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* Posts by GregC

230 posts • joined 6 Jul 2009

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A scanner, darkly: Master data-miner Google tweaks terms of service

GregC
Happy

Re:you know what Google and commentards say about downloading from untrusted sources....

Yes - don't do it.

Happily as a long time, very happy user of ABP I consider their own website to be a trusted source, and if I visit it on an Android device I get a big button that lets me install it from there.

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That's it, we're all really OLD: Google's Gmail is 10 ALREADY

GregC

Re: Gnashing of teeth moving away from Notes

If a similar move was announced at our place there would be a party in the street!

It's the single most hated piece of software in the company. Even SAP doesn't get the same level of abuse...

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Google wearables: A solution looking for a rich nerd

GregC

Re: What's the big deal with charging every day?

I have no problem with charging my phone every day - I get to work, plug it into my laptop and leave it there until I need it. That's fine, if I wasn't charging it then it would still be sat on my desk.

The problem with a smart watch by comparison is that in normal daily use it should be on my wrist, but if it's charging then I'm not wearing it and it's therefore largely useless as a watch. Which is a shame, as I actually really like the look of the Motorola offering.

The other problem is price - as a piece of convenience tech I get it, but it's not worth any more than about £50 to me, and I would be surprised if any of these were less than double that, more likely 4 times.

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Why can’t I walk past Maplin without buying stuff I don’t need?

GregC

Yup, Maplin syndrome

Although my affliction is less severe - I am able to walk past if I am disciplined about it.

However if I do go in it's game over. Money will be spent, on something I will never need and will probably stop working within hours, or days at best.

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Woz he talking about? Apple co-founder wants iPhones to run Android

GregC

When/what device was the last time you used Android?

What you're describing sounds like the first Android device I had, a Galaxy S2 running Gingerbread - compared with an equivalent iPhone at the time the UI definitely felt slightly sluggish.

The Nexus 4, 5 and 10 that I've had since then on the other hand are every bit as quick and smooth as any iPhone I've used.

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Globe grabbin,’ sphere slammin’, orb-tossin’, pill poppin’... Speedball

GregC

Re: Daley Thompson & joysticks

Like, I'm sure, many others I discovered that when playing Decathlon with an Atari joystick the most efficient method was palm of hand on top of joystick, and waggle.

Shortly after that I discovered that as a 14 year old boy, explaining that a blister on the palm of your right hand was joystick related was, well, interesting....

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GregC

SB2 remains one of my all time favourites

It just had that elusive something in the gameplay, where everything gels together just right. The best was a league season in two player - you got to cheer your mate on when he was playing, then do your level best to beat the crap out of each other when the head to head fixture came up.

I would get lost in a fog of nostalgia at this point, but happily I still play it every now and then on the Vita. Hasn't got the 2 player appeal these days, but it's still an absolute blast. And "Ice Cream! Ice Cream!" still puts a smile on my face, especially when it's during a break because I've successfully knocked out the opposition centre forward.

Great, great game :)

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Gmail falls offline, rest of Google struggles on: NO! Not error code 93!

GregC

Re: Just the social aspects?

The Youtube Android app was reporting 503's earlier, though it seems to have recovered now. Gmail and plus still FUBAR for me though.

Oh well, as they used to say on the telly - go out and do something less boring instead!

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My name is Dabbsy and I am an EMAILOHOLIC

GregC

A colleague found it strange when I told him I've got 6....

Turns out that's not many after all :)

Work, hotmail.com (spam bucket, used for free wifi and anything else that asks for an unnecessary email addy), hotmail.co.uk, gmail, yahoo (second spam bucket) and the one my ISP gave me. At some point I've probably used each of them to create an account for something or other, the forgotten password process consists of typing each address in turn until one of them gets recognised...

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Keeping warm in winter the el Reg way: Setting a NAS box ON FIRE

GregC
Coat

Re: hit the thing with a semi

Was this the bit with the wieners?

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Best budget Android smartphone there is? Must be the Moto G

GregC

Re: I no longer know which side of the argument The Register is on

That's probably because El Reg itself doesn't particularly take a side. I quite enjoy the fact that Orlowski and Taylor have such opposing viewpoints, and are (it appears) not only allowed but encouraged to air them.

A bit of editorial freedom is no bad thing, imo.

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GregC

Re: Why?

@AC 17:27 - from the article:

you are stuck with either 8GB or 16GB – around 5.5GB and 13.5GB, respectively, after the system has had its share.

Not 3...

@Andy Prough - if fuzz had actually said the 8Gb version was not enough for them then fair enough. Given that the actual comment was:

Also the 8GB version should be ignored, for almost anyone that is going to be too little storage

(emphasis mine) then I'd say the responses have been entirely appropriate.

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XBOX ONE ROUNDUP-of-the-ROUNDUPS: Everything YOU need to know

GregC

@ Aristotles slow etc.....

I'd go further. For me there's a compelling reason to just stick with the PS3 - GT6 comes out in a few weeks, and a new GT will keep me busy for a looong time. There's also plenty of play time left in GTA5 for me, add in Tearaway this Friday on the Vita, and I've got more games to play than I have time to play them.

Very content to let the early adopters beta test the new machines, and get one in a year or 18 months when there are some games that I actually want. Or not, if there aren't.

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GregC

1.3 Gb day one patch!?!

It's become a standing joke around our office that every new bit of kit seems to require a day one patch these days, but 1.3Gb? Seriously? Is it a whole new OS or something?

On my "broad"band I'd be about a day waiting for that sucker to download.

Only yesterday I was having a heated discussion with someone about the whole "fuck it, publish - we can always patch it later" mentality that's everywhere now. Drives me mad.

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Google's Nexus 5: Best smartphone bang for your buck. There, we said it

GregC

Re: @Lloyd cheap and nasty

I haven't played with the camera at all yet but what you're saying is consistent with just about everything else I've read. The general opinion I've seen seems to be that the problems are in software rather than hardware - hopefully that's the case, and Google will fix the camera app.

It's a shame, as the scuttlebut before release suggested that we were going to finally get a Nexus with an OK camera.

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GregC

@Lloyd Re: cheap and nasty

Personally (and it's all subjective) I'll take the rubberised back and sides of the 5 over the glass back of the 4 any day. Nicer to hold, doesn't slip off any surface that's more than a degree off horizontal, and not likely to scratch easily. The camera housing does look a bit odd, it's also slightly magnetic so I wonder if there are some kind of lens accessories in the pipeline or something.

Agreed on the screen though, it really is a stunner.

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GregC

Re: Does it do USB OTG?

Yep.

The relevant app doesn't work on KitKat yet, should be fixed over the weekend apparently.

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GregC

Re: Signal

I can't speak for voice (I hardly ever make calls on my "phone" these days) but I'm finding the data signal is significantly improved on the N5 compared to the 4, particularly indoors. On the 4 I used to get abour 4Mbit download at my desk at work, and 7-8 at home in the living room. Both those numbers have more or less doubled since I got the 5.

Either the phone has a much better radio/aerial arrangement than it's predecessor or 3 have significantly upgraded their masts round my way over the weekend...

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GregC

Re: MicroSD slot?

The N5 does support USB OTG. Nexus Media Importer doesn't currently work on KitKat but should be fixed by the 10th, according to the developer. NMI provides read/write capability (no root required) to FAT/FAT32 formatted media, and read only access for NTFS.

All that said, since I got my N10, and NMI, I've needed it precisely zero times. It has come in handy on quite a few occasions though.

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Microsoft plugs Xbox One consoles into its cloud - what could go wrong?

GregC

Re: I hope so

The day I can no longer buy (off the shelf, with a single, easy cash payment) a video game and play it 100% offline, I will very literally stop buying games.

This. 1000 times this.

I don't play online myself, but following the unfolding debacle of GTA Online has been just the latest reminder of the reality of the Magic Cloud That Will Do Everything.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 3: Once, twice, three times - a Very Large Phone™

GregC

Re:Sounds like you want a N900.

Can't speak for the original poster, but I do - or rather, I want an up to date equivalent. Make it around Nexus 4 size & power and I'd be a very happy camper.

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Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite: 13.3-inch slimline notebook with a secret

GregC

Interesting and then disappointing....

Started off thinking this could be a nice replacement for my ageing netbook, but then saw the price, OS and battery life...

If they did one without the touchscreen (and passed on the relevant saving in the price)*, either with Win7 or no OS, I might be interested. If they put a better battery in too they'd probably have a sale.

* This is something I'm getting increasingly annoyed by. I don't want a touchscreen on a laptop/netbook, and I don't want to pay a premium for something I'm not going to use. At the moment I'm struggling to find anything to replace the aforementioned netbook.

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Congrats on MP3ing your music... but WHY bother? Time for my ripping yarn

GregC

Re: I feel your pain

If you have a decent independent photo lab in your area, that can still deal with film, they should be able to scan your slides onto CD/DVD at decent quality, and do it several times faster than you will manage at home.

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New iPhone sells out, millions in hands of lucky fans, Cook cock a hoop ...

GregC

Re: It's hard on the Fandroids at the moment, they have very little hope to cling on to

This comment intrigues me. Hope of what exactly? The Android user base continues to grow, and the OS itself continues to mature and improve (though just as with iOS we do seem to be reaching a point of diminishing returns...). *

* not a particular 'droid fan here, however it is the least worst option at the moment. I'd love to see a credible alternative emerge.

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BT doles out measly 2GB to customers in Dropbox-alike BT Cloud

GregC

Stick Ubuntu One on the list too

Just another service offering 5GB plus referral bonuses.

BT offering does look pretty poor.

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Xbox One launch date REVEALED - and it's on the 360's birthday

GregC

People not wanting to take the step forward into the digital age has put us back 10 years.

The problem is that what MS were trying to do, aside from the blatantly anti-consumer attempts to destroy (or at least take control of) the second hand market, required an internet that for large parts of this country, and much of the rest of the world, may well still be 10 or more years away. Games on Xbox One & PS4 are likely to be 30GB+. I wouldn't fancy downloading those on my shitty connection...

The other problem, of course, is that when the outcry came MS decided to throw the baby out with the bathwater. I can think of several ways they could have implemented most (not all, admittedly) of the things they were planning without requiring an always-on connection.

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GregC

I know that MS backed down a bit, but where does it stand now in relation to the PS4 on those issues?

They backed down more than a bit, I think the only thing they haven't backed down on is the bundled Kinect with every console.

The fact that they tried to pull all that crap in the first place is enough for me to steer well clear though.

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Google's Street View cars venture inside TARDIS

GregC
Thumb Up

Re: If you're using the beta google maps....

Thanks muchly. Have an upward thumb for your troubles :)

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GregC
Unhappy

Re: Broken for me.

Using the new maps beta by any chance? I am, and it's broken for me too.

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Xbox 180: Microsoft scraps mandatory Kinect policy

GregC

@ AC 16:30

As a driving sim, in my opinion, GT is the best you'll get on a console. As a "fun" racer (and I'd regard most of the games you list as arcade racer rather than sim) then you'll probably want to get your kicks elsewhere (Driveclub looks pretty good in that category).

Just as well really - $deity knows when GT will actually make it to PS4....

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GregC

@ Babbit55

Problem is, if you want a next gen console you have two choices - Microsoft or Sony. Both have previous when it comes being dicks of the highest order. The difference right now is that Sony at least seem to be aware that they have royally fucked up in the not too distant past, and seem to be making an effort not to make the same mistakes again.

MS, on the other hand, appear to have based the original feature set of the XB1 on the Bumper Book of Things People Don't Want, then used a marketing team that thought the idea was to sell as few units as possible, and are now continuing to backpedal frantically in an effort to recover preorders. I suspect that their biggest problem now is that people have seen what they tried to do, and it's going to take them a long time to recover from that.

As for double dipping Sony will be charging to use online services with the PS4 too

Interesting comment, you know this how? Given that Sony have specifically said the likes of Netflix etc will not require a Plus subscription, and neither will their look-at-me game recording service. They only need to look at MS to see what kind of backlash they will get if they break those promises...

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Xbox One users will have to pay extra for Skype and gamer-gratifying DVR

GregC

Re: No-one picked up on...

Have you even been reading the comments? It's come up in at least 2 or 3 of the different threads, although your wording is not entirely accurate. FYI, PS4 will require a PSN+ subscription for most online gaming, which includes other benefits. They aren't just "charging $50 for multiplayer".

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GregC
Big Brother

If you want Kinect, the XBox package looks decent value.

If you don't want Kinect - tough shit, pal. Not only are you paying for it anyway, the console won't work without it plugged in and listening.

PS4 looks a much better proposition to me.

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GregC

Re: Any word on if Sony will do the same?

Nope, they won't.

Gameinformer piece on the subject

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GregC

Re: THAT's where you're pointing the article?

No - Sony are not "starting an identical subscription service". They are making a PS+ subscription mandatory for most* online play. That's not great, though the PS market at large seems to have looked at it, decided that the subscription offers good value, and given a collective "meh, ok" response.

As far as anyone knows, and some of this has been confirmed by Sony, a PS+ sub will not be required for all the other online features. By contrast it looks like a Gold sub will be pretty much required if you want to do anything more than just play games on the Xbox**

Me, I won't be getting either at launch. I still haven't managed to play all the games I've already got.

* Apparently free to play games will also be free to play online

** I must be getting old, I still actually consider a games console to be a thing to play games on

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GregC

Yeah, or they could, you know, use the local HDD to store the footage by default and back it up online (it's not a fucking "cloud", it's just servers) if you have a whydon'tyoufuckmeintheasswhileyou'reatitgold subscription.

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Brit Skylon spaceplane moves closer to lift-off

GregC
Thumb Up

Re: I'm still waiting for HOTOL.

Skylon pretty much is HOTOL, or at least it's spiritual successor - from the wiki article you linked:

In 1989, HOTOL co-creator Alan Bond formed Reaction Engines Limited (REL) which has since been working on the Skylon vehicle intended to solve the problems of HOTOL.

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Win XP alive and kicking despite 2014 kill switch (Don't ask about Win 8)

GregC

Re: And it's still being sold!

You'll almost certainly find that the version of Windows on that system is XP Embedded, which is supported through to 2016, and which MS are still happily selling.

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So, who here LURVES Windows Phone? Put your hands up, Brits

GregC

There was a time when Nokia had over 50% UK market share and 80% of those customers said that they would never buy another brand of mobile phone.

I was one of those people, until Elop killed MaemoMeego off and made the switch to WinPhone. I wouldn't touch a Nokia with a shitty stick now...

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Microsoft to Google: Please remove us from internet

GregC

Re: Too early for conclusions...

for all we know $someone could also have tricked LeadID into relaying a bogus request; which would tell us more about this organisation than Microsoft

They appear to be a company that makes a living sending DMCA takedowns. That tells me all I need to know about them really.

Parasites.

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Google kicks off Android 4.3 updates for Nexus devices

GregC

Re: Nexus 10 wifi fix?

Based purely on my own Nexus 10 - what "abysmal wifi performance"?

Mine hasn't been perfect, nothing ever is, but I've never had a problem with wifi connectivity on it.

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Oh please, PLEASE bring back Xbox One's hated DRM - say Xbox loyalists

GregC
Stop

Re: I agree wholeheartedly

I'd actually like to point out, I agree with the 'fuck the second hand market' stateent. Especiall here in the UK.

No, I don't agree with "fuck the second hand market". "Fuck the rip off retailer second hand market", on the other hand, absolutely - this :

Buy a game for £40, next day trade it in because it was so damn short. Get £10 back, go in the next day, my game is on sale for £38. £2 less than retail.

This, I agree, is ridiculous. But we, the consumers, are partially to blame for allowing, indeed encouraging, it. If you want to sell a game then do it direct - on ebay, in a shop window (remember those days....) whatever. That way you might get £25 instead of a tenner, and the second hand buyer doesn't get ripped off either.

And if the game studios and publishers want to discourage the second hand market, they could try making the games worth keeping hold of. Make it good enough that I don't want to sell it, and guess what - I won't sell it. There's a fair few games that I haven't sold, because I still go back to them. There's a lot more that got sold because they had no replay value.

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Google loses Latitude in Maps app shake-up

GregC

Re: Offline maps gone... or not?

The big difference is that the current maps app lets you choose areas to cache - so if I know I'm going to be in the middle of Snowdonia tomorrow I can download the map I'll need in advance. As I understand the new system it will only download the local maps for wherever I am at the time.

Which isn't really much use, IMO....

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Seven snazzy smartphones for seven sorts of shoppers

GregC

Re: When did I get so old...

The only one? Almost certainly not.

I'm the polar opposite to you though - for me my "phone" is basically a highly portable computer with almost-anywhere internet access that has the bonus of being able to make the odd call (for which it works just fine). Each to their own really.

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Windows 8.1: 'It's good for enterprises, too,' says Redmond

GregC
Thumb Down

@AC 09:05

By the same token - someone who spent time with W8, learnt how to use it, then decided for himself that the incremental improvements that there are simply aren't worth the loss of continuity and schizophrenic UI automatically gets labelled as being "part of the groupthink".

Might want to check your pot/kettle interface.

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Microsoft talks up devices, Windows 8.1 at developer shindig

GregC
FAIL

Listening? Really?

I'll keep this short. Well, ish.

For as much as I want Windows at all, which isn't that much these days, 7 is fine. 8 is broken.

I only need Windows at work, and when I'm there I need to work. Not fight with shit that gets in my way. In the interests of not having to deal with crap tomorrow note the following:

Yes, I have used Win8 during the preview phases

Yes, I have worked out how to use it

No, it's not an improvement on 7. Incremental improvements in startup time and a better copy dialog are not enough to make up for destroying context every time I press the windows key/click on the ALL NEW Start button.

Now, that's all fine - MS owe me nothing, and I owe them nothing too. Newsflash though - I am perfectly capable of giving them no money, and not using their shiny OS. I can go to pcspecialist and get a machine with Win7 (by default no less...) or no OS at all. Win8, with or without a .1, is a sack of shit.

tl:dr. Call me Luddite if you will. I'll just use something that works for me, and it ain't Win8

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Samsung Galaxy Note 8: Proof the pen is mightier?

GregC

And some stuff does not even exist for Android like offline speech recognition (build in btw)

I don't know about the Note, but my Nexus devices all have this feature. I know this because I downloaded the the UK English pack just this morning.

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GregC

Re: PPI - so what?

I was extremely dubious about high PPI screens until I got my Nexus 10. You may not get any more information on screen, but for reading ebooks/magazines, viewing photos and watching high definition content the difference is massive. I'm a convert.

That said, I do agree that going much above 300PPI is pretty pointless, you're going beyond what the human eye can physically discern.

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Whitehall grants freetards safe haven until 2015

GregC
Holmes

Re: Still waiting for that legal alternative that is as good

Yep, for video especially. I bought a DVD a while back that was advertised as including a digital copy, which of course meant Ultraviolet. So after faffing about creating an account with Flixster, getting the app then downloading the file, I have my nice legal, copy of the movie ready to watch on my tablet whenever I fancy.

Except that in order to get to the movie I have to sign in to Flixster. Which means I can't watch my movie when I want after all, because I'm not prepared to cough £20 for the privelige of 1 day of internet at my hotel (another pet hate...)

As it happens I don't download movies - mainly because of shitty internet connectivity - I buy the DVD's and rip them (which is, as I understand it, still technically illegal here in the UK?) so that I have a digital copy I can watch at my convenience whether I'm online or off.

I can't quite believe I'm saying this, but the movie biz might want to take a look at their buddies in music. Apparently this year, in music, piracy is down and revenue is up for the first time in years. This could be a freak year, of course, or it might just have something to do with music being readily available to purchase legally, unencumbered with any DRM, and at a not unreasonable price. Make it easy for people to get your product, don't be stupid with pricing, don't get in the way of them viewing it, and you might just find they'll buy it.

People like the easy option. It's easier for me to get pretty much any track I want from Google Play or iTunes or Amazon for 69p than it is for me to go and find a torrent, and it'll likely be as good quality or better.. If I could do the same with video, at say £5 or £6 for a movie, I would...

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Microsoft touts business features of Windows 8.1

GregC

@JDX

It's not a matter of "learning". Or, just to cover off a couple of the other terms that get thrown out, being a "luddite" or "afraid of change". I have no problem with change, when it's for the better.

I spent plenty of time using the previews of W8, enough to know that a schizophrenic UI/UX that insists on taking over my entire screen is not an improvement when a compact menu a) works just fine and b) doesn't force me to context switch when I'm trying to work. Enough time to realise just how bad an idea hot corners are on a multi monitor setup. To name just a couple of my bigger annoyances.

Now here's the thing. It's not a problem for me. I've simply stayed on Windows 7 at work. At home I'm pretty much in the "post-PC" world already. But if MS were to introduce the option of a "classic" mode then I might upgrade. Given the numbers 8 is (not) selling in, you'd think the message might have got through.

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