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* Posts by Pastey

17 posts • joined 10 Sep 2010

It was the Reg what won it: Online Hitchhiker's Guide thriving

Pastey

Re: Yeah.. Sorry, Fuck That.

Right, sorry, I see what you mean. You're using imageshack to post a screenshot.

This sign up method was used when the Guide first launched, and meant that all accounts are definitely associated with a verified account.

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Pastey

Re: Yeah.. Sorry, Fuck That.

Can you please email this to gurus@h2g2.com ?

I can assure you that this is nothing to do with us at the Guide, we don't use imageshack at all, never have, don't think we'll ever need to. I can only guess that there's something gone wrong with either your computer, your mail client or your ISP.

But please contact us so that we can see if we can figure out how to help you.

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Pastey

Re: Mobile

The current front end was written to be part of the overall BBC "Barlesque" skin. We're dumping it as soon as we can, and have rewritten it from scratch so that it does actually work well on anything smaller than a desktop.

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Pastey
Thumb Up

Re: Damn!

If you email gurus@h2g2.com they'll try and get you reunited with your old account

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Jimbo Wales: Wikipedia servers in UK? No way, not with YOUR libel law

Pastey

Re: The libel laws are broken

Wikipedia's not too bad as long as when you go there you know that the information isn't necessarily fact checked. There's an awful lot of good encylopedic content there, and that shouldn't be over looked. However, as others have mentioned, once anything gets to a certain point of popularity it will attract spammers, trolls, and marketing people, all out to get their point across while hopefully stopping other points of view.

I can see where the comparison with h2g2 comes in, they're both community content sites. But the similarities do fade. Wikipedia is very much a top down structure, whilst h2g2 is actually partly owned by the community as well as being run by them. Wikipedia is a more in-depth reference in areas, where h2g2 is more of a Guide.

The easiest way to see the difference is to look up alcohol in each of them.

(full disclosure, I am the technical lead at h2g2)

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Eric Schmidt flicks INTERSTELLAR TOWEL at top tech fair

Pastey
Pint

Re: Screw the technology

Gargle Blaster recipe can be found here: http://h2g2.com/A87738565

It was fun trying it out.

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Coders are creatives too: Where's our love?...

Pastey
WTF?

And yet...

If the marketing people went away, people would still buy for need. If the people who build went away, there'd be less crayons used.

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Smut oglers told to opt in to keep web filth flowing

Pastey
FAIL

I spent some time developing anti-porn software (sorry) and can say full well it doesn't work. Most of the methods in place are frankly pathetic. Especially the ones where they block a domain name, simple, open another site. There's so much movement in the porn industry that blacklisting does not work. And white listing? That's a level of censorship that should never be seen in this country.

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Don't bother with that degree, say IT pros

Pastey

Is it the degree or the education

Firstly, I don't have a degree in computing of any sort. Secondly, I've got about 12 years experience at all levels.

Over the years I've employed developers with and without degrees, and to be honest the ones without degrees tend to be better. Their skill set tends to be more up to date, they tend to be able to think their way around problems. Graduates tended to be only able to do things in one particular way, and that way often two or three years out of date.

This is changing now though. We're seeing graduates who've got themselves some work experience in a real company, learning that a developers job isn't always just sitting down and typing away in your preferred language, coding what you decide you want to code. There's a whole lot more to making yourself employable than just getting a degree. We've had graduates in the past that turn up late, leave early, dress poorly, refuse to answer phones or doors, talk loudly and wonder why they don't last through their trial periods. We've also had bedroom coders with the same problems, but they tend to not think that the job should be theirs because they've got a bit of paper.

But it is changing, some Universities are realising that the degrees they were offering weren't making their students employable so they've started working with companies to give their students "real world" experience.

For me personally though, do I wish I'd gone to uni and got a degree? No. Back then there were no degrees in what I now do. What I could have done would have been a waste of time. IT moves fast, and thankfully the unis are starting to catch up to working at that speed.

Do I think that students deciding whether or not to go to University should go? Yes, but choose *very* carefully which University, and which course you go to. If you can, talk to the people at the sorts of companies you want to work for and find out what *they* think of the degrees. And if you do go, get involved in as much of the social aspect of the computing courses as you can. I still think you learn just as much from talking to other developers as you do from text books.

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Google turns off sidelined Labs section altogether

Pastey

Sounds Familiar

Putting a lick of corporate paint across it's offerings and dumping those that don't fit. Did they nick that idea of the BBC? Earlier this year they did the same thing.

Admittedly the two corporations are completely different, but is this a trend we're likely to see across over parts of the web?

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Apps overrated in mobile web wars

Pastey

App vs Web

I've been using the mentioned PhoneGap for over a year now and it does gives the best, and possibly the worst of both worlds. It basically instantiates a chromeless browser and loads html/js/css in. It then also has a set of js library apis that allow the code to interact with the hardware. So, in effect you have a native app.

The issues raise about inconsistancy of design I've not come across. Or rather, I've seen them in apps but there's no real reason for them to be there. It's not that difficult in a web app to mimic the user interface of a native app. JQTouch does it *very* well for instance. But I think this stems from the problems we used to have back in the dial up days of the net. You could either program, and your site worked very well but looked like a pile of dung, or you could design and the site looked lovely but took half an hour to load. Since then web developers have had to understand and work with designers, and designers have had to learn how the web works. This will come to app. A lot of apps being built are by single person companies, or people giving it a go for the first, second or third time. Once it settles down the good design and consistency will come back.

Another point raised was that apps clog up resources compared to just visiting a website. This is true. You visit a website and the resources are put into your cache, you download the app and they're saved on your memory card. Lots of apps, lots of graphics, sounds, etc and you soon fill that card up. The app doesn't have to be running to use up resources.

There are occasions to use an app (web or native) over a website though, when you want access to the local hardware such as the camera, file system, accelerometer, etc, or when you want to be able to guarantee you can use the app when there's no signal. Try accessing the web on a phone inside an old museum, it's not going to happen.

It all comes down to what you actually want to achieve. If you're not wanting to access the device's hardware and your not needing it to be always available, then the reasons to build an app from a technical perspective diminish. From a users perspective though, there will always be the presence icon reminding them it's there. There will be occasional updates reminding them it's there (and I know that some companies schedule minor updates when they see usage drop off) and there always seems to be something in a user's mind that says a packaged app is better than a website. Not sure why, but there does.

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O2 boots up boobies blocker

Pastey
Unhappy

no b3ta either

O2 are saying that you can pop into a shop with photo id to prove you're over 18. I'm gonna pop in after work and try and point out that my monthly direct debit they're happy to take, and my details they needed to set up the contract should point out quite clearly that I'm over 18. And having worked building anti-porn filters in the past I'm quite comfortable discussing pr0n access on my mobile, let's see if the staff in their shop are.

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Rescue mission begins for Hitchhiker's Real Guide

Pastey

Not a flame, just a point of view

h2g2 was always different from what Wikipedia is.

If you're familiar with the works of Douglas Adams, it's kinda similar to Wikipedia being the Encyclopedia Galactica, informative but dull. h2g2 was more as it was in the books, less formal more fun.

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Pastey

At the moment...

we don't know much.

We do know that the BBC is definitely disposing of h2g2. They've assured us that doesn't mean they're closing it down. They've also assured us that they'll try and make sure they do the best by the community.

That's about as much as we know at the moment.

They've got some internal meetings lined up of the next couple of weeks to sort things out before we do know anything more and they have promised to keep us informed, which they have been doing as much as they can.

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Facebook figures suggest WinPho 7 user base still small

Pastey
Thumb Down

Maybe it's because

Facebook on WinMo sucks. Big time.

I've got a winmo phone, and Facebook on it is incredibly bad. Whether I try to use the app or just surf up to the website, it really is an abysmal experience. I'm not what some may term a heavy Facebook user, else I might stick with it more. But as it is, I just wait 'til I'm near a desktop or just get out my laptop if the need is really there.

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Star Wars set for 3D rehash

Pastey
FAIL

New generation

of kids to sell merchandise to?

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Apple issues moral regulations apps dev guide

Pastey
WTF?

anything that portrays a "real entity" as an enemy

So no multiplayer games then?

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