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* Posts by DougS

2150 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

Are you broke? Good with electronics? Build a better AC/DC box, get back in black with $1m

DougS
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Re: 240v 60Hz...

Pretty sure that most of the world can handle 240v, even if they're nominally 220-230 (some places are 250, I think Japan?) As for the 60 Hz, if someone can design this for 60 Hz and win the million bucks, it would be a simple change to make it capable of 50 Hz for the rest of the world.

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iPad is an iFAD: Now we know why Apple went running to IBM

DougS
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Re: Ipad only a content consumption device

Your wife wrote a book on an iPad? I sure hope she used a keyboard cover, if not was it titled "how to use the wrong tool for any job?" :D

Tablets in general are not intended for content creation, that includes Surface. Yes you can use a keyboard on Surface and have it act mostly like a laptop, but in that case, why not get a laptop? Keyboard covers have been available for iPad and Android tablets since well before the Surface came out, but only a fraction of people buy them (similar to how only a fraction of all tablet sales are Surface) That's because few people buy a tablet intending to create content, John Robson's wife is the exception rather than the rule.

Most people are content consumers, not creators, and for that a tablet is a better solution than a PC for many.

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DougS
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Re: Not much to go wrong with a tablet

Dream on. Apple's biggest competitor for iPad sales now and in 2018 will be iPads they sold in previous years that still work fine. Their next biggest competitor will be disposable sub $100 Android tablets that people will feel they don't need to take as much care of or worry as much if lost/stolen as a $500 iPad. Surface tablets are and will remain a distant third.

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DougS
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Re: the App Store paid out $20bn in revenues to app developers

What are you on about? You can reload apps and music you bought from Apple if you lose your device, buy a new one, temporarily deleted it to make room or whatever. I suppose you can come up with a few examples where something changed and Apple is no longer allowed to distribute it but that's the exception, not the rule (and would equally affect Google Play)

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Faced with stiff competition, Facebook just can't satisfy – report

DougS
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People hate it but they have no choice

Sort of like using Windows.

There's really no competition in social networking. Twitter, Linkedin, Tumblr, Pinterest and so on are all different enough from Facebook they aren't really replacements. The only direct competition is Google+, but that's a bad joke that apparently Linus Torvalds is the only regular user of.

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Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off

DougS
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Its because of Qualcomm

They're just totally dominating this business. They're not quite the Intel of the baseband chipset world, but they aren't far off.

The more interesting question is what will become of their engineers. Rumor had it Apple was hiring some of these guys. It would seem odd for Apple to design its own baseband, but I guess considering they hired a bunch of GPU guys a couple years ago and will probably include their own GPU design in this fall's or next fall's iPhone, maybe they want to eventually control the design of everything inside the iPhone.

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18,000 Apple employees could get bite of profits with class-action lawsuit

DougS
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Re: Offshore cash, fines, and taxes?

They could pay fines/costs from non-US governments with those funds, but if they used them for US fines the money must be repatriated first and full US taxes paid (less whatever taxes have already been paid on it in other countries)

So if Apple or Google get some bigass fine from the EU they'll be able to use money that has not been fully taxed in the US to pay for it, but if it is in the US they must repatriate first.

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Apple gets patent for WRIST-PUTER: iTime for a smartwatch

DougS
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Re: iTime

Oh I know, the point of the article was yet another smartwatch related patent from Apple, which like all the others sheds no light on what the capabilities of the device they may eventually release will be.

How is this patent any more interesting than the other half dozen or so that have been written about by everyone all over the internet for the past several years?

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DougS
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iTime

Really, an article that suggests a name based on something scribbled in a patent application?

I think we can pretty sure it won't be called that, since telling time would be about 100th on the list of things people would buy one for.

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Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS - on PCs, slabs and mobes

DougS
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Easier said than done

Developing the interface for an app that will work properly on a 4.5" touch screen and a laptop screen using a mouse doesn't sound too simple. You pretty much need to code two GUIs for it, or use the smartphone GUI on the laptop and waste most of the extra real estate.

Look at Facebook, for instance. There's a reason they don't try to cram the web page into the app, or use the GUI from the app on the web page. If you have two separate interfaces, it is akin to having two different programs that use the same API library.

What's the incentive for developers to go through the extra work to target Modern and produce a full sized GUI and a touchscreen GUI, versus simply producing a Win32 application that they already know how to build? All that extra work to build the Modern app with two GUIs only adds 1% to their potential install base - probably that extra work would be better spent either creating a iOS app for that IBM/Apple alliance, or an Android app to access the bulk of the mobile market!

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WTF is ... Virtual Customer Premises Equipment?

DougS
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Re: Makes sense to me

What the hell? Why should everyone be required to learn how a router works? You don't know every subject in the world to an equivalent level to that, why are computers special? Because you already know them and think everyone else should too?

There are probably people who feel the same way about cooking, for instance, but maybe you're one of those who can't do anything beyond boiling a pot of water. Or maybe you don't know much about your country's political structure, or home maintenance, or growing food, how to load/use a weapon to hunt, how to create art, and so on. I'll bet you scoff at at least some of those as being important, but there are people who would argue that each of them are more important than knowing how a router works.

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ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US

DougS
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Re: One rule for the US of A and one for everyone else

All this ruling says is that you if you don't have a US presence, you can't make a complaint through the US ITC (the body that would allow banning imports or infringing) This doesn't stop them from suing in US federal court, or the courts of any other countries that Seagate and LSI operate in.

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So whither Microsoft? If Nadella knows, he's keeping it well hidden

DougS
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@Ashton Black

Microsoft isn't Apple, and never will be. Microsoft has never been at the forefront of a technology trend. They rode IBM and later Compaq and the other PC cloners coattails to make Windows dominant, acquired the software that would become Office, and ever since they've been trying to copy/take over markets others have created.

They succeeded copying Novell, failed copying AOL (remember Microsoft's walled garden version of MSN?) failed copying Google, failed (well maybe succeeded somewhat) copying the Playstation, failed copying the iPhone/iPad.

When they've been first, as with their multiple attempts to make Windows tablets dating back almost 20 years, they've utterly failed to make something anyone wants to buy. They have to wait for someone else to show them what the market wants, so they know what to build.

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iThing builder Foxconn applies to be mobile network operator in China

DougS
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"peak Apple"

I think at this point that despite Apple stubbornly refusing to show any proof that it has "peaked" the Reg figures they'll keep playing because eventually they'll have to be right. Well, providing the Reg is still around to witness Apple's decline, that is :)

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New BOMB detect-o-tech 'could give sniffer dogs competition': TRUE

DougS
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Re: @Crazy Operations Guy

You don't need a big batch of it to test a detector, and could easily keep it below the "blowing your limbs off" threshold.

Though it would seem easier to ask those who work with it if they could part with a quantity equal to a couple grains of sand. However, I suppose there's probably no sanity in the laws governing its control and even that small of a quantity is treated as being just as dangerous as a 55 gallon drum of the stuff.

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PROOF the Apple iPhone 6 rumor mill hype-gasm has reached its logical conclusion

DougS
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Re: so

If the phone is kept face up you don't need a notification light, because the screen turns on with the notification already. I guess this is intended for those who keep their phone face down, though I imagine the camera flash at 1/10th normal brightness could serve equally well as a notification in this case.

This is probably something someone saw in an Apple patent a couple years ago and decided they've had sufficient time to design it into a product. Thing is, companies file patents all the time that never see the light of day in actual products...

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Why has sexy Apple gone to bed with big boring IBM?

DougS
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@Pete 2

Sorry, you have a total misunderstanding of how chips are designed and made, apparently.

Think of it like this: let's say Samsung had a Star Trek food replicator, that let you make any food that had the recipe programmed into it. Apple created the recipe, Samsung provides the replicator. Apple could (and will it sounds like this fall) take that recipe to someone else who has a food replicator. There aren't a ton of options that can handle Apple's needs and scale, but there are at least: TSMC, Samsung, Intel, Global Foundries, IBM. Maybe UMC.

It is Apple's 100% internally produced design. There are some tweaks you need to make to it for a specific process, but that's akin to knowing that a certain oven has the temperature reading a bit high and the eggs you're given are a bit smaller than normal and making adjustments to your cake recipe to compensate.

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EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers

DougS
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Re: You really want Apple Gov.

Do you really think Apple is going out of their way to code Safari so Here Maps don't work? More likely it just doesn't work. You can find sites that don't work properly on every browser, there are none that are perfect.

If Nokia wants Here Maps on iOS they can make an app. Google has a Google Maps app, and Apple hasn't stood in the way of it, so I'm sure they would approve a Here Maps app for people who want it. If I lived elsewhere, that's probably what I'd want, from what I understand it is the best mapping solution outside the US.

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DougS
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Re: Do I detect...

Samsung is only friends with Google at the moment because they need Android. If they are able to get Tizen out the door and get some traction behind it, they'll be happy to leave Android behind for as much of their product portfolio as they can and take all the revenue Google is making off them for themselves.

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Wham, bam, thank you NAND: SanDisk SSD sales soar

DougS
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SATA as a limiter

Depends on what the drive is being used. For sequential access, it is a big bottleneck. For random access, not necessarily (or at the very least, much less so)

Even with sequential access, it depends on what the sequential access is for. For big file copies, sure, if that's a bottleneck for you. But if you're doing something with that data that's another story. For instance, if you're I/O limited now but will be CPU limited at 200 MB/sec, upgrading beyond SATA is pointless unless you can do some major CPU upgrades (more cores, since you won't get 3x more IPC or 3x more clock)

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Want to legally unlock your phone from its network? The US Senate says that's A-OK

DougS
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Re: [Obama] promptly passed the buck and said it was up to Congress to get it done.

Every president "rides the line" of what is actually granted to him. The problem is that each president takes what the last president did as a starting point, and pushes that line a bit further. Obama is going a bit further than Bush II, who went a bit further than Clinton, and so on.

It isn't just executive orders, but also rulemaking from the executive branch as a whole. A president could issue zero executive orders and still be pushing the line out if the agencies under him push the line - obviously with his consent as he has the power prevent it.

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Phab-u-less: Huge MONSTER iPhone 6 not due until 2015 – claim

DougS
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WTF?

Re: @Gis Bun

And already there is a "correction" story out there...

http://www.cnet.com/news/apple-reportedly-fixes-battery-issue-with-5-5-inch-iphone-6/

Well that was quick!

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DougS
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@Gis Bun

What production snags has Apple been hit with? Whatever issues they've had have not delayed the introduction of anything other than the white iPhone 4, four years ago.

If they had enough issues with the 5.5" model to actually delay it, and it is proven to be an actual delay, it would be the first time in years. But rumors have suggested for months that the 5.5" model would be released a couple months after the 4.7", so if the 5.5" isn't announced when the 4.7" is, is that a delay? Or has it always been the plan? We may never know. But this analyst will take credit for it, as will those who suggested a late intro was the plan all along. And if they are both introduced at the same time, this analyst will say they managed to fix the production problems just in time, and the other guys will say they changed their plans. They never admit when they're wrong, and most of the time we can't even know for sure when they're wrong.

There have been several pictures/videos with 4.7" parts, but nothing with 5.5". Unless those are fake, this proves they've started test production runs on the 4.7" model. So I take that to mean they haven't started test production runs on the 5.5", unless it is being made in a different location with better security...

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Can nothing trip up the runaway cash monster that is Intel? Well...

DougS
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Investors aren't counting on Intel to succeed in mobile

Because they won't. But Intel dominates in PC CPUs, and whatever decline there is in PCs will be made up for by increases in servers.

Intel's mobile revenue may actually be negative, when you add in the "contra revenue" they had to pay to induce companies to buy their mobile SoCs at all.

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iWatch 'due November'... Y'all know what time it is? Now you do

DougS
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@Matt_payne666

What the hell watch do you have that costs four figures but requires CHARGING?

I wouldn't buy a watch that required charging every two days if cost $25.

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DougS
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@garden-snail

Yes, because taking your phone out of your pocket is such a chore...

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DougS
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It isn't permanently implanted in your body

Can't help with your second objection, but your first is rather stupid.

Its not a pacemaker, you can leave it on the surface. You don't go to 100 meters with your smartphone, do you?

There's nothing in particular stopping them from making it waterproof to 100 meters, since some watches are made to do so. If it used wireless charging it wouldn't necessarily have to have any openings on it. But even if that was the case I'll bet it would be only rated to a few feet, or maybe 10 meters, since that's deeper than 99% of people ever go. Those who dive to 100 meters or more are the definition of a "niche market".

Off topic, but when I was a kid my dad gave me a 25 jewel Swiss diver's watch he got as a perk for depositing $10K in a bank in the Bahamas. It was rated to 660 feet, I believe. I wore it in the pool, wore it in the shower, because I figured I didn't need to bother to take it off. Only problem was that when the chrome plating on the back wore off after a few years it was not stainless steel underneath, it rusted, and eventually water got inside from the back! Only watch I ever wore regularly - I have an iPhone, but the only thing I could see buying an iWatch for is fitness tracking. If I buy one I'll wear it during workouts only.

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Big Blue Apple: IBM to sell iPads, iPhones to enterprises

DougS
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I wonder how they'll be sold

Will you just able to buy them from the app store and use them, or will they be "free" but be non-functional without some sort of IBM services contract for your corporation?

It is quite an inspired partnership, each company playing its biggest strength to the other's biggest weakness. Neither company has to go outside its comfort zone at all. If successful, each company will realize a lot of revenue from a market it had not the slightest prayer of participating in without the other.

This could change the face of the BYOD movement. Who would have thought a partnership like this could be possible, back in 1984? :)

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Piece of Apple close to smashing CRAZY 2012 share price record

DougS
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Samsung v Apple

The reports I read said that Samsung attributed their change in fortunes to pressures at the lower end from Chinese competition, not at the high end. They might not have made as much per phone on those low end phones as they make on a GS5, but they sell many many more of them. Or sold, now that the Chinese are coming along happy to accept more threadbare margins.

That's the problem Samsung faces with Android - they don't really add any value so if a consumer sees an equivalent product for less, that's one less sale for Samsung. A customer who wants an iPhone can only buy from Apple, so they're insulated from that. Samsung should be much more worried about losing their high end business to competitors like Xiaomi than losing it to Apple, because Apple won't compete on price.

There are of course some who may prefer an iPhone but will accept an Android if they save enough money, but so far that doesn't appear to have been a problem for Apple, as those people have been more than balanced out by new iPhone customers.

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SHARE your big data scientist. They're too costly and rare to keep a whole one – HP exec

DougS
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As always, it comes down to supply and demand. If the supply is short, those with the skills can demand more. Remember Y2K and COBOL programmers?

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Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations

DougS
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Surprise audits

Even a surprise audit isn't that big of a surprise if the people have to come to the main entrance and wait for someone to escort them. Plenty of time for the children to be hustled out the back door or hidden in a disused cafeteria.

The only way to truly know would be an undercover audit - have some people working for the company or third party auditor getting jobs in the factory and keeping their eyes open.

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Get an EYEFUL OF CURRY for the sake of your brain

DougS
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Adjust your lifestyle?

Are there actually things that one can do differently to delay/prevent the onset if aware of Alzheimer's a decade or two before symptoms begin? Or were they speaking hypothetically about what future studies might reveal?

I'm not sure I'd want to know until there really is something that can be done. Otherwise it is just another worry about getting older, but I guess it would eliminate concerns about outliving one's retirement nest egg (i.e., at least I know I'd plan on committing suicide when it had progressed too far)

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Google Glass HOLED: Techno-specs' inventor jets off to Amazon

DougS
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One wink shopping

See what you want, just wink and Amazon will order it for you. With no refunds if your kids snag your glasses and wink at all the toy ads disguised as kids shows.

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Apple: No, China. iPhone is NOT public enemy number 1

DougS
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@JaitcH

There are other types of data, of course, but the location data at issue here is collected by carriers so no matter what brand of phone you have your location is being tracked and recorded. The towers keep logs of attached devices by ESN and signal strength, and can determine your location to a pretty good degree. Google and Apple may have slightly more precise data, but they can definitely tell when you're "home" when you're at "work", and when you're at "your mistress' apartment".

This is an issue for everyone, even those outside the US. Do you really believe the carriers in the UK or Germany never share that data with anyone? Or that the database is hackproof?

If I lived in China frankly I wouldn't care about a US company, or the US government, having my location data. If I was some important government official or an officer of a major corporation, OK, then it matters, but for the common man? I would much rather have China tracking my location than the US, simply because China doesn't have any reason to care about me and can't do anything to me with that knowledge. I don't think that's true of my own government. But since I can't use a Chinese carrier, in reality it makes no difference.

Maybe the Chinese should all own US smartphones, and Americans should all own Chinese smartphones... Let the "other guy" track us, and make it less likely our own government can do so.

The Chinese government doesn't really care, either way they can track their citizens through the carriers, with whom they have a far closer relationship than the US does to its carriers.

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Space geeks' resurrected NASA Sun probe ISEE-3 now on collision course with THE MOON

DougS
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You bastards!

<SouthPark>

Oh my god, they destroyed the moon!

</SouthPark>

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Thought PCs were in the toilet? They're STILL eating Apple's lunch

DougS
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"herds are growing tired of Apple"

Ah, the siren call of the Apple hater. They incorrectly believe that people buy Apple's stuff because of "marketing" or because of "shiny" of because of "sheeple" and think that they're soon going to wise up and realize Apple sucks and go with Microsoft/Linux/Android.

These people have been wrong for years, and will continue to be wrong, because they haven't any clue whatsoever why Apple is successful. Anyone who believes that people who make a choice different than theirs are wrong is wrong themselves. There is not a "right" choice for what PC/laptop to buy or what smartphone/tablet to buy. Once the haters realize that they might quit their wishful thinking that Apple is going to crater in the near future because the sheeple are about to wake up and think like they do...

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DougS
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Re: Profits?

Indeed, if the comparison was by revenue, let alone profit, Apple would fare much better. Even seeing double digits is good for them considering they were down below 5% in the US at their bottom a decade ago.

PCs are a small part of their overall profit anyway, the iPhone alone accounts for roughly half of Apple's profit.

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Dish Network to FCC: Block that Comcast/Time Warner merger

DougS
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Re: Some smoke and some non-smoke

Supposedly Dish was negotiating with Directv about a merger but Directv ended up getting bought by AT&T. Had Dish and Directv come to an agreement, I'm 100% sure Ergen would have said nothing about how terrible the Comcast/TWC merger was, because he'd be wanting to merge himself. But now that there's no one to merge with, mergers are a bad thing because it gives too much power to the combined company.

Of note, the number of customers for the combined Comcast/TWC would be slightly less than the number of customers for a combined Directv/Dish.

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'Green' Apple: We've smudged a bit off our carbon footprint

DougS
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What if they make it so you don't need to repair them? Other than a broken screen, what else is there in a cell phone that a user could even hypothetically service? If the wifi quits, it isn't like anyone else has a socketed wifi chip you can simply pop out and replace.

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Give an exoplanet a new name: Fill in this form and hope these astro-boffins pick your $input

DougS
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Are they sure these exist?

Given that three "Earth-like" planets they thought were out there were shown to be sunspots last week.

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Global protest calls for canning SOPA-by-stealth treaty's IP bits

DougS
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Re: Bah!

The average Joe certainly wouldn't understand it, but we don't have to read and understand it. Someone else will, and they'll tell us what it means, and we'll be all up in arms against it based on their interpretation.

The failure of TPTB in this is trying to keep it secret, and therefore being unable to try to spin its terms differently. If they did that, they could claim the interpretations of others are inaccurate and many sheep would believe them. But if the first thing they hear about it is some sort of worst case doomsday interpretation, they'll rise up against it and kill it like they did with SOPA.

I think it is becoming harder and harder to push through these kinds of backdoor deals by treaty, because someone somewhere in the negotiations will leak them, and social media makes it very easy for average people to rise up against something they'd otherwise never hear about. Just tell them it means losing Facebook, Netflix or eBay, and they'll raise hell!

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Think Google Glass is creepy? Wait until it READS YOUR MIND

DougS
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What we all need?

Speak for yourself, I have no interest in having a computer strapped to my face 24x7.

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Apple rats on Google to FTC: You thought WE were in-app-ropriate?

DougS
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It is pretty sad

That anyone had to tell the FTC about this. Google isn't exactly a small company, and they'd been investigating Apple for the same issue. Didn't they consider maybe checking the competition, especially the one competitor that sells more units than Apple does?

No wonder companies get away with so much!

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Siri, did we just take a hit in that voice-recog patent fight?

DougS
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Source?

I just double checked, and multiple sources show Apple buying Siri the company, not just licensing the technology. Perhaps you're thinking of something else like Liquid Metal that Apple has only licensed?

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IBM's $3bn bet on next-gen computers: Carbon nanotubes, neuro chips

DougS
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Re: how about this for a solution?

Just because a chip CAN run faster doesn't mean it must be allowed to do so. They could continue to segment them with their random incomprehensible product numbers, and limit the throttle on the lower numbered ones.

They'd also be able to continue to segment by power usage, which is more important than performance to most people these days (since modern quad core CPUs are more than fast enough for the vast majority of common PC tasks)

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DougS
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Re: how about this for a solution?

Seems "easier" making chips asynchronous, and avoiding the problems of global clock distribution entirely.

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Snowden leaks latest: NSA, FBI g-men spied on Muslim-American chiefs

DougS
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Re: Don Jefe Muslim president

How would it be for the "good of the nation" to vote to impeach Obama? We've got more important things to worry about than another political show trial. If you impeached every president who violated the Constitution, you should have also impeached Bush II, Clinton (for stuff other than lying about a blowjob) Bush I (for Iran-Contra if nothing else) and Reagan (for Iran-Contra - or if he really didn't know what his underlings were doing, for dereliction of duty)

Besides, if you impeach Obama you have President Biden! Does anyone really want that, other than Joe Biden?

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DougS
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Re: @ DougS

I think it is standard for all presidents these days, since things are so partisan. George Bush was criticized by democrats for his silver spoon upbringing and fake good ol boy shtick.

There are more racist republicans than democrats, but the number of racist democrats is far from zero and there were some lifelong democrats down south who voted for McCain and Romney because they wouldn't vote for Obama simply due to his race.

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What PC sales slump? That's ALL OVER, declares Gartner

DougS
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Gartner is always more optimistic about PCs than reality

They only predicted drops after 2+ years of PC sales drops going against their predictions, so they predicted much smaller drops than what actually happened. Due to a brief blip from XP replacement they seem to be thinking growth is back on the table, but that blip will be past before the year's out and it'll be back to negative growth.

Gartner continues to not understand just how much of the PC business has been based on people who have very modest needs from a PC, which can easily be satisfied by a tablet or smartphone. Same mistake techies make when it is suggested to them - they defend all the things they do that they couldn't do on a tablet, but it isn't about people who work with computers 8 hours a day. It is about ordinary people who use them 8 hours per week or per month.

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ATTACK of the Windows ZOMBIES on point-of-sale terminals

DougS
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Re: Bah!

Not sure about everywhere, but in the business I own, one of the POS devices is able to take over as master in case the server has problems. So it at least would require the ability to accept incoming connections from the other POS devices, and thus still need to be on a separate network.

I suspect that some people don't obey the "separate network" mandate and have POS devices connected to a wireless router. Maybe PCI compliance won't let them do that anymore, but I'm sure it was often done in the past.

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