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* Posts by Jim 4

10 posts • joined 22 Jul 2009

Neuroscientist: iPhone 4's 'Retina display' not bullsh*t

Jim 4

Semantics is news?

If I understand correctly, someone with 'normal' eyesight will not be able to resolve the pixels on a Retina display (not the capitalisation) when the display is held 12" or further from the eye.

Then some twonk comes along and points out that if it is called a Retina display then the resolution should exceed the theoretical resolving power of the average retina (again notice the capitalisation). Let's just ignore the inconvenience that the retina cannot actally resolve anything without an optical system to focus the image upon it...

Then an Apple-basher jumps on this as proof that Apple Corp is a bunch of lying scumbags and all the rest happily accept this as more proof that Apple Corp are a load of lying scumbags.

So to be clear, the display does exceed the resolvable resolution of the average eye @ 12" and it is called a Retina display, presumably cos that sounds cooler than an Eye display. And no-one decided to point out that Retina is just a name and is not a retina, which is a defined object.

Incidentally, I find it interesting that the eye kinda follows Nyquist's theorem, with twice the resolution (on a single axis) in the receptor (retina) than the focusing system can produce.

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Apple Mac Mini 2010

Jim 4
Thumb Down

So what do you thinkg 'couple of years ago' means

"Yup, I know fine and well that the old Mini Mac of a 'couple of years ago' had the graphics power of an asthmatic ant, and would jump and cause issues with 'HD' youtube content, as was just fast enough to play DVD's. So pluging it into an HD telly suggests you used it for HD content, which would of been rubish as opposed to 'a terrific little media centre'."

I've use a Core Duo 1.66 (so that would be about 4 years old) as a "terrific little media centre" and it has zero problems with Google or iPlayer HD content. Though for some reason iPlayer Desktop causes the cpu to max out and content is unwatchable...

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Arcam Solo Mini combo hi-fi

Jim 4
Stop

Why 96kHz?

As Nyquist discovered, with perfect anti-alias filters, the maximum recoverable analogue signal frequency is half the sampling frequency of the digital stream. There is no such thing as a perfect analogue filter so the major cost of a good DAC is the anti-aliasing filter. Given that a young human ear can fairly easily hear 22kHz, filter designs fo 44.1kHZ can be very complex to give the very sharp rolloff without sacrificing a flat response in the pass band. Upping the sampling frequency to 96kHz means that rolloff becomes less critical so the filter becomes cheaper. For the consumer, 96kHz should mean same quality cheaper or better quality for the same price.

With regard to 24 bit, it will lead to better dynamic range but, obviously, you wont hear it if your kit is made with 5%, carbon film resistors. That is why audiophile DACs (and other components) don't use these cheap, crappy resistors but choose better (more expensive) technologies that are less susceptable to noise, have lower parasitic reactance, etc. I have heard a side-by-side comparison of 'cheap' and 'audiophile' kit and you can hear significant differences. Having said that, I couldn't justify the exponentially more expensive price to the wife...

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Mystery fungus smacks Afghan opium poppies

Jim 4

Any chance you could clarify...

At what stage or distribution does the market value reach $3bn?

As for a conspiracy, seems that those with stockpiles have the most to gain from this.

"...any missionaries advocating for alternative crops are least likely to survive to see the dawn of the next morning."

A friend of mine spent a couple of years doing that very thing. Didn't get anywhere but didn't get killed either...

"Why on Earth would the USG use fake bills"

Because real bills are promisary notes and must be backed up by real assets whereas fake bills have no actual value. When you are dealing with dodgy people why not act a bit 'whurrr' yurself?

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Japan falls for the iPhone

Jim 4
FAIL

Lies, damned lies and statistics.

But the straw man beats them all.

"Apple have (worldwide) sold 34m iphones, 17m of them to the US and 17m to the rest of the world, Japan has 120 million people, 3% of 17m is 510,000, "

So, from the article, the US has 50% of the share that you correctly identify as being half of the 34m units shipped. But for some reason when Japan is quoted as 3% this has morphed from being 3% of 34m to 3% of what remains after the US has taken its share?

"There are actually 3 iPhones, the iPhone, the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS, whilst Apple likes to treat them as the same phone it's really disingenuous, particularly as most statistics separate say, for example, the N95 and N96 (and sometimes even the N95 8gb) as separate phones even though the differences are as trivial as the difference between the different iPhones out there."

Erm... having read (and re-read) the article I see no differentiation by device or even manufacturer. The only differentiator is the OS that the device uses so all iPhones get lumped together - as do all Symbian based devices. You seem to be criticising a different useless survey.

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Hitachi Ultrastar A7K2000 2TB HDD

Jim 4
FAIL

@Steven Jones - More pedantry

"people mistake MTBF figures for average lifetime of disks - very, very different things"

Given that

MTBF = mean time before failure.

Failure = end of life

mean = sum of samples / number of samples = what most recognise as the average (rather than median or mode)

Unless you are asserting that failure does not eol the device, I fail to see what mistake people are making. Or are you suggesting that mtbf values are calculated/extrapolated rather than measured and therefore wrong...

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Globo-renewables all electric future touted again

Jim 4
FAIL

Dishonest, ignorant or lazy?

I can't decide which of these best describes large portions of this article.

Let's start with "Renewables simply aren't cheaper than fossil or nuclear. That, after all, is why we live in a fossil and nuclear powered world". Hmm, that is a very interesting analysis.

Would it be fair to say that fossil fuel genration has been subsidised, both directly to maintain jobs in the extraction industries and indirectly by allowing the externalisation of the majority of the environmental costs.

And that was the difficult one. Nuclear has received unimaginable amounts of (global) government hand outs. In the early days, the nuclear power industry was the poster child used to hide - things like the primary reason for Calder Hall and Chapelcross was to produce weapons grade plutonium. Even today we see that while a private nuclear operator may have to pay the majority of costs of construction and operation of new nuclear build, the major costs (waste management, insurance and decommisioning) appear to be a burden for the public purse.

Yes, renewables have received susidies too but these are virtually negligible compared to the sums pumped in to nuclear.

Now lets look at

"A modern nuclear powerplant can sustain more than three quarters of a million electro-European future citizens. If a seven-billion-strong human race lived at that standard, there'd be a need for approximately 10,000 such plants, which could be located anywhere. (There are already many more power stations than that in existence. We are talking about less infrastructure than now, not more.) There'd no longer be a need for any world-spanning supergrid or massive redundant backups or new transport routes across the Sahara, etc."

Now if the author was an expert on nuclear power he would be aware that an LWR is taken completely off-line, for 2-3 months, every 3 years for re-fuelling. So at any time, you are looking at 1 in 12 reactors producing zero power so you need to provide a guaranteed 8% over-capacity in the local grid. And god forbid a reactor scram, something that can take a reactor 2 days to recover from - so you need local (non-nuclear) over-capacity... or some kind of super-grid?

I'll just pick at the low hanging fruit that haven't been pointed out already.

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iPhones get sun, leg power

Jim 4
Pint

Re: wrong bike tech

"I've used the iPhone a lot for mapping on long rides (50+ miles) and have often wanted some way to charge it as I ride.Not keen on the dynamo idea tho, that's extra friction. Surely it could be done with magnets?"

How about a little bit of research? The article talks about dynohubs not traditional dynamos. One of the differences between the two is that "The Dynohub has _very_ low drag".

Of course, the bike solution will probably work... unlike 'yet another' solar power source that only really works if you live on the sunny side of venus... and even then only if you leave stuff in the sun for 12 hours...

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iPhone solo loss stares O2 in the face

Jim 4
FAIL

Anyone heard of the free market?

Any vendor has the right to sell their product however they want and for whatever price they deem appropriate provided that the purchaser has a choice. There are many alternatives to the iPhone that provide sufficient funtionality. The Apps Store is a more complex issue but that is not the object of this article.

"An iPhone is just another mobile phone, and should be widely available, on a network of your choosing, on a plan of your choosing, without limitation."

Er... No...Stop moaning about not being able to get the device you want for the price YOU want, the price and function are set buy the vendor and you have the choice of whether to buy this device or one of the (very) many alternatives. It would appear that many are happy with the deal being offered so your bargaining position is weak...

Oh, and you can get a legally unlocked 3GS for €850 (or less) if you know where to look.

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German bomber crashes on Moon Google Earth

Jim 4
FAIL

The Bun is harmless...

Definitly the Daily Mail is the most vile daily publication in the UK.

More complaints received by PPC than virtually all other daily papers put together - They seem to have no problem changing/making up facts to suit their opinion.

And, bizarrely, used as a yardstick as to the mood of the UK electorate by politicians!

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