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* Posts by John Robson

822 posts • joined 19 May 2008

Toyota motors ahead with radar crash avoidance tech

John Robson
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And what if...

... not everything on the road is a car?

Will it detect people/horses/trees?

Will it recognise a corner and the associated barrier?

Will drivers just rely on it and therefore ignore anything not wrapped in a steel cage which is easy to detect with mm wave radar?

Get the cars driving themselves, stop faffing with silly add ons.

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What a clockup! Apple's Swiss clock knock-off clocks up $21m fine

John Robson
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"just the ticket"

But to where, at least in Switzerland you'll get there...

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Ofcom sets auction timetable: UK's 4G monopoly will end in June

John Robson
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Given the scarcity of players...

Why would they not collaborate in advance - keep the auction price rock bottom and then sort out a private auction/exchange themselves?

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Sellafield's nuclear waste measured in El Reg units

John Robson
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Re: Rename all things nuclear

"Political correctness can only take you so far. It may feel good for the people affected, but the average person isn't THAT dumb"

Then why are MRI scans so much better accepted than NMR scans?

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Singaporeans get hard token baked into credit card

John Robson
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Power?

Why not e-ink as a display - I'd have thought it would be fine for the job.

It could even mean that the location of the numbers changed each time, so that wear was even... (just step across by one every use).

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Torvalds: I want to be nice, and curse less, but it's just not in me

John Robson
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Re: "just saying what he thinks"

"Only in some ways... the tyre thing is critical and the driver cant tell the temperature of each tyre, thats why there are all those telemetry engineers. Hence why its a *team* event."

So did the engineer say "your rear right tyre is cooling down" - no he said "keep the tyre temps up" - that's F1 driving 101, and Kimi is a world champion.

If he'd been reminded on a straight rather than in a corner he might have taken it better...

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Pristine WWII German Enigma machine could be yours

John Robson
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Re: unbreakable

Really?

My understanding was that by the end of the war we could decode the messages faster than an enigma operator.

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Dry martini, shaken not stirred: Cracking the physics of Bond's martini

John Robson
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Boffin

Re: So much nonsense

"there may anyway be perceptible differences between apparently identical alcohol/water solutions, which can nonetheless be different one from another in the way the water arranges itself molecularly around the alcohol"

Scientists that state that probably also believe in homoeopathy. Homoeopathy is also supposedly all about ordering water.

--

Not quite true - Homeopathy is about water retaining that shape after the contaminant has been removed.

This is about the way molecules arrange themselves around a contaminant that was (at some point) introduced, and remains in the liquid.

Personally I'd have thought that and differences in packing (which there could well be) wouldn't be thermally stable.

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Chinese e-cars to turn London cabs green

John Robson
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Re: Where will the power come from?

But the point is that the power source will be cleaned up over time, rather than getting worse over time.

Battery tech aside (as that's unknown to me at this time) electric cars will gain all the efficiencies and cleaning options as they are fitted to the centralised power conversion units.

This means that you add scrubbers to one power station and you've improved the efficiency of thousands of cars.

Additionally it massively improves air quality in the overpopulated regions of the country - maybe moving parliament to Manchester (no affiliation, but it's a large city and far enough away from me) would reduce congestion in London rather nicely...

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New Mac mini: Business in the front, party at the back

John Robson
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Re: No it can't ...

Focus follows mouse is one of the first things I change on any Windows box I'm forced to use - I can then nudge the mouse between windows with my elbow, no need to remove hands from the keyboard.

Of course focus follows brain would be best ;)

It's really annoying having to click and raise windows in order to do anything when just nudging the mouse and then doing what you want is available.

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Fish skin points to better LEDs

John Robson
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Re: Offroad lights

'tis a pity the police won't ticket motorists for having blinding lights (or badly adjusted lights, or failed lights)

Particularly those hateful DLRs which are now compulsory on new cars - and they are REALLY badly dazzling.

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'Hypersensitive' Wi-Fi hater loses case against fiendish DEVICES

John Robson
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Re: Think of the Children!

Erm - isn't it just that the evidence isn't needed - after all, once you've detected the telly you then knock at the door and ask what's on.

So easy it's not worth reporting what gave you reasonable suspicion.

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John Robson
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Re: Inquiring minds...

There have been enough cases where complaints were made about new mobile masts...

Only to then discover that they hadn't been powered up yet.

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Asus doubles up phone-slate combo's specs with Padfone 2

John Robson
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Still waiting for a candybar phone with WiFi-3G bridge

Although bluetooth is an interesting option.

I'm off hunting

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Retailer leaks iPad Mini price list starting at £200

John Robson
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WTF?

Re: Off the scent?

IMHO the Transformer series bests the new iPad - has been out for a good while longer as well.

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British car parks start reading number plates

John Robson
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elreg

I got really peeved by that at BHam, until I realised that Long Stay 1 is free for up to an hour - has an excellent bus service to the terminal (or a 5 minute walk) and saves a whole lot of trouble seen at other airports.

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Windows 8 pricing details announced as preorders begin

John Robson
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System Builder -> VM install

Then you never need to transfer it - you just change the host system.

Given the choice I rarely use a bare metal OS any more (work PCs are forced on me, but one of them I run in a VM, some work servers need serious performance and are single function devices most are VMd)

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Australian boffins have a ball with lightning maths

John Robson
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Re: Ball lighning

As a fizzy cyst I approve of your spelling

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Apple files disappearing-feature iPhone patent

John Robson
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Samsung Galaxy phones....

Android menu buttons...

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Cloud company foraged for hard drives to stay afloat

John Robson
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WTF?

Re: Hmm...

Having used "RAID edition" disks which failed when used with a RAID controller - and then had a firmware fix, which required a reformat, and being booted under DOS, without a RAID controlled AND failed to increment the firmware revision number....

In (unmanned (by us) PoPs all round the world? Thanks Western Digital

Buy consumer grade, it's probably cheaper to watch a few fail and rebuild the data than it would be to buy industrial and watch slightly fewer fail and rebuild the data.

The rebuild the data bit is the expensive bit to get right, so the lower cost of disks is probably a good call.

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Western Australia powers up 10 MW solar farm

John Robson
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Re: Well Done Those People

And of course they need more power when: It's dry and hot for extended periods.

This is as good as running office air con from solar power - no need to put any regulators in place ;)

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UK's first 4G network just switched on - and it's not from EE

John Robson
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I think it does...

But only 9.6k

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Will you soon be fingering your seven-incher?

John Robson
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Audio controls...

Often use 10 touch detection....

On a mechanical devices I can, and regularly do, use all ten fingers at the same time, although the ability to have their freedom restricted by friction on a moving control is invaluable.

I can see "musical instrument" apps easily needing ten touches.

"Mixer" apps (of which there are several) also need highly multi-touch interfaces.

On a 7 inch device I can see limiting to 6 being feasible - certainly for someone with my ape like hands.

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Satellite broadband rollout for all in US: But Europe just doesn't get it

John Robson
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I'd have thought that a microwave link would be cheaper than a sat connection....

The only issue being that the licencing is covered by one company for the sat connection.

Of course you can boost vanilla WiFi to get pretty good distances too, that could work well for many rural communities.

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John Robson
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Re: Thats your problem right there!

IM is where you think it would be a pain?

IM would be fine - it's VoIP (Voice or Video) calls that would be intolerable.

But then there are often other solutions for Voice calls - even if BT aren't the best broadband supplier they are pretty good at getting voice lines to places. And you could always try phoneing skype ;)

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iPhone 5: the fab slab to grab

John Robson
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Re: I must be missing something...

> but the point of the article is that you should really be comparing the maps app on iOS6 to the maps app on iOS1 - or rather, the very first time that google release maps.google.com to the world.

No - Look at what the iPhone1 was - a well engineered device. OK, it had a few foibles (cut-n-paste anyone?) but it came out the gate in a good state.

If Mr Jobs had been alive I don't think the new maps would have made it out of the door.

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Toyota kills city 'e-car for everyone'

John Robson
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Re: Gosh. Someone gets it. Finaly

You might not need it.

But I reckon that most second cars do less than 10 miles a day.

The only killer is the cost - and that won't come down until a manufacturer bites the bullet and mass produces something. If they got together and designed batteries that could interoperate then we might see appropriate economies of scale - and the ability to upgrade your battery chemistry as needed.

Then all we need is a "dirty" fuel cell (yes, I just made that up) that will run on petrol.

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Space shuttle to slip surly bonds of Earth one last time over California

John Robson
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Why not inspire a new generation by, you know, doing something new and difficult.

Not by trotting out some pretty old* tech.

*Yes I know it's impressive old tech, but really - we're relying on 30 year old tech to inspire - what have the kids who were inspired by the shuttle first time round done?

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China plots 2017 mission to plan MOON COLONY

John Robson
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So we'll end up with three designs of wheel....

four if you count apollo as well...

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Apple iOS 6 review

John Robson
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FAIL

Re: Only for some though .....

You're not a long term customer - you're a one off customer.

A long term customer would have upgraded each year....

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Hacker uses Kindle as Raspberry Pi screen

John Robson
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It's fun!

This person might not have done it before, and it provides a nice low power display.

OK - I'm still waiting for a DSI-eInk (or hdmi eInk would be nice) screen for the thing - that would open up all sorts of interesting portable functions.

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Amazon: Pay more for Kindle Fire, smoke ads from slabs

John Robson
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Happy

Re: Good

I just don't allow most games internet access.

I'd not have an objection to them pulling ads from an "ad server" app locally - which has limited 'net rights, and be limited to using wifi only (caching a few ads for "offline" use)

So in general I don't see many ads, quite a few blank boxes though...

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Laptop innovator Moggridge dies aged 69

John Robson
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Re: "Taken over by Samsung"

...and...grid...of...icons....

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Amazon pitches cheap new Kindles for Blighty

John Robson
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Thumb Up

Just install Android then...

http://rootkindlefire.com/

Personally I run CyanogenMod on my phone, I'd be happy running the same on the Kindle - it just made my birthday list I think...

Need to run a side by side with the Nexus before I put one on the list properly.

Hmm - KFHD / Nexus

GPS vs extra memory

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Raspberry Pi production back in Blighty

John Robson
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Go

Re: Meh

Underpowered?

Really - you're describing a machine capable of Full HD decoding as "underpowered"?

You're describing a full PC that sells for £30 (add £4 for storage if you don't already have an SD card). A PC with 24Gflop (which is the RPi GPU alone) Core 2 Duo P8700 is only 16 GFlop.

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Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player review

John Robson
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Re: Nice remote

I'd like the remote for controlling RPi's around the house - but the box is just too expensive for what it seems to offer at the moment.

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Everything Everywhere bags 4G monopoly in UK - for now

John Robson
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Network sharing

At "sane" rates is required.

Of course how you define "sane" is anyone's guess....

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Sacrebleu! Googleplex insists Bush is still le président américain

John Robson
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Lies, damned lies and statistics.

And which does Google use for translation? Statistics.

Slightly surprising that Bush is still the most common translation for POTUS.

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The problem with wireless: all those effin' wires

John Robson
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Re: International power strip

My version is a cheap 4 strip UK adaptor, but with the 3 pin plug replaced with an IEC socket. Not been to a country I can't easily get hold of a "kettle lead", even in a hotel.

I also have a few IEC leads at home, pilfered from the bins at work, which means I don't need to find such a cable in Europe, or the US.

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Windows 8: Microsoft's tablet-desktop still painful to swallow

John Robson
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WTF?

Re: ?

Any why not do backward compatibility with a VM - heck, they could even do "window exports" from the local VM to the "host desktop" - a la X forwarding which I use quite often.

I'm sure RDP supports (or could support) such behaviour very well.

Makes backward compatibility rather easy doesn't it - and once the facility is in place you can use it next time you need to "break" something

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BBC gives itself a gold in 700Gbit-a-second Olympic vid sprint

John Robson
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Thumb Up

Freeview has limited bandwidth - you can't push everything over it!

I'm just hoping they maintain the same level of coverage for the Paralymics.

I had only two comments for them:

- They failed to use a "replay" indicator

- They left venues broadcasting empty - why not show highlights or previous events for most of the time?

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Murdoch pitches battery for renewables

John Robson
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Re: Energy density?

For a fixed install density is not high on the priority list. Just fill the inside of a wind turbine tower with them....

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Hobbyist builds working assault rifle using 3D printer

John Robson
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Re: For those w/o time in the military:

No - building *accurate* barrels is hard.

If the MythBusters can build a cannon out of gaffer tape then I'm sure someone can craft a musket barrel out of steel.

It doesn't need accuracy, just the ability to withstand about 10 seconds of full automatic fire before jamming.

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France: Forcing Google to police YouTube is a non-non

John Robson
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Really...

"When a match is identified rights holders can choose whether to block the use of the content, track its use by leaving it up or elect to take a share of the ad revenues generated around the video's use."

That's an interesting set of options.

If they elect to take a share of ad revenue can they then decided to take it down later?

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Being a skinny is much more unhealthy than being fat – new study

John Robson
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Joke

Re: I wouldn't have guessed

You need a lighter rucksack - then you could carry useful stuff

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Powering your iPad costs $1.36 per year

John Robson
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Boffin

Re: Plenty of loony units of measuments measurements

The scientist was called Joule, the unit is a joule, which is abbreviated to J

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Microsoft takes on tablets with keyboard-equipped Surface

John Robson
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Most typewriters had a shift key.

Multitouch doesn't mean mashing - it is always limited to sane inputs.

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

John Robson
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Boffin

Foundation...

"*Though in the Foundation saga this was only possible with vast galactic populations of the far future, with humans as numerous as gas molecules in a pressure vessel, and even then it was necessary to keep the existence of Psychohistory a secret."

Presumably you're not talking about the LOHAN pressure vessel...

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Grab your L-plates, flying cars of sci-fi dreams have landed

John Robson
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Re: Parking on a skyscraper

Or a smaller vehicle.

You could even suggest one with no tailpipe emissions, or one with no emissions at all...

(Excluding the driver of course)

"Over the hedge" (great kids film) has a lovely scene where the animals are gathered round an SUV - saying "wow, how many humans fit in *this*" to which the "knowledgable" animal replies:

"normally only one"

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John Robson
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Fly home....

If they are computer controlled (and frankly I'm not sure anything else is sane) then they can just fly off home until you need them in the evening - or to a local charging facility if they are electric

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