Feeds

* Posts by Dave 126

4046 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Panasonic slaps Freetime EPG on 2014 smart tellies

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Ratios

I hate the stretching of older content. I might be a couple of minutes into an episode of Father Ted when I notice Dougal's head is strangely wide, placing him in the 'uncanny valley'.

Is it actually broadcast like that, or is the TV set trying to be helpful? If the former, could a TV be told to 'unstretch' the content? Or is it easier to just download the content off the internet that someone has ripped from a DVD?

When the BBC show older content on iPlayer, they don't stretch it. However, since I have a 16:10 monitor, I have black bars at the sides and at the top and bottom of the image, since it isn't very smart about filling the screen.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: All I want

I enjoyed the Alec Guinesss version of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy on YouTube... More recently, True Detective was excellent. There is a world of good stuff out there, but discovering it can be tricky. Who knows, you might develop a taste for Soviet-made 'Easterns' films...

However, good content benefits from a coherent way of finding and viewing it. Using an IR remote control to navigate on-screen menus isn't a great experience. One of the better methods I've seen is using an app on an iPad that allows you to search YouTube and then instruct a PS3 to play it on the big screen. There's no technical reason that a generic tablet couldn't be used with a generic set-top-box to navigate both broadcast and streamed video services in a similar fashion.

It'll get there.

1
0

Actually, there is an Arapaho word for 'pliers'

Dave 126
Silver badge

Paper clip Vs Pliers

Another situation in which I have used pliers instead of a paper clip:

Needing to restore a router to factory settings, I used a pair of pliers to 'nibble' a larger hole in the plastic casing so that the reset microswitch could be accessed with a screwdriver.

2
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Journalistic Integrity

>Maybe an article on other uses for paper clips?

Resetting / restoring routers?

It's worth noting that some of the advanced uses for a paper clip require the intervention of a pair of pliers.

If you need to hold some papers together and can't find a paper clip, you can use a pair of pliers and an elastic band to achieve the same. The pliers will double as a paper weight. An additional bonus is that they won't jam the sheet feeder in a multi-page photocopier.

2
0

Dying for an Ubuntu Linux phone? Here's how much it'll cost you

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: "emotional connection"?

>But then, with Linux he's only targetting the Linux crowd, which is tiny.

That can change. Lots of people use a Linuxy OS on their phones, and the Unix-like OSX enjoys double figure market share in some territories. Valve are marketing a Linux-based gaming OS.

At the same time, some people are using browser-based productivity software - which means they aren't tied to any OS as much as they once might have been.

Specific CAD software ties me to Windows, so I'm not a regular Linux user - but software-as-a-service and remote hardware resources for rendering mean that the idea of cloud-based CAD isn't without merit.

3
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Smartphones

> Every so often I have to reboot this damn thing because it claims to have signal but acts like it doesnt.

You can also try turning 'Airplane Mode' on and then off again... its quicker than rebooting the whole phone. A work-around, not a solution, for an annoying situation.

1
0

The browser's resized future in a fragmented www world

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: TBL is MS!

Can't copy text from curry.co.uk on Chrome... Win 7 64. Fair enough- it was just that i was reading up on the pessimists views, and the inability to copy text was one of their fears. I'll try Curyys again with a difgferent browser tomorrow, when I'm sober.

Cherrs all

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: TBL is MS!

>Once you unleash DRM you'll regret it. It won't be applied sensibly.

Er, last I looked DRM is already unleashed. Websites are already able to frustrate attempts to copy text (to check reviews of a product they are selling, for example). An example of silliness can be seen on the Currys site. Just try copying text from the webpage below:

http://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/clearance-photography-1902-commercial.html?intcmp=home~Camera-clearance~clearance~r4~half~c7~cp1902~070314

But hey, people are free to shop with someone else.

1
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: TBL is MS!

>So T B-L is going to personally ensure that every DRM system is implemented on Windows, OS X, iOS, Android, Firefox OS, Tizen, Blackberry, Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora.... is he?

Look it up [that is the joy of the connected web]:

TBL was only ever talking about DRM in relation to an API in HTML 5 for discovering and using DRM systems.

The alternate situation is one in which content providers only release content through propriety applications that only run on a small number of OSs, such Windows, OSX, iOS and Android.

In real life, people are free to make agreements with each other. I can choose to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement. If I choose not to sign it, I accept that I won't get to see the interesting McGuffin that the other party might have shown me.

2
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: re - "Fragmentation is hurting the PC and the browser, yes"

>The IOS web browser is by far the worst one out there, maybe because there is no 30% Apple tax on the web.

Websites, say IMDB or eBay, release free apps. Hold on a moment whilst I do the maths... 30% of $0.00 is... lets see now... um... yep, I got it: $0.00. What figure did you arrive at AC?

What is irritating is that number of websites that throw up a 'Install our app!' when accessed through a mobile browser... but this annoyance is common to both iOS and Android.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: TBL is MS!

>DRM is anti-freedom, anti-openness, anti-user. It should not be encouraged.

You've confused the current flawed and propriety implementations of DRM with the concept itself.

All T-B-L suggested was that if DRM is to be used, it should be cross-platform and sensibly implemented. Then content creators will have the freedom to choose whether to implement it, and users will be free to engage with it or not. The user may choose not to, in which case the content creator can choose to reassess their business model. Choice and freedom.

Most users are quite happy to pay for a DVD or Blu-ray. Most people consider their Netflix subscription to be fairly priced. If there is a legitimate way to watch paid-for protected content on a portable, off-line device, most users wouldn't have a problem with that either, as long as it is reliable, easy and device-agnostic. User friendly.

12
3

Finally! Some actual, novel tech: Apple patent to revive geriatric gear

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Your power supply already adapts

>Hang on... why does it make any sense for a tech company to prolong the life of shiny and extend the product refresh cycle.. [?]

Because some products are sold as being more reliable than rivals. There have been several studies, using different methodologies, that suggest that Toshiba, Lenovo and Apple laptops are more reliable than some other brands. (My Dell is soldiering on handsomely. Sample size = 1, though!). Reliability is a factor that some people take into account when they purchase equipment, especially if they intend to resell it a few years down the line.

In addition, it costs a company money if a device fails within its guarantee period.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Prior art

Er, that's the case with most most ECUs. For that reason, the ECU firmware is specific to the vehicle, not the model.There, making a modification to it requires the mechanic clone the firmware, alter it, and then re-flash the ECU.

But prior art? Read the penultimate paragraph of the article.

0
0

Does Apple's iOS 7 make you physically SICK? Try swallowing version 7.1

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Date-castrophe

I'm with you there, SonderTwyful.

I've had Samsung feature phones and Sony Android phones that think that spinning wheels are a suitable form of date/time input.

Why?! To remind that I'm setting an alarm and not using the calculator?

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Context, AC, context. Appelbaum was talking about an NSA tool for compromising iPhones, and his suspicions that Apple were aiding them.

Not even Blackphone are claiming their offering is NSA proof.

2
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Sensible keyboard

> I find it rather disconcerting that the iOS keyboard just stays stuck looking the same.

The letters on my laptop's keyboard are in caps all the time.

8
2

Snowden: You can't trust SPOOKS with your DATA

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: I know the Reg hates Google but @Howverydare

>I doubt what I do on the internet really interests them that much. And if you think your internet activity is that interesting to them, might I suggest a room with nice, soft walls and a big jacket?

True, what I do as an individual doesn't interest the NSA. However, it gets insidious when you consider that political groups are monitored - The US gov has been happy to subvert democracy in the past by undermining legitimate political groups that have been deemed to be 'un-American'.

Of course, one man's political group is another man's bunch of nutters. And one man's political group can be painted as a group of nutters if that serves another man's interests.

5
1

Projector on a smartphone? There's a chip for that

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: This one *is* different

"We could put this in your phone" is often just a shorthand way of saying "smaller / fewer moving parts / lower power consumption than the existing way of doing things".

0
0

Not just for Glasswipes: Google to drop SDK for all Android wearables

Dave 126
Silver badge

lmgtfy is 6 letters, so I can't be arsed to patronise him.

0
0

Neil Young touts MP3 player that's no Piece of Crap

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Is it that time already?

24 bit describes the dynamic range of each sample point, and khz how many thousand sample points each second. We use the same unit, hz, for describing pitch, but it is a different thing.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Another one?

Fair dooes! My late mate's solution was to have, in addition to his separates and 12" for his own use, a real jukebox loaded up with 45s for use during drunken parties- Rolling Stones, Hendrix, Kinks, Small Faces etc - and a tray of old-size 10p coins for guests.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: “high resolution” albums

> Almost no one seems to care, most people just use their phone now.

The LG G2 can playback 192khz 24bit FLAC files natively. Reviews I've read of its audio performance are subjective, as you would expect, but generally positive.

3
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Another one?

Your vinyl will wear with time, and then there situations when perhaps you don't want to handle your precious discs (drunken parties etc). There is some software that captures vinyl at 192 khz before the pre-amp, and then applies the RCA curve on playback, but it's OSX only.

1
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Am i being a numpty

It can do lossless compression. It can also compress 192khz 24bit audio. There are already online stores that will sell you music in this format, as well as some blu-ray discs.

To play it back in the home doesn't require anything too exotic- a good quality external DAC, or some AV receivers. On the hoof, there is the Colorfly player, or the LG G2 phone.

2
0

Why can’t I walk past Maplin without buying stuff I don’t need?

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Cured !

I almost bought a load of cheap cheerful junk from China last week, but I took so long assembling my order that the website cleared by virtual shopping basket. I escaped!

I haven't yet placed an order - let alone be in a position to recommend them after receiving my goods - but banggood.com is somewhere I can waste a lot of time just looking at things.

1
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: stuff that is plugged in with 13 amp plugs draw less than 300mA anyway.

>Or did you have something else in mind?

Sorry, I wasn't very clear. I meant energy lost in the cabling between the end device and the step-down transformer.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Maplins real purpose...

Haha!

Eleanor Shaw of Bristol, whose husband is a Maplin regular, said: “I knew he couldn’t need that many external hard drives. Deep down, I knew it.

“It even has pulsing disco lights in the window.”

3
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: stuff that is plugged in with 13 amp plugs draw less than 300mA anyway.

>No-one has too many adaptors and never will until someone standardised a low voltage home rail circuit

You do realise that the lower the voltage the larger amount of energy is lost as heat?

At least a good number of my 'wall-warts' are USB-based these days, so phones, mice, tablets, ereaders etc are catered for. Half the time you don't need the wall-wart because there will be a device (PC, TV, stero etc) near by that has a USB socket.

A 12v standard would be nice, but to be honest I don't have much in the way of 12v kit... and in any case, I guess 12v kit might vary too much in the amount of current it draws.

3
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Great headline!

I spent an hour wandering around Maplins last week - again, I didn't actually need anything. After inspecting spray cleaners and lubricants (IPA yes, acetone no, alas), flashlights, something called Sugru, and some self-adhesive magnetic tape, I came away with a USB-OTG cable, three little keyring screw cannisters for storing small things, and a microSD card which was, amazingly, very reasonably priced.

I did notice that they were selling microHDMI > HDMI cables for £45, whereas an independent computer shop near me sells them for £6.00.

Still, being able to get parts for a project the same day is often invaluable.

2
0

Windows 8.1 Update 1 spewed online a MONTH early – by Microsoft

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Brilliant

>Applying updates with no description of what the update is supposed to be doing. And with no idea if these are the final, official updates, or some kind of beta or internal rc release. And no idea if they have any impact on your drivers.

Well, there is only one way to find out, hey?

Seriously though - the sort of people who are keen for these updates would make an image of C:, and just restore it if things go pear-shaped. No problem.

2
0

Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Drifting OT ... one thing I recall

If you want a Chorded Keyboard case for smartphones with Bluetooth, throw some money at this lad - or encourage him to get on Kickstarter:

http://www.srimech.com/chorded-keyboard-for-mobile-phones.html

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Chorded typing!

Maybe Qwerty keyboard are inherently unsuitable for writing text on the hoof? [Discuss! : D]

Chorded typing, a la Microwriter, is fairly quick with one hand, or so I have been led to believe. Has anyone here any experience of it?

This lad has knocked together an Arduino prototype of a chorded keyboard case for smartphones:

http://www.srimech.com/chorded-keyboard-for-mobile-phones.html

1
0

Bloke rattles tin for giant 3D two-headed beast

Dave 126
Silver badge

>someday I'll be able to e-mail a file to my local 3D fabbing shop for either pick-up or delivery.

You can today, just as you have been able to do so for years.

In the last couple of years we have seen websites such as Ponoko.com aimed at 'hobbyists', whereas previously such services were aimed at, though not exclusive to, commercial users.

Alternatively, search the web for your local 'maker group' and negotiate a price.

3D CAD software has had 'File'> 'Print to...'> [3D printing bureau] for a few years now. Otherwise, STL files usually come in at under the max size allowed by most email services.

Hell, even my local timber yard offers CNC cut materials at around £100 per hour (but their machine is so fast that in reality this service only adds around 20% to the cost of 4' x 8' plywood or MDF).

1
0

X-rated Android antics: Motorola's Moto X puts boot in chunky brother

Dave 126
Silver badge

@Craigness

You're right, most phones have gyroscopes these days. What many phones don't have, but the Moto X does, is a dedicated low power co-processor that can constantly monitor the gyroscopes and microphones for input... if it validates a signal as a deliberate human input it can wake the main CPU.

2
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

> [ Shaking the phone ] a surprisingly quick and easy way to fire the camera up. It’s not a feature I recall coming across on a mobile phone before which, on reflection, I find surprising.

I would have thought that this feature was a by-product of the same low power chip that also monitors the microphone for 'touchless voice commands', and so is not seen on other phones because they lack the hardware. I might be wrong, but if you are going to include an always-on chip to wake up the main CPU in response to sensor input, this seems a good use of it.

Apple have implemented an always-on low power chip for similar purposes - capturing accelerometer data without waking up the rest of the (new) iPhone.

0
0

Reg reader rattles tin for GoPro camera 'Stubilizer'

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: In software instead?

Rubbish In, Rubbish out.

He covered this in his first post... to stabilise digitally would require a lot of cropping.

1
0

Alcatel unveils 'cheaper-than-Chromebook' Lapdock-alike phablet-powered laptop

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: The Future

I'm not sure that a hub exists that will be let you use MHL and USB-OTG at the same time. Maybe a Bluetooth keyboard is your best bet: (scroll to near the bottom of the thread)

http://androidforums.com/samsung-galaxy-nexus/457427-simultaneous-otg-hdmi.html

0
0

Dashboard Siri! Take me to the airport! NO, NOT the RUNWAY! Argh!

Dave 126
Silver badge

>Really why would a manufacturer design a dash around what seems basically to be a screen that will work only with one type of phone?

It is only being offered as an 'option' on cars - the buyer pays their money, they take their choice. Honda and GM are part of both Apple's 'Carplay' *and* Google's ' Open Automotive Alliance' efforts.

Google is working on a rival system, but one that doesn't require a phone - all the 'brains' are integrated into the car. One can imagine just plugging a Android 'black box' into this Apple-led system to turn it into a Google system.

1
0

Apple investors fall for CEO Cook's product-presentation prank

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: This article bore no resemblance to the actual news

I've met/known a few very wealthy individuals... one of them, worth billions, comes into work everyday at the engineering company he founded. Before Christmas each year, he spends two weeks travelling to all his sites and greeting every employee - and he listens. He asked one junior assembly worker who didn't recognise him, if anything could be better, and the reply was "Yeah, the f$%king computers are a bit shite". The middle managers, who had failed to escalate the issue, squirmed where they stood, and IT services were in that assembly cell a day later, installing new kit.

0
0

Open source 3D sensing libraries kiboshed, maybe by Apple

Dave 126
Silver badge

The code will remain available, so in essence all this news means is that PrimeSense are no longer supply staff and hosting for the website. It was already known that they would stop selling their sensors.

The Kinect 2.0 already uses a different technology, as does Creative, Intel and others. I don't know what that 3D sensing Google phone (for developers) uses.

http://community.openni.org/openni/topics/future_of_openni

0
0

Apple fanbois DENIED: Mac Pro deliveries stalled until April

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: American QA?

Its a little unfair to use this example to compare Taiwan and Texas, since the manufacturing processes are different.

Assuming that delay is not due to component suppliers like Intel or AMD, my guess would be that it is the deep-drawn aluminium enclosure that is causing the delay, only because it is a manufacturing process that takes some fine tuning.

0
1

Frenchman eyes ocean domination with floating, mobile Bond villain lair

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Already been done

Whilst we're all geeking out on things deep:

http://arstechnica.com/science/2014/02/the-exosuit-a-wearable-submarine-for-visiting-deep-water/

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

It's just assumed that the Rolex in the books is an Oyster Perpetual, since the first book was published a year before the Submariner was released.

Come the first Connery film, Rolex wouldn't lend the production a watch, so they used a Submariner belonging to the film's producer, Cubby Broccoli.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Rolex?

Bond had a few Seikos in the 1980s, between his Rolex and Omega periods. One of them printed out messages, another had a camera and a display - which 007 uses to snap a picture of a lady's décolletage. Looking at the Seiko G757 Sports 100 (device for tracking Fabergé eggs not included), I'm reminded of the Samsung Galaxy Gear watch - especially the four crosshead bolts on the face.

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Shurely Shome Mishtake?

Looks more like the Operation Hennessey Underwater SeaLab from the film the Life Aquatic.

5
0

Apple's Windows XP moment: OS X Snow Leopard left to DIE

Dave 126
Silver badge

> Apple asks you to buy new hardware for its whole cost because your six years old one is no longer supported, quite not as bad as MS.... ooooh, Apple is so nice to customers....

You're talking about hardware that struggles to play back HD video, FFS... most people have moved on by now.

0
5

Lenovo banks on $1 BEELLION Moto turnaround in SIX quarters

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: If Lenovo do to Motorola what they did to ThinkPad

The only vendor of laptops with 16:10 screens is Apple.

If I'm wrong, PLEASE do include a link!

0
0
Dave 126
Silver badge

Eh? The Moto G already runs stock Android, KitKat.

0
1

Pine trees' scent 'could prevent climate change really being a problem'

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Why the fuck would he bother?

You must have missed Lord Lawson on BBC Radio 4's 'Today' programme, then.

8
0

Steve Jobs statue: Ones and ohs and OH NOES – it's POINTING at us

Dave 126
Silver badge

Re: Art for Art's sake

>You can always rely on a sculptor to be so arrogantly fixated on their own idea of 'Art' that the subject matter gets completely ignored.

That's not really a problem if you have lots of sculptors submitting proposals for the same commission... it is then the selection panel that chooses the final piece.

Infact, one would use a sculptor *because* they have their own idea of art (you wouldn't expect them to fixate on somebody else's idea of art, surely? It's not as if there is a public consensus on what art is, either); otherwise you'd just use a 3D scanner and a 3D printer to create a mold for casting.

0
0