Feeds

* Posts by Paul Shirley

1361 posts • joined 19 Jun 2009

I need to multitask, but Windows 8's Metro won't let me

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Which would be a fair point if Microsoft hadn't laced Win8 with tripwires to fire up Metro mode with common actions. FFS they deliberately disabled the register hacks that let us lock it into desktop mode, they really are intent on tricking or forcing everyone to get used to Metro as the primary interface.

If it were good they wouldn't need compulsion, desktop would wither on its own.

10
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Yes, even Metro dualtasking is often worse than useless. When I have Eclipse running in debug mode it barely squeezes enough information onscreen in fullscreen 2048x1152 mode.

If I need an external target window open (typically the Android emulator) I want that window stealing the absolute minimum screen area from Eclipse, not some arbitrary large Microsoft decided fraction. If I put it on a 2nd monitor I don't want Metro's piss poor multimonitor support getting in the way either or having to squash or replace the apps pinned there already.

That's just dualtasking. Before I got a smartphone I'd leave just enough of the email client exposed to track incoming mail, put an IM client in a tiny window in a corner, a browser tracking something else and still have plenty of space for several working windows. Now I use the smartphone as a 3rd monitor handling all that crap, maybe Metro is really about getting everyone to work that way as a way to sell Win8 devices ;)

2
1

Galaxy S III pay-monthly tariffs compared

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

"cheaper to stick to a 12 month plan": WTF?

"works out far cheaper to stick to a 12 month plan than it does over a two year stretch"

WTF? That only works if you don't bother using it for the next 12 months. For a 24 month period the Vodaphone 12month contract is the most expensive of all! Hapless users could presumably switch to SIM only for the 2nd 12 months but how many remember to do that and you didn't include that calculation anyway.

Might as well point out if you just buy the phone contract free and never turn it on it's even cheaper!

Bad enough the mobile industry has customers unable to calculate the real price of anything, now the Reg is helping spread the bollocks.

3
1

Free Windows 8 desktop app development is dead

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: DirectX

As long as Xbox360 lives most PC games will support DX9 whatever Microsoft tries.

Win7 broke enough games that it's debatable whether it drove adoption more than discouraged it amongst gamers. Win8 deliberately created incompatibility with existing game libraries would be incredibly risky.

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Thinking that Windows 8 will make a large number of users leave iOS & Android for WP7 (or even Win8) is just as insane as Microsoft apparently expecting Windows 8 to be a commercial success.

There, fixed it.

Never lose sight of what this is about: bludgeoning their way into the mobile and pad markets using their desktop monopoly. Won't it be fun if Metro on the desktop is so annoying it loses them tablet and mobile sales?

4
2
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Lost

Other reports suggest thevlicence terms forbid deploying desktop apps. Too lazy to check which it is but I did grab the ISO for the last release in case I ever need to hack something together.

Realistically I'll probably just use any convenient scripting tool at hand if that happens. Even Java...

1
0

Hands on with Nokia's 808 41Mp camphone

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@Dave's Jubblies

"The 'positive' [for Windows] ones only post in response to your crap."

That's a reflection of how irrelevant the Reg is. The paid shills are too busy actively monitoring influential sites like SlashDot and getting a remarkable number of 1st posts in. Sometimes managing 100's of words in mere seconds... no funny business going on there ;)

The Reg has to make do with amateurs pushing the party li[n]e.

3
2

Google in the clear on Oracle patents

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: copying for interoperability is fair use

I think this is Googles weakest defence. Interoperability exceptions were meant to prevent product lockin, by letting programmers create interoperable programs and components end users rights are protected. In Android the interoperability with the Java stack is partial and more about leveraging programmers experience than preventing lockin (or lock out).

Alsup asked questions that suggest he's not convinced by the argument. Although it ultimately didn't convince the jury Oracles incessant whining about 'fragmenting Java' has some truth - if you don't supply the whole environment how can you claim interoperability as a defence?

I expect when Alsup finally rules it won't be the blanket 'APIs aren't copyrightable' most expect. A precedent that confirms this as a matter of fact for a jury decide seems plausible.

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@mpup

The arithmetic's not quite that simple. Googles lowest licence offer was $30mil+other goodies, if Sun had asked for 50 or possibly even $100mil for the terms Google wanted they'd have got it.

Google would save money (not needing Dalvik, not having to subset Harmony) but would still end up paying as much to overlay Android over J2SE as over Harmony. J2SE is better for smartphones than ME but still not mobile ready. The major advantage would be launching with a mature, optimising JVM. Well, they launched quickly enough anyway and the poor initial Dalvik performance hasn't hurt sales visibly. I think the cost/benefit totals closer than you think, but that's just an opinion ;)

The price of a licence you can't buy is irrelevant though. We now know the price of the terms Google *needed* was $7.4bil+ in a bidding war to buy Sun. About $6bil of that for Java IP it appears is worth much less following this trip to court!

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

"I suspect it would have been cheaper to settle"

The licence Sun wanted to offer was worthless for Android, far from saving Google time and money it would have crippled Android - they'd have ended up rewriting most of it in some other language and just bolting a worthless Java module in.

...but let's pretend they could have got a licence worth having. Given the amount Google offered Sun for the licence they wanted that's probably more than they spent on this case. In BS&Fs previous copyright crusade (SCO vs IMB,HP,Linux) they successfully ran up huge discovery costs for IBM, that didn't happen this time. A combination of there being less to discover in a younger product/company and not having an idiot judge prepared to impose ridiculous burdens on the defendant. And perhaps having learned from BS&Fs previous outrageous abuse of process ;)

3
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Probaby not too important from Oracle's point of view

""Before this trial started, it had already become crystal clear that the copyright part of the case was going to be the important one, not the patents"

By the time the *trial* started it had become obvious the patent case was already lost, with 5 already invalidated, 1 provisionally invalid, 1 remaining. Those 7 patents were the 7 strongest cherry picked from the 50 odd patents Oracle started with. Given the blatant bullshit Oracle had its experts spew in the patent phase they had to know they were fscked. BS so wrong it made the bollocks Google also issued actually look correct.

So of course the copyright addon became the significant issue, the patent case fell apart.

But remember: the copyright claims were promoted largely *because* the patent claim evaporated long before reaching trial. No deliberate choice, no actual confidence outside BS&F the claims were valid, just reaction to a collapsing case.

Based on past observation David Boies brought it ready made (it's the SCO casework) and the patent claims were then little more than an excuse to dive into Google internal documents trying to fake up infringement. Infringement they couldn't even fabricate this time, unlike their careful rearrangement of Linux source code in the SCO debacle.

This started when Steve Jobs issued threats of a cabal of patent holders preparing to sue Android into oblivion. Whether Larry Ellison was part of that conspiracy or just jumped on the bandwagon hardly matters. They decided to hit Google+Android and didn't let the facts interfere with the plan.

8
1

'Dated and cheesy' Aero ripped from Windows 8

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

"not tried it but somehow know it will feel wrong"

I just reached out toward my closest monitor. Finger got to about 1cm away from the screen surface. Do I really have to try anything more to know touch control on it is not usable and likely to cause severe RSI?

I look forward to the lawsuits when the RSI aspects sink in.

1
1
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@ac: "alternate good/bad releases"

The alternate release thing actually started back with Win3.1, after the legally crippled Win2 debacle. It's been pretty damn accurate since then with only a little fudging the release order. Vista fit the pattern far too well but didn't start it.

[Although I personally don't find Win7 much of an improvement on Vista, I find it painful to use every time I have to fix someone's PC install]

2
3
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

"resurrecting the Windows 1... features"

I thought it was Windows 2 that dropped overlapped window support... (at the sharp end of a lawsuit ;)

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

Many of us find Metro fugly, partly because it looks so bloody plain. It's like a visual tranquiliser fighting the stimulant of brash fugly colours. Microsoft have to simplify the desktop UI to a plainer, more metro like style, otherwise users might just choose the prettier desktop version to use over Metro and ruin the whole convergent cross promotional plan.

Maybe they should resurrect the old Win3 look, remembering to disable any window decoration customisation and impose a monochrome look&feel. That might just be enough to drive despairing users to Metro.

9
2

Google snubs Euro watchdog's 'abuse of dominance' claims

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Foundem delusional as usual

When Foundem say "has affirmed Foundem’s complaint," they apparently didn't read the word 'may'. They're also deluded if they think this is going to work out quickly or well for Foundem.

This reads like the EU have nothing concrete yet and want a soft option to avoid having to put real effort in. Google can probably make a meaningless gesture here and carry on with only cosmetic changes. Or force a real inquiry and still walk away largely unaffected.

If Foundem & co believe a flood of work will arrive if only the EU makes it easier to poach Google customers, they haven't understood which shitty end the of market Foundem occupies. Or understood *why* they never show up high in search results, unlike their successful competitors. If I see a vertical search leech in my search results I expect it to be a good one, with results worth looking at. And that ain't a description of these guys.

1
1

UK mobile broadband carriers compared

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Inaccurate and unscientific

In phoneland the only difference between mobile internet and Mobile bb is whether you can tether. It's just product naming.

Deceptive naming but what do you expect from this industry ;-)

0
0

Ten... Qwerty mobiles

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: No Slide outs?

I expected to miss the slide out keyboard when I upgraded my G1 but so far it's been pretty painless. Once you hit 4" screen size onscreen keyboards start comparing well - in portrait mode I can type as fast with 2 thumbs as on the old hard keyboard. Just annoying how much space it wastes on screen and the bad formatting it provokes on web pages.

I'd still like a slider keyboard but it no longer feels essential.

1
0

Microsoft to devs: Don't ruin Win 8 launch with crap code

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Are Microsoft implicitly admitting...

...the 1st clue was a couple of weeks back when they revealed the 3rd Win8 build (forget its name, its the corporate version), with 'sideloading' of Metro apps as an extra feature. Yes, Metro is locked down on the desktop as well as the phones.

7
0

Britain has 10 million twits, tweets Twitter

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

how many are opt-in commercial use?

My twitter account is strictly receive only, mostly gaming release and sales alerts. Wonder if mine counts as active? If twitter over SMS weren't free on my mobile I'd probably not bother though.

0
0

Nokia Lumia 900 WinPho 7 smartphone

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@DrXym: e.g. saying you have 3 new messages

Always makes me laugh when the fans and astroturfers bang on about tiles showing message counts as if that was a good use of so much space. My Xperia doesn't stop at showing a message count on the various mail and sms launch icons, if I put them in a folder it shows the count on the tiny sub-icons on the folder icon. That's 4 possible counter displays in *each single launch icon*.

...leaving more space for widgets with actual information in them ;)

5
0

Google+ dying on its arse – shock new poll

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

not helped by Googles piss poor software and UI

A few of my family signed up specifically for the video Hangout feature but as I've come to expect from the perpetual beta crapware they shovel out, we couldn't get it to work. That wasted hour+ is likely to be the entire lifetime use of G+ for most of them.

I actually signed up voluntarily before that but remain baffled by the cryptic browser UI in it (and Gmail after decades using real email software). Google really need to hire some user facing programmers and designers. I may be unusual in that ;)

As far as I can tell there is ZERO content posted by friends and family in my G+, the couple of news and announcement feeds actually work better over Twitter. Till todays post I'd forgotten I even had G+ - probably the only benefit to signing up is all the nagging messages infesting Google pages go away!

1
2

Samsung sheds light on low-cost WinPho blower

Paul Shirley
Silver badge
WTF?

just crippled enough to annoy

Just capable enough to suck people into buying, crippled enough to make them regret it soon after.

WTF were they thinking with 4Gb storage, the cloud is not a good enough substitute even over WiFi, totally useless with typical 3G reception in most of the UK.

How many people will associate the cut down feature set here with WP7 in general. When you buy a low end Android phone it multitasks poorly - but still does it. It's easy to imagine the performance improvement an upgrade would bring to a feature you've directly experienced.

With this 'beginners edition' of WP7 it's less obvious to casual users what an upgrade brings - unless it's actually so crippled you're compelled to upgrade just to get a useful device - a well used Microsoft strategy on the desktop. Arguably the missing multitasking isn't exactly great in the full version anyway!

I can see a future where this sort of device is the 1st AND last WP phone large numbers of people buy.

3
4

Mozilla and Google blast IE-only Windows on ARM

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Come on, el Reg...

With music hall comedy due Lewis&Orlowski in editor positions what do you expect?

I miss the old reg, where cutting mockery came from people who knew about what they were reporting. The new reg, where unwavering belief trumps observable reality and cheap insults stand in for understanding their target - just seems petty and irrelevant. Certainly not a useful news source any more.

9
1

Java jury finds Google guilty of infringement: Now what?

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Groklaw Bias?

People too stupid to filter through the bias and dig out the underlying truths are too stupid to share an opinion and should just STFU.

Not helped by the lack of understanding of IP and IP law shown by almost every individual working in IT.

0
1
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: It seems simple...but it never is

The doctrines of laches and estoppel stop this sort of trick. Take too long to assert your rights and you risk losing the right to assert them under laches. Estoppel can stop you clawing rights back by withdrawing an offer - this is what 4B is about.

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Don Jefe: Copyright does not require registration.

...but in the US system winning statutory damages does require them to be registered at the claimed time of infringement. Despite Oracles heroic efforts to push the 'call 2600 times while Android starts' line, the only payout left is statutory damages, their own efforts to artificially inflate the total damages having zero rated this one.

2
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

"The jury found Google to be unequivocally guilty of copyright infringement on the major charge"

No. All the jury decided was there was no reason to use jury nullification to ignore the law of the case. Alsup told them to assume API's were copyrightable, Google made no attempt to deny using the APIs. He might as well have left the NO response off the form, it wasn't in play. There only contribution on Q1 was failing to reject Googles actual defence.

'Failing to reject' because that's where the balance of proof now lies when Alsup decides it, he has to find some excuse to reject it, not look for Google to prove it. It's a mess he probably didn't consider and Oracle is screwed whatever happens.

16
1

Partial victory for Oracle in Java case

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

intriguing comment from Law Professor Mark Lemley

Comment near end at http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_20566834/google-oracle-trial-verdict-ruling-copyright-jury-mistrial

He claims the standard of proof for Alsup deciding 1B (Fair Use) is "no reasonable jury would accept fair use". With at least 1 juror voting for Fair Use its hard to argue there could be no jury that would accept 'Fair Use'. Oracle could regret demanding Alsup decides 'fair use' and I won't be surprised if he uses this to dodge the copyrightability question. Either way Google seems to have a guaranteed appeal if they want it.

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: @Ian Trolls-a-lot Gumby

One minor problem with your clean room argument. Google contributed TimSort TO Java, they didn't take it FROM Java or reimplement an existing Java API. They created both versions from the freely usable Python original. There are no clean room issues here, you don't need one to contribute NEW API and source.

You also need to remember why RangeCheck was copied: the implementation was being contributed to Java with the intention of refactoring Java to use the existing internal RangeCheck support. Not removing it in their own copy is simply careless, not the making of a $bazillion fine.

3
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@bean520: copyright attribution system

Probably... except Oracle forgot to check it at the start of the case. That's how we went from 51 infringing packages down to 37 *after* Google showed someone else owned the other 14 ;)

Right there we have proof that being in Java doesn't give Oracle ownership and an admission of that on record.

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Schwartz definetly influenced the jury. Oracle are trying to block him right now

"Although the former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz testified in Google's favor, saying the company never had a problem with the Chocolate Factory's implementation of Java, the jury seems unswayed."

That's not what happened.

They answered YES to 4a: the jury did believe Sun 'never had a problem' or at least told the world there was no problem. Oracle are fighting to keep Schwartz from testifying in the next phase because the jury WERE swayed by his testimony. With the evidence that's since emerged about how official the blog really was they're right to be scared.

4B really is a trick question. Not a ruling, just an opinion for the judge to consider and compared to 4A pretty minor, if only because the burden of proof was on Google to prove it, not Oracle to disprove it. Would have been nice to have but 4A did the damage.

Ultimately, if Oracle don't beg for a settlement before phase 3, the 4A result also applies to the patent claims and can only reduce any payout the jury decides. There are only 2 ways to kill a patent suit, prove you aren't infringing OR get a low valuation on the infringement: looks like Google have a low valuation coming.

Said it at the start, I expect Oracle to spend more than they win. Or put another way, Google saved nearly $7.4bil when they chose not to bid against Larry Ellison for Sun. Sun should have taken the chance to be relevant when they had it, they wouldn't have needed to sell to Oracle if they had.

2
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

On 1A: a better portrayal would be that the judge ticked the YES box on 1A, handed the form to the jury and assumed jury nullification would not be used to cross it out. He didn't give them a choice on how to vote.

It's unfortunate the jury couldn't agree on fair use, it almost guarantees a retrial unless he now rules there's no case to answer at all (AKA APIs aren't copyrightable). It should scare the shit out of Oracle that they couldn't win on the major use Google made no attempt to deny, that it forces a precedent setting ruling the court so obviously wanted to avoid.

5
1

Google took a bath on Android in 2010, judge reveals

Paul Shirley
Silver badge
Flame

Re: Nope

"Android throws a wrench into the works by splintering the development efforts of Java developers into essentially two platforms"

Sadly it's not possible to tell how straight you kept your face typing that bullshit. If you said 'three platforms' maybe I'd play along - counting the multiple incompatible ME profiles as just 1 platform.

At the time Sun decided not to join Google, JavaSE had no compatible UI layer for ME so wouldn't even compile if they needed a UI, get too clever and they still won't more than 5 years on after Sun lumbered off their lazy arses and added Swing to ME.

Sun fragmented their own platform then sat on anyone that tried to unfragment it again with the ME "not mobile" licence restriction. They couldn't even get WORA to work for apps worth using on any version of ME actually deployed.

If you design a language that embeds its own core functionality in libraries, its too late to complain when others believe your libs are essential language features. I can write (and have done it) entire functional apps in C and C++ without any external library support. The design of Java means even if you could compile with no core libs (you can't) there's no way to reach the metal to make your program actually do anything, without using language features embedded in system libraries that Oracle are now bitching about!

4
2

Jury mulls verdict in Oracle-v-Google Java spat

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Oracle Should not Concede

You're betraying a woeful lack of knowledge of US software copyright law. It has evolved exceptions that can be read as recipes for how to copy software and get away with it, if you want to look at it that way. They actually evolved to prevent the chilling effect absolute, unfettered copyright protection would have, principally the ability to lock out competition and unfairly lock in customers, to allow interoperability - which prevents an infinitely fractured market for software (which damages end users).

The issues in this case are not whether Google took Sun IP, it's whether they took more than the law allows, whether they followed the 'recipes' correctly so it was legal to do so, whether Sun pissed away it's own rights to stop them by its own behaviour and a flawed licensing scheme.

Google tried walking on the bleeding edge of software copyright law, this case is testing how well or badly they did. That BS&F had to recycle the invented crap from the SCO fiasco to get as far as a jury should tell you Google did pretty well. Don't confuse actions that seem wrong with actions that are illegal, they aren't always the same.

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge
Coat

working round a loss on SSO

Assuming things like RangeCheck get tossed as de minimis, or at worst get a proportionate fine (ie small in keeping with the de minimis quantity of infringing code):

BS&F's Structure,Sequence,Organisation invention may be surprisingly easy for Google to work around, particularly if they can get delay with an appeal. Easy *because* the VM and classloaders don't really care how that hierarchy is organised or what names are used, only that the symbols in Dalvik bytecode match the symbols in the libraries on the device.

The toolchain already translates compiled Java to Dalvik, a perfect place to perform a lot of symbol remapping. Remap the Java API structures to an arbitrarily organised set of entry points - sorted flat lists would seem most immune to copyright claims and most apps wouldn't notice. But you've just knocked out Sequence and Organisation from the claim, possible Structure. Once you abandon total compatibility it's easy to carry on throwing it away.

Should buy enough time to make more radical changes like completely excising Java if that becomes necessary.

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@+++ath0

"you can't take a Java SE or ME app or even compile it's source code and run it on Android"

I couldn't compile my Java SE game editor build on ME at the time Sun & Google were negotiating. Apparently it's OK for Sun to artificially fragment Java. Today I couldn't guarantee the Swing UI source would compile under ME, Swing support supposedly is there but partial.

At the same time more than 75% of the Java source is shared between my games editor and the Android game build, exactly the same source - this shitty language doesn't support conditional compilation, which normally pushes that shared source above 90% in other languages. Only the UI layer changed - as it would have to since it's doing a different job and there's no point reading sensors my PC doesn't have and a mouse my phone doesn't have!

Some of the tools I use only need a shell to inject command line parameters and an Activity stub to make them launchable on Android. They compile and run quite happily with that. Not a useful thing to do though.

You grossly exaggerate the level of incompatibility and ignore the fragmentation baked into Java itself.

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

@ac: it was so that they could fragment Java

"Interesteing, so the reason that Google copied the API wasn't to allow the Java Program Language to be used for e.g. interoperability it was so that they could fragment Java - perhaps destroy Java completely?"

Then why did Google try so hard to licence Java? Not licence the artificially crippled J2ME crock but real J2SE, with real test compatibility. Android would have become J2ME + Android extras. Extras everyone including Sun would be free to bolt onto Java everywhere.

Sun deliberately fragmented Java with the ME *variants* long before Google came calling. But they crafted a licensing plan to prop up that fragmentation that failed to remember Moores Law, that eventually J2ME would have no technical justification to hide behind.

Sun was offered a way out of their own trap and lacked the vision to take it. They screwed themselves.

4
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: From James Gosling (father of Java at Sun and recent ex-Googler) himself

James Gosling also went on to boast that his job at Sun was making sure all the J2ME implementations stayed compatible. A job Sun & Gosling failed on an epic scale.

Instead of WORA we have companies making money from testing J2ME apps against thousands of different devices for other companies unable to afford their own device library.

Meanwhile Sir Trolls A Lot ponders where Java would be without Android. It would be exactly where it was before Android, sitting almost|totally unused on billions of low end phones, running the OS on none of them. It would be running on no iPhones, no WP7 phones, no Win8 devices and there'd be no Android for it to run on. Java would be dead on mobile.

Gosling shares Suns lack of vision at the time, unable to see past the licence fee for a box tick on the advertising that no-one actually uses because it's not good enough to use. Unable to see that lifting those artificial restrictions could allow so much more. At a time when Apple was quietly creating iPhone and completely discarding Java, Sun & Gosling were intent on selling an ageing crock.

Sun made Java what it is today. A barely relevant mess.

4
1

Now on Freeview HD: Olympic arts channel that's tough to watch

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: Lucky b...

That of course should be 'right click menu'. Can't tell left from right.

It's getting pretty weird now, either they're still updating the site or different vids have different setup. I'm actually seeing controls in windowed mode - but cant click them because the screen layouts borked. In fullscreen the 'show controls' just started working and I have a draggable timeline. Still no option to leave fullscreen though (hitting back a couple of times works).

I think I'll just save the videos and play them in something more competent. Pity the resolution is so low.

0
1
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

At least it seems to work on my PC, though the playback controls are lacking on FF and whatever Webm plugin it's using - tip: pause is on the left click context menu.

Now they just need to get something on there I can be bothered watching.

0
0

Microsoft stuffs $300m into Nook, bolts B&N app to Windows 8

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

The value is in their ebook store more than any IP, especially since their ePub DRM is easy to strip. Microsoft negotiated from a position of weakness - an IP lawsuit about to backfire badly and a huge hole in their ability to implement the already announced Win8 ebook plans.

For a change I doubt they're getting the good end of this deal. Win8 desperately needs the joint venture to be a success.

1
0

Wind farms create local warming

Paul Shirley
Silver badge
WTF?

usual Reg selective reporting

As usual important details missed to provoke the kneejerk reactions and misleading implications.

Lets start with that .72C/decade. That's extrapolated from 2 averages taken 5 years apart, before and after 2K+ turbines were installed. So actually .36C measured and reported. The researchers state that .72C figure should *not* be interpreted as a continuing trend, they believe its a one-off hit. Wonder why that wasn't reported? Wonder why the researchers picked such a misleading way to report it?

It also appears that the effect isn't just 'mostly' on night temperatures, it's almost completely night time only. This is hardly surprising, in daylight solar warming happens on the ground, mixing the air column brings colder air down to ground level which seems a useful cooling side effect to me. Warmer nights aren't necessarily desirable but a hell of a lot less damaging than raising daytime temps.

1
0

Space-cadet Schwartz blows chunks out of Oracle's Java suit

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: API to be assumed as copyrightable

I think it's more subtle than heading off an appeal. Both sides will fight hard for one wwhatever happens anyway, with or without valid grounds.

I think he's trying to avoid setting a precedent on the API copyright issue. Having a hard yes or no is almost certainly the wrong result, needs to be some consideration of specifics in future cases.

1
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Schwartz - bad businessman but Oracle bound by his mistakes

So no comment on Oracles desperate attempt to talk their way out of Schwartzs bombshell, when the lawyers described him as a bad businessman? I really wanted to see a 'yes I was bad but Oracle have to live with my mistakes' response but court reports suggest the smear failed all by itself.

I'm a little puzzled on how going from $6billion (patents+copyrights) to today's starting point of $30-40million for the copyrights is describable as 'halved'. I know the lazier press keep reprinting Oracles $1bil fiction and ignoring the 30-40mil but even that's nowhere near 'halved'!

7
1

Ofcom: The Office of Screwing Over Murdoch?

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

another predictable Orlowski piece

A story with 3 groups of self serving, empire building, sleazy, cheating scumbags is just too easy to project bias onto. Predictably Andrew picked 'big content' as the good guys and everything has to follow from that. He ALWAYS champions 'big content' blind to any nuance or confounding factors.

OFCOMs biggest failing is not their mad empire building, it's their abject failure to get off their arses and actually defend the public. The politicians have been busy bending over for Murdoch for political advantage we've not counted.

There are no good guys here. But we'll settle for bad guys getting the right result for all the wrong reasons. Seems to me this is as close to working as the whole system has ever worked. Without that separation of control between government and QUANGO, the bickering and delays, we'd now have the wrong result for all the wrong reasons. Politicians can at least be shuffled every few years, Murdoch is an untreatable cancer.

23
2

Google wanted Java 'partnership' with Sun

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: to work around Java completely - if only

Their mistake was in NOT working around Java *completely*.

We've seen a lot of horseshit about how much of the Java class lib is required by the language spec when what they really mean is the libs are so crosslinking it's near impossible to separate the actually essential elements from the bulk. However since Google were abandoning it being a Java system they could have dumped all pretence of compatibility and stripped down to minimal compatibility with Sun's Java systems.

Instead they decided to rely on Suns own public statements about how to bypass Java licensing. It's Suns problem that compatibility with their versions of Java was necessarily lost in doing that!

My belief is the choice to stay so compatible with Java (the language) was more determined by the need to use existing toolchains, tools that simply would not work with *any* change to the core libs. Java is that crippled by its own dependence on reflection and having so much language spec embedded in the lib structure. Most depressing is Java output is already translated to Dalvik after compilation and it would be pretty easy to remove those dependencies during that, meaning the Android libs would no longer need to match the structure of Java! So easy, expect that to be done if Oracle win.

Expect to see a lot of time spent this week establishing that Sun operated a bait&switch scheme when pretending to open Java while binding it in a web of control. That Sun didn't pull the trigger for years, showed no sign of doing so and that it's now too late for Oracle to do it.

1
0

Microsoft lobs out first Skype for Windows Phone

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

Re: needs more than just better multitasking support

Johnny Homeuser doesn't need to. The app his provider supplies will talk to the SipManager API for him and it will just work well. End users don't need to know that SIP's integrated to gain the performance benefits. Whereas no depth of knowledge will help them make Skype work better on WP7.

Slightly smarter users might notice they can just enter the account details without installing anything and it will probably work better than the shoddy excuses for SIP software I've tried ;)

0
0
Paul Shirley
Silver badge

needs more than just better multitasking support

Wonder how long it will take Microsoft to realise they can safely build Skype into the core software stack. As a minority market share holder there's no risk of ending up in court answering competition charges.

Until they do that Skype will be too expensive on battery and too unreliable at accepting incoming calls to use, even if Microsoft let it run as a service with enhanced execution privileges. Before Android started adding specific support VOIP apps were pretty flaky and power draining. Better multitasking wasn't enough.

Now that native SIP has migrated right into the core Android OS the power penalty is acceptable (and having an open choice of SIP provider is pretty nice too). Skype on WP still has a long way to go to catch up.

0
0

Oracle v Google round-up: The show so far

Paul Shirley
Silver badge

"Only need to show one"

Go lookup what Googles 'de minimis' affirmative defence means... *amount* of copying *does* matter and 1 case of 9 lines in 15million seems a pretty good candidate for de minimis.

Particularly when the copied function is also a good example of unprotectable code - on grounds that you can't implement it in any functionally different way and that's its function and use is required to fulfil the Sort method contract.

I expect de minimis will cover the test suite files HP smuggled into the tree as well, on the basis they had no actual use or value to Android.

US software copyright law is not as simple as most of you seem to believe. It's messy, looks unfair (multiple ways to get away with copying for instance) largely because it evolved to prevent a whole family of abuses by copyright holders. There's a reason Oracle are trying to create new law here, the existing precedents don't support their claims.

Sun wove a contractual web designed to lockin control of Java but failed to cover all loopholes.

6
0