1779 posts • joined Monday 16th April 2007 14:57 GMT
Ireland is neutral so having an Irish passport helps a lot when visiting many Islamic countries.
As for Israeli-bashing - what people really target is the Israeli government or state rather than the people. It is insane to align statehood with religion.
Nice to see how data protection has come to mean "sharing it with as many as possible".
As for posting anonymously it makes pretty much no difference for Mossad on this non-https, Google-infested site.
You've got to laugh
I'm not going to join the bandwagon of those criticising the design. Yes, it is pretty shit but I think that's because it's "inspired" by the London Olympics stuff what with that catchy "Race online 2012" title.
Just grabbed this at near random:
"and it has some of the world’s cheapest broadband prices"
Utter fail. Prices are never cheap. But even then without a citation it's bollocks. Even the "according to the MLF finger-in-the-gash study of two minutes ago" would be an improvement as demonstrable or contestable. As it stands unsubstantiated drivel and that goes for most of the pamphlet.
"Offline households are missing out on average consumer savings of £560 per year."
hm, at least we have a citation. Hang on it's from those gravy train friends at PWC.
Anyway I wonder what the cost of entry to those savings are and where there likely to be had. Add to that some basic research on how shit the disadvantaged are at managing their money.
"3.6 million low-income households are missing out on total savings of over £1bn a year from
shopping and paying bills online."
Cunningly repeat the above figures as a new benefit. Shit argument made twice is still shit and that's without invoking faecal mathematics.
Paying bills online may be convenient but it is the businesses who save the money not having to deal with all that papery stuff.
I could go on but have little interest in this reverse beauty contest.
Full marks to MLF for keeping herself in the headlines. Bound to be worth some little junket and I'm afraid we'll be hearing more from her.
@Andrew you are right about the Pentile layout - horizontal lines have a discernible crenelation up close. However, I wouldn't say that this makes the display particularly of text any less clearer. Though I've yet to see one in the flesh, iPhone 4's display I can imagine that in some circumstances the difference is likely to be marked - c't magazine has said text on the iPhone 4 looks like it's "on" the screen.
But the mere fact that Wave is eminently usable outside in the sunshine is a killer. And on top of that the screen is very smudge resistant - it has that liquid shine to it that you think will be a fingerprint magnet and it just isn't a problem.
While the Wave seems to have some teething problems - battery life and GPS perhaps chief among them - and there will never be as many as for the Jesus phone, this is a lovely phone that fits easily in the pocket. It remains to be seen if Samsung can keep the Bada API close enough to Android to make ports or cross-development attractive for developers. At half the price of an iPhone 3GS it's a much better phone.
How do you expect the maggots to get onto such food? Any eggs laid are highly unlikely to survive the cooking process.
Besides the fact that before the maggots could hatch the smell of rotting protein is likely to have alerted or offended someone first. Anyone remember The Spark's stinky meat project?
I find many of your articles on the media industry well-researched and incisive and have certainly made me rethink my position. Maybe it's own my blinkers but I find this piece of opinion anything but.
It is all too easy to find and pillory the idiots in the debate. But it is just sloppy technique to employ the same black & white techniques of the idiots to criticise them. To ignore the depth of the debate.
For example the following two statements.
"The policies of carbon mitigation are now unsellable - they mean political suicide. In an election year it makes all the difference: Obama wisely won't touch it, the only Republican behind climate change has turned turtle, and it helped cost the Australian PM his job."
The Economist, not exactly known for sandal-wearing, has repeatedly come out in favour of a change in energy policy in general and carbon tax in particular. Most recently in suggestions for the UK's budget: http://www.economist.com/node/16377180?story_id=16377180
The same paper also sees Kevin Rudd's troubles largely down to his decision not to pursue environmental legislation. Something that his successor, Julia Gillard, seems keen to change:
Not that The Economist is right. I am just quoting differing opinions, although the difference in interpretation of Kevin Rudd' resignation is striking.
In your response to another comment you suggest that synthesising hydrocarbons as a rebuttal to the idea of running out of fossil fuels. Again, this is just sloppy: synthesised are by definition not fossil. As long as we have the energy required for the processes, and in the sun we have a convenient source, we can synthesise as many hydrocarbons as we wish. Indeed this is now a central tenet of renewables.
Many "green" ideas are questionable if not downright loony. Critique and debate are to be welcomed and polemic shown the door.
IE 8 uses Cleartype for font rendering in Windows XP and Cleartype is very nice. Without it some typefaces such as Georgia look pretty terrible. You can enable it for everything through the display settings.
Some basic economics
1) those component prices are facts. Or, to be totally correct - it is fact that those are the prices of those components.
2) the cost price of an object is the cost to produce a new one. R&D, etc. are important but not when calculating the cost* though I'm not sure about the severance payments made to the relatives of terminated Foxconn employees.
So, it's stonkingly good business for Apple and all credit to them for creating such demand. And while it's an impressive profit margin it's still way off what you can charge for luxury goods. Probably just as well now that other companies are producing equivalent hardware for significantly less.
* Low-value products like cola may include advertising in cost, because without it no one would pay a premium price.
It's a wonderful device for technical documentation which you can annotate. Has it got past the stage of technology demonstration? Does PlasticLogic have enough people for this kind of end-user product development beyond the cool technology which is eminently licensable? The second generation of plastic is in the works and colour is in the offing. I can happily live with a device that doesn't do video if I can effectively forget about having to charge it for a few days.
Not accelerated yet
Both Opera and FF are planning to introduce hardware acceleration in future versions. In order to prepare for this Opera has completely rewritten its implementations to take advantage of core OS functions. The IE test suite is pretty useful in indicating what can be done with the new toys (unlike Apple's turd of a demo). Of course, IE comes out top but I was pleasantly surprised to see how well Opera performs in some of the tests - lower frame rates than accelerated IE but still reasonable performance. FF was mainly too slow to be useful and it looks like the FF -> Chrome migration is happening. Worth noting that IE 9 won't run on all those XP machines out there while Opera still runs on Win98!
@Microsoft - kudos for adding support for Canvas. Already a reasonably heavy user of it with browsermob's charts.
"Protecting against this type of attack isn't simply a case of "sanitizing" the single-quotes, as this excludes valid names such as "Brer O'Hare", in which a quote is a perfectly valid character."
Wow - back to 1998 are we?
Statement and parameters should always be passed separately to the database. Not that this guarantees 100% security as the database still has to sanitise the parameters but this process is a damn sight easier to isolate and test on a per database basis. This just leaves the application developer to worry about all the other possible vectors (shell access, XSS). So, roll on automated security testing
Einstein at work?
Sorry, but what are you smoking?
There are already plenty of headers allowing browsers to check for modified content and, dependent upon user settings, optimise page reloading. But this is of no help when you load the page for the first time.
As for a list of parts - well, yes, this might be nice in theory but doesn't work for HTML. HTML is a flat file data serialisation that might, or might not contain embedded content (images) that the browser can display. The list of parts can only be deduced once the DOM (document object model) has been deduced from the HTML.
Yes, this is horribly inefficient but that's how it works unless you move over to a different format for content - binary such as PDF which has a convenient index? or do without the DOM altogether, JSON? Proxies such as Opera Turbo do something like this to reduce both the initial number of requests and the time it takes to transfer. The only fly in the ointment is getting everyone on board,
Aligning brands with fashionable causes (was Live Aid the start?) makes this kind of polarisation inevitable. As it's fashion-based it is also not long-lived just long enough for the media to milk it to death before moving onto the next thing.
Germany is already heavily subsidising roof-top solar panels. However, the yield in Europe, especially North of "the line" - the Main in Germany and Loire in France - so that the subsidy is not really cost effective. Indeed the projected costs at the current rate of 32 cents per KW/h are projected to double the electricity price in Germany (article in Handelsblatt yesterday http://www.handelsblatt.com/technologie/energie_technik/solarboom-treibt-kosten-sonnenenergie-wird-unbezahlbar;2604469 )
The basic ideas behind Desertec seem reasonable but what's missing from Lewis' article is that the project is currently just a feasibility study. A high-voltage DC network across Europe would certainly help provide power more efficiently for everyone and should help wean countries such as Spain off dirty and inefficient energy production.
Germany's respected business newspaper carried an analysis of Germany's world cup game (ha ha) against Serbia with an analysis of the turds spurted on the meta-facebook wannabe, tw*tter. In a nod towards those other idiots who think you can make money on stocks and shares by following the plotted curves. This was supposed to be journalism, although you could easily be forgiven thinking that hadn't been discovered here if you read any of the sports coverage which flips between felching the heroes when they're winning to demanding they be hung, drawn and quartered if they don't win - drawing is just as bad.
It's so depressing that I need a Marvin icon.
"Apple levels of UI performance are almost impossible for a platform that is geared to a wide variety of devices and vendors"
This conclusion is drawn at the end of the article without any supporting arguments in the article itself. It is, therefore, merely a statement of unsubstantiated opinion. Not good. My understanding is that, at least in terms of performance, the Google UI is comparable to iPhone on comparable hardware if not usability. In fact performance is heavily dependent upon the degree of direct access to the graphic hardware especially on such specialised hardware as the ARM ecosystems where the CPU cannot compensate for missing hardware or poor coding as well as the bloated x86 can.
If WinMeHa is based on Windows Mobile then it's based on Windows CE. That means there's:
Windows CE and derivatives
Windows NT and derivatives - Windows 7
Windows Phone 7 - which in turn is based on the .NET framework of the NT line
Given the scope that seems reasonable to me although getting onto the same underlying framework (.NET) for all has to be a common goal. The comparison with Apple is a strawman - Apple notoriously doesn't license it's "revolutionary" and "magical" mojo so it doesn't have to satisfy as many customers - can you get it to run on some of the very lower power hardware common in the embedded market? The linux-based stuff is probably more of a worry but .NET based clients might be very appealing in vertical markets - clients can be tightly coupled with inventory systems, et al.
I'm not an MS apologist but MS is simply going through the pains of platform transition (remember Mac OS "classic?", yellow box, blue box, etc?) Getting a good OS for the non-Intel platforms is certainly a challenge but MS still has lots of appeal to the corporates wanting to integrate their systems.
Fair and balanced?
While I agree that most solar energy subsidies are grossly excessive the report neglects that most energy production enjoys subsidy of one form of another. Does your economist have the figures for the cost per employee of the nuclear subsidy?
Economically Spain's subsidy of electricity consumption through price controls is probably an even bigger burden but politically more difficult to remove.
As to the reference about digging and filling holes - this is perfectly good economics cf. both deforestation and subsequent reforestation be counted as growth. Doesn't make it sensible but it is good economics.
You're missing the obvious
Some kind of evil mad scientist has been working on piranhas adapted to the English, well Kentish, climate as part of a bid to take over dear old Blighty and use it as his base to take over the world...
... where's the Dr. Evil icon? muahaha!
Working fine for me
@Andrew - "it doesn't bugger up your existing settings". That's right as it has its own ~/Library/Application Support/Opera 106 and ~/Library/preferences Opera 106. Clumsy if you want to maintain your existing settings as there is no option to copy them so you have to do it by hand. OTOH this means that an Opera beta cannot trash your existing install.
@Dave Mundt - no memory leak on the 10.5 series on Mac OS here. I usually run Opera for weeks and memory use is not excessive and considerably less than FF. Have you submitted a bug report?
@J 3 - password management is a pain. I have a problem with El Reg but I think this is either down to blocked content or cookies (El Reg loves cookies). Not sure if I'm the biggest fan of auto-completion à la FF or Safari but it could probably be sensibly extended. Manageable key values? I love the new quick access to site preferences via the GeoLocation symbol in the address bar!
As for speed - it feels a close run thing on Mac OS between Chrome and Opera. But sites like The Economist are always held back by the slow delivery of the embedded adverts even if they are blocked.
For those wanting to try out some of the new HTML5 toys above and beyond Apple's narrow view Monday's build has a view links to try:
Nothing to see
Bing has always worked in the search box but I've hardly used it. Cuil is good enough most of my queries and failing that Goggle.
Bing was added to Speeddial search in one of the recent desktop team builds and announced as such. No stealth here and the competition amongst search engines is good for all.
For some reason Opera isn't "magical and revolutionary". It's just damn good at its job!
Hard sell HD
It's been around since the early nineties and repeatedly fails to catch people's attention - the eye really doesn't care about that much detail so you only the few geeks that get hard on whenever pixels are mentioned care. But distribution is a key problem and there is not a great offer of HD DVB-T (not slated for use at all in Germany for instance). HD has been around for longer for satellite and cable services but for the rest of the unwashed masses IPTV is probably the way to go. And if you have IPTV you have web clients as a secondary product.
OTOH I think this might be the first overhyped world cup. Not a few people I've spoken to are sick of it already. Sure, we'll watch matches but will we really care that much? South Africa is a great stage of wonderful landscapes, moving human narratives, highly paid gladiators playing in front of the starving masses... The problem is that this is too much Hollywood and not enough "Holly St" (Columbia, SC).
Shootings and kidnappings may be necessary to keep up the viewing figures.
Awesome frikkin' lasers
You can do anything with them but do these work like the bells of Unseen University? I mean does everything get bathed regularly in darkness? Is the sunlight sucked out of the room? Is this the solution to global warming? Point the gun at the earth to syphon off excess heat?
So many questions for our new overlord, Emperor MingMing, to answer.
Give the guy a break
He's obviously not very well.
There was noticeably less whooping than at previous keynotes - the loudest was the gyroscope which will definitely allow for some very cool stuff. The phone looks great - the display is fantastic and developers are making money. But the rest was missing the wow factor. Bound to happen so or later and as long as people are handing their money over for the toys and the "apps" they must be doing something right. Farmville on iPhone - I wonder if Facebook should worry. Turning the Jphone into a tamagotchi certainly sounds like a money winner to me.
The wifi stuff is just smoke and mirrors. Conference audiences do soak up all available capacity and wifi's management is pants but it still should have been possible to set up a dedicated demo-only network with minimal interference from the audience. Some poor bugger has probably got of trouble for that fuck up. Kudos to Jobs for thinking on his feet and offering it to the crowd.
Facetime on wifi only may have been a cover for some kind of LTE availability next year.
But Google IO has probably generated more buzz on the whole and Jobs' needless abuse of Android and AMOLED was a sure sign that he's started looking over his shoulder.
Which court case first?
Cisco already has an operating system called IOS. I assume Apple is paying for the name privilege.
Apple's proposed advertising model is blatantly anti-trust. There is no need to be so greedy.
Nice kit but still a disappointment and you're right about video-conferencing needing bandwidth - I reckon quite a few access points would struggle with it as wel. But a new system?
Lots of people know all about video-conferencing system but Cisco's TelePresence has already set the standard and someone who knows network infrastructure would have to be involved in any roll-out. But who really uses video-conferencing? It was fun to play with 15 years ago on NetPhone and stuff but the novelty soon wore off and hasn't returned.
Now for the disappointment - why isn't it 3D? As noted in the piece on the new Motorola phone - adding a flash and second camera and microphone doesn't really count as innovative any more. Apple has definitely passed the baton to HTC and others on this but will still make a lot of money from this. Thing is, what's next? And will Apple be the company to show us?
Gruber's valid point
Yes. http://dev.opera.com contains lots of examples. After all it is where the <video> tag debuted.
HTML5 isn't complete and Apple's support for it (especially the new form widgets) isn't complete either.
The demo is seductive but poorly implemented. At least the IE 9 showcase doesn't really on browser sniffing to work.
Certainly a good idea to dose the neurons with stimulants before approaching keyboard.
The irony is in the mock outrage on the scientific value of the report which so angered our HYS friend. It's a sort of post-modern, Ben Eltonish irony but, as it still puts interpretation at a distance to experience, it is still irony. The more traditional irony is the lampooning of the science rather than the questionable value of this supposedly new investigation into established fact - the body develops tolerance to stimulants.
Would that be "iconically ironic"?
God, I'm so sharp I'd cut myself if I could get out of this straitjacket! That would make a good icon for funny puckers like me!
Fuck me but you're dull
Lewis' article is not derisive simply nicely ironic. But you obviously don't appreciate the difference.
@Lewis lovely stuff. But what's that big word in the article? Is it another attempt by so-called scientists to bamboozle us with jargon while they are lying through their climate-changing and presumably pearly white teeth?
can be milked forever. "Shiny, shiny" trumps "value" every time.
I've got unlimited (throttled after 5GB a month and VoIP is not alloed) in Germany for € 10. Needless to say tethering does not cost extra works fine with my SE G900.
Duplex VoIP runs at least at 16 kb/s. This might be less on LTE as that it is entirely IP based and wouldn't have the additional overhead that VoIP on GSM/UMTS currently has. That isn't the real problem. Even at 0.2 cents a minute Google could not afford to offer the service for free (your argument) and that's totally ignoring termination charges of around 10 cents per call. There are millions of call minutes a day.
Sure, there is a huge markup on voice calls on mobile networks (total national voice flatrates cost around € 100 a month which gives you an idea of what the marginal cost is). The profit is why the spectrum is licensed. But the comparison with data charges doesn't hold water. Data charges have been reduced to encourage take up but the big problem (it's better to make some money rather than none out of the asset) with mobile data is cell contention. No matter what technology you use, you quickly end up having to ration bandwidth on a cell and most licences stipulate that voice gets priority with possibly severe penalties for call dropouts. LTE will let the networks manage bandwidth better, scale better and build cheaper networks. But the investment costs are still so large, that with charges continuing to drop, it doesn't make sense to build your own network anymore. So, networks will in the future increasingly be build and managed by the equipment makers and capacity will be rented to operators. In this model the actual details of the technology - LTE, WiMax, satellite, femto-cells - becomes less relevant and more varied offers such as guaranteed but premium bandwidth will arise alongside the bargain basement services as currently available for fixed line services. This infrastructure model does make more sense for Google and Apple trying to offer and charge (one way or another) for added value services.
Apples and oranges
It's true that the vast majority of IPv4 addresses are not doing much - they're allocated to various US government bodies and companies that have little need for them. A global reallocation of the address blocks would give everybody some breathing space and cost little.
That said, current NAT strategies, particularly in Asia where the imbalance is greatest, are starting to cause problems of latency and security. But IPv6 rollout requires a great deal more work on the consumer electronics side of things. It's less about the PCs and more about the routers, DSL units and particularly mobile phones.
Do the maths
Have you any idea how many call minutes there a day?
Actually all your calculations are crap. GSM might be 10 kb/s but VoIP is quite a bit more.
Mixed mode networks run largely by the equipment providers (Bharti in India is the model, I think) are going to dominate. Satellite frequencies and or wimax are unlikely to be popular enough for handsets but might well be used for backhaul or "fixed line" internet in places where cable laying isn't worth it. Costs have to be cut as the networks have thus far failed entirely to get the public to pay a premium for data.
"IP rip-off capital of the world"
Yes and no. Leaving some of the more debatable parts of IP that American companies love to protect, copyright is simply thought of differently in China. Anyway, if a company is that worried about this thought of thing happening then they shouldn't source their products there just "because it's cheap".
At the moment Apple is probably happy to think of "imitation as the highest form of flattery" with these underpowered devices. A faster chip and a smoother interface and you can see why they are going after HTC.
Is he majoring in CS or law?
It doesn't really matter. The <video> tag isn't really going to relevant to the mass market for at least a year.
Google's adoption of VP8 plus its decision to open source it with Adobe, nVidia and AMD on board will make it "good enough" if not better - bandwidth can be the only issue - MP3 isn't the best codec around but it's "good enough". CUDA and Steam drivers are probably not that far away and they'll make encoding and decoding go like shit off a shovel. CE manufacturers will love it as it means $1 (or whatever) less per camera and less paperwork.
What children really draw
By all means let some kids draw pigeons, Nelson, the lions, Eastenders cast, etc. and let an artist get to work on the results. Story? The story is the games which shouldn't be about merchandising. These things should be souvenirs for those who go to the games but I can feel a massive turd of a CBeebies series based on these failed bollocks.
Don't think Google will worry about patents on this. They've probably waited so long for the release to have that checked and co-ordinated with Opera on the release. By comparison with the ongoing Viacom case, where they are obviously guilty any patent action is small beer.
H.264 still leads on hardware acceleration but AMD and NVidia probably quite happy to add support asap as they often come out worse in patent wars.
Just because it's public, doesn't mean it's free
You normally have to apply for permission (from the local council or similar) to take photographs or film but this detail is normally observed in the breach for private use.
please, please have the balls to repeal the "anti-terrorist" shite especially detention without trial.
Lovely bits of kit
The competition, especially HTC, is getting good as well. Just wonder why Apple hasn't gone for an AMOLED screen. I'm a die-hard fan of my Ericsson G900 - it does pretty much everything I need but I am starting to want "something more". Apple's app lockdown is unfortunately extremely annoying and I think one of the main reasons for Android's remarkable take up. HTC Desire or Experia 10 Pro Mini for me, I think.
ARM Cortex A9 in the next (or next but one) Mac Book Air? Or will that be the iPad Pro?
Election in the autumn in Sweden and being harassed by the American MPAA? Got to be worth some votes.
ISP hopping is so easy for TPB and court orders have to be applied for each time so it's conceivable that they go back to cyberbunker again. At some point, some court may choose rule against the MPAA on the grounds of jurisdiction or unworkability or unsuitability - no copyrighted material is ever kept on thepiratebay's servers and the limewire judgement is unlikely to followed outside the US.
You mean re. decline in UK revenues?
The decline is nearly twice as high as in Germany.
BTW. Bill the article is pretty much copy & paste. Missing the reference to a one-off markdown in impairments also making profits bubblier than they would have otherwise been. But Calao seems to have settled the ship the Gent left in such a mess.
I think the point of the test is to highlight how much more we let on than we think. There are advantages both in being unique - less likely to be the victim of a known exploit crafted for the masses - and being non-unique - possibly more difficult to identify. Given that most people have fairly promiscuous cookie settings, cookies are likely to remain the id tag of choice. But, assuming you have access to sufficient websites, you could use this heuristic for profiling, presumably inversely as a way of excluding the masses.
Licence to print money
To answer your question - no. VF has one of the most highly integrated networks in the world. However, each country is exhorted to extract as much from the travelling public as possible with any savings from synergies expressly not being passed on to the customer. On the internal IP network country borders do not exist so the costs for backhaul are negligent.
Probably worth noting that the EU has set an upper limit for data roaming costs and also requested that € 50 be the upper limit before an automatic cut-off applies unless previously indicated by the customer.
The law which was passed a few years ago effectively makes providers of open wifi into accessories. The parallel is with leaving weapons unsecured. WEP is not considered safe in Germany and you cannot buy wifi hardware that it unsecured by default. Interestingly the court decided there was no liability.
There is nothing wrong with reminding the public of some of the potential risks that technology brings with it and encouraging a sense of responsibility. Worried about someone hacking into your computer? Securing your wifi is a good way to prevent this. Limiting liability will stop lawyers and the copyright industry making a habit of this.
Some additional facts
In a recent copy of the German issue of Technology Review there was an article on the research done by the Frauenhofer into such combined powerplants - with the gas coming from bio mass. The articile  stated that solar + wind + gas powerplants are able to provide all the power needed all the time.
This week the national evironmental committee came out in favour  a 100% renewable energy policy by 2050 without additional nuclear or coal power stations.
And this was without the massive (and controversial because bloody expensive) expansion off-shore wind. 
Lewis, can you please tell us again why we need nuclear?
 http://www.heise.de/mediadaten/tr/ (April)
Bring back the boffins
Dear Mr. Page,
with all due respect this article is pants. Scaremongering pants of the worst kind. If someone, and it's a bit of a puzzle as to who that might be, does drop an ICBM on the UK I don't think anyone will really care whether "we" can retaliate or not. And if being in NATO actually means that no one will honour their commitments then why bother sticking around? We can't afford much of an army anyway. Not that you can see Norway loading up with Trident and they've got resources worth fighting for.
As for your other hobby horse nuclear power. Well, this is going to be an ongoing debate but the fact is that even if new power stations were commissioned tomorrow they won't be ready in time for the projected shortfalls from 2015. Energy efficiency on the other hand can have an immediate and significant impact.
Space race - really more money for Prof. Pillinger? Manned spaceflight is still prohibitively expensive and of little real value. Don't mind upping our contributions to ESA, though.
Is nothing happening at CERN this week?