567 posts • joined Wednesday 7th January 2009 17:02 GMT
Re: Right, time to sue the Android phone manufacturers.
Putting aside any possibility (almost certainly probable) that Google et al obtained/devised their technology before Apple in 2008 or not, in the US as I understand it, patent pending does not technically protect the filer, but regardless of that the intent of patents is that you are to actively develop the product or process or otherwise have a granted patent and/or already a product on the market.
But even regardless of that, before Google did it, it was a stupidly obvious way to have a phone unlock mechanism.
Prior art, failure to develop on patent filed and produce a marketable product, patent not granted before competition went to market, blatantly obvious.
But that all counts for nothing. USPTO will grant it. It will go to court Apple vs Samsung (never Google), Obama will comment that Apple is good for US and Samsung bad, Apple will win, Samsung pay Apple for a feature from Google that was never stolen from Apple in the first place for an obvious idea that wasn't patented correctly and Apple hadn't developed until way after the competition had. All perfectly fair in the land of the free.
The patent system has its theoretical benefits, but in general the whole system is so corrupt it would be far better to scrap patents entirely until someone comes up with a better one.
Re: Why Windows is doomed. @Filhart
"That's interesting as the Corporation I work for has gone from XP to 7, and the thing we noticed most was on the same hardware our computers needed more RAM to perform the same with 7 as when we were on XP"
Likely because Windows 7 installs will have been 64bit, which naturally uses more RAM. RAM is cheap however and more to the point 64bit Win7 lets you use all that 8GB of RAM whereas 32bit XP will barely let you use 3GB. Suddenly it's free to do far more at the same time and faster also.
Anyway, all this rubbish about boot times - the major audience for Windows now is corporates. Who aside from touch being ludicrous for a productive environment, generally leave their PCs on overnight or at least sleep / hibernate them. Boot time - non issue.
Re: Which one ? Windows 8 with luck
"There's an abundance of choice out there like Mint, Ubuntu, Arch, Fedora, and Debian. "
The vast majority of consumers would be utterly lost with any of these. More so the instant they are told they have to edit some config file and browse through dosens of linux forums to find out why they can't do something they can do easily with Windows (even Windows 8), or where instructions are written for Ubuntu but they've got any one of the huge number of other distributions. Or they buy some USB gadget but it won't work without recompiling the kernel or ripping drivers from a Windows install, hacking about with this and that, etc (I speak from experience here).
And god forbid they want to do some Excel work. Open Office is okay, if you want the equivalent of Excel 97 and don't mind it taking several minutes to launch and doesn't quite do what you're used to in Excel and isn't quite compatible with the latest Excel document formats, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I like linux and use it for what it's good for, as a server. I would not recommend it to my parents however (fairly representitive of the average consumer).
In fact I'm even recommending Windows Phone over Android as the former would be less confusing and less easy to get into a mess or download something they shouldn't and generate a lot of support calls.
Re: Fewer choices = worse
Fewer quality choices = worse
Not that I'd say Win Phone has quality choices, but I wouldn't want it to be filled with a million apps if they are the quality you get on Android, just so there's a chance one of them might actually be decent. Though a half a million are ad spamming crap games.
The only issues with RT
Really the only issues with RT are...
2. Not enough quality apps
And that's pretty much it. If you have got your head around it not being 'Windows', just the same as all Android tablets are not Ubuntu or any other linux desktop distro and iPads are not OS X. Everyone understands this fine and they're popular tablets, so what's the problem here? Basically the above combined with the media generally slating RT for it not being Windows.
Even compatibility with Win Phone is not an issue to the consumer, so long as they can get the apps that do what they want on the tablet version. Okay for a developer it needs a port, but even iOS needs alternate builds for iPhone and iPad, and while maybe much easier, it certainly is not the case with Android where fragmentation is vast compared to iOS and Windows devices.
Myself, I want a nice tablet for a low price I can surf and send emails, plus a few funky apps. It doesn't really matter if it's iOS, Android or RT, and certainly doesn't matter if it's not OS X, Ubuntu(etc) or full blown Windows. So long as I understand that. Price and subsidies so you can pick them up for £100 to £200. Sorted.... except for the lack of apps.
That said I do actually want something that will do spreadsheets properly in a productive way and is compatible with modern Excel formats. Turns out Office on RT pretty much does, minus macros. Though there's still a major problem that editing spreadsheets on a touch UI just isn't that useable.
"Not exactly a companion, but "The Doctor's Daughter" of the 10th Doctor, is the daughter of the 5th Doctor and Hitchhiker's Guide Trillian"
More than that, she married the 10th also.
Just better be sure the similation computer isn't connected to the phone line.
Re: Ask the poor of India what they'd prefer...
More than national pride. It would be generating various levels of business, some international trade, and moving the economy, providing employment. Okay not so much trickles down to the poor areas, but still more benefit than just dishing out £45m to the entire population.
And in perspective, £45m is only the price of 45 houses in some parts of South East England ;)
And considerably less than the more collosal waste of money HS2.
Fair play to them. At least they can stick rockets into space, unlike the UK.
"You might just squeeze one meal out of that at Indian prices, but it's only going to be a small one, and pretty bland - rice and lentils, perhaps."
and not even the funny green dip with the poppadoms
Re: I would be interested to see if their censorship guidelines can be found online
Far worse for bad grammar is Stackoverflow, though to be fair a large number of developers on there have broken English, not to mention no clue about software development. I'd suggest a typical location they come from too but I'd be accused of being racist. Well, those and students looking for the answer to an exam question, and candidates for jobs likewise for interview questions.
Re: There's science and then there's wild guesswork
The issue I have with exoplanets is the conclusions made are based on our only knowledge of planetary bodies we actually can observe, i.e. those within our own system. It's perfectly fine science to conclude because of X and Y observed and what we know about similar planets with properties X and Y therefore it must be the same, but could easily all be blown out of the water by a new discovery. After all, we don't even know what 'dark matter' is and yet it comprises a large chunk of the universe.
The other issue I have is it's all rather pointless as not one will we ever see or visit. The likelyhood is the human race will be extinct long before the time it would take to visit such places and they won't be there any more anyway.
Should have been SIP
Never was a fan of Skype. Hyped up, inefficient and proprietary, and pretty much killed SIP as a standard that a lot of hardware manufacturers were already supporting but no one used because it was all 'Skype this' and 'Skype that', and no one took the time to invest in quality SIP services.
"He claimed Pro now offers up to 10 hours battery life and the ability to multi-task, switching between Outlook, OneNote, PowerPoint and Excel."
Pro runs full Windows and Windows has had multitasking almost since day 1, and in pre-emptive form since 95/NT days.
This isn't Surface.
Re: how much?
Slash it to £299 with keyboard, £199 without, then it would be very attractive.
Re: RT is pointless, WP is the way to go
"A. It isn't Windows compatible."
Nor is Android - doesn't stop them selling bucket loads of tablets and phones.
Problem is the marketting. Selling it as *Windows* RT made people think it would run Windows apps. Daft thing is most people don't really need that on a tablet anyway. They just want to browse, read emails, play videos and games.
With the exception of Office use, and in the main it's Excel that's the killer part of Office but the traditional spreadsheet interface is useless on a touch interface. Hence why Android and iOS don't really have this cracked either. So basically you don't need proper Office either for a tablet (but MS have provided it in RT anyway). So what really do you need legacy wise on a cheap tablet? As said, Android has shown you don't need anything as plenty of Windows users are buying Android tablets. Yet won't touch RT.
Market as the Microsoft Tablet (or Microsoft Tab !), price at £150 to £200, chuck in a decent camera, optional 3G/4G... and maybe more attractive. *If* the Store was utterly revamped and developers could finally be convinced to knock up decent apps. But even then 'Microsoft' in the name may still be making people think it's Windows. Hmm... Nokia tablet... running RT... ;)
Displays in railway stations are usually powered by XP (evident when they crash)
Likewise a lot of other animated displays in shopping centres, airports, etc.
I've had ATM machines crash on me, reboot and hey... XP comes up before the ATM UI is slapped on top.
Re: upping the game to the detriment of the competition
They won't need to. They can release a curved phone that obviously is the same style, patent it and USPTO will grant it despite prior art and even if Samsung et al have their own patent. It'll go to court, fight out and even if Samsung win and get a ban on Apple, Obama will overturn it as Apple is of benefit to the US economy supposedly, plus he probably likes his iThings, then Apple will win a ban against Samsung and round we go to the next product.
Re: 106? Shurely Shome Mishtake
"Because we will never find 106. Part 7 of The Dalek Master Plan - "The Feast of Steven" (actually the original first Doctor Who "Christmas Special") - was never recorded onto film and never sold abroad"
Thank god for that!
Dalek Master Plan is better with just that whole episode represented by a "Scene Missing" card.
Though the embarising 4th wall christmas greeting from Bill to the camera would make a funny dvd easter egg.
Just need to solve with a bit of hammering the keyboard up and down to line up, rotate, rotate, rotate, rotate... there she's goes. Docked.
Just don't fire the lasers at the station!
"We heard it takes people's fingerprints. That's got to be better than us doing it ourselves."
Probably think they just need to ask Apple for them.
Sure Apple don't store them of course. The NSA can help out though if they feel like it ;)
Alternatively they've read how easy it is to hack, so they'll welcome the ability to hack a perps iPhone if they've upgraded to iOS 7.
Buying a Ferrari and just having it sat there shining while you admire it or taking it to places to show off is great, but on the other hand a Fiesta will get you to work or the shops even if it's not the best car in the world, and is more practical.
Re: I think
Surprised this hasn't been mentioned more. Legondary connection to Dolby.
The full quote -
Jeanine: You don't, you don't do heavy metal in doubly, you know, I Mean...it's
Nigel: In what??? In what???
Jeanine: In doubly...
Nigel: In dublin!?! What's that?
David: She means Dolby, alright? She means Dolby, you know? You know perfectly well what she means.
Re: The message isn't clear enough yet?
"Ballmer is leaving, things will change."
Ballmer out, Elop in. Business as usual. Both capable of destroying companies and not paying attention to user's needs.
Re: The real reason
"As easy to as it is to take potshots at Ovi it still better than Microsoft's online offering by quite some distance."
Have to admit, you're right there, and that's saying something considering how awful Ovi is/was? !
A market cap that has dropped from $40bn in the last 2 years (and was over $200bn back in 2000) and yes what does the remainder represent without Devices and Services? A division that includes all the feature phones.
Yes, MS have got a sale of the century. They have a mobile brand, access to patents and manufacturing business for next to nothing relatively. What remains (some $12bn if you like, if you're talking US$ when quoting $19bn, so $19bn - $7bn for the purchase, not 5) is perhaps the true value, or maybe inflated. I think the latter still a little, but anyway. We'll see what the market thinks of the company when it has no mobile phone business, smart or otherwise.
When you think of Nokia in the future when it comes to other than mobile phones, who are they? Little more than a mom & pop outfit dabbling in this and that with no special qualities.
Re: This news makes me sad.
"This deal allows Nokia to buy up a startup company and start producing Linux based phones again. They are free from the Microsoft shackles."
Dead end there. A novelty niche market perhaps, selling a few hundred a year to obsessed Linux fans, nothing more. Operators wouldn't touch them, so no market.
Nokia would be far better off bringing Nokian back into the fold and go back to making tyres.
Re: "and 32,0000 Nokia employees will become Redmondians."
Money or not, in a take over you don't keep employees who are literally redundant just because you feel it's morally right to keep them employed twiddling their thumbs. I can't see those 32,000 being that important to operations. All that's left of Nokia now anyway is hardware manufacture and that can be outsourced to China.
Re: Once more with feeling...
I just downvote people who moan about being downvoted. Much like users of Facebook, if you are STUPID enough to post a comment on El Reg, be prepared to be downvoted.
As I read somewhere else, the key with the 2DS is it's simpler and cheaper to produce which makes is potentially more profitable. It's never going to be a huge seller though would appeal to budget concious parents or even kids who've saved a lot of pocket money (or probably not that much these days). Or anyone who just wants a gadget to play fun little games on the move but doesn't want to drain their smartphone flat by playing 15 minutes of one game.
Re: 24 fps ... bah
High frame rates just makes it like watching an episode of Eastenders on TV. Loses the cinematic feel.
Same problem with the artifical motion processing in modern TVs, and worse they tend to make some things far too smooth that it becomes unnatural.
However there is a point about 24fps on HD TVs, if they're set to 24p. There's an argument that many TVs will enhance the flicker and judder effects that cinemas tend to reduce with a double shutter. Though I'm not sold on that argument. However I have noticed that despite 24p supposedly eliminating 3:2 pulldown issues you always got with NTSC video (60Hz/30fps), it still judders but in a different way. You can just turn on the motion processing on your fancy telly though, or set the player to output 50/60p instead (as many modern TVs will sort out the pulldown issues anyway).
JJ already has the lens flare filter.
Re: 32K- the BBC Micro's most annoying limitation
"And then the BBC Master 128 had 64K RAM, 64K sideways RAM? And while you could store programs in sideways RAM, you couldn't run it from there?"
Basically a paging mechanism as I understood it. You could get sideways ram for the plain model B also. Sat in one of the ROM chips and like those it you would page it in and out of the 64K addressable memory. So one of the ROMs would have to take a back seat while you use the ram.
One thing I never got my head round though was I swore the 32K Beeb had 64K worth of actual dram chips. I remember believing they were 4K each or something and counting them up and that makes 64. I assumed it was same as the C64 then where the 32K of ROM was copied into RAM... but seems not?
Scheduled sure... by NSA
There's a film in that
Quick, bang out a film based on it, pad it out to 3 hours, in 3D.
Still would be more interesting than just recycling every film made in the last 10 years due to lack of imagination. Though they'd then have another film to remake in a couple of years.
Re: Encryption needs to be on the client side to be secure
Just encrypt on the client and don't process on the server then. Though you'd then need your key in the cloud to decrypt to actually make it useful off device for other cloudy services.
Encryption on cloud storage is not really much interest to me. The chances of someone nicking one of their discs and leaking the data, or some member of staff copying it off, is slim or at least prosecutable.
My concern is far more about the device when syncing my private data to the cloud.
Re: Was B7 a Fluke?...
Gareth Thomas was right to leave as the show early on lost its roots and descended into standard sci-fi fighting aliens insetad of fighting the federation. Though I still loved it despite the flaws.
I've always hoped a remake would go back to the core principles, and it should remain bleak with conflict between central characters, and possible bleak ending. So that rules out any US involvement, which means no money (given the BBC couldn't give a rats about it, not that they can afford it either), whcih means it will never be made.
I was dubious about the remake announced last year and now if it's come to this there's no hope for it. Sounds worse than a straight to video.
Re: "MICROSOFT TO FUND BLAKE'S 7 RETURN AS XBOX LIVE EXCLUSIVE!"
I'd see Microsoft as a member of the Federation with Apple as the core ('core' - geddit?) with Steve Jobs, were he still about, as Servalan / the guy from the patent office.
Google are the loose group of freedom fighters. Or maybe that's Samsung, flying around the galaxy stealing ideas for their next phone, and Avon is their lawyer.
Re: No such thing as bad publicity?
I thought they died when they stopped filling my bin with CDs
Re: Yeah.. right..
I used Thunderbird for years as a substitute for Outlook when I was too cheap to have Office at home (and you need the premium versions to get Outlook usually these days anyway).
I liked Thunderbird but it was never quite all what Outlook was. And it didn't even have a calendar out of the box! You had to use a plug in, and even then it didn't integrate well. Thunderbird always needed some fiddling to get it working the way you wanted or worked I found.
Contacts, calendars, scheduling meetings and general office type features that go beyond just email is where Outlook excels, and in the latest versions it's pretty good now, hooking up with Lync in office environments, and Hotmail/Facebook/Linkedin and a whole load of others generally.
I get the whole Office suite now as part of a subscription I use for my contracting work, and wasn't going to bother with Outlook, but tried it and it does everything I want with ease and can't say I miss Thunderbird or feel it would be better.
That said, a cut down Outlook for RT is fairly pointless.
Who's the market?
Home users - Outlook is no killer app for them.
Business users - Outlook is only an option if it's the full Outlook.
And are they adding back in domain support? If not then what's the point of Outlook for business use if it won't hook up with an AD domain? And on a tablet you want Lync support too especially for meetings.
Re: The killer feature would be x86 emulation
"So the porting process is just a case of switching the compile option from x86 to ARM"
Lol! I really wish it was that simple. I really do.
The only things that will in theory be easy are those in byte compiled languages such as Java and .NET, but on the RT the underlying framework is just not there. .NET is only a small subset implemented and Java is non existent.
Runtime environments for C/C++ etc - again just not there. Microsoft didn't implement full Windows on RT. They implemented a subset of it, or rather an approximation of something looking like Windows that just runs Windows Store Apps, and nothing more.
No point in high level languages if the low level is not there.
And at the lower levels - the APIs are still not there, and then you're getting into major architecture differences even between ARM and x86.
Never used the 'feature'
First time the option was added to a browser to save passwords, might have even been IE, I disabled it. No way I'm trusting a browser to passwords for every site I visit.
It forces you to actually remember the passwords also. More so if you disable the cookies on those sites too, though it's become more inpractical the more sites depend on cookies and the wealth of sites that use centralised authorisation through Google, FB, etc. Though at least if you're going for one password to store all your other passwords like in Firefox, then better to have a cookied auth via your Google account to authorise that site as your Google password isn't stored, only that your session is authenticated and that expires from time to time and have to log into Google again, or you can log it out yourself / revoke access to one or all sites.
It's not about safety, it's about annoyance
The systems aren't going to crash with mobile signals about, but the comms systems can get interference. Probably not so that the crew cannot hear anything, but enough to make them pissed off.
They do know about phones switched on. I've been on a few flights where they have announced that they are not moving until whoever it is switches off their phone. On one they even somehow tied it down to a section of the cabin where they knew it was and started opening the overhead bins to turn the thing off. I've no idea how they managed to pinpoint the location though.
Internal US flights yes often have wifi. Though it's on a different band and I wonder if they shield the cabin so signals aren't going to get onto the deck. Seems a bit advanced, but maybe possible.
The main reason I see for sticking your phone on flight or turning it off personally is it's pointless having it sat in high power mode struggling to find a signal and draining the battery. Then again if everyone else did that at least they'd have a dead phone on landing and I wouldn't have to listen to hundreds of phones receiving "welcome to the country" text messages and them phoning their friends/family/taxi-driver. It's not going to make a difference if you call them 1ms after landing given you'll be sat in bag reclaim for the next hour (or if Heathrow, more than that including time to fill in the lost luggage forms).
It would probably be better to concentrate on some form of rapid cloning. You just need a simple DNA copy then and a machine that can grow a copy in minutes at the destination, and then transfer the memory into the copy.
Re: Trekker alert!!
There was a short story or something based on this. Magic boxes people stepped into and were transported to the destination, until it was revealed the boxes made copies and the original person was killed.
"The art of flying is to launch yourself at the ground and miss."
Funny enough, that was how planetary orbit was explained to me by my science teacher. Well, to launch forward with enough speed that you always miss the ground.
Re: Sony... Oh well.
"Sony have developed a lot of good formats."
MiniDisc... oh wait.
SACD... oh wait.
Proprietary Memory Stick, that's a great idea too ;)
Re: First news story for the Playstation 5?
"HD-DVD was slower, had less capacity"
Transfer speed made crap all difference for video use. It plays movies at the correct speed. Job done.
My HD DVDs also all load *way* faster than it takes my Blu Ray player to chug away loading a pile of Java code for the menus. Just let me skip the thing and play the movie. Can't I just uninstall Java from it? ;)
Capacity was a non issue. Never had an HD DVD movie that was split over two discs. Extras might be on another where they could cram them on one Blu Ray, but so what. I'm bored with extras these days anyway (though I'm bored with movies too. Barely buy any on optical formats now).
Someone mentioned not as tough. The other way round. Blu Ray was vulnerable because the data layer was closer to the surface. They had to implement a fix putting a protective hard coating layer on it. HD DVD was just the same as any DVD and while no protective layer, it was more tolerant due to bigger laser wavelength / bigger pits on the surface (hence the smaller capacity). In fact my one only 'HD' format disc that is non playable is on Blu Ray. There's a very tiny scratch there almost impossible to see. I've got big scratches on HD DVDs like on old DVDs and they play fine.
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