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* Posts by Jonathan White

249 posts • joined 1 Apr 2008

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Virgin Media's flaky broadband network turns Bolton off

Jonathan White

Re: Borged by Liberty

FTTC Is supposedly being switched on in Bolton either this month or next. Just looked, I could get 60mb/s on FTTC. OK, it's half the 120MB/s I currently get on VM but the upsteam is twice as good (20mb/s rather than 10) - I do a lot of remote stuff - and it costs £15 a month less.

VM had better pull their finger out.

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Here's what YOU WON'T be able to do with your PlayStation 4

Jonathan White

Re: You'll be comforted to know though...

That would be 'probably' as in 'absolutely doesn't'? One of the things they've touted quite extensively about the PS4 is that is downloads patches (both game and OS) in the background and/or while the console is 'asleep'. Possibly also apply them, although personally I'd prefer it if it didn't do that bit without telling me.

Honestly, if you're going to complain about what it doesn't do, at least first find out what it does do..

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Finally – mind-controlled limbs without brain surgery

Jonathan White

Re: Stick google glass on him and...

Was just thinking the same thing - even looks a lot like the character in the game. Can we get a sample of him saying "I didn't ask for this.."

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Paying a TV tax makes you happy - BBC

Jonathan White

Re: I want to like the BBC

'I haven't worked or been in the BBC but if I had to guess it will be like some 1970s monolithic state enterprise, without any true accountability'

I haven't worked at or been in the BBC but if I had to guess Id' say it will be like an episode of Chorlton and the Wheelies, staffed by small creatures with no legs and a genial dragon and constantly menaced by a witch with a regional accent.

My guess is just as valid as yours.

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Virgin Mobile coughs to choking its customers

Jonathan White
Thumb Down

Re: Tethering

The One plans allow unmetered tethering, within normal acceptable use limits. To quote three's web page

'If you're on The One Plan you can use the internet when you're out and about with other devices including laptops, tablets and games consoles, just by connecting them through Wi-Fi or USB to your phone. You can tether on all our One Plan tariffs including SIM Only with a 1-month rolling contract.

Some of our other Pay Monthly plans as well as Pay As You Go plans come with all-you-can-eat data, but they don't allow tethering.'

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Kickstarted mobe charger 'kicked to death by Apple'

Jonathan White

Re: Hmmm

'Isn't the point of this standardisation to make sure that you can use a single charger with any data enabled phone and not to ensure that every phone has a uUSB connector? God forbid that uUSB is the connector technology that any standards compliant manufacturer must now use forever.'

It's not even a useful standard anyway. OK, you have a micro-USB port on your mobile device. That's fine. But the variation in ampage required to actually charge various makes of device is insane. I've seen some that will charge fine on an iPhone charger but not on an iPad charger and others that are vice versa. Ones that will work fine with both of those but not a BB charger and will say they are charging on a Nexus 7 charger but in fact weren't actually charging much at all (I test mobile devices as part of my job. I have LOTS of USB chargers hanging around). The only consistency I've found is that any device will charge with the charger that comes with it. Anything else? Whim of the Gods.

I've got 4 USB chargers on my desk here. Yes really. They're all rated at 5V. The ampage ratings are 1.2A, 2A, 0.7A and 2.1A. So a device that only needs .5A will charge on all of them, but one that requires 2A will only charge on two of them. One that specifically requires 2A will only charge on one. Standard? What standard?

Basically put, with the EU standard you can be sure the wire from your charger will plug into the port on your device. Can you actually be sure the charger will charge your device? No, not at all. So the 'standardisation' is in fact a complete waste of time.

'Scuse me, rant over.

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No more fun and games for Zynga as Facebook cuts apron strings

Jonathan White
Facepalm

Re: Words With Friends

Apple, are you listening? When you start putting Twatter and Facebook etc stuff into your iOS, include a switch so that you NEVER EVER EVER have to have something you don't want thrust down your throat at every tap.

You could just, you know, not fill in the bits where it asks for accounts and passwords. That works.

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Microsoft Surface Touch keyboards self-destruct – and more

Jonathan White
Thumb Up

Add me to the appreciation list. I've got a bluetooth intellimouse explorer you will have to pry from my cold, dead hand if you want it. Always liked their ergonomic keyboards too, although I fall in and out of love with ergonomic keyboards as a principle.

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Apple axed Brit retail boss for doing his job well - TOO well, perhaps

Jonathan White

The attitude to both retail staff and retail customers implied by this article is why people are discarding 'the channel' in droves for direct sales over the internet and why most of the big retail electrical chains are falling on their arses faster that a dog on an ice rink.

Here's a clue : I can go into a shop, or I can sit at home and buy the same product on the internet. For me to want to make the effort to leave my home, drive to wherever your out of town barn of a shop is and buy the thing at probably a higher price, your shop and your staff have to add to my perceived value somehow.

Expensive cables is not that. Expensive extended warranties with 15 pages of get out clauses is not that. Part time staff who are utterly demotivated and don't know any of the details of the products IS NOT THAT.

This it what characters like Browett and the business tactics lauded in this article get you. It may make for a nice short term profit bump but you know what it gets you in the end? Administration, that's what it gets you. Ask Comet.

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TalkTalk's YouView: Why no Wi-Fi?

Jonathan White

It's like Feng Shui, but with more tutting.

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Sky gripe grounded Freeview EPG facelift

Jonathan White
FAIL

Eh?

Sky Sports News hasn't been on freeview for ages. Dropped off when SSN went HD on Sky.

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iPhone 5: skinny li'l fella with better display, camera, software

Jonathan White

Re: Nfc

Serious question : How often do you use it? I rarely see anyone doing 'payment by bonk' and I'm wondering if this is something that's caught on in some places but not in others.

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Jonathan White
WTF?

Re: Apple! You just bricked my Zeppelin FFS

Err... how well does the dock on your Zeppelin fit an android phone? And why don't you just keep the phones you've got? What do you stand to gain from swapping that's worth binning a perfectly good bit of sound kit for?

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Jonathan White
Thumb Down

Re: From an android fan

'I honestly would have expected much more from the iPhone 5, even though I hate iOS and would never want one of their products.'

Seems a bit unlikely they'll be worrying what you think about their new phone then, huh?

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Jonathan White
Meh

"No 'very exciting' changes", "a little staid"

I'm not sure what you guys were expecting to happen. Smartphones are pretty much 'a touchscreen plus the bits you need to get it working that you don't really want to see'. I mean, were you expecting chromed exhausts? Integral cheese graters? A liquid metal phone you have to keep in a bottle? 8 core processors with visible water cooling?

They changed the screen in the only ways a screen can be changed (resolution and aspect ratio). They redesigned the rest of it. They fiddled with the insides. They could have gone to a curved back but given they had one to start with before they went square, would that actually be 'new'?

Seriously, what kind of things would you have liked them to have done?

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Why is the iPhone so successful? 'Cause people love 'em

Jonathan White
FAIL

Re: but I thought I just read that Samsung sells more phones than Apple.

'But that is because of my own view of the technical side of actually owning one.... for the less technical savvy person they are great'

I do love this attitude - 'Everyone would agree with me... if only everyone was as damn smart as I am'.

It's the kind of thing that makes us all so popular at parties.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 2 hands-on review

Jonathan White
FAIL

So handling it for a few minutes at a show in the presence of the company's PR representatives counts as a 'review' now does it? Wow.

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Cook's 'values' memo shows Apple has lost its soul

Jonathan White
WTF?

Re: Apple are evil. I've said it for years.

what? You serious? Mass murderers are only worse than Steve Jobs 'in scale'??

You're a looney.

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Jonathan White
WTF?

Re: Apple are evil. I've said it for years.

"Steve Jobs was one of the nastiest people who ever lived"

Just when you thought the internet couldn't get any more dumb. Seriously, you need to question your levels of perspective. A cursory look at the history books would find a hundred people who make Jobs look like Tinkerbell.

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Jonathan White

Re: @St3n

I'm sure they'll be able to dry their tears. With $100 bills probably.

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YouTube app wrenched from next Apple iPhones, iPads

Jonathan White
FAIL

Re: i think this will hurt apple alot.

'One of the main things that first got my attention with iPhones was the fact that it could play Youtube on the move! '

It still will be able to, genius.

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Apple Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion review

Jonathan White
FAIL

Up To Date

The 'up to date' program (where if you buy a new Mac between the new OS being announced and being shipped you get it for free) has turned into a rolling fireball of a car crash almost immediately.

Firstly, the page to access it went up too early. So people applied, got codes to download it from the app store and found they didn't work because the app wasn't available yet.

Secondly, the process they use to give you the code is this : They send you an email, with an encrypted password protected PDF file attached to it. They send you the password to open the PDF file in another email. The encrypted PDF contains the code. I assume anyone reading El Reg can tell you how utterly useless and idiotic this is. To make it worse, a lot of email systems regard encrypted archives/pdfs as suspicious, since they can't look inside them to virus scan the contens.

Thirdly, after the page went live too early, they reset the backend database. what they didn't do was mark all the codes they had previously sent out as 'already used' in the refreshed database, so the system is sending the codes out again. So a load of people are getting codes that when they put them into the app store redeem codes page, it says 'hard luck, that code has already been used' (I'm paraphrasing).

This is utterly clueless work. It's the kind of thing someone on their first day in the job would be utterly ashamed of (and it would probably be their last day on the job to boot). For a company with the resources of Apple to screw this is this badly is just... well, frankly, it's mind-boggling. How hard can valid issuing codes to people be?

(by the way - yes, I am one of the people who got a duff up to date code. But that doesn't make the work they've done any less amateurish).

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Apple misses earnings targets, Street reacts

Jonathan White
Facepalm

Re: No 'slide'

'Most analysts ignore Apple forecasts except as another bit of paper they have to file in the bit bucket.'

And most sensible people ignore analyst forecasts except as another bit of paper they have to file in the bit bucket.

Seriously, does nobody ever bother to actually look at the accuracy rate of most analysts? Most of them would dream of being as accurate as people predicting the weather by looking at pinecones.

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iPhone 5 poised to trounce Android, devastate BlackBerry?

Jonathan White

'On the subject of apps. I owned a Google Nexus One, now an S3 (and a couple of tablets) - all my apps transferred across nicely.'

Which is fine, but patently not what we're talking about. We're talking about transfers between platforms, not transfers between devices on the same platform. The latter is trivial in all cases, even the iPhone. iTunes music's DRM has a somewhat complex history but in the main, I'd say it's slightly more likely any given piece of music will in fact be DRM free than not. eBooks I'll give you, but I'm not convinced they're a huge factor in the general population and the other major players are equally as bad e.g. Kindle - which is a much bigger eBooks platform than iBooks is, has an equally consumer-unfrieldy DRM scheme. Video bought from the iTunes store is definitely DRMed. But then so is any video bought from Google Play. The walled garden definitely exists, but it's not impermeable and they're not the only ones doing it.

If you talk about apps, then Android is demonstrably more free than iOS, although it only offers more choice in certain fields (more keyboards and launcher apps yes, more games no). I wouldn't quibble with that notion in general.

Overall, the 'Android is free, iPhone isn't' rallying call is a massive over-simplification. It's a piece of dogmatism, IMO. Both platforms can be free if you're careful, and both attempt to lock you in if you aren't.

I have both (I have an iPad and an Android phone) and, largely, my 'entertainment content' moves between them without an immense amount of pain. But then I accept I'm more techy than the average and I paid enough attention early on not to get trapped by any one provider.

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Jonathan White
FAIL

'iPhone owners all say the same thing. It's easy to use.

Seem a bit stupid to me. What, can you not operate any other type of handset?

Sad, oh so sad!'

Yes, see those fools not making things more difficult for themselves! How foolish are they! They could be spending more effort doing the same thing! Now excuse me while I use my device that's slightly less easy to use than theirs, which thereby proved my intellectual superiority!

Good grief.

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Jonathan White

'You own an iPhone, you will stick with it; of course. If you should change to something non-Apple, all your data (music, video, games, apps*) is history. And the peer pressure gets new first timers into this voluntary prison (or walled garden, if you prefer...).'

er... this applies to the big three (well, big two and the one coughing his last in the corner) smartphone platforms doesn't it? if you have an android phone and you move to iPhone or BB, you equally lose all your apps and related data don't you? And just by the by, why would you necessarily lose your music and video? All my music is MP3 and my video is MP4 - it'll play on both pretty much equally...

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Jonathan White

Re: null and void

I'm not an expert on statistics but I do know a bit about it. Under certain circumstances (and with data that falls out in a certain way) it is possible for a sample of 400 people to be mathematically representative of a much larger population. It would be quite unusual though - i.e. the data would have to be very conclusive indeed, almost to the point where statistical analysis is irrelevant. I suspect however that this survey was not that mathematically rigourous and wasn't balanced in any way. It's market research in the very broad sense, not science.

I woud argue with one number you quoted though - the survey doesn't talk about the populations of those states in total, merely those who are planning to buy and/or already own smartphones. Despite the numbers being bandied about, that's still a very small percentage of the population, nowhere near 100%. So your numbers are also somewhat off.

(where did the white coat icon go)?

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'Backing out of a failed update really ought to be a trivial matter...'

Jonathan White
FAIL

'This smacks of a cataclysmic failing to test a backout plan. If it makes you feel any better, UK banks have to declare to the FSA what roles have been outsourced or offshored - there won't be any place to hide that.'

And of course UK banks are always entirely above board and never do anything underhand in the hope of making a quick buck and not getting caught. Oh no, I'm sure that would never happen.

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Google unveils Nexus 7 tablet, Android 4.1 and Nexus Q

Jonathan White
FAIL

'The not-so-subtle dig at Apple's outsourcing went down well with developers, some of who are happy to spend more for hardware that employs American workers.'

So the least useful most half arsed product Google have ever put their name on is made domestically but all the ones people are actually likely to hand money over for are, without exception, made in the far east and the people at Google I/O lapped the whole 'made in the US' shpiel up? I thought these guys were supposed to be the smart ones?

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Apple's iPhone 5 connector said to be a control freak

Jonathan White
FAIL

'As such, this could all be speculation'

You think?

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Apple 15in MacBook Pro with Retina Display

Jonathan White

Re: no bluraydrive

I have a portable thunderbolt drive that doesn't require any external PSU. There's plenty of them around (and Seagate do an adapter for SATA drives that doesn't need a PSU either). I'd suggest if you're picking holes, you find better ones.

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iPhones, iPads to be FULL OF FACEBOOK and NOT GOOGLE

Jonathan White
Meh

Re: Only us geeks care about OS versions

The graph suggests Apple users DO upgrade their phones. Unless you assume the vast majority of iPhones were bought in the last 12 months...

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SpaceX Dragon SPLASHDOWN in Pacific! Private space triumph

Jonathan White

Um... I'm very glad everything went OK and all but... is it really THAT big a triumph that after multi-billion dollar investment all there actually was was something people have already been doing for half a century? How is this as good as throwing a multibillion dollar investment towards something we don't already know how to do quite well?

The people involved are talented, no argument. And it's a feat on engineering, also no argument. But I'm genuinely finding it hard to get THAT enthusiastic about what is fairly routine stuff in space exploration terms. Just because some rich dudes paid for it to be built rather than everyone in the country indirectly paying for it to be built?

I'm genuinely not trying to denigrate the job the people on the Dragon project have done, but I can't honestly see how this is different to or better than what we've been doing since the 60's already. I'd really, honestly like someone to explain to me what the deal is because I'm obviously not seeing it..

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The more science you know, the less worried you are about climate

Jonathan White

Re: Off the top of my head

Yeah, I was considering that one. It's genuinely the only one I can think of, even though it's, what, over 30 years ago now? Which is why it's the one everyone thinks of first (i.e. 'off the top of my head'). I suspect it would prove very hard to come up with another one.

It's rarety makes it memorable.

Jon

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Jonathan White
WTF?

"the US government should seek to fund a communication strategy on climate change which is not focused on sound scientific information."

Has there ever been a government communication strategy that *was* based on sound scientific information?

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Eugene Kaspersky frustrated by Apple’s iOS AV ban

Jonathan White
FAIL

What, you mean Apple won't let him push his scareware on a platform with no legitimate security threat (well, other than from Apple itself)? They won't let him browbeat people into buying something which is functionally useless?

Shame on them.

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Steve Jobs' death clears way for rumoured 4in 'iPhone 5' screen

Jonathan White
FAIL

I have a feeling every change Apple makes to any product for about the next... say five years maybe, some useless hack will spout up 'they can do this now Steve Jobs is dead, because he vetoed it when he was alive'.

5" iPhone - only possible now Steve is dead

7" iPad - only possible now Steve is dead

'close' button a slightly different shade of red - only possible now Steve is dead

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Nokia Lumia 900 WinPho 7 smartphone

Jonathan White
WTF?

'You’ve launched a handset or two with a new operating system and they’ve gone down quite well.'

Really? Really? I suppose they've gone down quite well if you assume 'going down quite well' does not include 'any large number of people actually paying money for them'.

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Inside the Skynet ghost town built by bunker-based boffins

Jonathan White

To me, it sounds rather more like Aperture Science.

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Fastest-ever hydrocarb scramjet hits Mach 8, doesn't explode

Jonathan White
WTF?

Re: Makes you think though...

'Nobody cares that this technology can (and will) be used in WMD's'.

You're right, nobody cares. But then when (from that perspective) the story is 'country which already has ICBMS that can kill anyone anywhere on the planet in minutes tests new rocket which is slightly slower and shorter range' they're not exactly likely to are they?

Jesus.

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WD My Book Thunderbolt Duo

Jonathan White
FAIL

I've had more WD drives fail on me than every other manufacturer put together. Meh.

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Samsung unwraps 17in Ivy Bridge beast

Jonathan White
Trollface

'Apple may be considering an end to the production of 17in desktop-replacement laptops, but Samsung isn't. '

Of course not, it's got to wait for Apple to do it first, prove it actually makes money to do so and then Samsung can do it while claiming it was their idea all along.

Jon

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China backs Proview in Apple iPad trademark war

Jonathan White

Re: the shape of things to come?

Quite so. Evidence suggests trading with China is pretty much giving away your IP whether you planned to or not.

A wise man said 'sometimes the only way to win the war is not to fight the battle'. You can forgo the profit of trade with China but keep your IP, or you can trade with them for short-term profit and they will end up eating your lunch. Guess which choice most western company executives will go for?

Jon

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Jonathan White

Actually, they patently did do a trademark search outside the US and paid the people who the report said had the trademark a big wodge of cash. Just the people who the report said had the trademark (apparently) didn't actually have it, someone else in the company did. And they fell out with the first bunch.

If things had been as cut & dried as you seem to believe they were, it wouldn't have wrangled on for months on end.

One thing does make me laugh though - 'Yan Xiaohong, the deputy director of China's National Copyright Administration'

China has a National Copyright Administration? That must be the cushiest job ever....

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Happy 30th Birthday, Sinclair ZX Spectrum

Jonathan White
Unhappy

Some of us who are now in the 'have you tried switching it off and on again' brigade probably started down that path by making some pocket money on the side fixing friend's spectrum keyboard when the contacts underneath the rubber failed, as they did quite often (especially wasz, for obvious reasons). Pop the top off, replace the weird membraney thing with all the switches in. IIRC you could get them for a quid or so, and I used to charge a fiver for the job...

Jon

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Sony 3D PlayStation TV to hit UK at last

Jonathan White
Joke

'With such high demand,"

For 26" TV? AT £449? You sure about that?

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WTF is... UltraViolet

Jonathan White
FAIL

"Whether these options are available, and the details of how they work, may vary by retailer and by title."

In other words, it's a nice idea which the content providers will then do everything possible to f!ck up.

'Fail' because there isn't an 'almost certainly going to be fail' tag.

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HTC One X Android smartphone

Jonathan White
FAIL

'The same daily routine that sees my Desire HD need a top-up every 12 hours saw the One X needing the same,'

Having to charge every day = fail, regardless of anything else a phone can do or who makes it.

And, as an observation, if HTC's problem is 2011 was releasing too many phones, I don't see how carrying on doing the same thing in 2012 just this time giving them really really similar names is going to make help.

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