* Posts by JDX

5923 posts • joined 28 May 2010

It was SPACECRAFT vs BOAT at ORION LAUNCH. The boat won

JDX
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Surely one of the first things proper space colonisation needs...

...is to be able to reliably take off when planned?

It's going to pretty crap when our first Mars colony receives an email "sorry, no food for 3 months, it's a bit windy here".

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Ten Linux freeware apps to feed your penguin

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Re: GIMP

>>In a world where everyone carries a camera phone, and "photoshop" has entered the dictionary, GIMP is hardly a niche app.

Everyone (thinks they) know what "photoshop" means/does but being able to use the thing is still niche.

The fact you seem to suggest Gimp/Photoshop are the right tools for the masses to use with their cameraphone photos only compounds the sense that either you don't know what you're talking about, or are an expert user totally out of touch with the majority of computer users.

GIMP is a high end tool for people who are prepared to put effort in to learning how the darn thing works.

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Re: GIMP

It's hardly an everyday tool for the masses. You might as well clamour for Blender or Audacity to be in the list - all 3 are great but all are a bit niche.

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One year on, Windows 8.1 hits milestone, nudges past XP

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There are some great 8.1 devices out there

Not so much the traditional laptops, but mini-laptops with touch screens and in some cases detachable screens. They start from really low prices (to me) as well - a full-blown Windows 8.1 Intel-based touch-screen laplet (is it a thing?) for £300 or less. Compared to an i5 or i7 they must be very underspecced but I was unexpectedly surprised how little you need to spend to get W8.1 running reasonably.

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Wikipedia won't stop BEGGING for cash - despite sitting on $60m

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Why an annual intrusive push?

Couldn't they just have a permanent bottom-bar, similar to those used for cookie notifications or "site feedback" - it would be noticeable but not intrusive.

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No wristjob, please, we're Apple fans: Just 10% would buy the Apple Watch

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With a v1 product, 10% take-up would be a big success story.

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Amazon DROPS next day delivery amid Cyber Monday MADNESS

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Re: Almost all of this is buying presents no?

Not really. Almost-always next-day delivery has rather changed my whole approx to buying stuff. If I am working (doing programming or on a DIY project) and find I need something, the fact I can just buy it and it turns up the next day is a massive boon. Compared to the old fashioned "wait and see when it will arrive" approach.

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Re: Prime was trumpeted as...

Given Amazon's normally excellent customer service, if lots of people start kicking up a fuss I wouldn't be surprised if they part-refunded subscription costs.

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I bet if you want to courier a parcel using DPD or RM directly you can get it next day, just like you could last week.

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Re: So does this affect Amazon Prime Members?

That's the fault of the couriers operating in your area, or more specifically the individual drivers, not anything specific to Amazon.

I am only a member for free next-day delivery - joined before they rolled out video streaming and jacked up the price. I'm not sure we'd stay at the higher price but if it's not even next-day shipping, what exactly is the point?

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Re: So does this affect Amazon Prime Members?

That's going to be fun for their customer service staff then :)

I don't see the connection to BF either. Why would a massive 1-day sales spike mean they cannot do next-day delivery for the whole of December - surely the BF sales are the problem not their normal day-to-day stuff?

I do note Amazon are now offering two new delivery options:

No Rush: it takes longer but they GIVE YOU money

Scheduled: pick a specific time for it to arrive

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Pebble: The brilliant stealth wearable Apple's Watch doesn't see coming

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"the steps counter was counting an arm flex as two steps"

Snigger

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Never fear, Glassholes – Intel to the rescue! 'New CPU' for tech-specs

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Re: Google should be awarded Nobel prize for driving innovation

You're confusing innovation with invention.

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Re: Google aren't doing this for humanitarian or altruistic reasons

Most of the great technological and medical advancements weren't. Or at least, weren't funded for those reasons, even if the people doing the R&D were.

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Randall Munroe: The root nerd talks to The Register

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Re: Monetization!

Since he said he left Nasa when his hobbies were bringing in more money, and that was several years ago when he was far less well known, I think we can assume he does OK.

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APPLE set to Air PLUS-SIZED iPAD – claims mag

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a 12-inch iPad as big as a dinner plate

Glad El Reg clarified this because I was about to say that if a 12" plate is standard, no wonder obesity is such a problem.

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Ten Mac freeware apps for your new Apple baby

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Re: You should try pressing ctrl in addition to cmd+shift+4

Yes that is what I generally do. But then you need a program ready to paste into... hence my question :)

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MSPaint equivalent?

Is there one bundled with OSX I've never spotted? If not, is there a de fact standard really basic tool for quick & dirty image editing?

I love the screenshot options in OSX - like Windows Snipping Tool but built in and better - but not being able to paste that directly into something is a PITA.

Suggestions? And yes I know Gimp is available but it's way overkill ;)

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F.Lux

My wife has something similar (maybe the same thing) on a Vista Laptop. It's quite weird just how red it goes in the evening.

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Tough Banana Pi: a Raspberry Pi for colour-blind diehards

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Re: Trademark Breach?

Apple is a fruit. Windows are on your house. Focus is something your eyes do.

However I thought Pi is by design an open spec, so other people could build them if they wanted?

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Beyond the genome: YOU'VE BEEN DECODED, again

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We're also the only species known to make pancakes.

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Re: Odd statement

I'd like to know which species tried and failed to decode their own genomes.

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Ten excellent FREE PC apps to brighten your Windows

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Paint.net

Is to MSPaint what NotePad++ is to notepad.

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Hi-torque tank engines: EXTREME car hacking with The Register

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Re: Top Gear feature two 'cars' with massive aircraft engines

I was going to mention Tog Gear too, though I couldn't remember the details.

Anyway, fascinating. Like Scrapheap Challenge on crack.

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Chromecast video on UK, Euro TVs hertz so badly it makes us judder – but Google 'won't fix'

JDX
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"it is very hard to accurately identify the incoming frame rate"

Really?

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JDX
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Maybe you should read the article again, a bit more carefully (the issue isn't the TV).

Although it does raise the question, when you use Netflix et al on a regular TV, does the TV know to switch the right frequency to avoid the same problem? How do you even find out what FPS iPlayer, NetFlix, Amazon, etc, use for their streaming content in the first place.

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What's MISSING on Amazon Fire Phone... and why it WON'T set the world alight

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Price

I don't even follow why the price is high. They have done brilliantly with the Kindle by keeping the cost low and the Kindle Fire range also offers a great spec for the cash. The idea with both being, you then buy content from Amazon. So why not follow the same patter with the phone, especially after they saw it tanked in the US?

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World of Warcraft then and now: From Orcs and Humans to Warlords of Draenor

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Classic

Forget this WoW crap, Warcraft was a great game and WC2 was a pure diamond of a game. I don't want to look now as I'll probably be dismayed, but at the time it was also very pretty, I loved the variation of forest and ice.

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Bryndzové halušky

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How could it not be good?

Potato, cheese, bacon... perfect

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Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search

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Re: I doubt DDG has anywhere near enough money to pay Mozilla at the rate that Google/Binghoo does.

DDG 'steals'/scrapes results from other search engines so I rather suspect choosing it as a default search engine would be a risky move both politically and pragmatically.

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Re: What! Have! They! Done?!

They will be now :)

Rather than Mozilla depending on Google to survive, suddenly Yahoo! is depending on Mozilla?!

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Re: Cue panic

You know, they might have improved it since 1998.

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Toyota to launch hydrogen (ie, NATURAL GAS) powered fuel cell hybrid

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Re: re:Electrolysis of brine produces as much chlorine as hydrogen

So if you try to electrolyse sea water this just happens, you can't prevent it as a by-product?

So if we wanted to use sea-water (I suppose only because there is so much of it) we'd have to desalinate it first? Is that feasible or would situating the plants near major rivers/lakes make more sense?

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re:Electrolysis of brine produces as much chlorine as hydrogen

Wikipedia claims seawater is about 3.5% NaCl by mass. Since NaCl is heavier than H2O, that means the molar ratio i.e. the volume of gasses produced is surely lower than 3.5%, not higher?

But none of that even matters. If you fully electrolysed 10% of a volume of water and dissolve chlorine/sodium back in, the remaining water's salt content is only increased by 10% regardless how much chlorine you have in terms of pure volume.

That's assuming you can dissolve the Cl+Na back in once they've been decomposed, of course.

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>>There's a lot of everything in seawater, including gold. The problem is getting it out. Very low concentration, thus very high processing costs.

Hydrogen is fairly prevalent in water on the other hand :)

As for releasing nasty gasses you could just dissolve them straight back in, without noticeably affecting the concentrations. I'd rather suspect even in the immediate vicinity, the differences would be very small though I don't have a clue how many mega-litres of water would be processed per day.

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re:Fusion EATS hydrogen to make helium, leaving less fuel for the car!

It doesn't eat very much of it though. We are not in short supply of the most prevalent element in the universe.

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Google bags OBSCENELY LARGE Times Square ad space for New Year's

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Re: Everybody knows about Coca-Cola, but they still have ads…

Everybody knows about them because they promote the brand so heavily.

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Blackpool hotel 'fines' couple £100 for crap TripAdvisor review

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Re: Simples...

If they take money from your CC, wouldn't you immediately go to the CC company and complain about an unauthorised payment?

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NASA launches new climate model at SC14

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Re: My quotes better than yours club

>>"Two years from now, spam will be solved." - Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, 2004

When did gmail come out? Since then, it has been 99% 'solved' for me (not only gmail but filters in general).

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Stephen King, William Gibson and The Quantum Moment

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Re: If you want to feel cheated by King...

I've always held that King simply can't write endings. I'm a huge fan but even his best books - even the 8 volume Dark Tower epic - either tail off or basically end with "The End?"

Speaking of TV adaptations, "Storm of the Century" was a great mini-series that never got massive publicity. I don't know if it was a book too but it's classic King, AND fits the TV very well. I only ever watched it on Chinese VCD!

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Re: Sounds like a good batch

The thing about King is that even if you only like 10% of his books, that's still about 5x more than most authors write in total.

I had found more recent stuff a little tired (Duma Key) but Under The Dome was proper King to me - long, slow but somehow gripping regardless.

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Shoot to THRILL: Assassin's Creed: Unity and Halo: Master Chief Collection

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Re: Dear Mr Reviewer.

Out of interest how are you measuring fps on your consoles?

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Bible THUMP: Good Book beats Darwin to most influential tome title

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Yes, it is a shame. They haven't understood it properly, and are partly responsible for the mainstream view of Christianity being preachy and judgemental; the "Dot from Eastenders" stereotype. But it's again unfair to use that generalisation, when so many others are out feeding the poor and advocating for the helpless at the grassroots level. But of course you only want to mention negatives as that supports your viewpoint. In fact, "The Church" has caused great good and great harm throughout history.

You might as well say all IT folk are arrogant borderline autism sufferers based on stereotypes and vocal minorities on internet forums - in reality most are fairly normal.

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Re: Dawkins

Um, I AM speaking for others... based on things they've said, not based on me not liking Dawkins myself. On geeky IT forums, where religion discussions are generally pretty one sided, he normally attracts more criticism than praise.

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Re: Most people who 'like' the Bible

Those two points weren't linked? You weren't suggesting others who read it wouldn't reach the same conclusion?

If not, fair enough my mis-comprehension.

Although becoming an atheist because you don't believe one religion's teachings seems a little narrow. That sounds more like "I don't WANT it to be true" rather than "I strongly believe it's not"?

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Re: Robert Long

"I have to wonder if this is true. The book is so obviously just bad folklore and contradictory nonsense mixed with flat out lies"

Oh yes, it's "obvious". And clearly I'm just lying, because nobody could possibly have a different viewpoint than you based on the same facts. All those centuries of debate, and some IT nerd has the arrogance to suggest "it's obvious".

I rather doubt you bothered to read the thing or read books around the subject because it's so obvious that would be a waste of time, right?

This reminds me of a non-technical person "what do you mean it will take 2 weeks for this feature, you just have to do this one thing. It's obvious"

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Re: Most people who 'like' the Bible

While I commend you for reading it and making an informed decision, it's reaching to suggest your experience speaks for others. For instance I approached it as an atheist determined to analyse what it actually taught, and went the opposite direction to you... but I don't claim that would happen to everyone.

I think quite a lot of people set out to read it to prove their pre-determined ideas about religion - from either side - are right. It's actually quite hard to read it from a neutral/objective point of view - because like it or not things that resonate jump out at you.

But I agree most people who would say the bible is important have no idea what it says!

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Re: Dawkins

Really? Even most of the atheists I know find him and his works irritating biased and smug!

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As an actual 'bible-bashing' Christian, "contains principles and guidelines to be a good person” is not what the bible is about. That's a massively watered down, namby-pamby don't-want-to-offend-anyone interpretation tied to the middle-England idea of Jesus as a friendly white bloke with flowing blond locks who went round telling people nice things about themselves.

Having said that, "seriously awful things in the bible" is also rather disingenuous.

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Neither of those are in the bible. At the very least you have paraphrased them. And you've done the usual thing of make some statement about the bible without providing references, knowing most people will blindly believe you (ironic in the circumstances).

That aside, you can play that game - cherry-picking sentences or shorter out of context - with just about any source. The papers like to do it all the time, as do politicians.

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