* Posts by jason 7

2171 posts • joined 11 Jun 2009

Future imperfect: A UK broadband retrospective

jason 7
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Re: Good article

I remember back around the turn of the century when ADSL was on the horizon as the next big thing BT was stating in every tech site at the time that ISDN was pretty much all people would need and that they had little interest in pushing ADSL. Well what a surprise.

We had a 'forgotten' 128Kb ISDN link in our office for several years. We used to use it for streaming US radio into the office and a ghetto video conference setup we made (hey...perks were few and far between by then). No one ever asked about it. Probably still there long after we moved on 12+ years ago.

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jason 7
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Re: About time councils put their foot down

To be honest I wouldn't move to a property with less than 6Mbps.

Would cramp my style too much.

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jason 7
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Hmmm the Alcatel 'Snotblob'.

I remember thee. A great device for sorting out the men from the boys USB socket wise.

Basically if you had a VIA USB chipset you were screwed as it didn't push enough power to the snotblob. Spent many a lunch hour down Maplins hunting out NEC USB chipset PCI cards for friends.

When I had my ADSL installed in 2001 it was still a two engineer job. You had to have a ADSL box installed in the house. Was rather nice to have a proper purpose built box installed just where you wanted it in the living room. Much better than all the poor sods that had to put up with the splitter plugs in the hallway much later.

Still use the ADSL box today. However, the speed has improved. Back in 2001 it was a staggering 512Kb. Now it's a better 18Mbps and while I can get FTTC, I really can't be bothered. I'll wait till they move me over for nothing due to legacy needs.

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HD and SSD Prices not declining - why ?

jason 7
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Checking my Amazon order list...

...would refute your claim for the UK at least.

240GB V300 Kingston SSD October 2013 - £104.00

240GB V300 Kingston SSD January 2015 - £73.00

A price drop of £31.00 or a drop of nearly 30% in just over a year. In the past six months alone I've been picking up 240GB SSDs for under £70 and even got one for £65! Even got 64GB SSDs for under £30.

The only tech pricing anomaly I've ever noticed is the price of DAB radios. How this clunky ancient tech isn't being sold for next to nothing mystifies me.

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Acer Chromebook 13: The best Googletop on the market?

jason 7
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Re: Damn it, just the one USB port

Still better than those 1024x600 netbooks though!

1366x768 works okay on a 11" screen just not on anything 13" and above.

Just a shame 1600x900 (or even 1680x1050 for the depth fans) has all but disappeared. Always though that would have made a better intermediate/standard screen res for standard 13"+ laptops.

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jason 7
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Micro USB power/charging socket.

Shame more of these don't come with such a socket for slow charging on a phone charger. Means you only have to take one charging plug.

Didn't HP do this with one of theirs?

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Are you running a Telnet server on Windows? Oh thank God. THANK GOD

jason 7
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Adobe Air....

...anyone?

Haven't installed this for years and the world still keep turning. Am I missing anything?

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Windows 7 MARKED for DEATH by Microsoft as of NOW

jason 7
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Re: Bye Bye MS

Indeed, try keeping a Mac up to date for 10 years.

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jason 7
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Alternate releases

I've been thinking that if MS wants to push out an OS every 2 years or so then they should go to a alternate Domestic and Business release. That way you would get around 5 years between business releases (and domestic).

Also it would mean you wouldn't have to have too many unwanted features in either release.

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jason 7
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Re: This is ridiculous

6-7 years is fairly normal. In a big corporation, you usually wait a year for a new OS to 'mature'. Then you spend a year configuring your builds. Then three years rolling the 20000+ items of kit etc. out.

Then another year doing mop ups. Then two years trying to get it all working.

Then you wait a year for the new OS to 'mature'...

Quite why MS has decided to go to a new OS every 2+ years cycle when their biggest customers move on a much longer time frame, I don't know.

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An e-reader you HAVEN'T heard of: Cybook Ocean 8"

jason 7
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Erm...

...I'll stick with my Kindle Paperwhite thanks.

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Saudi Arabia to flog man 1,000 times for insulting religion on Facebook

jason 7
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Allah, Most gracious, most merciful!

But where is the mercy?

You'll never get a straight answer to that one.

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20 years on: The satirist's satirist Peter Cook remembered

jason 7
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And remember, the considerate lover always spits up the c....

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jason 7
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One of the most memorable things I remember from TV in the 80's was watching the night Joan Rivers had Bernard Manning on that chat show with Cook as her weekly 'stooge' sitting on the end of the sofa.

Manning walks on, sits down, turns grinning to a grimacing Cook and says "What's the matter Peter? You're not being very funny tonight!"

Cook....crushed. I think it's in YouTube.

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jason 7
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My girlfriend and I have taken one as one of our most used phrases.

"And I said...with all the dignity I could muster...is this any way to run a f****ing (insert whatever here)?!

However, Cook was quite the visionary. How long before we actually have a reality TV show called 'Celebrity Suicides'?

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jason 7
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Oh god yes....

...the Derek & Clive video is a once only watch. Like a car crash in painful slow motion.

Like watching a marriage break up. If you see it though, you can imagine that Cook could be a bully. He goads Moore throughout the session in a less than friendly manner. Sadness? Frustration at Moore soon to be departing across the pond leaving him behind? We'll never know.

Also it blows a few myths too. Moore turns up to the session with nothing more than a bag of fruit. Whereas Cook has a pile of notes/material ready to go. So not surprising Moore can only react and ad-lib to what Cook says on that occasion. Not as spontaneous/off the cuff as many have alluded to.

Don't know if that was the case for all the D&C sessions, possibly not.

Cook was still a genius and I was mortified this day 20 years ago. I can't remember who said it (possibly Fry actually) to crush criticism that Cook had wasted the last 20 years of his life but they said (iirc) "He didn't waste the last years of his life, he had just done everything he set out to do, far earlier than planned!"

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Eight pocket-pleasing USB 3.0 hard drives

jason 7
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Re: Not enough power!

When the big HDD flood happened a couple of years+ ago I was buying Seagate NAS boxes with 2 x 1TB HDDs in them far cheaper than the bare drives would have cost me.

Bit crafty but hey...

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Elite: Dangerous 'billionaire' gamers are being 'antisocial', moan players

jason 7
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Re: Aarrr!

Oh the adrenalin rush of Eve. I remember my 4 man corp being war-decced over our POS. We managed to get the POS down and take out two of their battleships with no losses on our side. None of us got any sleep that night, just shaking too much. We'd never fought a war before either.

Great times.

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Healthcare: Look anywhere you like for answers, just not the US

jason 7
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Re: I don't get the mentality of the US healthcare consumers.

may I just point out that $7000 figure was for the year 2002.

I would assume its now considerably more.

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jason 7
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I don't get the mentality of the US healthcare consumers.

I was staying in Oregon a few years ago and some of the locals were asking me about life in the UK.

"You have the NHS over there? What's that all about?"

I just explained that through a manageable level of taxation I was eligible for free healthcare, so if I had to have open heart surgery it would all be done free of charge etc. etc.

"Wow!" they said. "We have to pay over $7000 a year for the pair of us!"

You think if it's that expensive then why are so many Americans against paying for something like the NHS through taxation? Surely it would have been far less than $7000 a year out of their pocket?

Just sounds a bit of a mess.

Plus I've never considered such things as the NHS as socialist or communist (daft). I just think it's a basic requirement for a country to consider itself civilised in this day and age.

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jason 7
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Re: Thoughts

The big problem for the NHS is mainly inefficiency on the clerical side.

People can't make booking for when it's best for them. They advise the clerical person they will be on holiday for the first week of June and two weeks later when they get their appointment letter through it says...yes, it's the first week of June. Go back to Start.

The GP will say "You need to see biomechanics!" The person will try to book with biomechanics but will be pushed to chiropody due to the biomechanics list being too long (they only have one specialist). Person goes to see the chiropodist to be told they should see biomechanics and have to start the booking process again. Finally goes to see biomechanic and they don't have enough time to do the job properly so it just gets worse and more expensive over time. Person resorts to going private instead.

Many cases where treatment A is the best course of action but the patient for some reason has to go through treatments B, C and D due to the clerical dept's insistence/ineptitude before finally having to go back to treatment A.

In most cases the treatment is okay, it's the total clusterf**k of actually getting to that point that's the problem. Most non-medical people in the NHS just aren't smart enough for what's required.

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jason 7
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Re: France

Sounds a better way to do it to be honest.

I know several people here in the UK that were issued new crutches, braces etc. that were marvels of stainless steel and engineering and must cost quite a lot of money.

None of this stuff was internal, just external use kit.

When they were finished using them they asked about returning them.

"Oh we don't them back!" was the hospital's reply.

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Seagate makes CES splash with $99 drive, 'personal' cloud offerings

jason 7
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Please...

...don't let them have custom SATA connectors inside the case!

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Renault Captur: Nobody who knows about cars will buy this

jason 7
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You get the cars the conditions demand.

Is driving all that exciting/fun anymore?

Petrol costs (excluding OPEC's current strangle hold on the US oil), speed bumps, restricted limits, speed vans, mums in 4x4's blocking the roads at school time, lorries everywhere, morons driving and texting etc. etc.

Most just want something that looks nice, will get from A to B, is comfy, hassle free servicing/warranty and has a few gadgets.

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Google unveils Windows 8.1 zero-day vuln – complete with exploit code

jason 7
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Indeed, with ChromeOS on the rise...

...it's only going to get nastier.

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Brit iPad sellers feel the pain of VAT-free imports

jason 7
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This is another one of those situations...

...where the world is just too small a place for regulations and practices that worked fine when it was 'much larger'.

Like "this content is not available in your country!" Okay I'll look it up in HD on YouTube!

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UK retailers in TABLET PRICE SLASH BONANZA

jason 7
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Yeah I got the 64GB real cheap too a couple of years ago. I don't use it for web etc. now but its still an awesome music and video player and while the screen res isn't much the colour quality etc. is superb. As others mentioned the HDMI out boosts its media use.

A tablet from the time before they started cutting corners. Good for keeping in the car with some Disney/Pixer movies on for the kids.

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Kim Dotcom vows to KILL SKYPE with encrypted MegaChat

jason 7
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Re: I thought this guy went bust?

Slow news day!

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jason 7
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Re: Good

Too right re. the interface. I haven't used Skype in years but had to set it up for a customer yesterday.

It's a bloomin mess! I don't remember it being that awful say 5 years ago.

Not very intuitive, stuff all over the place.

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Reg man confesses: I took my wife out to choose a laptop for Xmas. NOOOO

jason 7
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Bit two dimensional on the colour issue.

Do as I have done before with laptops for ladies.

Buy the right plain laptop for the job.

Go to Decal Girl and get the snazzy vinyl covers for it.

Score major brownie points.

Job done.

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Ghosts of Christmas Past: The long-ago geek gifts that made us what we are

jason 7
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Re: Obligatory Rant...

I was talking about Lego at dinner today. I pointed out that Lego has far too many custom parts nowadays so kids don't have to try.

When I was a kid in the 70's Lego would get you 75% of the way, then another 10 with bodging and the other 15% you had to fill in with imagination.

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GCHQ: We can't track crims any more thanks to Snowden

jason 7
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Re: Suggestion for law enforcement

I live in a city centre so get a lot of anti-social thuggery going on.

I once said the to the Police Inspector in charge of the city centre night time crime division at a public forum that I thought it would be a good idea to have a couple of officers on a Friday/Saturday night do a tour of the roads and residential back streets from the main nightclubs areas like security guards do.

Basically just making sure folks knew there was a Police presence keeping an eye on the darker streets and lanes in the residential areas in an effort to reduce the anti-social goings on. Drunks get up to all sorts when they see a dark alley or lane off the main street.

She looked puzzled and stated "I do not want officers patrolling in areas where there is nothing going on!"

I replied "With all due respect but as a resident living in this difficult area, 'nothing going on' is exactly what I want!"

She had no clue about preventative policing. All she understood was clocking up figures to slap on monthly performance reports. Creating a safe, crime free area just did not compute with her.

What are they teaching at Hendon these days?

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Hipsters ahoy! Top Ten BOARD games for festive family fun

jason 7
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We used to play their Dark Future Mad Max type game a lot about 20+ years ago. Was fun to mod up your own old Matchbox cars to include the weapons you added to the stock included cars.

http://oldschoolworkshop.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/playing-dark-future-introduction.html

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Microsoft shutters Office 365's free web site service

jason 7
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Re: Taking away?

The sensible thing to have done would be to come clean and say "As only 357 websites have been created through this service than the planned 3,570,000 we created the infrastructure for, we felt it wasn't worth continuing!"

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Apple's DIRTY SECRET isn't that secret, or that dirty

jason 7
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Re: I did watch Panorama

Quite right. All this 'monitoring' of communications for terrorism is all cobblers. It's the 1% being able to find/remove the future 'trouble makers' and dissenters that will stir up the masses to take back what's really theirs.

The 1% are terrified of a similar situation that happened in the old Soviet Union in the early 90's happening elsewhere. Mainly in the west.

You'll see in a few years we'll have laws that outlaw making fun of politicians and other such figures. Then soon after having differing political views will be classed as illegal or extremist.

If folks are willing to get upset and vote over smoke screen stuff like immigration that actually have zero effect on their lives, they'll vote for whatever they are told.

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jason 7
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If Apple really really cared about workers conditions...

...then wouldn't they have their own western inspectors visiting or monitoring working and factory conditions as part of their 'caring' attitude? Making sure the contractors and workers are not being abused or exposed to risk.

Well it's what I would do if I really cared. After all I sure Apple could afford a team of people to do that.

However, it appears they do not, so really it all boils down to bulls*it PR stunts.

As mentioned by the previous poster, sure other companies use these same factories but they are not the ones going on record over and over again every time this comes up saying "oh we really really care!"

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Alfa Romeo Giulietta Quadrifoglio Verde: Fun, but not for all

jason 7
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Cover over the badge...

...I'd think it a Mazda to be honest.

Does look fun however.

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Disk areal density: Not a constant, consistent platter

jason 7
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Short strokin'!

Love my first 100GB on a single platter 1TB drive.

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London teen pleads guilty to Spamhaus DDoS

jason 7
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Kid's these days...

...don't learn the lesson of consequences.

When the sh*t finally hits the fan it's then "wahh wahh wahh it's not my fault!"

Tough!

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easyGroup railroads easytrain.com owner

jason 7
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Sounds like someone got a brown envelope stuffed with cash to me.

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Brit GUN NUT builds WORKING SNIPER RIFLE at home out of scrap metal!

jason 7
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Re: Funny sizes?

"7 mil rounds have been around for ages"

Indeed, but you'll never find it in a general mass produced infantry weapon on today's battlefield.

Even the quite sexy Enfeld EM-2 was in 7mm but that was experimental.

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jason 7
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Re: Funny sizes?

Apparently 7mm would be the ultimate calibre. Whenever a group of specialists sit down to work out the best round for a general infantry weapon they come back to 7mm.

But as Ian V Hogg states "nobody ever gets a 7mm round as a result of it!"

Too many vested interests and politics basically.

However, it doesn't really matter. After WW2 they poured over masses of infantry reports and injury details and found that in a combat situation you are more likely to get hit by random flak/shrapnel than a aimed bullet over 50m+ range.

So all that's important is to be able to spray as much random lead down range as possible in the hope that something gets hit or keeps their head down. Hence the move to smaller rounds that are easier to carry but don't have the 2000m+ ranges. If it will still hurt at up to 300m it will do.

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jason 7
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Further interesting reading here -

http://www.theboxotruth.com/educational-zone-28-refinishing-a-us-savage-enfield-mk1-4-smle/

http://www.theboxotruth.com/educational-zone-32-refinishing-an-old-rifle/

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The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Thin plot, great CGI effects

jason 7
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Are the effects better than the first Hobbit movie? I watched that and was shocked that the film looked worse than the LOTR movies ten years earlier. Some scenes looked like they were done by the team that did Wing Commander game cut scenes from the early 90's.

Shame Jackson got greedy with the rest of them.

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The Great Unwatched: BBC hails glorious digital future for Three

jason 7
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Re: Dunno What They're Spending £55m On...

@snorlax

The funding for BBC3 goes like this -

£5 million to 'original' content.

£50 million to Seth McFarlane and Fox.

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Cloud Printing from a Chromebook: We try it out on 8 inkjet all-in-ones

jason 7
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Wi-fi and printers....

I now tell customers I do not support wi-fi printers.Yes I'd tell them what to do and show them but folks still like having their backsides wiped for them.

I got fed up getting called out to drive across the city to spend two minutes typing the WEP key back into the printer to connect it and then charging them £40 for the pleasure.

Especially when the printer cost £30.

I do have scruples. Like I said, get a mono laser with a Ethernet port and be done with it. Inkjets are toys.

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jason 7
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Why do people need colour inkjets still?

I visit a lot of customers. Most if not all have a colour inkjet sitting gathering dust in the corner. They often ask me "What do you recommend for printing?" I always say well if just printing get a £80 mono laserjet. Lasts longer and usually more robust!

"But what about colour printing?" they ask.

I then ask then when they last printed a colour photo or something that actually needed colour. I think only one of them ever had.

Pizza Express vouchers are just as acceptable in black and white folks.

I use a Dell 1260DN mono laser at home and it works fine with Chromebook and Android tablets/phones.

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Misty-eyed Ray Ozzie celebrates 25th birthday of Lotus Notes by tweeting about it ...

jason 7
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It was okay at first...

..then went downhill from there.

My main hatred was for the cut and paste side that if you moved the mouse more than 8mm it would zoom to select everything all the way to the bottom. Used to make us all swear a lot. Never seemed to get fixed with every version I used from 3 to 6 iirc.

Oh that and the stupid 20MB mailbox limit the admins set for most users.

Unfortunately I worked for a team that evangelised the Notes Database side. I hated it but we ended up in a huge company with hundreds and hundreds of Notes databases that were there because really no other product could do the job as quickly and cheaply. If a team was told 'NO' by everyone else they came to our team and got something they could use. I managed to avoid the Notes database building on the whole but my claim to fame was building a database that if the user used as it should have been would have been a nice little database. However, they decided to use it as a repository for all their Word/Excel docs instead of the built in reports and it ballooned to a whopping (ahem) 1TB by the time I left. Drove the Notes admins crazy having that lump on their servers.

Pleased me greatly.

I think the company dumped Notes a few years ago. They went to some other crappy email system...Outlook I think it's called.

They should go back to carbon paper memo pads IMO.

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VW's Scirocco diesel: A sheep in Wolfsburg’s clothing

jason 7
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Looks like...

a Golf that's been put in the microwave for 30 seconds.

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The Grandmaster: Epic, heart-melting, oh and there's lots of kung fu

jason 7
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Not a huge fan of such movies.

But I actually caught the first Donnie Yuen Ip Man movie on Film 4 and really enjoyed it. Also liked the second one.

Nice when movies you wouldn't normally watch surprise you like that.

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