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* Posts by William Gallafent

63 posts • joined 2 Jan 2008

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Trying to sell your house? It'd better have KILLER mobile coverage

William Gallafent

But chances are that if you're in a nice, internet-connected area, there's going to be mobile signal anyway.

Here >20Mb/s downstream, >2Mb/s upstream (ADSL2+ Annexe M), … and no cellular telephone reception! Hence my millicell.

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William Gallafent

So much the better for anybody with even a gram of resourcefulness!

OK, as a prospective purchaser, this is good, since the lack of coverage may be used to reduce the purchase price. One may thus obtain such a dwelling for a lower cost (since the demand is lower, … right?), and then simply install an EE Signal Box or equivalent other femtocell (or whatever they're called these days). These certainly work fine over ADSL2+ on BT 21CN, no DOCSIS 3.0 or VDSL2 required (remember, voice bandwidth is very low). If one is selling the house and wishes to maximise the sale price, simply provide this information to a prospective buyer.

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F1? No, it's Formula E as electric racing cars hit the track

William Gallafent

Re: Are electric cars really usefull?

“Can I do a 680 mile round-trip in one day?” — yes. Range of Tesla Model S with 85kWh battery is 300 miles, and you could easily pick up the necessary extra 40 miles of range in each direction by charging during rest stops. Looks pretty well thought out.

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Apple to flush '£37bn' down the bog if it doesn't flog cheapo slabtops

William Gallafent

Re: ARM vs x86?

“it started life on PowerPC” … or, arguably, on 68000!

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A whopping one in four Apple fanbois uses OBSOLETE TECH

William Gallafent

“I wonder if this adoption rate is assisted by apple devices constantly asking you to update by flagging the little app update icon” … no, the app store one is for updating apps. When there's a system update the red circle nagger appears on System Preferences.

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Firefox reveals new look: rounded rectangles

William Gallafent

Re: Oh brother

Nope, I've seen over 3GB too, quite frequently, and it isn't add-ons (confirmed by exploring the about:memory report). It's really pretty grim, and it gently ramps up. Mine is currently sitting at 1.6GB.

100MB taken up displaying a single PDF. 150MB for a webmail page. One of the real killers though is little buttons for sharing. For example, a freshly opened news story page on this very site consumes 43MB. Only 10MB of that is ascribed to the site itself. 5MB is js-zone (whatever that is … I guess general storage used by the JavaScript engine not for any particular page element … ?). The rest is attributed variously to Google, Facebook, Twitter and Stumbleupon. I plan to get round to preventing these things from loading. That should make a very big difference.

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Your kids' chances of becoming programmers? ZERO

William Gallafent

Big languages with big libraries

“VB.NET, Java, C++, Delphi etc are all big languages with big libraries, making it a waste of time to write your own string-handling or graphics routines. Knowing the name of the right function has become more important than understanding how it works. Own up, could you code DDI or Bresenham’s algorithm without looking them up? How many algos do you actually know? Is that even relevant to your work?”

This echoes something said by Knuth during a lecture I attended. To paraphrase (I hope sufficiently accurately) “I don't want children to learn that writing computer programs involves chaining together calls to functions in libraries that other people wrote” - that “modern” programming tends to be about the basic logical flow through a program - the “control”, never getting to the really /interesting/ bit, the “computation”. (Of course, the “control” bit gets interesting too for larger systems, but at this point it /becomes/ part of “computation” in a sense :)

Of course, you can have both. Modern libraries provide a lot of very useful boilerplate which makes it possible to get to the “interesting” bit more quickly when dealing with real data or real problems. The problem arises when all that the programmer is ever asked to do is to chain together code in which other people had all the fun writing the interesting stuff. That is a very dull life (and learning programming by doing this is dull too). So, the answer is to spend as little time as possible writing computer programs that are easy to write, instead to focus on things which are difficult to achieve*.

*(not, I hasten to add, because there are too many flaws and shortcomings in the environment in which your working … but because the actual problems you're working on are difficult problems!)

Cambridge compsci undergraduates with no programming? Not necessarily a problem. More important I think that they should have good maths and other basic tools to get started. I'd rather take somebody with double maths A-level (and teach them computing, which has maths underneath!) than Computing + another … and try to teach them A-level maths (to show how what they have already been doing actually works) during the degree! :)

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Hey fanboi, is that an EXPLODING BATTERY in your MacBook Pro?

William Gallafent

Re: Not MacBook Pros, not Apple batteries.

Yup. “…these are not Apple batteries” — they are made by a company called BTI. Lesson: next time buy an official Apple part :)

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Air China passenger arrested for in-flight phone abuse

William Gallafent
Black Helicopters

Re: Shame the West isn't as proactive about antisocial phone behaviour.

Well, we've had aircraft since the rennaissance … for some definition of “had” ;) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Design_for_a_Flying_Machine.jpg !

You're right though, we didn't have aeroplanes for most of those events, though we did use them in both world wars, and we didn't for the industrial revolution or the enlightenment … :/

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Thank Freeview for UK 4G by mid-2013 - NOT the iPhone 5 nor EE

William Gallafent
Stop

Re: Wait!

“tmobile has a new download speed cap of 180kbs, uploading is still probaly 60kbs,”

Ermmmmm … ever considered that you might be on the wrong tariff? The most basic boosters (included in many tariffs) certainly used to have some speed caps, which disappear if you pay some money. I pay a fiver a month for more data, so I'm not on the most basic tariff, but only one "click" up from that. Speedtest just now shows 2.61Mb/s downstream, 2.33 up. At quieter times of day it's more like 8 down 4 up. This is on a standard pay-monthly with the "Internet Booster" or whatever it's called. And I have to stand in the right place ;)

T-mobile have never published anywhere what these caps are for each tariff though, which is extremely annoying. Still, as I say, the first-stage booster that I mention does not appear to be speed-capped.

So, go to a T-mobile shop, find somebody who knows what they're talking about (not always easy but the more senior people know their stuff in my experience!) and ask them to tell you which booster you have at the moment and perhaps consider paying a fiver to get a better one.

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Apple hardware fixer Bob Mansfield retires from Cupertino

William Gallafent
Holmes

Re: What >is< a nickel, anyhow?

Sadly, the malaise spreads: the current designs for British small denomination coins no longer say 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 on them either … just One, Two, Five, Ten, Twenty, Fifty. Retrograde. And before people say what's the problem, I say 一, 二, 五, 十, 二十, 五十. It's fairly simple to work it out, but why not simply stick with the conventional symbols that have worked so well for so long?

And when do we get un, dau, pump, deg, ugain, hanner cant?

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Major London problem hits BT broadband across southeast

William Gallafent
Stop

Re: Forget the broadband, BT please fix the grammar

“Do you really think the whole of London is on one exchange and uses the code 020?”

Nobody mentioned exchange's, and nobody suggested that. The dialling code is 020. If I'm calling from the line 020 7123 4567, and I dial 8765 4321, the call will get through to the number 020 8765 4321. If my dialling code is not 020, then I need to use the dialling code 020. There are many more exchanges than three in London, the 7, 8 and 3 correspond broadly to inner London, outer London and "new numbers because we ran out of 7 (or 8) prefix numbers on this exchange. Each exchange provides (I think) numbers that start (020 7 (and sometimes 020 3)) or (020 8 (and sometimes 020 3)). And so on.

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Everything Everywhere pushes towards 4G, wants to show off its wad

William Gallafent
Flame

Speed caps on T-Mobile

I'm all for increasing mobile broadband speeds. The simplest way for T-Mobile to achieve this is to remove the speed caps from their existing tariffs. They are certainly there, and they are certainly not mentioned on the T-Mobile site. I think that wouldn't require very much investment either. Actually stating the speed caps anywhere on their own website (for example, in the terms and conditions / fair usage policy relating to each tariff) would be a start, of course, so that customers could decide how much to pay in order to achieve how much bandwidth rather than being sold “internet on your phone” (or whatever the name is at the moment) which they then find out (if they hunt hard enough on the interwebs) is artificially capped to 384kb/s, 0.9Mb/s or 1.8Mb/s.

I wonder if the same network management approaches will continue. If so, good luck finding out what the speed cap on an LTE connection will be. Expect it to be a lot slower than the actual wireless link can manage, if HSPA is anything to go by.

Here's a short-link to the usual discussion of speed caps on T-Mobile: http://qr.net/stat/hnxp

Long-link for those that don't trust short-links :) http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/discussions/index?page=forums&topic=801019114689730134158c03af039a4

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T-Mobile clams up over Full Monty 'speed-cap' claims

William Gallafent
Facepalm

Missing Word Round

“(potential)” -> “(potential) customers” …

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William Gallafent
Big Brother

Re: They certainly do cap many other tariffs, don't know about tfm …

Here's a shorturl for those that were annoyed by the linebreaks: http://qr.net/hnxp

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William Gallafent
FAIL

They certainly do cap many other tariffs, don't know about tfm …

There's a recent rundown at http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/discussions/index?page=forums&topic=801019114689730134158c03af039a4 of the various different caps applied to their myriad data tariffs. The cap can be as low as 384kb/s, perhaps 0.9Mb/s or 1.8Mb/s, or even uncapped if you pay enough for the right tariff.

So it's possible that The Full Monty is uncapped, but it's also possible that it is capped. None of the tariffs that are capped mention that they are capped anywhere on the main T-Mobile website (as opposed to user reports on the forum), so the absence of a mention does not mean that a tariff is not capped. In other words, T-Mobile is not exactly forthcoming with information about the cap on a given tariff, and the best (i.e. only reliable) way to find out is to test.

Just to be clear, the FAIL icon is for T-Mobile's failure to indicate the level of speed caps to (potential) on its website either before or after a contract has been purchased. Oh yes, and for the absence of knowledge about any of this on the part of most of the Customer Service staff.

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T-Mobile hails first 'truly unlimited' smartphone tariff

William Gallafent
Thumb Down

T-Mobile's not known for transparency in this regard.

T-Mobile is very bad at telling customers about the caps, restrictions, and limits on their data connections. The best data is found in a forum post (link below).

For example, the standard “free internet” of a SIM-only contract is in fact speed-limited at about 0.9Mb/s if bought directly from T-Mobile, or 384kb/s if bought from a reseller. This used to be called “unlimited internet booster” but since it's limited not only in speed, but also there's a transfer cap, _and_ certain services are prohibited (e.g. VoIP), I guess that they decided that three different types of limitation meant that calling it unlimited was pushing it too far even for them.

Gory details here: http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/discussions/index?page=forums&topic=801019114689730134158c03af039a4

Free pint to anybody who finds any mention of these speed caps on T-Mobile's site. Look out for the sign that reads “beware of the tiger”, you'll probably be getting warm.

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Despite Android lead, iOS devs slurp scads more mazuma

William Gallafent
Stop

Erm, “It's a comment about revenue not turn over”?

First, (a) … really? In which case, please provide your definition of those two terms and explain how they differ! As I understand it (and from wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revenue second sentence “In many countries, such as the United Kingdom, revenue is referred to as turnover.”) they are the same thing.

And as for (c), well, I'm pretty sure that's actually also not true, since fruit and veg fall into class i, class ii, and … other?: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7724347.stm indicates some relaxation of the rules a while ago, but as far as I know they are still there in some form in the EU, and from some cursory googling similar rules apply in the US, for example, too. There is a difference between apps and fruit, inasmuchas farmers grow fruit in the hope, but not the expectation, that it will all be class i, and then the fruit is graded and sent to several outlets / channels, according to its quality, which is not quite the same as writing apps, but that's because when growing a fruit you don't know whether it will be class i or class ii until it's graded, whereas the decision to grow a class i or class ii app is actively made while it is growing. Apart from that writing apps and growing fruit is basically exactly the same set of operations. But I digress.

I'll go with (b) though, and one out of three ain't bad :)

Footnote: perhaps the same rules that [tesco apple] apply are supposed to ensure that the quality of produce sold in their stores is up to a certain standard, so that shoppers may be confident about the items they purchase, provided those rules are applied carefully. Others, such as [local-grocer android], perhaps do not have, or apply as carefully, such stringent rules, which may or may not lead to a perception, or an actuality, of reduced quality or reliability, which might put shoppers off, causing them to prefer the big rule-based players, even when it might appear that more money is paid for ostensibly the “same” item.

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Mozilla updates to Firefox 8, disables add-ons

William Gallafent
Meh

You're on the wrong “channel” …

You should download a current release version from the firefox website and install it on top of your current beta version. You'll then be on the “release” channel rather than the “beta” channel. There used to be a way to switch channels in the UI, but it was removed. http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/questions/837315 and, for the details, https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=659972 …

Comments in the bug like “We don't want users to get unintentionally stuck on a different channel because the channel switcher UI is suddenly gone.” seem to have lost the argument … and you are one such user :)

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A tenth of Chinese farmland polluted by heavy metals

William Gallafent
FAIL

There should be a law against it …

… but wait, there is. http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/business/sectors/32447.aspx probably links to details somewhere. It is illegal to export electronic waste from the EU, but this law is (was) not being well enforced, e.g,: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-10846395 …

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LibreOffice fixes virus-friendly Word import flaw

William Gallafent

Quick off the mark …

It looks as if 3.4.3 has been available since 31st August, why a story about this today? Or did I miss something?

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OS X Lion roars, coughs on appearance in App Store

William Gallafent
Stop

Skint? Really? Yet you have a mac that is modern enough to run 10.7?

Then how about selling it on eBay for some easy money? Even macs that are not capable of running 10.7 still sell for good money, because they're still useful computers.

And as for indicating that you plan to install a pirated copy of 10.7, well, if you don't want to spend £20.99 to upgrade from 10.6 to 10.7 then don't upgrade. That Is All. Apart from wondering where the extra £9.01 in your statement comes from.

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William Gallafent
Facepalm

“ready in xx minutes” counter?

- you mean like the one visible in the “Purchased” tab of the App Store application while the “app” is downloading?

As for nomenclature, an Operating System is now an App that one buys in an App Store™? Hmm.

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OCZ Vertex bashes users with Blue Screen of Death

William Gallafent
WTF?

A storage device crashes the whole system?

What does that tell you about the system? Either that the (SATA) drivers, parts of the core OS, or both, are badly broken. It's notoriously difficult to protect the OS from faulty drivers, … but SATA? That's a pretty core system component. I guess those drivers are written by the Mainboard or chipset manufacturers rather than Microsoft, but I'd still hope that they've been pretty well tested … and it is a bit disappointing that Windows (7 presumably) is still unable to protect itself from rogue drivers. Once the system has booted, even if its system disc failed or started behaving otherwise strangely I would just expect some things to stop working, but certainly nothing to crash. So I would probably blame jointly the motherboard vendor and OS vendor for these crashes, not OCZ. Sure, the OCZ drives may be doing something odd on the SATA bus, but that should never be able to bring down the system.

I wonder how these devices behave when used with systems containing the same hardware running Mac OS, Linux, FreeBSD, NetBSD, … has anybody seen any reports of “BSOD” equivalents (kernel panic etc.) there with these drives?

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Mio Spirit 687 satnav

William Gallafent

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Exactly. Another way in which standalone navigation units are inferior to smartphone software.

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German railways merge NFC networks

William Gallafent
Stop

45 minutes Oxford to London?

Er, which train is that then? The quickest I can see takes 54 minutes (the 1736).

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Roundabouts and swings at Everything Everywhere

William Gallafent

… did they switch on cross-network roaming when it was suggested?

“not good service in the capital” is a pretty weak thing to say! But they really should have suggested (and walked you through) switching on cross-network roaming. Being able to use Orange _and_ T-mobile cells makes a _big_ difference, even in the big cities!

(I left Orange many years ago for various reasons, now with T-mobile, but the network-share has been a boon!)

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William Gallafent
Stop

Silly minimum contract lengths?

Like 30 days. Dreadful, I find it terrible to be stuck in a contract for such a long time. http://www.t-mobile.co.uk/shop/sim-only/tariffs/

And if you think it's retarded not to charge users who exceed their streaming/downloading limit (note that there's no limit on “surfing and email“), but simply to stop streaming / downloading from working until the next billing period, then that's your choice! I like it, it keeps my bills down! Excess data (e.g. at 10p/MB, on Three) can quickly add up.

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William Gallafent

3G roaming will be nice (for Orange users ;) …

T-mobile's 3G has been great for ages here!

Note that the 2G roaming already allows EDGE on Orange, which works very well - big improvement when out of T-mobile coverage!

When I was on holiday, though, I was glad of the 2G roaming, which allowed me an Orange signal for voice and 2G data.

[The post is required, and must contain letters. Apparently :)]

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Ken's magnificent seven diagram

William Gallafent
Boffin

Informational diagrams … should take more time to look at than to create?

This could be argued to be true for works of art, … but surely not for diagrams used as information transmission tools! I think the opposite is the goal in this context (modulo time cost of diagram-maker(s) vs time cost of diagram-viewers).

Diagrams like this are a Drawn Once* Viewed Many medium, and as such every extra (single) minute spent improving the quality of the diagram leads to a reduction in the time spent by _each_ recipient. And each piece of information clearly expressed there reduces by [the number of people who need it] the amount of dialogue required before clarity and “same sheet” understanding is reached.

[* OK, they may well be revised and so on, but most often number of makers << number of viewers]

Not complaining about the article here, just about the appropriateness of the quote (unless meant ironically!), and <rant>the mentality of an increasing number of people, who seem to spew “information” without ever taking in, acting on, or reacting to, any data or questions that are sent to them.</rant>

Glad I got that off my chest.

p.s. I'm not locked to the “take a long time to make it so it's trivial to understand” view, but in general those in a position to be making the diagrams /should/ have the capability to make good ones that may be understood by more junior people (or those from a different field), and so not to do that smacks of laziness or arrogance (or, being generous, a genuine failure to realise the level of expression required to achieve understanding by the target audience).

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O2 to raise broadband prices by up to 27%

William Gallafent
Stop

Thomson routers are fine!

Why is it that people have so much bad to say about them? I've always found them to be fine, for years. Two office installations (Be Unlimited) and one at home (O2), long lines, short lines, configuring the firewalls for VPN etc., never any serious hassle. They feel like the best this side of Draytek to me!

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William Gallafent

Interesting.

They haven't called here yet. £7.50pcm for a genuinely unlimited connection has been most agreeable. Sic transit …

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Nokia Digital Radio Headset DAB

William Gallafent
Stop

85% “of the UK's population” covered …

… does not mean 85% of the UK is covered. I guess it means that the residences of 85% of the population have coverage (or does it take in to accounts the locations of everyone on the move as well? ;)

In general, while I'm travelling, I don't spend much of my time in somebody's house, so using that figure as an indicator of likely coverage while travelling is disingenuous at best.

Having said that, DAB in the car works very well in general for me. It also falls back to FM when the DAB signal fails, as long as there is an FM signal of the same station available, which is great apart from the fact that the audio isn't synchronized between the two (the device should buffer the FM to synchronise with the DAB, but I guess they thought it wasn't worth bothering (or it was too hard))! That does have a higher gain antenna than this device, I imagine, as well as the ability to draw a lot more power, both of which probably help it hold on to reception in marginal areas.

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Mozilla reaches for almost perfect 10 with latest Firefox 4 beta

William Gallafent
Stop

Any techie worth his salt …

… probably needs to use client certificates. Sadly, these prove impossible to import on Mac OS X (as per my comment on the Firefox 4 beta 9 story), making Opera unusable. Safari crashed yesterday. Minefield seems fine.

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Mozilla slings out 9th beta for Firefox 4

William Gallafent

… it's a minefield.

Well, I got fed up with the vagaries of Safari, so installed Minefield of 2011-01-24, which seems to be fine.

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William Gallafent
Thumb Down

Not useful as a final beta on Mac

I now see serious redraw problems both in the title bar / tab bar, and in the main window (these are new in beta 9, beta 8 was fine, this does not feel like a product should when it's approaching release, when such serious regressions are being introduced this late in the process!) …

Anyway, these redraw problems have made beta 9 unusable for me on Mac OS 10.6. https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=623852 is probably the culprit, and is fixed in nightly builds … if it _isn't_ fixed, the if a bug this serious made it in to the RC, then that would be Very Bad. Fingers crossed that doesn't happen.

<rant>This caused me to try Opera for the first time in ages: absolutely useless to me. First thing I try to do is to import a client certificate from a p12. Not possible. Orphaned file dialogs, focus-stealing by bits of UI I'm not using at the moment, ends up not importing it once I've managed to get focus to the right "OK" buttons in the right order for the several layers of modality. The fact that it's unable even to perform this simple task, the first I tried, means I won't be trying it again any time soon. This is in a full release, 11.00, not a beta, by the way.</rant> Shame, Opera Mobile is very nice on Windows Mobile …

Back to Safari, which seems to (a) redraw correctly, and (b) be able to import and use my client certificate. And looking forward to beta 10!

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Crematorium to heat council swimming pool

William Gallafent
Stop

Dead bodies do not make good fuel?

… in which case, why are they being used as fuel in Sweden?

http://www.thelocal.se/22610/20091012/

;)

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Verizon Wi-Fi hotspot tool coming to all iPhones?

William Gallafent

Getting there …

Well, I think this would at last mean iPhone had caught up in function with my three year old Windows Mobile phone - WiFi tethering is the last thing missing from my required features!

Sure, iPhone has a much higher resolution screen than my current phone, faster CPU, blah blah, but at the moment it is missing one of the core functions that I rely on, viz WiFi tethering!

Ah, hang on, there's still the problem of not being able to install any software I like on it _without_ invalidating the warranty (jailbreaking) … ah well, roll on TomTom for Android …

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Opera Mobile 10.1 lands 'Carakan' engine on Symbian

William Gallafent
Gates Halo

Windows Mobile?

Since Opera Mobile is the browser that made Windows Mobile a viable smartphone platform, I hope we can see the same bump from 10 to 10.1, and a similar performance improvement, before too long! It seems to be on 10.0 still at the moment.

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Provincial outrage over BT's broadband upgrade race

William Gallafent
Boffin

It's not so much "40Mb/s vs 24Mb/s" …

… as “more than you can get with ADSL2+”. At the moment I get 3.3Mb/s although the equipment is all ADSL2+, due to the length of the line. FTTC will give me a significant increase in speed since the DSLAM will be a lot closer to my house! 3.3Mb/s is not enough for some services that already exist, e.g. BBC iPlayer HD (3.5Mb/s), so that increase will be welcome!

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William Gallafent
Go

Fewer than 1000 premises connected?

Still in with a chance, not for an “automatic” upgrade, but “If 75% of your exchange registers, BT will engage with your community to see what we can do in your area.”

Make of that what you will! I'm sure with that many people interested, other parties may also consider stepping in and providing FTTC.

The exchange I have an interest in is at 0.58% at the moment!

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Everything Everywhere unveils contrary figures

William Gallafent
WTF?

… so switch to a more reliable operator!

Perhaps you should switch to T-mobile, which has been working very well for me, both data and voice, for years.

In fact, why on earth haven't you switched away already, if you find Orange's service to be so bad? There are several others to choose from.

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Mozilla man: Firefox 4 will leapfrog JavaScript rivals

William Gallafent

Slowest commonly used browser?

Hmm, I used Safari 5 the other day on this MacBook (on which I usually use Firefox 4.0 beta), and Safari seemed hugely slower than Firefox to me. Really sluggish. Couldn't stand it. So I looked to see how it is supposed to compare. (Incidentally, I've found IE8 to be all but unusable too due to similar sloth, on a recentish Windows notebook which runs FF well.)

Anyway, the interesting thing here is that it seems (according to http://arewefastyet.com/) that Safari is a lot _faster_ at running JavaScript code. So why the apparent sloth?

Perhaps making Javascript run faster does not necessarily make browsing faster (apologies for iconoclasm so early in the morning)! I have a slowish (0.6Mb/s) internet connection, which of course means that fetching things takes longer than it might. Well, whatever the cause, Firefox does a much better job of giving me a snappy browsing experience, including for Javascript-heavy (and AJAX-heavy) sites.

Is it starting to be time to use one browser as a web browser (viewing "web pages"), and a different one as a runtime (for "web applications")? Is it time for developers to investigate (shock horror) the time taken to render things to the display, rather than that taken to run software written in Javascript? Would be interested to see coarse-level profiles of complete page-load time broken down by fetch / render / run Javascript etc. for the different browsers.

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Google heats up native code for Chrome OS

William Gallafent
Stop

0

Er, imagine having a cache in your browser that stores objects locally (what a novel idea). Your browser checks that the version of Photoshop you downloaded last time is up to date when you point your web browser at that web page, and uses that if it is, only downloading anything if an update is available.

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Apple details iPad's 'breakthrough' mobile contract

William Gallafent
Stop

0

At my house, ADSL2 (Bulldog/Pipex) gives me about 576kb/s downstream, HSDPA (T-Mobile) about 2Mb/s. So I would use a mobile connection to download large files, if it were uncapped.

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Nvidia drives in second-gen Ion

William Gallafent

HD Video

Can a system with this chipset play back 1080p 24fps video (OK, 48fps if you want 3D), I wonder … if so, it's useful!

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Mozilla ditches Mac OS X 10.4 support in fresh Firefox

William Gallafent
WTF?

Storm in a teacup

Corporate (er, what do you expect, this is an IT news website!) … and I really haven't seen a G3 running for years, honestly. I found a BBC micro upstairs earlier on though :)

Your first sentence says it all. It's a tiny proportion of the user base. For a free-at-the-point-of-use software project, that is reason enough to drop it as a target platform. Having said that, I expect that if someone offered somebody enough money to cover the cost of maintaining Firefox for that platform, then it would be done.

Nobody's stopping people who want to persist with old hardware or OS releases from doing so, but they shouldn't be surprised when support in a given application for their chosen platform gradually evaporates as their proportion of the total user base of that application diminishes. I have a computer with an AGP graphics card slot, no PCI-E. So I (a) pay a bit more for a replacement card and (b) don't have access to any of the latest chipsets. That's fine, it's just progress. I can choose to spend some cash one a more modern machine, or not!

Firefox 3.6 works fine for web on all of the obsolescent platforms you cite, and will continue to do so, so where's the problem?

If it's that important to a given user to have the latest (free) application software, then either upgrade to an OS less than three years old at the time or writing (more, before this issue becomes concrete) if your computer supports it, or to a computer less than seven years old if not.

The kids will get over it (besides which, by the time this newer version of Firefox is released, they will be able to inherit a sufficiently modern machine to run it, right?)

I still don't see what all the fuss is about.

Always best to remain anonymous when conversing with people having an IQ lower than 70, by the way, well done for that ;)

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William Gallafent
Stop

Only truly ancient hardware …

To take one example, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibook#iBook_G4 was released more than six years ago, and runs 10.5 fine.

Point of fact: I seriously doubt that more than 50% of PowerPC macs currently in use and connected to the internet are not capable of running 10.5 or 10.6. I haven't seen a G3 running for _years_, and we've retired all but one of our G4s now too.

Anyway, if someone is happy with hardware that is older than six years, then surely they'll be happy with using the still-supported Firefox 3.6 until 2016 or so, when it reaches the same age, and their hardware is more than 12 years old! ;)

10.5 and 10.6 are the only two sane releases to build to, by the way :)

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William Gallafent
Stop

Mac OS 10.5 runs fine on a G5.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mac_OS_X_Leopard#System_requirements (couldn't find it on Apple's own site!)

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Open source - the once and future dream

William Gallafent

Zimbra …

… is now being acquired by VMWare, which apparently “Enables Virtualization of the Application Layer” … http://www.vmware.com/landing_pages/vmware-acquires-zimbra/

I suppose Yahoo! realised it didn't need Zimbra after all!

ViMbra?

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