70 posts • joined 11 Jun 2009
Flashback was awesome
I first played it on the Megadrive and loved it! My mum still remembers the game because she loved the animation of the man - it made that much of an impression. I later played the PC version with the additional and longer cut-scenes and then tracked down a copy of Flashback CD which never did quite make it out on the MegaCD but some of the changes weren't so good.
I used to have the sequel Fade to Black on PC but it disappeared and I never found it (found the box but not the CD). Never did finish that.
A HD re-make would be awesome, as would a complete re-build - I think if done properly and carefully it could work really well as a third person action/adventure a'la Tombraider.
Shame that Delphine disappeared like so many of the other great game devs of that time.
That was awesome, simply brilliant!
"However, without direct access, VIS data cannot be used as part of the mass passenger profiling announced by Home Secretary Theresa May in the wake of last week's foiled airline bomb plot."
Could someone please explain how increased passenger profiling would help prevent subversion of the airfreight industry?
Just to make a minor correction to your comment: Microsoft Security Essentials replaces Windows Defender - you should not run them side-by-side. Installing MSE will disable Defender, though I am not sure about the other way around.
I got the alert yesterday as I was preparing to re-install a laptop. Fooled me. Stupid ZA peeps, my wife was asking about putting it back on but after that stunt - no chance in hell.
What I would really like to see is a decent interface to the Windows built-in firewall. Trying to use the admin applet is horrific - even Linux has decent interfaces to the beast that is IPTables, so surely MS could come up with something more user friendly.
Re: It's History... by AC
I am not sure about Chome and FF, but in Opera speed dial has to be configured with your chosen sites - it doesn't just pick your most frequented pr... I mean business related sites.
Further: in Opera Private Browsing can be instigated on a per tab basis without having to restart the whole application. Just right click on the + icon to add a new tab and select "private tab" as the new tab type. Nothing is stored after that tab is closed.
If you are feeling really paranoid ensure that all the caches are cleared when the browser is shutdown (Preferences - Advanced - History). block third party cookies and prevent Opera keeping your typed URI history.
Re: open button
Not sure if this will apply to the BluRay player, but every Philips DVD player I have had has allowed the disk to be ejected by holding down the Stop button for several seconds. Try it, it might work - if not, oh well.
@Ian Ferguson: Still no Blue-ray
Apparently his Jobs-ness has decided that Blu-ray is dead already and will be super-ceded by 1080p digital download / streaming - so why bother now? Allegedly. I think I read that on Macrumours (here in fact: http://www.macrumors.com/2010/06/30/steve-jobs-suggests-blu-ray-not-coming-to-mac-anytime-soon/).
I am due a PC upgrade this year and am seriously considering a Mac Pro - though I would get a memory upgrade from Crucial and HDDs from anywhere else - Apple take the piss with their upgrade charges :(
You pay for convenience
Problem with DIY is that you then have to be sure than any update / security fix etc won't brick it. Further: how well do DIY machines handle scaling the file system with replacing disks? Does your DIY have removable drives (in caddies or not)? Would you use a dedicated RAID card (add 150quid+ for a decent RAID5 card) or the crappy onboard RAID? I wouldn't want to trust to software RAID5 etc etc etc.
The advantage of a pre-built unit is that it should be tested, dependable and a time saver when setting it up. Speaking for myself: I have a ReadyNAS NV+. It has been one of my best hardware purchases in years. It is a small neat unit, exceptionally quiet, will auto-expand as I replace disks with larger capacities and any firmware updates are thoroughly tested before they are released.
So I guess it comes down to how much time do you have? If you have a weekend spare to build, configure and test a DIY solution - then all the power to you. If (on the other hand) time is limited and you just want something that works - buy a pre-built solution.
Re: proprietary usb lead
To the best of my knowledge the lead isn't proprietary - it is a standard socket in Cowons home market. I believe all similar devices use the exact same lead and this topic came up in the S9 review. Maybe someone familiar with the Asia scene can comment and confirm/deny that one :)
And another thing: why on earth do I want "apps" on my media player? I want it to play music and (to a lesser extent) video as good as possible - even from compressed files. I have the 32GB S9 and a pair of Bose QuietComfort 15 headphones and the sound is simply unbeatable. I love the player and I get ~48hours of playback out of it (for music). If I want to play games, I have a DS.
Before the S9 I had the Cowon X5, which was an excellent audio player too - until it just died :( Oh and I love the fact you just drag and drop files to the device rather than having to mess around with any kind of management software (e.g. iTunes blaah!)
Wow, Uk gets jipped (again)
Just did some conversions using x-rates.com (yes it is family safe!) and even compared to Canada, the UK users are getting jipped to the tune of $300 (either US or CAD).
Import duty doesn't even begin to cover that amount, so yeah. I feel for you guys I really do. On current rates Canadians get a 29CAD premium.
A few others
Keka (http://www.kekaosx.com/en/): for decompressing files, just runs in the background.
Cyberduck (http://cyberduck.ch/): for SFTP chores
Flip4Mac (http://www.telestream.net/flip4mac-wmv/overview.htm): play WMV on mac, also has a paid for pro version for doing other stuff.
Perian (http://perian.org/): codecs galore for QuickTime
Opera (http://www.opera.com/): Opera web browser :)
Opera Mail aint so bad
I switched to it a while back after getting fed up with Evolution for Windows just never working quite right. It takes some getting used to - especially the lack of folders, and training the filters can be tedious - but so far it's been fine.
Several bad things not touched on though: getting your contacts in is hard! Opera Mail does not support many formats and has only a small array of fields. Getting stuff out is equally not a trivial task.
Plus though: cross-platform, works on Windows, Mac and Linux :)
Undecided on the new look...
I tried the beta very briefly the other day - I didn't notice Opera 10.5 was in to RC status already. Very impressed with the Carakan engine. Certainly a lot snappier than before.
Now I have installed 10.5 and upgraded my existing install - along with my email *gulp* (and yes I use M2, it's alright). So far it's been OK but the JS benchmarks cause 10.5 to run out of memory. I have so far tested V8 version 5 and http://dromaeo.com/ and both failed to complete fully. The beta 2 did finish V8 v5 without issue so no idea what's happened there. Could be an issue on Win 7 x64 though (last test was on XP).
I am still undecided on the new look. I actually like my toolbars but now you can't really use them so I am taking the plunge without. It's a little bit of a pain trying to locate stuff again though. I think that there should be a little more work done to make it easier to find stuff (e.g. dev tools were kinda buried).
Otherwise, seems to be OK. I'll reserve judgement until I've had more time to actually use it as I would usually.
@AC gah 11/01/2010 13:35
A fantastic post! Not laughed that loudly for quite a while. Thanks for making my evening :)
It could turn out alright.... maybe, perhaps...
So long as they don't try to cram Dune into 2 hours. It really does need to be a 4 hour movie. I think with careful editing and selection of the main plot elements from the book, you could do it but it would take a lot of dedication and refusing to toe the industry line to do it. You would also have to make that difficult choice of whether you assume the audience is already familiar with the Dune universe or not.
Just a minute...
Whoa whoa whoa! Did the German airlines say that they won't accept them because the German Government does NOT recognise the cards as a valid ID device? Did I just read that right?!
If that is the case does that mean you can leave the UK but cannot enter another European country or if you do - can't actually get back because those countries do not recognise it?
The most important question to be answered is now: which countries do NOT yet recognise the UK ID card yet as a valid identity document?
Someone please remind again of the "benefits" of this scheme... I seem to be missing them.
I can't help but snigger and laugh that i4i won. It's always nice to see yet another company stick a dagger into that big ol'bag o'lard that is MS. HOWEVER this patent and "invention" is, well, crap really and just highlights why software should not be patentable. Because of that I do have a small amount of pity for MS - only a little mind - a tiny sliver ;)
It's a shame that these days too many companies view software patents as cash cows (MS included) and I really hope that no other countries allow them. The more they are allowed, the more that they will cause irreparable harm to software development in general - especially to small developers / companies as there is no way to be able to ensure you are not infringing without spending vast sums of money on very expensive patent lawyers.
At any rate I am sure (once again) that the irony of all this is completely lost on MS.
How many access attempts?
"...T-Mobile said that during 2008 it answered 137,444 requests for its existing basic billing and location data from law enforcement and intelligence agencies..."
They answered 376 requests A DAY?!?! How many did the other networks respond to? How many requests is that in proportion to the number of crimes committed in 2008? How many of those requests were warranted and how many were fishing trips? Was the data even used? In how many crimes was it even useful? Isn't anyone else concerned about that figure??
Just a little foot-note re: ajax
MS were the ones that actually created AJAX... well the underlying process of XMLHttpRequest. It was first in IE 5.5 (I think, but I CBA to check), then certainly IE6. It was years before anyone actually made use of it. So at least as far as AJAX (that we all know, and presumably "love", today) you can thank MS for that little known and underused ActiveX control.
Not that I want to defend MS at all, but they did manage to do something useful with that and I think many (if not most) people seem to forget that little known fact.
All well and good, except the EU response says that there is no obligation to provide it or that airlines should collect it or that it indeed HAS to be provided at all. So if they were to use your suggestion as a "get through faster" type thing, they would be breaking EU law.
"Passengers must be informed in advance that handing over the information is neither compulsory nor ... a condition of purchase and sale of the ticket"
"Passengers who are EU citizens or their family members will not be refused entry/exit or incur sanctions in any way on the basis that their passenger data is unavailable to the UK authorities for whatever reason"
So it's a completely pointless programme on all accounts for anyone that's a European. Of course anyone else it would apply to; at least in theory.
No the problem is...
...that the first user account created on Windows Vista or 7 is an Administrator account so UAC is merely a nag screen when in that context. You don't have to enter any password, so the danger is users than just click OK to everything regardless of what the prompt is for. They then become conditioned to just clicking OK to make it go away and that's where you get the problems.
Instead Win Vista and 7 should create 2 accounts, the user account and the manager account. I am not sure how you could explain this to a typical end user though. For me on Win7, I was running as Admin, but have since added a separate user for doing admin and I run my account as a limited user, so now UAC prompts for the Admin users password to do stuff. That might emphasise the difference.............. *hahahahahahahahahaha* yeah I know straws and clutching!
That settles it...
Time for a new wireless router that will properly handle WPA2, unless there is something better now? Man I really hope so!
My poor Linksys WRT54Gv8 is really showing it's age now :(
It always was limited time...
...which makes me glad I got mine when I did - but I had thought it would have lasted longer than 6 weeks. Mind you, wasn't it: "until supplies run-out" anyway?? Call me cynical, but somehow I doubt they sold every single copy already.
No mention of the Cowon S9 at all. Has it fallen out of favour with El' Reg?
It was from Naked Gun, but I don't remember specifically which one (I think the first) - Frank says to the girl: "I believe in safe sex" and the next scene is of both of them in giant condoms.
It's very nice, very very nice :)
I just picked up the D300 myself and I am loving it. Though I have a lot to learn about it. I wasn't interested in the video options of the s myself. Seems more like a gimmick than anything I would find useful.
A word of caution for people looking at this. The prices have been up and down like a yo-yo of late, while the D300 stock has been cleared out. In Canada, the D300s was launched at over 2K CAD (really ouch!) but now seems to have settled back to about 1800 CAD (just ouch!). I don't know if the UK prices varied that much, but it might be worthwhile holding off for another month, just to allow them to settle a little more (and get post-Xmas sales!!).
Re: Are you sure the xbox 360 is a Power box?
Yes. Xbox 360 has a custom IBM PowerPC 3 core, dual thread, CPU design (something not wiki: http://hardware.teamxbox.com/articles/xbox/1144/The-Xbox-360-System-Specifications/p1).
Xbox 1 (the original) had some P3 / celeron half-breed thing from Intel (http://hankfiles.pcvsconsole.com/answer.php?file=135).
It took them that long to err sum a few numbers that they are already logging?! How slack is that?! I am on Cogeco, and we've had bandwidth figures (and the last 3 months available) since we signed up over 18 months ago.
@Dave Bell: you use more than you think, especially if you download games on Steam. I just bought Dragon Age: Origins, Ghostbusters and Riddick. That's 35GB right there. I get 60GB/month. Hell if I'd bought any more games from the Steam sale, I'd have ripped through my quota.
And in final answer I average about 20-30GB a month bandwidth according to the stats. I dunno if that is a lot, it's about half my due.
Home folders can be moved entirely............ but only if you create a custom install image and set the mount point for it in an auto answer script. Apparently you can symlink the Users folder, but on a live system I don't think I'd fancy my chances with that one ;)
Quite why MS can't just give an "Advanced" option during installation, I will never know. I would dearly love to be able to say "Stick Hom... sorry Users on the D: drive please, thanks". I totally agree with you though, it shouldn't take 600+ clicks to just move your folders to a place outside your OS partition.
Re: Backup - you also forgot with Backup, if you want to backup to a NAS or network server you can only backup to a machine running Windows 7!!!!! *arrrrgh* So it's pointless.
That said, Windows 7 is OK, but it does have lots of inconsistencies and more than a few rough edges (Control Panel especially, fourth version of it seems like MS can't decide how it should work, hint - leave it as applets that open in a new window and have done with it!).
@AC Still problems with Windows 7: re the taskbar/superbar thing, travesty/farce. I see you've struggled much like I did at first. You have likely tried to add shortcut icons and pin them; which is wrong! You need to pin the RUNNING program, otherwise it will reappear all over. No, I don't know why it is that retarded - but it is. So if you pin the running programs you can then drag them up and down and the position will be remembered with any new apps being thrown at the end. Hope that helps you a bit - it really, REALLY annoyed the hell out of me!
Still out on Unite
I tried it in the previous betas, and for me it's pretty pointless though I can see some utility for those people who want to send large files and who would usually go for email (baulk!).
On the other hand, I recently switched to Operas M2 mail client, and despite some initial reservations I have to say I am pleasantly surprised. It's a little clunky in places, but it does everything I want out of a mail client - and it's cross-platform.
@Whitter re: widgets; I think the plan is to make them standalone and no longer tied to the browser window itself so they can float on the OS desktop. Well that was my understanding. I still think they should be dropped altogether. Never found anything of use out of them. Perhaps a better plugin framework would be good, but with that said when I use Firefox plugins it is to bring Firefox up to the default level of functionality that Opera has... read into that what you want ;)
And this is news because...?
People didn't think that MS would go the proprietary route? Even after all their history? And it comes as a surprise when they do?
Reminds me of that proverb about the scorpion, that asks to be carried across a river. It then stings the swimmer, retorting just before the death of said swimmer: "sorry, it's my nature".
Autorun: nope, alive and well - you have to disable it :( And the default is to run a prompt to ask what you should do with the CD/DVD. Oh yeah, and you still have to turn off "hide extensions of known file types".
@Avalanche: with Vista I would get on average 3 or 4 UAC prompts a day just from using it. BUT I was doing dev work and needed to be able to edit the hosts file and various other config files and run services etc. I dare say for normal email and letter writing / web browsing you wouldn't see any prompts at all, other than those you already mentioned.
Finally: were the tests conducted using a "limited user" account or an "Administrator" account? I would be interested to know what the results would be in that instance and if that makes any difference at all (likely not).
Except Opera Link will now sync quick dial, typed history, custom search providers, notes and other stuff (http://www.opera.com/link/).
Which was great when I had to reinstall Windows 7 after my borked Vista upgrade. There is something extremely satisfying to open Opera, login to sync and all your bookmarks, quick dials and searches are already in place. Now if they could add keyboard profiles and menu preferences that would be even better :)
That was great :) ... I just had to tell someone about it :D
but I've been enjoying my Wii's 480p output upscaled to 720p for months, thanks to the Harman-Kardon AVR354. Looks pretty good to be honest.
@Citizen Kaned: I actually quite like the controllers - but it depends how they are implemented. Lego <insert title here> all work really well. So does Zelda and Mario Galaxy. de Blob is alright for the most part, but pointing down to jump is so totally f'ed up.
Oh and another thing: since when did "photo-realistic" become a mandate?? To be honest I get pretty sick and tired of it. Fresh, bright and cartoony graphics make for a change in a sea of browns and greys.
Anandtech came to a similar conclusion regarding price/performance of the 5770, but they seemed to quite like the 5750 because it ran so much cooler and performed much in line with the 4850 (conclusion: http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3658&p=14).
Guess it all depends on what you want out of it.
Me, I only just got a 4890 a few months back, so no plans to change yet!
I largely agree with you. The Government should take a step back from the education system. All they have done is bugger it up even more than it was! Most of the time the decisions that are made aren't even made by teachers... or people who have ever taught. It's disgusting. Plus all the meddling in the A-Levels and GCSEs has left students going to University at a great disadvantage as they now lack problem solving skills and there is an expectation that answers will be provided (yeah I know it's not all, but it is a frighteningly large percentage).
You know that in one curriculum, it was planned out down to the minute what the teacher was expected to do and even how the subject was supposed to be taught. Now where the hell is the room for creativity, diversions, interest and problem solving in that? And then people wonder why we have disengaged youth.
Hell I remember the changes that were happening back when I was finishing my A-levels... and that was in Spring 1997! not that long ago. The upstarts in the first year were absolute little shits (Sixth form was attached to the secondary school) - I dread to think what it is like now :(
Mediocre effort from MS
I bought the family pack Saturday and first upgraded Vista Home Premium. This was a complete mess even after first running the Upgrade Advisor and following all of it's instructions including removing problematic software. Stuff was broken, control panel applets would not run, I was getting "Explorer.exe failed to start server" type error messages, programs would not open though they would get a running task in task manager. So much for "in-place upgrade".
Formatted, re-installed and rebuilt piece by piece installing my previously downloaded drivers and updated software. So far OK. Though many of the changes that have been made are pointless. WHY has Control Panel changed 4 times - it's been different in every version of Windows since 2000/95/98. First XP, then Vista and now 7 have different views. MS just pick one and be done with it... and NOT Vista or Win 7s! They suck. And not "category view" it doesn't work.
What the hell is up with Windows Explorer?! Navigating folders is now a nightmare (perhaps I've not yet spent enough time with it) and the taskbar changes are again stupid. No quick launch, instead you pin icons... except they now launch AND switch to the program. WTF?! Makes no sense to me. At least they fixed Desktop Search so it's not a dog and is no longer the most resource sapping program every known (not tried with my files restored yet though so judgement still reserved). Oh and why have they gone back to "MY ...." folder names? Urgh!
So far it's better than Vista (for the most part) but hell... that aint exactly saying much. Better than XP? No. MS made a bunch of changes for no good reason that I can see. Many frivolous, and I really don't think they bothered looking at how most people actually use their computer. And whoever came up with the idiotic ribbon needs to be taken out and shot. Really I mean come on; it fails on every level and now it's being put into the OS?! :(
@Ed Blackshaw, Windows versions are more like:
3.1 = 3
95 = 4.0
98 = 4.1
ME (*choke*) = 4.5
2000 = 5.0
XP = 5.5
Vista = 6.0
7 = 6.1
It's all about price...
Windows 7 is still too expensive. That's it basically. I am interested in upgrading, but not at the prices MS are asking. In my mind it's a slightly more advanced service pack and should be priced accordingly - especially for Vista -> Windows 7 upgrades.
If MS really want to drive uptake, then they need to drop the price to under 50quid, otherwise, why bother?
When Win ME came out there was a Win 98 -> ME upgrade for under 40quid, why can't MS do that again?
Also what happened to the so called "family pack"?? I am not seeing it anywhere!
And you seriously trust the Government to be able to manage and maintain perhaps the biggest database of its type ever attempted? On their track record? And not have serious security breaches or incorrect details on your record?
I am speechless... you are either a government lacky that's bought their crap hook line and sinker, or you really don't get what the database means and what little comeback you will get once on it.
Fan-bloody-tastic! Looks like the prospect of beer tokens paid off ;)
Not content with ruining their own industry (content), they want to savage all other industries - especially IT. If ever there was a need for action to be taken, it is against the dinosaurs of the content industry, before they are allowed to cause any more unnecessary damage.
I find it unbelievable that in the last, what 12-14 years, they have not been able to innovate any services or provide alternatives, and yet they still expect special protections and exceptions.
Now if only...
...they could get Jon what's-his-name to stop those diatribes against MS.
Don't get me wrong, I love Opera and have been a devotee for years now (since V5 in fact), but even I can't stomach some of the crap that gets published about how unfair life is with IE and MS and blah blah blah blah. Do us a favour, stick to building the best web browser! :) Cheers.
Excuse me what?!
"Millions of people love Torchwood and would probably pay 10 bucks an episode rather than two bucks"
10USD to watch a streamed show and not keep it or be able to do anything with it? Are they taking the piss? OMFG! What planet is he on? 2USD, maybe, 1USD OK... but 10?? F*** off!
<some witty title here>
In years gone by I used to use Dr. Solomons, until it became horribly expensive... and acquired by McAfee. I then used McAfee for a while until it became this enormous bloated mess that didn't seem to work well.
It was then AVG free edition. I've been using it without issue for years now, but I would never, EVER pay for the thing! AVG is waaaaaayyyyyy over-priced for what it does.
I actually tried McAfee 2009 (the bank was offering it for free)... HUGE mistake! It made my Vista 64 crash on start-up every single time. Google'd for it, known issue that McAfee were ignoring, I had to disable a bunch of services, but the damage was already done. Hell even after removing it AND using McAfee Remover, I was still getting the crashes on start-up. SP2 for Vista eventually fixed that. I went back to AVG free, which at least worked (though I do not install link scanner, what's the point, in only works with IE and I use Opera anyway!).
Finally; I never use Norton... ever! Been burned so many times in the past by that PoS that I refuse to have it anywhere near my machines. If it comes pre-installed it's the first thing removed - IF you can remove it! Like McAfee, it's like a growth that hooks in all over and is never fully removed, leaving DLL's all over the place *shudder*
This should be fun
To the best of my knowledge (IANAL, and not American); US consumer law has a first sale doctrine in that the original purchaser is free to re-sell, loan, etc. the item that they purchased. In the case of software, provided that the package includes the original media, books (if any) and other components, the original purchaser is free to flog it on to anyone they choose and no company, or "EULA" can stop them - it's a right enshrined in the good ol' Constitution (or something like that).
So basically any EULA is actually preventing a US citizen from enjoying their rights. I wonder if Autodesk have thought this through properly... because they could end up in a position where their EULA is examined in detail, found to be so ass-backwards, convoluted and so against the consumer that it is found to be null and void. That could possibly then set a president in law that software EULAs are in fact illegal where they attempt to control the sale of goods and the entire software industry suddenly has a rather large problem on their hands. Oww, I like that idea! ;)
It's like the games companies trying to stamp out the second hand market. They are the only people that are demanding another bite of the pie. Well you know what guys? Tough! No other industry has something like that. You want an example? My mother is an author, has had several books published. She only makes money on first sales and loans/sales from/into libraries (but library fees is tiny, like fractions of pennies). She gets nothing from second hand book sales and some of her first published titles are going for 70-100 USD! (originally price something like 8 USD). Is that fair? No, but that is how things are. Same deal with used cars, or TVs or DVD players or... Software industry makes me angry sometimes, but I digress.
Office 2007 surely?
"Microsoft debuted its controversial Ribbon interface that it prefers to dub “Fluent” in Office 2003."
I am sure that a tonne of people have pointed this out already but err, didn't the bloody ribbon start with Office 2007?? 2K3 has standard menu bars with a sorta blueish / orangey colour scheme (and kinda rounded) from what I recall.
Cowon S9 (iAudio S9, reviewed here on El RegHardware) can do that; you have to turn it on first (resume audio playback). Also has it for videos too. I've taken to using it on mine :)
It's a start now what about...
...enabling file extensions all the time as well? Why are they hidden by default? Another blindingly stupid "default" decision.
@tuna 1: Thanks for the tip! I'll be sure to add that to the enormous long list of "crap to be disabled".
Yay! My Friday is finally complete (@9:50am)
At long last! A new BOFH... with an in-probably low Beancounter body count; me thinks the PFY and BOFH are getting old and letting the side down ;) (Especially as the PFY still had half a brick).
Now... just how long until the next one?!?! 24 Jul 11:02 ...[the entire month of August]... 11 Sep 11:02. It's heart breaking that BOFH is getting so thin on the grounds; it's been something I've looked forward to on a Friday for, well, years.
Maybe Simon Travaglia needs a donation drive: send beer tokens his way for more episodes??