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* Posts by Mage

2870 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Microsoft C# chief Hejlsberg: Our open-source Apache pick will clear the FUD

Mage
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Re: Free the VM two!

Actually the opposite may be true.

The Grand daddy of them was maybe the UCSD p-Code. It can be argued that there is no speed penalty for the majority of a Program running on a P-Code VM. The P-Code will be more compact and load faster than many native codes and is more portable. The VM can manage APIs of the OS and also the different CPU architectures. Easier to port a good PM once and have portable programs.

Davik & Android is another flavour.

In theory too biggest issues are reliability and security. Easier with a P-Code VM to ensure the application doesn't scribble all over the OS or have privileges or pinch stuff it shouldn't.

One can envisage a P-Machine that identifies and caches loops or functions/procedures best optimised as native code. So those portions are compiled at run time. No need to native code almost 98% of the program typically.

Also your SoC or CPU designer can create HW execution for some common P-Code constructs (does ARM Neon do this?). Western Digital implemented a HW UCSD p-code machine with their Bit Slice processor chip set. But that idea fails badly unless you have a 2nd CPU to run a decent OS kernel.

Java/C# may be fine for Applications, but OS Kernel and low level drivers probably better in C++ or even Modula-2 or related languages.

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IoT cup claims 'instant' identification of what's in it

Mage
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Re: Wow, El Reg being written by commentards

Which makes it more fun than other sites.

If this works (I'm sceptical), then joking aside it could be useful. Does it actually measure consumption though?

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Mage
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Re: Patented Algorithm

No, an algorithm is ultimately Mathematics. Which can't and shouldn't be patentable.

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Mage
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Re: Patented Algorithm

The PC was generic built out of a Catalogue in a few weeks. There was very little that was actually IBM's. That's a major reason for anyone to win making a Clone. But with Lisa/Mac, only the GUI concept was a generic copy.

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Mage
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Patented Algorithm

Surely the magic sensor is worthy of a patent on this and nothing else.

Why is anyone anywhere allowed to "patent" an algorithm? Copyright the implementation, yes.

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AT&T has Amazon 3D smartphone on lockdown – report

Mage
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"could be the biggest thing"

Unlikely as the Stereoscopic mode makes it annoying to nearly 1/5th of people (who don't see the 3D illusion of Stereo images). The 3D illusion via Stereoscopic imagery is tiring for most people and as it's part of screen degrades 2D image mode.

An Amazon phone would need a different USP to this. Will there be an ordinary screen version?

How does it cope with screen rotation in "3D" mode? The LCD shutter glasses with ordinary syncronised screen can work, but I can't see how a lenticular screen works other than at a fixed angle. Any Nintendo 3DS users care to comment?

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Satellite 'net hype ignores realpolitik

Mage
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Politcs

Unless your country is size of India, Australia, China, Russia, USA etc you can use an Earth Station in a neighbouring country.

If your LEO sats are Mesh Networked you can definitely put Earth Station in a safe place. Actually jamming these is harder than Geo Sat, which is more outside political control than terrestrial Internet. Iran even tried jamming US uplink to TV satellites over Atlantic feeding Europe and Near East using transmitters based in Cuba. They also tried hill top jammers outside towns. They appear have now abandoned this.

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Mage
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Black Helicopters

"Satellite is good for when you're stuck miles away from civilisation "

It's Internet access, but having tested 3 systems, studied it for many years and background in Communication Engineering I can say it's not "Broadband". Internet access without a phone line != broadband. It can be more reliable than Mobile.

Capacity is so low that using "cloud" services, video streaming, Steam etc is impossible due to the low caps (often hourly, daily and weekly as well as monthly).

However LEO works better than "Project Loon" (more reliable and more capacity) but unless the fleet has hundreds of "Sats" the capacity will be poorer than one Geo Ka spot beam. The Ka based Geo Sats have of course rubbish latency, but each sat is perhaps 200x capacity of a LEO satellite.

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London commuter hell will soon include 'one card to rule them all'

Mage
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Black Helicopters

I'd bet it will be flawed.

It will occasionally crash so you can't travel at all.

It will be hacked.

It will erode privacy.

Because it's not optical contactless nefarious 3rd parties will be able to monitor you or worse.

I'd use a combination of optical code and NF wireless tech and store only an ID on it split between optical code and NFC. That ID would log you in to database which would only store salted hashes of the ID. Ok you can still be tracked by the system owner, but not by 3rd parties and there would be nothing much to hack other than normal secure server.

But what do I know? I'm not a Taxpayer funded incubator with an expensively chosen name.

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Blame WWI, not Bin Laden, for NSA's post-9/11 intel suck

Mage
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Re: it feels like they have been with us forever - endless war

Eventually though the CapCom alliance will be facing off against the rest. Putin is temporary.

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Mage
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Re: Not only the US mate

Some say She invented the Police State concept.

Much later Churchill was perhaps first to see value of international data hoovering. He set up an procedure to have copies of ALL international Telegraph traffic, perhaps even before WWI. See also Room 40 codebreaking (from 1914).

"When Churchill was made First Lord of the Admiralty in 1911 he was already deeply concerned about German militarism, in particular Kaiser Wilhelm's determination to build a powerful navy. Germany had never been much of a seafaring nation and the Kaiser's plans seemed to represent something more sinister than battleship envy."

"Room 40 played an important role in several naval engagements during the war, notably in detecting major German sorties into the North Sea that led to the battles of Dogger Bank and Jutland as the British fleet was sent out to intercept them. However its most important contribution was probably in decrypting the Zimmermann Telegram, a telegram from the German Foreign Office sent via Washington to its ambassador Heinrich von Eckardt in Mexico.

This interception had been made possible a few hours after Britain entered the war by the cable ship Alert (though often incorrectly attributed to the Telconia), which stood off the German coast and cut the five telegraph cables connecting Germany with Spain, Tenerife and New York"

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Google in talks to nail Virgin as 'partner' in satellite internet plan

Mage
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Re: Hmm. Already happening

Rhetorical question I suppose.

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Mage
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Hmm. Already happening

Like Astra's OB3, but using a new launcher.

Eutelsat is sceptical about OB3, but then Astra is their biggest competitor, so they would say that.

I guess Virgin Galactic has more publicity value than Astra.

http://www.ses.com/15513897/o3b-networks-first-launch

http://www.satellitetoday.com/telecom/2014/01/29/o3b-completes-successful-live-test-of-broadband-on-4glte-networks/

Capacity (Cap) will be low once subscribers are added. Internet access, but not real Broadband.

I wonder what the "catch" will be? Google isn't altruistic at all. They must see money in this.

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LEAKED: Redmond not allowed to sell 'Nokia' smartphones after 2015

Mage
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Bear in Woods etc.

We knew this, but perhaps not exact details.

MS has paid a lot for something Nokia wanted to dump.

Nokia still exists. Who knows what they will do next?

Paper

Welly boots

TVs

Sat Boxes

Computers

Phones

They still do Network Infrastructure.

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Psst. We've got 400Gb/s Ethernet working - but don't tell anyone

Mage
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Facepalm

Mobile Fantasy

"mobile phone networks that will want to stream large numbers of 4K video streams to subscribers"

There is no mobile tech than can stream more than approximately ONE 4K stream on a Mast sector, and that needs largest size channel and perfect signal. Typically you only need 400Mbps (peak) for a multi-sector mast with 20MHz channels. Most masts will struggle to use up 100Mbps of backhaul peak. The Headline Mobile speeds are frequently on very unlikely configurations and 1 user. Probably 1Gbps backhaul "future proofs" a mast.

HFC (DOCSIS 3.0 cable cabinet fibre fed), VDSL, FTTx etc benefit from this. Mobile not at all.

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Sealed with an XSS: I gave TweetDeck a heart attack, says teen comp sci boff Firo

Mage
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Mushroom

BBC

They are breaking their charter because they constantly promote the Proprietary, pointless and COMMERCIAL 3rd party Facebook and Twitter.

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MIGHTY SOLAR FLARES fail to DESTROY CIVILISATION. Yes!

Mage
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Re: Stone Age?

No Satellite TV would also be possible outcome.

Or GPS (nothing like as high, so much less vulnerable).

or any other Satellite based service if the Belch is bad enough.

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Stephen Fry MADNESS: 'New domain names GENERATE NEW IP NUMBERS'

Mage
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Ansible etc

IPv6

two problems:

1) It's badly designed, that's why a slow uptake.

2) When we figure how to make Ansibles the IPV6 space isn't big enough.

3) It's nothing like near infinite if it does become as ubiquitous as Bluetooth or 3.5mm jackplugs. What if Apple gives 2 x IPV6 to every Beats headphone? (One for each ear).

P.S.

Is Stephen Fry "clever" at all? Or just a pleasant Actor. Hint, he is only Acting the part of Jeeves.

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'CAPTAIN CYBORG': The wild-eyed prof behind 'machines have become human' claims

Mage
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Pint

Re: Was the Turing test supposed to be a real test?

Best put comment I've ever read on Turing Test and AI.

Have a beer or liquid refreshment of your choice.

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Mage
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Re: Not Turing's finest hour

Also it may be like a Program able to play Chess, that passing the Turing test can be solved without any recourse to AI.

You know how Google Translate works compared to how people tried to build machine translation for 30+ years? A big rossetta stone and search. Not clever parsing and grammar.

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Microsoft poised to take Web server crown from Apache

Mage
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Re: "Microsoft poised to take Web server crown from Apache"

Interestingly though we found the "AMP" parts of LAMP easy to install on Win2K server and Win2003 server and ran Linux PHP apps unchanged. Easier than IIS + MSSQL.

Obviously this is a nonsense metric. Only "real" web sites not part funded by Microsoft count.

Companies with Sharepoint / Exchange are not representative either as they are locked into MS forever (effectively, in reality it's possible to switch) and often get special volume discounts.

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Apple is KILLING OFF BONKING, cries mobe research dude

Mage
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No thanks for NFC

Credit & Debit cards already have NFC, Lidl accepts NFC Debit cards.

But it's an inherently less secure tech than sticking the card in the slot. Almost no advantage.

NFC on a phone is even sillier.

NFC is good for Warehouse pallets. Which it was invented for. Stupid for payments and individual products (barcodes are far cheaper and more privacy secure in the retail context ).

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Facebook's new self-destructing pic app SELF-DESTRUCTS

Mage
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Delusional

Snap it with another phone.

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EU privacy A-Team tells Google: Get a grip and obey OUR laws

Mage
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Re: Oh Thank You Rubbish EU

Nothing to do with EU. You must be reading Daily Mail or UKIP press releases.

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Ukrainian teen created in lab passes Turing Test – famous nutty prof

Mage
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Headmaster

Re: Language skills?

As well as that doubt was cast on the concept of Touring test YEARS ago when Eliza was written. Given the quality of Reality TV and Soaps you need an expert.

IMO even when the "The Touring Test" can be passed well enough fool experts, it doesn't mean anything about progress on AI, just progress on simulation of conversation. Just like Chess was thought to need AI and Alan Turing himself proved it didn't.

I think anyway Alan Turing's comment was an off the cuff statement rather than anything with any mathematical proof, unlike his paper about solvable & unsolvable problems illustrated with the infinite paper tape driven computer. ("Turing Machine").

Of course Kevin Warwick involved makes one think it may be ill-informed hype.

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The Strippers, Unicorn Computers and Martian Watches of Computex

Mage
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Re: Doomed?

Yes, because Wireless Charging is an expensive gimmick. It needs a power supply and cable. Not hard to plug cable directly or have a speaker + keyboard charging dock.

Wireless Charging is an expensive low functionality wireless dock. It's in reality no more wireless than a Cordless kettle.

Also if travelling a "Wireless" Charger is more bulky to carry than an ordinary USB or jack based charger. I wish Phone and Kindle had 2.5mm jack as well as USB as a Charging option.

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FIGHT! Intel disputes ARM's claims of Android superiority

Mage
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Re: Superior?

Not particularly if you compare Like with Like running Native code. The Problem with MIPS and Alpha (in NT3.5 / NT 4.0) was lack of native versions and also the x86 only Win3.x and Win9x were the main MS OS then. NT3.5 and NT3.51 rarely used other than servers. NT4.0 started to see much higher Workstation penetration but hampered by MS and Channel promoting Win9x to Business (It originally was really meant to be Home Gaming OS). Win9x even killed the Pentium Pro which ran NT4.0 great but was a pig on Win9x because so much of it was really 16 bit Win3.1 with Explorer Shell.

The Pentium Pro even outperformed the later PII running Win98 or NT4.0 if running NT4.0 and 32bit applications. The cost of RAM also help kill the Pentium Pro too.

SPARC or MIPS or PowerPC etc have been Niche products for years now. Even routers and Set-boxes rarely use MIPS now, that was last major market for MIPS. Apple abandoned Power PC 10 years ago? Oracle doesn't care about SPARC.

Of course no-one will make a tablet with SPARC or MIPS or PowerPC unless a new insanely cheap SoC version of those is released for a Tablet.

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Mage
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Re: I am so sick of Intel's whining about ARM versus Atom or CISC whatever

Intel still has an ARM licence.

It's not at all about Licence fees but Ego and Margin.

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Mage
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Facepalm

Re: Mobile Soc

They did already.

"I hope intel make a mobile ARM SoC using their best technology soon."

Fixed it for you.

Intel have made ARM.

They didn't sell all ARM to Marvell

They had a great RISC of their own design (i960)

They have an ARM Licence.

Their biggest assets are not x86 and Itanium etc but Process Technology, Marketing and Industry relationships. So it's pure stupid ego that they don't make an ARM Soc. It would add some genuine competition and we would then get better stuff from AMD, Qualcomm, Samsung etc.

x86 due to marketing clout and "PC Compatibility" killed off "better" CPUs such as 680xx series, PowerPC, MIPS, Alpha and Alpha64, Sparc etc.

Now we don't so much need legacy x86 Compatibily as Win 8.x isn't that compatible compared with XP, which unlike previous MS OS which went past "Sell by" and "Use By" has been publicly "hung drawn and quartered".

So a good time for Intel to put their might behind ARM instead of polishing the T**d

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Londoners urged to cut landlines and take up wireless broadband

Mage
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Purely Anectodal

Some people will be lucky and have good signal and underused masts. You want to hope Three doesn't notice or they might turn of the mast.

They need more subscribers than that to make a profit. But early days yet for selling 4G. You'll see :(

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Mage
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Dongle replaced by Router.

Available since 2006 / 2007

Even on early 4G (not LTE).

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Mage
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Re: Bonkers. Re: 4g IS Broadband?

No.

Broadband has a minimum Mbps speed (different countries define the minimum differently). Minimum of 4G is about 0.25Mbps

Broadband is "Always On". Like ISDN, 3G HSPA and 4G LTE "connect on demand". Getting an inward connection may be impossible. Getting an outgoing connection may be impossible.

Ability of 4G to connect depends on how many users already connected. So without moving it may drop a connection or fail to connect.

Broadband is low latency. Mobile Latency can be x10 higher if congested.

Broadband the contention is number of subscribers signed up to a cable or on an exchange vs bandwidth of backhaul (or number of Cable DOCSIS channels and Backhaul). It's totally controlled and can be low. On 3G and 4G the only contention control are anti-congestion measures such as Cap or refusing a connection. You can't know how many users will be on a Cell / Mast /Sector.

Both 3G, 4G and any future 5G are "Midband". Sometimes you can get (entry level) Broadband speed and Latency. No reliability at all and no assurance of a sensible minimum speed, maximum latency or even a connection!

http://www.techtir.ie/forums/internet-faq

DSL depends on distance from Exchange and Backhaul. What ever you get is predicatable.

http://www.techtir.ie/comms/dsl-limits

Mobile vs poor DSL

http://www.techtir.ie/comms/mobile-vs-fixed

http://www.techtir.ie/3g-lies-continue

Fixed Wireless, unlike Mobile can have controlled contention. Because it uses professionally installed outdoor "aerials" (often on chimney) it can often be SIXTEEN times more efficient in use of Spectrum. It also usually has hugely more spectrum per mast than Mobile (but not always). It (not Satellite or Mobile) is the best solution for Isolated UK / European rural users. Not appropriate for Urban or Suburban where now Cable TV / DOCSIS HFC systems, FTTC or FTTH are CHEAPER per user than Mobile or DSL or Fixed Wireless. Also greener with lower power consumption per user.

Fixed Wireless Beats Mobile & Satellite

http://www.techtir.ie/comms/fixed-wireless-broadband-better

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Mage
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"Up to Speeds" meaningless

Only the minimum speeds and % time connection available counts.

"Up to Speeds" mean only one user and perfect signal.

This Compare Mobile & Fixed illustrates how pathetic 3G HSPA and 4G really are.

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Mage
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Bonkers.

Wireless simply doesn't have capacity for high numbers of concurrent users. So if congestion and contention isn't to make ISDN look attractive you need low caps to limit time users are on. Still makes peak times rubbish.

4G isn't Broadband and never will be as it's uneconomic to have every 3rd street lamp a Femto cell, which is what would be needed. Every street would need high capacity fibre, so FTTC (x10 speed) or FTTH (x100 speed at peak times, no Cap) would be cheaper.

This is marketing. Not a viable majority user replacement for real broadband. The sums say so.

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Fed-up bloke takes email spammers to court – and WINS PILE of CASH

Mage
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Others breaking the law

Adverts.ie

Bewleys

Digitalspy.co.uk

Oracle (UK Office)

Tesco

TVTrade.ie

Well known Asian Companies that spam if you buy:

Dynamic Trading Co

NewFrog

Random USA or Asian or Russian spammers are one thing. Reputable UK / Ireland and other EU companies have no excuse for this.

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Protecting code's secrets wins ACM prize

Mage
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Pint

Arrrgh My eyes

You owe me for a doctor and optician's visits now!

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You've got two weeks to beat off Cryptolocker, GameoverZeus nasties

Mage
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Re: Clicking links ...

How?

Some QR apps just load the destination without a confirmatory URL display.

The QR code may be a link shortening service.

Most users get Malware because they always click on "OK" on dialog boxes.

I agree one should be able to click on anything safely. But today you can't. If a link doesn't have expected domain for the context the likely situation is that it leads to evil. So I don't Click.

Number of virus infections / Trojans etc on my own computers since 1979 = Zero.

I do check with specialist tools that I'm as clean as I think.

one good one is at silentrunners.org

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Mage
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Re: One way of increasing Windows 8

So is 32bit NT3.xx and 16 bit windows before Win9.x safe then? Or NT4.0?

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Mage
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Re: Clicking links ...

QR codes as implemented currently are even more stupid than Link Shortening Services. I like at least to know the domain.

I'm very tempted to print fake ones (but harmless) for Tesco's veggie dept.

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Broadcom: If no one buys our modem biz, we'll DITCH IT

Mage
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Re: No Point

Likely all IP is transferred to Mothership and isn't included. Which would explain why it won't sell.

Qualcomm has bought many smaller companies and shuttered them. Basically to strengthen IP portfolio.

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The enemy of my enemy is my, well, temporary ally: Apple and Microsoft in pact against Google

Mage
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Re: Next on Surface

Exactly what I was alluding to. Perhaps few of today's Commentards had an Apple II. I had one before my ACT Sirius 1 and IBM PC.

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Mage
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Next on Surface

Sound by Beats.

Hmm.. Apple Corp. founded by Beatles. with an Apple based logo.

The Steves like Beatles so use a colored Apple logo and Apple Computer as company.

Twice Apple gets sued (and loses) by Beatles.

I have an image in my head of a Kafkaesque giant Beetle munching an Apple while listening to Hip Hop and Rap on giant Headphones.

Microsoft saved Apple once with real money.

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Apple: We'll tailor Swift to be a fast new programming language

Mage
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Re: Just what the world needs

And C# is really MS concept of Java, derived from J++

It's not that bad and does have Mono to run it outside .Net

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Supreme Court nixes idea of 'indirect' patent infringement

Mage
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Re: The patent

The patent itself in this should be struck out. There should be NO patents for Business processes, mathematics or software (Copyright covers software).

Patents should be:

Novel.

Not obvious to anyone versed in the art.

No very similar prior art. Should not have to be identical.

For something that a "prototype" can be made. i.e. an "Invention".

So for example RCA superhet patent should have been invalid and later F.M. as these both quickly became obvious to experts in Radio versed in Mathematics and in both cases had even been demonstrated elsewhere.

Edison's attempt to have a monopoly on Movie film was eventually stopped but that took over 10 years! Crazy.

The US Patent system has been "broken" since Victorian era and is getting worse.

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YOSEMITE GLAM: Apple unveils gussied up OS X

Mage
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Explain?

"with more of an emphasis on desktop backgrounds."

Why do I want the background?

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HP reveals Apple-powered Android 'SlateBook'

Mage
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Partner?

There is no need to "partner" with anyone. No Sound or audio company can make stock 2" or 1" x 3" laptop speakers in a skinny cabinet sound better.

Some companies make genuinely good headphones. Some companies make decent loudspeakers, usually at least in an MDF or Chipboard box and more than 4". No-one can do much sensible with speakers in current style constrained laptops, notebooks or tablets.

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Mage
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HP totally have lost plot?

Unless Beats is paying them why would HP have been inserting this "snake oil"? "Beats" audio as a "feature" would put me off a purchase.

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Google to plonk tentacles on 'unwired' world with $1bn launch of 180-satellite fleet

Mage
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Black Helicopters

Unlike the Balloons and Drones this sort of works.

But is it Geo (high latency!!!!) or LEO?

Also one small roadside fibre cabinet has more capacity than the high capacity 82 Spot Ka-Sat, the highest capacity at the time.

Devil in detail.

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Quantum teleportation gets reliable at Delft

Mage
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Star Trek Transporter

I have no wish to die and then have a facsimile reassembled from transmitted data.

Assuming that

A) It's possible to "scan" someone entirely

B) Possible to store/transmit that amount of data

C) Possible to turn the Energy / Data back into original constituents.

This concept of "transportation" is nothing to do with Star Trek's concept, which may be inherently impossible. Which may have been "invented" due to lack of budget for Shuttle, or lazy scriptwriting. Just because something seems cool on TV doesn't mean it's ever possible. I'd sooner believe a "Star ship" is possible.

It's not clear how you actually use entanglement / Quantum Transportation to do any useful information transmission, in the "Ansible" sense.

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Crikey! Three can buy O2, EU regulator says

Mage
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Unhappy

Investment and Management

The EU examination was on too narrow competition grounds.

It will be a more poorly managed network (Three outsources EVERYTHING technical with no apparent "reality tests"). There will be less coverage and lower capacity as masts are closed to maximise profit vs operating costs.

It would be better if Three sold Irish operation to Liberty (UPC). That though would SERIOUSLY upset Meteor (Eircom) and Vodafone though!

I'm not entirely sure exactly what Vodafone is worried about unless it's UPC/Liberty MVO / MVNO involvement which is actually the one aspect they can't officially complain about.

I'd have rather seen Telefonica (O2) buy out Three.

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