Just a few days since I opined that "I must get round to reading the imaginary manuals" to my lead...
1884 posts • joined 19 Jun 2009
Just a few days since I opined that "I must get round to reading the imaginary manuals" to my lead...
Making boilers safe is a *maintenance issue* and it's far from solved, we still have deaths and CO monitors.
Given the tiny number of Tesla's, 2 years since the last fire proves very little. We want considerably lower rates for devices meant to ship millions and able to destroy houses.
... For those cheap aluminium batteries we were talking about a couple of weeks ago. Unless Musk has cracked lithium cell degradation rates that 10yr guarantee seems hard to take seriously for a device expected to be continuously cycled.
Not having an explosive that large in my house either!
While G did argue that APIs could not be copyrighted they actually failed to establish that (pending however many appeals it goes through). They only managed a narrow ruling that the Java code they were using wasn't protectable.
MS cloning the services without an expensive trip to court might depend on just how much MS manages to piss off Google before trying it. The current EU shit stirring might already have done the trick.
Special purpose sites like Nextag (and Foundem) are doomed because what they're doing *isn't specialised*. It doesn't take any special knowledge to rank prices from shopping sites, little more than scraping and a day in a real search engine finding the sites to scrape.
Genuinely specialised sites leveraging special skills&knowledge have a future, at least till powerful AI takes over search.
The few that try to add extra value by mashing up other information (like delivery time+cost, reputation etc.) I've found so error prone and incomplete it's hard to actually trust them. At least on general search sites it's credible funding is independent of organic results, however offended you are by advert placement.
"And in any event, the search engine is not installed on PCs, it's selected.":
Strange. I don't remember choosing to install Bing on Win8.1 but I do remember having to tell built in search to stop using it. Just before I uninstalled the Metro apps. Win10 won't even let me disable the steaming POS and desktop search is damn near crippled by it.
I can understand why Nextag are pissed, not so long ago their utterly useless comparison pages popped up in every search for any electrical product. Even if I only wanted the manual or a review. Never once looked like the results were remotely relevant to a uk user. Then they vanished from the top results, a wholly deserved vanishing IMHO.
Another company so reliant on unfairly high rankings they have only lobbying to fall back on when the system caught up with them.
In the overall business that's small enough G could shut down News without even noticing. Not sure how the companies or EU could prevent it, though I'm sure there's plenty of wishful thinking spread around Europe.
Supporting 1080p and actually being able to deliver it are very different. There are very few true 1080 last gen games and many 720p ones actually render at lower res then upscale to 720.
Halo3 is a typical example, XB360 renders 1152x640@30fps vs XB1 1920x1080@60fps. That's 5.625x more pixels for 2-3x the power draw. Better power consumption would be nice but its not getting worse.
"Unbelievably, it went up after yet another loss announcement."
...they noticed Ballmer hasn't tried reclaiming his job, so there's still hope!
If you paid a heavy premium for the Apple brand why would you want to replace the branding?
@strum: "Google Maps didn't get to be top of the pile because it was better than all the rest"
Google maps got to be better because Google invested VAST amounts of money making it better.
You could try arguing that's unfair to smaller competitors who cannot match the investment in servers or mapping but if they couldn't afford to do that they simply couldn't deliver the same level of service anyway. Simply spending money to build *better* product is not abuse, however much it buggers up someone else's business. It's abuse when you spend money only to screw with competition.
Some tasks need scale to do well, that's why we allow large corporations to be large, why we allow monopolies rather than aggressively breaking them up before they do wrong. Maps would seem to be one of them.
"after a time lag where you lap up the gravy"
That's a big flaw in the economic theory. I don't care if the market corrects abuse, harm is occurring in that lag time and that lag can easily stretch to years - even decades if you look at examples like Microsoft. As usual when economic theory hits the messy real world, it falls short.
Regulation is often needed even in a self correcting market and it's needed here to keep everyone honest *today*, not at some unpredictable time in the future.
@LDS "You're saying basically there should be no innovation because people should never change habits"
I'm saying: innovation != improvement and the public get to choose which innovations they want to use, not inventors.
Innovation is great but when it fails to deliver better or more desirable products you need to accept that and try something different, not endlessly bang on about everyone else being wrong. Windows is currently demonstrating how to innovate a product into a worse one, WP innovated itself into irrelevance right from the start.
Some of the hate is a byproduct of the astonishingly aggressive astroturfing Microsoft indulged in right up to ballet quitting. BS of such orchestrated consistency might have influenced the ordinary public to buy, addressed at geeks who'd seen the same gameplan before it was a disaster.
Astroturfing justifiably breeds hate and that spills over onto the product.
The only successful marketing Microsoft managed was getting so many European carriers to hard sell windows phones with contract renewals. That's how my only wp owning friend got lumbered with a phone he's increasingly regretting being talked into taking.
The BBC site isn't even desktop friendly! A twisty maze of passages, all alike, none leading where you expect.
With the increased use of mobiles to view the web it seems a reasonable idea to encourage sites to get mobile friendly. Hard to see any real competitive advantage it increases for G either, every mobile platform gets the 'better' sites whether Android,IOS,WP or something minor.
"we just assume Google search is better"
Many of us *remember* Google Search actually being MASSIVELY better than anything else and see no point switching to an unfamiliar alternative while G search remains competitive. What's really degraded G search down the years is persistent attacks from SEO, given the relentless gaming and cheating it's a miracle search works at all. But other search engines are at least as degraded.
I don't miss the days aggregators and meta comparison sites regularly managed to hijack entire pages of results till the link farm banhammer hit them. Some of the loudest complainers are really whining about their scuzzy SEO efforts no longer being tolerated. I say fuck'em, they just waste my time.
...is Foundem really won't like the result, whatever happens, they still won't have a product anyone wants to use and no amount of fiddling the search results will change that.
Trying to 'kill' your competition is *not illegal*, but the methods used may be. That's true even for (near) monopolies, we just tend to pay little attention until a monopoly forms and allow them to do much less.
It's not yet decided if Google did more than was allowed at the time they did it. It won't be a politician deciding that with Microsoft funded campaigning ringing in their ears.
Well... the settlement discussions last year did seem somewhat focussed on ensuring paid ads would retain prominent positions on G search results. Quite how Foundem thinks they can afford to buy those positions is a mystery however.
Since 'fixing' the algorithm seems off the table, Foundem's best bet is buying ads. The good news for them is it will be a fair contest for those valuable slots from now on ;)
"You're confusing the total number of acts with the total number of participants. Elementary logical failure."
or more likely, the willingness to perform is higher than success rates in men, lower in women.
Yes, bloody annoying. They steal valuable storage so the system partition is big enough for the crapware, then updates end up using the user partition anyway. And there's not much chance of recovering the wasted space even rooted.
Install packages can happily flash user space, there's not technical reason they have to abuse system space like this.
...except they haven't fixed the desktop yet. I don't believe they're even trying to fix what's broken in Win10's UI. Won't stop them bringing the same pain to mobile though...
Am left wondering: they shrank to Start Screen, bolted it onto the classic desktop and called it the return of the Start Menu (it's not). Will they do the same to WP and give us a Start Menu\Screen so small no-one can read it? I won't be surprised if it happens ;)
@ScottME and I see you're missing the point that half the goto commenters make - that sometimes the GOTO simplifies programme structure, sometimes massively.
I strenuously avoid goto more because of the historical behaviour of compilers, treating the branch and it's target as barriers, neatly disabling most compiler optimisations. Today's compilers handle it better but still aren't perfect and it's used so little they have no incentive to improve that. Most programmers don't need to worry about that level of performance.
I quite like Java for the sheer speed of 'recompiles', something I miss badly every time an unlucky header change forces a 40min C++ recompile on the current project (we inherited this mess and it's too tangled to fix). But I did miss the astonishing expressive power of C++, Java is dumbed down to very few choices and the semantic differences with C++ are a constant annoyance.
I find myself wondering how to elegantly express ideas in C++, compared to wondering if what I'm trying is even possible in Java - it takes the joy out of programming. The Java is probably more productive if you aren't working on extremely high performance applications though ;)
@AMBxx ...and whichever scum get in we desperately need some of their election promises to be broken. Every time.
If there was a 'hung parliament' option on the voting form I'd use it, keep the bastards from pretending we voted for their batshit insane policies because they bundled them with less unpalatable ones than the other side.
As an occasional game designer my position has always been that you're buying a licence to play my *content* and the playback tech is secondary but covered. Resell my content and I'll sue you. Resell my playback tech, I'll sue. Keep the content and playback tech working, I'll try to avoid paying you for your hard work but you're safe.
But publishers create very little, own a lot. And want your money more than they want to accept any obligation to past customers. They want to rent content, not asign you any rights. A pox on them.
Time to remember the part Here played in pushing Nokia to Windows rather than Android. In a small way (compared to the total mismanagement) that obsession with the mapping crown jewels killed Nokia as a mobile supplier.
Even now they've allowed it onto android the app can be a PIA to use.
More work to distract them from creating a usable customer service setup.
... although that presumes they have any intention of doing customer service, it feels like they invested more resources in selling overpriced addons than anything else. Not a company I would trust to get an OS right before much pain has been suffered.
@Lee D: all true for portable uses but you ignore the mention of grid storage. High energy density is less important than not blowing up/burning easily, long lifetime and low cost. A stack of these sitting in garages or cupboards soaking up PV panel output would pretty much solve the intermittency problem. Could go a long way to fixing it in wind power, which aren't short of space to pile up batteries.
This isn't a replacement for lithium cells, more suitable for displacing lead acid. You wouldn't put them in your car but might put them in the garage to charge that car.
Can't disable those permissions (without rooting) but its not hard to take the hint and just not install any of that suspicious crapware, when the installer warns you. I can't remember any app that asked for blatantly unnecessary permissions so useful or tempting it was with worth ignoring that warning.
Unfortunately the world is full of stupid people that do ignore those warnings, do install complete crap and there's no good way to stop them doing it. Bit of a miracle infection rates aren't 50%+.
That's a huge part of the problem, a substantial fraction of shipped DAB are in cars or used in cars and high quality is pointless in most of them, most of the time. That's a powerful disincentive to bother upping bitrates or risking DAB+, the users with least alternatives are the ones least likely to notice an improvement.
Fixed locations are similarly affected, if your FM, DVB or IP is seriously bad there's no pressure for DAB to do much better. If it's not bad there's even less reason to use DAB at all.
DAB service providers got away with a barely tolerable service when they had no competition and still have too little competition in key market niches to improve their offer. Alternatives have now shut them out of most niches and that can only get worse. It's a dead tech.
"You have a very good point, but that is not what Tezfair was talking about."
What he described was reducing what the *power meter read*. For the tubes it's unlikely there was a matching real power reduction and who needs a smart meter to tell them low power bulbs will reduce consumption?
Useful in the same way a placebo is, just there to remind you to actually replace and turn off powered stuff. But that means they might as well loan people cheap power meters for 3 months instead of mugging them for smart meters (and doing it every time they try to change suppliers).
It looks very like the knobend might have got away with it if he'd kept his mouth shut. No sign the producer was going to report the incident, though it's hard to believe it wouldn't have hit the newspapers and forced the issue anyway, too many people witnessed it. I have to assume the knobend worked out he wasn't going to get a "jim'll fix it" free pass this time without heroic efforts, so he shopped himself.
Not heroic enough. Oh... Supposedly he did try the groveling apology... Didn't bother doing it publicly where it might have made him look less like a sacked dickhead.
Wow, you're right, computers do indeed run programs. Some of those programs interpret scripts. Some of them were interpreting scripts long before the 80's.
I also remember using more descriptive terms like OS,game & application back in the 70's more often than 'program'. We were still arguing about the correct spelling of that one back then. 'Script' had to wait for the 80's... I wrote a lot of scripts building data for games back then. Didn't right many 'programs'...
Let's try to remember: as a very rough&ready approximation, publisher!=content creator. Even where they fund creation it's often more like dealing with a loan shark than mutually beneficial.
It looks worryingly like he's spent more time with publishers than actual creators, yet those creators far too often need protection from publishers more than from pirates. Little chance of positive change then ;(
..yet the majority of CM users first action is installing the Google software that so offends you! One of the earliest things CM had to do was negotiate with Google to ensure users could continue to get the Google core stuff.
Bloated and intrusive, yes. Still doesn't seem to worry normal users at all. The outrage has been manufactured and grossly exaggerated so far.
Quite a lot of us that have used CyanogenMod started trusting them a lot less when it went commercial. I moved away from pure CyanogenMod before that, device support was patchy and all the interesting things were happening in other forks.
With Murdoch onboard, think I'll be avoiding it from now on.
"What on earth are these smart meters meant to achieve?"
They're meant to allow gas suppliers to sack all their meter readers, low paid workers so my small share of the wage reduction will never cover the cost of installing the meters. The companies involved will turn a profit though, so that's alright with politicians sucking at the corporate teat.
...and nothing I've seen to date convinces me they will achieve any useful reduction in energy use. I'll vote for keeping a few more folk employed.
I didn't read anything suggesting this is more than feature query support in the article.
Android supports runtime permission and api presence checks. The problem is few programmers use them or deal with unexpected errors gracefully, I cant see them doing any different on Windows. Unless 'API Contract' involves the user and becomes widespread in practice we'll continue assuming the permissions we asked for are what we have. It's a compatibility wrecking change - again, don't see any suggestion of that in the article. Be nice to have as a user but lazy programmers (or plain malicious ones) will carry on ignoring it.
Or maybe all it means is, when I call an API and it doesn't instantly crash, the call actually worked? Unlike the empty stub functions Microsoft so loved inserting without warning in my past encounters with Windows programming ;)
Indeed. It's an ancient idea that dates right back to the first GUI's and I can't remember any layout manager that does does it particularly well without some programmed assistance.
Even if the MS effort works better than anything before it, they'll inevitably bind in the the look&feel choices their designers want to inflict on us. We could easily end up with apps that look equally ugly on all formats - great auto-layout but still the wrong result!
I doubt the days of supplying multiple layout files to help nudge layout in the right direction for formats are over, even with the woefully dull 'Modern' look&feel.
Unfortunately the native SIP support seems to be optional, it came and went at random as I replaced firmware. I don't remember it ever working with my sip provider on my last phone in any case and I can't find any sign of it on my LG G2.
Luckily CSipSimple has worked reliably and integrates with the normal dialer.
You're assuming the us *believes it needs* German cooperation. They've shown no hesitation to spy on allies to date or lie about it in public.
In any case the overriding concern is to ensure no one else ever dares leak their misbehaviour. Only fleeing to a country able to obliterate the US and run by a leader that might actually do it stopped the chase this time.
One thing we learned from the Win8 fiasco is how determined 10's Microsoft is to impose change on Windows look&feel. So desperate to become relevant on mobile, they ignored the sheer ugliness of the resulting desktop, ignored public feedback and we've recently heard insiders claim they ignored 80% unfavourable feedback from their own employees.
They tried so hard not to look like IOS or Android and succeeded. Like or loath it, Googles flat icons look good (but are so cryptic I struggle to use the apps), IOS at least looks well drawn (in a childs toy way). Microsoft just look amateur and lacking in visual cues.
While the functional parts of Win10 are still in flux, the UI is heading in only one direction. It remains to be seen if enough pressure can be applied to force change. My bet is they'll need catastrophic take up of Win10 upgrades before that happens. Which means I'll be risking the security of Win10 with even more 3rd party fixes, I'm already running multiple UI hacks to make 8.1 acceptable :(
Very wrong, it's pretty clear they're fuglyfying at least the icons and if we don't comment on that hard and often that's what will ship. I hope someone is saving the old icon resources right now ready to hack them back in over this eye bruising mistake.
I can live without pretty but nothing needs to be this pointlessly fugly and waiting won't magically make it look better. Some things need stomping on fast and vigorously, Microsoft still aren't good at listening.
@Steve Todd:"AND communicates with the fuel cell pack at the same time"
Now explain why that's A: not obvious, B: not required to fulfil it's function (how else would you detect fuel level?). Both are grounds for invalidation.
gotes:"A few years down the line you find that less and less apps are supported"
What actually happens is Google removes a permission or 2 with each release, borks up some other support (usually claiming 'it was never meant to work that way') and generally breaks existing apps. Some apps will be fixed, some won't. In some ways it's better to *not* upgrade Android devices, my old Xperia never performed properly after upgrading past Gingerbread.
But the poor manufacturer update support will be a massively more dangerous problem for this market. I can afford to store no sensitive information on my phone, I have a more secure PC for that. These devices are going to be the only computing device for many and handling sensitive data. And they won't be secure enough.
My wife's Linux box comes in and out of sleep mode in seconds and isn't tied to anyone's cloud. Think I'll skip crippling it with cloud based crapness. Oh, I turn my PC off when it crashes, start:stop time isn't something I work about, Microsoft's inability to have working sleep mode on so many desktops does Anjou me.
512mb ram was already a problem for universal apps, most of us aren't going to risk dealing with floods of complaints when resource heavy apps fail on under specced devices. We'll just continue writing for desktop mode and leave universal for toy apps.
Luckily for Microsoft most users only use toy apps on their low end devices, just a pity their strategy will create a further dumbed down PC experience. As if the metro fiasco wasn't enough damage.