature 22.5V battery about same size as PP3

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Chrome is the most secured browser - new study

Mage
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Flame

Wrong headline.

Chrome most secured and Popular Corporate Spyware ever.

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Samsung gets a few days of Christmas

Mage
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$$$$

I presume the prices are AUD and not USD?

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Steve Jobs' last design: New Apple HQ pics

Mage
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Pint

Apricot

An interesting PC with a somewhat too small screen based on the Victor 9000 / ACT Sirius1

Both far far better than "official IBM PC" of the era, but not "compatible". Lacking the Reality Distortion field of the Apple, Apricot is now gone sadly.

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RIM gives up on BBX name after court order

Mage
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Happy

X?

Not many of today's Jobsian latter day disciples remember OS 9 to realise the X in OS X is a 10, and not "Echs".

Though perhaps Apple is fond of the X and one the more recent releases really ought to be OS 11 ?

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Mage
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QNX

It's a really good non-Linux really "Real time" OS. (Linux can at best be "kludged" to be real time). It's quite old and used for storage controller cards, embedded systems. You know, stuff that maybe has an LED or two as a UI.

So bound to take some time to add a GUI. Though years ago QNX got a sort of UNIXy bloat and an attack of X Windows I think, so not exactly from scratch.

Still strange idea I thought to buy QNX, though it does (or did) have a good reputation as a RTOS. Handy for running an actual Phone stack on.

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Baby-kissers battle over what to do with White Spaces

Mage
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"Television broadcasting is horribly inefficient: a massive transmitter blankets a huge area with a single frequency, while a neighbouring transmitter has to be on a different band to avoid interference – but that means the neighbouring transmitter's band lies empty on the far side of the first transmitter, which is where a low-power White Space device can lurk."

Wrong. TV Broadcasting is up to 10,000 more efficient than Internet solutions.

Wrong. It's only mostly empty. It's stupid simplistic analysis like this that is leading to the fantasy of "white space"

Mobile / Cellular radio has to use 3 to 9 channels with only one available to a particular person for a similar reason.

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Groupon grotty grotto rage forces Santa's chief elf to quit

Mage
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Hmm

Wasn't this in 2010? papers missed Christmas and filed it for this year?

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Facebook disses Effin Irishwoman

Mage
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Why?

Why do people use Facebook at all?

Don't they know how to use Email and the CC and BCC as well as TO

Maybe I should design a local Email client that runs in a Browser and looks like Twitter/facebook/Linkedin?

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WD dries out flood-trashed fab, pumps out first disks

Mage
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So..

Wait till the summer before doing Disk upgrades.

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Tesco: buy a DVD, get the download free

Mage
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Coat

The other way round makes more sense

Buy it ONLINE and get the Download at once and the DVD is posted to you?

Perhaps they will do that next. Or can you do it now on Tesco's online delivery Site?

Seeing as someone is likely to put the Jars of Pickles and Block of Cheese on top of the Bread, I've only used Tesco's online delivery to send my Mum flowers.

Anyone is welcome to use their online service and get the delivery to my address though.

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Hollywood siren invented key phone tech TRUE

Mage
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Headmaster

Well known

But probably only by RF boffins

Other well known and less well known tech heroes before 1950s

(Hedy is near the bottom, it's an almost unordered list though)

http://www.techtir.ie/history/innovators

Grace Hooper and Cobol is too "modern" for the list..

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The TARDIS through the ages

Mage
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Presumably

It was redesigned because someone nicked the original when it was on tour. Though when I visited it, I didn't think it was the original, but more mock-up done by someone who had glanced at it once.

I do remember Ian & Barbara being suspicious of Susan's answers and wanting to meet her Grandfather and following her.

Even as a small kid that seemed like a couple of massive plot holes, I may have missed part that made it more believable:

1) Why was she at School /College?

2) How did she get enrolled without address, biirth cert etc?

Someone once said the Best SF is where there is only one "unbelievable" fact . Of course Dr. Who isn't SF now, if it was once. Sort of a rubbish mixture of Horror and Teenage drama now. I guess it gets such good ratings because the dilution of Multichannel T, Reality TV, Soaps, phone in and such that TV is generally now so poor we are reduced to to watch DVD box sets.

If there are repeats of any good programs they are either on daytime or pay tv.

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Nokia has good Black Friday, won't be sharing with NSN

Mage
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NSN

It was a bad "merger" and degraded Siemens' excellent support & Services.

No doubt too much middle managers.

It was a gift to the Chinese.

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Mage
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Likely increase is NSN

NSN has been a disaster for Telcos, Nokia and Siemens.

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Malls suspend plan to track shoppers' cellphones

Mage
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Black Helicopters

Online and Opt-in

But it SHOULD be Opt-in for Online tracking,

People doing bad stuff is no justification for other people to do bad stuff.

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Cheap-as-chips kit smashes Intel's HD video encryption

Mage
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Boffin

The point is

1) HDCP is simply an irritant and extra cost for consumer as content is pirated either from the disc or the transmission (a lot more conveniently as the content is professionally compressed).

2) It doesn't even be secure anyway.

It's simply a royalty revenue stream for Intel. It's pointless, not needed, protects nothing even if it wasn't circumvented and can easily be circumvented.

It should be dropped on all BD players and HD receivers to reduce cost. Then after a while TV makers can drop it too and save money.

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Graphene circuits from an inkjet printer

Mage
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Yes

They will say this is what they do with the current ink pigments, hence the current high cost :(

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Hybrid clouds 2012: the private cloud myth lives

Mage
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It's only the "cloud" if it's run and owned by someone else and off site and you don't know or care how many physical servers it is.

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Asus Eee Pad Slider SL101

Mage
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I like

But it needs to be 1/2 the price.

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Huge PDP-11 in a lorry: How I drove computers into schools

Mage
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Apple II

First and last Apple product we had.

it eventually spent most of its time running CP/M on 1Mbyte 8" floppies using a Z80 card. A Research Machine 380Z or S100 system would have worked out cheaper.

The next computer was an ACT Sirius 1 (Victor 9000). Then PCs. It took 4 years for the PC to catch up with Sirius 1.

We got a contract service/maintaining TRS80, BBC Micros, Apple II, Research Machine 380z etc in schools. Most of the computers in Schools in early 1980s a sheer waste of money. They should have bought the teacher one for home first.

Even in the mid 1990s teaching trainee secretaries about PCs, Computer Filing, Word-processing and Spreadsheets the easiest ones to teach and best students came from schools with no computers.

Computers in schools could have achieved so much more. Even today the "tool" is badly taught and under utilised.

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Man nearly faints with relief as cops drop chopper charge

Mage
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So ...

You're new here Iainn?

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Dragonriders of Pern author Anne McCaffrey dies

Mage
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Alien

Will be missed

Unlike most Authors she helped newcomers. Her love of Opera and Music is obvious.

The later Pern books maybe suffer by being more written to satisfy the demands of Pernese Fandom than her own. Plenty of good reading apart from Pern or the later Pern books.

Many of her books are better than some more popular authors. Depends what you expect. Pern is a tricky mix of SF and Fantasy actually.

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Chromebooks: the flop of 2011?

Mage
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Flame

Chrome books are Stupid unless < $50

Connectivity isn't cheap enough, reliable enough or ubiquitous.

Letting Google mind all your data? Stupidity.

No real saving in cost. This has been the case for over 25 years that a computer that has a terminal application is a comparable price or cheaper than a full function graphics terminal.

Not a new concept either. Simply a different protocol to the past (VT220, X-Windows, Citrix, VNC etc). If you have enough "grunt" to run a modern browser and all the stuff for remote docs and video you only need storage to have a decent real computer.

A Traditional OS too complicated? Well iOS and Android are appliance type solutions and OS X is heading that way. MS Windows and Ubuntu is attempting to be like that hence newer versions more irritating to those needing "traditional" flexibility in configuration, desktop and applications.

So called "Cloud Computing" (a new name for an old system, older than Microcomputers or PCs) is a complement not a replacement for either the "Appliance" type gadget (locked down tablet, like Archos, Apple, Kindle, Android) or full fat OS experience (GNU/Linux without a limited tablet interface, Windows XP and earlier, older versions of OSX, Solaris, various IBM stuff etc).

If you *COULD* do a Chromebook for $50, probably a netbook could be $50. So it would be still doomed. ANY Computer or "appliance device" with decent Browser can do what a Chrome book does.

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Inside the BBC's R&D Labs

Mage
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R&D

They are not spending enough and it's a pale shadow of what it used to be.

Some of the stuff of course is worthless and stupid. Without enough resources and budget too much will be trivial.

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Reg reader ratings go worldwide

Mage
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Alert

Geo IP

The BBC Database thinks otherwise.

As does

http://www.maxmind.com/app/locate_demo_ip

(which even lists nearest city rather than my ISP HQ).

My IP rarely changes (pool of 3 I think according to Fixed Wireless channel used)

I'm on a 14km Microwave link. Not DSL or Mobile.

Odd. I wonder can we persuade the Beeb to use your database for iPlayer?

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Mage
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UK Readers?

I've El Reg maybe twice ever from UK and I always had the ratings.

Maybe you mean which domain people use to access your site?

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Nokia's Great Lost Platform

Mage
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Sad

A real weepie.

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Kindle Fire: An open letter to Jeff Bezos

Mage
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Flame

Google Apps

I try to avoid them

I have a gmail address I can send and receive, but do web mail on other accounts. Mostly I use a regular Imap & PoP3 client.

When I have to use a "creepy" Google App I use a standard browser. I don't use Chrome "spyware" either.

If I was buying something especially for Google Apps, I'd make sure and buy a Google approved device. Archos and others AGES ago had devices not support by Google so no Google Apps.

You sir should not have been given space to blow your ill-informed Trumpet on El Reg.

If I bought a "kindle" anything though it would have to support technical PDFs. Or maybe I'd buy two, a big one for PDFs and paperback book sized one for novels.

However I'm happy with my laptop (1600x1200 so allows A4 PDFs) and paper novels. Maybe when price drops for an 10" to 11" approx kindle I'll buy it and a small one.

Google apps would be irrelevant. As would iPads.

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Irish website promises you'll never miss a funeral again

Mage
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More than a glass of Sherry usually too.

The post is required, and must contain letters.

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Jobs mulled building own mobile network for iPhones

Mage
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Get used to it Operators

People just want a connection, a pipe.

Operators have NOTHING else that people want or need.

SMS? Charging lots for something that costs nothing...

They charge about x300 times per MByte for voice (2G, 3G) than Data. Expect data prices to double when the old licences to print money (SMS and voice) evaporate.

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Adobe Flex SDK bombshell STUNS developers

Mage
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If

maybe they will next open source the Flash player.

Sounds not impossible now.

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Eleven - if you will - rocktastic music movies

Mage
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Coat

Not exactly just Rock

But Shirley the "blues Bros" should get a mention in passing at least?

Mines the one stuffed with DVDs.

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Eurozone crisis: We're all dooomed! Here's why

Mage
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UKIP?

Hardly an unbiased commentator.

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ARM rolls out new GPU, loses head

Mage
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Shh!

Don't tell anyone ARM is based in the UK or UK "investors" or the Government will find a way to wreck them.

Inmos Transputer was a good idea too.

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Ubuntu republic riven by damaging civil wars

Mage
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Bleagh

Yet again the promising Linux has shot itself in the Feet. Removing both legs.

Not everyone uses a Tablet / Mini-Netbook.

Debian + Ice Window Manager for Older HW anyone?

It doesn't make sense that newer versions of OS need new HW unless your partner(s) are AMD or Intel.

Essentially the only bit of PCs that wear out are the keyboards and Mice and on Laptops/Netbooks additionally the Battery.

Of course HDD or SSD can fail any time.

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Common brain parasite 'can affect host's actions'

Mage
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Own a cat?

No one owns a Cat. A Cat might think it owns you.

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Elgato EyeTV Mobile

Mage
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Specs?

MPEG4?

DVB-T2?

AAC?

Or is it plain vanilla obsolete DVB-T + MPEG2 + MP2 only?

The UK will have SD on DVB-T2 + MPEG4 ffrom end 2012

Some countries ONLY have MPEG4 SD.

The DTT networks in UK and Ireland are planned assuming roof top aerial. Only those areas in direct close view of transmitter can expect an Indoor aerial to work.

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