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* Posts by Charlie Clark

2609 posts • joined 16 Apr 2007

Ten apps to install on your Nexus 7 first

Charlie Clark
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Re: Tunein Radio file size....

Size might be the database.

TuneIn is pretty good though I only use the free version to listen to the stations I know I want to - who gives a fuck about "related" or pictures. The one thing that the premium version has that is worth noting is the ability to record stuff.

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Android spanks Apple iOS in sales as fanbois hold out for iPhone 5

Charlie Clark
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Re: Is it really though?

Does it really matter? It's very good link-bait and that's increasingly all that matters.

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Hold onto your hats, world: Groupon actually made a PROFIT

Charlie Clark
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Re: Two problems with Groupon for me

I think you've inadvertently hit the nail on the head: the groups that Groupon are targeting are organised around the offers rather than common interests. I know a few people who are "into" the whole thing but it doesn't seem to be creating the desired networks. Anecdotally I have heard from some people that it seems a good way to kick start a business even of the less esoteric kind, but I can't help thinking that tapping into pre-existing groups with a more standard rebate scheme would be better. You can just see how Google's Circle's are predestined for this and at much lower commissions.

Of course, Groupon's business model is almost diametrically opposed to the business it is pretending to serve: they cannot be interested in continually buying new customers (at the expense of existing ones).

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Study shows half of all websites use jQuery

Charlie Clark
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Re: And a bloody good thing too!

@toadwarrior

I agree that these libraries generally do things that should be available directly anyway. But they are not available directly. In addition, the libraries allow people to try out different things that may become standardised in JS or HTML or CSS later, once best practice has been established.

Much I disdain the copycat practice of many developers it is very Canutish to expect it to change. We have to live in the world in the way it is and not the way it ideally should be. User experience matters and the web which is now commercially driven has got a lot nicer to use over the last 5 years or so thanks to libraries like these because it affects companies' bottom lines.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Maybe I'm an outlier....

You should check the licence to be sure but basically, yes, it is perfectly okay to rehost the library.

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Charlie Clark
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Colour me sceptical

but I don't quite believe those statistics. HTTPArchive doesn't quite go into such detail but has some interesting comparative statistics. I'll have to check the source code but I think that for statistical purposes JQuery counts as a "Google library" because it is often served from the Google CDN. This itself begs the question as to how do you identify which libraries are being used if you can't rely on the source domain. You'd almost certainly have to execute the code to test which W3Techs don't do.

JQuery certainly is popular and also supported by lots of CMSes but it is also monolithic being used for all kinds of different things. Used wisely with other libraries like Modernizr it makes cross-browser development a lot easier. I have long been sceptical of using JS in websites but it makes interactive websites so much easier both for users and developers as evinced in any kind of reporting.

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Vodafone and pals can't kick the habit of cheap mobe prices

Charlie Clark
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Flawed premise

The author never explains why telcos hate subsidies so much. Inasmuch as they bind the customers to longer contracts and guarantee higher cashflow and ARPU they seem to offer quite a lot. Complicating the price is like setting the odds at the casino: the house always wins as consumers are lousy at calculating value. Comments on this thread seem to agree. Good accounting and sale-or-return deals should be able to offset the cost of inventory, some of which will not be sold. So, what are the reasons for telcos wanting to unbundle contracts from phones must be elsewhere. Note, I'm not discounting the desire: the trend towards unbundling here in Germany started years ago and is becoming the norm.

The blanket classification of Europeans as a group of people who like to live on the never-never and then provide Spain as an example is completely flawed. Household debt in the EU is considerably less per person than in the US but is far from uniform. Countries with dysfunctional property markets such as Spain, Ireland and the UK have per person debt considerably higher than the EU average. Interestingly enough even as the number of delinquents (in the economic sense) rises, credit shifts from nominally low risk, low yield secured (houses) to high risk, high yield unsecured (phones). Just because someone can't pay their mortgage doesn't mean they won't buy mobile phones, power smartcards or fags.

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Google updates Chrome Flash plugin for security, stability

Charlie Clark
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Re: Opera and Firefox

Even with the new out of process plugins for Opera? I find it a bit slower to start but Flash can no longer crash the browser.

One of the differences, of course, is that Chrome builds its own plugins.

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Hiccups in Apple's iCloud after yesterday's hack of hapless hack

Charlie Clark
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Mushroom

Obligatory response

Typical user error - he's obviously holding it wrong.

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Apple patents shopping lists

Charlie Clark
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Re: I'm getting fed up with the volume of ignorant comments on patents

It's a patent on location based services. Going to be fucking pretty much unenforceable. Given the detail I guess it's going to be hard to call it a mere software patent as it sounds very much like an end-to-end logistics solution. That would be fine but it would also be a bit like patenting bus routes. Oh shit, probably given them another idea.

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Charlie Clark
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@wyatt

You can't patent ideas.

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W3C names four new editors of HTML5 spec

Charlie Clark
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That would only be true for a monolithic standard which HTML isn't. The WHATWG approach will allow parts of the spec to be signed off when they "are ready", an unfortunately nebulous term, but validated by events of the last few years: the shift from plug-in based video to the native tag is probably the best example of this in action.

Backwards compatibility will mean that this does not break the web and developers now have access to robust techniques and libraries for bridging the gap, although more often than not WHATWG standardises an existing approach rather invents something wholly new: the form extensions with robust client-side validation mimic but also standardise a slew of javascript libraries for the function.

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Oracle hurls MySQL at Microsoft database wobblers

Charlie Clark
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Re: I think..

Whichever way you look at it, it's a marriage made in hell but we wish the happy couple all the best...

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Apple's new Safari snubs older Macs, drops Windows version

Charlie Clark
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Re: There's a (Google) patent for that

They don't need to threaten but it might be admissible in the kind of court that accepts these ridiculous patents. Can you see where this going? Car manufacturers are going to be suing each other for including speedometers in dashboards or petrol gauges; people will start suing each other for driving the same route to work...

Oh, this is about a new version of Safari. I'm always surprised by how many Mac users actually use Safari. I think they are impressed by the lack of controls.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Am

No, I quite like it and, as Opera hasn't lost it, I don't miss it.

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Galaxy S III dumps universal search, tries to dodge Apple's sueballs

Charlie Clark
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When is a patent not a patent

entitled to the industry's best ideas for free

News just in: ideas are not patentable. You can only patent a design or a model that may implement the idea but the idea itself is not patentable.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Fuck you apple!

No, like most software patents it's not worth the paper it's written on.

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Apple CEO: Frothing fanboi iPhone 5 hype screwed our sales

Charlie Clark
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Re: its just common sense....

Weird logic. No one knows much about the I-Phone 5 so it counts as an unknown unknown. I think you can only safely assume that last year's model may be discounted somewhat. As for release date: the channel will probably know when inventory starts drying up.

Personally, I think splodging £ 35 a month on a phone means that you've got money to burn. This is not supposed to be a common trait amongst students what with the increased tuition fees. But, if she does has the cash, then let her do with it what she pleases.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Western Europe was the main culprit...

Germany seems to be doing okay except it seems to be starting to prefer Android, particularly the Samsung flavour, over IOS. I'm sure that can't have anything to do with the court cases and attendant bad publicity here. Obviously Merkins should stop buying fancy German cars in retaliation!

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Apple Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion review

Charlie Clark
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No, and no news as to whether the long-standing Bluetooth bug has been fixed or changes in the POSIX libraries, which drivers have been broken, etc. I'm going to give this at least a three-month miss. Lion did at least bring standardisation on x86_64, this one sounds just like lipstick and nail polish.

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Apple seeks whopping $2.525bn Samsung patent payout

Charlie Clark
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Re: I am reminded of Austin Powers...

I thought it was Jonatton Yeah?

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Apple wins EU-wide Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 ban

Charlie Clark
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This will get fruity

According to Heise, http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/Apple-vs-Samsung-Verkaufsverbot-fuer-Galaxy-Tab-7-7-nicht-fuer-10-1N-1650216.html, the court has indeed agreed to a ban of the 7.7 in the EU. That's going to be tricky to enforce, especially in the light of the UK judgement. Add to that the considerable different implementation details of the 7.7, not least that it's OLED. Court's not far from here I reckon the decision was taken so they can enjoy the few days of summer we're having.

I think this is going to be kicked upstairs pretty quickly and then all bets are of. A judgement like this has direct consequences on trade within the single market. It's not a knock-off handbag or wrist-watch. This could be a Pyrrhic victory for Apple.

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Skype: Nearly half of adults don't install software updates

Charlie Clark
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Re: The man from Adobe is a funny man

Wiebke is a woman's name.

Adobe's stuff has got a lot better behaved in the last few years but it's still far from perfect. Runtimes like Acrobat Reader and Flash are particularly susceptible to security breaches so regular updates are, unfortunately, a must.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Still on Skype 2.8

Same here. Also worried about backdoors installed for the NSA, etc. since was sold to E-Bay. Have only heard of problems with later versions. God knows what Microsoft has got planned: a drive-by install of Metro on all devices? Will keep using Skype until they change the protocol and switch off the super nodes.

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Samsung flogs 10 million Galaxy S IIIs in 7 weeks

Charlie Clark
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Re: S3 not for me

Did you buy it unseen and on spec only? And what size hands do you have? I've got small hands myself but I've seen the SIII and it's not too big to be held in one hand.

I have heard reports of the firmware being buggy. Unfortunately, this is not unusual for Samsung but they do normally get round to fixing it. But, you know what, if you don't like it, take it back or sell it to one of the many clamouring for one.

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Charlie Clark
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Only just started

It may be because I don't watch much commercial television but it seems to me that Samsung is only now really turning up the promotional knob as they have the exclusive deal with the Olympics and presumably wanted to ramp up quantity in advance. It was only in the last week that I noticed promos for the S III on Eurosport. I suspect we are all likely to be thoroughly sick of it in a month. Still, with the SIII, SII and the Galaxy Ace they have their segmentation right, just like Apple: premium, aspirational and make do.

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Google suspends 16GB Nexus 7 orders

Charlie Clark
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Re: Why not let people still order and wait for it?

It could be a simple matter of the price was for a limited quantity of devices. Ordering is a contract for both price and date of delivery. If either of those are uncertain it's best not to accept the order.

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HTML 5 gets forked up

Charlie Clark
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Re: Amicable my ass...

Not forgetting that it's not even CSS 2.1 but CSS 2 level 1 or some such. I haven't yet quite figured that the difference is supposed to be or more importantly how I declare it but Jigsaw will give me errors.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: If I'm reading this correctly.

Basically, yes. W3C stuff is what the suits like to hear. Unfortunately, for most of the last decade Microsoft abused the standardisation procedure to block progress on HTML and cement its position. This is why WHATWG was set up by developers in the first place.

HTML isn't code, it's markup; and while that might sound pedantic it is important. The rules have always told browsers that they cannot ignore anything they don't understand which means developers can get on trying things out without worrying too much. The main advantage of HTML 5 is that it specifies how to handle errors, something that was sorely missing from HTML < 5. The main deficit, in my view at least, is an equivalent for the browser-prefixes in CSS. But as even they are being largely ignored but the crowd of ignoramuses that, myself included, web developers, that point is probably moot. What I would like to see is users being given the control in browsers to decide whether they want to support experimental features rather than the current lottery. Oh, and I like <time> to survive the whole process.

The W3C will survive if only to rubberstamp what WHATWG comes up with. This is much same as other international bodies such as the IEEE which generally approves stuff that the industry is already pushing on consumers.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Worst of both worls

It's actually just business as usual. People not familiar with what's going on are generally spooked by the fact that the process specification isn't due to finish for several years. This scares customers from adopting the perfectly reasonable approach of adopting what has been finalised: the DTD and the new tags.

WHATWG can go back to being the developers group of trying to work out what works and trying to work out how to get the bits that don't work to work. The current hottest potato is how to deal the apparent need to serve up different versions of the same image.

The W3C can go back to being the bloated body that adds a veneer of respectability to the whole thing. If it means that we get an "HTML 5 transitional" then I guess we'll have to live with it.

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Nokia woos networks with 'exclusive Windows 8 mobe deals'

Charlie Clark
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Re: Bad for Nokia

Depends on the details. The Apple deal was unusual because carriers were initially so desperate that they agreed to the 30 % of ARPU to Apple. Usually, it comes with a nice big marketing assistance budget and juicy commissions if certain targets are met. Microsoft and Intel are past masters at that so who's to say we won't see a Nokia WP8 on Intel phone based on the reference design that Intel recently did for Android. The marketing subsidies are tax-deductible for MS and Intel so it's a win, win, fail for MS, Intel and customer.

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Intel, AMD financials: Bad news for Obama campaign

Charlie Clark
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Re: Economics and Politics on El Reg

Seeing as the cover story of last week's Economist was about the good prospects for the American economy, this article is, indeed, flawed. Apple and IBM continue to make money hand over fist and manufacturing is recovering thanks partly to lower energy costs. But gone are the days when the fate of one company was linked to the fate of the country: "What's good for GM is good for America".

The Clinton quote is trotted out routinely and while it's not untrue, it's overly simplistic. It's exactly that simplicity which made it appealing and important. Incumbent presidents have been re-elected with the economy in a bigger mess than it is at the moment. They don't tend to do very well when they talk down to the electorate.

With the US electoral system as it stands, elections are decided by relatively small groups of voters who can be bothered to vote in the swing states. The last time I checked neither AMD nor Intel were very big in the rust belt or Florida.

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Why British TV drama is crap – and why this matters to tech firms

Charlie Clark
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Re: Piffle

Actually, it's the formalist's description of a drama which is the strive to restore the equilibrium lost at the start. The mystery ties in nicely to the human penchant for hypothesis (an essential part of processing language, trying to work out what's coming next). But, basically, we all want to see "John Wayne coming to save America at the last minute". To this American productions add the magic dust that America, even if, or perhaps because, it's just small-town Kansas, is the world.

Of course, it's the subversions of such productions, exemplified by Sergio Leone's "Once Upon A Time In The West" which are so much more interesting. But people aren't interested in, er, interesting. They want fast-food in a fancy box.

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Charlie Clark
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Irony

The best US drama is commissioned and produced by the cable networks such as HBO. The irony is that their long term contracts with their viewers work in a similar way to the much-maligned licence fee allowing shows to develop over time rather than being pulled as soon as ratings do not meet expectations. This is one of the reasons why good screenwriters now seem to prefer TV over Hollywood, with its continued obsessions of novelty for novelty's sake, sequels, SFX and merchandising.

The production values of such shows are aligned both with those of Hollywood but also with the attention to detail that has been the hallmark at least of British historical drama and documentaries, which is where the BBC has traditionally been so successful internationally and for which it can more easily secure the necessary co-funding in advance. More contemporary shows are occasionally elsewhere but much more likely to be bought as formats (Life on Mars, Shameless) and done for the mass market, which disdains too much non-local locality.

This does suggest that the BBC needs to move away from the me-too crap that it produces to be financially successful. But the charter forces it to try and cater for all. Personally, I agree with you that the Greg Dyke race to the bottom serves no one - the great unwashed reads The Sun and enjoys scandal and sport - and that public broadcasters should concentrate quality* and innovation over repetition quantity.

*It has to come up with its own definition of such and stick to it.

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Has Nokia bottomed out? El Reg drills into the detail

Charlie Clark
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Re: Actually Andrew I agree. That is a reasonable and realistic...........

Where is the room for "distinctiveness" on Windows 8 phones? Nokia needs to be doing more to convince the market that it plans on being more than just Microsoft's hardware division.

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Darth Vader is a pansy

Charlie Clark
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Colours

Black & red, the colours of sports cars sold to men looking to appear more potent. I think there is plenty of trick cyclist research on this but Ferrari's catalogue is probably all the evidence you need.

Personally, I like the idea expounded in "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover" that black stuff should be more expensive because is symbolises "the mastery over death".

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Microsoft: Azure now holds FOUR TREELLION objects

Charlie Clark
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Smells decidedly fishy

What counts as an object and what services are using which, er, services?

I.e. is Azure underpinning Skydrive and Office 365?

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New! Yahoo! CEO! Mayer! awarded! mucho! mazuma!

Charlie Clark
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Sharpen your pencils

Thinking of applying for the perks are you?

I can see the headlines now: "Male Reg commentard impregnates self in attempt to secure comfy affirmative action CEO package."

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Google ordered to censor 'torrent', 'megaupload' and more words

Charlie Clark
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Re: Word of Mouth

You are suffering from observational bias. You are only likely to hear of such cases which involve American companies. In certain industries American companies predominate, largely due to the size of the domestic market, the importance of the English language and the US venture capital market.

Other examples demonstrating a more even-handed approach: fines on price-fixing in the DRAM market; denying additional subsidies to German state banks; forcing BAA to sell Gatwick; unbundling electricity transmission networks from production capacity...

France is a special case with a strong history of free speech, a very independent judiciary (recently sentenced an ex-president); and a strong ip rights lobby (musicians, artists, writers but also the fashion industry). Previous cases have also involved sales of knock-off handbags but also Nazi memorabilia. You could also include the recent law criminalising denial of acts of genocide (the holocaust but also the massacre of Armenians in Turkey).

Nevertheless, I can see the judgement could be overturned at European level as unfair interference. The politicians tend to drag the feet in such cases but the courts would be obliged to respect a judgement.

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Judge: Apple must run ads saying Samsung DIDN'T copy the iPad

Charlie Clark
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Re: How big is your fine judge?

Apple is going to want to keep this story out of the media at all costs. If they haven't already launched an appeal then they probably won't. The notice on the website doesn't have to be very big or noticeable and infinitely more acceptable than being done for contempt.

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Charlie Clark
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Re: Timing is perfect!

Why do you think an appeal will be successful? Looks like the judge is merely backing up his judgement that Apple's actions were damaging and maybe even defamatory. Nice precedent.

Maybe Apple's motto will become: live by the court, die by the court.

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Java won the smartphone wars (and nobody noticed)

Charlie Clark
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Conclusion missing?

How does the post demonstrate Java winning in the end? Or is just an oblique reference to victory of the Java-like Dalvik on Android? Java doesn't run legally on IOS as far as I know.

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Chinese gov splurges £102 MILLION to replace pirated software

Charlie Clark
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They paid how much?

Given the figures that get bandied around about UK government licence fees the amount looks vaguely insulting and probably doesn't even cover the installs of a medium Chinese municipality. But it's probably the best Microsoft can expect for the next few years and cheaper than paying lawyers who've got no chance.

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PayPal is bleeding market share and it's all eBay's fault

Charlie Clark
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What's all the fuss about?

Bank giro transfers are easy, secure and cheap in the SEPA (Single European Payment Area).

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WinPho to eke out 4% of US smartphone biz

Charlie Clark
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Everthing's fine in the powerpoint

A company here is still toting Gartner's prediction from last year of 10 % market share for Windows Phone 7 in 2012. If it works for them, I'm sure it will work for Microsoft.

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Nearly 2 MILLION US Facebook users quit social network

Charlie Clark
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Coat

Re: Vatican City 0

Maybe need to switch to the rhythm method?

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iPhone 5 poised to trounce Android, devastate BlackBerry?

Charlie Clark
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Re: Korea

My own unrepresentative sample of a typical teen fashion victim today who was desperate for I-Phone a year ago and today plenty happy with her Samsung S3 with which she could show me the midday temperature in southern Italy: 46°C. A scorcher. Mammoth definitely a plus there.

The analysts can make more money from phones that can be treated as luxury goods than they can from commodity items. The nimbus of the App Store is fading and the Long Tail has been proven to be a false hope. ow that it's. No longer possible to be cool with the same toy that everyone else has, we're moving back to whichever phone case can be easily customised as a differentiator n. Seen a couple of retro C-90 cassette backplates for I-Phones recently. Should be a big chance for Nokia but they seem to have lost the plot in going for hand unfriendly forms.

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Olympic Security cock-up was down to that DARN software

Charlie Clark
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Re: Dedication

Oh shit, just noticed that there is a real company and not just a Day Today parody... Life following art?

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Charlie Clark
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Dedication

I was phoned up on holiday...

What in a couple of weeks before the event? That's kind of dedication that gives people faith in a company SecuriCare... Guess that's no Christmas bonus for Mr Buckles then? Not unless he manages to screw over his under minimum wage employees even more.

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Microsoft 'didn't notice' it had removed Browser Choice for 17 months

Charlie Clark
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FAIL

Re: So nobody noticed.....

Oi, wanker.

It was already known as the European Commission in 1993. The Commission's budget is tiny in comparison to GDP, national budgets or the multitude of subventions that member states push through to support their pet industries. But maybe you'd prefer price-fixing and higher mobile phone charges?

That's not to say that the Commission hasn't wasted money on pet projects but it does have a far better track record than most national governments.

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