* Posts by werdsmith

586 posts • joined 16 Feb 2011

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HP slaps dress code on R&D geeks: Bin that T-shirt, put on this tie

werdsmith
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Re: " ... dressing well improves the holistic ambiance of a brain struggling with ... coding"

If you've got a massive belly with a hectare of belt over-hang, then don't wear a shirt and tie FFS. Don't wear a white shirt tucked into tightly belted dress trousers. Don't wear a buttoned up shirt collar so your flabby chin and jowls make you look as if your head is holding in a massive pressure and about to explode. You look like you are being squeezed out of a tube. Yep, you; the SAN / Storage sales people who visited last week. Join a gym, get a bike, do some swimming and stay out of Greggs, really, it will save your life.

Seriously, the shirt and tie look really does only work for a standard sort of shape of person.

Having said that, at the very least a gentleman should wear a tailed jacket, a top hat, white spats and carry a silver-topped cane unless you are writing code, then you may choose emo or goth.

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Help! Our Virgin Media TiVo boxes are stuck in a loop! Help! Our Virgin..

werdsmith
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Re: SOP for VM

"I quickly re-routed one of my FreeSat feeds into her home"

Curious as to how you do that.

I think it's a euphemism.

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werdsmith
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Re: London time??

Please do. Then maybe the rest of us can have the government we'd like, for a change.

London mostly returned Labour MPs, they didn't get the government that most of them wanted.

It was the rest of the country that put the Torys in.

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All wristjobs are as insecure as $#@%, reveals unsurprising research

werdsmith
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I am bothered. I'm just careful where I leave important stuff. Smartwatch info is trivial only.

Internal locus of control.

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werdsmith
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They can hack my pebble if they wish, I am quite happy to expose everything it does publically as most of the stuff you can see on it is already on twitter in a more complete form. Or they could just look at twitter.

I don't have many snowdenesque messages for them to be interested in.

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Now car hackers can bust in through your motor's DAB RADIO

werdsmith
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Re: Glad to be in the slow lane.

My old car doesn't have any of this connected stuff, but if someone wants to cause damage to it then it's easy enough. Vulnerabilities range from concrete blocks lobbed off bridges to nails in tyres.

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Neat but narky at times: Pebble Time colour e-paper watch

werdsmith
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Re: Water resistance

"A sports goggle version of Google Glass with an HD cam would kill off GoPro's market and also ensure you didn't get lost on your bike ride or Nordic ski trek..."

Seriously? You think Go-Pros are only used attached to people's heads?

And the Smartwatch screens are not too small to be useful.

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werdsmith
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And by coincidence, Pebble have released today a new firmware update that allows backlight timing and font size control.

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werdsmith
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Thanks for the heads up on that one. Lovely watch, but what a bloody annoying website.

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werdsmith
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I had original Pebble which was great. I found checking notifications very useful I wasn't so keen on the watch styling, but it did an effective job.

I got the Pebble Time through Kickstarter early bird, so it was £109, not £179.

The display is poor in some indoor conditions, but the best colour smartwatch display in sunlight, only bettered by the original Pebble mono display.

All I need is to read notifications, for a number of reasons it's better in my circumstances than getting the phone out. So, I would love to remove the silly Looney Tunes animations, enlarge the font again. I don't need the Timeline thing, and I don't need colour. Basically the Pebble 1 was better for me, but I wear the Time now because it is a much better aesthetic design. If I could have Pebble 1 inside this housing then I would.

There are many things that other people do that I don't see the point of. Not a problem, it's not all about me.

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Beaten blokes HATE the women who frag them in online games

werdsmith
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Re: Going to beat your downvotes

What surprises me about this is the revelation that there are female gamers.

Not being a gaming fan myself, I've never heard women, at work or socially or anywhere, discuss their latest gaming exploits.

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werdsmith
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Re: On my favourite PvP

I have no idea what you mean.

But well done anyway.

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Keep your stupid drones away from piloted aircraft, rages CAA

werdsmith
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Re: Have they still not.....

Yeah, just ban everything that is abused by a small minority,.regardless of the fact that the primary purpose of these things is to obtain some great photography and viewpoints otherwise not available.

Just ban them, ban cars, ban motorbikes, ban alcohol, ban chainsaws, ban football crowds, ban dogs ban everything.

Just ban it. Ban ban ban. Make more laws, remove privilege. Oppress the masses, keep 'em down under the heel.

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BREAKING NEWS: Apple makes money

werdsmith
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Not many iPads are bought on network contracts. Many iPhones are so more frequent upgrades offered.

But yes, looks like iPads 2 is in line to get iOS 9 so it will keep on going for another year at least.

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Dead device walking: Apple iPod Touch 6th generation

werdsmith
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Re: Cheapest entry level to iOS

iPod touche is a much tougher battery replacement than a phone. The iPhone is easy, uses screws, takes less than 5 minutes and about £20. The iPod touché needs a heat gun to unstick glue.

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werdsmith
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Re: Cheapest entry level to iOS

Fairly decent iPhone 5 are available for less than £150 used, the 5S just a little bit more.

Used is always the cheapest way. Of course used iPod touch are even cheaper. I've got 3 in a drawer that used to belong to the kids, they've got a 10 minute battery life now but something is stopping me from binning them.

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Google dumps ISP email support. Virgin Media takes ball, stomps home

werdsmith
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Re: Just do broadband properly

20Mb should make for a reasonable VPN, would easily handle a citrix or RDP client or two.

But I don't think Virgin cable home broadband claim to be a business service. The contractors in the office here usually pay for a business broadband connection and another ADSL for backup.

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Apple Watch is such a flop it's the world's top-selling wearable

werdsmith
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Re: 1st Pebble mention

Practical no nonsense notification watch. Better display than Apple in sunlight and more than fit for purpose in other conditions. A fraction of the price. More said.

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werdsmith
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There is something about smartwatches that compel people to post on web discussions and declare how they don't see the point of them. It's like it's important for the world to know that they don't care for them.

I don't care for marzipan, cheap lager, golf, tattoos, skinny jeans, instant coffee, poolside holidays, nightclubs or felching. But I understand that some people do enjoy those things.

Does it make me feel any different having declared my preferences on El Reg?

No.

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Marshall wants to turn your phone UP TO ELEVEN

werdsmith
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Re: Product Placement

I dunno about clever move. Marshall's merchandising marketers have gone nuts with headphones, phones, beer coolers and whatever next bearing the Marshall logo. I can see 50 years of brand cachet earned by Jim just being leaked away to crass brand abuse.

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werdsmith
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Re: Especially as the amp's main benefit to humans is distortion

@king jack

A guitar amp that doesn't distort will not necessarily sound shite. It depends on what tone you are looking for and there is a solid place in music for what we call clean tones. Fortunes have been paid for boutique amps to get loads of headroom.

But indeed, the reputation of a Marshall is the overdriven valve tone we associate with rock .

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Did speeding American manhole cover beat Sputnik into space? Top boffin speaks to El Reg

werdsmith
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Re: Somewhere out there ...

I'm now imagining some poor Turkey vulture that happened to be circling over the detonation site when it blew....

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werdsmith
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Escape velocity is the thing, presumably the assumption is that the thing could have been still shifting at a good lick when it left the atmosphere and entered an orbit with a parabolic trajectory if any part of it has survived the heating on the way up (which would have been combined with the momentary effect of the blast). It would have been possible to calculate is the mass of that plug could hold that much energy without disintegrating.

First to Sub-orbital space was probably Werner with his V2.

But whatever, if there was nuclear blast energy being hosed vertically out of the end of a tube then we need video. This just has to be seen. Anyone know of any links I would be very interested.

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Nokia will indeed be back 'making' phones – and it's far from a foolish move

werdsmith
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Re: Really?

Not nothing, just little. I think there was a period until 2016 where Nokia were prevented from making their own branded handsets.

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werdsmith
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Re: No surprise there....

If it's Nokia and Jolla then it will give me hope.

The last thing I would be interested in is yet another Android faff-phone.

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Android Wear 5.1: A more enduring wristjob for your pleasure

werdsmith
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, if I'm in another room I don't always hear notifications or it ring. I would be well outside Bluetooth range

Very large house then, or some thick stone walls. I've tested the Bluetooth range of a pebble (ewhich uses both BT and BTLE) beyond 30 metres. The WiFi function is more useful in an office or industry environment.

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werdsmith
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Re: Has the wearables market matured already?

I think the word "wanker" would better apply to someone who was so self-centric that they believe that something they don't have a need for must be for wankers.

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werdsmith
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Re: Has the wearables market matured already?

There are so many things that you can buy, but not everybody wants.

But smartwatches seem to compel people to post on the internet statements about how they don't see the point of it. What's special about smartwatches that many people feel the need to declare their disinterest?

I don't feel compelled to tell people that I don't think I'll ever need a nose ring. Or one of those little hoop things that stretch your earlobe. Or Vibram running shoes.....

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I cannae dae it, cap'n! Why I had to quit the madness of frontline IT

werdsmith
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Re: I also agree, but...

The problem with putting in an inflated budget, is that people know and expect that your budget is inflated, which is why they try and cut it down. It's a silly charade, rather like negotiating on a price for a car you are selling. You want £5000 for it, so you price it as £5500. Buyer knows you want £5000 for it so they bid you at £4500. You go through a ridiculous ritual exchange of numbers and end up at the £5000. Ridiculous. Just cut the BS.

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werdsmith
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Re: I also agree, but...

I join the list of agreers, but having fell into this industry as one of the Sinclair generation (there was nothing else that was going to happen for me, considering the economic situation at that time), I am vocationally a square peg but I've made the best of it.

I've done my time as one of the blind ambitious and discovered I really didn't like the dangling Damocletic blade and the best skill I ever learned to survive in this industry is how to find a quiet corner from which I can focus on doing my best work. I don't stick my neck out any more, I just turn out good stuff.

I dream of the day that I step off the carousel and fill my life with music and travel, I just hope I'm not too old and still have my health when that day comes.

Working on it.

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China wants to build a 200km-long undersea tunnel to America

werdsmith
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Travelling time is often dead time, so I while in transit the time can be filled with an activity that you might otherwise be doing then you have the optimum time save.

For instance, if I am going to spend 8 hours of my day in an office working, then ideally my desk and working environment could be moving. I would go into work in the morning at one place, step out in the afternoon in another.

It's the idea of the sleeper train, instead of sleeping all night and then spend several more hours travelling in the morning, you sleep all night and awake at your destination. Effectively traveling without it costing you time.

I suppose it can also be called First Class long haul and I can't afford it. Sorry, off topic, but two day travel time made me think about the time wasted sitting bored in an economy seat.

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Apple Watch sales in death dive after mega launch, claims study

werdsmith
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Re: They have their uses

The rest of us buy a Bluetooth handsfree headset for a tiny fraction of the price.

But you have to take the Bluetooth handset out of your ear so that you can read the message.

I wouldn't buy an iWatch, but it's not really interchangeable, functionally, with a Bluetooth headset.

Even with an app to read the message out as audio, a watch can just be glanced at. They do actually work well for some people.

It impresses me that people believe that because they don't personally find one useful, then their little world must apply to everyone universally and they assert that the smartwatch is pointless. They must have a might high opinion of themselves.

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werdsmith
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Re: Have you ever played supermarket game 'LOOOOOK I got an iPhone' at the checkout ?

I think they are probably bored queuing and get their phones out to pass the time.

I notice people doing this at checkouts and other places. It's not just iPhones that people use.

There is no real show-off effect with iPhones since about 2011 because they are ubiquitous, used by anyone, kids etc.

So I think the game you are actually playing at checkout is probably sanctimony.

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werdsmith
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Re: Not scientific, but …

Little Pebble who got going on Kickstarter have managed to shift over a million of their version 1 watches. The did 100,000 of the new Time version on Kickstarter and will be supplying pre-orders next. They sell watches steadily and without expensive marketing and TV campaigns, and it's working for them because their product simply addresses the practical stuff. It's not a trick watch that does stunts, it has good battery life, sunlight readability and waterproofing. It can't send silly doodles to other pebbles, but the appeal of doing that is fairly short lived. Unless it's a cock picture sent to a colleague addressing a meeting, then it's hilarious and the tech equivalent of kids drawing cocks on the roller blackboard and rolling it out of sight before teacher turned up to start the lesson.

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Apple: Factory minions, need another 90 million iPhones over here, stat

werdsmith
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I let some other SAP pay the big money.

Buy them 2 years behind, £150 or less, cheap PAYG SIM and they do more than I need.

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Smartphones are ludicrously under-used, so steal their brains

werdsmith
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Re: Love the gadgets but...

I don't know why a washing machine would need a cradle to drop the phone into. It should just talk Bluetooth to the phone, then the phone could multi-task across several appliances.

The idea of a smartphone power being more fully utilised has been explored already, notably Motorola with the lapdock. Effectively a laptop housing and screen without a computer inside until you plug in the phone. It didn't really catch on, but modern phones could do 90% of PC tasks, so it would be worth revisiting with a decent handset.

On the question of phones being under-utilised because people just post to facebook, take photos and send messages on them. This is absolutely right. But some those people are still choosing phones based on Top-Trumps hardware specifications and will dismiss phones that don't have the fastest clock speed and most processor cores. Truly much cheaper phones would be enough and the money they save they could spend on having a life.

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Ford's 400,000-car recall could be the tip of an auto security iceberg

werdsmith
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I think the computerised engine starting we have now is to do with stop/start modes on efficient engines, so that it can stop at traffic lights etc and start the instant you press the throttle pedal.

I think when the engine stops it has the pistons in a precise position to help the restart.

We have enough to moan about with cars that need bumpers removing to change lights.

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werdsmith
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About 6 years ago I had a thermostat housing changed for an updated part.

After this the engine management alert light came on after the car warmed up.

It took 3 visits back to the main dealer and them to get on to the manufacturer support before they realised that they needed to update the software so the tolerances matched the updated part.

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Why the BBC is stuffing free Micro:bit computers into schoolkids' satchels

werdsmith
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Re: BEEB Not Broadcasting

No they are not hardware developers. They are partnered with ARM and others for that.

They are not manufacturers/suppliers either, that's why Element14 are involved.

There are other partners too.

BBC are supplying the name, communication and media vehicle. I doubt they are haemorrhaging much cash, certainly not from license fees.

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werdsmith
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Re: The Pi will eat it for breakfast.

The Pi thing is happening sporadically in little islands but I can't find many kids that are interested in them and no school around here is doing anything with Pis.

And there is an arrogance building around the Raapberry Pi world. Which is a real shame because it has properly accelerated the maker movement. Just not in schools.

Fingers crossed for the new attempt.

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werdsmith
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Re: Any bets whether supplies will fall short of promises?

The BBC A was £299, the B was £399. So, to be equivalent today this thing would need to cost over a grand. Nearer £1500 for the B.

It's no wonder we were never allowed anywhere near the precious things.

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werdsmith
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Re: Buy?

So once you have paid for it the first time via your TV tax, you can pay for it again.

Twitter has people screaming about the license fee money.

The partners, ARM, Element 14 and some others are funding the manufacturing.

So don't panic about Public Service Broadcast funding.

One hysterical on twitter is even complaining that the BBC are giving away devices that can be used as switches to trigger bombs.

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werdsmith
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Re: Year 7 = 11 years old

one of the early ideas mooted for the prototype was as a wearable

Oh you can still get the early idea that was mooted. It's being funded by Kickstarter and it's called "CodeBug".

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werdsmith
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Re: Buy?

Although supplies will initially be limited to the schoolchildren qualifying for a free Micro Bit in late October, the BBC has confirmed that the computers will go on sale to others in the UK and overseas before the end of the year.

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werdsmith
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Re: Year 7 = 11 years old

11 years old is well past the "swallowing batteries" stage of development.

But the Siblings might not be. This is the correct BBC quote omitted from the article:

"The initial prototype utilised a smaller battery, however in reviewing the design and examining the health and safety implications of using small batteries for a young audience, where siblings may be able to access the device, the partnership took the decision to re-engineer this element."

But a CR2032 isn't going to last 5 minutes anyway, hence replacing it with a double AAA pack is a good thing.

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Jolla cuts hardware biz loose to concentrate on Sailfish licensing

werdsmith
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Re: "NeXT failed"

I think they meant NeXT inc., not NeXTSTEP.

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werdsmith
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Re: totally agree

It's pretty disappointing that we are left with only a dilemma choice, both iOS and Android are unsatisfactory for me in their own ways, I end up choosing the least irritating (to me) option.

I would really thank some new players to come in and offer a true alternative to Apple.

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werdsmith
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Re: Which?

"yet-to-be-announced company" or "yet-to-exist .. company"? There's a difference.

The article says "new" company.

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Google yanks fake Android battery monitor

werdsmith
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recall a furore a year or two back with people making indignant posts on social media because of all the invasive permissions that the iOS Facebook Messenger app was asking for. People were declaring it evil, stating that they were uninstalling it immediately and advising everybody to do the same.

Two weeks after that cacophony died down, FB Messenger was number 1 on the iOS download list as those people that had deleted it were reinstalling it.

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Oi, idiot fanbois. DON'T buy this gun-shaped iPhone case, mmkay?

werdsmith
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Re: Disappointment

Is "fanboy" the most hackneyed word on the web by now? I'm pretty bored with it.

If you look on the Chinese website, these gun cases are available for phones other than those made by Apple.

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