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* Posts by Twilight

25 posts • joined 11 Nov 2010

So long, Hotmail: Remaining users migrated to Outlook.com

Twilight

I'm sure Outlook.com has cost them a lot of users

My wife used hotmail for over a decade (maybe going all the way back to '96). MS made some changes earlier in the year that screwed up some of her settings (I think it was around SMTP send so it may have now been fixed) and then the forced change to Outlook.com interface which she thinks is horrendous. The upshot is that there's now one more happy Gmail user.

I'm sure her story is far from unique - I wonder how many hotmail users bailed? Unfortunately, I doubt we'll ever hear the answer.

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Socket to 'em: It's the HomeGrid vs HomePlug powerline prizefight

Twilight

Re: Crud generators.

You do realize how hard it is to run CAT 5/6 in a lot of older buildings, right? That is the huge advantage PLT has over ethernet.

I completely disagree with you on Plasma TVs. They are superior to LCD TVs (and the so-called "LED" TVs) and I will continue buying them until something better comes along (hopefully OLED will show up one of these days and blow everything else away). I have not seen any radio interference from the Plasma (admittedly I also don't listen to FM much or operate a ham). Most microwaves put out far more interference than a Plasma TV.

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Google, Apple, eBay shouldn't pay taxes - people should pay taxes

Twilight

I suggest a compromise

This is mostly talking about US law...

I suggest a compromise. Corporations be allowed to pay lower taxes (say 10% - even lower than the 12.5% Irish rate that many companies are already using via various gimmicks) to help support services they do benefit from but they give up all aspects of person-hood besides being able to be directly sued (the purpose of the original law) - no more political spending (they aren't people so have no right to free speech as an entity unto themselves), etc.

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US Trade Rep criticises tech trade barriers in Oz, NZ

Twilight

Hopefully New Zealand does pass the laws eliminating software patents and requiring IP owners to pay a nominal fee to help cover ISP costs.

Software patents are a blight on innovation (which is odd since that's exactly what patents are supposed to promote). I am a software developer and emphatically agree with eliminating software patents - they serve no useful purpose (the only purpose is to pad the pockets of the big corps that have tons of them).

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Windows 3.1 rebooted: Microsoft's DOS destroyer turns 20

Twilight

Re: MS still the underdog then

Lotus, Wordperfect, etc didn't have trouble moving to WIMP. This was the height of Microsoft's monopoly abuses - Microsoft broke competitors office applications with almost every patch to Windows (so eventually people stopped using non-Microsoft office apps).

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Twilight

Re: I had WfW3.11

Calling the Intel P133 an "early chip" is amusing. My first PC was a 386-DX20 and I'd been using PCs since 8088.

My first PC used SIPP memory modules (normal 72pin except it had actual pins rather than surface connections).

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Murdoch slams White House over SOPA in Twitter row

Twilight

Murdoch doesn't like it? Must be the right thing then

As far as I'm concerned if Murdoch doesn't like something, then it is the absolutely right thing to do. Murdoch (and his corporate empire) are *evil*.

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Feds propose 50-state ban on mobile use while driving

Twilight

Actually, not wearing a seatbelt (or a motorcycle helmet (another brilliantly inconsistent safety measure in the US)) can have a *massive* impact on other people. This is the US - the home of the stupid lawsuit. By not wearing a seatbelt or helmet, the driver/rider is much more likely to sustain a serious injury and sue you (assuming you were at fault) for them being stupid. I have absolutely no problem with not requiring seatbelts or helmets if and only if there is a law passed that says there is no liability to anyone else if you are not wearing them if doing such might have prevented the injury.

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Twilight

so many reasons this is a terrible idea...

I would love to see texting banned but that is harder to enforce than DUI. Some states have banned non-hands-free talking (IL at least) as it is statistically worse than hands-free and it seems to be mostly followed (not sure about enforcement). I don't see any reason for making a distinction between hands-free earpiece and installed-by-manufacturer system - I can't imagine there is any statistical difference in distraction.

Also, there are plenty of other distractions far worse than even texting. You can't ban them all and trying to is just foolish. Although, I'd personally love to see a ban on unruly children in cars. ;)

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Twilight

worst distracted driver seen

The worst I saw was someone talking on the cell phone braced between their ear and shoulder while holding a notepad in one hand and writing in it with the other. I wonder if they ever thought of pulling over off the road?

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Google top brass (and Zuck) hit Google+ privacy button

Twilight

explain...

@nyelvmark, which completely misses the point. It appears that all these big-wigs are setting their profiles private and it was announced recently that private profiles would be deleted. So please explain what's going on (some of us aren't on Google+ yet and can't look at settings to see if you can have a "public" profile that gives no info (and then what's the difference between that and a private profile?)).

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US state bans Netflix, Napster password sharing

Twilight

same old RIAA rhetoric

Even if we assume the RIAA backed study numbers are correct, they completely fail (again) to address what percent of those "pirates" would have actually paid for the content or just done without. Every study that's looked at that in the past has concluded that very very few people would have paid for the content if the pirate material was unavailable (and also that the piracy may actually boost sales because potential buyers are exposed to music they would not have been otherwise).

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FCC demands AT&T prove spectrum scarcity claims

Twilight

mixed feelings

I'm against the AT&T takeover of T-Mobile on principle (they are the only two GSM carriers in the US).

However, I've been an AT&T customer for a long time (Cingular -> AT&T -> Cingular -> AT&T to be exact). I have very few issues with dropped calls but do experience relatively frequent decreases in data bandwidth while traveling (sometimes dropping down to Edge rather than 3G). The T-Mobile acquisition should give AT&T more bandwidth in dense markets and fill in some of the gaps (voice and data) in their network while also giving them a jumpstart on their LTE rollout.

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Facebook absolved for exposing user info to advertisers

Twilight

in favor of corps yet again...

Sigh. What a surprise - the courts side with the big corps again. This sort of case is very hard to bring without a sympathetic judge as it's nearly impossible to state "any real harm". It's easy to specify likely harm but pretty much impossible to give specifics without getting the internal records of the advertisers that Facebook leaked the data to. :(

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Microsoft to Apple: 'Oh, yeah? Well, your font is too small'

Twilight

Windows and Trademark

>>>"Windows" may be a common noun, but they filed for the trademark in the context of Computer Operating Environments (As Amazon did with bookstores).<<<

Except that X Windows existed long before Microsoft Windows and MacOS also predated MS Windows by quite a bit (MacOS had windows but the OS/environment was not referred to as Windows). MS never should have been awarded a trademark on Windows.

Then again, the US Trademark and Patent systems have been a massive joke for decades. Things awarded when either/both of obviousness and prior art tests are blatantly failed. :(

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Steve Jobs unveils 30% subs model for ... everything

Twilight

no diff pricing outside the app?

>>>Apple now *require* publishers to offer an in-app single click option if there is an outside-app version, *and* publishers can't provide links to external locations where the outside-app version is *and* publishers can't offer better prices outside the app.<<<

Wow! Publishers are not allowed to offer better prices outside the app? That's new (it was allowed as far as known last week from what I read). That is a ludicrous requirement - I would expect in-app content to cost 42% more (to cover Apple's 30%) - otherwise, the publisher is going to lose money (and likely withdraw iOS support (bad for users and Apple)).

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Google to Microsoft: You're stealing our search results!

Twilight

SEO is never legit

SEO by definition is gaming the system and cheating to get the page you want to the top of searches.

If you mean you advise clients on how to construct *useful* web pages that get to the top on their own merit without playing keyword games (and similar), good for you. I wouldn't call that SEO.

If, on the other hand, you do any gaming of keywords or content specifically to increase page visibility (especially for searches the page does not directly relate to), you are part of the problem.

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Microsoft files US trade complaint against TiVo

Twilight

software patents? what are they thinking?

I just don't understand how any government could think that software (or business method) patents are reasonable.

I work in IT and, even if not in my fields of expertise, the majority of software patents fail the "obvious" test just from me reading them - I expect that it would be more like 99.99% are obvious if you ask any developer working in the field the patent applies to.

Yet, they routinely get approved in the US (not sure about EU).

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Verizon backpedals on unlimited iPhone data

Twilight

I'm staying with AT&T

I've been an AT&T Wireless customer for a *long* time (Cingular->AT&T->Cingular->AT&T) and have never had issues with them. I very rarely drop calls and have great coverage (and, yes, this is in a metropolitan area). I bought an iPhone 3GS when they were released and have been happy with it (except for the extra charge for tethering which is free everywhere else in the world).

Also, I enjoy traveling so I will not even consider a non-GSM phone/carrier.

Another strike against Verizon is no simultaneous voice/data on the iPhone (which AT&T supports just fine).

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No court order against PlayStation hackers for now

Twilight

Both the cracking and the publishing...

>>>There is arguably *some* difference between someone doing something on hardware they've bought, with the intention of only using what they do to enable their own alternative use of the hardware, and telling other people how to do something if revealing that knowledge enables illegal activity.

That second case is a potentially very murky area, especially if what is being done has some arguable merit (like in this example, reinstating the Linux capability, the presence of which might have motivated some people to become owners).<<<

You have it somewhat backwards. Publishing information and offering services is generally allowed if it has legal uses (cf all P2P). It has to *only* have illegal uses to be illegal.

However, this falls under the DMCA because Sony can claim that the PS3 was crytographically secured digital material (whether it was well-secured or not is immaterial under DMCA). Simply bypassing the code even for personal use violates the DMCA unless it is one of the exemptions issued by the LoC (iPhone jailbreaking is legal but PS3 jailbreaking is not).

Yet another example of why the DMCA needs to be abolished (but never will be because Congress is thoroughly bought and paid for by the big corps).

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Twilight

Unfortunately, it does violate DMCA

Unfortunately, there was a definite violation of the DMCA because, as you said, it is a *terrible* law that completely disallows fair use for pretty much anything digital.

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Bloated US patent holder sues 9 tech companies

Twilight

Intellectual Ventures and software patents

It's possible that many of the patent filers did have working models. I take Intellectual Ventures to be one of those companies that goes around buying up as many patents as possible as cheaply as possible and then suing as many people as possible to make a profit (one variety of patent troll).

I agree with some others, software and business method patents need to go entirely. There has never been a software patent that shouldn't have failed the "obvious" test (just because patent reviewers are low-paid clueless types doesn't mean it's not obvious to many people that work in software).

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FBI brass ask Google, Facebook to expand wiretaps

Twilight

US gov = big corps

It's not really an FBI problem - the US has the best government that can be (and has been) bought. Just look at the laws that get passed (rather than what the politicians say) - the vast majority fall into one of two categories:

1) Benefit some big corp(s) that have their bought congressmen pushing it through.

2) Security theater measures to give the illusion of security (without actually offering any).

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US may disable all in-car mobile phones

Twilight

completely the wrong priority - what I'd expect from US gov

What a ludicrous thing for the Dept of Transportation to focus on. 5500 deaths caused by distracted driving - and how many of those were actually cell-phone specific distracted driving (as opposed to makeup, reading, kids, dogs, etc)?

Drunk Driving killed 11,773 people in 2008 (probably far more - that was the number legally countable). That's about 1/3 of all traffic fatalities (and was about 50% of fatalities on around holidays).

I can understand banning talking on handsets but talking on a headset is less distracting than just about anything else (stereo controls, climate controls, drinking something, eating something, etc, etc). If we follow this logic, it should be illegal to do all of those things - we have the technology to lock controls while moving after all...

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Hotmail always-on crypto breaks Microsoft's own apps

Twilight

doesn't work at all

My wife has a hotmail account that was hijacked (probably from Firesheep) and used to send spam to all her contacts. I changed the password (which did prevent further logins) but when I went to turn on https, I too got the lovely "Your Windows Live ID can't use HTTPS automatically because this feature is not available for your account type". Of course, they don't give *any* helpful information - no info on why it doesn't work, no info on how to correct it, etc. A search of help/support also turns up nothing vaguely useful.

My wife is now seriously looking at switching email to gmail even though she's had her hotmail account for 12+ years.

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