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* Posts by stucs201

944 posts • joined 20 Feb 2010

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Marty McFly wannabes face disappointment with the Hendo Hoverboard

stucs201
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Re: Hover? Possibly. Controlable? Probably not.

They already have some reasonably convincing video of a remote control steerable hovering thing. Certainly looks good enough control for the RC toy market.

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stucs201
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Well it might have limitations...

...but this is still unusually on-time for the arrival of the future. Even with the limitations BTTF2 is looking like it might be more accurate than much of Tommorow's World ever was.

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Really... an iKeyfob? Apple continues war on fanbois' pockets

stucs201
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WTF?

"Unlocking a door can require additional time that it lengthens a total commute duration"

If your journey is so short that the time to unlock the car door is at all a consideration in how long it takes then why are you using the car at all? If a second or two is significant then the journey is so short (a few metres?) that it'd be as quick to walk.

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Doctor Who and the Dalek: 10-year-old tests BBC programming game

stucs201
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Re: I wouldn't teach Java either.

Java does have one merit when it comes to teaching kids:

Kids love Minecraft.

Since that and mods for it are written in Java then Java at least has merits from the motivation side, which is also important if you want the kids to actually be interested and take any notice.

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stucs201
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re: Never got enough time with the turtle

Any would have been an improvement. I'm fairly sure the school had one, but it was one of many bits of hardware than hardly saw the light of day and spent much of their time locked away.

The turtle was hardly alone in being kept away from most (or even all) of the kids though. The ST in the music dept. was pretty much exclusively for the use of the small handful of kids who played multiple instruments (most of whom had zero interest in computers). I think I saw it once (and then only because a friend who did go on to be a professional musician let me into the closest where it was kept). The ST wasn't the worst though - as far as I'm aware the Z88 and the PPC640 were personal toys for the computer teacher and were never allowed into pupil's hands.

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Bono apologises for iTunes album dump

stucs201
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Re: Lucky me

Lack of current payment info will do the trick. For some reason if all they have on file is an expired card they won't let you have the "free" thing.

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SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION

stucs201
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Black Helicopters

Does it actually do anything

Or is it's "secret, but not totally secret" nature just intended to distract from something else and waste the resources of other countries trying to work out what it's up to?

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Shift up, gran! Microsoft turns living room into AR game 'space'

stucs201
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Re: You do know what LSD is the acronym for ?

Hmmm, that's a bit of an Enigma. Love, Sensuality, Devotion?

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What’s the KEYBOARD SHORTCUT for Delete?! Look in a contextual menu, fool!

stucs201
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Getting harder to transition from mouse to keyboard

I find that the switch from drop-down menus to ribbons in Windows software doesn't help. With the menus you tended to have the shortcut displayed alongside the text in the menu, so common ones would eventually start to register without actively trying to learn them. Other operations I'd find myself navigating the menu via the keyboard, for example I couldn't tell you if Word has a keyboard shortcut to Insert a Picture from a File, but I know Alt+IPF will do the trick.

With the ribbon I don't find it nearly as natural to pick up shortcuts this way, I actively have to look to see what they are.

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stucs201
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Re: Keyboard commands for select, copy, paste and find

My favourite is when a (Windows) program opens a window in the wrong place, so that it is (or at least its title bar) is off-screen. There are times I think I'm the only person who knows about Alt-Space M to move a window using the keyboard. Surprisingly Alt-Space is fundamental enough it even works for TIFKAM (though M is Maximize there, since there is no Move).

I even remember baffling people when the last remaining computer in a lab at university had a broken mouse, but was running Windows. I'd not even sat down at it when someone told me not to bother, I told them I didn't need it and got on with what I needed to do via the keyboard.

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One Windows? How does that work... and WTF is a Universal App?

stucs201
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Re: It depends on the app

For complex things I agree, it needs tuning to the device. For simple things it just needs to fill the entire screen on a phone and run in a small window in the corner on a desktop. I'm thinking of the sort of utility which people used to code as 'gadgets' (before MS effectively killed them).

Then there is the (admitedly niche at the moment) case of devices like the Surface Pro. These provide a case for more complex programs which can adapt themselves. It'd be nice to not have to have two versions of the same program and instead have one adapt itself depending on whether it was in tablet mode with just the touchscreen or pllugged into multiple external monitors with a mouse connected.

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Microsoft WINDOWS 10: Seven ATE Nine. Or Eight did really

stucs201
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I wonder what the true version number will be?

Just a .1 increment to 6.4 ? A whole number jump to 7.0? Or will they finally resync and make it 10.0.

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stucs201
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Dammit, I shouldn't have stopped to read the article before posting that myself. Have a thumb,

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Ice, ice maybe: Evidence of 'Grand Canyon' glacier FOUND ON MARS

stucs201
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Re: Schrödinger's glacier

Too risky to send a cat; Curiosity will kill it.

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stucs201
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Re: maybe they could find my compact camera I lost somewhere around the house...

Perhaps, but that might be difficult, so prepare yourself for the possibility it might stay lost - we don't want to put them Under Pressure.

(the one with the MP3 player full of Queen songs in the pocket)

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Mine Bitcoins with PENCIL and PAPER

stucs201
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Simpler is to start denying the rumours that it is broken. There don't even need to be rumours, the denials will start them if the denials sound suspicious enough.

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NASA rover Curiosity drills HOLE in MARS 'GOLF COURSE'

stucs201
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Re: Remember when deja vu applied to the past?

I finished re-reading it yesterday...

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Inateck BP2001 Bluetooth speaker: The metalhead sysadmin's choice? Not exactly

stucs201
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Portable speakers?

Old Panasonic radio cassette player. Couple of quid for a headphone to twin phono cable to connect to iPod. Tape deck makes a reasonable 'docking space'. Runs forever on a set of D-cells when it doesn't have the tape motors to run.

I'll replace it when it breaks - that might be never given how long its lasted so far.

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Microsoft on the Threshold of a new name for Windows next week

stucs201
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If they want to boost sales.

They could call it Windows XP2. Of course this trick will only work once unless it happens to be a really good version.

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Alien gimp gag or cosmic golf ball? NASA tackles question everyone's asking

stucs201
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True mission objective

So there are already balls there, and now they're drilling holes and have had to negotiate sandy patches where they might get stuck?

This is just a plan to turn Mars into a golf resort isn't it?

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How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?

stucs201
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Re: Cats etc...

Reminds me of an idea I once had for a short SF story about aliens turning up to complain that just because we couldn't hear what we were compressing out of our broadcasts that it didn't mean they couldn't.

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Apple: SO sorry for the iOS 8.0.1 UPDATE BUNGLE HORROR

stucs201
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Re: On the plus side, maybe their HealthKit apps are working better now?

They can monitor their walk to the nearest phone box (which might be quite a distance these days).

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Range Rover to fit trendy new SUV with FRIKKIN' LASER HUDs

stucs201
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Re: And who needs a reminder of what gear they are in?

On road? Not that useful, but no harm in it.

Off road (this thing does have a Land Rover badge after all), I can see it would perhaps be useful. Its harder to judge from the sound the car is making in a non-standard situtation. Admitedly its going to be a few years before most Evoques see any real mud - they'll go through a few owners first before they reach that part of the second-hand market.

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What the 4K: High-def DisplayPort vid meets reversible USB Type C

stucs201
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Er, I think you mean "then he told me he had three of the expensive ones at home."

Whether he actually had them or not is a different matter

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SpaceX blasts a mischief of mice, a 3D printer and a cuddly toy* into SPAAAACE

stucs201
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Re: small sailing boat

Hmmm, get some transparent material and 3D printing a ship in a bottle could avoid all that tedious mucking about with folding sails.

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stucs201
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re: mouse organ

That only needs 6 : Charliemouse, Eddiemouse, Janiemouse, Jenniemouse, Lizziemouse and Williemouse.

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THE DEATH OF ECONOMICS: Aircraft design vs flat-lining financial models

stucs201
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Cartoons explain it all

The economy, especially share dealers and house owners are Wyle E Coyote. They will with regularity walk off cliffs, initially quite sucessfully - enough to get away from where they might grab back on and get back to safety, they'll get to where the only option is a massive and painful plummet.

When will they fall? When someone fills Roadrunner role (generally with a lot of help from the press) of pointing out that they're in a bad place. At this place panic will set in, breaking the illusion that there is anything under their feet, hastening the fall.

Like Wyle E Coyote they'll then do the equivalent of buying yet another gadget from ACME, despite having seen the results of every other time thats been tried.

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Microsoft splurges 2½ INSTAGRAMS buying Minecraft maker Mojang

stucs201
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Re: a bribe to release a version for Surface.

It runs just fine on a Surface Pro as it is. An RT version is mostly needing an RT version of Java first...

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Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM

stucs201
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Re: can it run Crysis?

Maybe not this one, but if things carry on the way they're going then no doubt we'll eventually get printers that can. Why can this one even run Doom? I was at university when it came out, there were about a dozen computers on the entire campus that could run it playably. Just what exactly does a printer need this much processor power for?

Even ignoring that security would be less of an issue if it couldn't do anything except print (well except perhaps for printers armed with frickin lasers), we've been warned where this path of putting more processor power than needed ends - talking AI toasters that won't accept you want something else for breakfast.

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Not pro Bono: Apple's audio junk mail made spammers' lives easier

stucs201
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Re: They won't let me have it.

Hadn't seen the none option. Could be useful if there is free stuff I do want in future. Not going to bother updating them with a valid address that they don't need though.

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stucs201
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They won't let me have it.

Even though it's free they'll only download it if I give them current payment information. Mine is several debit cards an two house moves out of date. It can stay that way, my one iTunes purchase was the click-wheel version of Tetris in 2007.

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SanDisk's record-busting 512GB SD CARD will fit perfectly in your empty wallet

stucs201
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Re: Waterproof...

It might...

http://www.engadget.com/2011/11/27/canon-eos-1000d-washes-ashore-sd-card-reveals-it-was-lost-at-se/

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Slap my Imp up: Bullfrog's Dungeon Keeper

stucs201
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Re: Must be a bit too old...

I'd agree that to be properly old school a game needs to be 8-bit.

Even including PC game though this is pushing what I'd consider a boundary - the move from DOS to Windows. I seem to recall this came with versions for both (so I'll have installed the DOS version, DirectX was still very troublesome at the time).

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Why Apple had to craft a pocket-busting 5.5in Plus-sized iPhone 6 (thank LG, Samsung etc)

stucs201
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Re: comparative pictures

I still actually use a flip phone from that time (considered under-specified at the time, but way better than any current flip phone). Its height is about the same as the width of many current phones.

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stucs201
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Surely there are two sides to the size thing?

While some won't have been buying Apple phones because they want a big screen, surely others will have been buying them because they prefer a smaller (*) device. Isn't this likely to be a case of swings and roundabouts?

((*) relatively speaking, it seemed huge compared to the tiny phones in existence when it first launched)

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Apple's ONE LESS THING: the iPod Classic disappears

stucs201
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Re: or manage which 60gb

If I wanted to be swapping music in and out of the car I'd still have a CD changer, not a device which can hold everything and only needs to come out when I buy new music.

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stucs201
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Just when I thought they were returning to a click-wheel style interface

At least that's what the 'digital crown' thingy on their watch reminds me of.

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TV techies proudly display their MIGHTY BENDERS in Berlin

stucs201
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Re: Bendy, why?

The point? Its all very simple:

Curved ones are to persude us to buy a new flat one while we still can.

Bendy ones are so we can straighten them out when flat ones aren't around anymore.

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Hawking: Higgs boson in a BIG particle punisher could DESTROY UNIVERSE

stucs201
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re: bottle caps

Thats a job for beer mats.

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stucs201
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larger than Earth, and is unlikely to be funded in the present economic climate

And the size relative to the Earth or our current budgets affects more advanced dyson sphere building (*) civilisations building one how? Admitedly we can't do much about it if they do.

(*) example only, the practicalities of that is a separate discussion.

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Boffins hunch over steaming cups of coffee to find HIDDEN SECRETS of caffeine

stucs201
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You're new here aren't you? Or at least don't visit much.

Boffin is el Reg's prefered term for proper scientists.

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Size matters – how else could Dell squeeze 15 million pixels into this 27" 5K monitor?

stucs201
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Re: Sounds nice but

Fair point.

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stucs201
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Re: Sounds nice but

Actually since an obvious market for this sort of resolution is photographers perhaps they should go for 3:2 - the same as a DSLR sensor.

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stucs201
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Re: What's the point?

The point?

Remember the mega-pixel wars with cameras? How everyone asked what was the point of getting an image your monitor couldn't display?

Well here's a monitor for displaying them...

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Ferraris, Zondas and ... er, a bike with a 500hp V10 under the saddle

stucs201
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Re: fugly

They're not all ugly.

I'm sure thats an E-Type Jag in the line-up. Lovely car, I just wish I'd had longer the one time I got to play with one. First thing I was told on getting into it was that it didn't have traction control, ABS or anything else I might be used to - suits me just fine :)

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stucs201
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Re: I like the mini

Really don't know whether to hit thumbs up or thumbs down (so will refrain from either). On the one hand I agree with your comments on BMW's other "mini's", but I don't like this one either.

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Huawei 'beats' Apple to bag sapphire smartie bragging rights

stucs201
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Neither of these are first.

Vertu have been using saphire screens for years for both smart and dumb phones.

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eBay, Facebook, Tumblr ALL go TITSUP in me-too MULTI-FAIL

stucs201
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My computers has been warning me about the military reading my files since the days of MSDOS. someone called General Failure.

(the one with the floppy disk in the pocket)

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Pimp my lounge and pierce my ceiling: Home theatre goes OTT

stucs201
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Some potential benefit from atmos without more speakers

For home use the most interesting aspect of atmos might not be that it supports extra speakers, but that it can encode based on where sound should come from, not which speaker - re-mixing at playback time based on where the speakers are.

Given that many surround systems installed in a living room won't have ideal speaker placement this opens up the possibility of making better use of the speakers that are there with only a receiver change. This of course assumes that the receiver has some way to specify where you've put the speakers, rather than assuming they're in their nominal positions.

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