607 posts • joined 26 Oct 2010
France isn't very representative of the entire world. It's also supposed to have had much cheaper electricity than over here, but my checks just now seem to suggest we're roughly level.
For worldwide production of electricity, coal does indeed seem to be at #1 with a healthy lead.
However I found this article very interesting:
Fusion and Hydrogen
Good god guys, you've had a jolly old talk about Hydrogen but that's largely irrelevant.
While good old regular hydrogen will fuse in a nuclear reaction, my farts probably have more energy. All fusion for weapons or power production is focussed on Deuterium - Tritium reactions, which while being hydrogen, are the heavier isotopes of it, so getting it from seawater is a bit of a non starter.
Sure you can get heavy water from regular water and you have to sift it out, but the best way of obtaining tritium is by consuming lithium. I'm pretty sure some of the Oxford JET designs have lithium around the reaction chamber in order to breed tritium from the fusion reaction's by-product of neutron radiation.
Safer than over-running an open air breeding reactor accidentally beyond it's limits. *cough-windscale-cough*
Maybe if they can't use a nuclear fusion reaction they can find a cloaked war bird. The trick is to look for gaseous anomalies.
Oh and as it's been said, you don't need very much mass of fuel for a nuclear reactor. That's why you could run a breeder reactor from a little uranium harvested from the sea for goodness knows how long. It's completely backwards from a regularly fuelled plant. For Nuclear, fuel costs are tiny in comparison to regulatory, safety, construction, staffing and design costs. Completely unlike a coal station where buying f***tonnes of coal every minute are the major cost.
Re: Longer battery life
This is rubbish. The demand for better battery technology has never been higher. More than anything it is being driven (pardon the pun) by applications that absolutely depend on better battery technology, such as electric vehicles. It's not that the manufacturers don't care, it's simply that it takes a LOT of effort to make a small improvement in battery technology. Sinclair wanted an electric car in the 80s, but he was simply too early. There weren't a bunch of stonecutters holding him back!
If and when major breakthroughs occur then it will, one way or another trickle down to mobile phone users. No manufacturer is going to chose to ignore new opportunities so long as they're cost effective.
I don't understand. I mean I really don't. I get my phone out each night to check my alarm and after I've done that I pop it down roughly on my wireless charger, whereby it magnetically locates and charges. I haven't gotten over the novelty of that yet and I've had my Nexus 5 and wireless charger for over a year.
Maybe wireless charging is something you want to look into, until you can put yourself into stasis so you don't have to wait for the international development of energy storage.
I for one would prefer to buy a cheaper phone that lasts all day than a more expensive phone that lasts multiple days. This is true until sleeping every night becomes optional for me.
WiFi Not Detecting Channel 13 AP
Well I just jumped in but my phone is no longer seeing my Channel 13 AP, the channel I used because it's a lot clearer than the other bands. I don't want to switch the AP :(
Re: UK isn't so bad
I've bitched about BT many times before, all with good reason. I don't think what we've got in the UK is the best but it's certainly way better than the paltry offerings available in large areas of the US. It's made me a lot more grateful for what we do have.
Did anyone notice the four weak areas touted for how bad the UK is had two sites deploying FTTC, while one had limited fibre and cable?
If there's one thing BT are it's excruciatingly slow to roll out new tech, but we're quite lucky, because we are getting it, even in areas that are verging on rural. I just hope that the prices for rural-ish FTTC are about the same as elsewhere considering the shedload of public money that went to them.
I pay about £35 (inc line rental) for 40 Mbps Down and near enough 20 Mbps up (suburban location). I'm happy.
USB3 is 10x Faster, 802.11ac does reach multi gigabit, Moon landing real
"Stating 802.11ac is capable of "multi-gigabit" speeds is as pointless as stating USB3 is 10x faster than USB2. Which has been debunked as bullshit many times over with real life tests finding closer to 3x faster."
While I appreciate that the £30 non branded USB 3.0 flash drive you bought off ebay might not perform with 10x the speed of your USB 2.0 stick, it's total nonsense to rubbish an entire connectivity standard due to your poor imagination. USB 3.0 is being used by SSD drives today to achieve transfer rates of 450 MB/s. Just go Google it and update yourself on the topic. I'm surprised at how often people confuse a connectivity standard with other bottlenecks.
Now with 802.11ac I thought I was going to have to explain future options of 8x8 MIMO AP's for business needs like busy conference halls and the like. I thought I was going to have to explain that just because your smartphone can only do 1x1, 228 Mbps realtime throughput (433 Mbps on the PHY link) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsEutRQ2Zyo) on 802.11ac, don't forget the other people on the other spatial channels served by the AP. So I was going to come out with all this well reasoned stuff and point out that the peak of 802.11ac capability is 6.77 Gbps aggregate capacity at the PHY level which should be about 3.48 Gbps real throughput. This meaning that when these products come out that they really will need that faster Ethernet.
I was going to say all that, then I realised that ASUS have brought out the new ASUS RT-AC87U which is capable of real throughput to another RT-AC87U at 1029.8 Mbps real throughput on cnet tests. One consumer product, not implementing 160 MHz channels and only implementing 4 spatial streams out of 8 possible has already got you beat, not by much, but enough to start bottlenecking at the gigabit ethernet.
Would you like to give us any other advice on things that aren't true?
While I loved your analysis of wind turbine electricity generation, I must admit I disagree here.
If I move next to an airport, is it then reasonable of me to complain about the planes? Weren't the flights an implicit part of say.... moving next to an airport? Isn't expansion of that airport an overwhelmingly obvious possibility?
Now I realise that argument doesn't extend to people who lived there before the airport, I have sympathy for them. I think they should be offered a good price for their property and then it be sold on should they take that offer up, sold on to people who are glad to have the housing and don't mind the flights.
In an ideal world we'd make sure airports were built far away from people's homes but in reality that doesn't work, not in the crowded UK.
I just hate to think that we're past our best, not willing to consider that we could do better. That might seem a far cry from our conversation but it's not. If we applied the modern NIMBY attitude of now to 1950s Britain, it's possible that we might not have the motorways we do now. Yet, without those motorways the cost of all our goods and services would be so much higher. Somebody had to dream of something bigger, better and newer and then it had to be done.
My biggest concern about HS2 is that it's just a device for transferring public funds into private hands and that once it's done that the average person wont be able to afford the fare. That does disturb me as I think that's completely unacceptable.
What infrastructure would you go for?
Re: I find this hilarious
I already use a network in the UK that has no 2G. I have a great data experience and phone calls are clearer too. I don't have problems with signal either.
It's not all bad in the UK, but like in any country around the world, there are rural areas where there's poor coverage.
I don't have much sympathy for NIMBY nibbled neighbourhoods like Chipping Norton. Like it says in the article, communities need to decide what they want, mobile coverage or no mobile masts.
Re: I'm curious about this hate against hybrids and Prius in particular.
I think the Prius dislike comes from a few areas. There are those who say that the production of all the hybrid technology with the batteries in particular causes more problems than it solves. There are those that say that a modern, fun to drive diesel engine can produce less carbon emissions over it's life. There are those who point out the previous two points and point to the hypocrisy of it.
For me personally, I don't hold much against them but they don't excite me at all, if you want a really revolutionary car with everything, look at the Tesla stuff. Can't wait for the car they target for everyone.
It's worth noting that other hybrids are achieving a lot better potential environmental credentials (depending on how electricity is generated) simply by letting their users plug them in.
Re: Perhaps one slight fly in the ointment... shared bandwidth?
That's true to a point Andy Watt, but it's never really made my unlimited service unusable. Sure, at peak times 2 years ago, I had problems tethering for streaming video, but even then browsing and streaming music worked quite well.
If you open an all you can eat restaurant, people don't seem to eat until they die, just because they can. Sure, they eat more, but nothing that can't be accommodated. I think unlimited mobile data is a similar thing. Sure, occasionally I gorge myself on data, but more often than not, I have pretty normal usage patterns but without any worries about bill shock. I have no worries about data usage and I wouldn't want to go back to having them.
Re: Normalising homosexuality = normalising sodomy.
I hope you don't use that astounding logic on anything important.
As pointed out earlier on in the discussion by someone else, since homosexuality often doesn't include sodomy the link from homosexuality to sodomy doesn't stand up. One does not mean the other.
Since sodomy is very popular in straight relationships too, the link from sodomy to homosexuality doesn't stand up either.
Re: This post has been deleted by a moderator
Moral majority? Who declares what's moral, you I presume? Do you not feel that you can say that you're straight without being oppressed? Do you not feel that you can practise straight sex without feeling oppressed? Do you still feel oppressed? You poor thing! I feel so sorry for you.
As for a pro perversion world you're talking rubbish. Only the other day me and my girlfriend were talking about ropes and we got the most horrible looks from the checkout lady. There is still much work to be done.
$200 Laptop Comparison - Screen Quality
To me screen quality really matters. I know not everyone feels that way though. Tablets like the iPad and Nexus series have IPS screens with great definition, brightness, contrast, colour and viewing angles. Try getting that in a laptop without spending north of £750, you'll struggle, especially if you want a 15" screen.
New Era of Intrusion
If I was Zuckerberg and wanted to take over the world this is exactly what I'd do to learn people's deepest secrets. I'm not sure if I'm horrified or deeply impressed.
If people let their guard down on there neglecting to consider the machine analysis linked to their real identity...
Forgive me for sounding like a member of the tinfoil hat brigade, but I just find it so hard to believe that they might not do that sort of machine monitored data dredging. I just find it too much to believe that the angle wont be exploited.
It's like they carefully considered what the limitations were on all the worst things about facebook and found a way to find a new low.
Re: Well lets name them....
"just how wrong can one post be?"
I can't comment on super large ad agencies, but I can comment on smaller ad-fuelled businesses. Having actually worked for them in software development.
In a sufficiently large ad agency the person accepting flash files and media will simply use a back end CMS and may have the problem solving technical prowess to fix a paper jam in a printer.
The conversation between the developers and the business management when implementing that CMS would probably have gone along these lines:
Boss Guy: "We need to support flash advertising in the CMS"
*Developer shows uncomfortable face*
Boss Guy: "There a problem there?"
*Developer considers suggesting that flash might very, very, very occasionally carry malicious code, but doesn't want to present such an esoteric risk to the boss and come off sounding like someone who doesn't want to get the work done with a go get'em attitude when everyone else also uses flash.*
Developer: "Well, it wont play nice with apple iThings."
Boss Guy: "Well, I guess we'll just have to encourage people to move to HTML5 ads in the long term."
Ultimately, it's stories of people getting burnt by flash that will change conversations like the one above. Until then, it's very easy to be the person with 20:20 vision in hindsight and more importantly, you have to make a business case for spending time on things and it's very difficult to justify hundreds of man hours of reverse engineering code 'just in case'.
I have no doubt that this sort of malware will indeed change attitudes in time, but for now I think if you did a little work for ad agencies you'd understand why this sort of thing happens.
I would say that 'easily finding' malicious flash code when you don't know what you're looking for would be a bit like 'easily finding' OpenSSL and bash vulnerabilities in 2012. There's a reason why anti virus companies employ very skilled people who had to climb a steep learning curve.
Re: Well lets name them....
The downvotes don't make mark 63 wrong, also thanks to g00se for pointing out the underlying mechanism. How would you detect malware in a flash file a customer submitted to you? Would you attempt a security analysis before sending it on beyond a check with an anti virus? Flash isn't *supposed* to be able to be compromised like that.
Arguably the bad decision was made when flash was used for advertising, but can you imagine arguing with your boss about letting through a flash advert if you're an advertising company technical advisor? The notion of decompiling and reverse engineering every flash file to check it for safety is unworkable.
I dare say this sort of exploitation was inevitable as flash for advertising became the complacently accepted norm. I started using flashblock myself after one too many websites started playing movies and sound automatically (rude bastards).
It's easy to be reactionary and blame ad agencies, but the problem really lies with..... well.... using software. Proprietary or open source, there isn't a type of software that's immune from vulnerabilities.
My hat is off to them. I am almost tempted to get me some copper sulphate and start electro plating!! :P
So MFA maglev, that really going to be possible then? Can we expect a working production train before either HS2 or the perfection of Nuclear Fusion?
I'm not cynical really, I love my tablet, my phone and my computer they struggled to imagine in 1985.
Re: Not a one horse race
You've side stepped the issue that Mega is a paid for service after 50Gb and a certain amount of monthly transfer.
Sure you could trust no one, like in the X-Files, but:
1) So you wont be using cloud storage at all then?
2) If Mega does get caught betraying it's users, the business and the political capital that Kim Dotcom is working to build all goes down the toilet, along with the subscription users concerned about privacy too.
Fundamentally the percentage of us who have the skills *and* time to review code to ensure security is nominally 0%.
So what would you do? I presume you think Edward Snowden's idea of encouraging all developers to use encryption is pointless because we can't trust anyone.
Not a one horse race
Other services already offer 50 Gb for free and even include client end encryption so there's less snooping. Google is convenient, but not the best.
I'd take Mega's 50 Gb indefinitely over Google's unlimited for a bit.
I Do Care
I get excited about the prospect of some more innovation, some interesting new features and maybe a few surprises. Granted, it seems like there are less and less party tricks each year, but it's still entertaining.
The big question is though, will they bend? :P
Net Neutrality Debate is a Symptom
The whole Net Neutrality Debate is a symptom of a much bigger problem. Capitalism has always required regulation and competition. Regulation stops companies from harming customers, competition keeps companies motivated to offer the customer a good deal.
It appears to me from what I've taken in over the debate that effective monopolies in ISPs are rife in certain areas, covering a very substantial number of people. Competition has been eliminated in some areas and no regulators seem to be up in arms. Of course when you find out the head of the FCC is a former lobbyist for the cable companies it's not a long leap to imagine that the regulator is corrupted.
One of the safeguards appears to be completely gone, that being competition. Now the other safeguard, regulation appears to be under attack.
Re: Is that a phablet in your pocket?
I've carried around a Nexus 5 for almost a year that's only 20.2mm shorter and that's had a few knocks and it's fine. 137.9mm tall instead of 158.1mm (iPhone 6 plus).
Not Just 4K, but HDR Video
I've been waiting for HDR video for a while, to hear more about it going with 4K is very exciting. I think 10,000 nits HDR will have a much larger wow factor when people see it than the 4K resolution. Good to see things coming along.
As a note, when I talk of HDR I'm not talking about the stuff you see in tone compressed photos, but displays that are capable of showing a much larger colour gamut. It would make things like sunsets and fireworks look far more realistic on display screens.
While it's true I wouldn't have clicked the link if I'd have realised the core speed of the drive is pretty much similar to what I already have. I don't need The Register to point out that (not the device itself) RAM is fast. Cheers guys.
Seems a bit like crying wolf to me. Please resist the urge to do this in the future. I like The Register.
Alternatively, it's online retail with it's much lower costs that has forced high street retailers into a race to the bottom on customer service. Greedy councils and expensive town centre locations are bad enough, but giving customers money back when mistakes happen and employing helpful and knowledgeable people (and paying them enough to keep them) is a lot more expensive than box shifting at a warehouse where anyone thinking of returning something has to be willing to wait on a phone for 15 minutes and pay money to post the item back.
Crap > Distinctive Programming
"BBC produces quality TV that the market can't [comrade]."
Having watched some PBS stuff on Netflix it seems clear to me that it's unfortunately true that the BBC does excel in certain areas. The PBS stuff was good, don't get me wrong, but no one on the PBS documentary about Nikola Tesla tried to explain that shooting power wirelessly through the sky would be an RF nightmare, let alone the possible damage caused by the energy leaking from the system. I'm sure the 'beeb' would have.
But then, it also produces shows that seem to just be re-jigged variations of commercial formats. Why are we all being forced to pay for those?
Seems to me like the BBC is trying to give us just what the market does and then some extra good bits on top. Though when it comes to rationalising this crazy payment system that goes against the core belief of our nation of operating a free market economy, only the extra good bits on top get used to defend the BBC.
I'm sick of being treated like an idiot by these people.
As if to prove my point, I find myself reaching for a BBC clip to prove my point! (Have I Got News For You clip)
Re: How About
I did sort of get what you said, but I did refer many times to my WTF stock response. I found DAS COW really tipped me over the edge. :P
All I ask is that you flesh it out perhaps a wee bit more for those of us not specialising in back end mobile telephony. :)
Not going to be Sycophantic
OK, I'm not going to be sycophantic. I thought that the visuals were pretty poor, but just listening to the audio, it was kind of interesting.
I know one shouldn't take oneself too seriously, but if you make yourself too much of a joke, then no one will take you seriously at all.
Don't be disheartened though, keep the innovation coming. Get that humour / real news balance right and you could end up with gold.
Re: I hope for Apple it is a fake
When the iPhone 4 came out I did feel that it was a beautiful thing. I never bought an iPhone, I felt that the screen was too small. I think the screen size is a large improvement, it's what the market wants, but I can't help thinking that the new iPhone looks like a bastard lovechild of Apple and HTC. To me it's lost it's sexiness in design.
When Apple, the people who really got this party started, when they start imitating their cheaper competitors, what happens then?
This one's going to be an interesting one to watch.
Best reason to buy Apple as far as I see is that they have much more stringent app store 'curation'.
Best reason to buy Android is the exceptional bang for buck on offer and the huge variety of choices.
Best reason to buy Windows Phone is.... erm.... hmmm. To 'think different'? :P
Re: Get your own toys
Well at least in theory, governments are supposed to represent their people. Are you saying that the majority of users of the internet (i.e. not US citizens) don't deserve a say in how they use it?
I sympathise that governments often do a crap job of meddling, but what else are you suggesting, anarchy?
The U.S. has done a wonderful job of creating the internet. CERN (Centre for European Nuclear Research) has done a wonderful job of creating the world wide web.
It's time to grow up and share your toys boys.
Re: So many things to consider.
Good point about refuting.
Pilots have lots and lots of training. They don't have other aircraft jumping out in front of them or traffic lights turning red suddenly as they fly along.
Neither do they have the potential for a facebook app to interface with their HUDs.
Whether it's an improvement or not really depends on what software gets used. If we look past the novelty of it being a HUD, what we're really looking at is buying another smartphone to pair to your smartphone that has the sole job of doing all the things your smartphone could do, but doing them in a way better thought out for driving.
My google voice recognition works well in quiet environments with short requests, but becomes unreliable either with too much background noise (like a motorway) or if I say too much, so if I try and write a text with it. It's for this reason I really don't see Navdy working like you'd hope it would for text messages.
Rolling Shutter FTW
Using the rolling shutter from a regular DSLR at 60fps was both inspired and amazing, very impressive result.
Re: Is it patented?
I don't think so, but I expect it's already covered by Apple's patent for 'magical effects produced from a shiny metal something'.
Re: Stop press
"To be fair, being either public or private seems to be absolutely no barrier to being utterly clueless"
Fixed that for you :P
Smartphone NFC rocks, but not so much for payments.
I've used a phone to pay by NFC and I've used a debit card to pay by NFC. Honestly, I'd much rather take out my cheap, easily cancelled, easily replaced debit card out my wallet than start tapping my smartphone against payment terminals.
That said, I do enjoy sharing webpages, contacts and the like just by touching my phone against some of my friends phones. It's an exceptionally easy way of sharing data.
I like smartphone NFC, but I don't like it for payments, having actually tried both my phone and my debit card in that role.
Re: A sternly worded letter?
Yeah, I was kind of thinking the same thing.
"Naughty Verizon! Now say sorry and promise you wont do anything like this again."
Re: Great attempt at explaining the unexplainable
I can't say it better than the great man Douglas Adams:
“There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.
There is another theory which states that this has already happened.”
Re: Whenever toast be a croissant and one be loving the COFFEE.*
Ergo, vis à vis, concordantly, something about the Matrix.
Re: Unaffected by new laws
Don't get me wrong, most motorists commit speeding offences so they're no angels, but at least most motorists don't drive around at night with their headlights off or drive consistently on the wrong side of the road for no good reason. I even saw some police cycling without proper lighting recently!!
When I was cycling I wasn't perfect but I did bother to put lights on my bike front and rear.
I realise I'm sounding like a cliché.
Re: Confession time
I really hope you're trolling there Natalie Gritpants.
I've always felt that using the motorway properly, keeping to the left and using all other lanes as overtaking lanes, genuinely makes for a more interesting drive. If I were to keep in one lane constantly and was not required to pay a lot of attention to other traffic I think I'd find motorway driving quite dull and tedious, as it happens there's always plenty to overtake and plenty of bad habbits, absent indicating and dick manoeuvres to bitch about. I don't have dull motorway journeys.
Re: Storage cost
Around 12 years ago I had a dream of a crazy RAID setup at home that would give me 2TB of storage. I'm going loosely off memory here, but I think it would have been around 8-10 250 Gb drives.
The advantage it offered me was to allow me to erm... record many more TV shows from my TV Capture card.
I thought about the prospect of spending around £1,500 on the exciting and exotic setup before realising that actually, I really didn't need that much data storage and it was a really expensive way of saving TV shows. I also reasoned that it wouldn't be all that long before that sort of capacity was available in one drive.
I'm glad I spent my money in more useful ways now.
Re: Verizon can STFU & FOAD, Kthxbai.
WOW! All of a sudden Bastard Telecom, I mean British Telecom, I mean BT, possibly BT Wholesale, maybe BT Openreach...
They don't look quite so bad after all.
Re: Sorry about this..
I think AC's understandable confusion is around why anyone, guilty or innocent would want to agree to something like that and perhaps a concern that the police might use some sort of coercion to get people to agree.
"Ok Mr Criminal, do you mind if we save your photos?"
"Yes, I do mind, don't do it please."
"Oh come on! Go on..."
Personally if someone's walking round with the name of Mr Criminal I think they're asking for trouble.
This whole scenario makes me think of another one Eddie Izzard raised.
"Cake or death?"
You're right about witness testimony, but human eyes are very impressive optically. It's taken a very long time to develop display and recording technologies that are as good as they are and we're still some way away from fooling a TV viewer into the notion that the images on their TV look absolutely real.
I'll agree with you on your other points though.
I was honestly thought there was going to be something about Mega from the title. I know mega.co.nz runs on trust in their code, but considering the founder got illegally raided by the US it would seem he has motive to produce good code.
I like the idea of my data in the cloud not being completely transparent to the companies running the cloud service.
I suppose if I wanted to attack Mega I'd work on getting the private key in the SSL and subverting the software sent to a client with a man in the middle attack.
If I can think my way through a possible attack on the most secure public service I know, it really doesn't say much for the integrity of cloud infrastructure.
Re: Top Tip
Mobile networks : Make 1G work first.
It's not a launchpad, it's an impetus applicator... interesting. :)
Re: Change of address
"Perhaps using IE instead of Firefox would help but who would want that?"
Hey, did you know they've released newer versions since IE 8? Have you actually tried them, or is that sort of statement like a reflex reaction?
I use IE10 all the time to watch 4oD when it fails to work properly on Chrome because of some weird issue with Chrome's built in flash. I find it a fast and competent web browser with excellent rendering speed. I'd switch to IE11 but I'm a bit annoyed at Microsoft for having removed simulation of old browsers from IE's development tools.
That's right guys, web developers don't all hate IE any more.
It's a brave new world.
Funny Story But...
It is a funny story, but it's an amusing side anecdote. Marketing only works when the product does too. They may well have caught up, but.... perhaps too late.
It's like my Nan quotes from Shakespeare:
"And enterprises of great pitch and moment, With this regard their Currents turn awry, And lose the name of Action."
It's very unusual she quotes from Shakespeare, I guess the quote must have particular resonance for her.
Re: [Why do I ever want 4G - can someone remind me?]
Nifty did a great job, but I'll put my twopence in.
4G is a higher capacity shared medium than 3G. Whichever way you cut it, that's more reliable, harder to congest and faster. What's not to love about that?
4G has been designed for much lower latencies for a snappier, faster experience even if you only had the same bandwidth as with 3G. Why would anyone not want a lower ping? I love quick response times.
I can't wait for 3's 4G rollout.