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* Posts by Dave 126

4046 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Google turns Street View into Mountain View

Dave 126
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Re: Abominable!

Yeti spotted urinating behind a parked car, Yeti mooning the camera, Yeti giving the camera the finger, Yeti spotted by Mrs Yeti with another lady Yeti...

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Kinky Android X-ray app laid bare as malware

Dave 126
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Re: I can understand why people were duped

>I do worry about the kind of person that thinks a free app will do the same job though.

Yeah, you'd expect that you'd at least have to prise the camera module apart and remove the IR filter.

In other news, pills won't make your member bigger, belly fat can be shed by diet and exercise, and girls in Basingstoke do not want to meet you.

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Dave 126
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Re: This gave me an idea

I haven't tried it, but unless the tracking was very accurate, there would be a risk of falling into the 'uncanny valley'. It might be more suitable for 'cartoonising' the subjects, for fun and giggles though.

Of course, you could cover the subject in ping pong balls on a stage next to a render farm, as was done on Avatar- a rough rendering was done in real time during the actors performances, to give the crew an idea of what the eventual scene would look like.

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Dave 126
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A batch of Sony camcorders...

...were withdrawn from sale many years ago, because of the way a 'low light mode' was implemented. However, this Infra Red detection actually made people look as if they were just wearing underwear.

Those units that Sony couldn't recall sold out very quickly indeed.

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Drilling into 3D printing: Gimmick, revolution or spooks' nightmare?

Dave 126
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Re: Dremels

Thank you Alan for engaging with the question. True, a Dremmel can be an accompaniment to a 3D printer, as well as an alternative to a 3D printer for some tasks.

Yeah, I've spotted a fair few in B&Q, but still: I only know two people who own one. They are no where near as common as 18v drills.

Still, 18v drills, like timber yard CNC routers, are handy for real stuff - like furniture and shelves. Dremmels and 3D printers are for smaller fiddly things that are often mass produced anyway.

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Dave 126
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Re: What about the environment?

>you know where most of it will end up!

shredded and put back into the machine's hopper?

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Dave 126
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Re: have i seen this before?

'Print on demand' is a bit in-between... if you need the book this week, order it from a large warehouse somewhere and enjoy the savings given to you by economies of scales or the second hand market. If you need it this minute, download a copy to your e-reader.

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Dave 126
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>Hobbyists will also aspire to them, its going to be the hardware hackers equivalent of a lathe some weird guy

you know will have one in the shed.

That's my take on it... 'Consumer' 3D printers will mainly appeal to people who already have lathes, Dremmels, tap and die sets etc.

Another model is that of a local bureau, servicing end users and other local businesses. Our local timber yard does CNC milling for £100 / hour (but it is such a big sturdy (and expensive) machine it can do jobs quickly, so depending upon the design it only adds 20 - 40% to the cost on top of the material) but you don't hear tech sites making as much noise about an arguably more useful technology (for making furniture, shelves, children's play equipment etc), though buzz-phases such as 'virtual manufacturing', 'long tail', and 'thousands of markets of a few' get invoked from time to time.

Something can help the bloke on the street make use of these services might be devices like the Kinect- MS's new SDK (for the Windows version, not the cheaper but near identical XBOX version) could easily be built upon to scan the back of your car and give you a 2D DWG of a replacement parcel-shelf. It has the bonus of making people look like Hans Solo in carbonite. Oh, a free DWG editor, including a version for your penguins http://www.3ds.com/products/draftsight/download-draftsight/#xtor=AD-508-[swfreetools]-[middle]-[intext]-[www.solidworks.com]

Hell, even the upcoming Playstation 4 allows for 3D modelling in a way that looks like it could complement traditional packages.

Other noises are being made about 'additive manufacturing', in which related technologies are used to achieve shapes and form that are hard to make by traditional means. Substrates for catalysts are an example, since they require a very high surface area to volume ratio. Another example would be structural components with 'property gradients', such as a beam of constant cross-section but of varying mechanical proprties along its length. This is possible using Selective Laser Sintering, using materials such as titanium. Such things are used in aerospace and motorsport- but then they tend to have small production runs anyway.

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Dave 126
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Re: Part of the process@Dave 126

>- the only complication is scaling the pattern to allow for the shrinkage of different metals in casting.

Moulding simulation and design software has been around for a while... it'l cost you, though!

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Dave 126
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>The chances of a home 3D printer being able to turn out a component of the accuracy and strength to replace the carefully designed and made door catch on a machine is in my view slim

It was 'carefully designed and made'.... 'carefully designed and made' to fail that is, and thus steer me towards their on-line spares shop! That was kind of my point, that their business model is compete on price in the showroom, then recuperate the cost by selling the spare parts. A business model that might conceivably be disrupted if a 'made to measure' plastic parts printing bureau (using some sort of Fused Material Deposition process but then chemically cured to create a thermosetting plastic part)

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Dave 126
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Re: Part of the process

I've heard of people printing in wax.

These samples look good:

http://www.shapeways.com/blog/archives/520-very-high-detail-printing-also-in-wax.html

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Dave 126
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>But surely the fittings on that small plastic door latch are proprietary IPR

Good point, don''t know how it would work here. In the automotive industry, car manufacturers are not allowed to invalidate car guarantees because quality 3rd party parts have been used during servicing.

I wouldn't be ordering a specific Whirlpool part, but rather a piece of material of "X by Y by Zmm, with two 9mm holes, and an angled boss of 18 mm by .... " (well, I'd be submitting a CAD drawing, or maybe the bureau can do something with photos using clever software).

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Dave 126
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Re: Part of the process

I could see Games Workshop being challenged by this technology... If people enjoy building their own armies and painting the miniatures, they would enjoy designing their own characters online as well before having them printed and posted out.

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Dave 126
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How many people do you know currently own a Dremmel rotary tool? Like a dentists drill, it can be used for polishing, engraving, cutting and sanding. It is useful, and costs around £80. I know of two people who own one- a professional sculptor and and a hobbyist jewellery maker. I can't see the market for consumer 3D printers being much bigger.

One area where 3D printing bureaus can make a dent is in undercutting replacement parts. My Whirlpool tumble-dryer had a small plastic door latch that melted, and their website very efficiently charged me £18 for a replacement.

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Review: Sony Xperia Z

Dave 126
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Re: i've just got one of these

And the problem with supporting a codec is...?

True, Sony are the only company I know of to be named in an XP BSOD (SonicStage, and MS abandoned their traditional esoteric hex to name Sony as the culprit... as New Scientist remarked at the time "We cannot even begin to imagine the level of acrimony that lead to this message being displayed")

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Dave 126
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Re: "Sony promise to update to 4.2 soon..."

See how they have supported all their 2012 handsets. My Xperia P has already been updated to ICS, and is getting JB this month (whatever, ICS seems good enough).

Sorry you got stung, but those 2011 handsets seemed a bit lacking in RAM at the time.

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Dave 126
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Re: Noooooooo!

My Xperia P works very well for voice calls, and I've heard good things about other Xperia handsets... Don't know what the Z is like.

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Dave 126
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Re: Avoid - screen scratches very easily

Oh well. I stumbled across some forum reference to this anti-shatter layer when I was trying to track down an official Sony replacement for the screen-protector included with my Xperia P. Some people suggest that you just remove the scratched 'anti-shatter' layer http://talk.sonymobile.com/thread/41307?start=0&tstart=0 (how-to video in above link), and install a screen protector ASAP. I can't vouch for the advice given above, but it might be worth you having a look.

The included screen protector worked and protected my screen, but eventually became scratched itself . I bought a replacement at a market stall, but it was poor, and quickly became covered in microscratches, making the thing tricky to use in sunlight (hence, I searched for an official Sony one, since the first had been good). Thankfully, being a 4" phone a widely-available iPhone 5 protector can be cut to fit.

A bit of care is required to install them, but as long as you are in a fairly dust free environment and take care to clean the screen with the included cloth, it should go okay. Don't worry about little bubbles, they can be pushed out to the side after it's laid down. I'm sure the nice young man in your phone shop will install it for you if you buy it from him.

Good luck.

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Dave 126
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Re: i've just got one of these

My pet peeve with the Sony Walkman app is that is doesn't support WMA. Otherwise it is very good.

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Dave 126
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Re: After so many many SE phones...

>but nobody else is doing high end waterproof phones right now.

Well, there was that recent Reg article that suggested that a waterproofing process is applied to quite a few handsets, to reduce returns. However, it isn't usually advertised, as the first thing some people do is to 'test' it by deliberately dunking it it water.

I remember being in school and playing baseball in a classroom using a tack hammer as a bat and a Casio G-Shock as a ball. No harm done. A few years later I deliberately dropped another G-Shock from a first-floor window onto concrete, and having to get it fixed on warranty (which was honoured, but the parts took an age to come from Japan).

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Dave 126
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Re: "Currently running the show is Android 4.1.2 though Sony is promising an upgrade to..."

>Sony promising. Precisely why I wouldn't get one.

All of last year's Xperia phones have been upgraded to ICS, and most of them are receiving a Jelly Bean update this month. When I got my Xperia P, many of the online forums echoed the negative view you have just expressed re Sony's abandonment of 2011 models, so it seems they have listened and upped their game.

-http://www.techradar.com/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/sony-starts-rolling-out-jelly-bean-for-xperia-users-1130304

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Dave 126
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Re: watching video is surely one of the reasons you’d buy an Xperia Z

@Miffo "Not sure why you're thinking about that mate -nobody is saying a phone shouldn't have a loud speaker." Er, JDX, did say just that, I think it was to him that David Webb was responding.

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Dave 126
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Re: i've just got one of these

Hmm, like MP3 players 'back in the day', when you had to select a country outside the EU to get a decent volume. Not that I'm cavalier with my hearing (tinnitus sounds like hell) but headphones do vary.

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Dave 126
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Re: I like the waterproof feature

>or a charging port that doesn't mind getting wet and I'm sold

Seems Sony have anticipated your concern:

Those two exposed metal contacts on the side next to the uSD slot are for charging. [Charging cradle an optional extra, I would imagine]

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Dave 126
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Re: @AC 13:21

Yeah, I was thinking of the watches with complications that are sold for prices akin to a new Rolls Royce or Bugatti.... y'know, the kind that are favoured by Russian politicians:

" Take the Deputy Mayor of Moscow, Vladimir Resin. His DeWitt La Pressy Grande Complication is worth a whopping $1.03 million. The head of Russia’s state bank VTB rocks a $240,800 Patek Philippe. The CEO of the state’s gas monopoly, Gazprom, sports a $112,100 Breguet. The brutal leader of Chechnya’s Bovet goes for around $300,000. President Dmitry Medvedev’s $32,200 Breguet seems almost modest. And the list goes on."

-http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2009/10/russian-officials-sporting-watches-worth-up-to-1-million/

An extremely waterproof Rolex Submariner? Tch, a 'mere' £5000.

Putin's wristwatch collection is estimated to be worth six times his annual salary.

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Dave 126
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Re: Icon says it all

I'd check out side by side photo comparisons before agreeing with AC... there have been a few reviews that suggest the camera isn't as great as the specs suggest, but maybe the reviewer missed a trick. Who knows.

That said, I'd agree with AC in that I try avoid flash in most circumstances, and that if I have to use it I try to bounce it or diffuse it somehow.

Hmm, just found some photos taken on my Xperia P on Friday night in a dark pub... the images are grainy, but recognisable - the camera seems to have made the most of its limited capabilities.

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Dave 126
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Re: After so many many SE phones...

>Touchslab phones are the norm now. Where's the innovation?

That's a charge that has been levelled at all the phone makers... you could read Sony's inclusion of waterproofing as an acceptance of this, that phones have matured and should be refined to be durable. I mean, the only wristwatches that aren't waterproof these days seem to be ludicrously expensive status symbols.

I note that Sony's tablet is waterproof, as well. Only on Sunday I went to a cafe, and the lass behind the counter had an iPad on a cook-book stand, wrapped in clingfilm. I don't know if she was using it for recipes, stock control or simply playing music... but it seems there is a demand in the real world for something that doesn't mind a bit of gunk.

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Dave 126
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Re: Icon says it all

Curious... Esskay appears to be a sensible human being, so it must just be a matter of taste and individual user needs: I'd personally consider waterproofing to be a better feature than a xenon flash.

The sensible way to implement better flash on phones would be to make the flash a separate unit, remotely triggered by the phone camera - not only would a xenon flash be available to all those who want it, but it would also be more flattering to the subjects by reducing the 'albino rabbit in headlights' look.

Right, I'm off to see if there is anything approaching an Android feature request list ...

: D

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Dave 126
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Re: watching video is surely one of the reasons you’d buy an Xperia Z

I'm absolutely with you on wanting to bash sodcasters about the noggin, but I do regularly use the speaker on my phone when I am out of earshot of other people. Not for music, but for spoken-word podcasts it's fine.

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Dave 126
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Off the top of my head..

Challenge accepted:

Last year: The U (cheap), the P (less Cheap), S (higher end), T (big screen), TX (big screen, swappable battery), Go (like the U but waterproof), this year the Z. I may have missed a few, though.

Sorry, I only know this cos I've been searching the web for when Jelly Bean wobbles towards my handset (end of this month, apparently... )

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Software bug halts Curiosity: Nuke lab bot in safe mode

Dave 126
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Re: Software Bug? Or a message for us they are going to delete???

"You have been found in violation of our parking policy. Please pay the sum of £85. If you pay with in the next ten days, this amount will be reduced to £45. Please do not interfere with this notice"

And then you would have wished you'd given the rover a bigger LASER.

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Dave 126
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They no doubt have error checking and redundancy, but when conditions are shit why not take a few weeks off til they get better?

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Dave 126
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>but you can see the camera in the picture?

What you see is a different camera... the one that took the pics is mounted on a robotic arm.

"The rover's robotic arm is not visible in the mosaic. MAHLI, which took the component images for this mosaic, is mounted on a turret at the end of the arm. Wrist motions and turret rotations on the arm allowed MAHLI to acquire the mosaic's component images. The arm was positioned out of the shot in the images or portions of images used in the mosaic. Please check video explanation by NASA: http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/videogallery/index.html?media_id=156880341 "

-http://www.360cities.net/image/mars-panorama-curiosity-solar-day-177#13.70,23.50,110.0

The link includes an 'interactive panorama' of the same image(s).

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4K video may wow vidiots, but content creators see pitfalls

Dave 126
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Re: Is there any point at the consumer end?

>And there is the Hollywood crap "Ultraviolet" for more compressed to hell junk.

I thought Ultra-violet was an additional service to people who had bought DVDs or Blu-rays and also want to watch the content on a mobile device or have it streamed to their mate's house (both situations where the content would probably have to be compressed anyway). I.e studios are trying to give average consumers something approaching the convenience enjoyed by those folk who immediately rip their discs to their own home server (because if the studios didn't make this effort, more people would educate themselves about ripping and removing DRM from discs for the sake of convenience).

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Dave 126
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Re: Back-of-napking calculations

>BTW: Can someone explain to me why the significance of the number changed?

Marketing. '4K' is snappier than 'really really high definition and we mean it this time', and it is around 4x the number of pixels that today's 'Full HD' boasts. Also, calling it '2K' sounds so turn-of-the-century.

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Paying a TV tax makes you happy - BBC

Dave 126
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Re: I want to like the BBC

It's a competition thing. Take the BBC's radio plays, for example: If the BBC made their entire back catalogue available on demand, it would make life hard for commercial rivals, such as those producing audio books.

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Dave 126
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Re: Boo hoo hoo

Have you considered working as a columnist for The Daily Telegraph?

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Dave 126
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A few years back a report said that the average fine handed out to TV Licence Fee dodgers was lower than the actual licence.

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Microsoft begins automatic Windows 7 SP1 rollout

Dave 126
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Re: Clarify

It was released in 2011, but the user had to go seek it out themselves. The news today is that it has been added to the Windows automatic updates.

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SimCity owners get free game, EA will get A NEW CEO

Dave 126
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Re: Oh.. I see..

Sounds like a situation in which peer-to-peer distribution would make sense.

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Nvidia, Continuum team up to sling Python at GPU coprocessors

Dave 126
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The source of those figures:

>I call balls

From the CodeEval website, re those figures:

"Statistics and Figures are based on a sample size of over 100,000+ challenges processed from Employers who have run challenges on CodeEval in 2012.

About CodeEval

CodeEval is a community of developers interested in solving programming challenges. Community members can compete with each other, challenge their friends and build out their profiles to showcase to friends and employers too."

So it isn't necessarily the worlds most popular coding language, just the most popular amongst competitors on this website.

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Build a BONKERS gaming PC

Dave 126
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Re: Monitor?

Or three 23" monitors, depending upon the type of game. If you are going to buy one, with a view to adding to it later, consider the thickness of the bezel.

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Dave 126
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Re: Cores

Yeah, a certain component benchmarking and testing website suggests that beyond a certain point, many modern games just don't tax more powerful CPUs too much, and the money be better spent elsewhere.

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Microsoft issues manual on Brits to Cambridge exports

Dave 126
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Re: Re Pasties

Hmmm, okay, 'snack' wasn't the best choice of word- 'mobile meal' is more appropriate. At the risk of enraging some readers, I pick up about twenty pasties from Barnstaple every time I pass the town, for people in my local further North. As a bonus, it pisses off my Cornish mates. Though in Devon, this bakery in Barnstaple was voted as producing the best pasties in the South West.

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Dave 126
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I can't remember whether Bill Bryson was commenting on British place name pronunciations, or English pub names, but he did note "at the very least, it should confuse foreigners".

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Dave 126
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Oh dear... before criticising MS's efforts, TheRegister should at least post its own guide to Living in Blighty, so we readers can compare efforts (or rather, just have a giggle).

Pastie:

Eng.: n pastry based snack, often containing beef. Best sampled from a bakery rather than from a gas station.

US: n device for covering a stripper's nipple.

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Windows Phone 8 support to end in 2014

Dave 126
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Re: Backwards Compatibility

>Maybe they will take a page out of the Android book in that if you want to upgrade you have to buy new.

That was more the case when Android hardware was advancing more each year, as was Android itself. Currently released hardware, even at the mid-range, is capable enough to hold its own for a few versions... and most manufacturers are getting better at releasing Android updates- perhaps because of the negative reaction they have received in the past for 'abandoning' models.

Similarly, MS might have noticed the negative reaction that they received for not making Win 8 Phone work on WinPho 7 handsets and may avoid making the same mistake. Also, Win 8 hardware can probably handle whatever 'Win Pho 9' might demand of it, at least for core functions.

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Touch screens and greasy mitts: All you need is glove

Dave 126
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My apologies, Mr Dabbs.... and I posted from a laptop so I can't blame my error on a touch-screen keyboard.

Re things like the Leap, I'm looking on with interest to see what sort of interfaces people devise. Merely transplanting a 'point and click' interface to it will probably be no more successful than using desktop GUI on a tablet, or using a mouse to control a flight simulator.

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Dave 126
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Will you be getting a Leap Motion controller, Mr Dabs?

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Trip the fight fantastic

Dave 126
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Re: Square Syndrome

I noted the film version was on iPlayer a couple of days ago... the only scene I remember from watching it years ago was the unexpected appearance of Chris Barrie ( 'Rimmer' from Red Dwarf ).

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