* Posts by Craig Collier

38 posts • joined 15 Mar 2007

Half of UK road users support usage-based road charging

Craig Collier
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In other news....

....almost half of all Road Users are opposed to usage-based road charging

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Beeb deploys ISS as unit of measurement

Craig Collier
Stop

dear oh dear

Laughing royally at all of you typing out the maths.. the point of this articel surely is that instead of giving some silly comparison, the Beeb are actually insulting our intelligence, by thinking that we need to know how much $1.1bn is when stacked up in $1 coins.

I for one know how much $1.1bn is... it's $1.1bn

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Man hooks home into Twitter

Craig Collier

misdirected ambition

why not just email himself, write to a log or sms to hsi phone, why go the the lengths of twittering your house's activities to the world?

As if hearing about what the world + dog are doing at 11.20am on the toilet isn't enough

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BT cuts phone charges for prisoners

Craig Collier
Stop

Not being funny but....

They are prisoners - it should cost them MORE than it does for us, because we HAVEN'T broken the law, and are citizens who should be entitled to BENEFITS for not being criminals.

Don't want to take this too far, but really, i don't care if "those who have consistent contact with family are less likely to re-offend".

Consider this:

I am less likely to offend AT ALL, if you make MY life cheaper and make prison life less appealing, i.e. MORE expensive, MORE prohibitive, and MORE money consuming. If by going to prison i would be completely financially ruined, much like some people i know who aren't criminals, then i would certainly NEVER offend, no matter how big the carrot being dangled in front of me. Who cares if they have no money, that's their own fault.

/end rant

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Dell cooks up all-in-one PC treat

Craig Collier

done aready

thats almost identical to the machine i have in my kitchen already, only this one is all in one piece. same idea though, 19" widescreen, dual core, HD acceleration and wifi.

will there be a linux option? possibly MythBuntu and throw in a DVB-T dongle?

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Twittering Dell coughs to Latitude E4300 delays

Craig Collier
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not so here....

We have three E4300's ordered sometime before december, and have just ordered another, and been told the usual 3 week lead time for it...

no 3 month wait for us it seems :P

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Hands on with Sony's Vaio P netbook

Craig Collier

drool

i want one

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UK e-tailers scurry to scrap dodgy Heavy Metal covers

Craig Collier

dear oh dear

the world has clearly gone absolutely bonkers. i give up.

flibble flibble

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Coming soon: Facebook - The Movie!

Craig Collier

@ dervheid

thats the single best hollywood idea i've heard in years. Reg, where are the story boards and ... wait a minute, our good friend BOFH has already done it, twice, once it ended with the seruptitious burning down of the office building after some mysterious goings on in the pub with the PR rep from Universal, the other time, well, the less said about A list actors after a couple of the Old Crowns finest the better. Their lawyers know to stay away.

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US Wi-Fi piggybacking won't put you in pokey

Craig Collier

@ Mr Seagal

Yes, you have the point exactly, and someone else stated above, and herein lies the problem.

People don;t know what they're using, what they've bought or what its for and how important it is. A £3000 laptop is just as useless as a £300 desktop to people who don;'t know what a 802.11 draft n wireless USB dongle is, or people who go to PC World or Curry's to buy their computers.

Someone hit the nail on the head earlier, in that it should be the responsibility of the hardware company to enable security by default, and have clearer instructions on how to get the thing working. Too many wireless network setups involve pressing a button to match the MAC address, and other fiddly settings, which if failed three or four times the user just gives up and leaves it unsecured. This isn't intent, this is naiivety, and misunderstanding, cos on the BOX it says secured, so it must be right?

once we get to the point where WiFi is everywhere, and being on a local LAN means nothign more than being connected to the internet as a whole, then these laws won't even exist anymore, but until then, we're stuck.

Remember your average person needs a calculator to know what 6x9 is. With those people buying computers and wireless gear, is it any surprise that everyone leaves their security settings untouched and expect it to be fine?

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Apple on the lookout for one million unlocked iPhones

Craig Collier

and it continues...

theres a simple answer to all this, get a decent phone.

this is like a mercedes car, some people can afford it, and fine, if you want to spend £30,000 on something to get to work fine. I'd prefer to pay £400 for my car, and spend the rest on having a fulfilling life, similarly, an iphone does nto make you happy. Cheap phone bills do however, so i'm sticking with whatever the UK carriers are prepared to ive me for free. Most of the time, thats a fully functional unlocked phone with 3G, replaceable battery and upgradeable storage.

seriously, why is everyone getting so upset about this? nobody is slagging off ferrari for making expensive cars now are they?

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Apple MacBook Air

Craig Collier
Jobs Horns

who is the tool doing this video?

just sucking up to apple guys, "ah yeah thats really, cool, £1200, very impressive"

no it isn't, thats extersionate. Sorry, but this guy doesn't seem like someone who should be reviewing these kind of things if no critical analysis is bothered to be thrown in. Free ticket, possiblity of a free Macbook Air if he says its beautiful on camera?

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Tarantino plans Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! remake

Craig Collier
Go

oh yes

Britney spears, shaven head, samurai swords, tarantino, girls, killing, blood prostitutes.

don't know about anyone else, but this sounds like the best thing ever!!

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Paramount puts down HD DVD dump rumour

Craig Collier

the plot thickens

I really wasn't expecting Blu-Ray to win this. I fully understand and appreciate that it is the superior format, cost aside, but i really expected the lower production costs and ultimately, the more familiar and instantly recognisable name (HD-DVD vs BD) to win over consumers who don;'t read the small prints, but in the end, this one has worked out well, and the rumoured announcement that Microsoft may adopt Blu-Ray for Xbox 360s in the future surely is the nail in the coffin on this one.

Dual format wars were never going to end nicely, and someone was always going to lose out, in this case, i can safely say i'm pleased with bthe results, and look forward to buying a BD player when funds allow.

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Orange France says 'testicules' to unlocked-iPhone-not-unlocked claim

Craig Collier

3G on 3

Yup - above is correct, three are the only 3G-only carrier in the UK (afaik) and only 3G phones will accept their simcards.

these days thats pretty much everything except the iPhone.

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Nvidia 'nveils nForce 7 chipsets

Craig Collier

2 PCIe 2 and 1 PCIe 1.1

Taken from http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2007/12/17/first_look_nvidia_nforce_780i_sli/1

"The third x16 slot is actually full x16 this time around but is only PCI-Express Gen-1.1. While this offers an unbalanced bandwidth and latency difference (because it's connected to the south bridge) at best for 3-way SLI, Nvidia doesn't seem too concerned about this because most of the data in 3-way is passed over the new 3-way SLI connector. When asked, Nvidia also said that PCI-Express 2.0 is just an incremental update and provides only a one or two percent performance difference at best. Most users that do require the third x16 link will only need it for more mundane things like hardware RAID controllers etc, and for that job, it's perfectly suited."

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Gamer takes Microsoft to court over Halo 3 'errors'

Craig Collier
Gates Halo

just wanted to show my love

For the man, the legend, the money-making mogul of moguls that is Mr Gates.

Another fine product on his hands here, no probs as far as i can see.

Yeah right, (Enter anonymous Linux/Mac/PS3/OSS fanbois comment here).

:P

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Conservatives cock-up over pound again

Craig Collier

oowwww not fair :(

I had it on my screen, laughing heartily, send a link round the office, then wham, it's taken down. I refreshed my page and lost it, now i'm searching through HTML cache to try and find it, but i think i've lost it all - if anyone knows how to retrieve it, please post up - it was on my screen before i refreshed the page.

Quite possibly the funniest slur on conservatism i've ever read.

All hail the power of El Reg!!!

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Maddy: TV torture for the ADD generation

Craig Collier

i heartily agree...

Brilliant pice, well written from the right perspective i think.

"What I find most bizarre of all is how the McCann's themselves seem to have not just encouraged, but orchestrated this whole media frenzy."

just about sums it up, as above, this may be to cover up their guilt, or to try and compensate in their search for their daughter, to be honest though, i really don;'t care, and i stopped caring about 5 minutes after i first heard that lots of Portuguese kids have gone missing since Madeleine, and none of those have been found either.

Why should we care more about this one child when thousands of people around the world are in much worse situations than this, the media circus just fuels their fire.

anyway, i got more important things to do... :)

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AMD finally goes native with Barcelona

Craig Collier

oh dear oh dear

"I reall thought that AMD were going to put up a fight. Instead they release a part that's about 70% as fast as the one I got in my Mac 6 months ago."

classic mac-user comment. Loving it.

Raw clock speed, does not determine actual processing power, the point is, that these chips can acheive a lot more at the same speeds as intel's chips, just as the Core 2 Duo could achieve a lot more at the same speeds than the previous king, AMD's K8 (Windsor/Brisbane era)

don't mean to be funny, buyt go back to your double mocha and ipod touch and forget the real workd of technology, steve jobs designed it for you so you don;'t have to think, so don't try, it just embarrasses other mac users.

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Slave kids working UK cannabis farms

Craig Collier

this is really quite worrying

Person at the top - deport - please, have some humility.

These people, in a very similar sense to child prostitution, and even adult prostitution, are exploited by a few people who care not for anything but money.

They are the ones who need to be deported not these kids. If these reports can be trusted, the children mentioned DO need help and support, to rebuild their lives by the sound of things, if that involves getting them back in touch with their families so be it: the term slave does seem fairly appropriate.

This kinda makes you wonder, if this is happening in the UK, where we all are lead to believe that everything is fine and rosy, and for the most part it is, what happens in Vietnam, where these people are from, where there isn't a proper infrastructure like ours and regulations on working hous and suchlike? How many other countries round the world where slavery is officially obolished to these practices remain rife?

finally, what can we do about it? Not buying or smoking weed certainly isnt going to help, maybe grow it ourselves?

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Facebook moves to cut down application annoyances

Craig Collier

about bloomin time

nuff said. Whats wrong with being able to say hello to your friends without knowing whether they like pirates and ninjas?

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Designer breaks up trad PC design

Craig Collier

Oi you lot, read again, look at the pictures.

Each individual unit does NOT need its own power supply,. that woudl kinda defeat the object here would it not?

Each unit plugs into the next, so the last one plugs into the wall, and all the others just slot into the front of that.

This is a really neat idea, and along with the ASUS idea mentioned above, is my idea of the future of computing. One day, there will be no CPU or GPU - each 'screen' or terminal thin client will just wireless connect to the main computer in each house/street/town even... its along way off, but distributed processing (if i can call it that) with multiple cores and platforms seems to be the way it'll work.

One day we'll laugh that we sat here with everything connected by wires and actually pressing keys on a qwerty keyboard!!!

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Pipex invites customer to get 'c**ted'

Craig Collier

RE: Hang On

"..if the address bar, the bit with 'https:' in it, isn't a yellowy colour, as it is on my mac when viewing a secure page, doesn't that mean that in this case the page is likely just a bit of rewritten html, with the contributor typing in the address him/herself to give the false appearance of an actual web location? Forgive me if I'm mistaken there."

No, that just means that he's not using a browser that makes the address bar yellow when viewing an https page. Not all of us non-mac users need this helping hand when carrying out our day-to-day web surfing.

Aside from the wee dig there, sorry bout that, but you were screaming out for it, any posted screenshot could be a fake, whether its got a yellow address bar or not.

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'Portable' CD player puts MP3 into a spin

Craig Collier

Brilliant

For an early devlopment design, its brilliant.

Few thigns it needs to be come usable tho, some sort of sheath, i.e., you insert the cd while closed, and then instead of just openning up a little bit, the two sides would fold all the way round the CD enclosing it in some sort of concertina-style casing - or somethign like that.

I definitely want one - and if it ripped CDs to mp3s, then it wouldn't even need redesigning.

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BBC iPlayer finally hits the streets

Craig Collier

Why is everyone whining so much?

Come on, somethign ridculous like 98% of all PCs run windows, so BBC should spend the same money on developing a Linux client as they do a windows client, even if the Linux client will only ever be used by geeks who want to scorn it because it wont be open source?

What about TV, you say everyone is free to get these services, but you have to pay a company like Samsung or Sony to get a TV in the first plac,e are the BBC favouring electronics companies over non-electronics comanies becasue you dont need a sofa to watch tv? No

Get over it, this is broadcasting. DAB has been aorund for ages, and hardly anyone uses it, not because its windows only or non-linux-friendly, but becasue it sblomin expensive. Channel 4's 4OD service only runs on windows XP too - why isnt anyone moaning about that?

ffs grow up.

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TorrentSpy filters pirated videos

Craig Collier

RE: Bittorrent

Yup - you're right, thats exactly what i use Bittorrent for, some shows are just not on british TV. Things like 24, south park, Trailer Park Boys, Sopranos, all shows that will get here eventually, but will involve me getting sky, just to watch them, and i am not doing that, as the guy above me says, downloading is often quicker and easier than going to the shop, dealing with the PFY behind the counter and then driving home - compared to choosing a few films, downloading them, watching them, then deleting them. Music is slightly different, i spend an absolute fortune on vinyl, but i will never pay for an MP3 that means i can't play it more then a few times, or forces me to use JobsTunes (sorry - iTunes) instead of whatever player I want to use, no chance. I download copies of tracks i've bought using soulseek or bittorrent, because they come unprotected, and i can put them on my laptop, my phone, my desktop and also the file server in the living room. DRM woudl prevent me from actually doing this with music that i've actually paid for. WTF?

Like above, i'm not providing excuses for downloading copied music, but i am trying to show why people do it, because the alternative is actually more difficult and prohibitive than breaking the law.

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Mobile internet set for take-off?

Craig Collier

User error

The problem is, that most people don't understand how to use the internet on their PCs, let alone understand how it woudl work on their phones.

And education on either of these won't help. Some people just don;'t want to learn, they don't care baout technology, they just want a sexy phone they can show off and a few free texts a month.

I use the 3 £5 a month X-series contract for unlimited internet (i suspect there's a cap on this unlimited offer though) and it means that i, who can spend time working out what to do, now can get my emails and MSN messenger on my phone wherever i am. I had to do it myself though, and it wasn't easy, but then it isn't any easier on a PC< its just that we're used to that.

I say leave it as it is, charge those who want to pay, and for the few of us who actually use it, the service will just get better and better.

Google is leading the charge here though, hotmail is at best unusable on a phone browser, so google just release a small java app that handles email on and offline, so simple, so usable. If google ever release their own phone, it will be the one-stop shop for everythign you need, i suspect they're holding off until they can offer everythign they want to rather than the half baked efforts of other competitors.

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Pfizer worker data leaked via P2P

Craig Collier

Yeah right blame filesharing

THats like saying that if he had written them down on a bit of paper and left it in a bus shelter, its the paper and pen's fault.

No, the guy broke company rules to install the software (presumably Soulseek or soemthing similar) and also was num-nut enough to share a directory containing sensitive information.

Sack the guy - its his fault, not P2Ps, he shouldn't be allowed access to such information if he can't look after it. End of story.

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Orange simplifies data by capping at 30MB

Craig Collier

this does indeed suck

I totally agree with the comments above.

I'm on 3, and just signed up for the X-Series unlimited internet for £5 a month. I really won't use the data on my phone for anything other than gmail and msn, perhaps a bit of browsing for train times etc, and i guess thats what they want us to use it for. To be honest, at the kind of speeds you get over GPRS/3G (around 100kbps on average) it's gonna take a lot to hit these limits anyway.

Do people really spend that much time staring at a 2" screen, when for £20 a month you get unlimited downloads on a real broadband connection?

a step in the right direction, but false advertising for sure.

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F1 engineers plan appeal in Ferrari espionage case

Craig Collier

what those guys said ^^^

need i say more.. :)

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AMD Radeon HD 2900 XTX tested on web

Craig Collier

nvidia owns everyone

i'm actually very surprised at these results. If they do in fact reveal a near enough picture of how it will perform, then AMD has a problem on its hands.

With 320 unified shader thingamebobs, compared to the 128 on the 8800- and the higher clock speeds to the nvidian core, it seems that the R600 really isn't all that...

I'm an nvidia fan through and through, and it will take a lot for me to switch - this isn't enough if these benches are anything to go by.

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Google glitch loses user data

Craig Collier

its back now

well as far as i can see there has beena change/revamp - now the RSS feeds get put into nice little boxes - and it did remember my settings, so i'm not too peeved.

I use it for saving links etc between the three or four computers i use, along with google browser sync. I think i need to start trusting someone else though, if i lose my gmail - i'll be stuffed.

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And the centre of your desktop is...

Craig Collier

interesting results...

Nice analysis too, but what seems to be the case - and speaking as a helpdesk operative myself, is not that there's a failed adoption of other applications such as openoffice or firefox etc, but that general users are not given the option, neither do they even know that other options exist.

Seriously, ask your average company Operations Manager endowed with company car and company laptop to 'fire up a web browser' and rarely will you find someone who even know what you mean. Its not that its not central to their operation, but they refer to it as 'data warehouse isn't working' when in actual fact their proxy settings or home page are set incorrectly, they have no idea that the 'application' they are using is indeed a web page in a web browser.

Microsoft, bless em, have come a long way in helping to make our jobs difficult in this way by dumbing down their error messages and keeping users blissfully unaware of how technologically potent their computers are, but in reality, without that kind of kindergarten push, people would be just as confused as your average 'power user' is when faced with a more advanced desktop OS like Linux, where there are no kiddie steps or helping hands.

All in all though, do we really want this to change? I always try to judge the intelligence level of my users as they call me, when someone tells me they 'can't get on to email' when their dial up password has expired, or they're typing with caps lock on, there's no point in any education, but when someone offers you their IP address early on in order for you to look into their problem, or even goes so far as to tell you whats wrong, but says they dont have access to change the settings, your symapthy goes out to them, as you know that one day they may in fact end up being on my side of the phones helping hapless users out themselves.

Just my take on things. For the record, the web browser, or more specifically Firefox, with a little extension known as IE Tab for those stubborn in house apps developed for IE only, is my most central application, and it even serves as my portal to email via Gmail and Outlook Web Access.

This raises one question we all chuckle about down here....

Do you think Bill Gates uses Outlook, or does he really just use Gmail like the rest of us?

Cheers guys, keep up the good work

Craig

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WEP key wireless cracking made easy

Craig Collier

Really, who cares?

at work mayeb, but even if my neighbours COULD get in to our wireless network, what on earth would they want out of it? I guess if they have a mythtv frontend on a linux box they could steal our tv, but then we do have two tuners, so we probably wouldn't notice :)

i COULD break into a ford fiesta in two minutes, and that takes a lot less than a laptop and procesing power. A simple brick and crowbar will do that, and you can buy those anywhere.

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Glastonbury online ticket sales fiasco

Craig Collier

Fiasco indeed

I can't belive the b*llsh*t that i have been through for this.

I woke on sunday with the mother of all hangovers, with my little bro on the phone asking me for my bank details. He had got through, but there were no real tickets, only coach tickets, and not from birmingham - where i live - but from gloucester.

I obliged, extra £30 just to make him go away so i coudl go back to sleep - and it went through, all ok.

So i thought.

9 days later (READ: twice as long as it takes for a checque to clear in this country) i get an email saying that funds have not cleared no specific reason, and a link that when clicked dubiously filled my details in and asked me for £60 - with a note saying this is for the outstanding amounts ONLY.

WTF? Ok, so two tickets, @ £150 + 2 coach tickets @ £30 + £4 booking fee is £364, not £60???

I had heard that the coach tickets were inseperable from the main festy tickets, and i woudl not be able to pick up my festival ticket until half way through the coach journey, to ensure i dont mess up the local's 'park-in-a-field-for-a-tenner' policy this year. But no - its taken 9 days, and they have decided that they woudl take the £300 for the festival tickets, and fail the payment for some fraud reason, and tell me the funds havent cleared?

Having spoken to someone on the phone, i am still non-plussed about the whole fiasco, and 9 days after 'paying for my ticket' i still dont know if i have 'paid for my ticket'

If the £60 doesn't go through, what are they gonna do? charge me £300 and NOT let me go by car? WTF?

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Racing games increase real world crashes

Craig Collier

not a fair test

I dont think this is a fair test at all. First up - three driving games chosen are Burnout, Need For Speed and Minight Racer.

None of these are simluation driving games, and two of them actively encourage you to crash into things. Burnout is a fun game to play, it asks you to create as much carnage as possible, and need for speed is about as far away from an emulator as is humanely possible, hit a wall at 150Mph, and the resulting speed after colllision becomes 145Mph - real world physics at its best!!

Were they to test some REAL driving games -perhaps GT-2 on the PC- where one slip up or even a slightly off-key line into a corner and youre off into the gravel, or perhaps a more accessible simulator like Gran Turismo. Either way, i dont play the games they tested, i play real driving simulators, and i really think that the skill involved in getting round the hungaroring at an average speed of 140+mph in a race tuned dodge viper gtsr - actually makes me a better driver.

Did any of the testers use manual; or automatic gearboxes, third person view, first person view? Clearly a bogus report, and probably about as useful to real world people as saying that crossing the road is likely to increase your chance of being run over. Stating the obvious gone mad.

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Hauppauge WinTV Nova-TD USB TV tuner

Craig Collier

Isn't this 2007?

I have a REALLY old BT878 analogue hauppage board, and the only software available for it is WinTV2000 - a big pile of ***** in my opinion, compared to other TV apps.

I find it hard to belive that in 2007 - hauppage are still bundling this pile of **** with their tv cards.

A) no widescreen support - despite the fact that BBC and most other freeview channels are broadcast in a 16:9 aspect, you end up with black bars not only at the sides, but at the top and bottom too - hideous

B) My housemate has a Leadtek DTV dongle, bit cheaper than this, and it works a dream, really nice, 21st century-looking app that handles everything seamlessly with support for using other video decoders (such as Nvidia purevideo and ATi AVIVO) somethign hauppage just dont support.

If you are unfortunate enough to buy or be given one of these, use it with MCE, dont use WinTV2000 - its like using an aold black and white tv compared to what we're used to these days, and widescreen? forget it!!!

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