* Posts by Dave 126

4340 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Tooled-up Ryobi girl takes nine-inch grinder to Asus beach babe

Dave 126
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My mate owned a Hitachi disc cutter for his work. When it refused to work one day, he was looking at a £60 repair bill. As a stop-gap, he bought a Lidl home-brand disc cutter for £50, and it's served him well so far.

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Sony Xperia Z2: 4K vid, great audio, waterproof ... Oh, and you can make a phone call

Dave 126
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Re: Very nice piece of kit.

I use headphones for music, but I often use my phone's built-in speaker for listening to podcasts when it won't disturb other people.

That said, small Bluetooth speakers seem pretty cheap these days, for podcast duties. I personally would prioritise waterproofing over speaker volume.

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Dave 126
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Re: 4k

Er, I'd have thought that capturing video at 4K allows more scope for removing shakiness in post-production, especially if you're only really looking to output 1080 video. Cropping to 'zoom' is another option that capturing at a high res allows you.

C'mon JDX, you're normally one of the sensible ones here!

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True optical zoom coming to HTC smartphone cameras

Dave 126
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Re: Yes, no doubt. And no - no possible way

That's the lovely thing, there are different cameras to choose from the trade-off between image quality, size and versatility.

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Dave 126
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Re: 90 degrees

Panasonic have done that too with their 'folded lens' cameras, including the TZ1, that twin-lens stereoscopic camera, and I think their 'tough' compact cameras.

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Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast

Dave 126
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If in doubt...

... about whether your phone will work, then XDAforums is a good place to check. It will appear high in the Google results for "[My Phone Model] USB OTG support" anyhows.

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Dave 126
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Re: I don't get it. Can someone answer if you have one?

Exactly. Reports of using USB thumb drives with a microUSB > Female USB A cable suggest that thumbdrives vary in their power consumption... i.e, some work with phones, but some just don't.

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Samsung files patent for ear-mounted Google Glass competitor

Dave 126
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Reminds me of...

.. those devices people wear behind their ear that sounds an alarm if they start to fall asleep whilst driving.

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Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ

Dave 126
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Re: Take note US

Oh, the arts and GCHQ...

http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/gallery/2014/apr/14/new-banksy-mural-near-gchq-depicts-agents-listening-in-on-phone-box

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Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully

Dave 126
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Re: I wonder...

Re: I wonder... ...interesting Boeing and Rolls Royce are very quiet on this.

Not really. RR often take real time telemetry from their engines in service, and when fitted to Boeing aircraft this service is combined with Boeing's offering of real time data to the airline, to better plan service schedules. However, it an option offered to airlines at extra cost, so is only present on about 75% of that model of Boeing.

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Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style

Dave 126
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>It's interesting that the android top end appears to be a three-horse race this time out. The S5 vs the M8 vs the Z2.

Just as it was a race between Sony, HTC and Samsung this time last year... with LG seemingly out of sync, since they released their G2 several months after the other 'flagships', though it was the first phone to sport a Snapdragon 800 SOC. There's every chance its successor will be announced before too long.

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Dave 126
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Re: Wot? No wireless charging?

Or even just two external contacts on the phone and a charging cradle, which is the solution Sony took with their waterproof Xperia Z to minimise faffing with a port cover.

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Dave 126
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Re: Tough choice

Alas, as a business model the idea of giving away a fairly pricey bit of hardware that is of interest to only a fraction of customers of the phone is not a good one.

I would hazard a guess that most of us would prefer them to drop the rice of the handset instead, so it is more in line with the likes of the Nexus 5 or LG G2 (around £300 to £350 which both feature much the same SOC as the S5)

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Dave 126
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Re: Tough choice

>As far as I can see basically nothing interesting (technically) has happened in the mobile phone world for the last couple of years.

Nothing too exciting, I agree, but the steady improvements in speed, battery life and waterproofing etc are welcome nonetheless. The need for vendors to differentiate themselves in more subtle ways (better cameras, high definition audio, microSD support, removable batteries) has lead to more mature, polished products- albeit ones that are in essence much the same as handsets from a few years ago.

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Dave 126
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>The resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels is the same as the Galaxy S4

I can get that resolution in a phone, but not in a laptop? There'll be cats and dogs living together next.

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FTC: OK Facebook, swallow WhatsApp – but NO selling people's data without permission

Dave 126
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Re: Another

Have a look at Telegram:

https://telegram.org/faq#q-why-should-i-trust-you

I haven't used it myself, but it looks promising.

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Dell Wyse Cloud Connect: Pocket Android desktop

Dave 126
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Re: Sounds like typical Dell...

>until Apple comes along and does it properly.

Who knows? Apple could, if they wanted to, do it well. But the same goes for other companies, too. Amazon, for example, have just relased the Fire TV - but they want to sell movies, so its Android fork is not geared towards touchscreens, mice or keyboards.

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Apple to flush '£37bn' down the bog if it doesn't flog cheapo slabtops

Dave 126
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Re: Sounds like an eMate

The eMate, Apple's first use of translucent plastic. Basically, a Newton with a keyboard aimed at the educational market. My old school had one, didn't know what to do with it.

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Dave 126
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Re: ARM vs x86?

>There are important applications where the Mac versions are very inferior to the Windows, e.g. Dragon Naturallyspeaking Legal.

Many CAD packages are for Windows only, too, not to mention many games. Okay, the starting price for Apple hardware with discrete GPUs is pretty high, but where else can I get a laptop screen that isn't 16:9?

Re OSX on ARM, I don't think it will happen for quite a while, if at all, for the reasons posters have put above. However, I'd be surprised if Apple didn't have a small team working on it, 'just in case'. After all, it had been testing versions of OSX on Intel more or less since its outset, to allow the company some agility.

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Danes debut Bluetooth-connected 'made for iPhone' hearing aids

Dave 126
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Re: What's new? @Dave 126

>But three grand for what is a digital hearing aid with Bluetooth and an app seems quite a lot.

Agreed, it does... until one becomes familiar with the general cost of other medical equipment that is made in relatively (compared to mobile phones) low volumes, or even the high price of some accessibility software The price will come down though, as more units are sold, and as the components get cheaper.

One regular in my local pub's beer garden, a retired GP, was singing the praises of a new hearing aid he got last year. The improvement over the old one, as he put it, is that he could now attend classical music concerts. His old hearing aid picked up on background noise in such a way as to make such social events unbearable for him. Effectively, it was akin to artificial tinnitus, a disorder that in its natural form has driven some people to suicide.

For those with the money, such improvements are well worth the asking price.

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Dave 126
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Normalisation of hearing aids/protectors

Just some thoughts on making hearing aids 'normal':

Many people are beginning to wear ear-plugs to live music concerts - costing a little more than the the earplugs you might wear in a workshop, they are designed to attenuate all frequencies evenly, so as to reduce the volume without colouring the sound.

The musicians on stage often have discreet, custom fitted IEM (in-ear-monitors) to protect the hearing upon which their livelihood depends.

People wear spectacles to correct their vision. People wear sunglasses to prevent damage to their eyesight in the first place - or to pretend that they look like rock stars.

Consumer IEMS are normally designed to be visible as a fashion accessory, just as many people wear spectacles with larger than necessary arms.

I occasionally use my IEMs as earplugs when in a loud environment.

Maybe their is a market for a consumer device for both protecting hearing, and for listening to music - or for chatting to people in loud nightclubs.

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Dave 126
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Re: What's new?

>you could also buy a landfill android phone built specifically with a small screen and a large battery

Landfill Android devices don't tend to have Bluetooth LE. AOSP only supported BLE a couple of versions ago, though some higher-end Samsung Android devices sported the hardware earlier.

>I would have thought that it would be possible to get similar behaviour at a fraction of the cost using an app and a normal high quality bluetooth audio device designed for listening to music, rather than phone calls.

It wouldn't. These hearing aids contain microphones themselves (not just supporting the use of the mics in the iPhone), as well as containing their own audio processors. All this, and they last for around five days between charges.

Basically, if you are using a device all day every day to help you with all aspects of your life, you don't want to compromise.

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Cheat Win XP DEATH: Little-known tool to save you from the XPocalypse

Dave 126
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Re: Dear author

>This is clearly utter horse manure. In order to install software in your VM of XP you still need to download software or copy data into it via network shares/usb pass through mass storage or whatever other means.

The author gave the caveat that the virtual XP machine should only be used to run the existing old software that won't play nice with Win7 etc. There is no point in installing *new* software onto the virtual XP machine, since new software can be installed onto the host OS, or another machine.

Also, the XP virtual machine's Virtual Hard Disk can be cloned and backed up - every ten minutes if desired.

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Dave 126
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Re: Or Another Way

I've looked at this approach, but I haven't tried it myself. This article looks promising:

Convert your existing Windows XP system into a virtual machine

"Using the vCenter Converter, I converted a live Windows XP system into a set of virtual machine files. I then copied those files over to a Windows 8 system and used VMware Player to run a fully functional Windows XP virtual machine."

http://www.techrepublic.com/pictures/convert-your-existing-windows-xp-system-into-a-virtual-machine/

I'd appreciate feedback from anyone here who has tried this technique.

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Dave 126
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Re: Danger Will Robinson

Yep, I looked into this approach a little while back.

Many people will be using XP machines that came with an OEM version of XP. Unlike retail versions of XP, the OEM licence can't be transferred to a different machine. Windows 7 Professional, of course, includes a valid XP license so this isn't an issue.

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Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app

Dave 126
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>Facebook has started informing users that they'll have to download the social network's separate Messenger app if they want to keep messaging from their mobile phones.

Er, users can still message from their phones by using the Facebook mobile website.

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USB reversible cables could become standard sooner than you think

Dave 126
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Re: Jack Off?

Use 'Sugru' to make a tactile guide for your fumbling fingers, perhaps.

Or use a USB hub.

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Dave 126
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Re: So now I will be able to go through three or four different types of cables

Well, you could buy a few short USB extension cables, or a USB hub... not ideal, but surely easier and cheaper than buying all new kit?

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Dave 126
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Re: Convenient

You could use a lower power device than a laptop for watching video or making slideshow presentations... then you can use MHL 2.0 (5 V DC/900 mA with MHL 2.0) to charge a device whilst watching video, or using an app.

MHL 3.0 can provide up to 10W.

Making every TV able to power every laptop, though occasionally convenient, isn't going to happen anytime soon. Maybe time to invest £30 on a Raspberry Pi, a Google Chromecast dongle, or some other media streamer?

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Reg slips claws across Nokia's sexy sixties handsets, fondles flagship too

Dave 126
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PS

The Sansa Clip+ lets yuou choose between Mass Storage or Media Device USB connection, so is compatible with everything.

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Dave 126
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Re: A question

You might conider a Sansa Clip+, available for as little as £27 for the 8GB model. It has a microSD card slot - and 32GB microSD cards works fine. The sound quality is excellent.

You can install the RockBox firmware to overcome any limits on the number of tracks.

If 40GB is not enough, buy another SD card, or hell, buy two Sansa Clips of different colours!

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Samsung slurps up full charge in 30 seconds with bio-battery

Dave 126
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Pass on that one. If the batteries are cheap to make from abundant materials and biodegradable, then it is less important if they need to be replaced annually.

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Bendy or barmy: Why your next TV will be curved

Dave 126
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Interesting...

... but personally, I'm more excited about TVs (and accompanying video capture) with high dynamic range output.

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/Dolby/HDD_First_Look_Dolbys_High_Dynamic_Range_Imaging_Technology/13453

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Dave 126
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Re: Designed to sell screens

It depends on the territory, maybe... it reminds me of the reviews of the first MS Kinect, with many UK reviewers suggesting the sensor was tuned to a larger living room than they possessed.

Purely anecdotal, but I get the impression many US homes are larger than UK houses.

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Dave 126
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Well, the over-the-top solution would be to have the the TV remain flexible, so that it can transform from a curved set (for a single or couple of viewers) into a flat set for family and party viewing.

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Too late, Blighty! Samsung boffins claim breakthrough graphene manufacturing success

Dave 126
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Professor Sir Andre Geim on Desert Island Discs, worth a listen:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/features/desert-island-discs

Not a man to mince his words, dark sense of humour, rejects the Bible and takes a cellar of wine... he's like a Reg Commantard, but cleverer.

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Tesla cars can now 'do an ET' without hurting anyone's bottom line

Dave 126
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"...off and on again"

CORRECTION:

I won't lose any sleep if I learn that somebody has pissed off/on Jeremy Clarkson.

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Dave 126
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Re: Oh noes...

>This should piss off a lot of people when they find out that Elon is watching them.

Eh?

CEO Elon Musk says: “Tesla data logging is only turned on with explicit written permission from customers, but after Top Gear BS, we always keep it on for media.”

I won't lose any sleep if I learn that somebody has pissed Jeremy Clarkson off.

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Your files held hostage by CryptoDefense? Don't pay up! The decryption key is on your hard drive

Dave 126
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>This does not make them idiots and deserving of being extorted, it makes them victims.

On a similar note, lay users aren't encouraged to back up their machines on an hourly basis... I mean, most PCs or laptops are sold with a single HDD, so they aren't designed for near-continuous back-up by default. For sure, this requires extra hardware (and cost) but PCs are pretty cheap these days, so it's an issue of educating the customer than an extra 20% cost is a worthwhile investment.

Does anyone know how prone HDDs and NASs attached to the PC are to this sort of malware?

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Get ready for software-defined RADAR: Jam, eavesdrop, talk and target ... simultaneously

Dave 126
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Re: Software Defined *.*

A very wise old man with a sense of irony, I assume?

'Generic Price Per Pound Calculation' [ of the Space Shuttle programme vs one-use launchers:

http://www.futron.com/upload/wysiwyg/Resources/Whitepapers/Space_Transportation_Costs_Trends_0902.pdf

The Space Shuttle wasn't the cheapest way of getting mass into orbit.

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Apple poking at idea of bayonet phone fittings

Dave 126
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Re: Not the point of the patent

>But it exists to overcome a basic problem, which is the fragility of the iPhone.

Er, if you have enough leverage, *anything* is fragile. That's just physics. "Give me a long enough crowbar, and I'll crush a Sherman tank" - to paraphrase some ancient Greek geezer.

In this case the problem is not so much the case material of the phone, but the small diameter of the bayonet mount around the lens (compared to that on an SLR, which in any case tend to be used more carefully and with straps, so less likely to be dropped)... again, just physics.

Okay, torque, or 'bending force' is directly proportional to the distance of the force to the fulcrum, hence the SI unit of Nm. Force X Distance. Adding an 80mm long protrusion to a phone and then dropping it will result in orders of magnitude more stress on one part of the phone than would have been the case without the protrusion. 'Beefing up' phone case wouldn't be practical solution - it would add weight and bulk.

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Dave 126
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Re: a patent on a bayonet fitting?

>What bunch of idiots would grant that?

Er, the sort of idiot who would comment on a patent application that they clearly haven't read? Oh, the irony.

Read the patent application (as linked to in the above article) and you will see that they are NOT trying to patent 'the bayonet fitting'. They ARE trying to patent a mechanism, incorporating a bayonet system, that makes use of elastomers to allow lens attachments to 'break off' if subjected to a certain threshold level of force, such as would be cause by dropped the phone and lens assembly. The rationale behind this is to protect the phone casing from large bending moments.

I have seen this sort of concept on sports equipment (clipless pedal systems, ski bindings etc) to protect users knees, but I haven't personally come across it used with a bayonet mechanism. If you have, please do provide a link!

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Dave 126
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Re: a patent on a bayonet fitting?

>Yeah, bayonet mount for lenses, like my 30 year old camera at home?

Not quite. This patent describes bayonet fittings that 'break off' if the phone is dropped, thus reducing the force applied to the phone casing.

If the phone had even only a 3" lens attachment fitted to it, the bending force on the phone's bayonet fitting would still be considerable. It is better if it breaks away if the phone is knocked or dropped. If read the patent, you will see references to 'elastomeric compliance'. The abstract is cryptically written, but the 'detailed description' section of the patent application is fairly straightforward if you just parse out the mumbo jumbo.

This is akin to bindings on skis - it is better for your boot to become detached from the ski than it is for your knee to bent the wrong way round.

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Dave 126
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Re: Bayonet lens mounts?

@Big-nosed Pengie

It is not a patent for a generic bayonet fitting, it is a patent for a novel type of bayonet fitting. It describes a system that, unlike light bulbs and SLR lenses, allows the attachment to 'break off' if a threshold level of force is applied, (e.g by dropping the phone), so that less damage is caused to the phone casing. It is the method for implementing this 'break off' mechanism that this patent describes.

An analogy is found on the back of mountain bikes. Rather than attach the rear derailleur mechanism directly to a protrusion on the main frame, the derailleur is attached to a 'break-away' hanger boss. In the event that the rider smashes the derailleur against a rock, the break-away boss snaps. The break-away boss is far cheaper to replace than the entire frame is.

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HTC One M8: Reg man takes spin in Alfa Romeo of smartphone world

Dave 126
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Re: Great Sound?

People who think its acceptable to play YouTube music videos to their mates in the pub beer garden should be barred, it's true.

That said, I often use the internal speaker in my phone when it can't bother other people. Listening to a podcast in the bath, or to spoken word radio when doing some housework - a passable internal speaker is a useful feature. Music, however, requires either big speakers or earphones.

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Vodafone brings African tech to Europe

Dave 126
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Sounds convenient. The biggest problem I found for paying for stuff in Bolivia was the national shortage of small denomination notes and coins. Shops, taxis and stalls were all loathe to 'break a note'.

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NSA plans to FREE YOUR DATA with range of cloud services, analytics

Dave 126
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Re: Suspense of disbelief

This has actually been done before! When the Welsh philosopher and drug dealer Howard Marks was asked how his memory was good enough after decades of dope smoking to write his autobiography, he said he just submitted a Freedom of Information request to the FBI, who gave him all the notes they had been keeping on him for years.

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BT Tower to be replaced by 3D printed BT Tower

Dave 126
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Re: I'm a Barbie Girl

Hehe, 'Panorama' aside, the bottoms of some 3D prints do resemble spaghetti - is the extruded filament isn't properly supported.

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Dave 126
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Haha! Lego bricks could be used to build a very tall tower. Dr Ian Johnston, an applied mathematician and lecturer in engineering, explains his tests and reasoning here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-20578627

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Dave 126
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Re: Future?

Yep, there's that old technique of building silos by pouring concrete into two short concentric steels sleeves. As the concrete cures, the sleeves jack themselves up on the now solid concrete, more fresh concrete is added and the process continues until the desired height is achieved.

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