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* Posts by Tom 38

2357 posts • joined 21 Jul 2009

Ten technology FAILS

Tom 38
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Re: Video CD.

Do you actually see Han shoot first, or do you see a bit of it and then need to turn the disc over?

I thought laserdisc discs degraded, melted or otherwise were largely unplayable unless you treated them perfectly. Any problems with LaserRot?

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Amazon's secret UK sales figures revealed by Parliamentary probe

Tom 38
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Re: If it's legal then there is no problem

If it's legal then there is one big ass problem - it's legal.

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Nexus 4 actually has 4G: But only in Canada, and potentially ILLEGAL

Tom 38
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Re: Consumers are "Mugs" allways have been

Once they realised that they had such a big market AND they could flog coprocessor upgrades to the people who brought them they begun to take DX chips and disable the FPU in order to sell them as "lower" speck cheaper units

Do you actually remember how crazy expensive the DX was? The SX was at least affordable.

When you first start making a particular chip, you bin them according to their quality. This is why faster chips (higher bin) cost more than slower chips (lower bin). Say in the first month, only 12.5% of chips test as valid at the quality mark. Do you absorb the cost of the other 87.5% of failures, or sell at a slightly lower spec?

Over time, as processes get better, the proportion of chips ending in each bin shifts towards the higher bins. If everything in a batch actually ends up getting binned towards the higher end of the spectrum, then potentially each could be sold as a high end chip, but the demand is mainly for low end chips.

So you have a choice then. You can leave most of your stock on the shelves as too expensive, you can cut the price of your high end stock, or you can ship high end stock as low end stock.

If Intel didn't do things like this, processors would cost significantly more than they already do. So take the already crazy price of a DX, triple it, and take away any option of buying an SX instead.

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Mighty 4 Terabyte whopper crashes down on the desktop

Tom 38
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Flame

Wish the HD manufacturers could break through the barrier of reliability. You only have 4 choices for cheap spinning rust these days, WD, Seagate, Hitachi and Toshiba. WD and Hitachi have 2 year warranties, Toshiba and Seagate only offer 12 month warranties.

12 months. Yes, you read it right. Seagate want you to buy a 4TB hard drive, but they don't think it will last much longer than 12 months. Mmm, my data feels safe with you Seagate.

HD manufacturers have been gouging us on price for over a year, and now they produce shit product.

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Ten Linux apps you must install

Tom 38
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Re: Here are my top 5

The learning curve is only steep while you are learning. Once you have learnt it, there is no unlearning. So why not learn something today?

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Tom 38
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Totally missed my most favourite program

ack - better than grep

ack does the things that grep -r should do. It searches only the files that are relevant, where as grep -r will dumbly search every file. If you're a programmer, and you've ever used grep to find other uses of a variable/function/class etc, you have to try out ack. It's just miles better.

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Tom 38
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Devil

Here are my top 5

No-one's reading this far, I know....

vim

Best editor bar none, blazingly fast, I use vim for almost every application of reading or writing text. This is a Pragmatic Programmer tip: Use a Single Editor Well.

I've nothing against emacs, but those nancy boy IDE editors (Kate, gedit, Eclipse et al) are like toy things compared to vim or emacs, once you have several years experience.

ffmpeg

The swiss army knife of media operations. Can do almost anything to almost anything. Used as a base for mplayer, vlc, whole host of other media libraries, the command line tool can do anything those can do.

python

A general purpose programming and scripting language for the 21st century. Begone with your bash scripts.

chromium

A fast browser that looks decent, is regularly updated, doesn't leak memory all over the shop (hi Firefox).

moc

moc - music on console - is a background music player that you run from your console. You can detach from the player, and it continues on running, and is instantly available from any shell, eg from vim, :!mocp

mpd

mpd - music player daemon - is a networked background music player. You run the server on one box, and connect clients from another box. You can also push the audio output from the server through icecast, and broadcast over rtmp to your lan.

I assume all of these things are available for Linux, they certainly are for FreeBSD.

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Glorious silicon globes could hold key to elusive PERFECT kilogram

Tom 38
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FAIL

Re: Leap Seconds

If we all say it is 4:00 AM, it is 4:00 AM. There is no universal time counter, time is a human invention of shared perception.

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Tom 38
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Re: Leap Seconds

DST = we put the clock forwards by an hour in the summer. Did you really need that explaining?

In the summer in the UK, twilight starts at around 4am, daylight around 5 am. Normally, people are sleeping at that point. By putting the clocks forward, it will be light 'later' into the evening than otherwise, people will require less fuel and lighting, and you get a nice long day to get the harvest in, without getting up at 3 in the morning to do so.

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Tom 38
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FAIL

Re: Leap Seconds

Leap seconds are one of the main reasons why we have DST? Run that one by me again Dave, since DST is solely about getting more daylight hours during the summer and harvest, prompted by a desire to reduce fuel costs on the country during war.

Leap seconds? Fuck all to do with it.

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Swollen SUPER-GIGANTO PLANET sighted in Andromeda

Tom 38
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Re: Astronomical Dope Slap

I have no idea what you said, but sounds amazing. I'll take two.

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Certain people rejoice! AC/DC finally available on iTunes

Tom 38
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Re: Meh...

Vinyl sounds a million times better than MP3s, assuming you have a kick ass hifi, awesome pickups, your vinyl is kept perfectly upright in a non humid environment with very little temperature fluctuation, there's no dust around, the floor is stable, you've shaved the cat and don't mind flipping over the LP after 22 minutes…

Personally, I can't tell a difference between CD and high bitrate OGG. Spotify streams me 320kb/s OGG, works for me.

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Tom 38
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DUN DER DER DUN DER DER DUN

tnanilialianan DER DUN DER DUN DER DUN DER DUN

(Back in Black, ASCII rendering)

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Mozilla needs to find alternatives to the Google umbilical

Tom 38
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Re: Dear Matt,

So what? In the 80s, everything 16 bit was either Motorola based (Atari ST, Amiga, Apple Mac, workstations from Sun, NEXT, Silicon Graphics) or Intel + clones. The only significant difference was that you could get an Archimedes for some RISC lovin.

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Tom 38
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Re: Gotta say

I can run chromium for weeks and not have it use lots of memory or spin the cpus. Or I can use Firefox, and watch it use all my RAM and all my swap space within 3 days, and start churning one of my cpus constantly - presumably trying to free memory.

If you shut down Firefox each day, it probably runs ok. If this was still the noughties, that might be acceptable. These days, if my machine isn't on then it's sleeping, I don't restart applications because its 9 am, they get restarted if they are buggy, leak memory or crash - which doesn't happen with chromium.

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How spreadsheets (nearly) conquered and killed the financial industry

Tom 38
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Re: Agility requires robustness

No-one has dared down vote you, as they would have to explain unit tests for spreadsheets.

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Google stealthily coalesces UK music cloud into being

Tom 38
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Re: Good idea, poorly executed

How to convert from proprietary fanboy codec ALAC to too cool for school FLAC:

for x in *.alac ; do

mv $x ${x%%.alac}.flac

done

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Tom 38
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Facepalm

My favourite example of this on Spotify is from Cee Lo Green's The Lady Killer track 3, the wonderful ditty entitled "Fuck You". There are two versions of the album on Spotify, one with clean lyrics ("Forget you"), one with the original. The original sweary version is entitled 'F**k you', the clean version is entitled 'Fuck you (clean)'.

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Automatic Facebook couple pages: Nauseating sign of desperation

Tom 38
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Re: So plain friendship pages a also creepy?

The entirety of facebook is creepy.

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El Reg mulls commentard icon portfolio shake-up

Tom 38
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I would love a "Are You Serious Face", from the popular intertube meme "Are You Serious Face".

Tide goes in, tide goes out, can't explain it.

http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/are-you-serious-face-seriously

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Job ad seeks devs to work two hour days in Australia

Tom 38
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Re: Boom or bust?

Aussie prices aint so cheap anymore you know.

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Mini retail empire Micro Anvika implodes, one shop to be shopped

Tom 38
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Competition rules

Yoyotech is a far better store on TCR, better prices, better service, don't try to sell you last years kit at this years prices and you can order online and pick up for web prices on TCR.

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Twitter survives election after Ruby-to-Java move

Tom 38
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Facepalm

Re: RE: Meh

Oh noes, subscribers, events and channels. If only someone working for JP Morgan Chase had written something in 2006 that handles this exact problem.

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Tom 38
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Re: Meh

We can't all work for Bloomberg stanimir :)

fanatical Ruby developers who believe the language's syntax, its high developer productivity, and its overall philosophy far outweigh any performance disadvantage it might have compared to other languages.

Well, they built it in Ruby, and everyone jumped on board it. You are positing that had they built it in Java from the start, they would have built it just as fast, and people would have jumped on board it just as quick, just as quick.

Ruby is no good for prime time anyway really, it allows too much hackery and punctuation - check out some of why_'s DSLs written in ruby. Write in python, if it is too slow, rewrite in C. C aint hard.

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Google Search and Maps take a pounding in China

Tom 38
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Re: Life behind the Great Firewall

You've just described the Middle Kingdom point of view. There is civilization, and then around it, only barbarians. The closer you get to the middle kingdom, the closer to civilisation you get.

China doesn't want to rule places like Korea, it is happy enough that they kow tow and recognise the real civilisation, and remain under their influence.

This is also why they largely don't give a toss what the rest of the world - the barbarians - do, say or think.

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Skyrim DLC lets players FLY DRAGONS

Tom 38
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FAIL

Bill & Ted

I suggest you go re-watch Keanu Reeve's finest hours. The catch phrase you are looking for is "Excellent!".

"Awesome". I mean c'mon.

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Debenhams cafes ban outré terms like 'espresso' and 'cappuccino'

Tom 38
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Re: Not everyone lives in London.

Go to starbucks for a cup of tea, and you get a paper cup with some hot, not boiling, water and one or two teabags. You get to stir it yourself, add the milk, add the sugar, dispose of the tea bags.

For this privilege in London, you're pushing £3. Three fucking pounds.

When I started working in London 8 years ago, there was this awesome greasy spoon in Smithfield I'd go to, you could get a cup of real builders tea for 40p. The tea brewed for hours at a time, was thick and black, you could make a spoon stick up in it. Magic.

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We don’t talk any more... on the commute

Tom 38
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Re: Nicely put

I miss commuting on trains, so civilized to be able to sit or stand in relative comfort.

I commute on the Central Line, even on these cold autumnal mornings, you get to experience 15 minutes of sweaty "Adult Sardines" with people I wouldn't normally want to get with 5 metres of.

The trick on the underground is visualisation of a safe, happy place, which does not go hand in hand with chatting to random people, or in my experience, eye contact.

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Mexican Zetas ENSLAVING engineers to run crimelords' radio net

Tom 38
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Facepalm

Re: Savagery

No, proximity to the most profitable illegal drugs market in the world. Yay for prohibition!

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UK iPad Mini FRENZY: Queues stretch SEVERAL FEET from till

Tom 38
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Trollface

Looks just like a Samsung launch.

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Apple puts less of its takings into R&D, hires more sales cultists

Tom 38
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Headmaster

Re: More Leach stupidity

The headline, in case you missed it is

APPLE PUTS LESS OF ITS TAKINGS INTO R&D, HIRES MORE SALES CULTISTS

In 2011, $2.4bn was spent on research and development

[Apple] spent $3.4bn on boffinry in [2012]

If the headline said "smaller proportion" it would be accurate. But it doesn't. It says LESS. $3.4bn is not less than $2.4bn.

Numbers eh, so confusing.

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iPad Mini's quite a handful

Tom 38
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Mushroom

Hardcore gamers might prefer joypads with buttons

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA

Oh wait, you weren't joking? Hardcore gamers prefer keyboard and mouse pal.

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Sony turned off by CEA's 'Ultra HD' TV label

Tom 38
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SuperHD

ClearHD

TurboHD

ExtraFullHD

EnhancedHD

SuperHD gets my vote. It's also in use already to describe 4k sets.

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To Russia with Love? Georgia snaps 'cyber-spy' with his own cam

Tom 38
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Hacked off Georgians say hacker hacked them so they hacked the hacker and took a photo of the hack.

Hackneyed.

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Jimmy Savile ringtones still selling like hot cakes on iTunes

Tom 38
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Re: Perhaps

Not common but not uncommon

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Tom 38
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Stop

Re: Eh

I've not seen any evidence, you haven't seen any evidence. I'd be surprised if the police have seen any evidence.

I've seen that the police have lots of "inquiries" ongoing in to things that happened in the 70s. Most of these, without independent corroboration, will boil down to "she said, he said", except that the "he" is dead and cannot say anything. This is why, "of the dead, speak nothing except good".

Re-hashing this shit does no good to the alleged victims, no good to the alleged offenders family, no good to his charitable legacy. The only people who benefit from this navel gazing shit storm are the media and their prurient brain washed readership.

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Tom 38
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Stop

Re: Eh

Allegedly evil bastard who allegedly abused hundreds of children.

I find this whole episode unseemly.There was adequate time between these alleged offences for people to report them, doing so after the accused is no longer vital is just tacky.

De mortuis nil nisi bonum old boy.

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Freesat downs own website after Downton quickie

Tom 38
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Re: I switched from Sky to Freesat

If you're only missing F1 live, then simply whack RTE 1 on, mute the TV and stick radio 5 live on.

You will need to custom add RTE 1 to your channel line up.

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Tom 38
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Re: Bit Torrent

You are assuming that just because someone uses file sharing to get access to content, that they are not also paying for that content.

I pay for all my content, via Sky, doesn't mean I'm going to stop downloading the content that I want to view as soon as it is available. Plus, no "go compare" adverts, since they've already been edited out. Plus, no waiting around for a "box set" - "Hey you! You paid to watch this on TV, how about another £40 to watch it again? No? Why?"

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Tom 38
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I only use Sky to watch sports. I can't think of the last non sports programme I saw on broadcast TV. I don't just watch sports, but sports - cricket - is the only reason I have Sky.

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Brit 4G live TODAY: At last you can bust your data cap in 5 minutes

Tom 38
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98 per cent of the population

This is a mobile service, telling us how many people would be covered if they are at home is irrelevant. Geographical coverage is the important thing, there is nothing more useless than a network where you only get coverage in towns.

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Ballmer bets 'all in' on Phone 8 and Windows

Tom 38
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Joke

You've not been following have you! It's all the same!

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iPhone owners sue Apple for locking Jesus mobe to AT&T

Tom 38
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Yeah this case will go nowhere. Apple sold phones to AT&T, which AT&T then sold to consumers. This was when the only way you could get an iPhone was by buying a subsidized one on contract. These clowns have no recourse to go after Apple at all.

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Pre-ordered a Microsoft Surface? So SORRY it's late, have a voucher

Tom 38
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Your bank was right.

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Samsung posts record profits as Galaxy sales crush Apple

Tom 38
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Re: Do what you want, Troll.

So go ahead and take a high hard one up the old poot chute from Apple and the phone companies when you buy your latest i-Gadget on a new contract with a ripoff telco or just confine yourself to just getting screwed by Apple if you want to just buy an iPhone 5 outright.

I don't equate spending a little extra money to get the phone I want to getting fucked in the ass. If that's what you would have had to do to make enough money for the iphone, hey, I'm not judging you.

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Dr No, Thunderball, Casino Royale? Vote now for the best Bond film

Tom 38
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Re: Must admit

I'm inclined to vot for Octopussy because I think Maud Adams is the best "Bond girl" ever.

You know she was in Man With The Golden Gun first? (Scaramanga's missus)

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Microsoft: Just swallow this tablet ... the rest will take care of itself

Tom 38
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Stop

Re: "Microsoft actually writes fantastic software."

VS is ok, but it's no vim.

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Kick your computer... before it kicks you

Tom 38
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Re: I'll tell you what

When I were a nipper, a common reaction from dieing whilst playing the legendary Ikari Warriors on my Spectrum would be to punch the TV. Quite hard. You can't do stuff like that with TFTs these days, with a CRT you had more chance of breaking your hand before you broke the CRT.

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No GPS in the iPad Mini Wi-Fi: People are right to criticise

Tom 38
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My wifi only iPad 2 has GPS.

No it doesn't.

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Tom 38
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Cool story bro. Where are these "no data coverage" areas you speak of?

a proper standard multichannel GPS receiver locks a signal a fuck of a lot faster after downloading the almanac from the sats than an aGPS unit would.

Apparently it can take 12.5 minutes to download your almanac, but once it's done that, it's super fast to lock. I think I'll stick to my "fudged GPS on crappy hardware".

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