* Posts by Iain 4

30 posts • joined 7 Jul 2009

Surface: Because Microsoft does so well making hardware?

Iain 4

Re: This is how you build a PC?

"If" Google started selling their own hardware? The company bought Motorola, and right from the start favoured individual OEMs with close collaboration over the Nexus phones.

I can certainly understand Acer and Asus being rather upset that they didn't know about this prior to Monday's announcement, because it's blown a pretty big hole in their Win8 Ultrabook plans. But if they hadn't been so rubbish in the first place this wouldn't be necessary.

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Sony KDL-40HX723 40in LED 3D TV

Iain 4
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Oddly, I preferred the NX

HX is supposed to be their top of the range for image quality, but doing a side-by-side comparison I went for the equivalent NX model, because the glass they use to get the monolith look seems to give better black levels, as well as making the presentation of 2.35:1 material (where the black bars blend seamlessly into the frame) far better. Although for some Godforsaken reason you can only have the monolith look on 46" or larger models this year, rather than last year's 40". Go figure.

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Forza 4

Iain 4

Yeah, but...

On the other hand, Grand Prix Legends was substantially more difficult than actually driving a real car around a racing track, too. Not least because GPL is purely simulating 1960s F1 cars that had tonnes of power and approximately zero grip, traction control or anything else, rather than a modern vehicle with handling designed to keep you alive. Difficult doesn't equal realistic, per se. Forza 4 is designed to be at least nominally playable on a joypad, rather than being wheel-only, so there are always going to be compromises there, too.

All I know is that driving my car in the game, it reacts similarly enough to the way my real one does to make the handling vaguely predictable, and I can't ask more than that.

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Iain 4

Only technically a lack of Porsches

Just as any Project Gotham Racing, Gran Turismo and so on veteran will recognise, Forza 4 is lacking 'proper' Porsches, but has plenty of RUF re-tuned ones. Which I suppose a real obsessive could probably paint over the badge on and de-tune back to stock, if they chose.

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Samsung demands iPhone 4S ban in Japan and Oz

Iain 4

But that's the point

"It is funny though, Samsung that has patents on actual inventions can't use those patents as they're standards, while Apple can use it's patents on junk and jibberish that aren't inventions."

That's exactly the issue, though. Samsung can't win patent claims because they've pooled them in the standards - it's impossible to make a phone that works without infringing them, so Samsung are obliged to use FRAND licensing.

Meanwhile, Apple's "junk and gibberish" isn't required to build a working telephone at all, which is why other Android developers manage to avoid violating them perfectly well. As a result, it's a lot harder for Samsung to claim they were doing anything other than trying to imitate iOS.

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Amazon's Kindle Fire is sold at a loss

Iain 4

So you've got the One, True definition of creation?

You're correct that the lack of keyboard makes tablets a bit rubbish for extended coding or writing sessions. Lots of 'creation' is possible of a tablet, however. Whether that's music creation, sketching, and so on.

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Onkyo TX-NR609 AV network receiver

Iain 4

I've got the further up, but older, 806. And while I get a Phono stage, it's not that hot. It's just not worth looking for them on A/V amps these days, as they're such minority requirements the money doesn't get thrown at them even when they are present.

You're much better off buying a separate Phono preamp, like the ones from NAD or Pro-Ject, and not worrying about internal phono stages at all.

As for recording, I can't remember the last time I recorded audio, rather than ripped it - the MiniDisc recorder got removed from the hi-fi stack on the last tidy up because it had been so long since it was turned on. But still, it's a pity.

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Apple MacBook Pro 17in 2011

Iain 4

re: Notebook?

No JDX, you're thinking of Netbook. Notebook is just another term for all laptops, because most people don't use them on their laps these days (not since they started generating so much heat, really).

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Björk Biophilia

Iain 4

Disappointed

Yes, it's another "free" app where once you've completed your rather large download you find that it almost entirely exists as a shop to sell you the real stuff.

I hate in-app purchases...

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Canon EOS 600D 18Mp DSLR

Iain 4
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EF-S should die, yes

The problem with EF-S is that eejits like me buy a bunch of EF-S lenses for their EF-S Rebel XTi, then when we feel addicted enough to start looking at the wonders of the 7D their mates have, realise that it's going to mean replacing all our glass, as well as the body. At which point, going Nikon is less painful.

Not quite painless enough to do it, mind you...

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Remastered 4K, 3D Titanic steams towards cinemas

Iain 4
FAIL

Why just with 3D, however?

Yes, 3D costs more to shoot in 2D. But it's a relatively minor aspect of a film's overall production cost. Both at the cinema and on DVD my viewings of Primer (budget $7 000) cost the same as Titanic (budget $200 000 000). 3D conversion is chump change by comparison.

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Iain 4

4k is just the digital master

Everyone with an ounce of sense (so, that's everyone other than George Lucas, who doesn't want his Star Wars trilogy to look embarrassingly better than the prequels he shot digitally at 1920x1080) is scanning and mastering at 4k these days where possible. The difference is visible on big cinema screens, and a nice bit of anti-aliased scaling down to Blu-ray resolution looks nicer than from a 2k source too.

The biggest quality problem being faced is that even if you're not Lucas testing out shoddy new camera tech, a lot of late 90s to mid 00s films went through a 2k digital intermediate, and so the source data just isn't there. That's why the current Blu-ray of The Fellowship Of The Ring looks all waxy; a straight comparison between the Bridge of Khazad Dum shots in it and the beginning of Two Towers shows a huge difference as the tech had come along in that time.

As for Titanic, it's quite fun in a spectacularly dumb way once the ship starts sinking, so I might grab a 2D Blu-ray (somehow I've manage to lose VHS, DVD and even Laserdisc copies to other people over the years). But I hate 3D films, so I'll skip the cinema run.

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Office 15 steals OVERLARGE font, design vision from Windows PHO

Iain 4
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Missing the point there, Microsoft

WinPho7 is actually very nice, even though it's selling poorly due to being just as expensive as an iPhone 4, and everyone seems to want the one with the Apple on the back and the thousands of popular Apps rather than the one with the best camera or UI.

But its interface works well filling all that screen space because you use a phone interface in a fairly serial manner - shrunk into a quarter of the screen while I've got other things going on, that amount of whitespace is going to be really annoying.

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Apple iPad 3 to sport 3D screen a 'dead cert'

Iain 4
WTF?

Why would Apple even consider this?

If you're going to be an idiot, and optimise the iPad for watching films, while at the same time ruining it for the kind of applications it excels at, you'd start by making the screen aspect ratio wider, not use 3D.

Fortunately, Apple aren't idiots.

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Dell refreshes Alienware laptops

Iain 4
WTF?

Umm, you're not the market, then.

"Sure, the M11x has a meaty video card and therefore gaming potential which the ThinkPad does not, but £600 for gaming and some flashy LED's a bit of an excessive premium."

If you don't need a meaty video card, you don't need an Alienware box. Period. The whole point of them is that they've got meatier video cards than anyone else, so you can play the sorts of games you're normally stuck on a desktop for.

Meanwhile, if anyone has an 11" laptop with an even halfway-comparable graphics chip in it for substantially less than it, I'll accept that it's bad value for money (and probably go buy what you suggest). Although the fact that they're not a hell of a lot less in dollars to buy from the US site than they are in pounds from the UK one is a bit ridiculous.

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Steve Jobs must face the music in court

Iain 4

re:Right that does it...

It's worse than that. What Real actually did was pull an extremely questionable hack to get their files encoded by iTunes with encryption. Apple fixed the security hole that they used to perform this probably-illegal trick, and so it no longer worked.

Base your business on dodgy security holes, and find things don't work when they're closed. Enough malware writers have hit the problem on Windows, but you don't see them whinging.

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Flash video comes to iPhone, iPad (kinda)

Iain 4
WTF?

Where is all this flash video?

Seriously - I bought a Touch last week, and I've not hit any Flash problems at all yet. Am I doing it wrong?

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Jobs' Lion to marry Mac OS X and iOS

Iain 4

Funny how it's only Apple that makes people panic

Windows Marketplace and Games For Windows Live Marketplace have both been around for ages, quietly failing to find an audience. Oddly enough, I've never heard a rumour about it becoming impossible to install Windows apps any other way.

Personally, I think this is just an attempt to counteract the jump Steam just took on them in the desktop gaming arena.

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Vodafone moves 360 goalposts

Iain 4

Fastest leaving of Vodafone?

Joined Voda, getting an Android thing.

Got it home. Hated 360.

Took it back, left Voda.

Total round-trip time about 90 minutes.

Back with Orange now, much better.

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Tesla Motors: Our cars don't burst into flame, but our emails do

Iain 4

It could be worse

So far, as far as I can tell, fewer Teslas have self-immolated than Ferrari F458s. Which sounds pretty reasonable.

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£99 iPhone stunt backfires

Iain 4
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"able to offer such low prices because it relies on group-buying"

As it happens, I've been told the wholesale price that telcos are paying for an iPhone 4. Suffice to say, group buying 200 isn't going to help you when group buying an entire telco's allocation doesn't do much.

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Nine Inch Nails guy scores Facebook movie... bitch!

Iain 4
Stop

It's not about "Facebook" that way

It's the story of Zuckerberg vs. the assorted people he's worked with (and been sued by for stealing IP) over the years. Aaron Sorkin's written the screenplay, so I can't see it being anything less than marvellous.

Your opinion of the worthiness of Farmville isn't exactly relevant here.

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RAC prof: Road charges can end the ripoff of motorists

Iain 4
Go

Flat road charging could be fun!

There's one big advantage of taking the cost off fuel duty and onto a road usage tax. I could ditch my dull 1.6L 4-pot and replace it with a hulk of V8 Mustang, for little to no increase in running costs. Hardly ideal as an environmental policy, but the numpty that wrote this report doesn't seem to care.

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Vote Lib Dem, doom humanity to extinction

Iain 4

El Reg struggling financially?

Is it time to brush up your resumé before applying to work for a Murdoch paper, then?

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Johnson: ID cards will pay for themselves

Iain 4

Well, he's sort of right

Johnson is correct on one aspect. Neither the Lib Dems nor the Conservatives can recoup £5Bn of budget by scrapping the cards.

Partly because Labour have ensured that the current contracts pay out to their mates at EDS and Capita whether a product is delivered or not, but mainly because the money isn't allocated - 'all' you achieve by scrapping the cards is closing up a £5Bn black hole in Home Office finances, not reduce the planned budget by that.

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Lad passes gruelling 'getting on bus' test

Iain 4
Go

So make it significantly more difficult.

If you tweaked this just a little, it would mean something. Just add the following questions:

1) When sitting down on the bus, should you take up:

a) One seat, or

b) Another for your feet?

2) Once seated, should your mp3-playing phone be in

a) headset mode, or

b) speaker mode so everyone can hear it?

3) If you answered (b) to the last two questions, would you like to be

a) buried, or

b) cremated?

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Official: Toshiba to get in on Blu-ray Disc

Iain 4

Really, Tony Paulazzo?

You seriously need to have a word with your supposed 360-owning friend. Because while there are Component leads in the box that will give you HD just fine, and a HDMI lead too if he bought the Elite model, an official Microsoft SCART cable is a separate purchase; one that costs rather more than a HDMI lead in Sainsbury's or Tesco.

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UK teens bullied into sending sex texts

Iain 4

Revenge on the revenger, surely?

It must be pretty embarrassing having your ex-boyfriend emailing smutty pics to the whole classroom. But turning round and getting him a lifetime place on the kiddyfiddler register has got to win the 'revenge is best served cold' stakes, I'd have thought.

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Xbox 360 reverses plunging console sales trend

Iain 4

Re: Shipped or Sold?

NPD reports sold numbers, not shipped. So will not include any replacements under RROD.

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BT abandons Phorm

Iain 4

Virgin will jump soon.

The advent of both BT and Carphone Warehouse pulling out means running away from Virgin Media if they introduce Phorm very simple indeed. So I fully expect them to drop the shitty stick Real Soon Now as well.

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