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* Posts by Peter R. 1

344 posts • joined 15 Jun 2009

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Google to scan Chrome extensions, bans auto-install

Peter R. 1

Google Chrome and Toolbar must be the most prolific spamware out there (apart maybe from Ask). I have it trying to weasel itself onto one of my computers at least once a week as a payload of something else (from google earf to a simple editor).

Most of the time it tries to install itself in the 'default install' of whatever you're trying to access an you have to do a custom install to get shot of it.

I don't care how good it is, it annoys me no end and I will not use it !

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Dead Steve Jobs' mega yacht seized by testy Philippe Starck

Peter R. 1

In this area of the globe it is not unusual - nay standing practice - for an architect to be paid a percentage of the ultimate bill for putting up a building.

Now, Mr. S+arck (not to be confused with Philippe de Staercke, a Belgian gangster of some disrepute) fancies himself a bit of a devil-designs-all, and has some buildings to his name, so I'm guessing he figured the tub was so ugly it couldn't be confused with a ship so it must've been a building.

Now, apparently the 6% is not in question, only whether the amount upon which this is calculated should be 100 or 150 million AM$.

Since he is convinced he is owed money, he proceeded to have a claim put on a property belonging to the party owing him the dosh. The fact that in this case it is the offending article (I choose my words carefully) itself is merely a coincidence. He probably estimated his chances of putting the chain on the US estate (or parts of it) to have a very slim chance of success. I wonder where he got that idea.

Nevertheless, someone will have to have the whole kaboodle surveyed and subsequently have to convince a court.

If Flippo thinks he was shortchanged I wish him the best of luck.

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North Korean rocket works, puts something into orbit

Peter R. 1

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

What on earth (excusez le pun) did they put up there ? Because unfortunately, we can not depend upon the NK great leader for it to be something scientific or sensible.

Pretty much everything NK has announced in the last few decades has been stuff geared towards giving them leverage in negotiations for aid of sorts. Their whole economy seems to be based on extortion.

So I wouldn't put it past them to put up a small and extremely dirty nuke (can such weights be lifted into space by this missile ?) or a chemical or bio payload.

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After 50 years, Europe gets one patent to rule them all

Peter R. 1

But for one reason or another...

The Spanish and the Italians refuse to play ball. Now what's that all about ?

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

Peter R. 1
Pint

It's funny...

Not being of the British persuasion, the first time I saw Moore on 'the sky at night' many moons ago, I was just zapping along at some unholy hour and I came aross this funny talking bloke with a monocle and eyebrows that were clearly following their own script.

Initially I thought I'd come across some Monty Python episode I hadn't seen up to then, half expecting four blokes in a dress jumping into view yelling 'no one expects the Spanish inquisition !'.

Over the years I kept watching his contributions, however, and he always had interesting stuff to share, and somehow he always managed to go about it in a way that made you want to watch it and learn a bit. He never lost the mad professor look though. I expect he cultivated it to some extent.

I always found it a shame they didn't put him on at a more sensible hour.

May he roam the great expanse forever. If he so believed.

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Valve chief confirms Steam-centric console-killing PC

Peter R. 1

I would be very interested so see what graphics solution they propose. Building a mini-ITX form factor with significant graphics muscle is a real pain, as I have discovered trying to build a smallish gaming machine.

Half height graphics boards based on the 675M or 680MX are not available at this time, and the GT640 and ATi 7750 performance is woeful when used at hi-res with all sorts of filtering and texture mapping.

It would be possible to build custom boards with a powerful CPU and on-board graphics solution (call it an iMac Mini for the sake of argument) but this would require a power supply in the region of 250W, which would leave you with either a bigger case or a huge power brick, and the custom board would make it propriety (and locked in) not to mention bloody expensive.

I'm really curious to see what they come up with.

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Review: Apple Mac Mini 2012

Peter R. 1

No problem here.

I've got a 3570K-HD4000 running 10.8.2 over HDMI and have NO screen issues whatsoever. So either Apple's already patched it or it's not 'driver' but CPU related.

Agree though that Apple should've fixed it. Maybe the could fire someone.

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Australian Prime Minister: Mayan calendar 'true'

Peter R. 1
Happy

Re: Excoriation of Tony Abbott (video link)

Hacker: I'm appalled.

Sir Humphrey: You're appalled? I'm appalled.

Hacker: I just can't believe it I'm ... I'm appalled. What do you make of it Bernard?

Bernard: I'm appalled.

Hacker: So am I, appalled.

Sir Humphrey: (after a pause) It's appalling.

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2012: an epoch-defining year for home entertainment

Peter R. 1

Next year, however...

We'll find out what's here to stay and what's not.

3D TV has apparently been consigned to the annals of history, and rightfully so. It was just a gimmick.

Blue Ray ? Is anyone buying the discs ? I was at an electronics megastore last week and found recent blockbuster releases like the last Batman movie in the bargain bin. I purchased a BR Drive for one of my HTPC's for 50 quid. There can't be any money left in it for the big players that invested heavily in it, especially during the HD-DVD war years. I imagine all the money Sony et all poured in it to win the standards war is just a write off.

4K ? Possibly only for direct satellite reception and places with the newest generation broadband internet connections. But for the masses I don't think it will happen in the next 10 years. TV sets yes, but actual TV show production in 4K ? Don't think so. look at how long it took for 720K to become prevalent. Must be around 15 years.

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US and UK spooks alerted over massive Swiss data leak

Peter R. 1

Re: In other news...

It doesn't work that way, unfortunately. Swizerland has come under a great deal of pressure lately (including from the US) to do away with their banking confidentiality. deals have been struck, agreements have been signed, nudges have been nudged and winks have been winked.

In this case, the German taxman would simply ask the Swiss bank if a German national named X has a bank account with them. If the answer is yes, they would verify (which of course they have done up front) if X has declared said account on his/her tax form. If this would not seem to be the case, they would wave the official inquiry, not the illicitly obtained CD.

To add insult to injury, tax law over here works on the principle of 'guilty until proven innocent' (yes, this has been confirmed by the courts).

And we do NOT have jury trials for anything but capital offence cases. Which, of course tax evasion is not. Although I would probably piss myself laughing if a multi billionair tax-evader (Taxi Vader ?) would insist on being tried by a jury of his peers !

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Peter R. 1

In other news...

One of the German Bundersländer has bought a CD for the princely sum of 2.5 million Euro from an undisclosed source, containing account details of some 1500 swiss accounts. The data was stolen from UBS. Our German friends have allegedly already recuperated some 200.000.000 Euro's in backtaxes as a result of acquiring these stolen goods.

AFAIK this is the second time something like this has happened.

I don't know what's worse at this point : the tax evaders or governments using tax payer's money to purchase stolen information.

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Motörheadphönes Overkill earphones review

Peter R. 1

I'll try and phrase the question carefully, but....

Do these rubbers squeak ? I own a pair of similar earphones, but I find that when moving the rubber sleeve squeaks quite loudly, making playing music at low volumes really annoying.

Any info ?

Pete

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Littlest pirate’s Winnie-the-Pooh laptop on the way home

Peter R. 1

Let me look in ly chrystal ball here...

The Anti Piracy Gang told dat that they would start making things very expensive for him. The laptop would be impounded, charges would be brought, and he would have to get a lawyer in a drawn out case including appeal proceedings, and it was very likely to end up costing him thounsands in the long run.

Dad possibly did not have thousands in disposable income to front the costs of allthese proceedings so they took him for everything he could could spare. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess the 300 quid is coming out of his holiday presents budget and his family will have to do with a bit less over the festive days.

Maybe someone should post the names of the piracy body's enforcers that forced this deal from dad. I'm sure there are plenty Fins that wouldn't mind explaining matters to them so this kind of racketeering will be delt with in a more civilized matter in future.

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Clap Google, Amazon in irons to end tax shenanigans - MPs

Peter R. 1

Could someone explain WHY...

I, as a company or private person, would pay X taxes when I an get away with X/2 taxes (insert any number you like) ?

Where do you think those 500£ 50" flatscreens come from ? Let me enlighten you : YOU can only buy that appliance (or any other you may want) at such a stupidly low price if it's made in a country with very low or no corporate tax by people making a buck a day with no health or dental plan, redundancy pay, unemployment benefits and/or other social protection.

So choose wisely.

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Tech titans lose our loyalty: Are fanbois a dying breed?

Peter R. 1

Added value : more than downloadable apps.

Can't speak for anyone else. Just me.

I'm in the enviable position that when I consider a purchase I don't have to look at the price alone. 'Is it really necessary' is a relatively moot point. If our spending pattern was driven by necessity we would all be driving Fiestas, live in a chicken coop and survive on bread and water. Because, really, most of what we spend our hard-earned on is ultimately 'not necesary', as in 'if you don't you die'. YMMV. You get the point.

So we could argue that most of what we purchase is a luxury purchase. You don't 'need' a desktop if you own a half decent laptop, you can read books from you library, and you can sit down and make article notes on recycled paper. You don't 'need' a Galaxy S12 wit dropthings an speech recognition.

But we strive to make our lives more comfortable with all kinds of gadgets and stuff that fall in the 'not required for breathing" categories, and derive a certain amoint of entertainment and joie de vivre from all manner of gadgets.

When I buy these gadgets I generally son't mind paying over the odds because I find a phone 'nicer' than another one, or get a car with a bigger engine because of some very subjective notion of it 'driving better' than the Fiesta. Ultimately, my average speed over a year would be exactly the same in the Fiesta than in the big Benz, and believe it or not, the Fiesta is dry inside too.

Now, as I said, i don't mind baying OTT, I don't even mind gving in to my repressed 'fanboi' every once in a while, but when I do I expect to be treated accordingly. I don't mind paying for an iPhone, but when I go to their store I expect them to have all varieties in stock for me to take away, I expect to pe spoken to and not at by a salesperson with produt knowledge and an elementary notion of manners, and when something goes awry (and it inevitably will) I expect to be treated with the service onbe expects from a premium brand. I also expect said brand to be of better quality than something osting a quarter of the price.

(Note : I use the Apple brand as an example here. You may insert any vendor you wish)

But when I do pay a premium, and I am not listened too, lied to, the sales drone walks off in the middle of a demo, subsequently receive a product that is seriously flawed (AND I'm accused of 'holding it wrong), get dismal warranty coverage and am charged silly prices for repairs because 'I must've dropped it', there comes a point when I am no longer prepared to pay the premium.

And this, IMO, is what everyone is started to find out : the ads try to sell you the idea that you are an upmarket, valued customer, but one the sle is made it turnes out you're just an average slob parted with his/her money and no one has any further interest in you.

So, manufacturers of premium brands : premium does not mean 'more expensive'. It means 'better than everything else'. In EVERY department.

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Microsoft claims £3.6m piracy scalp in China

Peter R. 1

3.6 Million ?

A RETAILER has 3.6 MILLION quid in loose cash to pay out a settlement ? That must be one hell of a retailer. What sort of turnover does this guy generate ?

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Saucy Star Wars strip show - sorry, burlesque - to tour Down Under

Peter R. 1

This thread is useless...

Without pics ! Although I'll let the Thorne option pass me by.

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John McAfee 'captured'

Peter R. 1

Psst...

It is I, Leclerc, cleverly disguised as an onion salesman !

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Archaeologists uncover 'Unicorn's lair'

Peter R. 1

Catching one...

I believe involves the use of virgins. Or at least A virgin. Them NK's are always good for a larf. Whatever will they come up with next.

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Chinese buyers falling out of love with iPhones

Peter R. 1

Re: Are the Chinese exceptionally patriottic ?

What you say is of couse true, but it is easy to prefer Apple in the US or Sammy in SK because they make really good products. There's a lot to like.

What I'm wondering about is if the Chinese are preferring an 'inferior' (I can't seem to be able to come up with a better word for now) product. 'It may not be an iPhone or a Galaxy, but WE made it and OUR families make their living from it'. That kind of thing.

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Peter R. 1

Are the Chinese exceptionally patriottic ?

I am wondering if our Chinese friends are favouring their own brands. Maybe they are just finding their own products have come along far enough to be acceptable as alternatives to products sold by foreign companies.

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Microsoft halves Surface RT production orders - report

Peter R. 1

Maybe they swapped something that didn't sell for something that might sell. Or something they make a bit of money on for something they hope to make more on.

Maybe Ballmer should just change his name to Baldrick. I honestly don't know. It was just a question.

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Peter R. 1

Straight Swap

Is it possible they just traded production volume for the Pro and we're getting only half the story?

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Far Cry 3 game review

Peter R. 1

The verdict is in

I am saddened to have to report that unfortunately this one is just like number 2, with another story strapped to it. If you liked 2 you'll have a great time. Me ? Not so much.

Looking forward to Crysis 3 though.

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Motörheadphönes Motörizer rock 'phones review

Peter R. 1

Re: If they're good enough for Herr Kilmister...

Every organism known to man probably dies once it enters his bloodstream He has been expressly forbidden to donor bloodtransfusions ever.

Imagine the jolt you'll get when someone hooks you up to this guy's metabolics.

Ace of spades indeed !

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Peter R. 1

If they're good enough for Herr Kilmister...

They're good enough for me.

This is the third or fourth review I've read about these phönes and every review has been amazingly favorable.

Think headmaster Lemmy had any say in them or is he just fattening up his retirement fünd ?

Nah, forget it...that was a stupid question.

Rock on Lemmy !

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Want to run your own Apple shop? Start with £70k of German chairs

Peter R. 1

It's not uncommon

It's called franchising. It's been around for bloody ages. Anything from Mercedes Benz to MD and KFC, warehouses, plumbing supplies, Trek, Cannondale, you name it.

The only thing actually worrying about it is the franchiser setting the prices. Allowing rebates is always frowned upon, and often punished when discovered by the franchiser.

This is what's called price fixing, and it's illegal. But oddly no one seems to be bothered.

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Peter R. 1

Re: "But customers need choice, they want to be able to try products that work alongside Apple."

Yes. The chairs, f'rinstance !

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Oi, Apple, stick to phones, forget about TV - Time Warner CEO

Peter R. 1

TV is not music.

Apple has been able to convince big labels to sell through their iStore by selling them fear of losing even more marketshare.

TV is a different animal. I sicerely doubt if -at least at this time- they can get the large production houses to give them preference over the classic broadasting outfits. I don't think the production houses can afford to lose the support of the NBC's, ABC's Fox' and HBO's at this time.

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Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro gets laptop-level price

Peter R. 1

Battery life will make it or break it

If they can get decent battery life out of it (like 10-12 hours) I think they have a fighting chance. However, at those prices they are ogling the enterprise, and even if I had a very good reason to recommend these for my engineers and construction managers I would never get IT to support 8, so it would be a no-no. MAYBE if they could get 7 to work on it without a hassle I could get them to condone it, but otherwise it''ll be smallish laptops.

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iPod daddy: Ousted iOS chief Scott Forstall 'got what he deserved'

Peter R. 1

Re: >"Apple is better off without such autocracy"

A bit like a rotating dial, so to speak ?

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Ten badass brainy computers from science fiction

Peter R. 1

Not in a movie..

But definitely the most worrying bit of hardware : Hex in the Unseen University's science department. It's administrator is Ponder Stibbons, and it proudly displays a sticker 'Anthill Inside'.

It's possibilities are endless !

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Apple's former retail boss spills magic beans on store strategy

Peter R. 1

I like their stores

Well, us Belgians do not merit a real Apple store, but we have premium resellers.

When I decided I may want to buy an iPad I went to their store. I was half expecting desinterested spotty yoofs, like the sales people you get in Mediamarkt, Saturn, FNAC (and things like Dixons i visite when I was in the uK)and other stores that sell electronics, the sort that don't really know what you're asking and know even less about the products they earn their crust with.

I was pleasantly surprised to find a store where everything was not only in stock bur available for actual physical contact (the products, people), the sales guy knew the differences between the models, knew what they did and what they didn't and how they worked together with other stuff. He even let le eat my icecream while he was explaining to me.

I don't know what monetary value I should put on the environment and how it equates to the price of the product, but I was happy that at least my mood didn't get totally ruined because I happened to need an electronics device.

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America planned to NUKE THE MOON

Peter R. 1

Re: Note on Sagan

You seem to be somewhat confused, and you are ignoring the logic of reasoning.

1. From a philosophical standpoint, believing does not enter into the equasion. My comment is about proof.

2. From a scientific standpoint, you believe someting to be the case, you can go about proving it.

In your case of oxygen, proving or disproving oxygen is toxic is proof in both cases. What Sagan seems to be postulating (from what I read about the man, I never met him) is that absence of proof of non-existance is proof of existance. This is pertinently untrue.

Again, this is not a matter of belief. It is cold hard logic. In the case of the existance of god, the fact that there is no(t yet) a unyfying theory of evolution in it's broadest sense does not equal proof of the existance of a deity.

I am sorry I can not make this clearer to you in a forum post, and I wil therefor shut up about the matter.

You may, of course, believe what you like.

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Peter R. 1

Re: Note on Sagan

Well, I screwed that one up didn't I ? It should've read 'unable to prove god DOESN'T exist'. I still don't like the argument though. Demanding proof of negatives is very unscientific.

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Peter R. 1

Note on Sagan

I've always found him to be a bit schizophrenic in his reasoning.

Especially his argument about atheists being unable to prove god exists due to the lack of evidence has somehow always rubbed me the wrong way. But maybe he was just trying to be funny.

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Apple manufacturers: ARRGH, pesky iThings are impossible to make

Peter R. 1

It makes me wonder...

on what basis the manufacturers compile their bid if both of them now find - and not for the first time - they're not making any money on the contract.

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Belgian finds missus was born a MAN after 19 YEARS of marriage

Peter R. 1

Re: I've just looked at the original article...

Tiny top garments that leave very little to the imagination. Or, in this case, the wrong kind of imagination.

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Peter R. 1

Re: Eh?

Dunno about that. We'll never know the whole story and probably we don't need to. But maybe the bloke wanted kids or something. Thes may put a different complexion on the prejudice argument.

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Peter R. 1

Ah ! We are in the news !

You can always rely on us Belgians for a good tech scoop. Well done lads.

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Exec responsible for Apple iOS map fiasco walks the plank

Peter R. 1

I wonder...

Who's going to be held responsible for the slip in the new iMac delivery. They're pulling out all the stops to give the impression that the machines will be on the shelves this year, but my take is that it's just going to be a token presence. It may well be february before they get any volumes to marked.

Someone (or some more than one) better start going the job ads.

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Where were the bullet holes on OS/2's corpse? Its head ... or foot?

Peter R. 1

We were so disappointed.

OS/2 Was hyped as the new thing that was going to send Windoze to a well deserved grave. It didn't require DOS, it could address a decent amount of memory, It was going to be much faster. It was going to be a true graphical OS, not a shell stuck to a command prompt. It promised the arrival of new and great native versions of WP, 123 and Symphony, Paradox and so on.

When we finally got our hads on it, we had built custom machines for it. 8 megs of ram, a 200 mb HD, grahivs cards with 256K or 512K ram. They were so hot the guys supplying the parts thought we were building the starship Enterprise.

Then came the disappointment. It was horrid to install, crashed every time you went for a pee, and gave you grief if you wanted to install DOS software, which you had to, because the great new native apps never arrived.

After several months of trying to make these boxes work anywhere near reliable enough so we could demo them to clients we simply gave up and returned to MS.

For me, OS2 was the biggest let-down in computer history. I still think it's a shame because it had serious potential. But I guess IBM never saw it as something they could flog to PC users as a product. Triple shame.

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McAfee takes time off blogging to concentrate on being chased by police

Peter R. 1
Happy

Had a good larf...

Read about this disguise business and immediately thought of Clouseau !

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EINSTEIN'S BRAIN had unusual lobes and cortex

Peter R. 1

It is common knowledge...

that a wiz'(z)ar's staff has a knob on the end !

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Author of '80s classic The Hobbit didn't know game was a hit

Peter R. 1

Dragonworld anyone ?

I played something called 'Dragonworld' in what I remember as 1984, but IIRC it was on the Commodore 64. It had quite decent 320 graphics - on colour! - and I seem to remember the parser was quite good, although this might just be a fond memory now surrounded by the mists of time.

I think I'll start looking around for some emulators and dig up all those old classics.

Did you know the original Hawaii 5-0 and Mannix shows are now available on DVD ? I was amazed to discover they were actually in colour too !

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Ten four-bay NAS boxes

Peter R. 1

What is never tested : warranty and service.

I've had a Buffalo BAs sitting on a shelf somewhere for over 2 years. It was bought in a pinh by a colleague in Japan and brought over on a project.

The power supply failed at some point. I have emailed and phoned with Buffalo in three continents, and with their main suppliers an dealers all around, AND I've even posted on their forum, asking to send me a replacement power supply. I have offered to pay for it and the shipping.

I have been given the run around from japan to the US to Europe, and ultimately I've been sent packing. They can not provide me with a replacement PS.

So before you part with your hard earned, take into consideration that there's some things that are never tested in a product review.

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Apple staff call Taiwanese filmmaker an 'idiot'

Peter R. 1

My brain hurts now

If I understand this correctly, Apple has placed an app of sorts on their iStore. A man is complaining that the stuff is HIS IP, but Apple won't remove it because is can not determine if the man is the IP owner.

It therefor follows that Apple can not determine if the person or persons that placed the content in the store are the IP owners either.

So Apple has put stuff in their store but they can not determine where it came from, and refuses to remove it for this very same reason.

Is it me or do they have it ass bakwards ? Does this now mean I can use any of Apples IP as long as I don't know it's their IP ? For instance, as long as I don't know Apple owns a patent for rectangular slab with rounded corners I can sell as many as I want, Ignorance is now an acceptable defene ?

And I'm not even trying to take the piss here. I'm dumbfounded.

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