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* Posts by big_D

1090 posts • joined 27 Nov 2009

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Recording lawsuit targets Ford, GM in-car CD recorders

big_D
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Re: I sincerely

Whilst I agree, the law has been around long enough - and affects every other manufacturer of modern media devices, so they should have known better.

I wonder that Clarion and Denso hadn't registered the devices and paid the dollar or so per unit...

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Government's 'Google Review' copyright rules become law

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Re: Arrrrr

In Germany you have to buy the first copy, but you are free to make a reasonable number of copies for yourself and to give away as presents to friends (a reasonable number was defined by the Government as 10).

You can make copies, as long as you don't circumvent copyright.

You cannot however upload to the Internet and make available to others (E.g. torrent), because you cannot guarantee that a maximum of 10 people will download a copy. As part of torrenting is making your part of the torrent available to others, torrenting copyrighted material is illegal here. That also means you cannot take a photo, for example, that you don't own the copyright to, and post it online (blog, Instaflickr etc.) without getting permission first.

So in order to make a copy, you have to have purchased the original in the first place and you can only make a copy for your own personal use (or as a present), you cannot use it commercially and you cannot make it available to others without limit.

You can receive a copy from a friend, as long as he doesn't charge you for it, but as you did not buy the original, you are not free to copy it again and pass it on - home burnt CD mixes were a common birthday present when I first moved to Germany.

The downside is a couple of cents added to the price of CDs, disk drives, MP3 players, photocopiers etc.

It works very well, in general.

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Microsoft stands on shore as tablet-laden boat sails away

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Re: Offer and demand

@RyokuMas a Modern App that emulates XP?

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big_D
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Re: Offer and demand

I have to side with AC.

I have everything in one device. I have a portable tablet, with good inking capabilities, with its proper stylus, not the rubber nipple rubbish iPads and most Androids have to make do with (devices like the Samsung Notes are an Android exception) that runs my apps on the move. Once I am back at my desk, plug it into a dock and with keyboard and external display I have a desktop replacement and still have access to all my data, without having to sync to the cloud first - useful if you are somewhere without networking.

Office might be available on the web, but it is cut down and the iPad and Android versions are pared back and not as easy or flexible to use as the Windows versions.

I don't have a Surface, I have an older Samsung ATIV hybrid from January 2013. With its WACOM digitizer and a proper stylus, it is great for making notes in meetings, then I plug it into the dock in my Office and have OneNot open in one window and prepare reports or presentation in another window all in the form of one device. I never have to worry if my data has been synced or whether I have network access. No matter what I want to do (except compiling (quickly), video editing etc.), I can do it on one device, no swearing that I brought the wrong device with me, or moaning that carrying 2 devices is cumbersome. This is especially useful when working abroad.

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big_D
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Re: MS Surface Pro would be my No.1 choice

On the other hand, a similarly specced laptop isn't much cheaper - retina display, SSD, processor, RAM, Docking port etc. but in a laptop shell; you can argue whether touchscreen needs to be in a laptop.

You are in ThinkPad, Lifebook, MacBook Pro, HP Elite or Dell Latitude / XPS territory, none of those come in significantly cheaper.

If you drop retina display, build quality and docking port, then you have a lot of cheaper options...

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iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple

big_D
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Re: Really?

Here in Germany more and more stores are showing NFC logos. They still don't accept credit cards, but you can pay with your NFC card.

In Poland, the banks have been giving out NFC stickers, which you can stick to the back of your phone.

And it isn't just for payments. At work, when I walk into the conference room, tap the phone on a sticker by the door and it automatically goes silent, there are NFC stickers for guest Wifi and so on. The Apple phone users have to fiddle around with settings or, for thr Wifi, make a snapahot of a QR Code to download a profile for the Wifi - non-NFC Android devices have a different QR Code which just gives it the Wifi ID and password.

Whatever Apple do, they don't seem to be able to do the simple, standard way, they have to go their own way.

Likewise I have a Yubikey NEO for 2 factor authentication. Works with Windows, OS X, Android and WindowsPhone. On the PC, plug it into the USB port and press the button and it kicks out the one time password. Likewise on my smartphones, just touch it to the back of the phone and it authorises the app automatically. Fast, easy and secure. Just not with iOS devices.

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British Lords: Euro 'right to be forgotten' ruling 'unreasonable and unworkable'

big_D
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Re: have I got this right?

He won't appear, but the article will and the search engine will probably not highlight the name.

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Re: I cant understand why Google is in the firing line for this !

I'm trying to explain the way the ruling worked - the court told the complainant and the source website that the article could not be legally removed - so it is irrelevant, whether putting it in robots.txt or deleting the site is technically possible; legally it can't be done.

That is why it falls to the search engine to remove the result when the complainant's name is given in the search term.

If you search for house repossessions / auctions in the area, you should still be able to find the article, if Google have done their job properly.

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Re: I cant understand why Google is in the firing line for this !

Which was my "can't", not that there is no way to remove the article from the original site, either by removing the article or putting it in robots.txt, but that as it is public record, it "can't" be removed from indexing.

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Re: I cant understand why Google is in the firing line for this !

If the original article is public record, it should not be removed from the search engine. It therefore falls on the search engine to not return it, when the applicant's name is used in the search term.

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Re: have I got this right?

It isn't about censoring.

Say a prospective employer searches for you and all they find is that you were arrested on suspicion of murder?

If you request the link to your name is removed, they won't see that. If somebody searches for the victim, they will still find the article where you were arrested. No censorship, you just actually have to use more generic terms to do with the case to find it, as opposed to your name.

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Re: I cant understand why Google is in the firing line for this !

I know about robots.txt. The problem is the page isn't delisted from the search engine, it is just not shown in results with the applicant's name.

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big_D
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Re: have I got this right?

Agreed, but look at it from the traditional press point of view. The press prints it, people read it and remember it or not. After a while, if I wasn't charged or prosecuted, then most people would start to forget, the newspapers would be recycled, used to wrap chips in or whatever.

Later, anybody who was really interested in finding out the facts would then have to go to the paper archives and research the case and would probably come across the original article as part of the research into the murder. The information is still there, but as it is irrelevant information about me (E.g. I was one of a hundred people in a dragnet, 99 of whom were later set free), so it shouldn't be one of the first things that pops up when people search for big_D

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Re: so..

Maybe there should be a artbitur that goes through the requests and provides a list of names and the links that shouldn't be returned, which is then passed on to all search engines. That is the bit that doesn't really work at the moment, because most people just think about Google when they talk about search.

Plus, if you actually know about others, then you have to submit a request with each search provider in turn and if one rejects, then you have to go back and argue that the others have complied.

The EU brought in this measure, maybe they should provide the manpower to process the requests and provide the blacklist for all of the search engines.

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Re: so..

The problem is, they shouldn't be removing the information at all.

The search engines are being asked not to link under specific circumstances.

Take the French Post-It Wars link. The article itself is still valid, of public interest and relevant. Therefore it cannot and should not be removed by the court - public record.

I can't remember the name of the guy who wanted to be forgot, but if you type in his name + Paris Post-It Note War, you will not get the link. If you just type in Paris Post-It Note War, the link must still show up.

The thinking is, the source information is still searchable, in general terms, but if you search using a specific person's name, who does not want to be remembered for an event (and that isn't in the public interest and the information is no longer relevant), then you won't find mention of that event.

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Re: More common sense than the other House

Except that they seem to have mixed up their facts and aren't actually talking about what the ruling actually said...

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big_D
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Re: I cant understand why Google is in the firing line for this !

You can't. That is the problem.

For a private blog, you could probably argue that the article could be removed. for accredited press etc. they cannot take the article down (iit is public record). And the article should only ever be blocked when it is searched for using a specific person's name. All other combinations of search criteria relevant to the page should still return the link.

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Re: have I got this right?

“Anyone anywhere in the world now has information at the touch of a button, and that includes detailed personal information about people in all countries of the globe.”

And they don't see this as a major problem and why the call for the RTBF was brought up in the first place?

The government officials argued that the search index ruling was impossible to enforce for smaller search engines that don’t have the resources of an ad behemoth like Google to process thousands of takedown requests.

You know what, the regulations in my industry are burdensome as well, for a small company. Does that mean we can simply forget all those pesky hygene and health and safety things, we just don't have the resources to cope with them! Nope? Thought not.

“It is wrong in principle to leave search engines themselves the task of deciding whether to delete information or not, based on vague, ambiguous and unhelpful criteria, and we heard from witnesses how uncomfortable they are with the idea of a commercial company sitting in judgment on issues like that,”

Again, bending the truth. Nobody is asking the search engines to delete anything! According to this ruling, they should not be deleting anything! What they should be doing, if the request is valid, is removing the results in a keyword search that includes the applicants name. If they use a different set of keywords, that don't include the applicants name, then the link to the article will still be returned.

For example, if I had been arrested for murder and released without charge, but the first thing that turned up when searching for my name 10 years later was the article on my arrest, then I could ask for searches including "big_D" to not return that article, as I was never charged or sentenced. Therefore, searching for "big_D" wouldn't return the link. Searching for the name of the victim or murder in general would still return the link, but it would probably be buried way down the list.

So, somebody researching the murder would still find out that I was arrested during the investigation, but that I was never charged. Somebody searching for my name directly would not find out this information, which is irrelevant to my current standing.

And all because Google is kicking its toys out of the pram.

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Senate introduces USA FREEDOM Act to curb NSA spying excesses

big_D
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And for American businesses wanting to business outside the USA, especially in Europe, it is the Patriot Act and the NSA that pretty much mean that no company in its right mind will put data on an American owned cloud service.

Add to that the judge in the USA trying to short circuit international evidence gathering treaties by claiming that offshore servers are actually onshore, because they are computers and connected to the internet, so companies like Microsoft have to break international law, because the US law enforcement agencies don't have the money and resources to do the job properly...

At this rate, the USA is going to isolate itself and its corporations.

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China in MONOPOLY PROBE into Microsoft: Do not pass GO, do not collect 200 yuan

big_D
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Re: Mac?

The Mac version is missing a lot of features, especially Outlook. I hate it when my boss comes up and says, "how do I get that in Outlook?"

"You can't."

"But my assistant has it."

"Yes, but she is using Windows."

It also has some problems accurately display presentations, if textboxes are filled to the limit - the OS X rendering of fonts means that boxes that look fine on Windows sometimes wrap under OS X.

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Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro

big_D
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Re: Depends on what it is for...

My iMac has a 64-bit processor, but Apple only installed a 32-bit EFI, so Lion is as far as it goes. It also only support 3GB of RAM... It now takes around 3 minutes to boot OS X (around 45 seconds to boot Vista on BootCamp)...

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Dusty pre-Facebook, pre-Twitter laws will do for social media crimes

big_D
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What, not how

Talking sense? It seems that some of the law makers do actually have a clue.

It is the what that is important, not the how. If the what is sufficiently well described and penalised, then the how doesn't matter. To whit, if you kill somebody, it doesn't matter how you do it, the fact that you have done it is enough - good, you then have the discussion of whether it is murder, manslaughter etc. The same for so-called cyber offences, they generally existed before the internet, just they couldn't reach as many people and it was harder to do accomplish - instead of whipping out your smartphone, grabbing a bit of video and uploading it onto some video portal, you would have had to have set up your Super8 on a tripod, set the focus, etc. and then afterwards develop it and get copies made and post it around the neighbourhood...

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Google Maps community competition falls foul of Indian regulations

big_D
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Re: Bureaucracy at its best

And what is with the OS in the UK? Didn't they also have a monopoly for cartography within the UK?

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Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes

big_D
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Re: Talk About Dizzying Hardware Specs.

And 1080p. Full HD remains the maximum supported resolution with GDR1, according to the reports, but 1280x768 and 1280x800 will also be supported on 6" - 7" devices.

The 1280x800 is added into the mix to allow for the inclusion of soft buttons (i.e. on screen buttons, like Android) as opposed to hardware buttons, without the developers having to change their applications to cater for a reduction in available screen area.

I'm hoping they will sort out the other Bluetooth problems they have - if you have a 3.5mm jack stuck in, the Lumias will switch the BT microphone on, but not BT audio, when you make or recieve a call - annoying when your car has BT handsfree but no A2DP. It also cuts the connection too early with my Citroen, when reading SMS - if I say "reply", it promptly turns off the microphone!

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Dual SIM support has always been there. The change is that you can mix GSM and CDMA SIMs with GDR1.

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big_D
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Medium Shop

The shop tile already is medium... You can only currently size it as small or medium, GDR1 should give us a large size with Live Tile abilities.

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In the Land of the Free, Home of the Brave ... you can legally carrier unlock your own phone

big_D
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Re: The land of the slightly free.

Here in Germany a lot of people are buying up front. Although the younger generation don't seem to have such a problem with buying a phone on credit - my generation and older seem to see buying on credit is losing face or admitting defeat.

One of the reasons I like living in Germany. Many shops still don't take credit cards, you have to pay with a debit card or cold hard cash, even the electrical retailers, the equivalent of Dixons, don't take credit cards.

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Re: The land of the slightly free.

That's why I generally buy an unlocked phone to begin with. You don't get the branding crud stuck on it and it generally costs the same or less than buying it "on contract".

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Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE

big_D
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Re: " were perfectly comfortable with the televisions they currently use"

Yep, 300-700€ for a decent 32" - 46" 1080p TV is all most are willing to fork out.

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French authorities take lead in grilling Google on 'Right to be Forgotten'

big_D
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Re: If the EU want to censor the world

The source is often protected by law - E.g. accredited press. They cannot be forced to take down an article. Likewise if the article is in the public interest it cannot be taken down.

What the law tries to do is make a compromise. If you do a search on "StimuliC" and it brings up as the first entry that you were arrested for murder, but you were released without charge, you can request that that link be removed when using a search term with "StimuliC" in it.

This works in analogue to paper press. The article is widely known at the time, but sinks into obscurity over time, so most people would forget that you were arrested, as you were not charged and convicted. If somebody wants to write a book on the case, they can still go to the paper archives and get all the articles on the case. To whit, if they search for the name of the victim, they would also get the article where you were arrested, but they wouldn't get the article if they searched for you explicitly. If you were charged and convicted, then you probably couldn't get the articles delisted when searching on your name, because that is still in the public interest.

It is a compromise. But Google seems, with its first few high profile cases, to be deliberately "overdoing" it and removing all listings to the article, not just "affected" listings, to try and make a point - that the law is censorship - when in fact they are doing the censorship themselves, because they are misrepresenting the ruling.

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Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services

big_D
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Privacy policy

you generally only get to see that after you have bought the iPhone and sign up for an account... It certainly isn't plastered on the outside of the box in which the iPhone comes and there isn't a seal on the packaging saying go to this web page and read the privacy policy before opening...

The same goes for the EULA on most Apple products - which is why it wasn't illegal to make a Hackintosh in Germany; in Germany you can only be held to the terms and conditions presented to you on the packaging before purchase, as the EULA was inside the box and couldn't be read until you had opened the packaging, which you could only do after purchase, the restrictions, such as only installing it on an Apple branded computer, were not enforecable under German law.

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Re: You don't have to enable them now do you?

Android are far more insidious than Apple in their usage of tracking data, but they don't try and hide it either (neither do Apple). MS is about the same as Apple in that respect, it is used by their services but not sold on.

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Teardown gurus iFixit play with Fire – Amazon's new mobe

big_D
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Re: proprietary screw

It stops greasy oiks from "accidentally" dismantling the phone and then complaining that it doesn't work.

I used to take everything apart I could get my hands on. The problem was, I couldn't always put it back together again - at least not in working order. Usually it sort of worked and I learnt a fair bit about electronics that way - it was generally the small volume wheels and the like that I had problems with, when putting things back together; that and the half dozen screws that were left over...

How much customer support time would be wasted if they used a standard cross-head screw and little Billy dismantles Daddy's pride and joy and he then complains to Amazon (or whoever) and wants it repaired under warranty, even though his son is responsible for taking it apart, which isn't a warranty issue, but he hastily stuffed it all back together and hoped you wouldn't notice, when you got it in the repair shop and you have a back and forth of emails and calls for a couple of months, until the issue is sorted and the customer is p*ssed off and will never buy your products again...

It is annoying for the genuinely curious, but not an insurmountable problem, whereas it keeps those that don't have a clue from making a pigs ear of it and expecting you to pick up the tab for putting it back together again.

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The seven nations where SIM CARDS outnumber PEOPLE

big_D
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Not just people

What also needs to be taken into account is people who have a smartphone + a company smartphone, for example, or a smartphone + dongle / laptop / tablet SIM.

Then there is emergency failover in corporations, where the leased line will fail over to DSL, then 4G.

Not forgetting things like mobile credit/debit card terminals, remote monitoring equipment etc. that run over 3G.

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Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530

big_D
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Re: Cheap?

The handsets a probably coming. But you have to design and test them, then they need to go through regulatory approval in every country, that also takes a lot of time (usually several months, if there are no problems - we were looking at exporting a PC with Wi-Fi built in - using off the shelf, approved parts - and that added around 2 - 3 months to the import licence approval process in some countries.

Even if MS gives the licences away and companies say they will sell new devices based on WP8, you probably have to reckon with a 6 month wait until the first products are approved and ready to ship.

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Re: Only an Android killer if....

And some don't like Android.

My other half had an old iPhone, didn't want another one (too expensive). She tried a couple of Android devices, but ended up with a 620.

One of the nice things about having several platforms on the market is that you are likely to find something you like. Just because you don't like another platform doesn't mean that it is necessarily bad. I have used iOS, Android and WP, my personal device is a Lumia 1020, but I don't hate Android or iOS, I just prefer WP.

Choice is good,

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Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol

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Re: Nothing works faster ...

Yep, I've tried paracetomol, ibuprofen, cocodamol, diclofenac and the other usual suspects, at prescription levels. None have even dented my back pain, at best they make me sleepy at worst I get side effects.

Last time I needed a cortisone injection, that was the second injection, the first injection the day before was a normal pain reliever (I can't remember the name) and had absolutely no effect.

The next step up is opiates, but that isn't somewhere I want to go, so I suffer with the back pain most of the time.

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Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs

big_D
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Mac Fanboi: This MacBook Air is dead, it 'as hit the bucket, it is no more, has ceased to be, bereft of life, it rests in peace"

Apple: "No it isn't, you are using it wrong, it's just resting."

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Turing biopic with Cumberbatch, Knightley to premiere at London Film Festival

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Real portrayl?

Well at least this time the Enigma was found by a British crew and Bletchley Park is still in England and hasn't been magically transported to middle America...

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SAP: It was our Big Data software wot won it for Germany

big_D
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Re: "Vorsprung durch grossendatatechnik" @AC

"grossdatatechnik" is not German, that is the problem.

The "g" must be capital, because it is a noun. Data is not German, it should be Daten, so the word they were looking for was "Großdatentechnik".

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Re: "Vorsprung durch grossendatatechnik"

Ah, is that you that I see in the cafe in Osnabruck every day making a pig's ear of German? :-P

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Re: "Vorsprung durch grossendatatechnik"

Da es kein Deutsch war!

Großdatentechnik ist ein Nomen und muss mit einer Großbuchstabe anfangen.

Data gibt es in Deutsch nicht, es heißt Daten.

Sonst ist alles in Ordnung. :-P

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Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months

big_D
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Re: Microsoft bought Nokia because ...

You are forgetting that around 2/3 of the redundancies come from laying off factory workers in China, to move manufacturing to Vietnam...

That said, that still leaves a lot of skilled engineers being laid off.

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There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES

big_D
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Mostly local

we watch mostly locally produced stuff (around 85%). Germany does a lot of its own production and having a German family, we tend to watch a lot of German produced content, especially TV films and soaps - well, the girls watch the soaps and I don't get to use the remote when the soaps are on... :-S

Watched a great French film last night as well l'immortel.

That said, there is very little on television that I would go out of my way to watch - and, apart from NCIS, I can't think of a single US series where I have actually watched more than a couple of episodes in the last decade.

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Cave pits, ideal for human bases, FOUND ON MOON

big_D
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Re: Probably not that big a probe needed

Felix Baumgartner, a couple of GoPros and a long bungi cord?

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Google shows off new Chrome OS look

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Looks very

1990s UNIX at first glance.

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Office 365's free terabyte leaves Amazon's Glacier melting

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Re: Productivity Suite?

The ribbon takes a week or so to get used to, but I find it very effective. I certainly find it frustrating when I go back to Office 2003 or OpenOffice / LibreOffice.

Is the ribbon perfect? No.

Is the ribbon better than menus? Depends on how married to the old style menus you are.

I certainly found that after an initial productivity fall off to learn the new system, that it climbed back to be better than before. Certainly mouse based applications, like PowerPoint benefit more than Word, but I find I can get to things quicker now with the ribbon than searching through menus and dialogs of old for rarely used features. I still use the keyboard shortcuts for most things.

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Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS

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Good, then in your case, artificially driving up the electricity bill...

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EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'

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Re: Facebook

Any website that has any business in the EU is affected, so yes. You can request the reference is removed or failing that, that it does not appear when searching for your name.

As Facebook isn't covered under freedom of the press, they would probably have to remove the article completely, as opposed to de-listing it from search results of your name.

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Re: but

That isn't always possible. It should certainly be the first stop.

But for accredited press sites, the freedom of the press has priority, as long as the information cannot be proven to be inaccurate. Therefore the person has to resort to the search engines to ask that the article doesn't appear when searching for their name.

That way, if say you had been wrongfully arrested for murder, the news sites couldn't remove it, because it is was accurate news at the time - you were arrested on suspicion of murder. However if you were released and a police apology made, but the arrest is still the first thing that is returned for your name after 10 years, even if you have since then been in the headlines as a philanthropist, then you would have the right to have that article not returned when searching for your name, because it is not relevant or no longer relevant.

If you search for "arrests of suspected murderers", it will probably still appear in the list, but you would have to sift it out of the millions of returned results.

The idea is to reduce the impact on your reputation from "no longer relevant" information, whilst still having the information available for those that really want to find it.

So a prospective employer won't find that you were wrongfully arrested by searching for your name, but somebody doing research into the murder itself would still find the article.

Think about it in terms of the traditional press. After its immediate publication everybody who reads the paper knows you were arrested, because it was on the front page. You are released and a small article on page 12 announces you were released without charge...

A few years later, most people won't remember either article and it shouldn't influence your job chances, for example. But an author writing a book on the case can still go to the newspaper archive and dig out all the articles regarding the murder itself, including the articles on your arrest and subsequent release.

In effect it is a way of maintaining the status quo in a time when information is becoming harder and harder to forget, whether it should be forgotten or not.

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