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* Posts by Dave 126

4072 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Obama seeks $100m to unlock your BRAIN's secrets

Dave 126
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Re: *Actual* use for this project will be

I only drink it when I have the shits in foreign countries.

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Dave 126
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Re: It's always easy...

I would recommend reading this transcript to a lecture given by Mike Lazaridis, a co-founder of RIM, to the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Vancouver

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/scienceshow/mike-lazaridis----the-power-of-ideas/4053180

An excerpt:

"Over 90% of the time on the venture capitalist model you'd be losing your bet. But a few percent of the time you'd be making breakthroughs, because that's the other thing trailblazers do, they discover things that are utterly new. We need a system for scientific research that allows researchers to get lost exploring, maybe even encourage them to get lost exploring, because you know what? It's worth it. It's the path to breakthroughs. That is the kind of science that will give us the next generation of truly fundamental breakthroughs, things on the order of Maxwell's unification of electricity and magnetism, or Einstein's notion of space-time, or quantum mechanics.

"I'm talking about physics because physics is my passion, but of course we need breakthroughs in every major scientific area. And the impact of breakthroughs? History has taught us that it's impossible to say, even the discoverers can't say it. Brattain, Shockley and Bardeen came up with the transistor while trying to figure out how quantum mechanics worked in solids. They figured their new invention would probably be important to, say, the hearing aid industry. They had no idea what their discoveries would mean to the world."

And he is putting his own money into it.

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Dave 126
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Re: "Jump-start a sagging economy"

>Not sure how researching brains will help the economy, create new jobs, and "make the best products". Just saying.

I think a suitable test subject has just identified themselves. Oh wait, my mistake: they haven't because they posted as AC.

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Dave 126
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Re: It's actually a very inventive backronym

'Stuff Happening In Technology' is as reasonable a name as any other for an IT news site (and is recursive too, if one uses a common colloquialism), except people mistake it for an offshoot of Ars [Technica].

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Card skimmers targeting more than ATMs, says EU

Dave 126
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Re: Funny Stuff

>From the very inception of the "Pin Code" we have been laughing at how insecure this system is.

That's all well and good, but the risk has to be compared to the alternatives. I haven't done the sums on the risk of losing money through card fraud versus the risk of losing money through losing your wallet, or having a £20 slip from your pocket.

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Steve Jobs to supervise iPhone 6 FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE

Dave 126
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Re: 'Poll' position

>Will we shortly be told that Jobs' birth was heralded by a double rainbow and a shooting star in the sky? And that he scored 11 holes-in-one during his first and only round of golf?

Kim Jong Un is becoming the new Chuck Norris...

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Dave 126
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Re: This is not unusual

We were told on our product design course that car manufacturers would have several design teams; working on the cars to be released in one, three and five years time. The constraints for phones are different, and the time-scales probably shorter, but yeah, there's nothing surprising here.

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Playboy submits to Apple with nudity-free 'Pornography 2.0' app

Dave 126
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Re: Heh.....

>"Unporn"

"Tried to de-stimulate him with a dog carcass"

- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_mOf4kJ7dE Chris Morris' Blue Jam.

NSFW

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Dave 126
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>If Apple allowed other app stores, then that is fine, but as its a locked down ecosystem, it is pure censorship...If Apple allowed other app stores, then that is fine, but as its a locked down ecosystem, it is pure censorship...

Er, the thing has a web browser, y'know. You might want to reserve that phrase for when iDevices only connect to a limited number of websites on an Apple whitelist. Another solution for you would be to transfer a load of pictures from your computer to the iDevice- and saving your data allowance, too. Unlike news and emails, it matters not if the playmate picture is a month old (the picture, not the playmate).

If the owner has the know-how, they can 'jailbreak' the iDevice and use the Cydia app store. If they don't have the know-how, then maybe it isn't the worst thing that the device limits what the user can do to it.

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Dave 126
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Re: Shel Silverstein used to write stories for Playboy

I knew they used to publish a lot of stories. The following list of writers published in Playboy between 1960 and 1990 is from Wikipedia, but it appears realistic enough:

Saul Bellow, Sean O'Faolain, John Updike, James Dickey, John Cheever, Doris Lessing, Joyce Carol Oates, Vladimir Nabokov, Michael Crichton, John LeCarre, Irwin Shaw, Jean Shepherd, Arthur Koestler, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Bernard Malamud, John Irving, Anne Sexton, Nadine Gordimer, Kurt Vonnegut and J. P. Donleavy, as well as poetry by Yevgeny Yevtushenko.

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Review: Jabra Revo Wireless headphones

Dave 126
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Re: Gapless = correct

Gapless Playback - a need shared by classical music, Pink Floyd albums and dance music mixes.

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Dave 126
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I was going to ask the same (though I'd have to take a soldering iron to a spare Sennheiser cable to really make it worth while)- what's the audio quality like with modern Bluetooth standards/dongles? I read somewhere that some protocols can just punt your source mp3 file to the 'phones, without transcoding to a different format on the way... An Idiot's Guide To wireless audio would be handy : D

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Lotsa lasers an option for the Next Big Physics

Dave 126
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Re: Awesome

Many smaller sharks, more widely distributed. In practical terms, this allows them to be contained across several lakes, as opposed to one big ocean.

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Patent shark‘s copyright claim could bite all Unix

Dave 126
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Re: April Fools!

I thought something about this story smelt a little fishy... so I did a Google Nose search on the odour, and my suspicions were confirmed.

http://www.google.com/intl/en/landing/nose/

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Apple files patent for iPhone with wraparound display

Dave 126
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Re: Mmm... wobbly...

A rubber case?

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Dave 126
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Re: Dear Apple

Had 'm a d r a' achived a calmer state, he might have supported his point by noting that Android devices allow a 3rd party keyboard to be used system-wide, whereas 3rd-party iOS keyboards can't be used all the time.

I have mixed feeling about how much control to allow a user... I like having as much control as possible, in case my use-case has not been fully envisioned by the original designer.... at the same time, I wish some of my friends' systems were locked down, so I didn't get called upon to repair the damage they themselves did.

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Dave 126
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Re: Nooooooooo!!!!11!11!!!

>The current fad for high gloss finish glass displays is already a PITA in all sorts of lighting conditions.

My understanding was that OLED displays were less prone to this issue. Anyway, don't worry, it's just a patent application, not a product implementation.

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Dave 126
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Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

>"Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol

Your post infringes Ben Elton's IP : D http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1060812.Gasping

The script of Ben Elton's first play. A satire on big business, the media and product exploitation. Designer air proves to be the marketing phenomenon of the decade, but as demand outstrips supply, Lockheart Industries plunders the Third World for resources. The world is starting to gasp, and only the biggest suckers survive.

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Dave 126
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Re: What a good idea

>Not that anyone will care, it's a crap idea.

The devil is in the details, so I'd find it easier to judge the implementation than the concept.

The fact that many of mates who bought lower-end touch-screen phones ending up regretting it (due to unresponsive screens, no proximity sensor so ones cheek would end a call, a poor lock system so the phone would make 'pocket calls') reminds us that what seems a cool product in the shop can be exasperating after a week of ownership.

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'I've read all the Harry Potters - and I'm proud to have done so for adverts'

Dave 126
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> slightly beholden to Adam Curtis in style,

Nvidia and other are working on facsimile animated faces resembling real people... when a voice-synthesizer can do the same perhaps we can feed AO's articles through a 'Curtisizer' (accompanied by large bold text, of course). This might entertain for five minutes before one installs the Sylvester the Cat voice-pack...

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Dave 126
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Re: Twat?

@Wize

I noticed that - I posted a few comments, mostly factual hurdles to the few who wanted to take an unobstructed swing at Mr Fry, but one was held back.

This moderation - though of course the prerogative of the Reg - left a bad taste in my mouth because it wasn't in keeping with the spirit of article, as it showed precious little moderation itself.

Still, it is the Reg, it is their rules in their house, and there are many other sites for me to read on the internet.

As for Mr Fry, the main oversight in his response was not recognising Reg Commentards have a healthy disrespect for Reg hacks, and the opinions of one Reg contributor did not reflect that of most of its readership.

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Furious Stephen Fry blasts 'evil' Reg and 'TW*T' Orlowski

Dave 126
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Re: None are so clearly upset ...

It's worth noting that Orlowski's response to the the genuine humble request from a comentard for him to clarify exactly what in Stephen Fry's take on Turing's contribution was "You're having a stupid moment".

Orlowski was down voted more than two dozen times, and no other commentard could provide a concise answer either, so the absence of AH's explanation means that this match defaults to Mr Fry.

Anyway, sod all this, I want the following (spoof, d'uh) to be bought to the small screen:

The Alan Turing Adventures

Mark Gatiss, fresh from the success of his adaptation of HG Wells’ The First Men In The Moon, has been given a lavish (by BBC 4 standards) budget to create this pilot for a proposed series of lavish new detective stories, in which he stars as the titular hero. Based upon a never filmed script by recently deceased BBC veteran Ted Vaaak, The Alan Turing Adventures is set during an alternate history Second World War. Turing here has been re-imagined as a dashing and flamboyant secret agent careering around behind enemy lines in a desperate attempt to steal and decode Hitler’s childhood diary, en route to which he gets locked in a deadly game of cat and mouse with Nazi rocketeer Wernher von Braun (Benedict Cumberbatch).

- http://www.essexterror.com/blog/index.php/2011/03/21/film-review-the-alan-turing-adventures/

Maybe some luvvies can be found to appear in it. Despite Nvidia's recent efforts, we still need them.

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Dave 126
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Re: I thought Fry liked pedantry

>dose of heavy weight pedantry.

Pedantry is usually in the form of "Man said ABCDF, man should have said ABCDE [as any fule kno]"

What we had on Friday wasn't that, but something closer to "Man said ABCDF, screw him, screw his friends, screw the miserable hag he rode into town on"

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Dave 126
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Re: S Fry a crème brûlée made from turds

So, man gets attacked for no clear reason on the internet, and that's fun and giggles.

Man responds in kind, and that's throwing toys out of pram?

Um, can you explain why you think this is a one way street?

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Dave 126
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Re: to my mind the only thing julie burchill did right

Heck, I can't imagine anyone paying her to do a voice-over.

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Review: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2

Dave 126
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Re: muddying the waters with Windows RT

>Bear in mind Intels persistent failure to deliver on power consumption promises.

Why bother when you can read up on the latest power consumption benchmarks before you make your purchase?

"Officiating x86 Vs. ARM Using Hard Data" - http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/atom-z2760-power-consumption-arm,3387-5.html

So far, they can't declare a winner and note the race is far from over.

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Nanowires boost photovoltaics sunlight capture by 15X

Dave 126
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Re: re: Just out of curiosity

Oops! Thankyou Pookietoo, I wasn't paying attention.

Note to self:

Nano wires: generic, wires of any material on the scale of 10−9 meters

Nano tubes: tubes of carbon, similar to a buckyball but a tube. Tricky to manufacture in long lengths, though we keep hearing of incremental advances.

I think part of my brain incorrectly read it as nano-tubes, due to a previous solar-panel concept in which a 'forest' of short, irregular nano-tubes is deposited/grown on a substrate (much easier than making a long nanotube, I'm lead to belive), making the solar panel very black indeed.

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Dave 126
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Just out of curiosity, how many products using nano-tubes or bucky balls (for any purpose) are on the market yet?

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Next from Microsoft: 'Blue', the Windows 8 they hope you don't hate

Dave 126
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Re: Windows Explorer

A decent file explorer?

Is this a reference to the old two-pane file explorer that disappeared at the same time MS tried to claim Internet Explorer was an integral part of the OS in a bid to avoid an anti-trust ruling?

I get on okay with Windows explorer on 7... it doesn't crash too often, and the Win7 'Snap to half screen' feature makes it easier to recreate the old two-pane functionality.

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Apple share-price-off-a-cliff: Told you that would happen

Dave 126
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Re: pathetically dependent?

>Part of Apple's problem is that a huge proportion its profits are derived from two products - the iPhone and the iPad. Both are market leaders, and it's hard to grow market share when you're in front. If either product falls out of fashion (how many iPods do you see these days, for example?), or is replaced by a newer model that doesn't find favour with consumers, Apple's profits will take a very sharp tumble.

Very true. So if I were Apple, I would want to make myself market leader for whatever the next "mp3 / smartphone / tablet" thingie is, and a pile of cash would be bloody helpful in that aim. Cash to both to pay more people to develop it faster, or to buy in a company who has the technology they need (like they did with Fingerworks' multitouch patents and experience).

Having cash can only help them get preferential treatment in the supply chain, too.

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Stephen Fry explains… Alan Turing's amazing computer

Dave 126
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Re: Spelling

>He's also misspelt program as programme. Surely the greatest crime of all.

Original English spelling was 'program', but 'programme' was popularised by entertainment promoters using it to add some French glamour to their posters.

Just to amuse myself, I use 'program' for computery stuff, and 'programme' for entertainment stuff, but I don't know if there is a hard rule, fluid thing this language is.

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Dave 126
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Re: Problem is not Fry

> Nothing, nothing at all on ANY BBC channel - radio or TV is remotely scientific, engineering or based on anything other than the arts.

Ug?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006mgxf or

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Miodownik - who has done the long-running Royal Institute Christmas lectures, shown on the BBC, as well as other series.

There are also the BBC / Open University co-productions.

Do you want to rewrite your post so as not to distract from the grains of truth it contains?

>If I had my way the BBC would be forced to rely on subscription for funding, it would then lose out.

So you'd have it preaching to the choir? Okay...

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Dave 126
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Re: And he's not a bad writer

>Just read one book of his, it was a disgustingly complete rip-off of "The Count of Monte-Cristo" set in modern times and not even a tenth as good.

>Black Adder, Jeeves etc are diamond, just stick to the acting, mate, OK?

I didn't enjoy 'The Star's Tennis Balls' very much, though I have his other books. However, he was writing (and indeed very rich from writing another adaptation, of My Fair Lady) before he was in Black Adder or Jeeves and Wooster.

An interesting juxtaposition is between the semi-autobiographical The Liar, and his later autobiography Moab Is My Washpot, written a few years after his 1995 nervous breakdown... something happened to reduce his need for disguise. He's appeared much more comfortable in his own skin since then, too.

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Dave 126
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Re: God I'm getting sick of Fry

>I'm getting a bit sick of Fry

The simple solution is for you to watch less television. Try reading.

>Fry is only revered due to QI and having a air of pomposity about him

Or for his writing, which made him a millionaire in early twenties. One national broadsheet columnist took a pop at him the other week- amusing, because Fry's columns are infinitely more perceptive, witty and self depreciating than that no-name hack's.

>In a survey 8% of people wanted Fry to be Chancellor and 3% wanted Cox, no idea why as neither have anything to do with economics.

Neither has past experience of the current chancellor of the exchequer, who studied History of Art and then a stint as a data entry clerk... I would imagine that Brian Cox has a better grasp of mathematics and computer modelling, which are might considered to be 'transferable skills'. Stephen Fry has spent time in prison for credit card fraud... whether this makes him more or less suitable for the role than Mr Osborne I'll leave to you to decide.

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Dave 126
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It's a Universal Turing Machine, that is a Turing Machine that can compute anything any other Turing Machine can. As you say, it was a concept, and wasn't implemented by Turing.

I remember Gödel, Escher, Bach explained it quite well, but alas, all I can recall from the book are lots of conversations with a tortoise.

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Dave 126
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Re: I have an issue with Fry

I don't think he's claimed to be anything other than a consumer of technology, and has made no secret of buying the latest gadget for the sake of it- if I had made myself as rich as he did in his early twenties, I probably would have spent a load on soon-to-obsolete gizmos too. He's had every latest flashy device from the mid-eighties onwards, so as consumers go he's had more first-hand experience than most.

Likewise his friend Douglas Adams, though he took a slightly deeper interest he explained thus: "I'm the kind of person who, if faced with a two hour task on the computer, will spend two days writing some software to do it for me"

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Dave 126
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Beep! -And your challenge is?

Well, he was never the best at Just A Minute.

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Oi, Microsoft, where's my effin' toolbar gone?

Dave 126
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Re: watch on ??

I'm trying rework that Bacarach David classic "Walk on by" by your rule... Nah, it doesn't have the same ring to it.

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Dave 126
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Re: Probably a memory issue

I swear that it was Word that broke the handy coffee-cup holder on my desktop PC.

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Dave 126
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Re: Death of the sensible UI

I've just upvoted you. Hmmm, I feel kinda grubby.

What I miss when using Libre over Word is Libre's implementation of a Document Map-type tool... but having menus makes up for it.

>And give me a paste-special-unformatted-text button!

Something like that used to be in Word - 'keep source formatting' or 'match destination formatting'.

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Dave 126
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Re: Toolbars, schmoolbars...

>What the hell is wrong with hierarchical text menus anyway?

Not much. My only niggle with them is that if the name of the menu items are too long, navigating it with a mouse becomes a test of dexterity... fall off the path and and you have to start again.

I've never known why pie menus aren't more common- since they happily co-exist with normal context menus, I don't see the downside.

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Dave 126
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Re: The worst thing, by a mile...

>Menu items that just disappeared if you didn't use them often.

Ha! I'd forgotten about those... incomplete menus, stripped of most of their items should they 'confuse' novice users. Grr. At least that 'feature' could be turned off.

For the love all that is holy, I don't know why MS didn't give a hand-over period of few versions between menus and Ribbon. Or just leave menus in.

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Dave 126
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Re: There is a simple explanation

Oh hell, yeah... my university faculty had the latest version of Word, the campus reprographics department, where we were to get our projects printed and bound to a deadline, didn't. Genius.

Shame, because some bits of Word I really like, such as the Document Map.

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Dave 126
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>Together we go hunting for the runaway toolbar. According to the View menu, it’s ticked and ought to be visible. So we do as you do in computing, untick it and retick it

I often do that in Adobe packages... it's not so much that the toolbar has gone AWOL, its just that I can't spot the one I need amongst its peers, despite having used just a moment ago. Unticking and reticking highlights its position to me. I'm aware that Adobe have attempted to give me ways of organising these toolbars, such as tabbing them, but that just gives the buggers more places to hide.

I don't think I've used Word - or Excel - since the "Where the flipping hell has [X] gone? Ferfuxake!" fun of the Ribbon Menu. Similar adventures in Windows Media Player have me using its simpler Classic cousin.

I do love Solidworks' UI - it has menus, a command manager, customisable toolbars, context menus, context pie menus, keyboard shortcuts... hell, even a command line emulator for those who've spend time on 2D drafting.

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Cop an eyeful of that: Moto bungs 5-megapixel cam into plod radio

Dave 126
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It does seem a strange choice not to have a front facing camera, so the officer can snap a picture as soon as they turn up on the scene- perhaps as a crime is happening.

As for video, those are good point- but you've got storage issues, and the editing down to the pertinent footage is complicated by the need to keep an audit trail.

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Ubuntu tapped by China for national operating system

Dave 126
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Re: I don't understand

>Honest curiosity.

Okay, these figure are a bit out of date:

According to the International Centre for Prison Studies at King's College London, the U.S. currently has the largest documented prison population in the world, both in absolute and proportional terms. We've got roughly 2.03 million people behind bars, or 701 per 100,000 population. China has the second-largest number of prisoners (1.51 million, for a rate of 117 per 100,000),

-http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2494/does-the-united-states-lead-the-world-in-prison-population

> can marry 14 year olds?

Alabama: You can get married at 14, but you will need a certified copy of your birth certificate. Both parents must be present with identification, or if you have a legal guardian they must be present with a court order and identification. The state requires a $200 bond to be executed, payable to the State of Alabama. If one or both parents are deceased, proper evidence of such must be provided.

-http://marriage.about.com/cs/teenmarriage/a/teenus.htm

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NASA chief: Earth is DOOMED if we spot a big asteroid at short notice

Dave 126
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Re: Acceptable losses?

>Popping a huge asteroid into BIG bits, a long way from earth, is a LOT better than a HUGE one hitting earth...

Yeah.... instead of being all dead quickly, we're deaf and starve to death. "a LOT better" as you say.

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Dave 126
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Re: Obama's goals

As Richard Feynman established from Nasa engineers, the estimated chance of a catastrophic Shuttle incident was 1 in 200. According to Nasa management, it was 1 in 10, 000. He refused to sign the report into the Challenger disaster unless it was concluded with "You can't fool nature".

Richard Feynman- physicist, bongo player, educator, amateur safe-cracker, supporter of a strip club.

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Samsung: We're doing smart watches too

Dave 126
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Re: If this is a "watch" I'd be very surprised

>Hack! How old are you? You sound like a 5 year old.

I'm genuinely confused.

I wear a sober, small faced analogue watch. It does strike that for telling the time it is superior to my phone.

Also, for setting a reminder it is superior to my phone- I just rotate the bezel to remind myself of when to take my dinner out of the oven. To do the same on my phone would require quite a few steps.

Being able to instantly silence a ringing phone is a social nicety, for those occasions we have forgotten to turn it to silent.

Many mobile phones are used as audio players, connected to a sound system away from where one might be sat... and people of all ages have used music players with remote controls for decades. I'm not sure why implementing this feature (which can be done without making a wristwatch look like naff gizmo) would mark me out as a 5 year old.

I've been arguing that a 'smartwatch' can be made to resemble a normal watch. A single RGB pixel on the watch face can tell me if that phone vibration in my pocket is a message from someone I need to get back to quickly, or not.

Yeah, my inner five year-old would like Dick Tracey video call watch... but the rest of me doesn't.

What would you like to see in a smartwatch, AC?

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Dave 126
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Re: If this is a "watch" @Dave 126

Hiya Ledswinger

Sorry for my clumsy post if it gave the impression of indignation... though I am wary of the mention of Apple since sometimes it can cause Reg posts to deteriorate : D

I know it does look Apple's rivals are merely responding to the Apple rumours, but I think that has more to do with how things have been reported than it has history. (And also, people who feel Apple refined/defined the MP3 player and the smartphone will of course believe Apple have a better chance than anyone else of doing the same for the 'smartwatch'... previous 'smartwatch' efforts have hardly set the world alight)

I suspect Samsung's efforts in this area, though no doubt partly inspired by the Apple rumours, are more related to their own previous efforts, Kickstarter projects such as Pebble and I'm Watch, and also emerging technology (Corning saying that flexible Gorilla glass will be available in a couple of years, battery and charging tech etc) that might make such a device a useful item and not just a toy.

Sony and Samsung have made connected watches in the past - and they are more useful in cities like Tokyo where the severe overcrowding on public transport makes pulling a phone from your pocket a chore.

All the phone makers keen to move on to a new sector, where they can steal a technological lead of their competitors... phones have become too mature to do so.

I agree with you that Apple wouldn't deign to merely create the small feature list I outlined (they need to regain the 'Wow!' factor)... but it is within the scope of Samsung, a crowd-sourced effort, or perhaps a sober and respected wristwatch maker such as Seiko.

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