96 posts • joined 26 Mar 2010
Never mind Big Trak
I had a Computacar in about 1970, authentically programmed with a punched card, just like a 'real' computer. Took it apart as a teen to understand how it worked, and was disappointed to realise it was entirely mechanical.
I also had a Sharp PC1500, probably in '86 or '87 that I programmed to calculate radioactive content of the tracer I was using at the time (Chromium 51) for some assay work. It is probably the only time I've ever really bothered to program anything remotely useful.
I was quite looking forward to trying 13.1, but there's a bug where menus and windows aren't drawn correctly, and show up temporarily when you mouse over, then disappear again. There were a few others reporting the same thing on the openSUSE forum, but the fixes given there didn't work. Possibly it's down to having an Nvidia card (7900GS) and might be fixed with a driver install, but I've not had time yet to try.
12.3 is still working OK so there's no hurry to upgrade.
Back in the spring I needed a cheap 'disposable' computer to take to Africa, and acquired a 7 year old Philips/Twinhead H12Y 12" laptop with 1.6GHz core 2 duo and 1Gb ram. Performance on the original Vista was laughable (10min to a ready desktop) but both Pear Linux and LinuxLiteOS gave entirely acceptable performance, LLOS being similarly responsive to my unibody Macbook with 4Gb and SSD running OSX 10.8. And LLOS is Steam ready.
Since the lad likes the idea of a Mac, something like Pear might have quite appealed - shame the battery died.
Although the iPad isn't really more than a consumer device, people liked them so much they tried to find ways of bringing them to work, thereby fooling Microsoft into believing in a market that doesn't really exist. And the other area of fail is that screen - working professionals do not like 16:9 as a screen ratio, as laptop reviews here have shown over and over again. The right size for a business laptop is about 14" with a 16:10 ratio. Giving this a 10" screen that's long and narrow is automatic failure for this market.
It's a shame that Microsoft's marketing dept has completely overlooked market research basics (or someone higher up the slippery pole refused to be told) and the result is a product that's potentially good, failing. By approaching marketing differently and fixing the screen ratio, even if they couldn't make it larger, this could have seen much more success. By making the new user experience as pleasant as that with a new Apple device they could have seen more still.
Microsoft has always been like this - I wonder if they'll change or disappear? Labcoat because they're still looking for the answer.
Ads have become a REAL problem, and are no longer an innocent way of funding bandwidth etc. Sourceforge has been like this quite a while, and as suggested, other 'legitimate' companies are now bundling crapware along with the stuff you want (Adobe - looking at you).
There's a forum I use regularly (harmonycentral.com) that runs syndicated ads, and recently there was one that a) spawned a new page within seconds of arriving b) started playing audio automatically and c) spawned a new page every 30sec with the audio out of sync with the first. Within a few minutes the site became unusable without ad blockers working.
I always took the view that ads funded the 'free' sites many of us enjoyed, but this was madness. I mentioned it to the forum admins, but they were not aware of the ads being run (syndicated out, choices made elsewhere). There have been problems on other sites with flash-based ads too, although none as severe as this. So now I just run with ad blockers on all the time. It's not good, because I'm sure it's denying a revenue stream, but it's either that or stop browsing many otherwise useful parts of the net.
I can see the golden goose laying in the corner, throat cut.
It *looks* like a really good design let down by budget internals. Pity really. I'm loth to spend several hundred quid on a powerful mobile computing device when I already have several in varying sizes around the home, but if this had a spec that was competitive with the latest Nexus then I'd have been seriously tempted. Shame really, though probably a good thing for my bank balance.
The obvious parallel between the car and the software is like someone who has only used Android phones trying to write a document in Appleworks on a ][e. When it was run of the mill stuff, many of us happily produced documents and spreadsheets in this particular package, and back in the 70s and 80s we happily drove Citroen GSs without the least difficulty (until the cams wore badly, in which case it would get unbearably slow). The analogy breaks down because, unlike the Appleworks interface, those in the GS and CX were actually very nice to use, even though unconventional by Ford standards.
Nice to be reminded of how stylish cars looked once upon a time.
I've been using openSUSE for a few years now, on and off: on with it being an excellent place to move from windows, the off being that it used to break with increasing numbers of updates and that encouraged experimenting with other distros. Having been mostly off for a while using Sabayon first (that would also break with updates, due to kernel/graphics driver incompatibility) and then Pear linux (getting too Mac-like) I returned to openSUSE 12.3 this spring.
It's been great. I love to tools baked into KDE, updates have been pretty much problem-free, and everything has kept working quickly and reliably. Looking forward to this next update and continuing with the OS into the future.
Galling the darn thing isn't available yet though. We have plenty of clubcard vouchers, and this would be so much better than a typical £60 tablet.
Excellent and unexpected twist at the end - thank you.
Quite. 1366 X 768 on a 13" screen is shoddy these days, although I'd be happy with the MBAs 1440 X 900. 16X10 and a decent vertical resolution are so much better for work. One of the things that puts me off upgrading my current 2008 macbook (1200 X 800) is the lower vertical resolution that so many otherwise good non-apple machines have.
So is the state of release rather like a certain feline presence, and it is only there if you know it's there?
"I find your lack of faith disturbing".
Not quote up to BOFH standards, but entertaining as a Friday afternoon read.
There's something terribly Arthur Dent-like about this situation.
"Could we, for a moment, assume that my client is still securely locked in the embassy, so that it won't make any difference to you if we nip across to the pub for a pint and a quick fumble with the barmaid".
Excellent - there was a sense of eager anticipation from the moment the word 'delete' was first used.
Sherlock Holmes, because he'll be called in to find the missing backup.
It may be portable, but £170 will be an insurmountable hurdle. From the description of the sound quality and issues with the app I was expecting £40-£50. Maybe that's unreasonable, but I can't imagine there being much take up at that price.
I was very tempted by the 808 back at the beginning of the year when I replaced my phone. What killed it for me was the poor screen res and sheer bulk of the thing - a smartphone is more than just a camera that can be used to make calls. The new top-end Nokias are too bulky and too expensive to compete (interesting at £320, not at £520) again regardless of how good the camera might be.
Much more likely it's Hollywood going after The Piratebay.
People have been noticing this kind of thing for quite some time. In the late 90s there were studies performed at Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen (Skakkabaek and Andersson - I'm too lazy to look up the references) showing that sperm levels in healthy males had fallen over the last 50 years.
Always wear a lab coat when handling clinical samples.
Thanks for that - a serious and useful reply!
I've also found the Razr i for £40 down and £15.50 a month, though having just closed my O2 contract iI'm a little reluctant to start a new one with them.
Interesting comments - I'm looking for a new phone right now to replace my 'vintage' Desire. I've tried quite a few phones and current fave is the Razr i that the reviewer kept mentioning: great battery life, small enough to fit a pocket despite a 4.3" screen and it feels really well made.
But at the same time I'm really tempted by a WinPho8 device. The interface just seems so much cleaner, more intuitive, obvious and most importantly, easy to use. It seems like an interface designed for a touch screen, rather than a desktop system ported to a phone.
"MTP's big disadvantage is Mac OSX doesn't support it, which is slightly annoying but then probably a minority of users."
My contract is up tomorrow, and I'm on the verge of selecting a new phone. Presently a Mac user, though for how long is not certain, but I think this has just killed this phone for me.
Foot note should not be included in an otherwise excellent article. I've never worked in IT like that and yet it was still immediately obvious what the halon was for.
Will BB's natural target market - the workforce - be big enough now to save the company? Now you can bring your own devices to work it may not be enough.
Sounds good though.
Unfortunately most of these comments only illustrate that many don't feel adequate unless they demonstrate themselves superior to another human being.
The list isn't bad, although it's likely many will have already come bundled with the distro we've downloaded and used, or have equivalents depending on the DE of choice. Good point about antivirus, even though we don't need it. Everyone who's been using Linux for a little while will have developed their own preferences for doing different things, but lists like this are useful for making one review the tools they use and maybe trying some new ones.
Nice that many of these are graphical front ends to command line tools too. I'd never want the command line to be lost, but equally I'd not want to use it in normal day to day operation; your preference may be different and that's fine too. I suspect many who use Linux these days do so because they wanted freedom from feeling like they were being told just how things were going to be, rather than for technical reasons or wishing to escape the evil GUI.
Love "the size of the hammer".
I've never been able to understand the attraction of 'free software' that is of no use. but that people install anyway.
I also had an 'interesting' time helping a young friend reinstall windows on a 3 week old Tosh laptop. Windows installed in about 35min, but the Tosh crapware took literally 2 1/2 hours. There was a 1 second opportunity to abort the crapware installation before it went right ahead and did it regardless of user wishes. It seems that almost everyone is trying to foist garbage on (L)users these days.
Re: Orange are the same
Yes they are. When that started off I thought it seemed pretty good, and the grey line at the bottom of the youtube screen showed that data was loading in OK, albeit slowly. This is just what I see with my Orange connection, and frequently get buffering issues with youtube. I had assumed it to be a YT problem because it doesn't usually happen with Vimeo, but that may not be the case.
Rants can be good
I quite appreciate some of the reviews where the reviewer has been frustrated by a device and shows it quite openly instead of providing a bland, fact laden description - the Kindle Fire HD being the latest example I've seen. This gives a glimpse of 'real world' usage instead of regurgitating Which? magazine. Having said that, some hard numbers and performance comparisons ARE essential too.
Overall I like reg reviews, and have certainly found them useful.
95% of the increased data = junk
Glad I'm not the only one who thought this. Outside of facebook, twatter and instagram there are still people doing real work, creating documents and spreadsheets with value who need a proper 'office' environment. By all means create some kind of cut down integrated word processing arrangement for those with nothing to do, but leave the productive office suite alone.
These comments are funny, though a little sad. I wonder which of the Astra drivers reviewing cars from their desks have ever sat in the '98 version or will sit in (let alone drive) one of these.
I like the look of this one, and it's a car that I feel I could drive without embarrassment, where as the last one was so obviously a womans car. As for heritage, this one definitely has an early Porsche look to it, where as the older 'new' beetle was much more faithful to the later versions of the original beetle.
Thank goodness for cars that aren't all identical tin jelly moulds, painted silver and grey.
GO! seems most appropriate for a car review.
Looks like good value at £130 (with some kind of cashback deal) from ebuyer today.
At least they're only asking £650 instead of £950 for a machine of this spec. I'd still like to see a better res screen, so 1440 X 900 or 1440 X 1024 as alluded to above for that T43. This is a lot better than a budget £400 jobbie, even if they've saved money by using lower cost materials. By the time it reaches ebuyer I'd hope it will come come in sub £600. I could be seriously tempted for one as a replacement for this 4 YO Macbook.
Now that Apple's 13" Macbook will be about £1500 I suspect there will be more interest in the ultrabook market - if they can contain price growth and fit decent screens.
"“It is already extremely compelling for many customers to choose a tablet, in particular an iPad, over a PC,” he said. “When you look at the PC market, there is an enormous opportunity for Apple there.”"
No. But there could be compelling reasons why someone might choose a tablet format over a netbook, particularly if they write little and consume media in places where they would not naturally sit upright. An iPad (or other tablet) is not real competition for a PC because those devices have larger screens, better interfaces for control and input and may be connected to a greater range of peripherals.
Jacket pocket, because he should be looking for a clue.
This could be the best thing that ever happened to the presently stagnant ultrabook market, if only they can put professional screens into them instead of stupid consumer 1366X768 jobs.
I had always assumed the logo was deliberately chosen to resonate with the image of acquiring forbidden knowledge in Genesis. It would be something of a leap to view it as anti-Christian, although some will consider the use of religious symbology by anyone other than themselves 'blasphemy'.
As for those protesting about the use of a crucifix, you're coming off just like the very people you object to.
Another one bites the dust.
Or at least it will with that screen res.
I don't understand why we are still seeing 'ultrabooks' with this screen size. It simply doesn't fit the target market, and is wasting good development money.
People seldom like to learn to use new interfaces/desktops when the old familiar way to work is available to them. Remember the pain of migrating from W98 to 2000, of 2000 to XP? Ditto different versions of office etc. If you're a windows user, try working with OSX & vice versa. Very quickly you want to switch back to the old and familiar- the system you've developed workarounds for that are instinctive instead or awkward.
This isn't like the good old/bad old days where each iteration of OS brought useful new features & functions, nor is it a desperate fix for an OS that's somewhat broken. So to me, if 25% of new users actually favour W8 over W7 I'd say that's a pretty good sign. Hope there aren't a huge pile of screw-ups under the covers, just waiting to crawl out as soon at it gets mass release.
In my coat pocket, looking for a reason to upgrade.
With a screen res of 1366X768 it's another junk consumer laptop in an expensive ali shell.
There's a reason ultrabooks simply won't sell, and the screen is pretty much it. Windows 7 can't cope with a 1080P 13" screen and no business user with any respect (target market) wants that stupid consumer-res 16X9 screen. As Dave said above, 1280X800 is better for real work. I could probably use this lappy since I normally use a 1920 X 1200 external monitor, but when I'm working away every last pixel on height helps.
When WILL they learn?
What a curious non-story. This is no substitute for another BOFH tale you know.
If the HD+ is rootable then that would be serious iPad competition.
For those who view KOBO as competition for Amazon, we have a Touch, and it is often painfully slow and with the latest software 'updates' inclined to freeze randomly. Compared side by side in a store, the basic kindle and the touch seem to perform similarly, but out in the real world (after adding books and being forcibly ugraded) there is no comparison.
"the paper lost £54m last year - or £150,000 a day."
Well that's a good thing, because at least in a couple of years their business can shut down and stop pretending to contribute to society.
Strictly speaking it was product notification rather than review.
Wonder how much they will charge for the 1080p screen upgrade (wish they'd do 1440 X 900 as standard instead on a 13"/14" lappy).
"It features a 14in, 1366 x 768 display"
What's that smell? It is the scent of failure.
I'll have to have a look soon. KDE + speed sounds good to me.
Do they have fanboi detection built in before deciding to help you?
I bought a new Unibody Macbook end Dec 2008, and within a couple of months the mini-display port system for driving an external monitor failed. I took it to a genius bar and not only they would not accept there was a problem, but I was told that if they sent it away for 'testing' and nothing was found wrong then I would be charged. Despite paying £300 for an additional 2 years applecare. The problem was well known by the time I got there, the apple forums being full of others with similar problems.
It came back with a replacement Mobo.
Do they have some secret means of testing whether you're a fanboi before giving you this 'exemplary service' that some seem to get?
This helps explain why, when I took a 3 month old semi-functional Macbook to the 'genius' he was completely unable to acknowledge that it didn't work properly or was faulty, but instead would only send it away for investigation (if I was willing to pay if there was nothing found to be wrong, even though it also had applecare). And yes, other companies will do this sort of thing too (ever had a telesales call?).
"The high prices haven’t helped, of course, and there also seems to be some evidence that many people are turned off by the relatively small 13in screens"
That's completely face backwards. Likely customers of ultrabooks want a 13" screen with good vertical resolution - ideally 1440X900 until screen resolution management has been sorted out in Windows, and can cope with higher resolutions without munging text and icons. This device is exactly wrong, and convinces me that there is a mountain of old 1366X768 that they must use up before modernising their designs.
"Software, film and music distribution on CDs and DVDs is waning in favour of downloading across the Internet"
Not yet outside of America. Maybe 5 years for blighty and a bit more for a lot of Europe, but certainly not yet.
While it's no excuse to be smug, how can anyone who is familiar with computers possibly rely on the 'cloud' for backup.
- Vid Hubble 'scope scans 200,000-ton chunky crumble conundrum
- Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?
- Google offers up its own Googlers in cloud channel chumship trawl
- Interview Global Warming IS REAL, argues sceptic mathematician - it just isn't THERMAGEDDON
- Apple to grieving sons: NO, you cannot have access to your dead mum's iPad