* Posts by A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

72 posts • joined 2 Nov 2009

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Free Android apps often secretly make calls, use the camera

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

The researchers found it not immediately obvious what some permissions were required for, and in that regard I've had several users complain about one of my free apps requiring the location permission with quite a few "location, wtf!?!? 1 star, uninstalled" type "reviews". It's an app for building a GPS track to export for geo tagging photos in Light room. I really didn't think I'd need to explain that permission...

So yes, lack of app permission detail would help a lot - but as is always the case user stupidity is going to be one of the biggest points of failure but it's not hard to envisage a scenario were a dodgy dev writes a load of BS for permission description and people install it anyway.

The free lunch point needs ramming home - too many users think there's no reason whatsoever to have ads on a free app.

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Taobao shoots pirates on Hollywood's orders

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

What freedom is that then? The freedom to get what you want without paying? So where then do you draw the line so we have to start paying for things?

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Neil Armstrong dies aged 82

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Stop

Never have "coward" and "anonymous" been more appropriately used together.

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Coming to a cloud near you: dirty laundry

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

I've actually rigged up an unashamedly Heath Robinson-esque way of turning on my air conditioner remotely using android. Can't see much point in it for the UK, but with most of the year being towards the Hades end of the heat scale being able to turn on my air con when 20 mins from home rather than when I get in the door provides a lot of comfort.

There's a self timer, but that's only useful if you know what time you'll walk in the door.

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Reagan slams webmail providers for liberal bias

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
Coat

Re: A Bargain!

All my kit came with free mac addresses

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Ubisoft: 'Vast majority of PC gamers are PIRATES'

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Ubisoft's attitude to PC gamers generally stinks

But it's like roses compared to that of thieves playing games etc without paying.

I experience it all the time with photography, my wife with smartphone applications and my brother in law with music. If you don't want to pay prices charged, or obtain the product in the form in which it's available, don't buy it - and then write to point out why. That's making a statement, and that might achieve something.

If you don't buy it, and then take it anyway, you're a thief. The statement you're making is "I'm willing to steal from you, you'll have to either try harder to stop me or pack up producing this content altogether". The statement you're NOT making to anybody that matters (ie someone other than you, and who can do something about it) is "remove the DRM and I'll pay".

If you don't like the price, fine. If nobody likes the price, and acts accordingly, you'll get lower prices. I set my prices according to what people are willing to pay - if you're not willing to pay that and some people are, those people will get the product - you won't, and you shouldn't. If you take it anyway you're not a "pirate", you're not a "freetard", you're a thief.

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Ten Androids for under 100 quid

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Jelly Bean on the original San Fran

I'm going to try this now... Been using ColdfusionX (CM9 based) with zero issues for ages, and that was faster than CM7 too

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Anonymous takes down UK government websites in Assange attack

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Poor

"In any case, I have no doubt that US forces were well equipped with "throw-down" weapons for exactly such eventualities."

Source?

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Windows 8: Microsoft's tablet-desktop still painful to swallow

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

So you knew where everything was straight away?

It's a common enough turn of phrase, really.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

No start menu? Switching back and forward?

Shirley the new UI IS the start menu? And for not-pinned applications switching to the new "start menu" is the same as switching to the old? Seems to be the same number of clicks to navigate through, although things are in different places.

Took me about 5 mins to get my bearings and after that no problems. Other than having to use mouse/touchscreen more. Touchscreen monitor/using tablet as a third monitor is quite a nice use of the new system

Not being able to hit the windows key, type a few characters and hit enter to launch (as far as I've seen, not installed the latest version yet) - that's the big loss over 7.

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Samsung's Wang was up 22 hours a day, had no time to copy Apple

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

"The fruity firm also brought out smartphones that don't look like iPhones such as Nokia's Lumia 800"

Ahh, so that's who bought one.

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Burglar steals $60,000 of computers from Steve Jobs' home

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

"Excessive taking of property"

Any idea what the acceptable amount is?

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Apple granted patent for in-cell touchscreen display tech

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

If that were the way the patent system works, which it isn't, I'd just release my driveable plane at a price point below your car.

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Spy Hunter

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Happy days...

Ahh yes, Operation Wold

Many a fond memory of hunting sheep poachers in the Southwest

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FolderSync

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Its my favourite Android app at the moment.

Often need to use my tablet as a portable portfolio to show my work, tablet syncs with my server over ftp to keep it up to date when I make changes. Same for music, video etc that I might want to take with me or even files I create on the tablet. Then all the cloud compatibility too. 100% reliable so far, too.

@ Bassey you're kind of right, but if you use more than one of the services you can use one app instead of all of them which is a bit more convenient.

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Canon PowerShot G1 X compact camera

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

It might be easier to judge cameras in these reviews if the test shots were not so bland. I've had one 3 weeks, wth a bit of thought in composition and exposure it's already paid for itself with shots of subjects who found my DLSRs rather intimidating. Image quality is superb. Yes it's a bit slow, but why does it need to be any faster? Press the shutter button at the right moment rather than blindly fillng up your memory card and you'll get better results plus a longer lasting battery. Low light AF is BAD but when it manually focuses so easily, it's a minor point that within an hour or so you no longer notice. Lighting is brilliant too - it's very capable with off-camera flashes and has a useful-if-not-as-high-as-I'd-like high speed sync.

It doesn't suit the "look mum, my cameras functions let me be a photographer!" brigade - but the image quality makes it bloody good for Photography.

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Microsoft set to 'do a Nexus' with its Surface tablet

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: I'm no Apple fanboi but

That point may have been true years ago, but my Win 7 box is as reliable as my slackware box, no crashes on either since setting them up. In Win7 case that was release day.

My Macbook Pro with Lion fell over so often I almost bought it a no.11 Chelsea shirt. It dual boots Win7 and Win8 pre release quite happily at the moment. Would have sold it, but it's a nice piece of hardware - especially the display - and will almost certainly hold its value more than a Windows laptop I'd otherwise replace it with.

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Adobe feeling drained by new model, but hopes things will improve

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

GIMP

Like it or not, a huge failing for broad professional adoption is its name.

On top of that hobby photographers I've recommended it to were under the impression it was Linux only. The ones that then tried it eventually bought Photoshop when they could.

I used it for years before I got Photoshop, and I keep an eye on how they're doing with it - but it's a long way from being as accomplished an image editing tool as Photoshop no matter how much I, and my wallet, would like that not to be the case.

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Retina Display detachment

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: The anti-appleists just get wrapped up in the hype as the fanbois...

I'm a photographer. Its rare that I can use wifi in a clients office, and rarer still that don't have to provide data on optical disc. More generally the only real benefit a Mac offers me is the screen, but thats offset by a crap GPU. for that reason after trialling both went with a Windows desktop and decent monitors for all editing work, a laptop and tablet for working with clients. With decent image software being GPU optimized these days a Mac just can't get close to the performance for anything like the cost. I see the same with a lot of my peers these days, and its interesting to note that a lot of long time Mac using trainers in the graphic design field have long since switched to Windows. Late 64 bit support for Photoshop is a big part of that, I'd imagine.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Too thin, too light

All the "just buy adapter X, just buy addon drive Y"... what's the point in making a device like a Macbook Pro so thin if you have to carry around an extra hundredweight (I'm not up with these newfangled Reg measures) in accessories to make it useable?

I propose Apple Funcionality as a new standard measurement for excess weight.

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Dijit

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
FAIL

Re: Android 2.3.7?

There isn't? Should I roll back to 2.3.4 then? Or are you just wrong?

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Supermodel-fiddling tool Photoshop CS6 flinged in free beta

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Smart move

In recent versions maybe 1 or 2 patches each, as far as I can remember. I've found Photoshop rock solid as well, unlke some of the other parts of CS. Its pretty clear where their coding priorities lie.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Been running the beta in a VM to take a look, it's not as worthwhile an upgrade from 5 as 5 was from 4, but I'll still do it when it comes out. That could be because speed gains are more often than not in the tools I rarely or never use. I laughed that Crop was a headline feature too, but the new method is so much more sensible, they should have done it years ago. Though it's not faster - I don't know where that came from. It is much easier to visualise what you're doing - and its non destructive now, like their unfortunately second rate RAW software Lightroom

Expensive? Not really - if you actually need it, it pays for itself bloody quickly.

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Braben sticks knife into secondhand games market

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Is it only me or do most people part fund new games by flogging their old ones to people who aren't willing to pay the price of a new one? I certanly wouldn't buy so many if I didn't recoup some cost selling them on, so the industry is getting a cut effectively.

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Fragmentation bomb wounds Android in developer war

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

I'm new to developing Android apps (I started a few months ago). But the first thing I noticed is that it's so easy to support as big or small a range of Android devices as you wish. Given the stories I'd read, I wasn't prepared for that to be the case. For me, this story says a lot about the quality of Appcelerator (which I admittedly haven't tried) and barely anything about Android. As such, stories like this have the potential to be a lot more damaging than 'fragmentation'.

I notice a few things that could put devs off: A lot of users complain about permissions - it would be nice if there was a standard listng for each app to display the permissions along with what they're used for and why. There's also a very vocal group who want apps to have no permissions, no ads, and no price. Clearly, they need to get learning Java. It's also interesting that a single dev releasing an app for a dollar is expected to throw out a lot more updates even if the app runs perfectly than say Adobe, who'll release something at $10, have it full of bugs and never patch them.

But is the time I've spent on developing plus the extra hassles worth the income? Most definitely.

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Supersonic silent biplane COMING SOON ...ish

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

The Japanese are working on a moveable wing biplane? An X-Wing????

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Adobe Photoshop Touch

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: hmmm

I thought that but bought this anyway last year, just to see what it could do more than anything. The size so far hasn't proved to be a limitation, in fact I would say Ive ended up with more business than ever just because I could take a quick shot and make a mockup for any potental clients.

8mp would be kind of pointless, too - still a tiny portion of the original image and the interface isn't really up to doing fine detail work in any case. For that sort of thing, when mobile without a laptop, remote connect to a PC and you can use your RAW converter of choice and full photoshop etc

As always, the best results come from the right tool for the right job - Photoshop Touch seems to be like many tablet apps (and indeed tablets), a tool to fit a job we weren't doing before.

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Android Market morphs into 'Google Play'

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: "the cloud service cannot [..] deny access to those items without [..] a court order"

I agree that something like that is required, but it also comes with the problem that granting Google permission to delete stuff would be necessary in law to be able to uninstall something from your device via the website interface.

The simple starting point would be for Google to update their Ts and Cs along the lines of "I agree that Google can remotely delete any music, movies, books and apps etc upon my request or where legally obliged to do so".

At the moment it's far too vague.

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Wacom Cintiq 24HD interactive pen display

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Answer the important questions dammit!

Yes, very much so

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Android a photo-slurper too: report

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
FAIL

Re: Google+

I would have thought it was fairly obvious I meant solely within the group who have the app, since everybody else I know would be pretty bloody irrelevent to the comment, no?

Besides which, what does it matter how many people I know? The fact it's the first option you get when running the app would still be valid if I knew one person or a million.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Re: Google+

Odd that, a quick straw poll shows that everyone I know was asked the first time they signed in with the Google+ app.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

As mentioned earlier, often the permissions are needed for something you may not consider. A bit like the furor over granting Facebook, Google etc the right to display your photos. How else are they meant to show your friends said photos that YOU are sharing?

Obviously with a dodgy developer there could be a problem.

On the other hand, how many apps that people install really are quite trivial to go and create yourself? A huge percentage, I'd say. In fact, several times when I've thought an app needs ridiculous permissions I've written something myself - and that's coming from no previous developing background. Probably the thing I like most about my androids actually, I'm quite enjoying coding and I'd probably never have tried it.

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Jelly Bean confirmed as Android names get sweeter

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Klingon Rokeg Blood Pie, surely?

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Steelseries SRW-S1 PC gaming steering wheel

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

If you're going to review a wheel...

either get someone who has used other wheels to do it, or review in a group test.

As it is, you're looking at one of the more unique wheels on the market and there's no indication of how it stacks up.

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Toshiba 14in USB LCD Mobile Monitor

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Just what I needed! Albeit a year too late. I use my Android tablet as a second monitor now, slightly laggy sure but conveniently that's not noticed with what I use it for. I suspect a fair chunk if the target market may do the same.

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Intel ignores Steve Jobs, adds touchscreen to Ultrabook

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

I have an ASUS Transformer, if I use it for any length of time on the keyboard dock and then work at one of my desktop machines I usually catch myself about to touch or drag one of the screen icons. OK, it's muscle memory - but it's muscle memory because touchscreen on a computer with muse and keyboard can be useful.

Now, not everybody is going to like it - the solution is hardware and software that accept, and function, with a variety of input methods. Forget the 'right' or 'wrong' way, the productive way wins out every time.

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BOFH: The Explosive Christmas Evacuation

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
FAIL

I'm stuck at work too

And I'm self employed.

Where did it all go so wrong?

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Apple Thunderbolt Display 27in monitor

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

You do know that was added in Photoshop, right?

Not that I'm a fan of shiny screens, just good screens in general.

Here's an idea for an article, Reg - a review of screens of a similar spec for us non-Apple PC users.

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Gone in a Flash: Adobe's long march to HTML5

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

In Argentina despite a large amount of iDevice ownership there's a massive obsession with Flash now. More and more websites are having those ******* flash intros, and more than one major site has moved completely over to Flash.

So of course Flash is what everyone (else) is using and developing.

I may just clean up when the tide turns.

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Sony Walkman NWZ-A866

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
WTF?

If trekking in Nepal etc...

...why on earth would you be listening to music?

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iOS upgrade swells iPhone battery-suckage grief

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"
Facepalm

Just swap the battery in that case.

Not that big of a deal?

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Ten... high-end Android tablets

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

For the quality of the device and the use I get from it, my Transformer was at a realistic price point

They did put the speakers in a crap place though, my hands mute them when holding it in landscape mode...

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Transformer USB

One correction, you don't need the dock for USB host to work, just a cheap adapter from Asus. Last time I checked it was quite a bit below what you'd have to pay for the same from Apple/Samsung, too.

But Asus don't really advertise this which is indicative of the approach to selling Android kit where I livqe. Go in a shop, the ipads are the first thing you'll see. They're on, they're accessable, and you can play to your hearts content. Since launch the high end Androids have been locked away in a small poorly lit glass cabinet. To sell in greater quantities people need to know they're there.

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Smartphones rocket past consoles for mobile game sales

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Where can I buy a mobile Xbox or PS3 with decent battery life and a screen then?

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'Insatiable' Brits gobble Blu-Ray, deserve reward

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Despite a peso:pound rate worse than 6:1, most people I know in Argentina do the same as me - buy from amazon UK. Even HMV's online store plus postage is by far cheaper than anywhere here. I wonder if that shows up as a UK sale? Z shops post here too now, the postage is often 3 times the cost of the product but a total spend per item is about a tenth of a local shop.

Incidentally, I just bought two triple play BRs from Amazon, in both cases they were cheaper than the BR-only from the same site.

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Hands on with Canon's EOS-1D X full-frame DSLR

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

The size isn't related to the sensor, there were plenty of smaller bodies back int he film days too after all.

My wish is that the bodies be a bit heavier than they are. It's got nothing to do with "man cameras" or "paparazzi zoom lenses", just that on occasions when I have to shoot wildlife handheld I want 2 things - partly that camera buttons are well spaced enough that I can reliably press ONE without looking for it and mainly to bring the centre of gravity towards my head and away from the very heavy glass my main work demands. The nearer me the centre of gravity is, the lower ISO I can get away with.

You're right to point out that great images can come from all types of equipment, but not all equipment will last 12 hours a day, 7 days a week in any weather conditions you can throw at it.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

The problem with SD cards is that they can break easily when you're in a rush or swapping cards a lot, I've seen it a few times myself on my 1D.

The other problem is recovering data - in my experience, and that of several specialists I've spoken to, you can recover data much more reliably from compact flash than SD.

Aside from a semi-transparent mirror how else are you going to see exactly what the lens sees? A digital viewfinder isn't what anybody wants and Canon tried the semi-transparent fixed mirror years ago - boosted frame rates but at the expense of so much light that it's never been seen again.

Interesting to note that the 1N-RS, the film model with such a mirror, could only shoot 10fps...

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Argentina stakes online claim on Falklands

A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

Interesting take on things, except that PR spin just doesn't really work here - people just don't seem to buy it. From what I hear it didn't bring anybody together then despite that being the intention, and no amount of willy waving about the islands ever brings people together now. Hardly anybody supported the military in government but it's difficult to do anything about them in such a situation, when if they even suspect you will dissent they kill you and sell your children. I've even had a few people suggest to me that the British winning was of benefit as it helped get rid of the military.

There is actually a stand outside the government building that a couple of people in Beatles t shirts set up trying to promote interest in the "England is bad" and "get the Malvinas back" causes and you never see anybody talking to them. Nobody cares about it, no matter what the governments try.

The obsession that people do have with the Malvinas is simply to get compensation for the then-kids and their families who were killed or injured when forced to fight over there by the military government with little to no training. From talking to the islanders themselves you get the picture that the conscripts were in quite a pitiful state before the British military arrived.

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A knight who until recently said "Ni!"

I'm English, and live in Argentina. Have done for years.

Get the occasional joke, ie a postman who threatens not to hand over my mail unless I admit the islands are Argentine (they still like Benny Hill here, what can I say), but NEVER any problems.

By and large, everybody loves England over here and reacts with a great deal of pride tempered with disbelief that an English guy has settled here - though it's now getting more common.

I've even asked people what they think of that situation and I've not yet encountered anyone who's even interested in getting the islands "back". People seem to accept that governments just keep digging up the same old thing to try and keep the media on side.

So this post I agree with - the anti-Argentina crowd, you just make the English look a heck of a lot worse than the Argentines. Congratulations.

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