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* Posts by Dave 126

4068 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Björk gives up trying to Kickstart Android music app

Dave 126
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Re: So in summary

Most Android devices can't handle audio fast enough - why do think that most of the commercial audio creation apps are on iOS? (See link above link)

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Dave 126
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The iPhone has always had a relatively audio low latency around the 8-12ms mark (and built-in wireless MIDI), but Android hasn't always been great for virtual musical instruments:

On the Samsung Galaxy Nexus handset – a device over which Google has more control – they've already improved latency from 100 ms in “Ice Cream Sandwich” (4.0) to “about 12 ms” in “Jelly Bean” (4.1), and want to go oven better. 12 ms is usable; sub-10 ms could really attract sound developers to the platform.

-http://createdigitalmusic.com/2012/07/android-high-performance-audio-in-4-1-and-what-it-means-plus-libpd-goodness-today/

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Psst, wanna block nuisance calls? BT'll do it... for a price

Dave 126
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Re: the new bane of my life

>is the message that says 'this is an important message about <blah> press 1 to call us back, or 9 to be removed from the database'

>How on earth can I stop these?

Partial solution on Android (I know this article is about landlines)- add the incoming number to your phonebook, eg "Zz Spam", then view contact, then edit, then check the box marked "send straight to voicemail"

Oh, this would be a nice feature on smartphones- having a voicemail feature built into machine - messages are recorded locally on the device (good for when you can't answer your phone in meetings, on silent, driving etc- obviously traditional voicemail is still required for the battery is flat or you have no signal).

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Dave 126
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Re: Useless really

>Calls from behind NHS switchboards are given as 'withheld', and due to data protection, these callers often won't leave any useful information on answerphones.

It is my understanding that public services have to ring you back on a non-withheld number. My friend has paid BT a quid a month for years to block all unknown numbers to his landline. I asked him about doctors etc, and he said they were required to call him from an identifiable number.

I answered an 'unknown number' the other Saturday evening on my mobile, turned out to be a mate requiring a lift home from a police station in the next city (after being released without charge)- his mobile had no credit since he had neglected to pick up his cash card when they arrested him from his house. He had tried his brother and his closer mates, but not one had picked up his call - no doubt expecting it to be a sales call.

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Dave 126
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Re: AAISP Honeypot

In "Greetings! Carbon-based Bipeds!" (collected essays), Arthur C Clarke outlined his plan to hack his fax machine so as to cost the senders of spam faxes money: IIRC, it amounted to manipulating packets so the sending machine would keep trying to send spam in vain.

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Huge rock-hard marble erection shocks Japanese kiddies

Dave 126
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Re: It's just a penis.

>Kryten: But it's hideous! That's the best design they could come up with!?

Q: What is the knob on the end for?

German scientist: It is to give more pleasure to the man!

French Scientist: It is to give more pleasure to the woman!

British Scientist: It is to stop your hand falling off the end!

Modern fluid modelling suggests the knob on the end has evolved to act as a plunger, removing what might have been left there by a previous gentleman- all the better to promote your genetic material. More civilised than easting his offspring after the fact, as lions have been known to.

Anyway, here's a Monty Python song, NSFW: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGRPFUYUUdQ

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Dave 126
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Re: This doesn't go far enough!

>Animals and humans should have them removed as well!

I've said it before- if some fundamentalist cult wants to travel the world putting trousers on animals to preserve their modesty, then I would like to watch them try. From a safe distance.

(I used to know a fly-poster who was employed by Levi's to attach jeans to public statues... of course the jeans undid down the legs to allow them to be attached to figures whose feet were attached to the base.)

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Dave 126
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Re: Simpsons did it

Iain Banks did it too- one of his teenage characters wears a t-shirt with a print of David on it. Her father objects, so she sews a felt fig-leaf on to it.

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Dave 126
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Re: Oh look...

Alice Cooper is now a Christian, like his father before him, but during their boozing heyday his band used to send flowers to Mary Whitehouse in gratitude- money couldn't buy the kind of publicity she provided them.

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Dave 126
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Re: David's dangler

>oh my...I'm not even sure I want to know how you know this [The ancient Greeks had an aesthetic style that favoured small penises with a long prepuce.]

History of Art and the Classics used to be considered part of a rounded (some would say elitist) education:

"Sex was invented by the ancient Greeks, but it took the Romans to introduce it to women".

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Dave 126
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"The doctors say it may take months before I remember what normal genitals look like, and even longer before I remember how they are intended to function."

- from The Onion, above

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Dave 126
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Re: It's just a penis.

Michelangelo's David is generally considered to be a good looking chap.

The legend is that he was originally carved with a larger dong, but the wealthy traders who commissioned him grew jealous of the appreciative comments their wives made about him, so they insisted Michelangelo chipped David's manhood down to its current size. Alas, the story is probably not true.

Still, why do the Japanese pixel out genitals, but are fine with demon tentacle rape porn?

http://www.theonion.com/articles/japan-pledges-to-halt-production-of-weirdo-porn-th,2657/

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Adobe muzzles TWO zero-day wild things with emergency Flash patches

Dave 126
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Re: What The Holy FUCK ???

>Why on earth do they need a movie inside a text document ???

The whole idea is that a document doesn't need to know what kind of content is embedded in it- just to who to call to open it. This embedded document could be a spreadsheet, an image or a video- the host document doesn't know or care. This is an old concept.

That's the idea- obviously things don't always go smoothly when translated into practice.

Maybe your question should be- "how can any content inside a document be allowed to be damaging to the system"? but the line gets a bit fuzzy.... like the Sorcerer's Apprentice, powerful tools can be dangerous.

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Dave 126
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Re: "Critical block for active Win and MAC attacks"

Mac = a brand of personal computer

MAC = Media Access Control [address]

Careful with that CapsLock, Eugene!

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Dave 126
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Re: Surprise

Go away Eadon.

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'Depression-era grandma' Apple responds to bolshy investor

Dave 126
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Re: Einhorn's Ulterior Motif

>When you buy stock in a company, you must agree with the way the company is managed

Unless you are buying stock to influence how the company is managed. Still, Apple, seemed to be okay before he invested in them.

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Dave 126
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It is inevitable that fortunes rise and fall... but if there is a future technology that Apple can harness for future profits (as they have shown they can in the past), they might have to ride out a few years on their savings to get there. It is akin to what biologists call a small valley in the fitness landscape, before ascending the next peak. It is better to make your moves from a position of strength- Apple waited until screen, battery and CPU tech had advanced to the point that a mass-market tablet was practical, whereas MS had jumped the gun with XP Tablet Edition some years before (though it always had some niche users- my car mechanic has used touch-screen Windows PCs for years, an increasing part of his job is interrogating the car's systems. )

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Dave 126
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From http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-21377915

Mr Einhorn has a history of activism.

In 2011, he urged Microsoft Corp to get rid of its chief executive Steve Ballmer, accusing him of being "stuck in the past".

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Ubuntu for Galaxy Nexus phones to arrive in February

Dave 126
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Re: great for linux geeks...

Canonical were talking about business deployments (I know of a couple of businesses that issue Linux laptops or bootable Linux USB sticks for the purposes of connecting to the company network) as being what they had in mind for this.

App support? Well, it runs anything in the repositories that runs on ARM, doesn't it? You won't be trying to use Libre Office via the touchscreen, but with traditional mouse and keyboard. Curious that no Reg article mentions whether or not Android apps can run under Unbuntu- but if they can be made to run on BlackBerry's new OS, I would have thought Ubuntu could be persuaded. Thoughts?

My understanding is limited, but can't the really geeky users will just replace Unity with their preferred DE? It seems strange that as an outside, one just hears lots of noise about Linux GUIs, just as there is about Win8 Metro... anyone even moderately geeky will just install work-arounds, no?

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Dave 126
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Re: Expansion

>serious ear bashing from the other half/kids if they cant watch TV because Dad needs to get on with a bit of work

Quite a few households boast a second TV in the kitchen or bedroom. The amazement shown by the family in Back to the Future when Marty McFly lets slip he has two TVs is a bit 1955.

But yeah- you've either got to dig some keyboard out of a drawer, or carry one around with you. Neither ideal.

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Dave 126
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Re: This would be good

>The Ubuntuphone does... just plug in the appropriate peripherals and voilà - a real computer!

All good until you have an incoming call, then realise that you haven't got your headset to hand...

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Dave 126
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Re: This would be good

>Do many other smartphones have HDMI and docks?

A fair few have microHDMI and USB OTG- which can be used for mice, keyboards and memory sticks. The LG-built Nexus 4 does not support USB OTG (though early promotional materials suggest Google thought it would) so this might explain Canonical's decision to use an older Nexus handset.

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Bioshock Infinite, Devil May Cry, SimCity

Dave 126
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Thumb Up

I like this monthly round up of games format, as opposed to three pages about a single game. It is good you have given us a general heads-up of interesting titles- which if they interest us can be more deeply researched elsewhere.

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Dave 126
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Re: Simcopter reports heavy internet trafic!

Reticulating splines!

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Paper computers: Not mere pulp fiction

Dave 126
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> I assume that you are the type of idiot the advertisers (and Apple) love.

I seem to remember phones being on 12 month contracts. It was the rise of the smartphone, spearheaded by the iPhone, that has lead to 18 and 14 month contracts being the norm.

It's FUD anyway- biodegradable in the ground != short-lived in your pocket.

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British games company says it owns the idea of space marines

Dave 126
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Re: Buzz Lightyear?

Buzz Lightyear was a Space Ranger, as was Isaac Asimov's Lucky Starr in Pirates Of The Asteroids.

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Now UK must look out for crappy SPACE weather - engineers

Dave 126
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Re: Tin foil hats

Re Tin Foil Hats:

This is a classic, I first saw in Victor Lewis Smith's Private Eye series, though it would qualify for a near-Darwin Award. On the dangers of protecting your body with flexible materials:

Man Sues Tom Ridge Over Duct Tape Fears

Corona, CA - Tom Ridge's advice to Americans to stock up on duct tape and plastic has sparked a lawsuit which has been filed against him, the Department of Homeland Security and President George W. Bush.

Steven J. Bosell, the owner of B & B Construction in Corona, California, has filed a lawsuit claiming emotional distress, personal injury and sexual dysfunction after he wrapped his "privates" in duct tape to protect them from a biological attack.

"After watching Mr. Ridge on television advising us to stock up on duct tape and plastic, I went to the local Costco and bought $100 worth of duct tape to protect myself", Bosell said. "When I got home, I taped up my windows and doors. After I did that I realized if survivors like myself are going to reproduce and populate the Earth after a biological attack, we have to protect our privates as well."

Bosell claimed in his lawsuit he wrapped his "privates" in duct tape as test of "Homeland Security". When he tried to remove the tape, Bosell injured himself when the tape began peeling off skin and body hair. After calling an ambulance, Bosell was taken to the hospital where the doctors and nurses laughed at him.

"I told the doctors and nurses at the hospital if they laughed, I would file a lawsuit against them and the hospital. They laughed anyways and I now have another lawsuit pending" Bosell said with tears streaming down his face. "They went out their way to make me look like a fool. Once I saw the doctors scalpel go toward my privates, I totally lost it and blacked out".

Also named in the lawsuit is the President of the United States, George W. Bush. "President Bush is just as liable for injury to my reproductive future because he hired Mr. Ridge to run the Department of Homeland Security and Mr. Ridge gave the nation bad advice. They also make me look like a fool." Bosell sobbed.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Bush Administration have no comment on Mr. Bosell's lawsuit.

-http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/858430/posts

unverified by Dave 126

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200 million office workers gagging for a... Microsoft Surface?

Dave 126
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I don't even get a '0' in that area where the number of comments is displayed, on both Chrome and IE... once some has left a comment, I can join in, but I can't be the first. I've slowly looked over the page, looking for the comment link, but can't see it. I've tried clicking on the empty space where the number of comments is displayed, but it doesn't work. Something is broken, and there wasn't a Reg post promoting this strange change.

-Confused.

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The Register: Our all-new app now available for Android

Dave 126
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Re: This

At least Theregister.co.uk has the common decency not to throw up a dialogue "An app is available for this website, do you want to install it? OK / Cancel" when I access it from my phone's browser. Thank you Reg!

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Astronomers unravel solar system's strange energy 'ribbon'

Dave 126
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Re: astroboffins

As last lines in a movie go, I always liked "I'm going to get you astro-bastards!" at the end of Bad Taste.

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Review: Living with Microsoft's new Surface Pro

Dave 126
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Re: Magnesium?

Its a surface area thing... holding a match to a log probably won't start a fire, but shavings of the same log will catch alight quite easily. Magnesium and magnesium aluminium alloys are widely used for products- in part because the magnesium makes the aluminium easier to cast.

I don't know if a li-ion battery fire creates enough heat and temperature to get a cast magnesium alloy laptop chassis going well.

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Dave 126
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Re: Wedge Touch Mouse Surface Edition, SD card, $$$

Yeah, it does seem daft that my laptop always has a very small 'nano' dongle plugged in for the mouse (though I have plenty of USB sockets at the moment). It would seem trivial to incorporate it into the machine itself, a la Bluetooth (though I don't think my Bluetooth can kept on when my wireless is turned off for battery saving). If Bluetooth isn't up to the job for mice, I wish Logitech would license their dongles to be built into these machines that have a scarcity of USB sockets.

In fact, do female USB sockets have to be as big as there are? There seem to be plenty of card-reader dongles that seem perfectly happy using only a PCB-thick male plug? Obviously a smaller female plug wouldn't be directly backward-compatible, but an adaptors would be very cheap, and flexible adaptors would avoid the component damage that can result from having rigid objects protruding from a mobile device.

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Dave 126
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Re: Very unfortunate

That kickstand implementation is just daft- a super portable device that isn't as easy to use on your lap as a conventional netbook/laptop?

MS could remedy this issue by bringing out a folding keyboard/case variant that does a better job of holding the screen at an angle. They could even bring out a keyboard/case that holds the tablet 6" above the back of the keyboard, so that the typing position is better for the user's posture. The difficulty is that unlike a conventional laptop, the Surface is top-heavy.

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Dave 126
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Re: Guess I'll got one - it looks great to be used together my camera.

I would have thought that DSLR owners would find an iPad the better companion device- its higher resolution 4:3 screen is closer to the 3:2 ratio that most DSLRs use, and there are already iOS DSLR remote-control options available.

With the low cost of SD cards these days, dumping a series of pictures onto a portable HDD isn't as handy as once it was.

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Tracy brothers are back: Thunderbirds Are Go! again in 5... 4... 3...

Dave 126
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Re: I'm worried...

>CGIed it, PCfied it and all the magic around the original was gone.

With luck, WETA Studios won't do that.. the company that gave us Brain Dead and District 9 might do well!

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Samsung puts Silicon Valley on a plate in $100m all-you-can-eat

Dave 126
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Re: "the internet of Things"?

>WTF is the internet of things?

It's like the internet of computers, but with things. Specifically, it refers to real-world objects being uniquely addressable, for the purposes including stock control, maintenance and home automation. Coffee pots*, door locks, light bulbs, window blinds, thermostats etc.

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trojan_Room_coffee_pot

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BlackBerry 10: Good news, there's still time to fix this disaster

Dave 126
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Re: A new (?) idea...

I've previously posted a similar idea- but since minimum size of your dongle device is dictated by its battery, you might as well slap a keypad and small screen on it and have it function as a dumbphone when you haven't bought a flashy big-screened device with you. My concept was effectively: [for the pocket: cheap, compact, easy-to-use durable dumbphone with long battery life that can act as 3G hotspot] plus [for the bag or car: larger tablet device when you want it].

The 'real world' issue with your concept is that devices in the bottom of rucksacks often get mislaid, and if someone is rushing out of their house, they might not grab both devices- leaving them with either only a headless dongle or an unconnected 'phone'.

It is always refreshing to reads fellow commentards own ideas for how gadgets should be, though, so keep it up! : D

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Hard drive sales to see double-digit dive this year

Dave 126
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Re: Still using them here

I guess the paranoid would make at least two archival copies on optical disks from different disc manufactures- just in case some latent disc decay manifests itself some years down the line.

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Android gets tipsy on Wine, runs WINDOWS apps

Dave 126
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Re: @AC 12:53 GMT

>Eadon - I see you've gone anon for these types of comments now

Yeah, I don't think I've seen him post as 'Eadon' since that Ubuntu on Samsung story.

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Ten 3D printers for this year's modellers

Dave 126
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Re: Cheap 3D scanners

>What about something like a nut with an internal thread?

Most of the engineering CAD packages have 'feature recognition', so scanned meshes are converted (if possible) into geometric data. e.g, if you scan a cylinder, the result will be an approximation- a collection of triangles. Feature Recognition will attempt to turn this collection of triangles back into an ideal cylinder, with a smooth surface defined as being a constant from a central axis. This parametric model allows you more control, parts can be defined relative to each other, so design changes result in the entire model being updated. An internal thread will be the same- it is better if the CAD software re-creates it (threads are often included in the parts library) or just creates a plain hole that can be tapped after the shape is printed or milled.

The amount of user 'massaging' of the data seems to vary on the 3D scanning method, software and subject.

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Dave 126
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Re: Printing in wax?

This fella had some success casting aluminium by burning away the PLA print material in place of wax:

http://3dtopo.com/lostPLA/

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Dave 126
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Cheap 3D scanners

There is the XBOX Kinect at just over £100, using open source software, and also the pricier Windows Kinect with either open source software or the MS SDK. More suitable for body-sozed figures than faces. There are also software solutions- for free is Autodesk's 123D which can create a 3D STL file from a series of 2D images.

Other software solutions use a web-cam plus a cheap (£30) line-laser.

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Samsung: Never mind Steve Jobs, let's snap off a piece of stylus biz

Dave 126
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Re: History in the making

The Modbook tablet ( a 3rd party customised Macbook with a Wacom digitiser over the screen) was launched in 2007, and has since been updated. Unlike the Samsung devices, the Modbook runs full-fat Photoshop.

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Dave 126
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Re: Or

A keyboard might be better for creating ASCII art than traditional sketches.

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Dave 126
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Re: Round and round....

It won't be full circle- no one is suggesting abandoning finger-touch as it suitable for many tablet based tasks- especially those centred around making calls, browsing and consuming media. What you lose in accuracy you gain in modifiers i.e 'gestures'. Bringing in multi-touch wasn't just difference for the sake of it.

Tasks that require accuracy - hand-written notes, sketches, entering mathematical formulae- work better with a stylus. Not everyone uses their tablet for productivity tasks like these, but it is good to have the option.

The Wacom tablet on my laptop hasn't rendered my mouse obsolete, nor has its gamepad or IR remote made its keyboard a waste of space.

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Nokia shares $1.35bn EU graphene research grant

Dave 126
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Re: Prior Art...

Arthur C Clarke:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fountains_of_Paradise

Though being himself, the author's afterword does does discuss the the current state of material technology, gives credit to those who originally conceived of the idea, and admits he used poetic licence in shifting the location of Sri Lanka to the equator.

Feersum Enjin is a fun (non Culture) sci fi novel by Ian M Banks set around a 'space elevator'.

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ESA proposes 3D printing on the moon

Dave 126
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Re: Moon power

Power? If you use an aimed solar furnace, you just need a large convex mirror- probably made out of foil, plus mirrors for aiming. It doesn't have to be strong enough to withstand wind (there isn't any) and the structure can be lighter than an equivalent structure on Earth, due to the lower gravity. Erecting lightweight structures with high surface ares is something space engineers have some experience of- the whole shebang can probably be shipped in one unit and then unfurled, like an umbrella.

I'm not saying it will defiantly work, but it seems plausible.

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Google's Glasses: The tech with specs appeal?

Dave 126
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Terminator

Re: They need to be available

>Of course a couple of coloured LEDs would be sufficient to tell me about emails/sms/missed calls/incoming calls etc

many phones do that with just one composite light- different colours / flashing patterns for different alerts.

And just three LEDs would allow the thing to act as a compass or GPS guide.

Still, I ain't getting one til it outlines motorcycles and jackets, informing me if they are my size > see icon.

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Netbooks were a GOOD thing and we threw them under a bus

Dave 126
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An idea: daft or not daft?

Hmmm.... What's the largest downside of netbooks? The screen (not enough vertical pixels!). What are ever more people buying? Tablets- some with lots of pixels.

How about a 'screenless netbook' -an x86 machine with keyboard, designed to use a tablet as its monitor? I appreciate that tablets don't usually work as dumb (USB) monitors, and that setting it to work as a wireless monitor using software would present challenges (if the x86 base doesn't have its own screen to setup this configuration) ... but still, it would be nice. Hell, if Brand X offered a tablet, and Brand Y offered a similarly specified machine but with the option to use it as a dumb monitor, I would buy Brand Y- if only to extend my normal laptop's desktop on occasion.

The x86 base would give you access to legacy software, choice of OS and allow all the usual connections and storage options. The ARM tablet / screen would give you instant-on checking of emails and whatnot.

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Dave 126
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Re: Battery life and ARM

Indeed, Tomshardware have the impression the ARm vs x86 race is far from over. The fact that Intel are inviting investigation into power efficiency is in itself telling:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/atom-z2760-power-consumption-arm,3387-5.html

Although the results we're looking at today are generated at Intel, we were on-site looking at and playing with the company's test equipment as the numbers were being run, observing the results. We’ve also done enough of our own analysis from previously-published reviews to confirm that these numbers make sense. Intel is picking the easiest competitor to beat (Tegra 3 running under Windows RT on a Microsoft Surface), but our own preliminary estimates suggest the 32 nm Atom is going to be roughly equivalent to Qualcomm's 28 nm APQ8060A in the ATIV Tab, and more efficient than the 32 nm Exynos 5 Dual in the Chromebook Series 3 XE303C12.

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