41 posts • joined 1 Jun 2011
Should I visit impossible.com and Youtube videos to form my own opinion, or should I avoid them entirely to reduce the amount of views they can claim? I'm pretty sure I don't want to endorse the site or its claims, but I can't claim to be informed if I don't check.
in the words of Father Ted (although he did see the movie)...
"Down with this sort of thing!"
Re: "Free schools opportunities have grown during 2013"
Hang on... there are more free schools out there now than in the past  and that also includes new Academies - either as new flagship schools or rebranded failing schools. They all have a budget to buy new kit, therefore the market has been growing. What suggests that free schools might not be getting good value? The schools have to buy and it's in *their* interests to buy the best kit/support/package for their needs.
Still, for what it's worth, I'd rather see schools spending money through Viglen, RM, Stone as UK-based companies, than giving it directly to Dell, Apple, HP or one of the non-UK multinationals.
 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-18819391, for example.
I haven't heard that one before. +1 internets for that.
Oh come on... maybe you've clicked on the first Google result because time's a bit tight. But if you missed the disclaimer, the taxreturngateway site even has pretty graphics showing why they're better than HMRC.
If you're savvy enough to understand that you have to submit a tax return and even fancy having a go online, it's a bit lame complaining that you didn't realise that the website which claims to be better than HMRC is, in fact not HMRC.
Re: I don't care what it looks like
Or perhaps because I have better ways to spend my time than trying to predict which music I might want to listen to in the next week/month/whenever. It probably doesn't matter whether you copy a subset to an iPhone, or to a memory card, it'd just be convenient to fit the whole lot in one and not have to spend time choosing.
...yeah, just like that Xbox thing that never caught on.
I know, I know... Ring of Death... we all like to see Microsoft suffer and all that, but it's just a teeny bit disingenuous to write off all MS hardware projects as epic fails.
Their track record on hardware more elaborate than a keyboard or mouse isn't brilliant.
Re: 97% of the population
Understand it? We dreamed of visiting the metropolitan excesses of Grimsby and Hull... as seen on TV.
Er no, I guess not...
Re: 97% of the population
Thank-you Freesat fans - but unfortunately it's still not a panacea. Perhaps we can prevail on OFCOM to sponsor "free" satellite dishes. Plus installation. Plus replacement after five years when the salty sea air corrodes them to uselessness. At the moment Sky prevails locally, but only because some residents pay for the service and the regular replacement of the kit.
(hashtag unhappyyokel, minorityinterest etc.)
The point is that turning of FM broadcasts would remove an important public service which is available to everyone. Whether or not you like the content, FM Radio remains free and accessible in a way that TV isn't.
97% of the population
It's frustrating that this is another digital switchover which is being pedalled on the basis that coverage for 'most of the population' is a satisfactory target.
Digital TV was touted as the panacea for lousy reception of terrestrial broadcasts for those in outlying areas. Prior to the TV switchover on the North Norfolk coast, we were treated to mostly flawless Yorkshire TV, but nothing local.
After switchover, the DTV signal doesn't broadcast across The Wash - and the local signal hasn't been boosted to reach the coast. The same is true of DAB where the terrain leaves us in the shadow of the nearest transmitter. And don't think the internet will solve it... we're too far away from the exchange for that. Kill the analogue radio and it’s strictly a pay service (Sky TV isn't brilliant but at least it works).
Unfortunately, the 3% of the population could be the ones who need the service for public broadcast. During the recent floods, the only way we could find out what was going on was via satellite TV or analogue radio. I’d imagine the same could be true for a lot of outlying communities where providing coverage is just inconvenient (i.e. expensive).
Re: Who cares!!!
+1 for bothering to check the service before getting all shouty shouty.
That is all.
Fair point Matt - I wonder whether the side menus are simply a reflection of widescreens... there's extra space at the sides, so it's a convenient place for info and buttons to be added.
Of course, none of this explains MS's curious insistence on hiding the Shut Down command. You used to have to "Start" your PC to stop it (well, wasn't everything buried behind the Start button). Now it's just jumbled into the Settings Charm, and not even highlighted as a power on/off button. I've tried to use Windows 8/8.1 'as is', but that's the one weakness I've conceded - adding a Shut Down tile to the Start Screen.
From my POV, one of the biggest problems users have with Windows 8 is where 'know it all' technical people have provided a fully installed PC, on which they've 'helpfully' completed all the one-off, out of the box steps. Like the user tutorial which shows you how to use this new OS and what happens when you hover the cursor over the edges of the screen.
What tutorial? Of course you're baffled, and that goes for all the 'experienced' IT guys who skipped the tutorial steps because they were so excited by the new install. Of course you shouldn't be expected to _learn_ how the new features on your new OS work, that's only for sheeple, isn't it?
Win 8.1 still isn't perfect, but during the first month, it'll repeat the tutorial pop-ups occasionally to remind you how to access the off-screen menus; that's useful and helps to take the wind out of the complaints of "how the hell was I supposed to guess that!"
Really? Not 'The Silence'?
FWIW, I bet I'm not the only one who finds this sort of analysis almost completely pointless, but thoroughly diverting. If this is an advertisement feature, I'll have to consider myself advertised at.
Once upon a time, radios were very basic and relayed a signal at about the same time it was broadcast.
Now with FM, DAB, Sky and Internet radio, they simply aren't synchronised. Can anybody explain in simple terms why the newer the platform, the more lag is tolerated?
More than one commentard has mentioned sports commentary... which is largely pointless if it's thirty seconds behind the action. For that one reason, none of these spanky new wirelesses holds a candle to Test Match Special on long wave.
It's the thin end of the wedge
Just wait until your Telco changes their standard RBT, then 'invites' you to pay for the good ol' fashioned brrr brrr to get rid of their adverts...
Midnight on 22nd October?
Unfortunate timing, especially with Apple 'expected' to hold a launch for their next iteration of iPad later that day.
Given the feedback to recent Apple and Microsoft launches round here, will there be enough apathy to go round?
Well done everybody
I feel like I'm the only one here who hasn't seen Malcolm Tucker in action! Still thanks to everybody for the recommendations.
Now, where was Peter Capaldi in the El Reg readers' poll?
Any suggestions why his name didn't spring to mind earlier?
*Mary* Jane Smith? Did I miss the memo..?
Quite right too
The Zygons are definitely overdue another outing and I hope they have a kick-ass skarasen that does justice to thirty-odd years of SFX improvements!
As for the daleks... you don't have to like all the recent versions of them, but it would have been a missed opportunity if they weren't there. Fingers crossed it all lives up to the expectation.
So are all series bad, then?
What's the significant difference between a TV and a film franchise? On television, series like Doctor Who run seemingly forever (okay, a rest now and again isn't a bad thing) and plenty of people seem to welcome it, despite the quality of the plot/continuity/acting varying wildly. By the comments here, you'd imagine that no film character should ever be permitted to return!
For the record I don't think the episodes after T2 were gripping, but I for one welcome another chance to see the T1000 on screen again - and maybe it'll be worth watching. And if you're worried about the plot, since it's likely to be wall-to-wall CGI, why not just overlay the dated stop motion from the original film with contemporary FX?
This is a BOFH story waiting to happen
I know the BOFH has been involved in robot challenges before, but mostly on his own turf. What are the possibilities for a robot ambush (and counter-insurgency) campaign at the local supermarket... Or perhaps a few amendments to the stock management and delivery system.
Presumably with the right access to the control system, there's no reason why these little chaps should consider themselves limited to the supermarket aisles. I'm mean, what if a mischievous rascal felt inclined to 'persuade' the robot to follow customers home. I wonder what the effective range is...
Oh come on...
...there was a War of the Worlds before Jeff Wayne, you know.
But fair play to you, I prefer Jeff's version too.
Re: What's all the fuss about?
IE probably does need paying for at some level, but since its removal hasn't resulted in a price drop for Windows, why do you assume it is making Windows more expensive? Microsoft's pricing does that by itself, not the inclusion of optional software.
Other options are available.
Any budget? Really?
It's easy to forget the difference that spending one's own readies makes, isn't it? But the cheap kit deserves a review, just as much as the crazy priced stuff that we'll never want to shell out on.
If lots of people say it, maybe it'll sink in...
Re: Nah sorry diluted to extreme,...
I haven't seen the film yet, but +1 for mentioning Halo Jones on a dull Monday morning.
Horses for courses
I'm glad to see Kobo is persevering, because choice is good, right? I bought a Kobo Touch before Amazon released Kindle Touch in the UK. I only ditched the Kobo because their firmware update earlier in the year bricked it and I couldn't be bothered to figure out why. Well done WHSmith: they didn't have a replacement in stock (which I'd have taken) so they issued a no-quibble full refund!
I replaced it with a Kindle Touch. YMMV, but I preferred the configurability of the Kobo for text size and spacing, its choice of touch zones on the page and a wider choice of typefaces (somehow none Kindle's choice of 3 fonts pleases me). I preferred the Kindle's because its menus are less cluttered and Amazon offer my newspaper on subscription. I couldn't choose between them in terms of e-ink clarity, page turn speed, compatibility (hello Calibre!).
I didn't experience the same problems of Ambivalous Crowboard, but a bricked device doesn't make anyone happy.
Good news about the backlight though. I'm sure it'll drain the battery, but I'm sure it's a step in the right direction. Next stop: cross-device syncronisation for sideloaded ebooks please!
Missing an opportunity
Hang on, haven't Google already beaten them to the punch? They must have streetcammed a lot more of the number plates at their home location than the plod. Shouldn't there be some beneficial link between the two. Maybe they could come up with a way to cross reference number plates with emails from WiFi traffic in the area...
Mine's the one with... oh never mind, it's a rubbish idea and it would never happen, would it?
Re: You seem to have missed the word "terrestrial".
I think "terrestrial" is in there. As in "...the transfer of terrestrial broadcast content from spectrum to the internet..." There's no reason why satellite systems couldn't share the load though.
Thing is, they want to free up this "spectrum" thing by killing TV transmissions so they can make more money by selling it to 4G, 5G(?) and whatever else. Doesn't it seem a bit odd that one of the main benefits of this brave new wireless world is that you can send and receive more mobile data... thereby providing bandwidth to allow all the happy new users to receive a TV signal anywhere? Unlike the current broadcast system which allows you to receive a TV signal anywhere.
Thinking outside the box...
...maybe that's the time to remember why we put some of the ideas outside the box in the first place.
Nothing new here... IT saviour Surrallan was there before he was Surrallan. If we'd all bought the stunning Amstrad Integra, British IT would be in a very different place now!
Mine's the one with the stack of floppy disks in the pocket...
This GPS contract is advertised as a 'catalogue' of hardware to save public sector purchasers from having to do the legwork to compare different vendors' products and prices. But nobody is forecd to buy from it, and if [insert name here] Council don't like the brands in the catalogue, they can just continue to buy the same as they've done already. The absence of key names from the GPS award (direct sales from Dell and HP?) suggests that it'll present a poor alternative for buyers who are comfy with their current provider, even if resellers are touting the same brands. There's no saving to be had if you don't buy from it.
As for saving 20% off the opening prices... well, dur! Which vendor would realistically start an auction event with their lowest possible price, before seeing what the competition is trying?
Beer, because it's Friday, beer o'clock.
There's lots to worry about but...
...one thing which springs to mind is what the press will make of the list of unrestricted accounts when it inevitably slips into the public domain. "Look... this MP has children, but still checked the box to view porn. What a filthy pervert/irresponsible parent/disgusting excuse for a person..."
I'm sure somebody previously referred to Alan Partridge calling reception at the Travel Tavern and asking "can you make porn come on my TV..." It's exactly the same thing. Obviously.
Re: Surprisingly reasonable
Not taking anything away from Apple's new kit, but cheaper ultrabooks _are_ out there. Google Shopping tells me that Toshiba Satellite Z830 can be had today for under £700 (as long as you're prepared to take your chances with an outfit called "John Lewis"). IIRC, the Reg reviewed the Z830, mentioning that it had an RJ-45 port which is why I kept it in mind.
Of course, if you want an i7 processor like the new MBP, you have to pay for it... that's not an Apple thing!
Like it really matters?
The view from "the channel" (i.e. the middlemen who resell MS software) supports an opinion that corporate users won't be challenged by Windows 8 in a hurry. I haven't spoken to a single large organisation who has the slightest interest in Windows 8 for the first year of its life and still won't be interested until SP1 has been proven.
Windows 8 won't affect existing Win XP/Vista*/Win7 desks so as far as business users are concerned, MS could cock up the whole of the launch version of Windows 8 (not just the UI) and it won't matter. And it will continue not mattering until the dust has settled after SP1.
* yes Vista... check out all those poor souls administering to the Olympics
Nothing to see...
...well, if a lack of a hole constitutes "nothing". Or is that a lack of nothing so there's something to see? Anyway, looks to me like somebody should have tried harder to photoshop the slot for the SIM holder.
Windows 8 Preview
Just a thought... if the ghastly Metro interface _wasn't_ a mandatory part of the Windows 8 preview, how many peope here would have tried it then ignored it without providing any feedback. By forcing preview users to use Metro, MS have got that feedback. Of course, whether MS reacts to it is a different matter!
Has anybody seen anything from Microsoft that states that the Metro interface will DEFINITELY be mandatory when Windows 8 launches?
Re: Re: Better Value?
Really? Obviously you pay Dell and Toshiba more for next day onsite service than their return to base service, but I never met a Toshiba notebook which couldn't be paired with a NBD onsite warranty. Toshiba's Up and Running warranty is even better... It's not foolproof, but you don't have to wait for an engineer, they'll just attend and stick your hard drive in a replacement chassis.
Of course, you can't help users who want to save money by choosing a cheaper service contract which doesn't offer the support they need!
Close, but no cigar
The article states that Microsoft is taking action against Comet for manufacturing counterfeit recovery discs. Unless Comet is an authorised replicator for Microsoft software, that would be a fair cop.
Microsoft OEM partners (e.g. Dell, Toshiba, Asus etc.) are permitted by their OEM agreement with Microsoft to create recovery discs for their customers. They’re not obliged to and they can charge what they like for them, but they can’t burn their own. They create a master (to meet MS guidelines which make the discs specific to each OEM) which is duplicated by an authorised Microsoft replicator.
Comet sells other brands of computers, they don't make their own. They can’t have an OEM agreement with Microsoft to replicate recovery media because they aren’t the Original Equipment Manufacturer.
Comet might have replicated the discs with the best of intentions (let’s face it, it’s probably to reduce after sales cost/hassle) but if they’re not licenced to replicate the software it’s illegal whether they charge for them or not.
@Steve Knox: you’re right – many large organisations buy lots of systems with the same config and don’t need an OEM recovery DVD with each PC. That’s actually even truer of organisations with volume licence agreements: they can purchase their volume licence DVDs from any MS volume licence reseller.
The memory cheats
Others have said it before, the memory cheats, there's just no way of "de-classifying" a classic lost story from the old series when the DVD comes out and everybody realises it was actually a bit pants. (Discontinuity Guide, IIRC?). I grew up watching Tom Baker's stories, but I don't remember watching wobbly Daleks, hunchbacked Cybermen or most of the backgounds in "Underworld" being CSO'd at the time.*
Davison's Doctor had to tolerate petulant companions and their emotional outbursts, and although they never tried to snog him, it was just as mawkish as some of the recent schmaltz.
I've still enjoyed all of that on DVD recently, but for a long time, lack of exposure meant I could only remember the best bits. If I'd been able to watch the old series as often as the new episodes have been repeated on BBC1, BBC3 and other channels, I reckon I'd have ripped them apart and tired of them a long time ago.
BTW, Does anybody else think it's ironic that the awful phrase "timey-wimey" originated in "Blink", one of the best regarded of the new stories?
*everyone thought the Myrka was crap. First time, every time.
How much could they save?
Well said. 1,500 drivers with an average salary of £46,000 (say the BBC)... that'd be £69 million per year that TfL could redistribute. Fair enough, some of it could be usefully spent on more visible and helpful staff, but the rest would make a good contribution towards paying for full automation on the lines which already support it. The numbers look very inviting when you imagine the savings over 10 years or more.
Of course, it's a long shopping list of things to improve: aircon, more trains (or just more trains per hour), Oyster cards that don't spontaneously lose their data...
6 years liability does not mean a warranty
The seller *can* be held liable for up to 6 years but only where the consumer can prove that the equipment was inherantly faulty at the time of sale and could reasonably have been expected to have lasted for longer. After six months of ownership, even if you follow it through Trading Standards and the courts, the owner will need to prove that the fault didn't occur after purchase through misuse or simple old wear and tear. That can be very difficult, even if you're dealing with a reasonable person. It's really difficult to prove that a computer has _never_ been dropped, flooded, left to over heat, overclocked or otherwise interfered with in a way that causes it to break down.
Now, if you were talking about an HP notebook battery *cough*...
- Review Ubuntu 14.04 LTS: Great changes, but sssh don't mention the...
- Vid CEO Tim Cook sweeps Apple's inconvenient truths under a solar panel
- HTC mulls swoop for Nokia's MASSIVE Chennai plant
- Asteroids as powerful as NUCLEAR BOMBS hit Earth TWICE a YEAR
- Got Windows 8.1 Update yet? Get ready for YET ANOTHER ONE – rumor