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* Posts by Vector

275 posts • joined 21 Feb 2011

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Is living with Dolby Atmos worth the faff?

Vector
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Facepalm

Re: Damn

Why? Replace your 7.1 receiver with an (overpriced) Atmos receiver and you're done.

So, let's see if I have this right. Atmos installations in a theater use a matrix of ceiling speakers to achieve their (in my mind questionable) effect. Now, we're being told that 2 speakers can imitate that effect in your home. Oh, and we'll just subtract the side channels from your current setup and replace them with these special ceiling bouncers. So, instead of two side speakers (which are often mounted high anyway) we've got 2 Atmos channels that fill in the center of the sound field by bouncing the sound high.

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Will.i.am gets CUFFED as he announces his new wristjob, the PULS

Vector
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re: Multiple Devices

Better yet, how about one device that connects to the cellular network which all your other devices can use for access?

Oh, but that will cost you extra because of all the additional data you're using on your capped data plan.

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FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones

Vector
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"I've never been someone who is a scaremonger..."

...but, in this case, he'll be happy to make an exception.

I wonder if it has ever occurred to him that even if Apple and Google didn't put encryption into their systems, it wouldn't stop criminals from puttting it in themselves?

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Intel, Asus charge sneak into US mobe market with ATOM-powered PadFone X mini

Vector
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Re: If only they made the phone part...

I actually think this is where we should be going in mobile, though ASUS's execution with the padfone line has been a bit clumsy thus far. The one with the 10 inch tablet accessory had the phone sliding in at a 90 degree angle from the tablet screen which would require a lot more software adjustment to the sensors. Ultimately, that's a nightmare waiting to happen as one of the settings doesn't transition and your device is 90 degrees out of whack. It was also a bit pricey.

Other than that, the only difference between a smartphone and a tablet these days are the size of the screen and the size of the battery. The other components are pretty much the same. I've wondered why there aren't more products like this out there. Samsung could certainly do it with their 11-pin MHL. I guess the biggest obstacle is Android itself. It's too myopic to adapt to different screen metrics in one device.

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Gates and Ballmer NOT ON SPEAKING TERMS – report

Vector
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Re: @I ain't Spartacus to buy a failing company

Wow. In the US, the square cabinet was the norm and lived well into the 80's. I think consoles even managed to survive until the late 70's here.

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Vector
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@I ain't Spartacus Re: to buy a failing company

"Why were they ever called set-top boxes? I don't recall seeing many CRT tellies that had a flat enough top that you'd balance the video on them..."

Apparently, you're not old enough. In the early cable era, when settop boxes made their first appearance, there were tellies that you could (and most did) use as a table!

They're called that because that is, in fact, where they originally sat in virtually every household.

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Slap for SnapChat web app in SNAP mishap: '200,000' snaps sapped

Vector
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Devil

Proving once again...

...the internet does not know what impermanence is.

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AndroidScript returns to Google Play Store: Ad giant YIELDS TO THE MIGHT OF EL REG

Vector
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Re: Droid®Script

We..!?

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Vector
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Re: Droid®Script

"I don't think Google get sued by Mr Lucas for putting 'An' in front."

That would be because android is a different word from droid and a dictionary defined term making it generic and distinct. IIRC, Lucas "coined" the term Droid for the original Star Wars as an exotic alternative to saying robot.

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Vector
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Re: Droid®Script

Yeah, he's not out of the woods yet...

In the US, every time you see an ad for one of Verizon's "Droid" phones, you'll see the Lucasfilm Droid trademark disclaimer in not so fine print at the bottom of the screen.

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HTC débuts Desire Eye, 'GoPro-slapper' RE digital snapper

Vector
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Dear HTC

Enough with the carrier exclusives already! First, the One M8 Windows Phone comes out as an exclusive for Verizon. Now, the Desire Eye is being sold exclusively through AT&T.

I don't know how to tell you this but you're not Apple! Few (if any) will switch carriers to get one of your phones. All you are doing is limiting the market for these devices. I would take a look into the Desire Eye since it looks like a good mid-range phone (nice specs, don't care about the cameras) but I'm not switching to AT&T so I guess I'll wait and probably forget.

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Google AXES AndroidScript app used by 20,000 STEM coders WITHOUT WARNING

Vector
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Re: Technically, they aren't being evil...

Actually, this seems more robotic; the wheels of the machine grinding on.

I guess now we'll see if there's anyone at the controls.

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Nvidia's screaming new Maxwell GPUs bring 4K gaming to notebooks

Vector
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Re: What ... you mean your notebook doesn't have a 4K screen?

"10 years ago laptop screens were 1920x1200..."

Yeah, sorry, I guess I was thinking of next month's phone!

...and I don't quite get that: most of the phablets coming out are already at QHD (on a 5.5 inch screen, no less), yet you have to pay a premium just to get FHD on a laptop.

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Vector
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What ... you mean your notebook doesn't have a 4K screen?

Naw...that'll be in next month's model.

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Atlas snubbed! Ad blocker says it can kill Facebook's stalker tech

Vector
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Re: This "Facebook" you speak of

"No, it's where people are sold."

So...it's where corporations buy things..?

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Vector
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Meh

I'm so glad...

...I don't have a Facebook account.

Of course, I'm far from safe.

I use Google.

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So long Lotus 1-2-3: IBM ceases support after over 30 years of code

Vector
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Re: RIP, Lotus.

Yes, it was the benchmark for the original clone market. At my first computer store, since we didn't have an IBM dealership, we spent a good year testing various MS-DOS boxen to see if they could run 1-2-3 out of the box. If it couldn't run Lotus, it wasn't gonna sell. IIRC, there were a couple that had tweaked their BIOS's specificly for it, though they were crap otherwise.

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Apple blacklists tech journo following explicit BENDY iPhone vid

Vector
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Thumb Up

Thumbs also for the apology:

If you're listening Apple, we're sorry for what we said to your Peak CEO back in the good old days. Can we have a free bendy iPhone, please?

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Coming to a theater near you: the TETRIS MOVIE

Vector
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Really?

" it can hardly be much worse than the film adaptation of Battleship..."

Wanna bet?

Battleship was a pretty far reach for a screen adaptation, but at least there were ships to work with in creating a storyline.

Hollywood really is out of ideas, aren't they.

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SPECIAL iPHONE TROUSERS will ease Apple into the fashion world

Vector
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"If the iPhone 6plus rids the world of skinny jeans hipsters..."

Fat chance

I guess we could dream though...

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US Attorney Gen latest to roast Apple, Google mobe encryption

Vector
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Re: fallacy of false choice

"Give the keys to a variety of authorities and make it so that a significant subset of key holders is required to gain access."

How would you feel about a door to your house that had locks to which those same authorities had keys? There's lots of locks, so just one agency can't get in. Not only do you have the concern about official intrusion, but somewhere out there are a bunch of keys to your house that you have no control over.

These officials still fail to grasp that if there's any sort of backdoor, it will be exploited.

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Super Cali so litigious, Uber is the focus. Even German judges say it's something quite atrocious

Vector
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Re: Sung it in my head...

Yeah, on the one hand, it's a nice turn of a headline. On the other: damn ye, now I'm going to have that song in my head all day!

The only thing worse would've been It's a Small World...

Ah crap!

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FBI boss: Apple's iPhone, iPad encryption puts people 'ABOVE THE LAW'

Vector
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Re: Court orders, and enforcement.

I find this to be a very interesting 5th Amendment issue, though probably in my legal naivete.

It seems to me that the information stored on mobile devices is akin or maybe adjacent to the information stored in people's heads. To compel them to allow access to that information is to compel them to incriminate themselves even if indirectly which would be a violation of their 5th Amendment rights. I'm sure courts have established otherwise, but then, they think corporations are people and money is speech.

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Man's future in space ... Barack Obama: Mars. Narendra Modi: Mars. Vladimir Putin: Er, Moon

Vector
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Re: No Brainer, Really....

"It is much easier to SAY you're going to set up a lunar base than to actually do it."

That may be true, but is it more difficult to do that than to create a large scale space station? It would certainly be easier to scale once established.

The fact is, we need a staging point somewhere around this planet in order to do anything really effective beyond its orbit. The Moon may not be the perfect place, but it's a lot better than lifting everything out of the Earth's well. We may start with having to import everything from Earth anyway, but with time, we could probably figure out how to use the local resources for some purposes.

The plans for going to Mars as they stand at the moment are going to end up just like our little jaunt to the Moon. We go, we bring back some rocks, we say we went, then forget about it for 50 years because it was too expensive.

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Apple: SO sorry for the iOS 8.0.1 UPDATE BUNGLE HORROR

Vector
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Re: @Vector

Are we sure he's gone? I coulda swore I saw him and Elvis at a gas station in the Nevada desert!

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Vector
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Re: Maids a milking

"Was it an unrealistic deadline or was the realistic deadline simply handled poorly?"

Depends on whether the Reality Distortion Field™ is still in effect.

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4chan outraged by Emma Watson nudie photo leak SCAM

Vector
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pointless

Yet another fine example of ignorance. Go ahead, shut down 4chan. All you'll accomplish is the mass movement of it's participants to the next vogue black forum.

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Apple iPhone 6: Looking good, slim. AW... your battery died

Vector
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@DougS Re: @Vector

"The merchant doesn't have power in this relationship, so they aren't going to get this"

The merchant's power lies in simply not adopting the system. No adoption=useless feature. I know that they've announced some support at the launch, but in the modern world, no data means no real advantage for the merchant, thus no motivation to adopt.

What is Apple's compelling case to the merchant that will overcome losing access to all that nifty marketing data? If they are. Which I very seriously doubt.

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Vector
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FAIL

Re: Security

"So not only are you safe when the next Home Depot style breach hits (about one per month lately) you don't give their Big Data machine any personally identifying information."

Believe that at your own peril.

At some point, in order to complete the authorization, the card issuer has to connect that "one-time code" to an actual customer account. Since you can bet that your friendly merchant really likes their Big Data and can simply opt out of any POS system that doesn't get it to them eventually, they are probably going to get all that data in a summarized monthly statement from the issuers. Maybe not the card number itself, but just about everything else.

The other question this article brings to mind: Can you still use Apple Pay if your battery's flat?

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Exercise-tracking app not QUITE fit for purpose

Vector
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Headline should have been...

..."Fitness Tracker not Fit to Track"

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I sold 10 MILLION iPhone 6es at the weekend, says Tim Cook. What did you do?

Vector
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Re: Good!

"I'm having trouble seeing what the fuss is about."

I think it's simple really. I suspect there have been a lot of holdouts over the past few years who wanted a bigger phone but didn't want to give up the iPhone. For those people, the 4 series (double the resolution but same size) and the 5 series (wide screen aspect but basically the same size) held little interest. Note the many comments on these very forums from people still using their 3GS's. Now that larger phones have been released, many of those people have finally jumped.

As far as Mr. Cook's claims about these being "better in every way," well, let's see:

  • Processor: Pretty much always the case in a new phone
  • Camera: Yeah, those keep seeing incremental updates as new tech becomes available
  • Apple Pay: Whee! NFC finally! Oh wait, it's not really useful NFC, just a payment system
  • Bigger Screen(s): About time. One of them is even an industry standard rez.
  • New case design: Purely a matter of taste

So, ok, better, but mainly because some improvements have been long overdue.

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Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp

Vector
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Re: Interesting to see if other services follow

I certainly hope it gets decoupled from Google Play. I've been using Android long enough that my account doesn't have a G+ profile. This means, however, that I can no longer rate or review apps unless I submit to the borg and create one. I find this rather annoying, since I have zero interest in social media.

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4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch

Vector
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Re: On being slowly boiled alive with video standards

There is also the fact that Blu-ray players can play DVDs making the upgrade less necessary.

As far as 4K is concerned, some of these techie execs need to crawl out of their studios and go stand in the average person's living room. Are we really going to see screendoor on an 1080p 46 inch display viewed from 8 to 10 feet away? 4K is more like the audiophile market: about 2% of the population will notice the difference and the rest will get on with watching whatever crap is served up.

And, yes, on the net please. The vast majority of the stuff I watch, I'll watch once and never again. I have a collection of DVDs that are gathering dust (at least they were cheap when I bought them). I might pull one or two out to watch in a year.

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Wanna keep your data for 1,000 YEARS? No? Hard luck, HDS wants you to anyway

Vector
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Holmes

Re: 1000 years?

"we'd still be gawking at those hieroglyphs..."

I've often wondered what archeologists several thousand years from now would make of all these shiny silver disks that started to appear in the late twentieth century.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s

Vector
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Re: @Vector

"Are you trying to convince us that paperback is the ideal reading size..."

No, but I am pointing out that the most common size for modern reading material is much closer to 16:9 than 4:3, so I don't buy the whole "4:3 is so much better for reading" argument anymore than the "you'd have to sand down your fingers to use a 7 inch tablet" pitch or any of the other justifications that come out of Cupertino.

Besides, I don't know if you've noticed, but iPhones have been 16:9 for a while now...

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Vector
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"It's a damned site better than 16:9 for reading..."

Really? Because the standard size for a paperback (178mm x 110mm) is a lot closer to 16:9 than 4:3.

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As bankruptcy looms for RadioShack, we ask its chief financial officer... oh. He's quit

Vector
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Re: Another one bites the dust...

Naw, it's still kinda useful.

I go to Radio Shack for parts (switches, jack, cables, etc), which means I go there less and less.

They had a niche but weren't satisfied to stay in it.

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Half a BILLION in the making: Bungie's Destiny reviewed

Vector
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Re: Why does the Moon have gravity?

"... to which the answer is "gameplay is crap without it"

No, the real answer is: They were too lazy/short on budget/<insert excuse here> to rejig the physics for the different planets. The Moon and Mars would have significantly reduced gravity compared to Earth. Venus is close enough that you would barely notice (I think. Not like I've ever been there to try it).

Oh, and I don't think I've ever referred to grinding "affectionately."

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Apple's Watch is basically electric perfume

Vector
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Coat

Re: Not for fitness nuts

"You can't be a company that washes its hands of water damage (pun unintentional) that at the same time tries to push a device that's designed to be worn without any protective covering on someone doing exercise."

So you're saying it's a fitness tracker that's not fit to track?

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Vector
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Re: Surprisingly disappointing (because of a lack of awareness)

"Yes, there are other smartwatches out there. But this one is actually useful."

Please explain to us how this wrist computer is any more "useful" than the ones from Samsung, Moto, et al? Because from what I've read about it, it can be a timepiece, a fitness tracker and it can display notifications. Oh! and apparently, maps though I question just how useful a map that size would be. Most of this is the same hype I've heard from all the other manufacturers who have failed to gain any traction, IMO because there's little traction to gain.

Many, if not all, of us grew up with the notion of how cool it would be to have a computer wristwatch (in my case, it was envy of Dick Tracy's wristphone, but I'm old) . Now that they can actually be made, you start to realize just how crappy a device that small is as an interactive device.

Apple will probably sell a fair number of these things. Not because they're useful, but because they're from Apple. The same reason most of the press was raving that Apple had "made" a new product segment with the introduction of this watch that, as with every other wrist device to come out thus far, has too little functionality for far too high a price.

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Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch

Vector
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"hard to tell them apart, other than the shape of the home button at the bottom"

I always find this rather humorous. When the touchscreen is the dominant feature and the primary interface point, you're going to end up with a rectangle, possibly with a few hardware buttons sprinkled around the remainder. The only other real question is how thin can you make it.

Of course they all look about the same. Until someone comes out with a foldable screen, they're going to continue to look about the same. Once those foldable screens come out, they'll probably all look like mini portfolios.

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PHABBA-DABBA-DOO! Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Edge, Gear VR – feast your eyes

Vector
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Low Latency Audio? On Android!?

Could it finally be?

:slaver:

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Toshiba makes play to replace NFC with own speedy short range tech

Vector
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Re: Buying from a Kiosk

Oh, I like the tech. I just think the scenario posited is dumb. If that's all they can come up with to market this thing, then the poor tech is doomed.

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Vector
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Buying from a Kiosk

"They think the answer is consumers paying for content at things like sports stadiums and pop concerts."

Then they're dumb. Have they stood in a concession line (or the line for the restroom) at one of these events? Just what everyone wants to do, queue up in yet another line. It's particularly idiotic if you consider all the longer range solutions available for that market. Why would I buy the thing over a wireless link on my phone and then go stand in line to collect it? Wouldn't some sort of local wifi access point be a bit more efficient?

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Good luck with Project Wing, Google. This drone moonshot is NEVER going to happen

Vector
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Re: I would like 1 bag of skittles

"Detecting power lines isn't difficult? Against a contrasting background in good lighting, perhaps"

My goodness, how human-o-centric!

You are assuming the drones will be as dependent on vision as people are. I believe they could have a range of other sensors which would be far more effective than sight in power line detection.

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Vector
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Re: I would like 1 bag of skittles

Yeah, most of the "problems" mentioned in the article are overstated. 3D mapping? No real need as long as the drone has an adequate sensor array onboard which should also take care of most of the obstacle issues.

The real problem is going to be physical security. Google and Amazon are going to be real bummed when less savory types start knocking their drones out of the air, not only for the device itself but also for the goodies inside!

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Apple 'fesses up: Rejected from the App Store, dev? THIS is why

Vector
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Re: Suggestion for another rejection criteria

"At least you see better transparency about the required permissions on Play."

Yeah, but in this case, better amounts to foggy smoked glass as opposed to a brick wall. Much as I enjoy the OS, I find Android's permissions to be overly broad and have wished many a time for more granular control over them (read contacts so we can create shortcuts? Don't need that feature: deny).

And, yes, I know I could get that if I rooted my phone, but I'd really rather not. And I really shouldn't have to!

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Not even CRIMINALS want your tablets, Blighty - but if that's an iPhone you're waving...

Vector
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But, but, but..!

That iPhone "find my phone" thingie has made iPhones very undesirable to criminals!

At least, that's the justification lawmakers here in California used to pass their nifty new kill switch legislation.

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One step closer to ROBOT BUTLERS: Dyson flashes vid of VACUUM SUCKER bot

Vector
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Trollface

Re: I bought a Dyson - wouldn't get another one...

Was it in the last place you looked for it?

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End of buttons? Apple looks to patent animating iPhone sidewalls

Vector
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Re: No, nothing like Youm

"Youm only showed a display wrapped around the edge. No haptics, no virtual buttons, nothing like that."

Looking at the pictures, I'd have to disagree, on the buttons, at least. I see lots of icons positioned on that roll-off part of the screen and I think I even saw a scroller in one pic. You could say an icon is different from a button, but I say if you press it to do something, I hear it quacking.

Besides, in the realm of obviousness, who'da thunk a screen curving over the edge of a phone could be incorporated with a touchscreen to be used for various inputs!? How innovative!!!

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