* Posts by Tim Almond

159 posts • joined 27 Oct 2008

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REVEALED: Titsup flight plan mainframe borks UK air traffic control

Tim Almond

Re: MP

Of course, if people had then died, he'd have been complaining that NATS had been irresponsible.

In the grand scheme of government screwing up, this hardly even registers with me. I've had delays of a couple of hours waiting for a train and no-one at the station seemed particularly bothered.

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A nation of CODERS? Yes, says UK.gov, and have some cash to do it

Tim Almond

Re: Just maybe....

A huge amount of offshoring is because companies struggle to get people.

I'm not sure what this maths initiative is designed to achieve. More teachers doesn't mean more coders.

What we really need is a respected coder's certificate.Something that you can go to an employer and say "look, I can build code". A year's course in a local technical college - learn the fundamentals of computer science, how to code in a modern OO language like Python or Java, how a relational DB works, and then build a CRUD website that is both marked, and can be viewed by prospective employers. Something kids leaving school at either 16 or 18 can do.

And no, that doesn't cover all computing needs. I'd still need to take a Java guy and get him to convert to C#, to learn jQuery and AJAX. But at least I'd know he understood things like data structures and OO coding, which are a springboard to almost all other software development.

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We're not, er, 'cut-throat' capitalists – VC formerly known as ISIS

Tim Almond

Re: I still think of Archer.

The producers of Archer have had to ditch all the ISIS merchandise.

http://www.avclub.com/article/archer-drops-isis-name-suddenly-finds-itself-bunch-210378

No-one wanted to buy it, or they'd have been in the... DANGER ZONE!

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Microsoft exams? Tough, you say? Pffft. 5-YEAR-OLD KID passes MCP test

Tim Almond

Certs

There's nothing really wrong with them, but I'm rather dubious about certs without experience. I've met people with a few years of SQL and the certs and they're very good. And the certs may mean they cover stuff they don't normally and broaden their experience.

But a load of MCSEs just book learn.

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VINYL is BACK and you can thank Sonos for that

Tim Almond

Quality Sound?

"“In an increasingly-digitised world, it appears that music fans still crave a tangible product that gives them original artwork, high audio quality and purity of sound,” she says. At least two of those points are probably true."

Organisation that supports companies selling music bigs up format with a short shelf life shocker.

There's a museum up in the Cotswolds full of old mechanical music, like music boxes and pianolas and they can play really old cylinders and they still play pretty nicely from decades ago. The gramophone records from even a few weeks of play sound terrible.

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4G is quicker than 3G, says Ofcom. Can't we get you on Mastermind, Sybil?

Tim Almond

4G vs Wifi

It's seemed to me that anywhere you can get 4G, you can also get wifi for the price of an espresso. Not as fast as these speeds, but how often do you need 22mbps? How often you going to be in the middle of a city without an office and suddenly want to download Photoshop?

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Sky: We're no longer calling ourselves British. Yep. And Broadcasting can do one, too

Tim Almond

Re: History

So? 95% of what's on the BBC is crap. Homes under the Hammer, National Lottery: In it to Win It, Question Time, Children in Need. At least Sky customers aren't forced to pay for it if they want to watch the BBC.

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PROFESSORS! PROFESSORS! PROFESSORS!

Tim Almond

New Chairs

why, has he been throwing some around?

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What kind of generation doesn't stick it to the Man, but to Taylor Swift instead?

Tim Almond

If I can find pirated material, so can Google...

Well, no. They can't. You can find pirated material because your brain is tuned into how to identify pirated material in subtle ways that an algorithm can't.

Plus, how do you know something's pirated? I might write a song and just put it up on a file sharing site. How's Google to know that's not legitimate?

Ultimately, thwarting music piracy is nearly impossible. Even if you remove all piracy online, kids will just come to school and send each other songs via Bluetooth.

What these people can never seem to grasp is that sales are about money and people's moral beliefs. Do you have the money to buy an MP3? Do you think artists should be rewarded for their work? You are not going to convert people who don't tick those boxes into buying. They will not resign themselves to having to pay for it. They will find a way to get hold of it. If I saw a pirate result for an album before Amazon, I'd still buy it from Amazon.

The only thing you can do is to screw up the people who will pay. If an album's not available, some people will find it somewhere and rip it.

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BBC clamps down on ILLICIT iPlayer watchers

Tim Almond

Re: "...BBC charge £12/month, Netflix £6. Does BBC have twice the content...?"

"The BBC makes an enormous amount of content. All those documentaries, classical music - the Proms, Radio 6 Music, live sessions from current bands, Radio 4 - dramas, comedy, current affairs, intellectual debate and discussion, dramas on BBC1/2, popular shows such as Strictly, Bake Off (cue snide comments from intolerant snobs who object to the production of tv shows not to their tastes), the World Service. Etc etc"

But an enormous amount of that content is filler. Radio 4 comedy? You're joking. Absolutely terrible. Intellectual debate and discussion? Reality: debate shows with rabble-rousers like David Starkey. Live sessions from bands? That's free publicity for their music sales, something they can pay for themselves and stick on YouTube. Bake Off? Free TV given to the BBC on deals to sell the associated cookbooks. Strictly? Cheap TV that'll be forgotten in a matter of weeks. Drama? Well, The Fall's pretty good, and the first couple of series of Sherlock, but I'm struggling to think of much else.

I have no idea where £3bn of people's money goes. I'm not seeing it on the screen.

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Hey, YouTube lovers! How about you pay us, we start paying for STUFF? - Google

Tim Almond

"Once real money is changing hands, shouldn’t the video talent start to get feisty, and start demanding more? "

But they can't. The minute they start trying to charge, people will just find another video to watch. This isn't the 80s. There's no longer a tiny number of records out there by artists that get on the Radio 1 playlist. Anyone can make a video and stick it on YouTube.

Gangnam Style would never have been a global phenomenon without YouTube. If Psy had charged people, he'd have made some sales in South Korea, but be worse off than giving it away and collecting on the small percentage of the billions of views that bought the MP3. And the artists largely don't care if they give away a billion YouTube views. It's the million sales that come from it that matter.

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Game of Thrones man stars in sci-fi bit on comet-catcher Rosetta

Tim Almond

Re: What a waste of money

But why? Why do we have film credits? You don't have a credit on a Twix for the people who picked the cocoa.

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Entity Framework goes 'code first' as Microsoft pulls visual design tool

Tim Almond

Re: don't understand the logic

several times slower? Produce those MS figures.

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Tim Almond

EF Diff

Yes, they do, but that wasn't the problem. It was that everything was in one file. A couple of people changed or added some tables and that meant manual merging that was ugly and prone to errors. You try looking at a two huge EDMX file and working out what changed from the last version.

The last project I worked on was old EF and the simplest thing was to only have one person at a time updating and checking in the EDMX to avoid problems.

With Code First, developers can be making changes in and even if you get a conflict it's easier to resolve. The history is easier to see as you can see a list of all entities in a changeset and look at each individually. Plus the migrations stuff means that you have real DB source control. It enforces developers working out all the base data that has to be there, which means you're less likely to get a cockup because someone forgot they needed to setup all the country codes when you go live.

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Finnish PM: Apple has DESTROYED FINLAND

Tim Almond

Change

"However, a leading Finnish analyst has rubbished the PM's claims, telling us that Nokia "committed suicide".

The thing about a lot of electronics and computer companies is that they were incompetent about user interface and user experience. My Creative music player was a good bit of kit, but the synchronisation software was abysmal. As was the sync software for my Nokia phone. The first Android phone I bought just worked.

The thing with business is that when you get a big change in tech, the existing players often can't move to it. They've spent years perfecting an organisation based around how the world was, with people that fit that world. They make money that way, and can't see that a game changer means that that won't last. They're very reluctant to change what works, even though what works today may not work tomorrow.

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Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook

Tim Almond

The Future

I think the key point isn't about whether Apple is still making exciting products, but how much longer it can keep treading water.

What was new in the £539 iPhone 6? Barometer, bit thinner, slo-mo recording. Meanwhile, a sub-£150 Android phone covers what most people want a smartphone to do, or isn't very far away from it. OK, an iPhone has eleventy million cores or twenty gazillion megapixel screens, but when you're using it for Angry Birds and posting drunken low-light photos on Facebook, who cares?

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Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...

Tim Almond

Happiness

The problem is that whatever the academics say, the politicians aren't interested in the academia, just using it as a cloak to reduce choice.

What's dangerous is what we define by happiness. Julie Andrews might have liked whiskers on kittens, but for some people they kick off allergies. Bright copper kettles? Thanks, but I'd rather cook with non-stick stainless steel as it's a bugger to clean copper kettles afterwards. And my Christmas list probably would include the Blu-Ray of Edge of Tomorrow rather than a pair of mittens.

It's like when people talk about work-life balance. Some people actually like working a lot. Money makes them feel more secure. Work gives them purpose.

What we really need is for government to generally get out of the way, to leave us with more of the fruits of our labours to allow us to make the choices that we want to make.

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Doctor Who and the Dalek: 10-year-old tests BBC programming game

Tim Almond

VB

Who cares? I recently wrote a windows service for a company in VB.NET. Not my first choice, but it compiles down to the same MSIL as C#. it is almost a copy of C# with different syntax. There's nothing "spaghetty" about VB.NET - it's an OO language in the same way that Python is.

All that really matters is concepts - loops, decision and later, OO concepts. Once you've got those, you can pick up almost any language quite quickly. There's the odd differences in syntax rules, languages with strong typing and not (damn you, Javascript) but most of it's very similar.

If VB.NET works for getting kids into coding, great.

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Martha Lane Fox: YEUCH! The Internet is MADE by MEN?!?

Tim Almond

Online Voting

Online voting is one of the worst uses of computer technology imaginable.

Where are computers useful? 1) when you need to move data really quickly 2) when you need to store and retrieve data in large volumes, and quickly 3) when you need to do calculations.

None of these apply to voting. You get all the cost of computer systems (bedding-in problems, implementation, configuration) and none of the benefits. Bits of paper work. It might mean the count takes 6 hours instead of 1, but other than a few politics nerds, who cares? It's not like it has any bearing on the price of fish.

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Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed

Tim Almond

Re: I used to be a U2 fan

You could protest by paying him nothing for their latest album

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Tim Almond

MP3 is Good Enough

The problem is that we have a format that everything will play (my car stereo, my phone, my PC, my smart TV, my iPod and my DVD player) that for most people is good enough. The market has tried giving people things like SACD and they haven't gone for it. Play along lyrics? I can google them if I really want them. Album artwork? I can see that already.

The reality is as follows:-

1. You are never going to recapture those days where people binned all their old vinyl for CDs again.

2. Those people still have those CDs and are happy enough with the audio quality.

3. The past was a time when kids asked their aunts or brothers for music as presents. Today, games and DVDs are also competing for those dollars.

4. Piracy exists, there's nothing you can do to stop it except to make the legal option reasonably well-priced and easy to use. And that means that trying to force people onto DRM just won't work.

5. You're an over-the-hill rock band that peaked in the late 80s and even people that once loved your music think this new one is pretty unmemorable.

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Scottish independence: Will it really TEAR the HEART from IT firms?

Tim Almond

Re: Plenty of job opportunities

that's what I'm hoping...

It's going to be a goldrush. If England and Scotland co-operate, all those systems will need changing to ensure that only certain people can see certain things. if they don't, rewrites.

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iCloud fiasco: 100 FAMOUS WOMEN exposed NUDE online

Tim Almond

Re: Yes.

I don't know about iPhones, but it sounds like the celebs just went with iCloud, which means as they're mailing stuff around, it's staying up on their "cloud" account.

Seriously, don't these people have *people* to tell them not to do that sort of thing? I wouldn't expect JLaw to know about the difference between iCloud, IMAP and POP3, but surely they have someone that does things like securing their wifi for them?

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Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media

Tim Almond

Dinosaurs

Most of the media is actually grasping that say, someone doing a youtube song of them singing Frozen or fan art of The Avengers doesn't matter at all. You might want to shut down the people broadcasting the whole film, but that stuff doesn't hurt you and in fact probably helps you because it generates some interest.

No-one buys a Sky sub just to see the goals. You can see them on MOTD a few hours later. It's to see the whole match live, to be part of the drama of events unfolding.

And seriously, what's the odds of this actually working. You block them on vine? So, what's to stop someone sticking the video on a video sharing site in China? Oh, you're just going to prosecute a fan. Really, good luck with the backlash to that.

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Govt control? Hah! It's IMPOSSIBLE to have a successful command economy

Tim Almond

Re: yeah but what about the jobs...?

that's the way the Luddites thought. That production would destroy people's livelihoods.

What actually happened is that we just advanced. The price of a pair of socks goes down, the rich man can now afford a pair of socks and a bar of chocolate. Cadbury's makes a bar of chocolate cheaper, you can now afford tickets to a music hall. Someone makes a gramophone...etc etc.

I still don't have a car on my drive with the sort of speed and luxury of a Bugatti Veyron. When I do, I think we'll have reached the right stage of our development.

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I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

Tim Almond

Neighbours

I've never minded if neighbours/friends are reasonable about it. Don't treat me like I'm on call, don't get snotty with me because it's still not working after my free labour. Don't knock on my door asking for me to look at a PC that you bought from PC World after I expressly told you NOT to go to PC World. If I'm there for a short while, offer me coffee or a glass of red.

And to be honest, it's something I can give to the neighbours and they do nice stuff for me too. I get a fair amount of free rhubarb, they don't hesitate to offer assistance if I need a sofa moving. I'd much rather be working on a PC than digging a fruit patch.

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JJ Abrams and Star Wars: I've got a bad feeling about this

Tim Almond

Disagree

The main thing with Abrams is that he's a safe pair of hands, and for me, I think he makes good films. I enjoyed Star Trek and MI3 and I think that Super 8 is probably his best film as it seems to be a more personal project.

What I'm not sure about is whether he can make a great film. I think he'll do a good job of making a watchable, enjoyable film. But I'm not expecting it to be mind-blowingly awesome.

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TalkTalk's catch-up telly fib silenced by ad watchdog

Tim Almond

Re: Hang on.

but that is misleading, especially as some of the stuff that I'd most like to watch on catchup (major US comedies for example) often isn't on there and I'm not sure if there's catchup for channels like Dave at all.

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Object to #YearOfCode? You're a misogynist and a snob, says the BBC

Tim Almond

Re: superficial at best

Complete waste of time, unless you are either a) interested or b) going on holiday

The amount of time it takes to get to a level of fluency where you can use it in business is huge. It's why we have a small number of specialist translators, people who are good with languages, possibly raised in a bilingual home. And translators really aren't very expensive.

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Tim Almond

Show Coding to Kids...

... and then leave it to the computer clubs.

Not everyone has to understand code. It's an important part of business, but then, so is sales and not everyone is good at sales. Getting kids fired up who might not be would be useful.

And no, I have no faith in YearOfCode. I did, but you can't have someone running it who doesn't understand it. History shows that managers can't just be enthusiastic amateurs in the subject.

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Best budget Android smartphone there is? Must be the Moto G

Tim Almond

Anyone on 4G

Is there really much benefit to it at the moment?

The places it seems to be, like London or Reading, I can find pay a Starbucks, pay a quid for an espresso and use their wi-fi.

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If you're not paying, you're product: If you ARE paying, it's no better

Tim Almond

Problems

"Even if the service doesn’t get yanked you run the risk that one day you’ll lose something critical thanks to a systems outage or hard-drive crash."

What's the difference between that happening to you and it happening to a service provider? Except that you've got to do all your own patching, backups, verifying backups and so forth, rather than a company with dozens of staff who by sheer numbers can solve more problems than you can.

The main thing with all software and services is to always have an exit strategy. If you don't like how a software or service provider treats you, are you either happy to give up the service, or do you have a way of migrating your data to another service?

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Don't crack that Mac: Almost NOTHING in new Retina MacBook Pros can be replaced

Tim Almond

Not just about cost

I have thinkpads because they're better for upgrading.

The cost is part of that - I can get a repairer to swap out the HDD for a small cost, but it's also about time and privacy. I don't want to have to get to an Apple store (nearest one 30 miles away) who will send it off. I want it turned around that day so I can get on. That means I can call around the repair shops locally and see if someone can do it then.

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Couchbase relaxes NoSQL derrière into mobile seats

Tim Almond

"A doctor can have entire day or entire weeks of data right on the device," Yaseen says.

But why do you need a DB layer for that? How much data are we talking about? I've worked on systems where people worked remotely and they either used the file system as a DB (as in, each record was in a text file) or all the data was in an XML file and loaded into memory.

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iPhone 5S: Apple, you're BORING us to DEATH (And you too, Samsung)

Tim Almond

Peak Phone

Simple fact is that the smartphone has hit the point where nothing is revolutionary now. Nothing really warrants a global presentation and wall-to-wall coverage. You can't go blaming Apple for that any more than you can blame bicycle makers for adopting the same fundamental bike designs that have been around for over 30 years now.

Science leads to technology. The early versions of technology are often a bit useless, or horribly expensive. They get improved, become more and more popular and continue to evolve, but at a certain point, they get "done" or the improvement delivers very few benefits (e.g. cameras with more than 10mp, cars adding 0.5mpg per new version).

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New iPhones: C certainly DOESN'T stand for 'Cheap'

Tim Almond

Re: Why bother

Someone is selling Lumia 520s on Amazon for £110.

The fact is that much like PCs, phones have basically hit a plateau. I don't need more speed - the bottleneck on my Nexus phone is with the network, not the phone. And it's not like I'm rendering frames for Peter Jackson. I use apps for telling me the next train home, playing some noddy games.

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Don't tell the D-G! BBC-funded study says Beeb is 'too right wing'

Tim Almond

Establishment Organisation

Ultimately, it's an organisation that depends on the state to keep it alive. Think it's going to give any oxygen to the views of PJ O'Rourke or Milton Friedman, and let people know that there's an alternative, and consign itself to having to compete in the market?

(the BBC gives airtime to the left, and to the old right, but rarely gives coverage to small-government libertarians).

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PHWOAR! Huh! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing, Prime Minister

Tim Almond
Facepalm

Re: He speaks with a forked tongue

"So wait, he is relying on the ISPs to work out how and what they will block, so does this mean different ISPs will block different things (and will worry about the govt coming down on them for not doing a good enough job?). You are not going to block soft-core porn (yet) or exploitation of children and over-sexualisation of them (which in my mind is a lot worse than adult porn being out there)"

No. the ISPs aren't worried at all, because they know that it's just PR guff. One is filtering (TalkTalk) and has a niche. Some parents are especially worried about it and switching to them.

The other 3 big ones are being begged by government SpAds to carry on as they are, but to manipulate the wording so it looks like "on by default", but isn't. Not to protect kids but just to make Cam look good. But as that was leaked by one of the ISPs, I think we know how they feel. And then there's dozens of small ISPs out there that aren't being addressed by that letter.

My guess, the ISPs haven't agreed to anything. They didn't when Clare Perry lied that they had agreed to act a few weeks ago. But while you can go to war with a junior MP in Marlborough, you can't really do the same with the PM. My guess is that they'll ignore it. Cam is toast as PM anyway, so string it out long enough, the problem will go away.

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That enough, folks? Starbucks tosses £5m into UK taxman's coffers

Tim Almond
Stop

Re: So: basically it's a protection racket

"Personally I like the idea of a government capable of paying for hospitals, roads, schools, police, and so on. I'm also coming round to the idea of adding the guillotine to that list."

If that was all government was, and was all done in an efficient manner, we'd have 20% tax.

Education costs £99bn. That's just over a grand each.

Health costs £130bn. Around a grand and a half each.

Roads? Well, the road fund license more than covers that.

Policing? £40bn at most. And a lot of that comes from your council tax.

So, that's around 1/3rd of the total government expenditure of 722bn. And a lot of that is badly run. Thanks, but the state can burn someone else's money before mine.

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Former Microsoft Windows chief: I was right to kill the Start button

Tim Almond
Go

With one exception (he works for Microsoft), every single .net developer I know that has converted to Win8 has subsequently installed Start8.

People are used to it. They've been using it for 15 years. And as far as I'm concerned, it's far better than the start screen. Why? Because it's hierarchical. I can put all my graphics programs (that I don't use that often) in a "graphics" menu with a folder for each program below it.

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If you've bought DRM'd film files from Acetrax, here's the bad news

Tim Almond
FAIL

DRM=Not property

You think you bought that movie, but actually, you just rented it for as long as the owners wanted. Another company can buy them out, shut them down and fail to honour the contract that customers made with that business.

That's why I buy my media on discs. I don't mind renting with DRM, but all my movies are mine.

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Mobile tech destroys the case for the HS2 £multi-beellion train set

Tim Almond
Stop

Re: Sensible hat on - a better use of £12bn

An "embarrasment"? What's this, keeping up with the Schmidts and the Duponts?

I couldn't care less if France has fast rail or not. Dubai has the smallest skyscraper on earth. Mecca has the largest clock face. So what? If the Germans, French or Arabs want to blow their money on boondoggles, they're welcome to it.

Personally, I'd rather the country spent my taxes wisely. And if fast rail doesn't add up, I'll keep with slow rail.

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Tim Almond
FAIL

Re: Past and future

That's a fallacious argument that assumes that no investment/spending is worthwhile.

If you can go from horse to train, the cost/benefit is immense. It's a total no-brainer. You can have people going from London to Bristol in a few hours (at Victorian speeds) rather than 2 days. Someone no-longer has to waste 4 days to go someone, but can do it in one day. No coaching inn costs.

We're talking about a change from an hour and a quarter to around 45 minutes.

It's like someone owning an old 386 PC and then buying an i3. Should they then buy an i7 that's barely going to improve their performance?

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Google's teeny UK tax bill 'just not right', thunders senior MP

Tim Almond
Go

Change the law then...

If she thinks they don't pay enough, change the tax law or shut up.

Personally, I avoid as much as possible. If you've got £11bn to spend on a 3 week hop, skip and jump competition, you don't need any more of mine.

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iPads in education: Not actually evil, but pretty close

Tim Almond
FAIL

Re: I disagree

Oh, please. You think Geeks are threatened by iPads? Who do you think is writing all the apps? Who do you think is still maintaining all the network infrastructure that they use? Or the websites that you access? If anything, iPads have earnt me money as I had to replace Flash with jQuery controls.

There's a lot of smart people in computing, and if they could get their programming done quicker, cheaper or more reliably on an iPad, they would. Same with authors, graphic designers and accountants. But, and I cannot emphasise this strongly enough, almost no-one is using an iPad as a device to produce things. If you want kids to learn how to play Angry Birds, post on Facebook or look at cat photos, fine, but I thought schools had loftier aims than that.

As for that article that you linked to, there is nothing in there that couldn't also be done with a laptop.

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Uni profs: Kids today could do with a bit of 'mind-crippling' COBOL

Tim Almond
FAIL

Very Bad Advice

"COBOL is good for another 10 years thanks to its huge presence in mainframes and on Unix systems running mission-critical apps in banks and government."

Right, and how many jobs do they think that is, in total? People making occassional updates to overnight batch or inland revenue systems? How many people do they think these organisations already have who are in their late 40s/early 50s who are just looking towards retirement?

I have lots of mates that once knew COBOL and a couple of them are still doing it. Most have moved on to .net, PHP, Java or whatever else.

There are 17 jobs that come up for COBOL on Jobserve, most of which have it as a minor skill. That compares with 2000 C# jobs and 600 PHP jobs.

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Silicon Roundabout worthies in £2m UK.gov cash battle royale

Tim Almond
FAIL

London

If it doesn't exist in London, as far as politicians and mainstream media are concerned, it doesn't exist.

the whole "silicon roundabout" shows just how London-centric these people are. There's a ton of startups in the Reading/Bracknell area but they're completely oblivious to it as it isn't a tube ride away or run by one of their pals.

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Cambridge boffins fear 'Pandora's Unboxing' and RISE of the MACHINES

Tim Almond
WTF?

In other news...

... still no cure for cancer.

Presumably someone in Cambridge is researching development of viruses that can be deployed via an Apple Mac to destroy an alien invasion.

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How can the BBC be saved from itself without destroying it?

Tim Almond
Go

Make the License Fee Optional

The BBC might be independent, but that doesn't stop it from being biased. And it isn't biased towards "the left" but towards itself and the establishment. Any opportunity to bash the free market will be taken. They will automatically side with NGOs like War on Want and Greenpeace against companies, before even checking the accusations they are making. The question is never "minister, don't you think we have enough government?" but "minister, don't you think this extra chunk of government being suggested is a good idea?".

I'd like someone to actually produce some evidence to show that in say, news, they do any more public good than the free press.

Most importantly, we no longer have the limited amount of media channels that we had in the 1960s. I grew up with 3 channels and you can understand that government might want to ensure that you get diversity, but in these days of Freeview, satellite and the internet, there's plenty of diversity. On YouTube, I can watch videos of economists talking about Hayek, 90 minute reviews of the Star Wars prequels, performances of Verdi's Requiem and a bloke doing a metal version of Gangnam Style.

And there's no reason today that it can't be done by subscription and a smart card.

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Are you an IT pro? It's no longer safe to bet your career on Microsoft

Tim Almond
FAIL

Inaccurate

"Developers face the problem that MS doesn’t love them anymore, seeing us as disloyal peasants, best expressed when Visual Studio Express was intentionally crippled to produce only Metro (or No-tro, or whatever it’s called) apps."

You're 5 months out of date. Microsoft relented on that and have a version for Windows 8 and for Windows desktop. Because they... errr... listened to those "disloyal peasants".

Personally, as an ASP.NET/C#/SQL/XAML developer, the one thing that I'll always credit Microsoft for is that they love developers. I got a free day covering Azure, days like the DDD days, free evenings with pizza going over technologies, Microsoft people on Twitter and blogs who are happy to talk about stuff.

And honestly, ASP.NET MVC is a dynamite development platform. Nothing comes close for building a solid web application.

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