318 posts • joined 25 Apr 2007
Re: I remember a time...
> Light/radio/waves (in space)
I see where you're going, but radio and light in space are far too easy to destroy. A fraction of a degree off on one of the antennas and you're not pointing at the same planet let alone another tiny antenna.
Light is even worse, a stray rock drifts into the beam and your data is toast.
> Whatever the dreamers can come up with
How about storing data at the molecular level in a man-made lump of granite? It's been done with organic cells already.
Re: I remember a time...
> You would need a base reflective layer (a la CD/DVD etc ) (on write-once optical tape)
Not necessarily, you could put the read sensor on the other side of the tape and shine the laser through it. The tape is linear so the heads won't be moving, there won't be any alignment issues.
Re: ..never buy on a promise
> why? What does ICS do that 2.3 doesnt?
GPU acceleration of browser rendering, IIRC.
> I can only think of NFC and face unlock.
The San Diego has got an NFC reader under Gingerbread. I've got no tags to test it with, so I have to trust them that it works.
About app compatibility - I've got an Orange San Diego, and so far I've found a total of two apps that don't work.
One is KeePassDroid, which loops back to the password entry screen all the time. I'm using AstonSoft Password Manager at the moment.
The other is WinAmp. It used to work but the latest update seems to have broken it, so it'll probably get fixed soon. I went back to the stock music player.
Everything else works - Opera, TuneIn Radio, 3G Watchdog, CoPilot navigation, eBay, IMDb, QuickOffice, DropBox all work perfectly. Even one-man-band type stuff like Open Intents File Manager works. I don't play games, so a lot of the 25% that doesn't work could be games.
Anyone else want to list what doesn't work?
Sony Vegas? I use it on a Core i7, and it copes well with 720p MOVs. Vegas Studio Platinum can be had for around £30 off Amazon or eBay.
AVCHD is the native format for Sony camcorders IIRC, and Vegas can directly import from Sony cameras.
Re: Riot gear
Sounds like a job for a smartphone app, with the phone in something like an OtterBox securely tied to you.
Start with something with a decent camera, like a Sony Experia S. You'd need to lock the exposure, or have it adjust slowly, if the camera API on Android allows that. Buffer the writes to SD via the internal storage with random file names, and/or dump the video to DropBox.
If you already using a big case, you could duct-tape a big LED bike light to it for more light, and choose one with a flashing mode for a bit of "get-your-own-back"...
Re: No GoPro?
Provided it's got a tripod socket you can mount any camera on a bike, handlebar mounts are dirt-cheap on eBay.
Re: Am I the only one..
Yep, another Sennheiser fan here. I'm still using some MX500s that must be getting on for 10 years old now. I've got some MX660 and MX880s too - all brilliant, but I don't like the sticky rubber cable on the new ones. I hope the 500s never die!
I've even got some MX 2-somethings (MX-260?) for £10 that are surprisingly non-rubbish for so little money.
CX300 Mark 2s are worth a look if you want noise-isolating cans, but I'd give the original CX300s a miss. Very sensitive to where you put them in your ear, and a bit bass-light even when you put them in right.
I was hoping the article would try and work out how much the endorsements added to the cost, and would compare them to non-endorsed kit for the same sort of money.
Re: Bit poor if...
If it's the same as the 50p-a-day data on pre-pay, it's actually midnight on the day after. If you time it right, you can get 2 days use out of it.
Re: IPcop and NAS
You could run the firewall in a VM on the server. That's what I do - Astaro runs in a VM on a VMWare ESXi server. You'd need two network cards in the server, one for the local network, one that just connects to the DSL modem/cable box/whatever. For the server, I use an HP MicroServer - low power, and the fan is barely audible.
I'm toying with using a low power PC like this one to use as a print server, running XP or maybe Server 2003. ESXi doesn't get on with USB printer/scanners, it barely does USB storage.
Re: Historical Cost of Nukes
> Square miles of land, worldwide, rendered uninhabitable or unusable by renewable
Quite a lot, I would think - have you seen the size of solar collector power stations?
This one: http://tinyurl.com/yw8jbd claims to be the first, and is from 2005 so I'd imagine they are bigger by now, and has 624 120 square metre mirrors.
Plus, you flood valleys when you build dams for hydro-electric power.
> Casualties arising from renewable power?
Loads of birds get clouted by wind turbine blades.
Incidentally, a total of 70 people have been killed directly by nuclear power station incidents - http://tinyurl.com/yunmz7. 112 people were killed building the Hoover Dam alone - http://tinyurl.com/2dudhca
> Requirement for expensive monitoring equipment, regulatory oversight or highly
> trained maintenance staff? None, slight and slim, respectively.
I'd rather hope solar collectors have trained staff and monitoring kit - they work at temperatures high enough to melt salt.
> The control key is in the correct place, next to the Windows key.
Yes, but a standard keyboard doesn't have the Fn key.
I'd argue that it's more important for Ctrl to be the left-most key than to be next to the Windows key.
You use things like Ctrl-Alt-Del and Ctrl-C/Ctrl-V regularly, and without thinking. The Fn is rarely used (by me, at any rate), and when you do you have to stop and look for the icon on the function key to press with it anyway.
Re: That Trackpad
> The wrong way round Fn key is a woeful mistake and I can honestly say it frustrates me at
> least once a week by not actually copying something because I've pressed Fn+C. I've used
> them for about 6 years and still can't do it without thinking about it first.
I just took the Fn keycap off on the Lenovo laptops I've had. It still works, you just press the rubber dome in, but your finger seems to automatically look for the first proper key, which is now Ctrl. Can you still easily flick the keycaps off on chiclet keyboards?
They put a function in the BIOS to swap it over, but that doesn't help when the control freak IT department put a password on the BIOS...
> basically the bottom of the whole pad is hinged as the left / right mouse button
> doesn't sounds so bad until you try to click and drag, it is a finger bending feat of
Can't you double-tap and drag, like you could on the old trackpads? That's the end of my plan to buy an X121 if you can't. The other thing you can do is use the track-nipple buttons with your other hand.
13-inch MacBook Air is 1400x900, 13-inch Asus Zen (and one of the Sonys I think) is 1600x900. That's about your lot though. There is the Lenovo T420s with 1600x900, but that's a 14-inch.
Low resolution laptop screens really annoy me. I have a years-old HP netbook with a 9-inch 1280x720 panel (and a CPU that's slower than a glacier, but that's beside the point), why are still getting 14 and 15-inch laptops with 1366x768?
Proper monitors aren't much better. 27-inch, but only 1920x1080??
Re: Lets pick over all the faults here...
> well most people use webmail over https which wont tell you anything about where its
> destined etc...
If you're using webmail, all the information will be on the webmail provider's server for ever, and will be handed over to Government types with very few questions asked. Webmail is probably the *least* secure way of doing email unless it's your server.
> Skype and other methods of communication." (BBC) - yes and these changes wont help
> that since yet again we're using encrypted connections to a website.
And again, details will be handed over by Skype etc. on request, assuming there isn't a direct tap into them already.
They were caiught with their pants down by the use of BlackBerry Messenger to organise the riots a while back, they are determined that it won't happen again. They people they *say* it's targetted at already know how avoid getting caught
Re: I've Already Installed Tor...
> I'm not sure why people keep going on about SSL, it is completely readable when you
> have intercepted the entire communication from it's initiation.
No it isn't, you'd need access to the private certificate on the server to decrypt it. Only the public certificate is sent out, to allow the other end to encrypt stuff.
You can do a 'man-in-the-middle', where you decrypt SSL on the way then re-encrypt it, but it'll set the alarm bells off in the browser as the server name won't match the destination address.
Re: Bunch of moaning whingers.
> given you've a new unproven technology which not many people can receive, what would you
> put on it to test? Britain's Got Voice?
You can beam Britain's Got No Talent (and all the rest of the 'reality' shite) straight into space for all I care. Gathering it all together on a no-bit-rate streaming channel would be a good idea.
Very similar here too...
Started on a ZX81, moved on to an Acorn Electron, then an Amstrad PC1512. Not sure I ever had a modem on those machines, I think my first was a 14,400 on an Olivetti 486 when I got my own place. I'd had modems at work for a while, though.
Excitement at school when the Research Machines 380Z was finally pensioned off for a network of BBC Micros with a gigantic Winchester hard disc in the corner. It was probably 5 or 10 meg, but was physically the size of a BBC. That would have been about 1985.
My 'rack' of servers is two HP ProLiant Microservers, one on top of the other. One is a 6Tb (4x2Tb RAID-5) NAS, the other is a VMWare ESXi host. I seem to be buying too many tablets at the moment, I have a ViewSonic ViewPad 7, a ZTE V9A and an iPad, and I'm still eyeing the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7-inch.
> Why flying over land at 10000m height, your cellphone/mobile device can easily drown out
> thousands of devices on the ground, which communicate to several cell towers.
Bollocks it could. If that was the case someone standing next to the BTS would knock out everyone else using it. You might confuse the cellular network, but you won't 'drown out' anything.
> Also, it cannot be ruled out that a mobile phone transmitter running at full power will
> interfere with the plane's receiver antenna/reciever, despite the fact that it works at different
A GSM phone has a 2 watt transmitter.
Sutton Coldfield is a TV and radio transmitter station, near Birmingham in the UK. It puts out a million watts on TV, and 250,000w on FM radio i.e. at least 125,000 times the power of a phone.
Sutton Coldfield is fairly near Birmingham airport, which has a radar system. I don't know the output of it, but it will be several kilowatts.
A mobile phone's output is insignificant compared to them, and yet planes don't fall out of the sky.
Hobbled by OS
I'd agree that the 900 is hobbled by it's OS.
It's supposed to be the top of the range, but it's got a single-core processor, 800x480 display and no micro-SD slot - all limitations imposed by the OS. £460 is way too much for those specs, an Experia S is £80 less.
> I'm with Tony - similar (empirical) experience here
Me too. I've got four of these, all no-name eBuyer specials, forming two networks. Two link the living room kit (Blu-ray etc.) to the upstairs network where the Astaro gateway and NAS are, the other two link the Astaro to the DSL modem downstairs.
ADSL still works, so does DAB and FM. The radios in the taxis that sometimes park over the road cause more interference.
I wonder whether people are mixing these adapters up with broadband over power line? That used the national grid for broadband distribution, and was proved to cause interference.
Re: Hang on...
> Yup, works a treat with Google Navigation as long as you remember to pre-cache the map tiles.
Or even a 'proper' navigation app like Copilot. 8 gig is enough for both the euro and US version and all the maps, and you can shove a 32Gb micro-SD in for some tunes in the car.
Android 2.2 puts me off, but now I know it has GPS it's a little bit tempting...
Re: Pearl Harbor Sucked...
If you want a laugh, have a look at the 'Goofs' for that one.
Re: Not the worst.
Not seen that one (Troll 2), but surely it doesn't beat Lake Placid 2 to the title?
Mega Python vs. Gatoroid must also be in the running, but that was only really made to have Debbie Gibson and Tiffany fight each other so maybe doesn't count.
Re: I've said it before, and I'll say it again ...
Completely agree. Recently had the same experience, except I was in Boston in the US.
First time on the wrong side of the road in a left-hand drive car was the 20 mile drive to the hotel. I would not want to do that without a GPS, i did not know that motorway junctions there sometimes have two exits depending which way you want to go on the road you're joining.
I've had a few WTFs from the GPS too though. TomTom tried to take me down a farm track going from Leatherhead to a hotel on Epsom Downs once. I just ignored it, and it recalculated - I think some people forget the GPS will recalculate the route if you go wrong, and think they will get lost if they don't obey every instruction.
Re: Let 3/Three die
No it isn't. They are (by a big margin) the only network I'd use for data, the tariffs from the others are daylight robbery.
They were the only mobile network that worked at a remote farm in Wales I stayed at once. T-Mobile just about worked if you leaned out of a window, the rest were non-existent.
Our work phones are mostly now on Orange, whose data network collapsed in a big heap a week or so ago. Not just 3G either, nothing worked for me for a day. They also have a habit of sending calls to voicemail without even ringing.
My opinion is they are the only UK network that takes data seriously, the rest do it because they have to.
> A grand total of 96 per cent of lost smartphones were accessed by the finders of the device.
The other 4% went straight for the factory reset and walked off with it :-)
The thieving ratbags want £15 a month to flick a switch at the exchange? I hope PlusNet weren't listening, I'm toying with switching to FTTC when the 80 meg stuff kicks in, but I'll not pay that much more.
The change to 80Mb/s is just a change to the encoding on the wire, it should be free.
3G is NOT single band
3G is most definitely not in a single band internationally.
Just about everywhere uses the 2.1Ghz band, but the same standard (W-CDMA) is on 850Mhz, 1700Mhz and 1900Mhz in the USA. It was at 900Mhz too, but I think that's died out now.
The iPad has 850/900/1900/2100Mhz 3G - the only place it won't work is T-Mobile at 1700Mhz, there it's restricted to EDGE speeds.
One slight issue...
It only works if the doors are already unlocked.
If you have keyless entry, it detects a hand going to open a door or the tailgate and unlocks the doors (to stop it unlocking when you are just walking up to/past it).
So, you're walking up with your hands full, and have to put everything down and go for the tailgate lock to unlock the doors, then pick all your stuff up and kick the back bumper to open the tailgate.
@Wize - I'm not sure on the Ford how you know it's locked when you walk away, but it should lock when you're near enough to hear it. On a Renault you hear the locks click and it beeps twice - frightened the life out of my Mum when she went to have a look at the Megane CC hire car I had once...
@Lee Dowling - the new Focus can be had with little rubber pads that spring out of the doors and stop you denting the car next to you, and at one time you could get a car battery that had emergency start extra capacity - not sure if they are still around.
Re: A product for the unsophisticated?
> simple battery case that I can fill with standard, cheap AA rechargeables or alkalines.
They exist too. I've got a PortaPow one I got off eBay for about 20 quid. I use hybrid NiMH rechargeables with mine. I suspect it'll get nowhere with an iPad, but I've charged an iPod Touch and the Three MiFi router OK with it.
Sounds like Sensurround from the mid 70s. Turn the bass up to 11, and put giant sub-woofers under the seats to vibrate everything. Like someone already said, Earthquake in 1974 was one film that used this system.
Sounds like this system has actuators in the seat bases so it can be more subtle and do slower movements.
Re: 8 minutes
> Is it too much to expect a (presumably) full time ambulance driver to know how to get
> anywhere within 8 minutes without a bloody map?
Yes, I'd say so. There are almost certainly addresses in the town I grew up in that I couldn't find without looking at a map, and 8 minutes from there (Marlborough, Wiltshire) would include a lot of tiny villages in the country.
It's definitely true of the town I live in now.
Or did you mean *with* a map?
I was interested from the perspective of cracking TrueCrypt. If you know what you're doing, this will never crack TrueCrypt:
1) TrueCrypt automatically dismounts volumes when you lock, log off, suspend or hibernate
2) There is also an inactivity timeout dismount option
3) It appears to not know about key files. It can beat on a Truecrypt volume with a single letter password and a key file until the universe explodes, without the key file it will never decrypt it.
Bumps and stuff
Having a bump on one of the buds is OK, so long as you know which one the bump is on.
The Sennheiser MX-880 doesn't. It has a bump on (I think) the left, and no other markings. Would it have killed them to put a line in the user guide telling you which channel has the bump?
Car hire companies
I think car hire companies do something similar, to stop you booking stuff they've not actually got.
I've had some distinctly odd results for a car for a Las Vegas trip I'm toying with, including $13,000/week for a Jeep Grand Cherokee which is probably more than the car is worth.
Not sure about this...
Very low res resistive screen, and you're not going to get much in 256Mb RAM - my Monte Carlo uses more than that doing nothing.
If you want Skype calling would you not be better off with an Orange San Francisco, even if it never leaves the house? More power and RAM, and an 800x480 capacitive screen. Also, Android 2.3-upwards (San Fran is 2.1 out of the box) has a built-in SIP internet call client
> It makes me wonder what impression this will leave on possible finders.
For all we know there is an alien race that considers plutonium a delicacy, and they send us an email thanking us for the packed lunch...
>Those first three come from the Boxee service, which basically just rounds up a bunch of films,
> TV programmes and other content from around the web and then drops you into a web
>browser in order to view them
Unless they've seriously nobbled this box compared to the D-Link, that's only part of what it does. You can set up file sources to your network or local storage and it will scan them and drag down poster art and film/series/episode details and present it in a list that sorts the episodes into seasons by series. For the most part it/'s automatic if you name the files right, but you have to help it to work out what's what sometimes.
> with no sign of the BBC iPlayer
There should be an iPlayer app. It's not brilliant, but it just about works...
I'm not a fan of the cube-that-sank-into-the-table design of the D-Link so this is tempting, but it's too expensive for now.
Any idea what the processor is? The D-Link has an Atom CE-4100 that does pretty well for what it is.
Re: the mouse
I thought the same (it's huge and ugly), but have a look at the original review where there's a picture of it being held.
It's about the size of your index finger...
You really need to consider the cost as well. Most of those 500Gb or 1Tb SSDs you gave as an example would cost more than the entire machine they are installed in.
In an ideal world we can get the hardware we want and not worry about the cost of it. Back here in the real world you have to strike a balance between what you want and what you can afford. Hybrid drives are a compromise - they give you some (most?) of the performance of an SSD at a price mere mortals can afford, and still give enough storage to be useful.
If you can afford a £3,000 SSD for a £1000 Ultrabook, go for it. I can't.
They do work...... but seem to be very sensitive to cable quality. Mine are no-name Ebuyer 85Mb/s jobs. Just having one of them on a four-way extension was enough to nobble 720p streaming. With them both plugged straight into a wall socket they'll do 1080p happily. It could be that yours were duff, of course...
You'd need accurate details of what is in the house to make sense of the 'leccy demand figures.
e.g., just as the plasma telly (that I haven't got, it's an LCD with the annoying dynamic brightness stuff turned off) drops it's consumption in a dark scene, the NAS decides to start all four discs because something wants some data, wiping out the drop from the telly.
The big lights in the kitchen (3x60w incandescents) use more power than most of the rest of the kit in the house. If I go and get a beer out of the fridge, power use goes up 200w for 20 secs.
Cool idea, but I don't think it'd work in the real world.
£250, and it goes 10m
This costs £250, and the range is only 10m?? That's not very far. and at 5Ghz anything in the way will cause serious attenuation.
How much does a 10m HDMI cable cost - £10 tops? Maybe I'm missing the point of this box.
Blurring from the vibration seems to be a common issue. The Gadget Show taped a GoPro Hero to a big-ish RC helicopter, IIRC. The video was unusable, it was blurry and shaking around, plus they nearly lost the camera when the heli crashed.
You might be able to rescue it a bit if you put the vdeo through the stabiliser in iMovie or Sony Vegas Studio.
The cameras on police helicopters are mounted in a vibration-isolating mount, which is a huge dome on the side. You could rig a gimbal mount for an RC copter, but it would be too heavy for it to lift.
Totally the wrong priority
That's right, speed up broadband in cities, where they already have FTTC, FTTP and fibre-optic cable TV, instead of putting broadband in where there is currently none.
One of the guys here wants to work from home, but can't. DSL struggles to a meg on a good day, and he barely gets 2G mobile let alone 3G. He's looking at satellite, but it's still a bit expensive, the monthly limits are low and the uplink speed is crap.
And they are spending £100 million putting better broadband in where they have already got 20 meg-plus.
Thanks guys. NOT.
> If I'd seen a spill of that gunk like that, I'd have recommended isolating the spill zone and
> evacuating the surrounding 5 kilometres!
And nuke the site from orbit, it's the only way to be sure.
Sorry, had to be done...
About 3 months ago I got a ProLiant MicroServer with 2x2Tb discs and a few other bits for about £380. Just the discs cost more than that now.
The annoying thing is I could do with another 2Tb drive, to make a 3 drive array. Maybe I should sell the two I've got and buy 4Tb+ drives for the same money in a 6 months time when sanity is restored.
If it's causing that much of an issue, maybe there's a case for a specialist "extracting (bits of) people from stupid places" team, so it doesn't take fire engines and people away from actually fighting fires.
It averages out at just over one incident per day (assuming that is 417 in a year), so 3 blokes in a Transit could probably handle the lot.
I have a feeling Make or something similar has already done it, but you could make a cordless version out of the guts of a Bluetooth headset.
You wouldn't actually need the base other than for charging the handset's battery, but you could make that into a charger for the iPhone (cordless induction charging for extra cool-ness).
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