* Posts by Nick Ryan

1459 posts • joined 10 Apr 2007

Apple Watch RIPPED APART, its GUTS EXPOSED to hungry Vultures

Nick Ryan
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Doesn't look to be unreasonably put together. When buying a watch one generally doesn't expect it to be upgradeable and just because somebody's shoved a small computer system and large screen into the form factor of a (large) watch doesn't make it a candidate for instant upgrading.

Like anything vaguely phone or computer like, this device will likely be obsolete within 3-5 years and the battery (in combination with a good quality charging circuit) should last that long. Replacing the battery after that time ought to be possible given this tear down but many users will just upgrade / replace the device instead because that's what they are used to doing with mobile devices.

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JavaScript CPU cache snooper tells crooks EVERYTHING you do online

Nick Ryan
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Re: I've got it now.

Aha. If that is the case then thanks for explaining just how this thing might be a vaguely useful exploit.

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Trading Standards pokes Amazon over 'libellous' review

Nick Ryan
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Re: Sugar Free Gummi Bear Reviews, Anyone?

It's not often that I genuinely LOL, but those reviews were so well written and descriptive that I just couldn't help myself. Shit. :)

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Yay, we're all European (Irish) now on Twitter (except Americans)

Nick Ryan
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If there's a conflict of demand between the US and a country like Ireland who do you think corporations will side with?

Whichever way makes more money. More insightful companies look to the long term on this as well particularly if their US market is largely saturated and they've just noticed that there are considerably more non-Americans on the planet than Americans.

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UK now part of another Euro data-spaff scheme

Nick Ryan
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"a key tool for national authorities to cooperate to fight terrorism and serious organised crime."

Ah, important to get the word terror in there, however the reality is more likely to be "catch tax dodgers" but that doesn't scare up the proles as much and "paedophiles" was even less easy to lever onto the justification. It's all about the money, with law enforcement a second priority - it's no coicidence that "serious organised crime" is considered so serious as they don't pay their taxes.

Maybe I'm just feeling particularly cynical today...

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Verizon to world: STOP opening dodgy phishing emails, FOOLS

Nick Ryan
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Re: No defense against willful ignorance.

If the damn Sender and Reply-To domain names don't match then it's usually a sign that something screwy is happening. This wouldn't fix every instance of phishing / spam but would resolve a lot of them and "good" bulk email senders like to ensure that an SPF record is created pointing to their systems if the client wants to keep the sender name consistent with their in-house emails.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Dear El Reg...

Or El Reg could quit this bullshit idea of foisting unrelated and largely ignores large images at the top of every article and the main page.

I'm sure I'm not the only one that every time the El Reg home page opens up I now automatically scroll down and ignore the retardely large image at the top so I can read the headlines below. I even paid attention recently and found that there were other article links "top stories" on the right hand side of these pointless images that I also skipped because of this. Talk about making a feature pointless.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: One thing is very interesting

It would have been nice if Exchange also supported SPF but no... AFAIK it took until MS Exchange 2013 because MS were too busy trying to foist their own "solution" onto the Internet instead of supporting standards.

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Xiaomi's birthday present to itself: Flogging 2m phones in 12 hours

Nick Ryan
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Re: Profit not volumes

Profit = the difference between the amount earned and the amount spent in buying, operating, or producing something.

Amazon make an enormous amount of money. However rather than sitting on it and admiring it or spaffing it at shareholders in great chunks they chose to continually re-invest the money.

It's basic business finance where if you record a profit the government will help themselves to a huge chunk of it (at least in the UK) therefore a good business accountant will always manage to offset the amount earned against investments, costs and other reasonable expenses to ensure that what's remaining is as low as possible. This is why international companies shift their profits to the most corporation tax friendly country as it's the difference between losing 40% of your profit to tax or considerably less, e.g. 1-2%.

As for stock market "worth" this is a total nonsense market as the perceived value of shares is usually down to pure speculation and greed rather than any particular indication of a company's value or business prospects.

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The coming of DAB+: Stereo eluded the radio star

Nick Ryan
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Statistics and lies?

While everyone talks about the key figures, like around half of adults owning a digital radio, and almost 40% of listening now being done via digital, that obscures some of the key things. Like, how many of those digital radios are actually used?

I suppose it depends on what you mean by "owning"? Posessing a family car that happens to have DAB on it (never used) and an utterly useless DAB radio in the kitchen I guess that applies... but as for using? Never. The DAB on the car seems to be missing the desired channels, frequently drops into radio black holes and is generally crap - there appear to be lots of stations that I don't care for though. As for the kitchen radio? Poor to no-signal and very limited stations again puts that into the useless category.

If they're lumping Internet listening into the statistics then that just makes a total mockery of the numbers and means that DAB uptake is in reality very, very low.

The one thing that I have noticed about discrete DAB sets is that they are finally no longer all ugly-as-shit with as few uselessly multi-functional buttons as possible. No idea what the designers were thinking but making all the sets as ugly and unusable as possible really wouldn't have helped the cause.

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Smart meters are a ‘costly mistake’ that'll add BILLIONS to bills

Nick Ryan
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Re: Thermostats

It's outstanding isn't it? Even with countless explanations, "her indoors" still thinks that in summer you should turn the damn thermostats down and that you turn them back up in winter.

Not just me either, a heating engineer who visited has the same problem where whenever his wife is cold she turns the thermostat to max, and then when she's warm she turns it way down again.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: The reason they are so keen on deploying smart meteres...

but I'll leave it to others to guess which ones that the powers-that-be decide to grace

Hmmm... let me think on the exclusions: "Celebrities" (or any mind numbingly talentless twatt who's spent more than 5 minutes on a reality show), MPs and their aides, local councillors with the exception of the one or two token members who will estoll the virtues of the scheme and those with their trouts in the the "smart" meter trough?

My insincerest apologies if I've missed any other worthies out.

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700,000 beautiful women do the bidding of one Twitter-scamming man

Nick Ryan
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(...)or the fact that so many people in the world, (not just via this particular scam), continue to believe that there exist, 'magic' pills, potions or extracts to loose weight.

But people are lazy. And Stupid. Often stupid because they are lazy. Laziness is an inate human trait and we wouldn't be where we are now without putting so much effort into making things easier for ourselves.

Look at how many half-respectable websites have a panel with spam shit on every page. The ones listing "you wouldn't believe what happened next in these 12 amazing pictures": photoshopped tatt for anybody with a clue or "online companies hate you knowing this trick to buying iPads": preying on the greedy and desperate or "doctors hate this miracle diet pill" (with appalling mis-matched "before" and "after" shots): seeking the lazy and gullible. And this shit is repeated time and time again, everywhere - slowly reinforcing validity through repetition which is a key factor in brain washing and certain established organisation types.

There genuinely are some medical products that can drastically help with weight loss. However these have usually been found to have rather unpleasant side effects often centred around or involving serious malnutrition buy often others as well. Not even the corporate controlled drug testing processes have permitted these drugs through to market given how dangerous they are. There are some very clever investigations underway that are looking at slight twists on the theme but from what I understand, even these are quite a few years away from even approaching clinical testing - one of the complexities is that our digestive systems are pretty much unique to each individual given genetic, lifestyle, age and sex differences and the widely varying makeup of bacteria that inhabit our guts and that are critical to digestion.

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Hey, Microsoft, we can call Windows 10 apps anything we like – you're NOT OUR REAL MOM

Nick Ryan
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Joke

...and the marketing drones cometh. Rebrand. Refresh. Recycle. Must have a new mission statement and whatever happens just make it look like something has changed.

Q: What do you call it when there's a marketing drone on the moon?

A: A problem

Q: What do you call it when there's ten marketing drones on the moon?

A: A serious problem

Q: What do you call it when all the marketing drones are on the moon?

A: Problem solved

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Chipzilla spawns 60-core, six-teraflop Xeon Phi MONSTER CHIP

Nick Ryan
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Re: The Platform

Turns out that it's only been around since the beginning of March (http://www.theplatform.net/2015/03/01/welcome-to-the-platform/... so I guess I haven't missed much!

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Nick Ryan
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The Platform

Sister website? News to me :) However have found the link now I look for it (top right corner of this page), but that's about it.

Maybe I'm being oblivious to these things (I have developed a habit over many years of web surfing to ignore all adverts) but I'm sure I'd have noticed this!

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Ford: Our latest car gizmo will CHOKE OFF your FUEL if you're speeding

Nick Ryan
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Re: speed kills

In any case , the guy I saw joining the motorway at 30 miles an hour would be the safest guy on the road, instead of rammed sideways by a truck and flying into the central armco

Exactly. If the traffic on the road is moving at 60mph (assume inside lane of motorway with trucks) then the safest speed to join the motorway is 60mph. This is why these things are called "accelleration lanes", to allow the joining vehicles to get to speed so they can safely join the road.

Had an argument with the mother-in-law a few years back about how extremely dangerous it is to join a motorway at 30mph compared to 60/70mph. She just couldn't get it through her head that the gaps to join would effectively be larger and she would be less of an utter hazard to all following vehicles (who would also have to slow down to 30mph and also join dangerously). But this is the same woman who ignores all cyclists on the road and claims that "it's ok to drink and drive if you're local".

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Another nail in the coffin...

It's always the case that inappropriate speed is the problem. And councils love to slap inappropriately low speed limits on roads where some idiot somehow manages to lose control on an otherwise open, clear road with a minor curve in it. It must make them feel good about doing something...

Other than the 40 milers, who are seemingly oblivious to every other road user or speed limit and likely get a nose bleed if their car approaches 50mph (especially on an accelleration lane joining a motorway), the most dangerous drivers are those who drive too close to others or just the wrong speed for the circumstance. Driving 30mph in a 30mph zone is fine, but not when you're 30cm behind the car in front. Likewise driving 30mph in a 30mph zone around a 90 degree blind corner is stupid as well.

But appropriate speed doesn't matter, it is far more important to rake in cash, demonise those who drive safely but get caught going over the speed limit a bit (I'm not advocating speeding, just trying to be realistic). Of course then comes the entirely valid, but annoying, argument that the 30mph speed limit is not a target speed, it's the maximum.

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HUGE Aussie asteroid impact sent TREMORS towards the EARTH'S CORE

Nick Ryan
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Re: Silly question .... how old is the moon?

Any Earth collision that formed the moon would have happened much, much earlier. That kind of impact would have wiped out all life except possibly for a few very resilient bacteria, and there would be very little record of anything that happened before it.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Devonian?

There is also one more thing to keep in mind... the high speed impact of a very large rock with the planet's surface will trigger immense shockwaves which will also trigger volcanic activity elsewhere.

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WinPhone? PAH! If you want Microsoft's mobe apps, grab an Android

Nick Ryan
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Removable?

I'm quite happy for these apps to be bundled with phones. However they must be removable should the user not want them: foisting unwanted, unremovable crap (crap: as in unwanted apps) on a device is simply not acceptable.

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Ten things you always wanted to know about IP Voice

Nick Ryan
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Which PC would normally be connected to the LAN via the phone...

It's quite common for VOIP phones to connect to the PC's network connector and to have a "pass-through" connector to connect the phone to the PC. These phones are effectively 3 port network switches, with the three connections being 1) the wall socket, 2) the phone and 3) the PC. These network switches are usually 100, not Gigabit ports.

While this may sound an odd thing to do, it greatly reduces the number of network ports required although many sites have a socket for the phone and a socket for the PC in place already, it just depends on whether or not the phone socket can be repurposed as a network socket or not. You'd be surprised how many can't be!

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Samsung-Microsoft deal will bundle Office 365 with Android Knox

Nick Ryan
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Re: so negative, wow!

But it is true, for the large majority of cases, that Google Apps are "good enough". Most users of MS Word do not write multi-column, multi-chapter index integrated tightly version controlled monster documents - for these users a PC is little more than a glorified typewriter. Some parts of the "office suite" the Google Doc editors are actually better than the Office 365 versions.

However when you need to go beyond, for example, a relatively simply structured document or letter, then you will quickly find the shortcomings of the Google Doc editors. While there are "plugins" that help to alleviate the gap in functionality, experience has shown most of them to be pretty appalling - getting better but still not very good.

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Our 4King benders are so ace we're going full OLED, says LG

Nick Ryan
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Re: I want mine on a large sheet of paper

I hope you used HD paint?

Seriously, projection screens are being sold as "HD ready", "HD compatible" and similar nonsense.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: OLED Burn-in

We tried that LCD fix, and believe me - these buggers were "burnt in" quite effectively. The manufacturer even accepted them for replacement without argument which indicated an abnormal fault that they knew about rather than just "sticky" LCD pixels.

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Nick Ryan
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LG and Panasonic still are, and from what I hear are still selling fairly well.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Life?

One of the biggest hurdles of OLED degradation isn't so much the "brightness" degredation it was that the different colours degraded at different rates. I understand that they've solved this problem, I'd guess from improved tech but also improved management of the output balance during the life of the device.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: OLED Burn-in

OLED can definitely burn in just like plasma but the management tech and operating parameters should mitigate this - along with being sensible. I have what's probably an 8 year old plasma and there is no burn in on it.

Amusingly LCDs shouldn't get burn in, but I've come across a few outstanding models that managed this feat... piss poor power regulation I'd guess.

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Nick Ryan
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I still have a "professional class" (whatever that really means) panasonic 42" display running as a TV. I'd replace it with something that natively had HDMI if I could find a display that was genuinely as good: the plasma has fantastic viewing angles, a nice glass screen which is pretty much child slobber proof and isn't easily scratched like a plastic display and the pixel accuracy and colour / black-to-white range is superb as well. The downside is that it's not HD but with the quality of the display few people actually notice that.

Currently I'm patiently waiting on OLED tech to see what comes out at a sane price.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: content is king

That would certainly explain the runaway success of 3DTV

That will probably be because there was very little content that actually benefitted from being in 3D. From the nauseating "enhanced 3D" that sky sports shat out to the gratuitous throwing of things at the viewer for no apparent reason in films, there was obviously a serious shortage of experienced, or good, 3D directors and content producers. This situation wasn't helped because much TV / file content is a summary of vision filmed from further away than a human would naturally be and the further things are away the less the 3D effect. While having stuff in 3D is nice, it rarely added to the experience and then there were the problems with actually viewing it in 3D...

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Hello? Police? Yes, I'm a car and my idiot driver's crashed me

Nick Ryan
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Re: FORD SYNC

Yep, spotted than on new Fords. Seems to be something similar on some new Peugeot models as well.

Does anybody know if this part of the same scheme or is it a separate initiative?

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Sit back and let someone else manage your telephony

Nick Ryan
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The hardest part about dealing with the Ciscos, Mitels and Avayas of the PBX world is how they insist on using different terminology for largely the same features and to add to the entertainment also add various artificial restrictions to each of these features. Want an extension / user to be a member of more than one pickup group? Forget it on one system, on another they can be members of four but for no readily apparent reason not more than that. [just mindless examples] Gah!

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.Free domains at Amazon while Google says bye to .family

Nick Ryan
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Re: Seriously, every loser wins?

Glad that I'm not the only one to have read it that way.

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Honey, I shrunk the Windows footprint

Nick Ryan
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Re: Don't stop there

In Microsoft's (partial) defence, a huge number of the problems with Windows and Sleep mode are due to device drivers and in my experience, particularly wireless network drivers but these aren't the only culprit. However one application in particular seems to often make a mess of Windows Sleep mode, sometimes even preventing it completely: Microsoft Outlook. Thanks for that MS.

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Leaked Windows 10 build hints at peer-to-peer patching

Nick Ryan
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Re: oh lord...

This may be something that is also intended to help non-first world Internet connection countries or regions. Just considering these situations there are a lot of instances where there will be quite a few locally networked PCs but with rather limited bandwidth - far better that the systems are patched and updated than not. Or another easy example in the first-world Internet sceneria on a HE campus of some form there will be thousands of non-domain controlled PCs downloading thousands of updates which eats a lot of bandwidth.

This is actually rather a good idea from Microsoft (as long as it's done properly, but that's true for anything really).

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Sir Terry remembered: Dickens' fire, Tolkien's imagination, and the wit of Wodehouse

Nick Ryan
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IT Angle

IT angle? Who cares! I suppose there were the tweets though.

He annoyed other authors with his writing style but succeeded at being a greater author than most of his detractors because what he wrote was fun to read, often clever and insightful on many levels.

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Vodafone: Can't make calls on our network? Use Wi-Fi

Nick Ryan
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Re: There's also ...

The "Three" version is shite. Install a crappy app on your mobile, register it - but only when you have a good signal, and then suffer with an utterly backwards, non-integrated "phone and SMS message" system that doesn't work very well, is annoying to use, and is entirely separate to your normal phone and SMS functions.

I have a nasty feeling that the other offerings aren't much better.

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HAPPY 20th Birthday MICROSOFT BOB

Nick Ryan
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Re: Memories of Microsoft Bob

I'm starting to believe Microsoft Bob to be a giant false memory; I don't believe I've ever seen Microsoft Bob, even though I feel I have.

You're lucky. Some "friends" of mine decided that it would be fun to install it on my computer when I wasn't around and then to watch me curse and swear at it. Gits.

Almost as funny as when they decided to configure a 2 minute long wav file as a windows launch sound, during which time the system hung until the audio had completed playing. Win 3.x - what a joy.

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Nick Ryan
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The original design of the Windows Start menu (not the correct name for it, can't be bothered to look it up) was for the bar to at the top of the screen. I believe it was moved to the bottom by default quite late on in the development cycle to differentiate Windows from Apple.

If you find an older version of the OS, move the start menu bar to the top of the screen and suddenly you'll find that it begins to make a lot more sense. Shutdown being at the end of the list of options, being the most obvious, but also any popup menus that show as well.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Mutt mistake

Arrrgh. I'm not starting to remember the ghastly hacks that were required to completely remove the sodding Office Assistants from an installed copy of Office. The alternative was to uninstall everything vaguely related to MS Office, kick the original installer hard in the knackers (or another appropriate punishment) and then install MS Office again, this time taking care to deselect the assistant options.

IIRC after a while there were non-MS tools to remove the assistants from MS Office installations, and of course installation profiles that automatically deselected the things.

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Would YOU touch-type on this chunk-tastic keyboard?

Nick Ryan
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Re: Eternal problem

Was trying to remember the name of that device from the late 70s... Microwriter - the device that was interesting but useless for almost everything due to certain little functional issues. Connectivity - good luck with that. Editing - you basically can't edit until you get the text into a more conventional device.

This said, the rather more recent follow up CyKey does look vaguely interesting. It would look a bit more interesting if it was possible to connect it to any form of modern device without all kinds of nasty kludges and cables. They claim to be working on bluetooth support but are having licensing problems... which is a little strange seeing as bluetooth chips are pretty damn easy to get up and running as they are largely "commodity" systems now, but maybe the problem is more integration / configuration and power management on CyKey's side.

Still a niche product though.

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Hated smart meters likely to be 'a costly failure' – MPs

Nick Ryan
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Re: Sort of related question

Nest works fine for me. A much better interface to deal with than the utterly unwieldy two on, two off or some nightmarish one-off, one-on kludge during winter particularly when you have the typical interface of 4 buttons repurposed for everything in some archaic manner. You ditch the silly idea of "heating on" and "heating off" and just set the temperature that you want, when you want it. In a particularly cold winter's night you don't really want the heating "off", you just want it at a lower level than during the day when you are around and would like to feel your fingers. The temperature is set at a target value for a particular time therefore if you want 20C at 6am in the morning and your house takes 45m to warm up to that from 12C it will turn on at 5:15am. Similarly, if the temperature is 16C and it predicts only a 30m warm up period, it'll turn on at 5:30am instead. (silly temp examples, but you get the idea)

The auto-away option overrides the temperature to whatever you set as your minimum / frost-protect temperature and should spot when you are away or not in case you forget to turn it off. The remote app can turn the heating up and down or trigger the away option manually and if you expect to be home at, eg, 8pm you can tell the system to have it warm for you then.

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Canadian bloke refuses to hand over phone password, gets cuffed

Nick Ryan
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Re: The Law on encryption passwords in the US is well established.

That actually seems like a sensible way to interpret things like data encryption. How the hell did this happen?

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Hidden TrueCrypt volumes

Love the map :) Haven't seen that particular one before.

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£280k Kickstarter camera trigger campaign crashes and burns

Nick Ryan
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Re: Risk?

I'd forgotten about some of those, particularly the impossible projection watch, which even it were physically possible to somehow cram the required components into the ring (I consider it currently borderline possible but damn expensive as most would have to be custom integrated) however just the reality of basic geometry made the actual projection side impossible at the angles and targets demonstrated in the photoshopped images.

And as for Bleen... whichever fools backed that really need to watch less hollywood "sci"-fi and engage a bit with reality.

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Android malware hijacks power button, empties wallet while you sleep

Nick Ryan
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re: @MichaelMorrissey

Thanks for registering just to write unsubstantiated almost-racist rubbish.

Android users tend to be from "the third world"? Hardly: many android (and winphone) devices are often the same price or more than the apple equivalents. This doesn't equate with them being used by "poor people".

For some reference statistics, which you will doubtless enjoy manipulating and misreading to give whatever picture you want: smartphone % penetration by country..

Back to your "third world" angle: Here's a breakdown of the US's smartphones by OS. Unless you are going to now state that the USians are in fact living in a third world country, would you care to explain this?

Relating back into the first stats, here's one showing worldwide market share..

While it is interesting to note that the US has a more balanced split of Apple vs Android in it's market, the US is only 13th in overall smartphone penetration. Some "third world" countries such as Spain and Germany have rather higher OS splits in favour of Android compared to Apple.

One point to note is that in the developing markets the price paid for handsets is less than in the developed markets. This necessarily skews the market split away from Apple as other than 2nd hand or older devices, most Apple phones are priced out of the reasonable disposable income price range - food, heating, clothes, education or mobile phone? WinPhone devices are making reasonable inroads into these price constrained markets but nothing compared to feature phones and to a lesser extent "landfill" android phones. It's these phones that will be targetted by this kind of exploit, they are often unsupported, never updated by their manufacturer and often too costly for an end user to even consider the data bandwidth to peform an update and often as a result they have access to local app stores and not Google Play. However this does not mean that an app that requires Root access will work as even the landfill devices don't come with root access as standard.

Basically, it's a security scare story from an advertiser that's sole reason for existing is to sell security products.

(EDIT: some of the links may not work as the damn stat site sometimes arbitrarily requires a signin to view the stats. sorry).

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(Re)touching on a quarter-century of Adobe Photoshop

Nick Ryan
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Quark also shafted every user, repeatedly, through their despicable file version handling practices. Want to import a file from a version that's more than one release old? Forget it. How about save a file in a new version in an earlier format to allow somebody else to use it? Forget it. Gits. This and their dastardly unreliable configuration settings that somehow reset themselves just before a deadline or files that were saved to be unreadable... the pain just goes on.

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Nick Ryan
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Re: Need a good kicking

Adobe patch their Photoshop products? Ha, we'll have flying pigs next. Oh wait, you mean the "buy the next version and hope it's been fixed in that" style of patching...

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UN negotiations menaced by THOUSANDS of TOPLESS LADIES with MAYONNAISE

Nick Ryan
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Re: And he is....

AIUI: very, very little of any worth goes on in the public chambers. Generally anything of value happens in the side (private) rooms with smaller groups. In English, just to annoy the French.

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TITANIC: Nuclear SUBMARINE cruising 'Sea of KRAKENS' may be FOUND ON icy MOON

Nick Ryan
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I thought that at one time but it's the weight that is the problem. Getting relatively light payloads as far as Titan is expensive on fuel as even with a large chunk of the journey being coasting which is likely why no orbital stages are discussed for this one. There are usually substantial course corrections (navigational changes) as they are inevitably sling shotted into place and we don't have any powerful enough engine systems which wouldn't require enormous amounts of fuel for a direct flight, even to Mars, let alone further. Lifting huge and heavy payloads into near Earth orbit is pretty much trivial in comparison to interplanetary missions.

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