2713 posts • joined Wednesday 21st July 2010 13:57 GMT
Re: So I guess these are all 1366x768?
@ jason 7
I'm with you on wanting a higher resolution screen. For slightly Ultrabooks you may find the Wikipedia article for 'Ultrabook' a good starting place, as it has a chart showing which models have a 1600x900 display.
Something I haven't seen mentioned is a possible reason for an abundance of low-resolution screens on Ultrabooks. i.e One of Intel's requirements is for a minimum battery life, in hours. Could the difference in power consumption between a hi-res and low-res screen be big enough to influence the choice of screen resolution seen on most Ultrabooks? After all, the manufacturer has to use a proscribed chipset, and and can only fit so large a battery within the maximum WxLxH Kg allowed for in the Ultrabook brand (and in any case, the maker is too busy trying the grab the 'thinnest lightest laptop ever!' crown)
Re: No mention of Ivy Bridge?
> 'Rather mis-timed article in my opinion.'
Possibly... but then the introduction of the new Ivy Bridge models might result in the price of some of the above models being cut, making them a more tempting purchase.
The American's call Heath Robinson machines "rube goldberg", for those here who want to waste some time on youtube!
I used to love playing T.I.M when visiting my cousins in the US... but later that week Doom was released : D
How bloody noisy?
How noisy would these things be? It would make a city and suburbs unbearable to work and live in, not to mention confusing the hell out the birds who use sound for communication.
That said, and in answer to the problem of using fuel to attain cruising altitude: I like the idea of jumping off the top of a skyscraper with a hang-glider at the end of each day, and gliding home. Going into work I wouldn't be in such a rush : D
Re: Power requirements
> stop/start technology which would reduce the emissions of a ground vehicle to nil
even better, use intelligent traffic control so that ground vehicles don't have to stop at junctions in the first place. If you're going to implement traffic control in the skies, try it on the ground first where its cheaper and safer.
Re: Fly home....
Indeed, it seems that automatic operation is the route the US DOD are looking at for their 'flying jeep' concepts. Also, fully automatic operation means that cost of ownership can be shared amongst individuals - or the vehicle just hired by the minute. After it drops you off, it makes itself useful elsewhere.
However, if reducing congestion is the aim, car sharing would be a better first step- especially now most of us carry communication devices in our pockets that know where we are and can be used to bill us / share costs. I'm happy to share a vehicle with a couple of adults... its the hordes of sodcasting teenagers on busses that do my nut.
Also, saner legislation: A car protects you from the elements buts takes up twice the width of road required for just one person. BMW introduced a scooter with a roof and rollcage, negating the need for leathers, boots, gloves and a helmet. UK legislation insists that a helmet is still required for this machine, despite it being LESS safe than not wearing one, due to extra forces on the neck in the event of a crash.
... or else the Reg will switch to a strange unit of length, like milli-velociraptors.
But seriously, even here in the UK, diagonal screen measurements are almost always given in inches. It gives you the distance in one or two significant figures, and can be roughly estimated to your hand (fore-finger tip to thumb tip roughly equal to 6")
It's that it is applied to screens of differing aspect ratios that can confuse- often to a 16:9 laptop maker's advantage.
Milk: Imperial (doorstep) or Metric (supermarket)
>It would also cannibalise sales from the iPhone 5
Possibly, but on that logic there would be no iPod touch... I'm sure that Apple would find a way to to differentiate a small iPad from a large iPhone; no cellular radios in the budget iPad, for example.
Not sure what the point of a slightly smaller iPad would be, though... it still won't fit in a jacket pocket.
Re: Mmmmmm - black and white
The Leica M-Monochrom is digital; the commenter said that he can't afford one. From his comment we can infer that he intends to continue using his film camera until such a time as his numbers come in the lottery.
Hmmm, I can't quite work out which Panasonic Lumix TZ model the V-Lux 40 is a reworking of.
For a small superzoom camera, Lumix TZs consistantly score well in group tests... and for something designed to be taken lots of places (and so banged, dropped, and possibly lost) the Leica tweaks over the stock Lumix model might not be worth the higher price.
Re: Well, someone has to say it...
I agree with what you said, but the way you put it could be read as being akin to the old "Windows is rubbish, just use Linux" cry.
An install of Linux on a Windows machine is handy for its recovery tools, or as a dedicated OS for online banking... Any more suggestions for 'Uses for Linux on a dual-boot Windows machine'?
F.lux - adjusts the colour temperature of your display according to the time of day. Obviously not for image editing etc, but good for when using web browsers.
MagicISO - A virtual DVD dive.
HDRview - views HDRI (.hdr, .exr) files. Despite my previous comment, IrfanView can't do this - maybe there is a plug in?
VirtualDUB - does loads of video encoding stuff. Turning a sequence of still images into an AVI, for example. Many people might be better served by a specific converter for their needs though. (eg just to get a video onto their PMP)
CoreTemp - tells you how hot your CPUs are. So you put some more books under your laptop in the hope of increasing airflow.
Nice feature of Picasa is that if it is open when you hit PrntScrn, the screengrab is automatically saved (you don't have to manually paste it into Paint etc)
I installed it. I liked it. It worked... for months. Then, one day my icons broke free and scattered themselves all over my desktop again (Win 7 x64). The Fences still work (icons can be dragged back in) but maybe it needs a 'sheepdog' companion to round things up again?!
Re: Well, someone has to say it...
I've always Windows user - the software I use is only available for it. Linux vs Windows is a complete non-argument for me.
However, the first thing I did when I got this PC was to create an additional partition and put Ubuntu on it. I haven't used it much at all, but its good to know it is there- saves carrying around a Linux live CD for 'just in case' situations. Or if I suddenly need functionality only offered by a Linux-only application. But really, its there to indulge my geeky side- the Scientific section of the repository is great - a 3D molecule designer!
Re: Good list
I use Picasa a lot, it's very slick and makes organising photos easy - through the use of 'albums' - and its fast for editing - changes are made 'virtually' and only applied when pictures are exported. For croppping, straightening and other 'eBay photo' fixes its great. Fast for some batch operations, too.
However, this week I have been dealing with TIFFs with alpha layers. Picasa displays the alpha layer as black, so within Picasa I have had to right-click > open with > Irfan View. PNGs with alpha similarly confuse Picasa.
Irfan View displays - and exports- this layer correctly. And Irfan also handles more obscure formats, such as Radience (.hdr) files. However, it could do with more polish (can't get quick zoom to 100%, for example)
Have both, they play well together.
Big appetite for Space combat / sim / explore / trade game...
"Grand Theft Auto - set in a galactic space port..." or "New X-Wing"...
These desires have manifested in me as fanboi anticipation of Bungie's next game, now they are free of Microsoft and that Halo-shaped golden millstone.
Clues appear to point at multi-system space trading/combat/exploring type game... but I may well be just projecting my own 'Elite reborn' wishes on it.
During 3 full days in France this weekend...
...I received five SMS messages from my phone operator telling me their roaming rates. Grr.
> Yeah, like the Carriers are gonna pick up the tab for this aren't they
What cost? They have already built their infrastructure, and charging thousands per gigabyte is just taking the piss. If it costs them orders of magnitude more to supply data to someone on another network, they are doing something wrong.
If you want to talk about costs, look at the history of the UK 3G spectrum auction... the UK gov brought in games theory professors to maximise the governments revenue from the auction to carriers... which seems a bit shitty when UK citizens would be footing the bill.
I really thought 'roboass'...
... was going to be another story about the US military robotic mule. Serves me right for having a vaguely clean mind!
In Michael Bywater's Lost Worlds, he mentions his friend Stephen Fry's observation: That while a a pianola moves the keys by itself, it makes no attempt to replicate the impact of young Mozart's buttocks upon the piano stool.
[Sorry, that was the only prior fart that came to mind, other than last weeks Reg article about robo-hookers]
The pressure from people who pirate has led to popular shows being broadcast at much the same time as they are in the States- 'Mad Men' for example. Without this pressure, we'd still be six months behind (though getting the show through the TV door sooner rather than later allows more time for DVD sales, too)
With films released in the cinema, there is another factor as to why we don't have to wait months: traditionally, reels of cellulose film were expensive to duplicate, so movies would play out in the US before the physical film was shipped to overseas theatres. The same technologies that allowed piracy are the same that have allowed movies to be released simultaneousness worldwide (ie fibre optics and a digital medium)
The Daily Show with John Stewart
...used to be a favourite of mine. Its producer, Comedy Central, used to make it available to people here in the UK on their website. Some time ago, it posted an apology, stating that it doesn't make the show available online in territories where it had licensed the rights to broadcast to a 3rd party. Which is perfectly reasonable - I could watch it on Channel 4's 4OD service, and take in their advertising. That is until Channel 4 ditched the show from their schedule in favour of something with Charlie Brooker in it.
Comedy Central haven't reinstated the service on their website (including the archive of old shows which Channel 4 never provided access to) at the request of Channel 4. Channel 4 are playing stupid and claimed, in an email to me, that they have no influence on Comedy Central's policy. It's a dog-in-the-manger situation. What happened to you, Channel 4? you used to be cool! [a long time ago, before Big Brother]
Its been a while since I've looked about for a work around.... I got halfway down a list of possible proxies, but gave up...
Re: @ Qwarty
Thanks for your reply, Qwarty. Good point - Win8 desktop apps being able to offload toolbars to a Win8 tablet would seem a good idea - and might even give people a convincing reason to buy a Win8 tablet over a Android / Apple device. (Though an Android tablet could implement this feature without MS's blessing, if its hardware allowed it to be a USB monitor)
Seems MS got off to a false start a few years back, with those widgets that were supposed to work on a laptop's (hypothetical) small secondary display - can never remember what they were called.
Re: So many things wrong.
The CGI artists probably did know better, but it's only a concept vid, with limited time and budget! Heck, ILM have made similar school boy errors in StarWars ep 3 (Ewan McGregor et al flying through a flashy laser battle in an open-sided speeder, and the flashes aren't reflected on their faces). Peter Jackson's WETA Studios tend to do a better job.
I agree, though, that lighting does make a big difference to our perception. StarTrek looks too clean and well lit, BSG looks better for looking like a submarine movie, 2001 ASO just looks great because it was made with real models.
I remember killing lots of people (they were people with red blood, not zombies) with lamp posts. Might even have got a bonus for it.
On the occasions a Warthog becomes my Tool of Destruction in Halo, I think back to those happier times of Carmageddon.
....might find a use for it.
Re: 1366 x 768 WTF?
Why are you expecting downvotes? Yours are commonly held opinions amongst us El Reg commentards.
That taller screens became rare around the same time as the introduction of the Ribbon interface does seem perverse indeed. That a Mac offers the largest MS Office work space, being 16:10 and ribbonless, is just nuts.
Re: Cold water alert
Nothing useful on the moon, except that it isn't Earth. Taking the first steps to developing another basket might be good for the future of us eggs.
I'm sure that research has been conducted on the properties of moon rock as a building material, but yeah, using explosives to create caves seems at first glance to offer a lot of bang for your Kilogram.
Mars- yeah, but the health issues of the journey there haven't been licked yet.
Re: Good thinking, terrible application
Not just making strangely shaped shoes and jewellery that resembles diatoms. The point is that this technology would find applications (financially viable, low labour costs, safe because operators are a distance away) on Earth before being sent to the moon. It doesn't seem that tricky to scale up from millimeters in ABS plastic to meters in concrete. Failing that, it seems the sort of thing the military might throw a few dollars into.
On the subject of politicians being unable to implement anything useful, I have just been listening to 'ABC's Late Night Live' http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/latenightlive/america27s-decline/3983254 about the decline of America. A council of buzz-cut US military leaders at a strategic thinking college have concluded that the US military strength comes from its economic strangth (not vice versa), and that the serious intervention in their nations economic affairs required cannot be accomplished by horse-traders chasing a popular vote every four years. They are not planning a coup, but suggesting a cut back in military spending and deployment, to help get the balance sheets in the black.
It seems you can add military officers to the list of scientists, inventors and writers.
>Both very good at portraying the sheer size of the galaxy against the size of individuals.
As good as Douglas Adams?
"Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space."
Exactly. I can't help that touch-input on a desktop would be better implemented by re-purposing a tablet, placed next to the mouse and keyboard. Until such a time as a manufacturer offers this feature, has anyone tried to bodge it in software over wi-fi?
Re: @bonkers (Interesting, but ...)
> I'm not a cheapskate, but I'd go broke pretty quickly if I paid to view all the interesting stuff that is coming out.
This is a concern even amongst scientists in any given field. There are so many journals that few institutions can afford to subscribe to all that are relevant to their specific discipline. There is some call for reform in the system.
@ Johnny Canuck
That is a very good question. However, in this case they didn't directly study 2.4 million y.o DNA but rather inferred the dates by studying our modern DNA.
Jake's answer is correct, ancient DNA has been extracted from teeth, but this isn't the case regarding this particular story.
Teeth are interesting in more recent archaeology as well, allowing scientists to determine if an individual was raised in one part of Europe before migrating to another part - if they were, say, married off to a distant King for political reasons - by means of examining their isotopic oxygen ratios (which doesn't change after they are formed)
Re: so and so begat so and so
>"What I want to know is how inorganic matter transubstantiates into living stuff. "
After you've taken Turing in your stride, you might also want to consult a dictionary on the word 'organic'.
Re: How will Siri on an iTV know the difference between your voice
>How will Siri on an iTV know the difference between your voice and the voice of the TV presenter(s)?
Pretty easily. The TV knows what audio signal it is sending to the loud speakers. This is then cancelled out from the sound received by the microphone.
Many mobile phones do this to reduce background noise, by using two microphones situated a distance apart. Using the inverse square law, it removes sound that is of much the same volume across the two mikes.
However, the system could evolve to give 'on the fly' subtitles for the deaf.
Re: Webcam, eh?
Bluetac is your friend : D
Re: Not quite...
Perhaps... but seeing as you can't yet do this with your iMac (where there is arguably a reason for doing so: additional iMac screen real-estate whilst file syncing and device charging) then perhaps not. That, and the fact that the iPad would make a handy remote control for the Apple TV.
Re: Something like that, ceratinly...
That I can confirm. I once put a portable site-toilet on eBay, only to find the next day that my listing had been removed at the request of Portakabin, who make Portaloos. Fair play, I guess, but I had never thought about it before, and had just assumed all festival bogs to be 'Portaloos'. Likewise, auxiliary standalone classrooms found on the grounds of seemingly every school in the country...
I can't take seriously anyone who uses 'bing' as a verb, either.
Re: On the one hand...but on the other...
>With how many human interventions during those 140000 miles?
I don't know, but I imagine that there were no serious injuries, else we would have read about them here... unless the car was intelligent enough to reverse back over the victim and then mercilessly pursue any witnesses, a la Duel (1971).
But seriously, Google must be pretty confident of it not hurting anyone, since that doesn't make for good press.
I can see the biggest issue with automated cars being the effect on the part-time human drivers... like finding yourself driving on the right two days after getting back to Blighty from the continent, people might daydream and think that the car is in control.
Computer driver, human navigator...
I once asked Google Maps to plot a route from Birmingham to Truro... which it did fine, except for including a return trip to Merthyr Tydfil before finding its way back to the M5. 'Never ascribe to malice what could be attributed to incompetence', so I won't suggest that the operators of the Severn Bridge and the Welsh Development Agency hold advertising accounts with the Chocolate Factory.
(Sorry to any readers unfamiliar with the South West of the UK mainland... it's the equivalent of Q>T>B>T>P when you wanted Q>P on your keyboard)
Re: On the one hand...but on the other...
Would you be happy with it if were shown, after umpteen thousand hours of testing, to be safer than a human driver?
A human driver might suddenly fall ill, be distracted by their domestic issues, be drunk, be an asshole, not be very good at driving in the first place, drives a grey car in fog and doesn't turn their lights on, falls asleep, is trying to impress his mates, sees an attractive shop window, sees an attractive member of the opposite sex, is wearing high heels, be texting their mates, be listening to a Hendrix guitar solo, gets a fly in their eye, sneezes, drives in the middle of the motorway while not actively overtaking somebody, drops a fag on their lap...
Re: More Censorship from MPs.
I don't think it was the mechanics of operating the rifle that the video game helped Breivik with, but rather situational awareness. I don't know why Keith Vaz has to cite that Norwegian twat when he could have pointed at the US Department of Defence:
[A FPS based on Unreal, developed and distributed by the US DOD. Whilst originally a PR exercise, it has been extended to military training applications]