* Posts by Mage

4467 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

The Nano-NAS market is now a femto-flop being eaten by the cloud

Mage
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Raid 5

Also the rebuild time for a cheap NAS with Raid 5 is huge. With three disks this is more likely too, than with two disks by x 3/2 factor

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Shopping for PCs? This is what you'll be offered in 2016

Mage
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Linux vs Win10

Linux seems to have better support for old hardware (Epson Scanner + PCMCIA 1460 SCSI or PC PCI 2940 SCSI just worked) compared to Win 10

Linux seems to now have good support for new hardware.

Putting Linux Mint + Mate Desktop on 12 year old XP laptop will work, or replacing Win7 or Win 8.x on a newer computer.

1G RAM and 32G CF card or HDD seems to be a reasonable minimum spec for Linux. Less RAM and HDD is usefully feasible for simply LibreOffice, Firefox, Thunderbird, Filezilla and The Gimp. Kindle Reader, Notepad++ and Digiguide work fine on WINE (1G or more RAM a good idea).

Unlike Windows, 8G ram is available even on a 32bit install on a 64 bit CPU.

Strangely Linux version of Skype works better than Windows version.

Linux Calibre works better than Windows version.

So compatibility of computers with Linux, IMO is now better than with Windows 10.

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Mage
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Thumb Down

Re: Any news on laptop resolutions?

2002: I had 1600 x 1200 on my laptop. I'd like better than that.

P.S. It still works.

Why would you buy a new PC or Laptop to replace Win7 with Win10?

Surely you'd only buy a new PC or laptop if the old one was broken. Unless you are doing bleeding edge games, or rendering or decent Virtual Reality, you don't need to replace any DECENT PC made in last 10 years for better speed.

I'd like to buy a new laptop without an OS.

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iPhones clock-blocked and crocked by setting date to Jan 1, 1970

Mage
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Re: If the Phone Network time ...

I don't think the mobile time is NTP? Because dumb phones with no TCP/IP can have clock set by the Mobile Network Provider.

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Mage
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FAIL

If the Phone Network time ...

What if the phone company accidentally sets their server used to push mobile phone time?

If a Phone company messes up their Solaris / Unix / Linux server the automatic network time is 1st Jan 1970, cue ALL iPhones with vulnerable iOS falling over?

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Skype users were targeted by bad-ad pushing Angler crooks

Mage
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Devil

Idiot MS

When eBay bought Skype the quality of SW went downhill.

MS. OTH totally made it unusable on many laptops (100% CPU. Why? Something to do with not being able to disable camera? I don't know.)

The UI has got worse. Ironically the Linux version is now better than Windows Desktop version, for a certain definition of better.

The adverts in a product that for years never had adverts, for a company the size of MS that makes so much from bought products is OBSCENE GREED and was doomed to server malware. It will again. That's why I have noscript in the browser, it's only incidental that it blocks adverts.

MS have totally lost the plot.

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Time acquires Myspace, creates 2004's most fearsome media giant

Mage
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Big Brother

Viant's Advertising Cloud service boasts that it has data for sale on 1.2 billion people.

Ought to be illegal if it isn't?

Wasn't Readers Digest bought just for the database?

Was there some issue with Customer data of Radio Shack/Tandy being sold when it "died" purely for marketing.

Misuse of original data, IMO.

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Sick and tired of modern Windows? Upgrade to Windows 3.1 today – in your web browser

Mage
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Dosbox

Runs Win 3.1 even if there is no x86

Loads win 3.1 in about 4s from network share.

We had some 386 PC for it back then. later upgraded to WFWG 3.11 with Win32s, VFW, 32 bit disk driver and MS 32 bit TCP/IP. Win 95 was basically that all rolled up with a new shell, First version Win95 had no USB and didn't have TCP/IP by default. The minimum level RAM Win 3.x and Win 9x specs were not enough to run Word (Office 4.3 later Office 95) and TCP/IP and a browser.

I copied the dying install disks of Word 2.0a to a "gold" style archive CD as i had lots of licences. I must try it on WINE.

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Bluetooth direct to the internet: What could possibly go wrong?

Mage
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Re: 433/868Mhz RF comms

They are just ASK/OOK slow speed physical links. Lowest level. You put whatever security you want on the TTL serial pins. It's trivial even with a PIC to have a CRC and 256 bit encryption, as the maximum data rate is probably about 1kbps to 10kbps at physical layer, certainly less than 50K. The TTL Serial data needs to be Manchester encoded as the links don't work well with a DC component. Trivial. Some receivers are optimised for Manchester encoding between 30kHz and 45kHz due to the AC band pass filter on the baseband of the receiver. They are really really cheap and easy to get CE approval as SRD. The USA band is at I think 385MHz rather than the European 433 MHz SRD allocation which is slap bang in middle of USA and Europe 70cm Amateur band. The EU 864 MHz SRD band can be less interference, it's wider, so supports up to about 1Mbps simple OOK/ASK or PSK and maybe 16Mbps very short range using QAM.

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Mage
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Facepalm

Re: Bluetooth will always be handy

Bluetooth IS wireless, it's same 2.4GHz band. It can reduce speed of WiFI as the S/N is then worse for wifi.

Simplest is a 3.5mm stereo jack. Though Apple wants to abolish it so that they can charge more for earphones, even though there are stereo bluetooth earphones already. Bluetooth means re-encoding the audio, so in theory it's lower quality than a 3.5mm jack analogue connection.

It's true that the only advantages (especially for intermittent and low data rate gadgets) of Bluetooth over WiFi is the simple pairing (though often too simple with fixed 0000 code and poor security) and lower power (which means very short range, x10 range needs x100 power, that's physics, nothing to do with WiFi or Bluetooth or 3G or 4G etc).

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Australian astroboffins reveal hundreds of hidden galaxies

Mage
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Alien

Wonderful

Fantastic Boffinry

We didn't really find them, they are not lost :)

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Amazon UK boss is 'most powerful' man in food and drink

Mage
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Facepalm

Amazon buying a Grocery company?

Buying a small online one, that most people never heard of won't happen. They DID buy IMDB, Goodreads, The Book Depositary etc because that makes sense.

If their bricks and mortar Bookshops work and their own online Grocery works, then they might buy a bricks and mortar chain, or create one.

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Don't you see these simple facts? Destroy Facebook and restore human Liberty

Mage
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Re: just ignore FB if it's not your cup of tea

Impossible, because the human race is on average gullible. Loads of people in the family, friends, workmates etc using it.

Companies or media outlets you want to use are promoting it or using it.

Ignoring it is about as viable as using translation, video sharing, maps and search with Google. Is babelfish still running? Dailymotion instead of Youtube, Apple or MS instead of Google maps/Streetview/Earth, Er ... Bing/Yahboo instead of Google?

It's only slightly easier to ignore Twitter.

Idiots keep joining Linkedin and giving them all their email adresses. There ought to be a law against that and Whatsapp's slurping of addresses.

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Nokia kicks off pre-MWC race with tech show-and-tell

Mage
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5G

I predict 5G will mostly be about management, seamless bonding of data channels that use different bands and maybe even 3G and 4G at the same time. Possibly even on Edge. Better integration with WiFi too.

It won't be specifically about new spectrum (any generation can use any spectrum), or new air interfaces or any stuff like that.

Existing recent basestations will work, maybe with a minimum of new controllers.

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Canonical reckons Android phone-makers will switch to Ubuntu

Mage
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Re: Too late for Ubuntu

Yes, they messed up their desktop product (search was only a part of it).

I can't see why any major phone maker would swap out the Google supported eco-system for Ubuntu. It's not as if the phone makers care about Google's dominance or creepy slurping of user's data!

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Facebook cares about you, yes you, so much it won't give up on India

Mage
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Devil

Facebook cares about you ...

No, they are doing this scheme to make money.

Facebook are a successful exploitive parasite encouraging people to be foolish and making money by exploiting them. The only difference with Twitter is it's not doing it well enough to make money. Google, even though Google Plus isn't doing well, is the most successful exploitive parasite due to their dominance on Search feeding dominance in Advertising.

None of these companies care about you, except as resource to be milked.

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Are Indians too stupid to be trusted with free Internet?

Mage
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Devil

It's not free Internet.

Free Basics has launched in over of the 30 of world’s poorest populations.

And it's not free nor the Internet. It's a malicious exploitation and curated walled garden of data.

I think the Indians are smart.

"Nobody could mistake the Basics walled garden experience for the full internet."

It's not even like AOL or WAP. It's tiny. It's promotion is grossly dishonest.

A fairer analogy would be The Raj's export of Indian Cotton to UK (or maybe just England) and Indians having to buy only British Cotton.

Facebook are only helping themselves.

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Mage
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Google

Possibly worse than Facebook.

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It's official: India bans Facebook's Free Basics

Mage
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Re: "Don't know what it is"

Free Basics is like a crappy Compuserve channel with the weather forecast thrown in.

No, it's not. Credit us with being at least as smart as the Indians.

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Mage
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Free Basics is NOT Charity

Obviously the Indians are smart and know this is purely Advertising funded Facebook walled garden with Facebook deciding who else gets in. As such it would reduce the performance of paid access to rest of the Internet.

It's a far more insidious evil thing than breaching net neutrality.

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EU could force countries to allocate 700 MHz band to mobile by mid-2020

Mage
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Re: Stupid frequencies

Because Mobile Licences are much more revenue than TV allocations.

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Mage
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Re: More EU interference..

Actually it's driven by some national regulators, not the EU.

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Mage
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Ofcom

Ofcom and Comreg both have stated the aim of ENTIRELY abolishing Terrestrial TV. They are "captured" by Mobile interests.

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Mage
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Nothing to do with IOT or Traffic.

Mobile is CELLULAR. Due to weak licence conditions to drive up licence auctions there are not enough base stations on existing bands.

This ONLY about raising revenue from Mobile Licences.

700MHz is too low a frequency for smaller cells. For more traffic and speed you need smaller cells, more base stations at the under used 1800 and 2100 bands. Even the 900MHz can have far more bases.

They are not even utilising the 800MHz they got from TV properly due to useless greedy regulators.

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Remember Netbooks? Windows 10 makes them good again!

Mage
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Madness

1) Such devices ran XP badly, they originally had Linux.

2) Win 10 costs money to replace XP and offers just spyware

3) Linux Mint with Mate works fine.

Why would you bother?

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That's cute, Germany – China shows the world how fusion is done

Mage
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Compost

Though a star lasts rather longer than a Compost heap.

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Mage
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Re: Soon...

We hid it so the Aliens wouldn't know what we are like until after we sign the treaties.

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Mage
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Angel

Re: Uranium Blanket

Build Fission based power stations on same site. The Fusion waste neutrons then turn blanket made from Fission waste into safer radioactive waste, a process which can make additional electricity via steam heated in the "blanket".

Win - Win: Fusion efficiency increased and regular Nuclear power station waste made safer. This has been tested and boosts power generation even of current test fusion plant to net positive.

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Mage
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Re: I Wonder....

Anti-matter power generators are really inefficient but massively powerful batteries. You'll use more energy making the anti-matter, perhaps using fusion power. Probably in a automated facility in space well away from human habitation. Then a space-ship has to carry a tiny fraction of the mass for power, compared to a Fusion powered ship.

Storing anti-matter safely is an interesting problem.

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FTC: Duo bought rights to Android game – then turned it into ad-slinging junkware in an update

Mage
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Win 10 upgrade nags on Win7 & Win8

Surely a misuse?

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Reminder: iPhones commit suicide if you repair them on the cheap

Mage
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Re: Favorite OS, removing RC4

AC?

You talking Linux is your favourite OS? Because while OS X Server edition still exists (Only for Apple stuff), Apple stopped selling real Server Hardware and dropped "Computer" from their name. Also Apple's intention is that OS X should only run on Apple HW. Unlike BSD, Linux, Windows etc.

Apple is purely a Consumer Gadget company that still happens to make some laptops and workstations, a tiny part of their profits.

Maybe Apple stuff "just works" because it's a closed ecosystem? If I buy a TV, DVD player or MP3 player, compared to evil horrible Windows 10, they just work.

I last installed a Windows Server for WSUS to manage updates to XP workstations and Laptops. Since that requirement is now gone, we just use Linux for our servers, it just works.

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Mage
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Flame

Apple says that the policy is designed to keep users safe.

No, it is NOT about safety or security. It's for exactly the same reason chips added to Inkjet cartridges and coffee pods.

It's about ensuring people buy a new iPhone or pay for overpriced Apple services and parts.

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Dragons and butterflies: The chaos of other people's clouds

Mage
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Re: Netflex (@ Mage)

It's very depressing.

That's before anyone mentioned any motive of plastic vs negative Interest. I think the motivation though is partly all that cash (notes and coins) in our pockets is "doing nothing", but if it's in the system instead, then it can be lent out.

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Mage
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Re: Netflex

Unlike Mobile, payments at supermarkets etc, no-one dies if Netflix goes down. Unfortunately the way "bean counters" do stuff and how things work, Netflix is vulnerable to losing customers to boxed discs, Pay TV, YouTube etc, or people making their own amusements. Customers of banks, payment providers etc can't change so easily, thus bean counters don't care to spend extra to avoid a day or two downtime. They don't appreciate what will happen if no-one can make phone calls and no-one can pay for food to two days ...

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Mage
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Devil

Elephants ...

1) Increasing software mono-culture. A patch on ANYTHING, even an AV update, might bork several different providers completely.

2) The local connection to the cloud.

What if we go cashless, all plastic cards and/or phones and banks, retailer's back offices and payment providers all outsource?

There would be food riots in maybe 24 hrs (c.f. Hurricane Katrina).

Most people will die.

What if infrastructure providers outsource to cloud? If the billing system is inaccessible, you'll not be able to use your mobile even if the Mobile Network is operational.

Electricity, gas, pumping water and sewerage.

This Cloud business has no silver lining.

It's only safe as backup systems to your own systems or for anything you can life without for a week, or collaboration on documents. If your business depends on it, some day you'll lose everything.

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Cisco's purple princesses gush workplace joy

Mage
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Re: my little girls "Lego Friends" magazine.

Maybe the girl might like to program a Minestorms bot?

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Official UN panel findings on embassy-squatter released. Assange: I'm 'vindicated'

Mage
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Re: The USA has won ...

This is all about Assange's Ego, not the USA.

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Mage
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Facepalm

Nothing new

The UN is regularly bonkers. Yes, it better having it than not. But anyone that thinks UN is unbiased, accurate, logical and rational is deluded. It's purely international politics.

Saudi Arabia on the UN Human Rights?

The Security Council a hangover from winners of WWII. Read about how the UN Security council approved the Korean War, The folks in Taiwan had the Chinese chair and the Russians were boycotting it. THEN McArthur refused to stop advancing and allow a DMZ at Chinese border, even though virtually ALL of Korean united. UN did nothing! Result, Chinese got more involved and Korean War ended up with original stupid border, which was actually a secret Russian / American agreement before the Japanese defeated in WWII.

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Mozilla officially kills Firefox OS for smartphones in favour of 'Connected Devices'

Mage
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Mushroom

Re: Desktop Vs Phone

MS Mistake 1

Putting Win95 style GUI on a PDA/Phone

MS Mistake 2

Inflicting Zune derived Phone GUI (pretty good for a phone vs Win CE!) on Desktop at 8.x

At the VERY LEAST THREE RADICALLY DIFFERENT GUIs:

1) Phone / small tablet

2) Large (10") Tablet, Laptop, Desk top. (if it can't 100% work without touch and 100% only with touch then two separate GUIs)

3) TV type interface, screen at least 1.2m / 4' away and only Sky style remote.

Servers and Embedded need a flexible array of interfaces with GUI option, low bandwidth text remote and ability to script/automate everything, depending on deployment. Embedded might be LCD text panel on a CNC tool, screen + keypad on ATM, cash register keyboard & multiple format screens, or whatever.

Touch screen cash registers and ATM are niche applications.

N0-ONE EVER is going to be able to make a GUI or an app framework suitable for desktop and phone. Phone suitable apps are like widgets on a laptop etc. A full feature productive application taking advantage of a desktop is IMPOSSIBLE to use on a sub 6" phone screen. MS and Ubuntu are moronic even to promote it. For YEARS we have been able to write a Java App for phone and desktop. You can make the SAME code work on both. But it's pointless. Proper desktop Java applications simply don't have enough screen on a phone and phone /PDA/Tablet centric applications on a desktop are either like tray widgets or poor cut down versions of real desktop applications.

Unity is madness. MS's thing formerly Metro Apps is POINTLESS on a desktop. They are both deluded.

I'm no Apple fan, but they did the right thing chopping up OS X to make iOS and sticking Fingerworks derived GUI on phone and mostly leaving desktop OS X GUI as it was (they have degraded OS X desktop usuability, but not for same reasons as bonkers Ubuntu Unity and MS Win 8.x).

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Mage
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Re: Wut? Ubuntu?

Ubuntu was once the great hope for a desktop alternative to Mac OS X and Windows. But they lost the plot. TOTALLY!. Copied all the WORST GUI ideas of Vista and OS X. Why do you think so many people now recommending Mint + Mate Desktop (or even GTK or Cinammon)?

I've wondered are the same folks contributing to Firefox and Ubuntu / Gnome 3? They should read every Nielsen Group UX article of the last 15 years, use Apple OS 9, Risc OS, Win 98 and NT 4.0. Then repent!

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Mage
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Facepalm

Re: Bunch of Browsers?

Err ... hardly any now! Three only in actual development getting new releases:

MS has two today, one is going to be phased out. Edge is to replace IE

Opera is gone, they are now using WebKit engine, as does Chrome and Safari. Chrome is simply Google's spyware version of Webkit, I think made open source by Apple?

Firefox, Iceweasel, Seamonkey, AFAIK are all based on Mozilla's development of Netscape.

They are all inspired by Mosaic (I have a version, maybe 2 .x, here somewhere on floppy).

It's news to me if there is any other usefully functional graphical browser actually out of alpha, that does CSS, never mind HTML5?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_web_browsers#Vulnerabilities

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Mage
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Coat

Re: This is a distraction!

Firefox (and Thunderbird to a lesser extent) need add-in/ons now to be actually usable, Classic Theme restorer allows most nonsense to be fixed. You STILL have to edit About:config to fix the stupid "Awesome bar" to be a sensible URL entry and the search box to be usable. An application should use the styles, themes etc of GUI the OS I've chosen and configured, not some half baked Kool-aid version.

Embedded:

Sorry, but what the HELL to Mozilla know about designing an OS? Or is it like Android, a variation of Linux (Android adds a Google Binary blob (if you want Playstore Access), Davik instead of Java VM and Android GUI to what is mostly Linux).

We have Linux (with a variation for TVs, OpenWRT or DDwrt for Routers etc), Android, iOS, the child of Fingerworks + OS X (derived from BSD). QNX (used in loads of non-phone embedded stuff before RIM bought it), VX Works

Moribund: Palm, Blackberry, Symbian

Various flavours of non-desktop Windows, based on DOS/Win3.1, Win CE and Win NT.

Even variations of CP/M, Forth, DR MultiDos etc.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_operating_systems#Embedded

What exact market need or problem other than Mozilla ego is a "Firefox" branded Embedded OS supposed to solve?

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Mage
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This is a distraction!

What about making Firefox, Thunderbird better and a Calendar/Scheduling etc stuff?

P.S. BUGS and FUNCTIONALITY. Stop messing up the GUI!

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NASA seeks rocketeers for annual RockOn! shindig

Mage
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Headmaster

Re: I want that

Six months?

I presume the class is learning more than soldering. I teach that in one session.

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Mall owner lays blame at Apple's door for dragging down sales

Mage
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Angel

Irish Malls

The Irish malls are driving local businesses and anything without a high margin back to inner city. Greed. They are massively expensive. Also restrictive. Only one "pharmacy"/Chemist can actually do prescription and only one supermarket.

I don't know of any with an Apple Store, though Carphone Warehouse is nearly as pointless. Tesco sells iThings as well as Samsung etc. Both seems a mad place to buy tech though.

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'Dodgy Type-C USB cable fried my laptop!'

Mage
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Re: Oh, for a sensible cable...

Shaver 2 pin plugs are not USA blades. They are for a power limited transformer isolated sockets. They are based either on Europlug or old UK 5A plug (not the same).

The Blade spacing and shape of Kindle charger with CE mark is USA only. Quite different and narrower spacing than any European plug. There ARE travel adaptor chargers with interchangeable pins. The offending charger isn't a travel type, it's USA flat blade only. It's true that all most shaver outlets have a 110V outlet that will take USA plug. Shaver outlets are NOT the same as as Euro or UK to 2 pin adaptor (of any kind), they are isolated and power limited with a transformer.

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Lights out for Space Vehicle Number 23: UK smacked when US sat threw GPS out of whack

Mage
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Black Helicopters

"A more effective backup for GPS is desperately needed."

No, GPS (or ANY satellite system for any purpose) ought to be the backup for a terrestrial system. What about Solar Flares (well maybe the GPS is too low an orbit?), jamming or someone shooting them down?

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Mage
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Re: Hmm...

There is a serious design flaw in how SFN terrestrial (DAB or DTT, though DTT SFNs tend to be smaller or non-existent) network and Mobile is designed or implemented that it needs satellite at all, except as a backup!

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Did you know ... Stephen Fry has founded a tech startup?

Mage
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Re: Owl or Sky?

I've a nice bridge. It's connected to the Internet. Maybe SF would like to invest in it?

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They're alive! Galileo sats 9 and 10 sending valid signals

Mage
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Re: Clock Sovereignity

But do we care about DAB? A system that increases Listener power consumption by x5 to x20 compared to FM, less than FM quality and can even be worse distortion than a good AM signal. Needs 700 fill in transmitters in UK to give FM coverage too.

DAB also for local / community radio is more expensive and gives too much coverage. Local stations can't use a SFN mux either.

Some DTT SFN and Mobile bases may also stupidly use GPS to save a bit of money (£8000) at install time years ago (yes it's about £1100 now but was more then).

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