1688 posts • joined Monday 16th April 2007 14:57 GMT
Where have you been hiding?
"print" is no longer a statement but a function! For didactic purposes you should use the Python 3 syntax:
print("hello world") # and there's your simple beauty gone
Tsk, tsk. Programmers nowadays! ;-)
Failure is more than an option.
It's nice to see that the FOI page is a 404: http://champions.go-on.co.uk/foi
And that the privacy statement linked to from the cookie thing is the homepage. Informed consent means informing people before asking their consent.
Still, Mrs Fox has a nice dress on.
Seeing as Windows 7 rollouts are currently ongoing I'd suggest that no corporates are planning to touch this before 2014 by which time some of the bugs and the strategy might have been worked out. Can see some people being brave enough to buy a few tablets of whichever variety for road warriors assuming the necessary software is available and enterprise management is possible. But that would be in a sort of "Microsoft demonstrates..." environment.
So, MS have two years to stop wholesale abandonment of their platform in the corporate space. If you put it like that you can see that they still have room for manoeuvre.
Where to start
1. Samsung is making plenty money from Android. Like Nokia it's a hardware company. Definitely doable.
2. My own anecdotal survey on the local public transport of what people are using has Samsung at around 75 % with I-Phones about 20 % and the rest. A year ago I would have said around 50 % I-Phones, Samsung slightly ahead of HTC and the rest. With the SII and it's gorgeously large screen Samsung really has cleaned up in the last few months. They're not cheap but they are popular. Skinflints can join in by being the cheaper versions which look like the real deal as long as you don't look at them too closely.
3. People are used to I-Phone and Android UIs - they're close enough that switching between them isn't difficult. Apple knows this which is why they're going so hard after Android. Tough for them that many people to seem to equate Android with a sort of generic version of the I-Phone. Viz. airport security generally refer to my Samsung Galaxy Tab as an I-Pad.
But really it comes down to Every review says if you want a WP7, buy a Nokia. Well, who really wants WP7? Where are the campaigns extolling the virtues of it? I've seen nothing apart from generous reviews on El Reg and elsewhere praising the Metro interface for phones. But I know that the browser is shit: any mobile browser must be able to handle HTML 5 forms to be any use; IE 9 can't.
Re: Samsungs reaction...
Seems to be the default suggestion from "analysts" when it comes to ITLNH (interesting technology looking for a new home). It was the same with WebOS. Samsung has at least two OS of its own (Bada for smartphones and whatever runs on feature phones) plus Android and Windows and Tizen. You can see how they're desperate for more OS... Google or Microsoft as almost pure software vendors would make more sense.
Storm in a teacup
I think the BBC's services are so much more advanced than what's on offer here in Germany.
I've got a lovely Philips 6806, which apart from apparently struggling to maintain a wireless connection (Philips say it's the router's fault for IPMG-Snooping, I'm not convinced), has a fantastic picture. Unlike all the digi-boxes I've used in the UK the additional functions were not available from the word go. I had to activate Hbb manually and it behaves differently if there is a network connection around when it generally takes longer to load and looks a bit shitty. Indeed many channels don't seem to support non-network based interactivity: press the red button and get nothing. Personally, I prefer the idea of side-loading the TV programme onto the TV without a network connection to loading a castrated version of the broadcaster's website. This is probably why I have never once seen a promotion of "press the red button to find out more" since digital TV has been available.
In summary, whatever it is that the BBC uses is infinitely more usable than what we have on the continent. However, if it is to be some kind technological dead end, then it's probably going to go into maintenance. But unless Hbb gets dramatically better it's not going anywhere either.
Re: Meanwhile in Brussels
I believe Germany has in fact ditched nuclear in favour of coal
Then you are ill-informed. Coal has been being phased out in favour of (Russian) natural gas for years. Renewables are ahead of target thanks to the very generous feed-in tariffs we have here and effectively a swap with France with nuclear from them in the winter; and renewable to them in the summer when they don't have enough water to cool the nuclear plants. Though even France is going renewable with EDF busy offering free installation and maintenance of photovoltaic systems on nice new barns and free power to the farmers. Though, if they can get EU subsidies for nuclear then you can imagine the free barn programme being phased out pretty quickly.
Renewable energy might be of questionable value - I am in favour of it; the feed-in tariffs can be seen as a gravy train - but all those installations require people on the ground and I can think of worse government-sponsored employment programmes.
Re: Laugh? I nearly cried.
It's all in the negawatts: the cheapest power plants are ones you don't build.
Note, less consumption usually means greater energy efficiency - better insulation, lower stand-by draw, higher yield lighting, ARM instead of x86, etc. - rather than the return to a Luddite dark age.
Mine's the one with 9 W LED bulb in the pocket and the A+++ fridge.
Meanwhile in Brussels
The same department is, together with France, Poland and the Czech Republic, lobbying for EU subsidies of nuclear power. Unlikely to go anywhere because those horribly inefficient Jormans have ditched nuclear for renewables, massive imports of lovely French nuclear power during the winter notwithstanding. All this to say that if for every gravy train that gets retired another is ready to enter service.
But also Every year less ice in Canada. Admittedly entirely anecdotal but indicative of some kind of, er, climate change. At least for a part of Canada.
Originally wasn't IE 10 due last year? Microsoft's browser strategy is an epic fail and that, despite acknowledging their need to placate corporate IT, is driving people to adopt Firefox, Chrome and any phone OS that isn't Windows: IE 9 just doesn't cut the mustard.
Life after death
Aren't the Atoms the crippled chips that Intel developed for the netbooks that are no longer selling? They were also supposed to make their way into set-top boxes and phones IIRC. Seems that isn't happening so they're being repurposed as server chips. Crippled, of course, so as not to cannibalise the higher margin real server chips. In that comparison 6W is pretty impressive but what workload will they be handling? They might be able to virtualise but how many VMs will they comfortably handle? They might be 64-bit but somehow I don't see them being targeted for data warehousing.
We still have a while to go before the ARM-based servers arrive in force where OPS per Watt comparisons will be able to made. Yes, we know they won't be fully 64-bit but will it really matter for these smaller servers?
Re: Positive Spin?
From the article:
...Microsoft was trying to get Nokia to make a line of phones using Windows Mobile, and in return would make a version of Office to run on Symbian devices. Nokia wanted more; it asked Microsoft to use its Navteq mapping service and share revenues on ads that would appear with the maps. Unable to get the larger deal, the companies announced one to get Office onto some of Nokia's Symbian models...
As Office for Symbian has recently been announced it seems that this is what came to pass. Nokia has made an impressive turnaround and delivered Windows phones faster than I think many expected. This is indicative of the possible synergies between the two companies. In the same time it has also delivered some nice updates to Symbian but managed to throw market share away. All in all, maybe not that impressive.
Re: Gartner researcher can draw straight lines
Spot on. Really is just a bit of clickbait. Nice of Mr Smith not to include the link and waste everybody's time.
The tablet market isn't mature yet and there is still room for plenty of hardware innovation. E.g. whoever comes up first with a useable colour tablet for the outdoors is going to mint it.
Re: Does it really matter?
Yes, it matters. Find me a business owner who doesn't want more market share no matter how high their margins are. Even for a premium product like Apples market share is important for the attendant eco-system. This used to be Apple's problem pre x86 OS X as it was considered too expensive to develop the software for the market, though there were notable exceptions. The same could happen to Apple in China with phones. Gone are the days where, where the US leads everyone else follows.
Re: Stylus vs Touch
The ideal would of course be a combo screen that can do either stylus handwriting & sketches and finger gestures
Sounds a bit like Samung's Note which I think is doing well in some segments. Be interesting to see figures on that.
I'm not 100% on the handwriting recognition but you can't beat being able to scrawl stuff with a pen. I've got a Bamboo Stylus for my Galaxy 8.9 but was a little disappointed at how it handled handwritten notes.
Re: tax and insurance
Good question. The pictures have it with a full French licence plate which means that, in France at least, it's a car not a scooter. Expect governments to adjust regulations to suit policy objectives and budgetary requirements!
Insurance might be close to scooters and subject to the usual postcode lottery. Alun should be fine as long as sticks to his usual surroundings and keeps out of Ordsall and the Moss! You can just see this kind of thing getting trashed by any estate yoof...
Nice to see it getting such a positive review for the handling.
Re: Wonder if you have to worry about the old "Region" crap with UV??
For streaming the answer is likely to be: yes, the content is blocked. Along the lines of trying to find the cheapest place to source the content or watch stuff that isn't available in your country. Usual anti-customer crap. :-/
Downloads might work.
GPU shouldn't come into it.
The description, which appears largely to be quoting the press release, implies that the card is effectively a beefed up network card for distributing encoded streams across the network. Ideal for production houses, content owners and presumably content delivery networks if it means that media servers with largely redundant CPUs can be replaced by dedicated, low power but hopefully still cheap boxes. GPUs should only be involved in the initial encoding and decoding of those streams. But, as it's from Toshiba I do wonder whether there isn't a Cell doing the grunt work.
Re: This is David Lander
It's episode 6 of the first series - 4oD isn't available in Jormany - where an unscrupulous surgeon performs needless surgery on hapless patients including harvesting their organs for sale. David Lander was an excellent precursor to Chris Morris' Brass Eye satire of the documentary though there is a kind of innocence from the age before nowtrage.
I'd like to say "life following art" but find the whole idea extremely disturbing: organ harvesting does unfortunately.go on.
This is David Lander
Terrible if it's true.
Re: 2048 x 1536
I'm inclined to agree with you and the author that the higher resolution of the Ipad 3 is overrated and the increased power draw is a problem. A problem that will probably be redressed in a release later this year, I guess. But there are several points worth noting: the higher resolution does make for better text rendering which is easier on the eye. The problem with the Ipad as reading device is that it is not suitable for use in bright sunshine - for reading you are much better off with a nice e-ink display.
The Ipad 2's resolution combined with the form factor was not particular good for watching films - a friend of mine who is a happy owner of an Ipad 2 showed me with pride that it does show videos in fullscreen, but only by cropping them. The same video on my Samsung Galaxy 8.9 is fullscreen with no cropping and crisper but pretty much the same physical size.
Apple would have needed to bump the pixel density of the next release by at least 25 % to keep up with the competition. Having started the whole "pixel density race" on the phones they needed to catch up on the tablet. But HD (1080p) is probably all you need for gorgeous media consumption but then again, the 16:10 or 16:9 is what's required.
It is fascinating how Apple manage to dictate the terms of the debate and convince people that whichever technical feature they have mastered is the reason for buying the device. A good screen is not just one with the highest resolution - colour gamut, contrast and viewing angles are equally important but, as we saw with digital cameras, more difficult to market. Personally, I'm sold on the OLED colour gamut and contrast values over notional resolution. But that is beside the point. As Mr Orlowski pointed out years ago: Apple has become the master of encouraging people to sell their devices to themselves: I-Tunes promised to make it easy to buy digital music (as long as you had an I-pod) and the app store promise to make it easy to buy apps, films and books (as long as you have an I-pad).
Apple, as the article's author notes at the end of his piece, probably has done it again with the I-pad 3 - people will buy them because of the screen but I think his criticism should be noted: it does feel a bit like Nokia's N95 - technically brilliant at the time but still flawed; the nimbus is still there if somewhat dimmer.
Re: Stellar dyspepsia?
More like a bit too much of the "Stellar Artois", methinks.
Alright, alright, I'm going. Mine's the one with the guide to intergalactic beverages and the popular heliosical cocktails book.
In Register Standard Units, please. And I find the repetition of 400 billion slightly worrying.
The JOBS act which has just passed both Houses includes quite a lot of reforms. Just not the kind you might have been thinking about. A few highlights:
* "small" companies with under USD 1 billion in turnover a year will be freed from such onerous reporting
* companies will be able to have up to 2000 shareholders without having to publish their accounts. That they are currently limited to 500 is considered to be one of the reasons for Facebook going public
* unregulated crowdsourcing via the internet is to become legitimate
Sterling work by the investment banking and venture capital lobby, don't you agree? The next bubble is going to be so much bigger!
Don't agree with you on that. I think The Thick of It was considerably funnier and I felt it to be close to the mark. For me, it was the updated version of "Yes, Minister" highlighting how interchangeable all the politicians have become. But, each to their own.
Yes, omitting the part played by the lobbies and party think-tanks is quite a lacuna: ACTA and the soon to be launched "Big Society Corporation" being cases in point. Mandarins didn't dream up public-private partnerships.
I'm rather fond of a dedicated civil service.
Unbundling will be the key
Tony, you're right that the prices still bear little relation to costs involved providing them. But the proposed changes do include new provisions that have learned from previous regulation. The wholesale cap on data roaming was supposed to lead to lower prices for users. As this was rarely the case there is now a cap for users as well. More importantly the Commission is aggressively pushing unbundling so that you are not forced to choose between what the regulated best deal and something your operator cooks up that might be better value depending on how you use it. It will soon be possible to pick up a SIM abroad and keep your number or simply choose another provider of data services. Assuming the customer experience is smooth enough that will definitely encourage competition and drive down prices.
Finally, the regulation is also the result of compromise. The telco's lobby effectively through the national governments against any caps: Viviane Reding and the European Parliament originally wanted the same costs abroad as in your home network. It's progress even if it's slow. And pity those poor souls outside the EU who see no such regulation.
PAYG in the US
It's pretty easy to pick up a SIM: AT&T and T-Mobile both use compatible networks. There are plenty of MVNO who resell their networks. I picked up a SIM from SimpleMobile straight from SFO. The package I went with wasn't cheap: USD 100 but it did include calls to Europe for about USD 0.02 per minute and enough data (GPRS mainly on the T-Mobile network) for what I needed. You can also rent phones for the period your over. Worth checking out the websites before you travel,
The Phantom Menace Haters
I see your point: it was a massive disappointment but it sill had pod-racers and Darth Maul.
Independence Day and Jurassic Park should also be down with the worst but maybe they can just slip quietly into oblivion?
Re: smart net portal is well stocked
Opera is the runtime for the apps and also available as a standalone browser. Even though you can connect a USB keyboard I'm not sure you really want to use the telly for browsing. Better to have a tablet to hand, which you can also as a remote or for looking at the programme guide with the Philips.
Budge up, would you? I want my fair share!
What fragmentation issues, wanker? It's Jormany so it's SuSE though to be honest for the desktop that hardly matters. OpenOffice is a more than adequate replacement for MS Office in the few cases where it's required: many Jorman terminals are just that: Fujitsu-Siemens terminals talking to some host. Oh, you might mean they need browsers in which case *anything* but Microsoft would be an improvement. IE 9 won't run on XP so new hardware and software needed plus it's poo anyway. What else would office-workers need MS Windows for?
Security: it doesn't matter whether it's SuSE or Debian or RedHat all of the systems have tried and tested methods of rolling out security patches and a lot more often than once a fooking month. Of course, FreeBSD is the best of the lot.
As for support: if my own experience on the Windows 7 migration is anything to go by, Microsoft still has a long way to go. Don't get me wrong: it is a vast improvement but still full of issues. I reckon a locked down XFree desktop is easier to manage.
Re: Don't believe it....
<quote>It will simply be down to - does Android have iTunes? No. Does Android have Office? No. Does Android play all top games? No. Hence it's restriction to phones....</quote>
Let's take those in order - ITunes isn't a dealbreaker for many just a requirement for IOS devices. Amazon is leading the way in making its store available on whatever platform.
Office - no MS Office but things that let work with MS Office documents. I've hardly used it because I hardly have the need to work with MS Office documents but I've seen a few fanbois happily pounding away at the IOS office suite. IMHO Office isn't as important as it was a few years ago. Be interesting to see if anyone sponsors an OpenOffice port to Android.
Games - what is your definition of "top games"? Angry Birds certainly looks to be up there now but for impressive graphics there is also Sony's Android-based strategy.
Going back to creative stuff - Adobe is really pushing it's Android and IOS offerings.
No, apart from third-party support what's holding Android back from the desktop is the hardware. The Asus Transformer shows what is possible but is still too expensive for large scale take up. File servers, printer drivers, etc. still required but then I can imagine Android based notebooks (13" and up) and mini-desktops running with standard peripherals and dirt cheap.
We've only really seen one year of the Android tablets - Honeycomb was essential - but the mass market is now being addressed (Aldi is pushing the "Lifetab") and people are becoming as familiar with Android as they have in the past with Windows and IOS. Lone warriors who want to bring their own device to work with them are more accepted now - I know of two corporate IT policies which expect this model to dominate by 2015. Standard connections, like the I-Phone port needed to give this a push. Can't see that taking off immediately but I sense the opportunity is there for anyone prepared to invest heavily enough: Lenovo or possibly HP if they get their head out of their arse in time.
Too early to call in my view. MS does have an opportunity on tablets as you suggest, at least for the enterprise market. The consumers are already adopting Android in sufficient numbers.
Re: Windows on the rise in the world of embedded systems?
It was in the previous article on IDC's predictions linked from the article. Yes, it was pretty unbelievable and not really worth a read. There are some good comments from people in the industry who know what's needed and how much things can cost and how much power they can draw, etc. x86 will have a chance in embedded systems when Apple switches to it for their phones, something that seems unlikely at the moment.
Re: Does this mean ...
Definitely let the Playmonauts claim the new planets to stop humanity getting there and fucking things up!
Things are not quite what you think
It's worth noting that .org, .net, etc are not generic but US property even if they are just as liberally marketed. The second round (.biz, .info, etc) are more competitive and generally cheaper but also just a bit shit. I can't remember the term but it's an example of perceived value skewing the market. .com isn't different than any other TLD but is somehow more desirable.
Very true. The irony is, of course, that Murdoch originally only got the licence to broadcast to Luxembourg. Irony, inasmuch as it has been fighting tooth-and-claw to stop people wanting football matches broadcast say to Albania or Greece but whose signals are still visible in the UK. With the monopoly on the premier league, existing customer and conditional access Sky was always able to outbid the competition and sell ads on top.
The popular myth is that satellite dishes were owned by good-for-nothing, layabout scuffers on housing estates where they were more visible because of the density. Of course, that accounts for a large part of the traditional footballing public and now increasingly forced to watch via satellite due to the increase in ticket prices, but there were always upper middle class and up prepared to pay to watch footy but also tennis, gold and formula 1. Sky continues to outbid terrestrial competition if ever something becomes popular and Parliament hasn't banned conditional access.
Movies have always been a bit of an add-on. Quality series from HBO and co. is more important now that ITV can no longer afford to compete. Originally commissioned programming apart from the sport which is beautifully produced is still largely shit.
Re: Slippery slope..
It does make you think how the "tweets" are classed: expressions of opinion or publication. IIRC you can be done for (racial) abuse no matter where you are. Quite rightly so but you have to be addressing and abusing someone. But incitement to (racial) hatred is a bit of different matter and being a bigoted tosser usually doesn't count. Didn't Blair push something through under the guise of anti-terrorism that basically neutered the right of free speech?
The guy's a knobhead and his exclamations are despicable but I don't think the court's time should be devoted to this. If it is then thought-crimes will be next and then we're all doomed.
Re: Oh, good grief...
Like so many things the sticking plaster is preferred to a real solution because it offers so many opportunities: "Verified by SomeDodgyBunch" badges make money.
What does the article actually say?
"""a new breed of intelligent devices will take over the market and drive the current fashionable terms de jour: Big Data and "the internet of things"
Should we infer from this that all these embedded systems are going to be running SETI and the like because they are bored? CERN or JPL offloading data processing to Las Vegas slot machines? Sounds like the plot of a Douglas Adams story.
People who know more than I do have already pointed out how ARM is moving both down and up the embedded systems value chain with the M0 down to something like µW for real work and Tegra et al already able to do heavy video processing. If El Reg is going to cover these reports some kind of critical analysis of the press release would be appreciated.
Re: "Crap" Oh God yes, just imagine.
My future is filled the fear of "computer says no" every time I want a beer...
Re: Depends upon definition
Been at it about the same time - though my first connection was a null-modem serial link to the notebook. Fortunately, we now have micro-USB as standard. Cables are the way to go to reduce power draw. I currently use a mix of devices depending on where I am. PAYG dongles are often a good choice when travelling with a notebook as they tend to offer the best speeds earliest and you should share from the device with the biggest battery as tethering really eats power.
PAYG is the way to go once you find you don't use a lot of mobile data anyway. I used to have € 5 (for 5 GB) a month on top of my contract for data but dropped it once I realised I only needed it about three times a year and the network kept on changing the details. Also not networks are equal so you might well want to have a different provider for the phone and something else for data. Kudos to 3 for pushing that and building out its data network.
Has anyone challenged the T&C's about limiting tethering on a data contract? I'm not a network neutrality freak and I don't mind the networks throttling heavy use to make sure everyone gets a slice of the spectrum and I don't mind the restrictions on VoIP too much (it's a waste of bandwidth and they are obliged to provide telephony services as part of the licence and they have to pay for the infrastructure somehow) but I do object to pretending a website on a phone is intrinsicly different to one on a tablet or a notebook.
Cross-platform = web?
In one of his better articles a while back Matt Asay suggested that the future of app development would be HTML 5 & JS. The stats seem to be backing that up. Not good news for cross-platform systems like Appcelerator but it makes more sense for developers.
Other manufacturers already have HD screens in the works if not in the shops. So the competition is aware of the issue. Albeit most of them already have higher resolutions than the Ipad 2 so the difference is less marked; my Galaxy 8.9 already has around 170 ppi versus 120 ppi for the old Ipad.
Higher resolution is important for text-rendering and presumably makes it easier when connecting to a larger monitor. The main appeal for tablets is crisper and clearer rendering of text in magazine applications. The aspect ratio is wasted on watching movies as illustrated by the screenshot and that extra screen real estate weighs quite a lot. The competition should push the weight advantage as it is really noticeable if you hold the thing for anything more than two minutes.
E-ink is easier on the eye because of the higher contrast and lack of the backlight. Look closely and text on the Ipad will look nicer - it's a similar effect to different types of paper from newsprint (e-ink) to glossy magazine (Ipad), but your "newsprint" is infinitely more readable in bright sunshine.
Heise notes significant performance issues on things like Google Maps.
Re: Subtle withdrawal
Possibly, although the feed-in tariff model still makes renewables very attractive investments. It might just be that power plants of *any* sort - it's a bit naughty in the article to point the finger at renewables coal and nuclear are really expensive to build and take longer to come onstream - are extremely capital intensive and 7 billion is a drop in the ocean of the several hundred billion per country that is expected to be required to switch to renewables.
IIRC 100 % year on year is below Apple's figures, i.e. Apple's growth is not in Europe. More figures needed: are the figures disappointing because Europeans aren't buying pads in the numbers they are elsewhere? or impressive because Apple still has the market to itself? ComScore has more detailed figures on this, surprised not to seem them in this report.
Re: Re: spot price falling
The spot price is determined by the most expensive form of electricity - wind is already cheaper than gas (on the spot market where the price of gas is coupled to the price of oil)- this is indeed going to favour storage systems over gas for servicing the spot market. The feed-in tariff for wind guarantees the minimum price paid which has been a subsidy thus far. Now that this is below the spot price increased demand will reward investors in wind without increasing the subsidy.