1695 posts • joined Monday 16th April 2007 14:57 GMT
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And if not then user's preferences must be respected by the MUA. Apple Mail is still a pale clone of Postmaster and way behind most other mail clients except if you think "templates" are important. And, why oh why, in Apple's new service oriented world does Mail have to start in order to send a calendar invitation? This should be configurable through an API.
Opera Mail rocks - fast full-text search by far.
Poor quote, Ms Hormone
It should "Don't get mad, get even" From a great film with Terry Thomas and Ian Carmichael.
Who gives a fuck about the rest? It's just Daily Mail style nowtrage. Anybody who thinks it'll change by voting Labour out is a Daily Mail reader.*
* filthiest scum on the planet if not in the in the multiverse. The Sun is a comic that no one takes seriously.
PS. Is there a munternet?
We'll all want one whether it works or not.
@ J 3 don't tell anyone. CDs were nearly always cheaper to make than vinyl, DVDs were definitely always cheaper than cassettes but that didn't stop the public fighting to be bum-raped by the industry. The basic argument is that we're prepared to pay extra for convenience. So we were supposed to love downloads so much that we would pay extra for them. Pity for the industry that the very changes that allow them to increase their margins, let others in on the act. Once they realised that they crafted the MPCA (or whatever it is) to save us from ourselves!
iPhone owners actually use the phone?
I now know quite a few people with a JesusPhone and they are mainly intelligent. But when it comes to their toy the intelligence seems to cut out. They love it so much they seem to be prepared to put up with all kinds of shit (higher tarriffs, poor service, etc.) for the privilege of owning.
Kudos to Apple for coming up with the ultimate McGuffin.
All you can eat?
"the average laptop consumes about 13GB every 30 days or so."
If that was all that then it wouldn't really be a problem: it's only about 20 MB an hour so not much more than 900 MHz GSM can guarantee, assuming my mental arithmetic isn't totally buggereed.
But, of course, there is Paris' law: porn always expands faster than the available bandwidth. (Wish I had a good euphemism for that). And, to extend the tenuous metaphor, bandwidth bursts don't last for very long: we get through our GB in a couple of hours at most.
What about some facts?
If it's really a tax it's almost impossible to ring fence - tax goes straight into the budget. Easier to ring fence levies but you do have to have a Quango to manage it (the key is the n in Quango) and you do then have to decide who to give it to to get the work done. It is generally not a good idea to tell BT, who thanks to the moronic privatisation under Maggie actually own most of the cable in the country, that they'll get a couple of billion if they promise to extend it to the more rural areas. Best bet might be to get regional and local councils award it to competing bidders to build and operate but not own - in many cases wireless links to local exchanges might make more sense. Some kind of measurable targets with incentives and penalties are probably a good idea as are studies of how it's done elsewhere.
More than meets the eye
Silverlight is about extending the Microsoft reach outside of Windows to customers who may never (return to) use Windows. As reviews on El Reg have shown it seems to be a real platform for developing those "must have" browser-based apps that are all the rage. As Francis Vaughan points out the threat of non-Intel hardware and non-MS operating systems may actually emerge next year. Silverlight will make it easier for MS to sell an onliner version of Office and getting Intel to do the port to Linux + Atom doesn't stop them working on their own port to Linux + ARM or maybe just iPhones. Office is a tremendous revenue generator for MS and a lot cheaper to support than operating systems. Google and Adobe are the new enemies.
Interesting that the focus of the article is of the number of people you can sack if you move to open source. This sounds counter-intuitive as actively participating in open source projects definitely requires more resources as just buying updates. More information on the relation with external shops and support would be helpful as would details about application complexity before and after - many vendors' model unfortunately means that companies buy a lot more than they need and, even worse, often the wrong bits of kit and then spending lots of time and money trying to get them to work. One of open source's virtues can be providing tools that are really suitable for the task in hand.
The problem isn't the controller but the cable
In order to offer "backwards compatability" and thus not piss off all the people with existing equipment USB 3 plugs are physically compatible with USB < 3. However, as this is basically done by wrapping 2 in 3 it makes the cables and connectors fiddly and expensive. Better to have gone for a new connection + adapter for legacy or put 2 + 3 ports next to each other. eSATA has the advantage of being here now and being cheaper to implement.
By the time they get to Bethlehem the circus may well have left town.
There's no such thing as bad publicity
Yes, yes, it's a research project very nice and all that and aren't Google nice for letting you play with it.
Or is this just an attempt by Google's PR team to deflect attention away from it's real business, especially All your books are belong me.
@ Bill Gould - is Outlook any better?
Sharepoint is a dog to work with and fucking expensive for enterprise. I'm not over the moon with Notes but it does do some things very well.
Long term: this stuff is going to commodified.
How much is still iDEN?
The argument about iDEN gets trotted up again and again but four years on, how many cells are iDEN only? Actually the only real question is whether the networks overlap a lot or not. As for the price - does anyone remember what the Telekom paid for Voicestream back in those heady days? USD 10 milliard sounds like a bargain in comparison.
Like so many chants (except the ones about Lids) there is no basis to it at all - and I think there is some grudging respect for Wenger in the red part of Manchester, at least for the style of football the Arse play - and I'll admit to being a little taken aback myself when I heard it the first time:
@ El Reg do we get a three stripes and a three sails icon for our football moments?
Overall a reasonable review
Experience with MacOS obviously lacking - the magnification of the dock used to be on by default but I guess it got disabled as it's distracting eye candy. Shadows and highlighting are much more effective. In fact the only eye candy that Apple refuses to tone down are the fruit pastile traffic lights on the window bar. The rest of the magic mushroom trip that was Mac OS X has fortunately gone as it reaches maturity.
For office compatability use either OpenOffice.org or the real deal. I don't know anyone who bothers with iWork - despite it's undoubted merits. Either you want "free and good enough" (I routinely exchange MS Office documents that I've worked on in OO.org) or "expensive but perfect", paying for "okay" doesn't fit inbetween.
I'd agree with you that Windows 7 is looking pretty good even if font rendering in Mac OS is still superior. Fortunately 7 runs fine as a guest OS.
Nuclear plant for Lewis?
Are all these articles really just about Lewis getting his very own nuclear reactor? As others point out:
1) it's not about saving the planet - if the Vogons do turn up and want to demolish it there's fuck all we can do that.
2) it's never really been about climate change. Most of the industrialised world appears unlikely to suffer dramatically in most scenarios, unless another ice age is provoked. But we might suffer in the change in other countries produces significant population displacement.
3) "Climate change" is just a smoke screen for energy and resources policy.
4) we'll need the oil for other things
Anything the Americans can do...
A similar image from the wonder Miravi service from ESA (warning 3 MB JPG)
Miravi has the advantage of providing images in near real time around the world. Pity they haven't got round to wrapping it in any kind of nice service so you can just enter a location and get pictures from the area around it. Probably the reason why it gets so little public attention. When the German telly was covering the Athens' fires they resorted to the cheesy Google Earth to zoom in on the area around Athens but, "look, no clouds".
Unite - better when it's ready
Given how little testing Unite has had, as it was only included in the alpha's a couple of months ago and had a few changes since then, it makes sense to add it "when it's ready" and it's in the Opera 10.10 betas.
For most people Opera Turbo is probably of more immediate use if you're on a slow connection. It's a USP that's not easily copied by the Firefuckers.
It's early days yet.
I think HTML 5 will get pretty good take up as it allows developers to do some things a lot better than before and it degrades pretty well.
Google has a lever with all the Google Mail uses out there desperate for anything to run faster. Step up Chrome which is already being plugged on sites like YouTube but we can expect the marketing activities to pick up, particularly if they get more ISPs like Virgin selling them users. While it will be easy enough to work around browsers so the user hardly notice I think we might well see the return of "Works best with..." signs on sites. Of course, if they ever get content owners to agree they could work on exclusive content sites such as movies in full HD paid for entirely by advertisting.
While Adobe probably isn't looking forward to the loss of the lucrative server business, they've got a few years yet. Anyway, as a tools vendor, they're ideally placed to offer their tools for the HTML 5 world. Plus ça change, plus ça même chose, as they say.
"The social ills of proprietary software"?
The FSF routinely spout shite but this is remarkably poo even for them. Fortunately, while it might appeal to the zealots, everyone else will laugh it off.
Open source software should be used on its merits. Microsoft et al. should be punished for their anti-competitive practices but still allowed to sell their software.
re. battery life
The ARM design is more efficient than x86 because it uses less transistors to do the job. Intel's engineers have done amazing things but their main feats have been about adding more and faster RAM for the different caches. As that is all DRAM it constantly needs power. So for systems that are idling a lot, which is what most of our computers do most of the time, there is a lott to be gained with better chip design. Different matter entirely if you're playing video games or encoding/decoding video but again specialist designs will deliver better performance per Watt.
re. What is the point
The screens are non-volatile and high-contrast so they are legible in nearly all light environments from bright sunshine to midnight and they don't use power to display. The higher contrast makes them preferable to computer screens for reading.
The capacity means you can keep common reference works on them and have them with you all the time, great if you travel a lot for work. Standardised asset management - whether you like the DRM or not - just makes it easier to add and remove content from the device.
I've only seen one in real life and it looked very compelling - about the size of a 200 page paperback. I've pretty much stopped buying books apart from reference manuals and am seriously considering one of the second edition. I don't think 3G is a must have argument, yet but I do like the idea of automatically charging up my favourite plublications such as The Economist or The Register so that I can read it when I have some "inbetween" time.
It's taken Apple a long time but the more NextStep and the less Classic the better. I assume there is still some carbon code in there but getting rid of it in the Finder and anything that's derived from that should make a whole lot of things snappier and easier to work with.
The pricing is interesting as it looks more and more like OSes are being commodified. Mac users are mainly hardware customers anyway so probably about 50% of customers will have SnowLeopard within 12 months. It would be a pity about the PowerPC users if there weren't so few of them left. While you're right to point out that could benefit the most from optimisations they've had optimised PowerPC code all the time. A great many users won't benefit significantly from changes since Tiger as long as their applications run. The move to through and through coacoa will cause resentment for some application users who might be considering an application upgrade but resent having to upgrade application + OS. Except if it's Photoshop the price of the OS is going to pale against the price of the upgrade and the benefits of pure coacoa stacks and huge memory addressability might be very compelling.
Back to commodification: Apple, please bite the bullet and integrate MacPorts into the system.
China's go it alone
@AC: One reason why China is developing its own standards is to avoid the licence payments for the other technologies. Seeing as now most phones and an increasing amount of the the rest of the network components are more or less entirely made in China that might give Chinese manufacturers the clout they need in future discussions - get the other technology for free or use their own and threaten to export it. I think there is something similar with high definitiion video.
Consumers don't care about the technology, they just want stuff to work - ie. there phone to be usable wherever they are. GSM allowed component manufacturerers (Qualcomm, TI, Infineon, et al.) to guarantee that roaming would work pretty much around the world. The success of mandated GSM technology in Europe guaranteed economies of scale for the network manufacturers which gave them advantages in new markets and even allowed them to challenge in America's fragmented market - which had survived because it was recognised that people don't roam half as much as adverts would suggest and providing good *mobile* coverage in subscribers' key locations - home, way to work, airports was sufficient until the success of mobile phones turned a luxury into a commodity which (suddenly) has to work everywhere and all the time.
What a pile of shit.
What do browsers have to do with virtualisation support? Why do browsers need to access more than 4GB of contiguous RAM?
The whole raison d'être beind x86_64 and the for it's success over pure 64 bit architectures like Itanium is to allow 64 bit applications which need the memory, such as databases or video editors, to coexist with 32 bit applications and drivers with minimum perfomance impact.
The real question is
Which is better for fuelling vamire lust: hydrogen? or uranium?
It's the owners responsibility
The user cannot necessarily tell whether they may use a network or not and the wireless specification allows devices to connect to open networks. I couldn't give a toss about "social" aspects of open networks. The fact is that leaving your network open for anyone to get on is a security and legal risk - what happens if someone using your network engages in illegal activity be it sharing copyrighted material, pornography or malicious hacking of other systems? How will you demonstrate your innocence? In Germany having an open network can make you an accessory; breaking into a secured network (WEP hardly counts) is a crime.
Wireless networking devices must have security enabled by default. Cars have locks and so should networks.
Bashing Microsoft / Boosting Apple
Windows Mobile has been crap for ages but the licensing has be attractive enough to encourage manufacturers. Microsoft won't be that happy about Apple's continued success of it the "i" product line but is probably significantly more worried about HTC's Android release. HTC did more than any other company to demonstrate that, despite their drawbacks, Windows Mobile devices could even be cool. And now they're off to Android. But Windows Mobile has never been important to Microsoft for revenue. For years revenue has been "Office, Offifce and Office" which is why they are probably pouring resources into the online version of it.
The iPhone, interestingly enough, may offer Microsoft the same kind of chance that NT eventually offered IBM and that Google has been so successful - a great platform for its other "assets" which is probably why the Bing wrapper is now available for Objective C.
As for market share - Vista has been an utter disaster for Microsoft and they still own the world. Windows 7 is shaping up very nicely for them. Apple is still growing but if those developing markets you mention are so important then the free software stack is the one to watch.
For consumers it's nice to see a bit of competition for once.
@My New Handle
What kind of network is it that we want deploying?
The GSMA has provided the interoperability and scale that has made this kind of development possible. And, yes, the base station technology has become completely commodified but that wasn't the case 20 years ago when the first networks went up.
Real time network management, cell-handovers, billing info, etc. still have to be done but the move of the vendors to providing the whole network is indeed part of that change. And consider the time, labour and legal costs actually building the damn network.
All this so we can jabber from coast to coast. Yes, the licences were largely licences to print money but nobody forced to buy and use mobile phones.
As the article suggests the real use case might be installing "field networks" in remote areas.
It's the end of the world
But the media persists in bombarding with hippie myths like climate change! Thank god El Reg still manages to cover important issues!!!
Isn't Birmingham offering degree 2.0?
Thanks to Caroline for this nugget of wisdom:
"From her research she believes that texts are much more about maintaining and building relationships rather than passing on raw facts."
Well, fucking fancy that. Who'd have thought it? Or: the redundancy of much communication is a well-researched and understood area (in any university outside Birmingham). People send texts /twats / IRC to pretend they have real human relationships.
I hope she did a bit more that relatively trivial linguistic analysis for three years. An automatic Twat-O-Tron parser would have been useful, for a start.
Steve's evil empire
The legal action in Norway and the EU illustrate that Apple's position is anti-competitive. iTunes is not part of the iPod product range but available separately as software promoted as allowing users manage their digital media library. By actively preventing other companies from hooking their hardware into the software Apple is acting in an anti-competitive manner.
The only weird thing is why Palm is approaching the industry body. Far better to jump on the existing legal action in Europe. Let the commission set a precedent and the rest of the world will follow suit.
@Mr. Myslweski: get out of Steve's butthole on this.
Windows 7 is looking pretty good.
It runs just as fast as XP in a VM on my MacBook Pro and in the interface is a lot cleaner than XP and Vista. The typefaces have got a lot better and it's surprising what a difference that makes.
I think a lot of people will move to 7 and be very happy with it and not notice that XP is running as an emulation. Corporates are a completely different matter but then they took ages to go from Windows 2000 to XP and none of the ones I know have touched Vista. XP + Office 2003 and a better browser than IE 6 seems to be the base line for a corporate machine.
Spotlight vs. Google
You'd have to do a fuck of a lot more than put Spotlight on some servers. Apple might get somewhere using the brand to sell to customers to selected partners, data protection issues notwithstanding. Apple does have some outstanding engineers but little experience of the software development that Google is involved in.
The article is also flawed suggesting that Chrome competes with Safari. Apple doesn't release Safari to earn brownie points but to provide a front-end to iTunes store. Of course, Google is aiming to do something similar with Chrome by providing the best runtime for Google Apps shit.
Apple has done well by following the "Simplify, simplify" dictum and having a worringly complicit media well-managed by the PR department. By focussing so obsessively on the delivered product Apple does indeed provide users with wow, wet trouser moments. But it also hides its failures well - the first iPhone was very nearly one of them.
I like MacOS and and I like Apple notebooks (recently got my second) but it was Intel's work that saved their bacon a few years ago. Like I suspect oh so many others, Macs only became really interesting once they approached PC pricing and offered the prospect of virtual or dual-boot windows. Windows 7 works very nicely in Parallels and I can see it getting the kind of adoption that MS has missed with Vista and will give many users a similar good feeling though probably less worringly intense about owning that fanbois seem to get. And getting 7 onto netbooks will probably worry Apple as much as seeing mobile phones grow MP3 players. It responded brilliantly and no doubt whatever is in production is going to be interesting but Apple does also get it wrong at times.
re. Open source
Whille I'm not sure of the complexity argument I see no good reason to open source their most valuable asset. Maing browsers is what they do for a living. And judging by the binary size and functionality code bloat isn't a problem.
As for Unite I think he [Jon von Tetzchner] has a point: the real implications will take take time to manifest if ever. I think it is impressive that the individual user has complete control over their own data.
Scarily close to the truth
The http://twitter.com/twatotron is also currently set to turd() every thirty minutes during vaguely plausible waking hours. Has Mr. Williams been looking over my shoulder?
Credit, of course, to Matt and the crew over at the original site http://ifyoulikeitsomuchwhydontyoulivethere.com
Web 3.0 - no human interaction required.
Plastic pseudo-oestrogens mean we're all doomed
Same sex couples are so late twentieth century. I have no problem about who lives & loves whom but the gene pool does and fertility in the West has declined dramatically within the last generation. While artificial insemination may be a blessing to those treated it doesn't solve the larger problem.
As for all the wankers (oh, I'm so fucking funny, me - did you see what I did there?) ready to offer the fruits of their loins - you're all sterile, too.
The future belongs to the poor and the poorly educated. Does that make me reactionary?
BTW. Can I change my nick to the Twat-O-Tron?
Criticising bias with bias
Lewis, we know that you favour nuclear fission power but please stop your view clouding your analysis so much.
Our demand for power of all sorts is the source of the problem. As people like Amory Lovins have been arguing for decades generation is not the best solution, using less power is. If we can improve our energy efficiency we will need less generating capacity.
The ROCs you fume about - calling them a "tax" puts you in with Daily Mail crowd - are incentives to encourage investment and are due to be phased out over time. At least they are in Germany. Even if your supposition that wind farmers will be paying companies to take their power so they can pocket the subsidy does come to pass that would be no less absurd than many of the other schemes in agriculture and elsewhere.
The economic arguments are very important but they are manifold. I've read a report from E.ON from last year which already indicated that wind energy was being bought on the LEX (Leipziger Energy Exchange) last summer because it was cheaper than energy from gas based generators. So wind energy was being bought instead of gas energy and limiting the *spot* price.
As for interconnects - the European Commission is pressing ahead to encourage pan-EU distribution networks which should increase both efficiency and reliability by enforcing the separation of network and generation ownership. This is essential if projects like Munich Re's proposed Desertec are going to have any chance of success - a certain degree of skepticism regarding the project is advisable but it is interesting that an insurance company is getting behind the project.
Your critical coverage of the renewable is welcome when it debunks some of the myths but it is easy to go from debunking ill-informed hacks to simply slagging off the whole issue.
Depressing fucktards pwn the comments
Dear Moderatix - couldn't you pump them full of electroshocks as they spew their soft cock bile?
It's about choice. If a browser was just a browser then there wouldn't be anything to discuss. But Microsoft has tried to use the browser to maintain a proprietary hold on information exchange. IE 8 complies with only some of the standards of the body of which Microsoft is a memeber. CSS 3 anyone? How about SVG? HTML 5? Oh, the internet is okay as long as it's the Microsoft internet.
To the poor fuckwits pouring scorn on Opera on this page - you are probably only too ready to complain when petrol/booze/blow becomes more expensive and you have no *choice* but to buy from your single supplier.
To the deluded idiots haranguing the "EU" - what total cocks you are. The EU is a political federation. You might do better aiming your spleen at the European Commission or better still at the relevant directorate. This is the very same Commission that has just fined Intel, E.ON and others for price fixing, has forced telephone networks to reduce at least somewhat their extortionate prices and perhaps most importantly pushed through the open skies policy on air travel. And all of this in opposition to national governments batting for their favoured "national champions".
To the sad yanks out there who think this has anything to do with politics - demographics, demographics, demographics. The EU is a larger market than the US but if you think we're bad just wait till the Chinese get their act together.
"To those who need wireless broadband today, that may be more important than LTE's promise..."
But there, as they say, is the rub. Mobile broadband nowadays means ubiquity and interoperability so LTE still wins out by letting operators get the most out of their existing equipment with HSPA offering comparable speeds to WiMAX. *Especially* as the margins fall.
If on the other hand you're talking about wireless but not mobile broadband then directional connections are the way to go.
that covers a lot of technical ground very well - despite the odd error. The area I would single out is the tradeoff between frequency and bandwidth: yes, lower frequencies propagate further but you have a lot less bandwidth to play with at 900 MHz than you do at 2 MHz.
Mobile data failed to take off largely down to the cost and the difficult of using it - we were all supposed to do everything on the phone. The cost might have been less of an apparent problem if we all still had only 56k modems at home but broadband signficantly changed both experience and expectations and then all of a sudden there was the idea of "free" wifi, subject to availability, ie. in a densely populated area oh, and video on the interweb became popular.
That said, 3G mobile is really wonderful in general as long as we accept that speeds will vary. For surfing (without video) and chat and e-mail I've found little reason to complain. And while I think we'll always hope for more the novelty has worn off a bit and some of at least have learned to wait.
Hotline != Techies
Corporate network admins like IE because they can easily implement corporate wide policies on it. Everyone knows IE 6 is a crap browser but *they* think they know (they might actually know for all I know) how to lock it down and an awful lot of money was spent on developing systems to work specifically with it. Like it or not that can add up to a lot of money if it all needs updating. As fro Firefox versus IE - that's a not non-starter when it comes to resources as Firefox is just as much as a resource hog as IE. Opera on the other hand really does perform better on older, slower machines.