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* Posts by John Robson

845 posts • joined 19 May 2008

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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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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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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Cameron's F-35 U-turn: BAE Systems still calls the shots at No 10

John Robson
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WTF?

Hang on a moment....

Why are politicians making these decision anyway - surely they get a budget request from the armed forces, and say "yay" or "nay" to it. Then the armed forces sign some cheques to whomever they see fit (saving some for wages, and some for war - when they suddenly need to buy alot more fuel and ammunition than normal)

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Pirate stomping by Google et Cie won't work, says expert

John Robson
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FAIL

But the notice is still issued by a rights holder, not the courts.

Fail.

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Google's self-driving car snags first-ever license in Nevada

John Robson
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Re: @Dave 126

Given that we have to say "no improvement will be made" to thousands of parents in that situation each year with a fleshy bag behind the wheel I think that would be of more comfort...

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Cameron hardens stance on UK web filth block

John Robson
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Re: Perv list.

I am opted "in" on my mobile connection.

Because the cycling forum I frequent is blocked otherwise...

It's really rather sad that any politician thinks that this filtering is anything like a good idea. I'm not keen on the overt sexualisation of kids which is being promoted through all the media.

Nor the rampant increase in sexual imagery being shown over all media. The internet isn't different from other media - yet I don't see restrictions on TV or print media.

There is no justification for this censorship - there is justification for education, particularly of parents. This could fairly easily be done by schools/leas - who necessarily have contact with children's guardians.

When my kids start to be able to use the computers on their own then I'll implement some filtering at home, but more than that we'll supervise them, talk to them.... No technical filter is ever perfect.

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How politicians could end droughts FOREVER: But they don't want to

John Robson
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WTF?

Re: Math error

No - Maths is an abbreviation of Mathematics, a multidisciplinary science.

Math is something the USians invented.

(USians - because canadians, mexicans, peruvians... are all american as well)

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Asus: Ice Cream Sandwich Transformer Pad out in May

John Robson
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Cheaper earlier versions?

Does that mean???

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What kind of LOSER sits in front of a PC...

John Robson
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The page refresh is alot quicker on an eink device than a tablet after 10 hours of reading...

I barely notice it any more - I'd just like to see an A5 screen so that at least A4 PDFs can be displayed in two halves at a legible size.

Other than that they're brilliant devices (even if they are single purpose)

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Twitter poses patent non-aggression treaty to unblock industry

John Robson
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Re: Still better than the current arrangement

You develop cold fusion and you'll have people jumping over themselves to give you enough money...

As for ARM I think that licensing for production counts as production - actully even if that license isn't being taken up (sanity check required on license cost - must have previously sold at a comparable price)

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Lesser-spotted Raspberry Pi FINALLY dished up

John Robson
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The problem with live distros...

is that you can trash the host hard disk - as I have just accidentally done to my wife's machine.

I think I can recover it - but I read el reg. I'm not a normal parent.

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Death Star dinosaur aliens could rule galaxy

John Robson
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Re: Explains nothing

Probably wouldn't - unless it carried a VERY small amount - i.e. just a few molecules.

Then there is a (reasonable) chance that they'd all be L or D.

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Dot-London squeaks under ICANN deadline

John Robson
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Alert

Daft...

The concept of opening up TLDs is a bit odd - maybe we should be tightening them up so that people don't feel that they have to own them all.

Given that most people I know don't use URLs anyway (google does it for them, then click on a mail link or use your address book) I can't see the benefit.

Those 2D Bar codes are also becoming somewhat more common - and make (in the world of smart phones at any rate) a good alternative to a conventional URL. Mind you various TV adverts seem to come with a FB URL rather than a company URL anyway!

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iPad to reign unchallenged as KING of FONDLESLABS

John Robson
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Re: Transformer...

Screen/Battery/Boot times are all far better with the Asus Transformer than any netbook I've used, and better than pretty much every laptop as well - maybe excluding a MacBook air, which competes on boot times/screen.

But besides that the simplicity of use and the fact that you can just grab the screen and flop onto the sofa to "consume", and slot it into the keyboard to do some real work makes it more valuable than a tablet and a laptop seperately.

People here are a somewhat refined breed - but for *most* home users I can't see anything that I would want a PC for - I have a wireless router from my ISP, a network printer (or plug it into some routers) and maybe a small NAS, or cloud storage, or plug a USB drive into the router.

The Transformer can take external storage - SD cards, USB devices etc - it can push data to various network devices.

It can do word processing, email, FB, skype, twitter, games, media, browsing etc...

NB - I actually recommended that my parents get one - and they have. I really like it, although admit that the keyboard would take a few hours to get used to for serious work.

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John Robson
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Transformer...

In my eyes is a game changer.

I can't think why I'd buy a laptop any more.

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Hands on with the Huawei Ascend G300 low-cost Android phone

John Robson
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Joke

Corners Cut???

Let's hope they're not curved ....

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Nokia drops Lumia 900 price to $0 in response to bug outrage

John Robson
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Joke

You're making it wrong...

unlike certain other manufacturers...

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Virgin Media's latest throttling rules

John Robson
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VPNs

need to be excluded for home working to be possible.

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Linux 'internet of things' gizmo ships

John Robson
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Re: Too expensive.

Profit - and cloudy infrastructure...

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Raspberry Pi supplier coughs to ship date delay glitch

John Robson
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Re: Prototypes are never CE marked

They've already sold the first 10k - they can't sell them again.

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John Robson
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Boffin

Re: Bureaucracy

No they weren't unaware - but dev boards are frequently not tested. The plan was to test the educational release (i.e. the cased release) later in the year.

The media got a bit excited, the foundation had to offload the distribution (and scale up production).

They're no longer dev boards by any reasonable metric.

RS and Farnell are (annoyingly, because I'm in the lucky 10k) doing the right thing.

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Chrome beats IE market share for one day

John Robson
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Joke

Re: "Chrome catching IE slowly"?

Firefox users are unemployed, or workaholics?

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Nokia invents teeny throbbing tattoos to make your skin crawl

John Robson
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Boffin

Re: MRI + metal tattoos

They're actually alot more rigorous behind the scenes. But you are right - they are an entertainment show - scientific rigour doesn't make for good TV.

The Myth they actually debunked was "will your tattoo explode if you are given an MRI"

http://dsc.discovery.com/videos/mythbusters-exploding-tattoo-minimyth.html

The results were that they managed a little excitement with bottles of doped ink - but nothing from any normal (or doped) tattoo.

Therefore they "busted" the "myth" that a decorative tattoo always explodes under MRI - not whether they could be heated slightly.

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FAA mulls scrapping in-flight iPad, Kindle ban

John Robson
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WTF?

Never had an issue

on any (european) flight with reading the kindle from boarding to leaving.

To be fair the kindle isn't actually DOING anything different in "reading" mode from "standby" mode - with the exception of a few (infrequent) page turns - I can't envisage those causing any significant RF.

PS - Yes the wireless was off - it always is unless I'm actively wanting to connect to something over WiFi.

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UPDATE: GAGA team hunts down grass-smoking ROBOT

John Robson
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Go

IR retroreflectors?

I'd have thought that a wiimote style collection of IR beacons around the lawn and a decent camera on the robot would have done quite well.

How undulating is the lawn - From any point on my lawn I can see the two top corners of the house (i.e. ideal locations for beacons/reflectors)

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Mobile banking security bypassed in fiendish malware blag

John Robson
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WTF?

Why do OTA OTP not have an associated PIN?

Oops - TLA overload....

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Ambulance satnav not to blame for asthma attack boy's death

John Robson
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Stop

But would they have been quicker with a paper map?

Or any other alternative?

Surely that's the question to ask...

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Sub-£400 svelte lappies hurled in Ultrabook preemptive strike

John Robson
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"“All notebooks in five years’ time will look like Ultrabooks; it’s just the way things are going,” report author Daniel Ashdown told The Reg at the time."

Really?

He can't see any use cases for any other format?

Personally I like my serial port, it's useful for a variety of things which aren't going to change, I like having an optical drive in some machines. If I don't need those, then I'll get a tablet (at the moment a transformer)

Most maybe - but I doubt all

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Powerful, wallet-sized Raspberry Pi computer sells out in SECONDS

John Robson
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WTF?

Re: Re: Re: @ Probing analyst (PS)

Why lock it when the plan is for every student to have their own? The case will (for the educational version) be included in the price. I have knowingly bought a device without a case...

I have a great keyboard with a mini USB hub, that'll deal with the storage - or you could lose the mouse. I mean, who needs them? :)

Personally I have umpteen keyboards/mice lying around, and with networked storage (or even just a second partition on the SD card) I don't need more. An unpowered hub might be useful - maybe £2?

Monitor? I'll be using my telly thank you. A DVI-HDMI convertor might make it's way into a kit if I do buy a second for my friends kid.

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