* Posts by Peter Johnston 1

49 posts • joined 2 Sep 2009

So what the BLINKING BONKERS has gone wrong in the eurozone?

Peter Johnston 1

It was obvious throughout the last parliament that the politicians in government weren't being entirely straight with us and banks like RBS and HBOS were still in big trouble and it would take time - and perhaps inflation - to unravel.

What is the situation now? Are we ready to cast them adrift and make monetary policy as a government, not as a zombie bank nanny?

Secondly a lot was made of the fact those banks had turnovers greater than UK GDP and most of it was business outside the UK, though guaranteed by the British taxpayer. How much has that problem reduced? Are we going to see a new bank guarantee system which allows for international banks?

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Why OH WHY did Blighty privatise EVERYTHING?

Peter Johnston 1

Trains are inherently more efficient than buses - one driver can handle many more passengers, there is only planned stop-start (and fewer stops). Our Railways are old enough that land has long since been paid for and the track takes many fewer vehicle movements than a road. So why is a bus usually half the cost of a train over a similar route?

Indeed a plane - which guzzles fuel, has a high staff to passenger ratio and pays massive landing charges and safety check costs - still seems to be cheaper than a train.

We have Tim's suggested methodology of a centralised state backbone and private operators (though each has a monopoly). So, in theory, it couldn't be state failure to allow markets.

So why are trains so expensive? Are we subsidising freight?

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Why is that idiot Osbo continuing with austerity when we know it doesn't work?

Peter Johnston 1

History is spun to suit the person writing it, then going down as fact for all time. It isn't real.

The first rule of science is to measure one thing at a time and ensure everything else is the same. In the 1930s we had a manufacturing based economy, so all sorts of stimuli produced different effects.

Consider inflation. In the 1930s, when the UK did well our factories sold more. The unions decided "we want some of that". So wages rose. Inflation was a measure of that process which could lead to a spiral of wage demands and price rises. A dose of austerity kept those wage demands in check and us as a nation competitive.

Now inflation is one of two things. Either a commodity has risen such as oil, or our exchange rate has risen, making our goods more expensive abroad. Both of these put a squeeze on our businesses and to keep us competitive, a loosening of fiscal control is necessary.

Because we still hark back to the 1930s we do the opposite, compounding the problem.

What is obvious here is that money - as Robert Maxwell always maintained - isn't real. It is just a promise and the likelihood of making that promise depends on confidence. Thus the trick is to deceive. When confidence rises, so does the value of the pound, making our businesses poorer, but enabling us to borrow more - we have to choose which is more important.

And, domestically, if we can fool people into believing they are richer, they'll spend more, so the economy rises, making it true. But in doing so they'll suck in more imports, giving us a higher deficit.

We're still stuck in the 1930s thinking that we control our own destiny. In a global market we have to look at much more complexity. Not just the EU and US, but the far eastern manufacturing economies still stuck in our 1930s model. We're in a world of unintended consequences which will get more and more unpredictable as these economies become a greater portion of the whole.

One thing you can be sure of - doing what we did in the 1930s cos a flawed source tells us it worked then is naive.

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Au-mazing! Cornwall sold GOLD to Ireland back in the Bronze Age

Peter Johnston 1

These boffins assume that just the gold moved about. Perhaps it shows that Cornish people had invaded Ireland. Or that Irish people invaded Cornwall and took back spoils of war. Or a third party raided both, Cornwall first, but met their match in the Irish.

One of the problems of academia is that they pontificate as if they know, on far too little information.

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Peter Johnston 1

Re: Neanderthal

You obviously haven't been to Ireland. They're a bit behind the times.

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Bank: Without software mojo, Android OEMs are doomed to 'implode'

Peter Johnston 1

What planet is

Many journalists are so far up Apple's behind they don't see what is going on in the real world. But this takes the gold medal.

Android had already moved ahead of iOS in 2014 with flat design - forcing Apple to ditch its old fashioned skeumorphic look.. But then it took things a whole big step further, with material design and cards. This gave a much simpler interface with cards for everything and it moved away from Apple in design philosophy, closer to what happens on the Chrome desktop where cards are rapidly replacing many searches. Android is now better looking, more intuitive and quite simply cleverer than iOS in how it delivers information and sorts it.

The problem lies with the far eastern markets. A whole new raft of competitors emerged as the space commoditised - Huawei, Xiaomi and a host of others. Motorola also drove aggressively into markets at a much lower price. This drove the cost of phones down and Samsung, HTC and Sony were unable to keep up. A lot of unsold inventory in the channel then slowed innovation.

Samsung has responded by trying to take on Apple, going upmarket. HTC was too conservative this time around.- the team had split acrimoniously over the launch of the One.

This is a permanent change - people even in Western markets are beginning to realise that you can get a perfectly good phone for under £200 so why pay £600. And Android has been hit first as the operating system is the same on both. But Apple will find that price premium harder to justify, especially as its operating system continues to fall further and further behind.

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HTC execs: Oh dear, did we say we'd sell lots of smartphones? Our bad

Peter Johnston 1

Very simple reason here. After the internal schism caused by being radical with the One, which led to the departure of much of the top team, they opted to be too conservative this time round - a quick refresh and a phone which looks much the same while the others moved on. So HTC was still considered on the reputation of the One, but didn't win the choice war.

It shows that not innovating can be just as risky as being too cutting edge.

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The rare metals debate: Only trace elements of sanity found

Peter Johnston 1

Imagine a fridge where everything is "Easy" priced - the closer you get to running out, the more it costs. And you are charged with stocking it - profitably. You'd keep it as close to running out as possible. But as the stock of eggs, say, got smaller and the price got higher, the profit to you in buying some and putting it in there got larger. The word "economically" is elastic.

When I was growing up in 1973, they told us the oil reserves would run out in a decade. Used it to justify a price hike from $15 to $50 a barrel. Then suddenly the North Sea became a viable oil field - essential, in fact, if we were to not be held to ransom. By 1987 it went back down to $30 as these supplies came onstream. And today we are still told oil is finite, and we're going to run out - but only by the journalists and schoolteachers who are regurgitating the old "knowledge" without updating it..

The root of the problem is much simpler - there is a finite resource - attention.

Journalists, scientists (and pseudo-scientists), researchers after a new grant and anyone who wants funding for a project faces a simple facet of human nature. We don't act until things become "a crisis". The article/research paper/infographic which says "reserves are low at the moment but when the price doubles lots more capacity will come onstream" gets little attention - the one which says "everyone will die" does. The false binary - do something or die - is a powerful one (as you can see in the "X is dead" articles which are so popular). This phoney war is keeping many Universities in funding, many papers and websites from folding and many "scientists" in a living on the lecture circuit.

But crying wolf has its own downside. In an Open Data environment people can see how they are being hoodwinked. In a world where the data is out there the charlatan - be they academic or journalistic - cannot make money from repeating the lie in ever more strident terms. We've seen this on climate change, we're seeing it in emissions... the sine wave is still there but he amplitude is lessening. Soon the data will take over and the lies will be lost - still said but no-one is listening. Then, of course, the real catastrophe will strike - the one the figures didn't predict.

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NEVER MIND the B*LLOCKS Osbo peddles, deficits don't really matter

Peter Johnston 1

Re: An excellent example ...

We, across Europe, pay 10 times the world average for healthcare. Yet lifespans are less than a year longer.

We really should be framing this around why we are not achieving ten times better than average healthcare for the money we spend, either improving results or reducing spend, not worrying about a few nurses and paractemol.

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Peter Johnston 1

Re: An excellent example ...

Or you could pay peanuts, get monkeys, then use this as an argument for abolishing the service and putting it out to the private sector.

The real problem, however, is that the civil service isn't a meritocracy. You get promoted on length of service, not ability. And sacking people for poor performance - well that is practically impossible. So you get monkeys at the top, even though you pay lots of peanuts.

And that's why you should put it out to the private sector!

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Bruce Schneier's Data and Goliath – solution or part of the problem?

Peter Johnston 1

Privacy is an ancient idea about maintaining a facade. In public you had to pretend to be god-fearing, support the king and government and be a paragon of virtue in all things. Behind the facade - in privacy - you could beat your wife, mistreat your animals and servants, indulge your sexual desires regardless of whether they were consensual and generally use your power to bully everyone.

Privacy kept corrupt governments in power. Privacy allowed companies like Intel to bribe others not to allow a fair business playing field. Privacy allowed people like Savile and Harris to abuse their positions of influence. Privacy allowed sexism, racism and eugenics free rein.

Privacy is the scourge of good people everywhere. We should be using technology to tear it down, everywhere it exists.

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Australia cracks tech giants' tax dodge code

Peter Johnston 1

Why are we focusing on probably 1% of the tax companies pay?

In most companies the largest bill, after cost of goods, is wages. Those come with a massive tax take.

Second is property. Rent, rates and upkeep all come with pretty large tax takes too.

Third is often pensions. You got it - taxed!

And there is VAT - 20% on everything they sell in the UK.

Most corporations - like most individuals - pay a third to a half of their income in tax.

But governments have got greedy. They want a windfall tax on profits as well.

That's taxing twice, because that remaining income is what's left after paying tax.

And some people have decided it is convenient to their agenda of painting business as bad to pretend the other taxes don't exist and companies are evading the only one they have to pay.

The frightening thing is that people seem gullible enough to believe it. Allowing politicians to paint themselves as doing good, when they are protecting their own inefficiencies and greed.

And all it is doing is forcing more offshoring.

Just as unions forced manufacturing abroad, this lie is forcing retailing abroad.

Why work in high tax, bullying economies when a host of low-tax ones are opening up?

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Peter Johnston 1

No-one is addressing the real problem here. Why is Australia taking much more of its companies tax dollars than Singapore? Are they less efficient? Greedy, even?

Why should we support giving the least efficient countries the most money?

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So how should we tax these BASTARD COMPANIES, then?

Peter Johnston 1

High Wage and High Cost Economies

In some countries wages are high, but everything costs more.

In others wages are low, but everything's cheap.

Indirect Taxation is often what makes the difference.

For example, in the UK, 75p of every litre of fuel is paid to the government in tax.

That affects the price of everything.

Making us an "everything costs more" economy and we need higher wages to compensate.

But internationally, that makes us a bad place to situate a company.

High wages means high cost of goods. So the company goes somewhere else.

We compete only against other governments who do the same - cheaper than Germany but way off Indonesia, for example.

And we're offering high corporate taxation against other countries' free factories, incentive schemes and better infrastructure. The net effect is negative.

The Butterfly Wings effect of high corporate taxation in a world economy is massive. The loss of companies like HSBC will not only cost us corporation tax, but rates, employee rents, purchases of goods etc.

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Peter Johnston 1

Re: Fair Tax?

The same really happens with personal tax. If we were told that we have to pay 47% of our income in tax a massive evasion industry would result. So instead they take it in dribs and drabs on what we spend. Effectively they tax us twice (or more) allowing us spend our taxed income on taxed goods, then what's left they take as inheritance tax. A company tax is a direct tax on all of us as it raises the price of the goods we buy and a penny here becomes 10 pence at the till (ask the brewers).

It was Hayek who showed what was really going on. Since democracy was spread out to the wider populations, politicians have seen the need to bribe people openly, while taking their money back secretly. What started at 10% (and caused riots back then) is now 47% and rising on an exponential graph. He called it the road to serfdom.

We have cart before horse. If we set tax at a standard figure and restrict it to a single tax per person, then told everyone what that means we could afford, a lot of the waste would be stripped away. But, as we saw in the '80s with poll tax, the people who are gaming the current complexity won't let that happen.

PS: Another exponential out of control is expenditure. For example, the NHS employs 10x the world average number of caregivers, yet the outcome is only a year longer life.

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The Walton kids are ABSURDLY wealthy – and you're benefitting

Peter Johnston 1

Just another thought. They make 1.5%. You and I can get 1.6% on an instant access ISA.

So the sensible thing for them to do would be simply to put the money on deposit.

By not doing so, however, they keep 2.2 million people in employment directly, plus all of those in their suppliers, logistics etc. And pay billions in rent and rates on stores, employment taxes, pensions and medical insurance.

Without Walmart every American (and Brit, because of ASDA) would have to pay more tax.

And don't forget the trickle down. Their employees have money to spend.

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Pi(e) Day of the Century is upon us! Time to celebrate 3/14/15 in style, surely?

Peter Johnston 1

Not only is the month in the wrong place, but the year celebrates an event which didn't happen in the chosen year. Perhaps it's time for a new digital calendar.

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Uber isn't limited by the taxi market: It's limited by the Electronic Thumb market

Peter Johnston 1

Wasn't it Robert Maxwell who said there is no such thing as money? His view was it was only a promise on a piece of paper. Uber seems to have bought into the theory.

Apple raises an interesting question. Is the Smartphone market actually larger than the mobile phone market would have been? Hasn't it cannibalised the music player market, the camera market, the filofax market, even the taxi market (as people communicate online rather than going to see eachother)?

But the biggest question is over the 1%. I'm reminded of the old story of the guy driving past an American and a Brit in a Rolls Royce.

The American says "I'm going to try hard and one day I'll have a car like that".

The Brit says "How dare he have a car like that - I'm going to scratch it."

Perhaps Oxfam should employ more Americans. Then we can all have our 7 billionth of something worth having a share of.

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Crap broadband holds back HALF of rural small biz types

Peter Johnston 1

Re: Pity the poor rural business

The reason why this imbalance exists is because of bias in investment in the industrial era.

But commuting to cities is also the cause of most of our vehicle pollution. And cities have higher crime, lower life expectancy and more mental health issues.

We should stop subsidising city living.

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Xiaomi: It really ISN'T a biz-miracle idiot tax like Apple

Peter Johnston 1

Making money on old kit

I read elsewhere that Xiaomi's route to profit was on older kit. It priced according to the cost of components on new kit, then made more money as these were commoditised and the price came down. Rather like Apple selling old iPhone 5 innards dressed up as the 5C.

Apple certainly has two groups of consumers in the UK - those whose carrier upgrade cycle fits with the main release and those where it fits with the S release. Xiaomi seems to be simply missing one of these cycles.

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Another lick of Lollipop: Google updates latest Android to 5.0.1

Peter Johnston 1

Somebody is lying here.

I have Lollipop on my Nexus 4.

Wi-fi - much better - now I can Skype where it was unusable before.

Speed - at least twice as fast

Battery life - transformed. It used to suddenly just drain - rarely lasting 24 hours.

Now I'm getting several days of use.

I'm suspecting a negative spin campaign, probably from a journalist on their subsidised Apple kit.

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Under the Iron Sea: YES, tech and science could SAVE the planet

Peter Johnston 1

Wow. How to fuck the planet big time!

Messing with an eco-system without understanding it is a recipe for disaster. What if, for example, fish move there to eat these plankton and populations drop elsewhere. Or the poo from all these extra creatures provides nutrients for things we didn't want to see explode in population.

Has myxomatosis taught us nothing?

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Docker: Sorry, you're just going to have to learn about it. Today we begin

Peter Johnston 1

Are you aware that you can do this natively in Google Cloud Platform? It has a Container Engine based on Kubernetes.

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Words to put dread in a sysadmin's heart: 'We are moving our cloud from Windows to Linux'

Peter Johnston 1

Google Cloud Platform charges by the minute so spikes are no problem. It has 70 centres worldwide, so you can deploy one (or more) close to whichever cities you have traction in. Containers mean you can upgrade or fix without any downtime. There is no minimum charge either - you can start for free, in fact they'll give you $300 worth of time to get you going.

Using Bitnami you can have Linux up and running in a minute or two without any knowledge of code or software at all. And a host of open-source apps too. I set up eXoPlatform which is near impossible to set up on Windows, without a line of code.

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Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE

Peter Johnston 1

Alexander Graham Bell was Scottish. American's love to take credit for all inventions, and will change people's nationalities to fit. But don't be taken in.

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This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup

Peter Johnston 1

Good for you, Damon. If you live in (or can get to) the Thames Valley I'd love you to come and tell us the story at Thames Valley Startups in Reading. Our Internet of Things Group would be interested too.

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Has Google gone too far? Indie labels say it's crunch time for The New Economy

Peter Johnston 1

Someone is being ironic here.

Malcolm Gladwell says "Amazon is being the Goliath here".

When he has just published a book which explains that Goliath was actually the underdog against David, who had agility and superior weapons on his side.

What is he really saying?

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Brain surgery? Would sir care for a CHOC-ICE with that?

Peter Johnston 1

When IT was new it was hard. People didn't understand it.

That led to lots of so-called experts. To training companies. Consultants. All of whom knew less than they pretended to. And to software vendors who wrapped it all in smoke, mirrors and complexity. It made them look good and justified the ridiculous prices.

Now IT is easy. Like filling in a form. Connecting data sources is as easy as linking in an IP address. You can go outside your company to create end to end networks. Replace sales with ecommerce. Access from anywhere, even see your company's performance on your fridge.

BigIT is dead, rapidly displaced by a matrix of interconnected apps. Flexible, agile and inexpensive.

But nobody told the IT bods. They are still trying to build empires. Hence the moans.

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How Britain could have invented the iPhone: And how the Quangocracy cocked it up

Peter Johnston 1

Unfortunately the Technology Strategy Board makes NESTA look efficient and organised. Appallingly bureaucratic, inconsistent and disorganised.

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Assange flick The Fifth Estate branded 'WORST FILM OF THE YEAR'

Peter Johnston 1

The figures given don't seem to include the amount the NSA or some other arm of the government spent to get this made. Shome mistake, surely?

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Microsoft haters: You gotta lop off a lot of legs to slay Ballmer's monster

Peter Johnston 1

Community Engagement will never happen while Ballmer's in Charge

I remember the OS wars with Apple. Apple updated the OS every year or so and charged for the update, dressing it up as a major move forward. Microsoft gave it away for free and took the flak for "another bleeding bug fix". Game to Apple - and a healthy revenue boost too.

The problem at Microsoft is in the negative customer connection.

They've never addressed the "We hate Microsoft". Or counteracted the "Think Different" image of boring.

People don't show off their Microsoft product to their friends. People have no good feelings towards Microsoft. If something goes wrong they assume it is Microsoft's fault. And that they won't help fix it.

This is reinforced by Ballmer's mindset. He is old fashioned Command and Control personified.

Microsoft tells us what to do and we don't like that.

This is important. It turns successes into failures.

This is the fatal wound. It is bleeding Microsoft to death in the B2C space and increasingly in B2B too.

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Google menaces Apple's 3-year-old toddler with its cheap stream tech

Peter Johnston 1

We are hard wired to think of a new TV product as a set-top box, complete with yet another remote.

But Google has distilled it down to what we really need - just a connection.

I see this as a Trojan Horse.

Companies will set up their TV service to work with this device.

The next generation of TV will have it built in.

Google will launch an app which allows you to use your tablet or phone as the remote.

Soon no-one will watch traditional TV - it will all go through their Chromecast and stream from the net.

Roll on the day.

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Google Chromecast: Here's why it's the most important smart TV tech ever

Peter Johnston 1

My Smart TV is severely hampered by one thing - the laborious need to scroll to a letter, then click, scroll to another then click to achieve search on iPlayer, YouTube or pretty much anything else.

While TVs have got better, remotes have just added buttons - they need the same cut-through the crap vision that Apple achieved with the iPhone.

This seems to achieve that. It could turn a small tablet or a big phone into the TV remote. And along the way, it makes stuff which goes through Chromecast the default - why bother with stuff where life is hard when you can set up your whole evening on your Nexus TV app and simply hit play.

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Congrats architects, PR bods, toolmakers - you're the new digital tycoons!

Peter Johnston 1

Basically the only non-digital organisation left is Government.

Last as usual.

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Are driverless cars the death knell of the motor biz?

Peter Johnston 1

There is another factor.

People have an emotional attachment to their car - it is a status symbol, an extension to their personality, a proof of their ability.

Sitting in the back won't have nearly the same emotional attachment. Cars will become like white goods - just a functional "thing".

Car manufacturers rely on that emotional attachment to trade you up, to keep your loyalty and to sell you options. This will end all of those and commoditise the car industry - leading to closure of probably half the plants and 2/3 of the companies.

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Galaxy S4 way faster than iPhone 5: Which?

Peter Johnston 1
FAIL

You got that wrong.

The Nexus 4 is much cheaper - not dearer - than the Sony - £239 for the 8Gb and £279 for the 16Gb.

Makes me wonder about the rest of the article.

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MacBook Air now uses PCIe flash... but who'd Apple buy it from?

Peter Johnston 1
Thumb Down

It reminds me of something else

The deskinned picture reminds me of those public loos where the door opens half way through.

Perhaps where they had the idea.

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Tech giants' offshore cash-stashing is only ever a delaying tactic

Peter Johnston 1
Mushroom

Two ways to benefit shareholders

Shareholders have two ways to benefit from their investment in a company.

Dividends is the lesser of the two.

The other is from the rise in value of those shares.

This makes them worth more when it comes to sell.

So you can keep all your profits offshore for as long as you like - shareholders will still be happy as long as the stock goes up.

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Elon Musk pledges transcontinental car juicers by end of year

Peter Johnston 1
FAIL

Fossil fuel isn't taxed?????

Fossil fuels aren't punitively taxed, says Elon Musk.

In the UK we pay 58p/litre in fuel tax every time we fill up and 22p VAT on top of that - over half the total cost of the fuel. But we don't travel significantly less than Americans, even though we have a smaller country.

He also sets up a false construct - electricity v fossil fuels.

Electricity is made from fossil fuels - oil or coal fired power stations.

And because of inefficiencies in the grid and production, only 1/4 of the power produced reaches the socket.

Thus electric cars use almost four times the fossil fuel which petrol or diesel ones do.

That's not even counting the fact that electric cars last, on average, half as long as petrol/diesel ones as the batteries die and aren't economic to replace after 8-10 years. Since 80% of the environmental damage a car does is in making it, not using it, that's another big hit for the environment.

Yet Americans seem to believe all his stuff. Frightening.

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Apple: ebook price fixing? Nooo, nothing to do with us, no siree

Peter Johnston 1
WTF?

Just what is "Cost" for an e-book?

The cost of a printed book includes paper, printing etc. For an e-book - nothing.

Only the one-off costs of the author, illustrator and picture rights.

For a per-item basis, it depends on how many are sold.

How could Amazon sell below cost?

Surely by pricing it lower, they sold more and thus amortised the fixed costs even quicker?

Reducing the cost for everyone else.

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Android is a mess and needs sprucing up, admits chief

Peter Johnston 1
Go

Android 4 works - it is bad overlays which cause the problem

I have a Nexus 4 and switched from iPhone.

The Nexus 4 is Miles better - much more intuitive, faster, easier to find stuff and easier to customise.

Now is awesome too.

I did have a short experience with a Droid Razr on 3.2, however, and that was awful.

Android took a massive step with the 4 upgrade.

Once the old ones work their way through the system (Motorola was terribly slow with updates) Android will provide the best user interface.

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Adobe price hike: Your money or your files, frappuccino sippers

Peter Johnston 1
Go

What about the benefits

I've been on Creative Cloud for almost a year.

But I never see one of the greatest benefits discussed.

I used to buy InDesign, Dreamweaver and Photoshop.

But now I have access to Illustrator, Premiere Pro, Muse, Edge Animate, After Effects etc. - programmes I'd wanted to own but couldn't justify the cost for occasional use.

That makes it well worthwhile for me.

But I will say Adobe has a lot to learn about Cloud products. Their Installer/updater has got to be one of the worst products ever. The initial download takes days. Upgrades aren't automatic, often crash the computer and cause things like the icons to disappear.

Also the licensing is for a desktop and a laptop, but you can't find out which machines are registered or change it in any sort of managed way. You just open it and suddenly find - "this programme is registered on more than two computers" and have to work out what's going on. You can't run Muse on your Tablet and Photoshop on your desktop, either.

Great idea - poor execution so far. Adobe.

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INSATIABLE black hole in Milky Way's heart crams hot gas into cavity

Peter Johnston 1
Facepalm

Time for an end to verbal skeumorphism

Perhaps it is because looking at data all day is so boring, or that geeks watch too much sci-fi, but "devouring"?!!

If there is a pressure drop, things move to fill the vacuum. That is physics, not rampaging and ravenous behaviour by a sentient being.

Perhaps it is time for a move away from verbal skeuomorphism.

(A skeuomorph is a physical ornament or design on an object made to resemble another material or technique - e.g. Apple virtual buttons made to look like domed, chrome edged physical buttons).

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'This lawsuit is not about patents or money, it's about values'

Peter Johnston 1
Thumb Down

News

Mind-numbingly inept behaviour by O2 is not news - its normal!

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Apple: I love to hate, and hate to love thee

Peter Johnston 1
Alert

Re: For years I've put up with crap service

The head of sales at Currys/PC World has now moved to head up Apple's Retail Division. Shows their commitment to customer service.

One reason I moved away from Apple was that intuitive things didn't work. I lost count of the number of times I just wanted to move a file but the box was greyed out. No help, no way round.

The idea that Apples are easier to use is just Apple hype.

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Peter Johnston 1
Thumb Down

Re: Apple service for Android

Only an idiot pays for dedicated phone insurance - it is covered by most home insurance policies and by travel insurance.

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Peter Johnston 1
Thumb Down

Re: An opposing viewpoint!

You mean Apple charges you for something you should het anyway and you see this as good service.

If a phone is on a two year contract it should last two years.

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Peter Johnston 1
FAIL

Good customer service - Hah!

I had three Apple products - a laptop, a desktop and an iPhone.

The laptop broke down at 13 months. Hard drive. Couldn't buy the part - had to be fixed by an Apple Service Centre. Service Centre told me I could pay £95 to jump the queue otherwise it would take 3 weeks.

The desktop broke down at 13 months. Very simple repair - power supply - a part I could have been down to Maplin and had fixed in an hour for £13. They wanted over £100 to repair.

During that time I also spent over a hundred on "upgrading" the operating system - basically bug fixes which elsewhere would be free but were packaged by Apple into a must have release for $99.

The iPhone 3 was lovely when new. Then they launched the G and "upgraded" the software - no choice whether to have it. Suddenly things which worked fine became so slow as to be unusable. It got worse with each new product released.

I also found that, although I deliberately bought it from a store where it was not locked to a particular carrier, Apple allowed that carrier to lock it to them as part of one of these upgrades.

I moved back to PC and on to Android. The Sting in the tale - Adobe insisted I pay all over again for their software - over £1000 - because I changed platform.

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Arms biz: Your taxes mainly go on our fat salaries! Ha ha!

Peter Johnston 1
Grenade

Soldier's Pay

Yet again the old lie that soldiers' pay is ridiculously low is trotted out. Two things make this utter rubbish.

1. This is the base rate. Only soldiers on initial training receive this rate. Beyond that there are a host of operational payments (6 flights home a year, living in a danger area etc.) which take the average pay up to around 50% more.

2. Comparing this with a person who has to pay for their accommodation and food is not a true comparison. £14k is a lot of money if you have no rent to pay, no utility bills, no food costs.

Stop this underpaid rubbish. It devalues the rest of your publication.

Peter

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