224 posts • joined Wednesday 25th April 2007 11:27 GMT
I've also got a Three MiFi. I've been bouncing round the country a bit recently, and not had any problems with Three coverage anywhere I've been. It even worked (just about) in a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere in South Wales where I expected to have nothing, and also now works in my flat in Altrincham where it never used to.
I happily live off the MiFi when I'm travelling for work now, I don't even try the hotel WiFi any more.
I gave up on a DAB clock radio for the same reason.
On the Sony FM job it was to replace, one button press gets me a 90 minute sleep on the last FM station.
The stupid DAB wants me to turn it on, select the right source, then press a bunch of buttons to get sleep going.
The only reason I wanted to replace the Sony was I was getting interference which I thought was the tuner chip dying. Turned out the interference was from a dying DECT phone base station sat next to it, the clock radio lives on.
a) Alter the angle of the individual window panels so that they point up, or outwards. Or, you could get really clever and make them steerable, see b)
b) Put a solar collector above the affected area, either photo-voltaic or simple water heater. If you go with steerable window panels in a), it needn't be enormous. Not cheap, but it'll pay for itself eventually and you'd probably get a grant off the government.
c) Put a non-reflective coating on the affected windows. Cheap-ish, but the heat has to go somewhere so it'll pummel the air con, and the rooms will be darker.
Talk to the Spaniards, they just built a power station that does this deliberately. I think there's a couple in the US, too.
Doors won't open
I always wonder why people care when some berk tries to open an airliner door in flight.
1) it's locked
2) You have to pull the door inwards, swing it, then push it back through the hole to open it. The airliner is pressurised, so there's a few tons of air pushing the door against it's frame. Unless you simultaneously de-pressurise the plane, you've no chance (same concept as opening a car door under water).
Much better to sit there laughing at them while they tire themselves out heaving on the handle. Worst they'll do is bend the handle.
I'd avoid cheap tools
I don't have experience of these particular tools, but I'd not get one that only costs £7.
I had a £10 no-name one before my Leatherman Wave that lasted about 3 months. I've had my Wave the best part of 10 years.
If I had to have a tiny tool, I'd have a Leatherman Micra. More expensive, but worth it in my opinion.
Oh, and I'd also recommend getting one with locking blades, I had a Swiss Army-type one (not Victorinox) that closed on my fingers no end of times. Luckily that one was so blunt it didn't do any damage, the Leatherman would've had my fingers off.
Includes other cards
I read a story about this elsewhere, BBC I think, that lists about 6 other cards that are also included.
I don't remember them all but the M3, that I've got for my DS Lite, was definitely on the list.
I'd hang on a bit if you're planning to use Calibre to manage the new Kindle.
Chances are it'll work fine once the support's been added, but they've not confirmed that the new Kindle doesn't have extra lock-downs yet.
Here's the note on the Calibre forum: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92546
They want £50 to upgrade from a 320Gb to a 500Gb drive?? You can buy a 500Gb drive outright for not much more than that.
I suppose there's DRM of some sort on there to stop you upgrading the drive yourself.
You can use a piece of software called Calibre to transfer books to the Kindle over USB. I use it with Stanza on the iPod Touch, and it's very nice, even downloads cover art once you give it the ISBN of the book.
It copes with most incoming text file formats and handles the conversion to the native format of the reader.
calibre-ebook.com is the site.
Stuffed up car integration
It looks like the iTunes database format has changed, as now I've put iOS 4 on my Touch the car thinks it's got no tracks on it.
Oh well, back to iOS 3.
They've pulled an Apple
This is what the original MiFi (Huawei E5830) should have been. I'm definitely upgrading mine.
To the person asking about an unlock, have a look here: http://tinyurl.com/32r39vp. I've not got around to unlocking mine yet, but I couldn't find any reports of it breaking things. That's for the original one, no idea whether it will work for this new one - I suspect not.
Blurring doesn't work...
... with vintage-style white-on-black plates.
That's my grandad's old place, before he died.
Blurring doesn't always work on modern plates, either.
Problem for me is...
I don't use the same handset every day. Presumably the RFID chip is integrated into the handset body, so is not transferrable to a different handset.
I normally use a Nokia 6230i but if I need GPS I take my Garmin NavTalk, for example.
There's also the issue of lost handsets. If I drop my phone in the canal, it's no great loss - get the SIM replaced (if it's not a PAYG), dig another ancient brick out of the box, sorted. With this, I'd have to cancel the credit card account the chip was registered against, get (buy, most likely) a new handset with the RFID chip, and get it configured against the right account.
Differences with the Three version
I've also got a Three-branded E5830, and there are a couple differences between the unbranded version and the Three version.
Unless I'm missing something, the Three version doesn't have the web-based setup system.
You also don't have the auto-connect option, unless it's in the management software that refuses point-blank to work on my netbook. Which is a pain, as I have to leave about 20 seconds between switch on and enabling wifi, and enabling wifi and starting the data connection.
I've used mine with a Nokia N800 and 5530, an iPod Touch and a couple of netbooks. It works very well sat still, but seems to get confused easily if you're moving.
Anyone tried it?
Has anyone tried using a cut-down mini-SIM in the micro-SIM slot in an iPad? I wouldn't put it past Apple to put something in there to detect that and disable the 3G.
Like the reverse of what Three did to stop their SIMs being used in 2G phones - they put an application on the SIM that detects the lack of a 3G radio and turns the SIM off. The iPad could detect the lack of (something) on the SIM and disable cellular data.
Can't do 1280x720 at 1000fps
One slight correction - the resolution drops as the frame rate increases. You're down to 120fps at 640x480, so it's going to be a hundred or so pixels at 1000fps, like the previous high-speed Casios.
You almost had me interested there, 1000fps at 1280x720. Ah, well.
Preset time skip
You want a Sony DVD Recorder/HD-DVR. It's only got 1 tuner and the software's not brilliant, but it does have a button that skips forward in 30s chunks and back in 5s chunks. If you keep hitting it, the amount it skips with each press increases.
Takes me about 5s to skip 4 mins-worth of ads.
TiVo's originally had this too, but I think it got pulled from later boxes.
Mine's a something-890, but they're all the same apart from the hard disc size.
The first portable I used was a Compaq Portable 3 - mains-driven lump with a gas-plasma screen. You could put full-length ISA cards in ours though, which meant we could set a demo SCO Xenix system up on it with an ISA serial card for terminals. You wouldn't want it on your lap though, probably break your legs.
At about the same time, the company also had early Toshiba portables with plasma displays. Weighed a ton, and there was no battery.
I had a Toshiba T1200 for a while. 80x24 blue LCD, battery was more of a UPS than a way of working away from mains.
Is there a good site to go to where I can find out what you can and can't do with Android?
Like Exchange push email access, what the browser is like, pointers to extra software that's worth installing.
Not entirely sure where to start with this lot...
I rather like the theory that the moon is a giant water balloon...
"Wouldn't it seem logical for the earth to have a reciprocal effect on the moon - but it doesn't"
Yeah it does. The Earth's gravitation field is what stops the moon drifing off into space. You wouldn't get tides even if there were oceans because the moon rotates with the same period as the Earth (what are the chances of that happening, BTW?) but gravity does have an effect.
"Why aren't core tests done before blasting it"
They were, during the original Apollo landings. Not frantically deep, granted, but samples were taken.
"blasting the moon could send it out of orbit "
We're hitting it with something that was launched from the Earth's surface, so it'll be a couple of tons at most. We'v e got a pretty good idea what the mass of the moon is - 7.36 × 10^22 KG , I assume by measuring the effect of the Earth and the Sun on it. It'll have as much effect on the orbit of the moon as a bug hitting the windscreen of a train does, possibly less.
"which would kill us"
Removing the moon would severely screw with things but I doubt it would kill us outright. Hitting something on the way out, Venus or the Sun say, would spoil your day though.
"There are members of the concerned general public who are not werewolves, pagans or anarcho-primitives?
Looks like PayPal's attitute roughly is 'We don't care what you sell to hack other people, but help people hack us and we'll stamp on your nuts and kidnap your puppy'. Nice, community-minded people.
Impressed and annoyed (at the same time)
I had a hire car with a DAB radio recently, a Mondeo. I had Radio 2 on DAB all the way from Altrincham to Shanklin on the Isle of Wight with no gaps, much better than I was expecting. I was surprised that it cut back to FM for traffic announcements though.
I've got a little DAB/MP3 player thingy that used to work perfectly if the headphone cable was in exactly the right place, doesn't get a dicky bird in the new office in Warrington. Chewed through batteries too, the AA rechargeable ran the MP3 for days but managed 15 hours on DAB.
The MagicBox DAB radio at home works fine on the window sill, three feet into the room and it breaks up all the time. That may have more to do with the foil lined wall insulation though.
I do like the extra channels on DAB - The Arrow, Planet Rock, Smooth Radio and Jazz FM are regulars for me. My problem is all the kit I've got with FM and no DAB - the car radio, clock radio, 2 phones etc. FM better not disappear until all that lot has been replaced, which will be several years away.
Which is easier to do
Which is the easier landing to do, at night, in a howling gale? An arrester hook or vertical?
Not that it'll make any difference to the decision...
If they're sending a Hummer
Maybe they can give it a robotic tow rope and use it to drag out the one stuck in the sand.
Also, to the person wondering why there's no crater; if you're that close to a a rock that big that hit the planet from space, you're probably stood in the crater.
Here's my opinion:
10" is too big. This thing's going to be a big as my 2133 (thinner maybe), so I might as well take the 2133 and get a full OS and a keyboard. I'd want a 6-7-inch screen at most.
$699 will translate to £599. For an iPod Touch on steroids. No way.
I tolerate the limitations of the Touch's OS because of the size. On a 10" screen I'd expect a proper OS that can run a proper browser, proper mail client, and stream audio in the background.
But then the iPod section is probably the least used bit of my Touch, so I may not be the target market anyway...
The WiFi detector - if you've already got an iPhone or iPod Touch, you can get software WiFi detectors off the app store. I use WiFiTrak, but there are loads of them. It will show you networks that are technically too weak to use so don't show up in the standard network list, so you know to do a bit of wandering watching the meter to get closer.
Wind-up radio - the Tesco own-brand equivalent is £8, has a good LED torch on it, and I'm sure is lighter than 700g - could be a lot smaller, of course. Wouldn't say I use mine extensively, but it's still going and the charge lasts amazingly well with no use for a NiMH. Tuning is a bit fiddly as it's not geared.
One point - the solar phone charger, are you sure the battery's only 150mAh? That's tiny, should be 1500mAh surely.
I'm one of the sad gits that named machines after Blake's 7 characters. My main PC is still called Cally (my favourite character) and the laptop is Orac.
Zen was my Windows 2000 server/WinRoute machine, but bit the dust years back when the CPU cooling fan died.
Tarrant was a media machine hooked up to the hifi and TV, which is now a PowerMac G4 imaginatively called 'PowerMacG4'. I had a Jenna too, can't remember what that did.
Years back I worked on an NCR mini. There was a process, a compiler or something, on there called SLARTIBART, because in one of the status screens it had FAST in the column after the name.
I 'acquired' loads of these voice packs, most of them never even made it onto the unit.
I can recommend 'Lady Newsreader' if you can get it. She's a bit prissy and is missing the 'pull a U-turn' sample, but the instructions are really clear.
One voice set I'd want is from the woman that did Orange's original IVR system. Gorgeous voice, but maybe a bit too gentle..
GPS is not accurate enough
Yer basic GPS is not accurate enough for safety-critical uses.
My speed camera detector warns me of 30mph mobile camera sites along-side the M6, and the last time I used it the Tom Tom thought I was driving through fields rather than on the M4. The camera detector also still thought there was a 50 mph SPECS site in non-existent roadworks on the M5.
In those cases I called it a stupid piece of junk and ignored it. If the GPS was hooked up to the car's throttle and brakes, it would have thrown out the anchors and I'd have been rammed by anything without a limiter.
Having said that, a GPS-based limit warning system could be useful. The Tom Tom has this, but a lot of the limits are wrong so it bongs at you for no reason.
It's an extended-range EV - the engine only drives a generator to keep the batteries charged, it doesn't drive the wheels at all.
The 1.0 3-cylinder is the one out of the Corsa. Useless, under-powered lump, but sounds nice when you wring it's neck. Develops 60PS, more than enough for a battery charger.
It's a basic two-channel amp with tiny 4.5-inch speakers a few inches apart, no way is this worth two hundred quid. I suspect the iPod dock on the top more than doubled the price.
To give you an idea, these: http://www.absolutemusic.co.uk/shop/view_product.php?product=behms16 are roughly the same spec., you can move them apart to get a stereo image and they cost £40.
A pair of Wharfedale Active Diamonds (http://www.htfr.com/more-info/MR266129) will wipe the floor with this, and you'd still have plenty left over for an iPod dock.
Paramotor vs. tilt-rotor mono-thingy
The para-motor is cheap, but it can't land vertically or take off again under it's own steam. It's slow, not overly quiet, flies low, and in flight the parachute must make a tempting target for AK47-ers on the ground.
On the other hand you can throw it out of a plane, and it's cheap enough it doesn't really matter if it doesn't come back.
I think they do the same kind of thing in different ways. There are jobs where one is suited over the other, I don't think it's a 'one or the other' situation.
From the spec. list
> Electronic shift PRNDL (shift controller):
How do you get "low" out of a single-speed gearbox? Maybe it's got the transfer case out of a Land Rover too.
> One 12V auxiliary power outlets and one 12V USB Outlet
USB is 5 volt not 12. There's going to be a few cooked iPods if it's 12v.
> electric inverter compressor air conditioning / Rear window defogger with timer
What does it do to the range if you use them.
> Solar Energy-Reflecting glass
So your GPS won't work without an external antenna, which won't stick because the body's plastic.
Only helps if you can already shoot
This app will only help if you already know how to shoot properly, it takes the donkey work out of compensating for wind etc. It won't make your average man, or girl, on the street much (if any) more accurate.
There's more to long-range target shooting than pointing the rifle in the right direction and pulling the trigger. Actually, pulling the trigger sharply would be one way of guaranteeing a miss...
Their bacon sandwiches and coffee are nice, I have ended up binning the hash brown that comes with them a few times though. The nuggets used to be good, I've not had them for a while. All the burgers just up drop a sauce/mayo/lettuce combo down your front, so I avoid them.
To the person scavenging receipts for the password, if that's in the UK you don't need to. On the Cloud portal page that comes up, click the McDs logo and you get a page asking for your name and address. Enter any old rubbish in there, and you're away. The user name and password are for Cloud subscribers.
Playgrounds and Chargers
In school in the late 70s/early 80s had a little pocket radio that I used like a Walkman with a mono earpiece. I don't think that ever killed it's 9v battery in the time I had it.
Slow chargers are much easier on the batteries than fast ones. There's an ideal charge current based on the capacity (two times?); any more than that and you'll cook them in short order, but I'd imagine modern batteries are better able to handle ham-fisted charging.
All the NiCDs and NiMHs I've killed have just died of old age, and my Ansmann PowerLine 5 has revived some pretty poorly ones.
Fiver and Five US
> Just checked ... there aint enough capacity at the moment ...
Which is complete rubbish. The channels are on Sky at the moment, all they need to do is turn the encryption off.
The real reason is either they don't have FTA rights for the programmes or they still have a while to go on the encryption contract with Sky.
Paris - why not, I quite like that picture, plus even she probably knows that FreeSat is just the non-encrypted stuff on Astra 2.
Someone will steal it
If someone can pinch a 120-foot radio tower without anyone noticing, I doubt these will present much of a challenge...
Title in song lyrics
> Good luck with finding a rhyme for "Quantum of Solace".
Managed it with 'The Spy Who Loved Me' :-).
The only other title that wasn't in the lyrics (apart from Dr No, that didn't have a specific song) is 'Octopussy', they could at least have a try.
I could do with one of these on my car, I can think of a few 'floor it and hope' near-blind junctions it would help at.
Also, it wouldn't be a lot of use on the US border. The top-whack range is 8km, so you'd need one at least every 4 miles (to give a bit of overlap) and that would only find the pick-up trucks. To find people you'd need one every half-mile. The US/Mexico border is 1969 miles long.
At 60k a pop it's probably still cheaper than the current border project, but you'd have to find a way to power 4000 of things in such a way that the cables won't get nicked for the scrap copper.
It's an RJ-45 Ethernet cable!
I've got a huge drawer full of the damn things - I wonder how many I can flog on eBay for £250?
I might get £300 for the 10m blue ones, but the half-metre yellow ones are probably worth less.
A very similar one
A large number of years back, I once spent most of a day working out why a mouse was inverting it's movement (left moves cursor right etc.).
Turned out that she had a new laptop, and was holding the track ball controller that was supposed to be clipped to the side of the machine upside-down and moving it like a mouse.
It was only a comment from her about the mouse buttons being in an awkward place that turned the light-bulb on.
Used an iPhone?
> i'm sorry, but have you actually used an iPhone?
Yes. For about 2 days, before it went back in the box. I'll put the v2 software on it when it comes out, but I have a feeling it still won't be usable.
The keyboard is useless. It's semi-usable for typing actual words as it tries to guess what you're trying to type, but for passwords and other random sequences it guesses wrong 90% of the time. I had 10 goes at getting the iPhone on my wireless LAN and it screwed the WPA keyphrase up every time. And of course you can't put the password in a text file and paste it into the prompt.
You can't use a stylus on the screen. This means you're forever zooming in and out to make buttons etc. big enough to hit.
No copy and paste. How can any phone, let alone a supposedly 'smart' phone, be taken seriously without copy/paste?
No way to send files to it.
No To-Do application. Out of the box anyway, mine has one now...
Bluetooth is seriously crippled, I'm not sure why they even bothered.
It's a shame, because the interface makes it a really nice phone to use. The mute/volume/transfer to speaker etc. screen when you're in a call is by far the best I've come across.
McDonalds and Nokia
McDonalds bacon rolls are very nice, shame they don't do them all day. The toasted deli sandwich things are quite nice too. I tend to avoid the actual burgers, though...
The very worst fast food I've had was a Burger King at some service station on the A1 up by Newcastle. Cold chips and soggy onion rings that tasted like they'd been cooked in sugar. 'Orrible.
I have a Nokia 6230i because work gave it to me, and a Nokia N800. They are both what the previous versions (6230 and 770) should have been.
Cow on a lead
The Times' picture has the cow with a harness around it's nose, with the keeper holding the lead.
Possibly a bit pointless? If that cow decided it was going, I doubt she could do much about it...
Pretty robust device
But I suppose there are limits...
Mine's survived being thrown at the wall and onto the table a few times, effing useless device. The metal upright of a shelf unit put a dent in the casing, but so far it still works.
After 6 goes at typing (no copy/paste, remember) a random 35-character WPA key into it, I've given up on it entirely.