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* Posts by Peter Simpson 1

762 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Intel's new TV box to point creepy spy camera at YOUR FACE

Peter Simpson 1
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Happy

Tape

Nothing that can't be fixed with a piece of black electrical tape.

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Dish boss on ad-skipping service: 'I don’t want to kill ads'

Peter Simpson 1
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Paris Hilton

Ads

As has been said many times before: if they were interesting (e.g.: Super Bowl), people wouldn't skip 'em.

One can only hope that the proliferation of ad-blockers and commercial skipping will result in an increase in the quality of ads.

//one can hope...

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Ethernet at 40: Its daddy reveals its turbulent youth

Peter Simpson 1
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Happy

Re: Killing token-ring.

IMHO, the thing that killed Token Ring was the cost of the license for the MAC code and the fact that it couldn't run on CAT5. Whereas Ethernet was truly asynchronous and had standardised signalling waveforms carefully designed to work on unshielded TP, Token Ring never quite got to that point (as the clock jitter requirement precluded bandwith limited waveforms on the wire).

I spent much time at 3Com, trying to get 16 meg Token Ring switches to work reliably at maximum cable lengths (and then to get them to pass FCC emissions testing). IMHO, it was never to be. Meanwhile, Ethernet over twisted pair was heading for 100 megabit/sec. Game over.

//I did manage to implement a parser for the source routing field in a CPLD, so there was that, at least...

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Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Ring was too expensive

IIRC, the Token Ring cost included a license...for the MAC code, whereas Ethernet MAC code was so simple it didn't need a license. TR MACs needed all kinds of code to manage token forwarding, master election and such. Ethernet "just worked", although it worked a lot better when we got away from coax and onto twisted pair...

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Tennessee bloke quits job over satanic wage slip

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Pint

Re: How to improve the world.

My personal opinion of the Book of Revelations is that it supports the hypothesis that recreational chemicals were in common use in those times...

//beer, because no LSD icon

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Peter Simpson 1
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Devil

Re: helldesk

I can top that. In uni, my phone number (Centrex exchange, 5 digit numbers) was 6-6666. By the end of the first semester, we had removed the bells due to the large number of drunk-dialled night-time calls.

And anyway, Revelation says the Mark is supposed to be on the forehead or right arm, IIRC. So a literal interpretation (isn't that what these chaps are demanding?) would mean that phone numbers, W-2 forms, employee and student ID badges should be quite acceptable.

//what else?

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Microsoft to open 11 new retail stores by summer

Peter Simpson 1
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FAIL

Re: This smacks of desperation

Agreed. Microsoft, at this point, are primarily a business software supplier, who dabble in consumer hardware. Their consumer OS "business" is only due to contracts they have to supply the default OS on hardware sold by others. People buy Microsoft software because they have to, not because they want to.

They will never have the "wow" factor of Apple, because the Microsoft brand carries too much baggage. Sure, people will buy Surface, but when they find out it's inferior to the iPad (which has a 3 year head start), their friends will go back to buying Apple and Surface will go the way of Kin and Zune.

I feel rather sorry for Microsoft, because they just don't "get it"...instead of following the crowd, they should try delivering what should, by now, be the logical fruit of their years of experience: a fast, cheap, reliable OS that rejects malware like an umbrella sheds rain. But I fear internal politics and Ballmer's non technical leadership has doomed them...

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Netflix tempts binge viewers with House of Cards pilot freebie

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: nice idea but..

Silverlight?

I thought it was dead...

http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/silverlightarchieve/thread/991d2208-7384-497c-8719-98baac290ccc/

//ned tombstone icon

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LOHAN teases with quick flash of spaceplane

Peter Simpson 1
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"Rest assured, the thing will fly"

Carved on a granite marker at the launch site, it will be.

//Orville and Wilbur nod and smile, knowingly

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'Gaia' Lovelock: Wind turbines 'may become like Easter Island statues'

Peter Simpson 1
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Mushroom

Nuclear energy's the perfect power source

Until:

- the operators screw up

- the hardware fails

- you have to get rid of the leftovers

Then, it's not so green. For tens of thousands of years.

//but that's someone else's problem, right?

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Is your Surface Pro a bit full? Slot in an SD card, it's not from Apple

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Tablet computer has slot for SD card

It's not just the iPad -- my Google Nexus 7 also lacks an SD slot. Happily, you can buy a cheap adapter cable which allows an SD card to be attached temporarily to the USB port.

//how else would they be able to get more money for the 32G version?

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Lotus 1-2-3 rebooted: My trip back to the old (named) range

Peter Simpson 1
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Coat

Thanks for the retro screen shots

Now, let's see some VisiCalc!

//if I'd only had spreadsheets during my uni years...

//thanks, it's the one with the slide rule in the pocket

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Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Copy protection ? Really ?

Copy II PC it was!

Ahhh...fond memories

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LOHAN premieres intimate REHAB vid

Peter Simpson 1
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Black Helicopters

Might I suggest

A bouyant housing this time? And a waterproof "If found, please return to" label?

You know, just in case the SPB recovery armada doesn't happen to be right under the vehicle when it comes down?

//recovery helicopter

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'We are not concerned about your patents at all' - Jobs

Peter Simpson 1
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The awesomely named Rick Champagne

I wonder if he has a cousin named "Max Power"?

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Security audit finds dev OUTSOURCED his JOB to China to goof off at work

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: "bob" sure it wasn't "BOFH"? Oh wait, he wouldn't have been caught...

...because the investigators would be buried in the local tip, rolled up in old carpeting.

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Peter Simpson 1
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Re: brilliant

His scheme has a BOFH quality to it

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Zuck on that! Instagram loses HALF its hipsters in a month

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Hmmm

"Somebody should be able to make that stick."

Some highly paid lawyer, probably. The amount of money *you* would see would be insignificant and probably not worth all the pain.

Contrast that with the ability of large media corps to field teams of legal wranglers and you see the problem.

Their copyrighted works are valuable and will be defended from infringement at all costs -- yours?

Not so much..

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Peter Simpson 1
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Pirate

Re: How many of those orphan works will actually be of value?

"Your family photo holidays might end up decorating some travel companies leaflet but, being honest, you weren't going to get any money for them anyway."

Well, I *might* have been able to get some money for them if I'd been asked...and perhaps the advertiser would have paid me.

These are the same media companies who are whining that non-commercial file sharing on bittorrent deprives them of revenue, correct?

I dunno, seems like they're proposing one set of rules for them and another set for the "consumers".

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First rigid airship since the Hindenburg enters trials

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: How can this be viable

"You could paint it to look like a cloud..."

Henceforth to be known as "Winnie-ther-Pooh" camouflage.

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Facebook fixes 'Peeping Tom' webcam bug - AFTER 5 MONTHS

Peter Simpson 1
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Happy

Hoist

with their own petard, the Zuckerbergs are...

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Microsoft releases first Windows OS in an original American language

Peter Simpson 1
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Merkey?

There was a guy named Merkey, a real "character", who claimed to be doing a Cherokee operating system (during the SCO we-own-Linux circus). I wonder if he's found greener pastures?

Seems like the market for a Cherokee-language OS would be rather small, but then again, what do I know about it?

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Vatican shrugs off apocalypse, fiddles with accounts dept

Peter Simpson 1
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Unhappy

Re: So why isn't the Mayan civilisation still around?

The Catholic church, or its agents, are to blame for that.

All that genocide was done in God's name...

(as it almost always is)

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Google maps app is BACK on iPhones, fanbois spared death

Peter Simpson 1
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Alert

Re: I almost died in Australia

Australia doesn't have a lock on bad mapping data -- took me years to convince Google, TeleAtlas and Navtech to stop sending people to our house via the mudpit that masquerades as the middle portion of our road. You can only travel it end-to-end if you have an off-road vehicle!

Now that I have the data correct in the three major data suppliers' databases, I just have to wait until it gets rolled out to the in-vehicle systems.

//tired of getting calls from delivery folks unable to find my house

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Linux kernel dumps 386 chip support

Peter Simpson 1
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Childcatcher

Re: Z-80

Nowhere near as wonderful as the 68K!

//no antique computing icon???

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North Korean rocket works, puts something into orbit

Peter Simpson 1
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Black Helicopters

Re: Whatever it is up there, it's a lump...

No, it's a spy satellite.

A cabbage with a DSLR (with wi-fi card) duct-taped to it. Polar orbit so it can take pictures of the US.

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Microsoft licence cops kick in TWICE as many customers' doors as rivals

Peter Simpson 1
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Happy

Re: Licence server

My company's IT folks do just that -- they have an inventory tool that enumerates the software installed on each PC, so they know (plus or minus one or two) which PCs have what software on them. They seem to have a pretty good handle on the Microsoft products they have (and a good relationship with Microsoft regarding the licenses, from what I hear)

Maybe Microsoft sees that we have hard data to back up our claims and seeks greener, less well documented, pastures in which to graze?

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Girl gang targets Microsoft's Seattle stores for $5,000 theft spree

Peter Simpson 1
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WTF?

Re: Ballmer Babes

Security's too good at the Apple stores?

Sometimes ya gotta settle for second best.

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Google honors computing's first developer Ada Lovelace

Peter Simpson 1
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Facepalm

The original

Big Iron?

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Patrick Moore: Lived with cats, accompanied Einstein on the piano

Peter Simpson 1
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Pint

Re: He was a bit

That's what makes him interesting. Odd and intelligent is a great combination.

RIP

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Mother of All Whistlers: Virgin Media superhub. Listen to recordings

Peter Simpson 1
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Pirate

Many wall warts wouldn't pass EU tests if you tested them.

But they have CE marks on them!

Oh, sorry...that would be the confusingly similar (read: identical except for microscopic differences invisible to the untrained eye) "China Export" mark.

(indicating that the article in question was exported from China?)

I tend to view any and all certification marks on Chinese manufactured products with the greatest of skepticism.

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Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Switched-mode power supplies are often like this

That whining you hear, is actually a built in indication that your efforts to reduce power supply cost have gone past the point where they affect the proper functioning of the unit. It's time to put just a wee bit more money into the parts and buy some inductors that are more tightly wound on cores that are bonded together with something more robust than hot glue.

Quality Chinese Engineering at its finest, I would suspect.

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Australian Police say don't use Apple's iOS 6 Maps

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Stupid people always want something to blame

Whose database is Apple using? I hope they got it cheap. I had heard they were planing to use Open Street Map (OSM), but perhaps not?

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Peter Simpson 1
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FAIL

Re: Stupid people always want something to blame

Same thing happened on my road. Though the town gets partial for not using an official "DEAD END" sign.

How stupid do you have to be to keep going when there's brush scraping both sides of your vehicle?

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Microsoft's anti-Android Twitter campaign draws ire, irony

Peter Simpson 1
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FAIL

Re: Hackers would go after Windows phones...

Windows, Linux, Macs, Android -- they *can* all get malware. What differentiates them is:

- market share -- is writing the malware worth the effort?

- defenses -- what tools are available to block/combat the malware?

Microsoft (the market leader) have anti-malware software available but choose not to include it or enable it by default in their OS. If you're committed to fighting malware, why would you not ship your product with anti-malware tools installed and enabled by default?

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The best e-readers for Christmas

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Thumbs up for Nexus 7

I've asked for one for Christmas. The rest of the family has iPads.

//independent streak

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Slash A THIRD off Surface RT price or it's toast, Microsoft told

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Low end?

"The cheapo tablets are generally compromised in some way..."

Usually, in my experience, that way is basic function -- as in "they don't work". But what did you expect from Chinese white box tablets for under $100?

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McAfee seeks asylum in Guatemala

Peter Simpson 1
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WTF?

Remind me again...

...why I'm supposed to care about this tw@t and his problems?

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Forget fluorescents, plastic lighting strips coming out next year

Peter Simpson 1
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Trollface

Re: Sanitary Engineering

A well designed toilet is a work of art.

Some day, the British will have the opportunity to see one.

//seriously -- British toilets could use a redesign

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Peter Simpson 1
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Stop

CF aren't that bad

When I had my house built, 20+ years ago, I opted for recessed, dual 13W CF fixtures in the kitchen and hallways. Over the strenuous objections of my wife, who claimed they were cold, harsh and flickered. I installed 2700K bulbs, which to my (color blind) eyes looked indistinguishable from incandescent. She admitted they did to her as well. And the only time they flicker is when they are failing.

Granted, we did get a batch of Philips "green" (low mercury I assume) bulbs, which on average, lasted less than a year, but other than that we get many (10+ in some cases) years from them. The best part is the power use, 1/4 that of incandescent, and the rebate I got from the power company which pretty near paid for the whole install.

Yes, I'd do it again. Fluorescent, because of the mercury and lack of aggressive recycling, is not my first choice, but I can certainly live with the quality of the light. I look forward to testing the "plastic lights"

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His Holiness Benedict XVI to tweet to his Catholic flock

Peter Simpson 1
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Angel

romanes eunt domum

kthxby

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Hero Playmonaut lost at sea as SPEARS ditches in Channel

Peter Simpson 1
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Pint

Re: Another idea

Shame you couldn't get some kind of Royal Charter or something...I hear one of Them is an SAR pilot. If you'd made the extra effort to get him interested in the project, maybe...oh, wait -- he's got something else on his mind right now, doesn't he?

Well, it was a good idea. Better luck next time, guys!

(and thanks for the stroy, tracking, photos, videos, etc, so we could follow along)

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Ready for ANOTHER patent war? Apple 'invents' wireless charging

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Total bollocks, all right

"The innovative bit about the patent is the re-radiating of power from one device to another"

Let me get this straight: "re-radiating" is somehow better than just letting the end device pick up the power on its own? Recovery of radiated power by the re-radiator is necessarily inefficient, as is the process of "re-radiation" (whatever that may be). I guess it'll work as long as the battery in the "re-radiator" holds out.

Up to a meter, huh? I'll believe it when I see it work without something melting or the disc on my electric meter spinning faster than light.

//it's the one with "Secrets of Free Power" in the pocket, thanks

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Watch live! Crack LOHAN team to send SPEARS to stratosphere

Peter Simpson 1
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Best of luck!

Let's hope LOHAN doesn't get "busted", like its namesake:

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/lindsay-lohan-fight-manhattan-nightclub-article-1.1209996

Clear skies and smooth landings!

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The Lord of the Rings saga lies hidden deep in your Mac

Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Not just OS X

...and on Ubuntu 12.10 here as well

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Data cop slap for Brit text pests

Peter Simpson 1
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Happy

Re: Or on Three network

Hmm - interesting. It's the exact same process on the AT&T network here in the US. I wonder if they're all using the same 7726 software? Typing in the sending number is a pain, but I try to remember I'm helping to build a database to shut down these b@stards.

Maybe there is hope after all. It seems to be working here, I haven't gotten SMS spam for a while now. It does seem to come in bursts for several months, then dies out. I'm currently getting robocalls offering me [lower interest rates, free alarm systems, or dead air!)

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Peter Simpson 1
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Holmes

Re: 7726?

Assuming that the carriers actually care (or are encouraged to care by the regulators), the first step in shutting down SMS spam would be to gather statistics.

The carriers can't seem to stop the spam at the source, but 7726 allows them to automate the process of identifying the sending number and enables them to block it almost immediately (simple script -- if you get 10 complaints on the same number to 7726 inside of 10 minutes, block the number).

It may not end the problem, but at least it makes life a bit more difficult for the spammers (they need to buy more SIMs, as they're being blocked more quickly) and collects evidence (we have all these compaints of spam from this number, and here we have a SIM registered to that number, perhaps you'd like to explain?)

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Ten technology FAILS

Peter Simpson 1
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Facepalm

Re: The Newton was not a technology failure

I beg to disagree. Jimbo seems quite displeased with the performance of its handwriting recognition:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxZJsGuUfew

//one of my favorite Simpsons moments

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Peter Simpson 1
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Re: Palm Pilot never tried to be anything more than a digital diary and contacts list.

I had a satellite tracker on mine :-)

//worked a treat!

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Google parks panzers on Germany's lawn over 'link tax' plan

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Re: clarification for foreigners and the young

I believe the Honorable Gentleman was attempting to cram a large number of currency notes into his suitcoat at the time he made that statement.

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