* Posts by Ellis Birt 1

24 posts • joined 20 Aug 2009

Bang! You're dead. Who gets your email, iTunes and Facebook?

Ellis Birt 1

When you buy a book, CD, DVD, car etc, you also buy a transferable licence to use that product, whether implied or more formally written.

In these days of ephemeral media, many licences are sold as non-transferable. This may well be unenforceable in the EU [Court of Justice of the European Union in the case of UsedSoft GmbH v. Oracle International Corp. (3 July 2012).] As for providing the service to allow the media to be downloaded, as the principle of exhaustion does not apply to a service agreement.

So, the music on your iPad, iPhone, pc, ... can be left to one person (per album/track as bought), but if the devices are shared out, there should eventually be just one copy. If a company used DRM to link media to your account, meaning that the media became unplayable on your demise, that would probably fall foul of EU law.

It will be interesting to see how this pans out in the long run. One thing for sure, IT companies and lawyers will make a lot of money before it is sorted.

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Brit balloon bod Bodnar circumnavigates planet

Ellis Birt 1

434.500MHz is a spot frequency in the 70cm Amateur band (430-440 Mhz in ITU Region 1 and 420-450 in regions 2 & 3).

The 2m Amateur band is 144-146MHz in ITU region 1 (144-148 in regions 2 & 3). The actual transmission frequency on 2m changes as the balloon passes through different APRS regions.

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LogMeIn: We're stopping our free offering from, errrm, NOW

Ellis Birt 1

Uninstall started

It's as easy as that. There are other, better, premium services out there.

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Got it taped: The business of tape-based disaster recovery

Ellis Birt 1

Northgate's DR did not go without its hiccups. The biggest problem was getting the communications links (leased lines from customer premeses) transferred from Hemel to SunGard in Heathrow.

The communications link suppliers decided they would continue to work at their usual snail's pace, taking days to act.

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First rigid airship since the Hindenburg cleared for outdoor flight trials

Ellis Birt 1

Don't write airships off too quickly.

How many human beings and their luggage would weigh 250 tonnes. If we assume a passenger weighing 120kg (to allow for Americans) plus 30kg luggage

That is about 1667 passengers. If you had another 100kg of fixtures to accommodate the passengers, that would bring it down to a capacity of 1000.

Looking at the travel time, at the 125km/h cruising speed of the Hindenberg London to Brussels would take a little over 2 1/2 hours(similar to Eurostar). An Airbus worker travelling from Bristol to Toulouse could chose between a flight of a little under 7 1/2 hours or a 13 hour train journey.

This is starting to sound more realistic than HS2!

Longer Haul, London to New York would take 44 hours, the thought of cooping kids up for that time is appalling, probably enough for parents to choose to fly in a jet, leaving child-free, leisurely flights for people who are happy to relax, maybe work or read a book or four.

It might not be essential for a pilot to be on board and physically in control of the airship for the whole time. Ground-based pilots and autopilots taking commands directly from ATC with just one crew on board, resting but available in case of emergency could be enough cover.

As for cargo, there are a number of high value cargoes that currently travel by air, not because they need to arrive within 24 hours, but because they need to arrive within a few days.

A good example is fine beans or chilis from Kenya (check out the origin of fresh supermarket veg sometime). An airship might also be able to make multiple pick-ups removing the need for long, unrefrigerated ground transfers to the airport and would take something like 60 hours.

We should not forget that surface cargo transport is vulnerable to hijack and pirates and is limited in where it can go. An airship that can efficiently fly high enough to not be vulnerable to all but military attack and in a straight line could be appealing to many shippers.

As fuel prices soar, they really could come into their own!

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Now we know why UK spooks simply shrugged at SSL encryption

Ellis Birt 1

And this is news?

It has been no secret that with the resources that only a major intelligence organisation could muster the encryption we are using today is crackable.

Does anyone else think that the timing of this 'revelation' is suspicious?

NSA & GCHQ happy in the knowledge that they can snoop most internet traffic and selectively crack the encryption on the rest in a timely manner.

Snowdens leaks tell world+dog that they are being snooped, encrypted traffic increases substantially, NSA & GCHQ realise they now don't have the capacity to crack all the traffic identified as suspicious by proper intelligence so they try to discredit SSL in the hope that world+dog switch back to HTTP for their email,social networking and general browsing.

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WIN a RockBLOCK Iridium satellite comms module

Ellis Birt 1

Arduino

Balloon-release

sub-Orbital

RockBLOCK

Trigger

ABORT!

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Scientists investigate 'dark lightning' threat to aircraft passengers

Ellis Birt 1

Re: electrons/positrons are made of "light"

In Quantum physics, electron/positron pairs (and other particles) randomly come into existence. In the macroscopic scale this is balanced out by other pairs annihilating each other.

Create the right (energy) conditions and the probability of this happening rise dramatically.

That is effectively what they do at CERN (when they are not inventing the WWW).

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Another 170,000 Freeview homes to be freed from reality TV - possibly

Ellis Birt 1

Time to become an aerial installer! When LTE goes live and complaints pour in, it will be down to the householder to demonstrate that their external antenna, any amplifiers and receiver are in good condition. Only then will there be any investigation. It's the same process regardless of whether it is a telco, the radio ham with massive antennas on the roof down the road or a CBer with a linear amplifier and antenna in the loft.

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ITU suggests replaceable cables for power supplies

Ellis Birt 1

With EU support, this could be a runner.

Careful design of the DC output connector would be required to support different voltages, single and double-ended, maybe communicate the required voltage and current limit to the brick.

A new market in universal power supplies could be born, devices shipping with just the cable. One 8-way brick on the charging table at home, portable single-way for mobile use, power out socket in you car...

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Brains behind Kazaa and Morpheus unleash patent storm

Ellis Birt 1
FAIL

There will only be two groups of winners...

... both in the legal profession!

The US patent system is broken beyond repair, with prior art (I'm sure I learned about hash tables in the 1980s), and the blatantly obvious being rubber-stamped as a matter of course.

You might think that the lawyers created the problem deliberately!

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Yes, yes, the Olympics are near. But what'll happen to its IT afterwards?

Ellis Birt 1

Re: I smell some sport!

Not quite - no events in Brum!

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Europe's prang-phone-in-every-car to cost €5m per life saved

Ellis Birt 1

Re: Wrong numbers

Not only will it need to be a separate box, it will need to be completely self-contained with a back-up power supply and completely ruggedised and fire-proof (while maintaining a transparency to RF signals).

It cannot use existing GPS or sensors because they, or the wiring may be damaged in the accident. Locating the device might also prove difficult. It will need to be able to see as much of the sky as possible whatever orientation the car is in. Mounting on or near the roof will be useless if the car ends up upside-down.

And what about the areas of Europe that have no cellular coverage?

Nothing less than an EPIRB with its Satellite monitoring infrastructure will really fit the bill. Okay, when Gallileo is active, that may be able to support such an emergency call system, but I, for one, would rather see that reserved for maritime distress!

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War On Standby: Do the figures actually stack up?

Ellis Birt 1

Re: CHP is a snare! @ Horsham sparky

"The thing I like about the CHP fuel cell units is that you're not in fact using any more gas than you normally would to heat your home. You're getting some free* electricity in the bargain."

Not quite - look at the CHP efficiency as a central heating boiler alone. The outlet gasses of a modern 'A' rated condensing boiler are remarkably cool, barely warmer than body heat. Any electricity generated will be at the expense of heating efficiency.

Anything else would be running into the limits imposed by the first law of thermodynamics.

Overall, the only benefit of domestic CHP is that the reduction in heating efficiency is less than the energy wasted as heat at a power station. But remember that we are past peak oil and these use a dwindling resource as their fuel. In the long term, alternative sources of electricity will reduce the benefits of any domestic CHP systems.

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Ellis Birt 1
Alert

Re: We need to invent light switches!

For those trying (and those disappointed by) LED GU10s or MR16s, go for the warm white versions.

It is down to how we perceive the light. The same intensity of a 'warm white' will appear brighter than a 'cool white'.

Someone took this advice with some scepticism and changed the GU10 LEDs in a lift car - the difference was substantial - looking even brighter than the original halogens.

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Apple 'iTV' looks like Cinema Display, says Throat

Ellis Birt 1
FAIL

I can imagine this exchange:

User: "Siri, BBC Two Please"

Siri: "Sorry, I can only select TV Stations in the USA"

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Dell's rapier-thin PowerEdge M420 to render Hobbits?

Ellis Birt 1

It looks like Dell UK temporarily had a spec sheet available

Thanks to Google's cached page:

"Enjoy remarkable computational density with the PowerEdge M420, capable of deploying 32 server nodes in just 10U of rack space. Scaling up to 16 processor cores and 192GB of RAM, each M420 couples processing power and memory capacity with tremendous I/O throughput, with up to four ports of 10Gb ethernet available in an exceptionally compact, individually serviceable form factor."

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Apple TV stock shortage sparks new gadget rumour fever

Ellis Birt 1

Come on Google, get Google TV out!

This would be the ideal opportunity to steal Apple's thunder by launching a new, competing platform.

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LOHAN lifts skirt on 3D printed parts

Ellis Birt 1
Pirate

Will you be posting the designs on Pirate Bay so everyone with a 3D printer can make one?

And so Reg Hacks can continue to use that joke!

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Educating Verity the OU way

Ellis Birt 1
FAIL

Where are your references?

Come on verity, after four years, you must have learned about the Harvard referencing system. Where are you references (after all, you don't want to run the risk of fallign foul of the plagarism police!)

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Got a website? Pay attention, Cookie Law will come

Ellis Birt 1

Most of uw will have longer than just a year of grace.

@Derichleau,

Even then, they will only act when there is a complaint.

New regulations = empty words.

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Ellis Birt 1
FAIL

direct.gov.uk does not comply! Who does and who does not might be surprising!

direct.gov.uk is in breach of the directive!

as is the UK's largest employer www.nhs.uk

as for www.number10.gov.uk, they have had nearly a month

Come to think of it can www.parliament.uk claim parliamentry privilege to carry on storing those ever-so intrusive Google Analytics tracking cookies?

at least when we go online to complain about all this Government prying into our privacy, the ICO will ask for permission to use cookies!

Surprisingly, GCHQ and CESG do comply because they don't use analytics (is it that they already know who you are and what you are about to think?)

So I thougfht i'd trot down to my Local (tory) MP's web site to lodge a complaint. But I come across yet another illegal tracking cookie on www.conservatives.com, just to be fair, I check out the other main parties. Reknowned for their attitudes to personal privacy, www.labour.org.uk don't fail to meet expectations with the all too familiar Google Analytics javascript.

Oh Well, surely the Lib. Dems will be championing the cause for Europw and our privacy. Yet another disappointment... _gat._getTracker("UA-xxxxxx-x") but no sign of anyrequest for my permission.

Oh Well, I'm sure my privacy will be safe when I go and see where this directive came from - safe in the knowledge that I won't find a cooke named something like "ec_exit_survey" without beuing asked - oh, it does exist!

Well, I'm sure we can find somewher that the law is obeyed, maybe where it was passed www.europarl.europa.eu (right click, page Information) ... surely the cookie called __utmz must be there in error - but it contains my search terms - FAIL

Disgusted! I think I'll have to get back to work and just forget all this scaremongering!

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UK white space could fill up fast

Ellis Birt 1
WTF?

Why can't they just leave it for PMSE

We all want out telly programmes without unsightly wires and our singers dancing around freely with out tripping over loudspeakers - all this takes bandwidth - a huge chunk of which is being taken away in 2012.

I have heard it said that X-Factor uses over 45 radio microphones, plus in-ear monitors. In the west end, the bands are so loud that everyone on the stage has to have a radio mic with a channel that is not in use in any other theatre up the road.

Then, when someone wants to organise something in Trafalgar square - a celebration over winning the right to host a sporting event, that's more channels needed - then some for the world's press.

The numbers are staggering and with the existing users being forced onto lower frequencies with a greater range, it's not going to be pretty.

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A quarter of Brits packing multiple mobiles

Ellis Birt 1

Like an employer is going to buy a dual SIM phone? and other reasons for multiple phones

So, you get a mobile for work, but you are not allowed to use it for personal calls. In order to cut costs, the phone is several years old or the bottom of the range - they would never buy a dual-SIM phone to allow their staff to use their own account! PHONE 1

Then you look at getting a dual SIM personal phone to use your work SIM in too - NO SUBSIDY. A personal phone on contract is far cheaper because the contract is no cheaper if you buy the phone outright. PHONE 2

Then there is 'Line Two' Probably the biggest missed opportunity. Many phones can support it, but the networks have never pushed it very well. For example, you could never get line two on a separate contract so no chance of adding line two to your company SIM and what company wants the admin overhead of recharging line two calls?

And then there's employment agencies who refuse to use email because they cannot do hard sell! As soon as you make your CV available, the phoone rtings off the hook. Don't they understand that the reason you are a 'hot property' is because you still have a job that your would really like to keep until the right job comes along. Would they be allowed to take a 20 minute personal call every half hour while they are at work? The only option is to get a PAYG phone, give them that number and leave it on silent! PHONE 3

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