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* Posts by Esskay

565 posts • joined 9 Aug 2011

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Boffins: Proto-humans had stone spears HALF a MILLION YEARS BC

Esskay

Explains the existence of this guy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXNppLFxeXY&feature=plcp

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World's LEGGIEST BLONDE is super-rare millipede living in SF

Esskay
Coat

Re: I was waiting for it to tie itself in a knot.

only when they get completely legless.

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Apple staff call Taiwanese filmmaker an 'idiot'

Esskay
Trollface

No they're not.

They belong to Apple.

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Esskay
Joke

They might be his books...

But they're Apple's books "on a mobile device".

It's part of their new range, soon to include:

A Tale of Two Cities On A Mobile Device

Pride, A Mobile Device & Predjudice

2001: On A Mobile Device

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Lawyer sues Microsoft rather than slot an SD card into his Surface

Esskay
Happy

My god

What a pleasure this man must be to have at a party.

It's like ordering a beer and complaining that part of the glass is taken up by the head. The difference of course is that such a complaint is usually rewarded with a perfectly justifiable punch in the face.

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US petitions Obama for better policing of its mega-cities

Esskay
Happy

What to do with all the leftovers (ie lawyers)

Perhaps someone could create a petition for a soylent solution to world hunger?

Kill two birds with one stone, so to speak.

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Samsung readies bendy smarties for 2013

Esskay
Go

I imagine

It'll be a design feature - a very slight curve in the screen, possibly as another stylistic point of difference to the fruity firm. Alternatively a grid of apps that really did curve around the edge of the phone would look pretty cool (if completely pointless).

It's uses as a "foldable" screen are dependent on the minimum curve radius that the screen can handle.

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Facebook stock plunge halts - despite insiders being freed to sell

Esskay
Facepalm

Alternatively

Their attitude might be "how much fucking worse can it get?" If you've still got stock after this long you might as well hold on and hope... Of course the intelligent thing to do would be to get out while they're still worth something - but these are Facebook investors we're talking about...

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Automatic Facebook couple pages: Nauseating sign of desperation

Esskay
Joke

Re: Divorce

Can't wait to see Google+ respond to this with "Google Relationship Analytics" - number of partners, amount of sexual intercourse with each one, average length of relationship, country of origin... All laid out in cute pie and line graphs.

(Although the "Audience Retention" graph might be somewhat depressing for some...)

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'I'm a PIRATE' confessions spew from OED iPhone dictionary

Esskay
Thumb Up

Re: Is this the Daily Mail or something?

"Airing dirty laundry in public is a big no no."

And I imagine publicly accusing people of "stealing" when they've paid legitimately will be seen as being massively more offensive in Japan than in the west - the sort of thing that a few dollars won't necessarily fix.

There's no question that Enfour have royally fucked themselves here. Letting a few people get away with it if it means no innocent people are caught in the net is *much* better from a PR point of view than getting all the guilty ones plus a few innocents - surely rule #1 is make sure you know people are guilty before taking the law into your own hands? the libel lawsuits will be coming thick and fast I imagine. No doubt there will be protest piracy as a result as well.

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Esskay
FAIL

omnishambles [ˈɒmniʃamb(ə)lz]

noun [singular]

(UK, chiefly politics)

A situation that is bad or mismanaged in every way.

eg. Between the car accident, the food poisoning and the lost keys, the holiday was an omnishambles.

Synonyms:

-clusterfuck

-debacle

-fiasco

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Toyota motors ahead with radar crash avoidance tech

Esskay
Happy

Re: Given Toyota's previous experience with failing brake systems in the USA ...

@Jaitch:

Whilst the wilds of the Ontario wastelands must be beyond the comprehension of us mere driving mortals, and requires the insight and knowledge of a True Driving God (tm), I believe the system being tested by Toyota is directed at urban environments (ie. not traversing a frozen lake in a truck whilst hauling half the forest next to an active volcano during a hurricane). Presumably for situations where you feel the need to traverse a ravine whilst being chased by bloodthirsty indigenous tribes and giving yourself a tattoo, Toyota will provide the option to turn the Pre-Collision system "off".

Also FWIW pretty much every manufacturer has had recalls dealing with an issue that could cause an accident - I detailed the issue Toyota has had with ABS (and it's had no other major recalls "in the millions" in the period from 2009-now involving inability to brake, or failing brakes, so not sure what you're referring to?). I'll take a Toyota over an American SUV any day - at least I won't have to worry about the car flipping out of control on the highway Ford Explorer-style, airbags in my Jeep going off, Sticking throttle in the Ford Escape, engine fire in the Ford Escape, the list goes on... If a recall is an indication that a manufacturer should stop doing something, perhaps the US should stop making cars altogether?

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Esskay
Facepalm

Re: Given Toyota's previous experience with failing brake systems in the USA ...

I recall (heh) that much (roughly 2/3rds) of the issues regarding Toyota's "unintended acceleration" recalls involved people who didn't realise the floormat had been pushed forward by their feet. The other issue was a sticking throttle pedal - nothing, whatsoever, to do with the braking system. The only brake issue they've had was with ABS software for the Prius - regenerative braking was delayed momentarily if you hit a bump under brakes. It didn't involve the unintended acceleration lawsuit and TBH you don't strike me as the Prius driving type.

It's not entirely dissimilar to the "unintended acceleration" lawsuits involving Audi back in the 80's - but back then it turned out that people were slamming their foot down on the accelerator thinking it was the brake (not exactly sure how, I think stupidity had a lot to do with it). Considering Americans' history with inability to put their foot on a brake pedal I think this type of tech is not just a good idea, I think it's borderline necessary.

by the way - seatbelts aren't just a good idea for when you hit *someone else*, they're also capable of protecting you when *someone else* hits you. I've never put a point on my licence, and apart from a couple of fender scrapes, never been in an at fault accident (and never had to make an insurance claim). But that doesn't stop some moron in an audi ploughing into me because "the brake pedal looked kinda funny".

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Humans becoming steadily STUPIDER, says brainiac boffin

Esskay
Happy

"[a] citizen from Athens... would be among the...most intellectually alive of our colleagues..."

...until a moment or two later, when he or she would presumably walk out in front of a moving bus.

How we measure "intellect" changes over the years - we're probably less intelligent in some areas, but have adapted to value skills that are more suited to the environment in which we live. Like bus avoidance.

I've often wondered how it would be to try the reverse hypothetical - to be plonked back in the ancient greeks time. And tell them about atoms, molecules, penicillin, internal combustion, etc... much of our knowledge has built on what the best and brightest have discovered over 1000's of years - whilst as individuals we may not have the same capacity as ancient greeks, we instead have the communication ability to work together with our neighbors and share advancements without instantly trying to kill each other (most of the time).

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El Reg mulls commentard icon portfolio shake-up

Esskay
Thumb Up

couple of ideas

-Bring back the Steve Jobs icon - but turn it horizontal, and make it appear as though it's rotating.

-A patent lawyer hanging from a noose.

-With Windows 8 and WP8 hitting the scene like mr creosote doing a bellyflop, how about a Ballmer icon? To express general loud noises mentalness (maybe replace the megaphone with him).

-a "here's an idea..." icon would be nice - maybe a lightbulb, Einstein, etc

-I rarely use the ROTM/foster parents icon, but that's mainly due to an unfortunate lack of stories that require it, rather than an innate dislike of it.

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Brits admit to using mobile phones during sex - and not in a good way

Esskay
Paris Hilton

I'll admit I'm not as experienced as I'd like to be

But surely there are better things to hold in your hands during sex than a phone? Unless you're a fanboi, in which case I imagine the phone is an integral part of the experience...

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McAfee ‘not a suspect’: CNN report

Esskay
Coat

Sounds like

they got a false positive

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Lockheed to cyber-armour its supply chain against 'the Adversary'

Esskay
Happy

victory against "the adversary"

Makes everything sound a lot more awesome than it really is.

catching the bus, making the red light, doing a poo...

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Apple granted patent for ebook page-turning

Esskay
Trollface

*opens Video Editor*

*clicks on "transitions"*

*starts filing patents*

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35 US states petition for secession – on White House website

Esskay

The "illegals"

are sadly effectively used as slave labour - why you'd kick them out is beyond me, considering they keep production costs down and allow average americans to live a much higher standard of life than if they had to pay the "illegals" a decent wage. Not to mention border patrol required to kick them out immediately becomes Texas' problem - and the US won't be too happy if you don't do your neighbourly duty and stop them from entering the US.

Whilst Texas produces a lot of oil, the US has been making a concerted effort to reduce reliance on foreign oil - and Texas' secession would result in your oil being just as foreign as the Saudis (although from the tone of your post I'm guessing they'd be much nicer to deal with).

What "stuff" from Mexico or Latin America are you referring to? apart from the "illegals" I'd say Texas relies on US companies a lot more than the US relies on Texan companies - all goods distribution channels are US owned companies - I'm sure if Texas decided to increase the price of oil above what the US feels like paying on a given day, or tried to prevent goods travelling through Texas, the US could turn Texas into a starving little dustbowl fairly easily.

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Nokia woos disgruntled iOS users with rebranded maps service

Esskay
Thumb Down

Elop said that usage of its map products is now 75 times higher than this time last year

Nokia still has map products? I remember ovi maps from years ago, but it's been a while since I heard it take a breath.

Besides, I don't think he's fooling anyone with that "75 times" nonsense - Nokia's smartphone marketshare is less than 5% in latest figures - a 75 fold increase to *get* to that figure is depressing. Like a schoolkid looking proud as punch because he got 5/100 questions right on his maths exam.

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Brits swallow Google Nexus 4 supply 'in 30 minutes'

Esskay
Happy

Managed to snag a 16GB one here in Oz

But a lot of unhappy people missed out.

As far as I can tell, they went on sale at 11:20am local (sydney) time, I ordered at 12:30pm and the 16GB models were gone before 1pm. 8GB models lasted a bit longer, but not by much.

It's not the perfect phone, but the price makes it an absolute steal (plus vanilla android's quick updates means an always up-to-date phone).

From what I've heard worldwide stocks were *very* limited (which would explain the lack of preorders), possibly as a sweetener for their partners (who obviously make competing phones) also the fact that the phone must be being sold at something approaching a loss means that they're probably not sacrificing production of profitable models in order to get the Nexus out the door. Ultimately Google aren't a hardware company, hitting record sales numbers on day 1 isn't exactly something they need to keep their share price up, so they're probably happy to keep them trickling out at a constant rate and getting them out there when they do. Historically Nexus phones aren't volume sellers the way the SGS3 is, the popularity in the wake of SGS3, iPhone5, Optimus G, Lumia 920 probably comes as something of a shock to even Google.

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Peak Apple: Forstall was 'closest thing to Jobs they had left'

Esskay
Mushroom

Cut the head off the snake...

Such control from someone as "visionary" as Steve Jobs means that when he leaves there's a big gap at the top - the bigger the control freak, the bigger the gap. From all the stories, Jobs was the biggest control freak there was, and Forstall was the closest they had to bridging the gap. Presumably the race to fill that void meant that a bunch of smaller fish all took bites out of the bigger one - giving themselves a much greater chance of getting to the top, but a much smaller chance for the company to be able to fill the void.

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Steelie Neelie admits laptop hack during IGF

Esskay
Devil

Re: Great Success!

Hi there, your APPLE_DEVICE has been affected by a third party! To prevent PR disaster, just send login details, email addresses, passwords, etc to: i.r.haxor@phishmail.ru and your APPLE_DEVICE will be fixed.

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Plastic screen outfit teams with Epson to offer screen on your plastic

Esskay
Facepalm

Popular with consumers? Yes

Popular with credit card companies? God no.

Having your balance on a credit card is like having "smoking kills" on a fag packet - It's a constant reminder that you probably shouldn't buy what you're looking at. The whole appeal of a credit card (IMO) is that you don't have to "worry" about paying at the same time that you're impulse buying - you delay thinking about payment until it becomes just another bill to pay. Whilst most of us can control out habits, for big spenders I can see this as having a prophylactic effect on purchasing - great for the consumer, bad for the card issuer.

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Report: McAfee founder wanted for murder in Belize

Esskay
Coat

Did they do a full search of the house?

Or just a quick scan?

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'iPhone 5S' said to begin trial production next month

Esskay
Meh

Munster

Sounds like one of those apocalypse nutjobs insisting the world will end on a certain date - only to "revise" his claim due to "new interpretations" of the information provided to him by sources that only he has access to.

At least apocalyptical types bugger off after getting it wrong a few times - analysts just start predicting something else.

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Bitcoin Friday sale event kicks off with deep discounts

Esskay
Thumb Down

Coinabul

Buying "discount" gold and silver over the 'net - sounds dodgy

Buying "discount" gold and silver over the net using a "currency" famed for security breaches and theft - sounds really fucking dodgy.

I fail to see what it is that makes people think "I'm sick of using physical currency or a credit card or a bank transfer for making purchases - I think I'll sink thousands into a untried, potentially volatile, insecure currency used by almost no-one."

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Apple, HTC kiss and make up

Esskay
Happy

Re: Android fragmentation is logarithmic

"no... victories against Apple products"

Been living under a rock these last few weeks, yes?

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Teen project sparks WORLD-WIDE PEE-POWERED HYPEGASM!

Esskay

beat me to it

Shirley the word "Lagos" in the article should have a few eyebrows raised... not saying it's not possible for anything truly innovative to come from there, but given the track record of being promised a large return for just a very small initial investment I'd say this *could* be the first scientific 419 scam.

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Apple-v-Samsung $1bn iPhone fine: 'Jury foreman was biased'

Esskay
Pint

Re: Good luck to them, but

Hah! I didn't even spot that. Well picked.

Here's an upvote to counter the lawyer who obviously didn't appreciate your good humour.

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Esskay
Thumb Down

Good luck to them, but

No doubt this will be portrayed in US media as "Massive Faceless Korean Corporation goes after little freedom-loving American Inventor who loves kittens and Apple pie".

Ever since the beginning this case seems to have been devoid of all logic, I don't see why anything would change now.

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Apple seeks cooling fan patent for iPhone, iPad

Esskay

Re: not sure about the clutch

the clutch on your car has a relatively massive surface area, thick layer of friction material, and weighs a number of kilos. Its life is based on the amount of material it can lose before no longer providing enough friction to turn the driveshaft/diff/axles/wheels. It doesn't need to exist in the vicinity of sensitive electronics (in fact it exists in a bellhousing isolated from both the gearbox and the engine, partly so that clutch material doesn't contaminate the oil and partly so that oil doesn't contaminate the clutch plate, which will cause clutch shudder).

*carrying* energy isn't the issue - the strength of the diaphragm pushing the plate against the flywheel determines how much power it can effectively carry (as well as the formula of the friction material, but clutch plate pressure is the most common/cheapest way to give a "stronger" clutch).

Dissipating heat IS an issue. Car clutches are actually pretty bad at dissipating heat (sit in traffic for hours on a hot day slipping the clutch and the pedal will get spongy, and there are plenty of vids on youtube of people thinking they're spinning their wheels when they're actually frying their clutch - usually because they allowed a tiny bit of slip, which heated the clutch, which reduced it's friction coefficient, which very quickly resulted in the clutch getting fried). Sitting in a confined bellhousing with no ventilation is part of the reason clutches "come back" very slowly once overheated, a fact seen quite a lot at the beginning of endurance races where a car has to get off the line with a full tank of fuel as quickly as possible - usually by slipping the clutch a bit.

The clutch on your car is also not a centrifugal clutch - a centrifugal clutch will slip and engage as soon as the rpm of the shaft on which the shoes are attached to exceeds the point at which the centrifugal force acting on the clutch shoes is greater than the springs holding them in. A bit like those old "flying saucer" carnival rides where you get pushed out against the walls, but instead of the walls being attached to the bit spinning, friction between you and the walls is required to make them spin. Every time the motor spins up enough for the fan to engage, there will be some slippage, and to use the clutch to run the fan at a lower speed will require constant slip (according to the design referenced in the article).

Put your car in gear, handbrake on, and constantly slip the clutch (give it about half throttle, and let the clutch out until rpm sits around idle). Then see how long your clutch lasts. (and how hot it gets - I'm guessing it won't be too long before it starts smoking).

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Esskay
Meh

not sure about the clutch

the idea of a centrifugal clutch to control fan speed doesn't seem that great - this requires slippage, and thus wear on the clutch shoes. Besides the obvious issue of this wearing out the clutch shoes quickly, the material from the shoes needs to go somewhere - and since it's in the bowels of the phone, I imagine everything will be quickly covered in powdered clutch material (aided by the airflow from the fan pushing the dust everywhere). Not to mention slippage=friction=heat, which adds to the problem the contraption is designed to alleviate. Not saying it won't work, but surely there are better implementations - at the moment this just sounds like a solution looking for a problem.

<sarc> But hey, who needs a phone that is maintainable and lasts a long time? If a small component wears out you just buy a new phone, right? </sarc>

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At last, a bionic arm that passes the Beer, Egg and Looks Cool tests

Esskay
Pint

Re: Incredible

^This.

The prosthetic treads the line between "looks a bit like an arm" and "KILL IT WITH FIRE" beautifully, staying on the right side of the Uncanny Valley.

Ultimately, everyone wants an arm that looks like terminator, so they might as well stop making them look "life-like" and just go with it.

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Esskay
Thumb Up

That. Is. Awesome.

*goes into shed*

*gets hacksaw*

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Japanese car nuts build racecars powered by shouting 'Brrrm! Brrrrrm!'

Esskay
Joke

Apparently

If you make turbo "Whoosh!" noises you get an extra speed boost.

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Volkswagen Beetle car review

Esskay
Unhappy

Not a bad looking car, they've done a much better job of capturing the original than they did with the last one, particularly with that roofline... but unfortunately, it's going to be sold in the same showroom as the Golf and the Polo.

Essentially being a (soon to be superceded) Golf with contrived interior space due to the styling, you'd have to be a really massive beetle fan (or a really massive wanker, depending on perspective) to try both and still choose the Beetle. Even if you convince yourself you can live without the space, you then have to justify to yourself that it's worth more than a Polo - despite the fact that the smaller, cheaper to buy, cheaper to run, (presumably) cheaper to insure, less wank-ish & better handling Polo also comes with an extra seat in the back.

Also the imitation sidestep on the bottom of the doors look pants.

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Bradley Manning submits partially-guilty plea in WikiLeaks case

Esskay
Meh

Re: 'Partially guilty'...

"pleading guilty by exceptions and substitutions"

IANAL but it sounds like he's saying he wants to plead guilty, but only to a lesser charge. To be fair, the book appears to have been not so much thrown at him as launched from an ICBM, so I wouldn't be surprised (particularly after this long and after so little damage has been done by his actions) that they accept.

The big mark against him seems to be that he's "jeapordised america's security" - but this is a claim that only holds true for so long. Once years have passed, the information becomes irrelevant and no-one has been hurt as a result of it, it becomes hard for a harsh penalty to be brought down with the public supporting it. It's almost as if the courts were waiting to pin something on him, but nothing ever came up, thus losing the momentum they had.

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Edible iPhone case goes on sale in Japan

Esskay
Thumb Up

Take a hint...

"Using touch screen: 18% ・Touched by friend: 81%"

Says a lot about what most iPhone users' friends really think about them.

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What made us human? Being ARMED with lethal ranged weapons

Esskay
Joke

It's kind of ironic

That the next war will be fought and won by people sitting behind computer screens who couldn't throw a spear without seriously damaging themselves.

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iPhone maker Foxconn hatching US factory expansion plan?

Esskay
Happy

"reverse transference of knowledge"

knowledge always transfers from well-educated to less-than-well-educated. The US now falls into the latter category (thanks in part to "evolution is wrong so I'll teach my dang kids the proper way to bash a bible without no skoolz"). There's nothing "reverse" about it - it's the way it's always been, it's just that the US is now in the special-ed category and China, for all it's wacky communistical ways, is now teaching it's people stuff that helps its growth. Ironically it's the Communists that are letting ideology take a back seat to education now.

I can just imagine LCD screens being assembled, carefully, quietly and efficiently by chinese workers, before being "disassembled" into three parts with "PUT TAB A INTO SLOT B" written in massive red letters across them, before being shipped across to the US so that 'merkins can slowly and carefully "assemble" them again. (alternatively, fully built screens are shipped to a "quality control" factory in the US, where a conveyor belt whisks the screens through a room full of americans at high speed. If an american gets within 2 metres (6 feet) of the conveyor, cheeseburgers and coke are automatically dispensed into the far side of the room.)

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Apple is granted a patent on the rectangle. No, really

Esskay
Trollface

Meanwhile, in Beijing...

not a single fuck was given.

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Microsoft demos real-time English to Chinese translation

Esskay

Clippy Reborn

HI THERE!

It sounds like you're trying to abuse someone!

Would you like me to:

-insult their mother

-insult their country

-mention the war

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Esskay
Happy

Different approaches

I was always curious as to why a system similar to SwiftKey couldn't be used for voice - ie. looking at words grouped together as a sentence to "guess" what the last one probably was. In many ways, it seems it would be easier to improve accuracy with whole sentences than it would be when giving an AI simple commands like "open", "close", "delete", etc since there's context in a sentence that can be used to help "fill in the gaps" so to speak.

Since there's still a delay of a few seconds in Microsoft's system, having a delay to look at words in a sentence before providing a translation wouldn't be too inconvenient. Also using a library built from previous calls (although it creates a privacy issue) or requiring the user to read out loud a few pages of a book (tedious but helpful) could help.

At the very least it'll make the experience of getting a cab to your hotel in a foreign country after stepping off a 24 hour flight a bit less mental

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Apple removes apology-hiding JavaScript from UK website

Esskay
Thumb Down

so...

instead of pushing below the fold by auto-resizing, they're pushing below the fold by leaving the image size at "really fucking big".

Usually when a PR train derails, an organisation's first reaction is to stop the train. Apple seem content to run it into the ground.

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President Obama declares VICTORY over JUSTIN BIEBER

Esskay
Unhappy

@ DrXym:

According to the horrific radio station at work (which I sadly have no control over and is fiercely guarded by a team of stapler-wielding co-workers) that has already happened. Apparently he's now "grown up", which presumably means he can perform autotune assisted ramblings about kissing girls instead of just talking to them.

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Apple iPad Mini 8in tablet review

Esskay
WTF?

"And I do see a fair few folk out and about taking photos with tablets."

Doesn't stop them from looking like complete fucking wankers.

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Apple's anti-Googorola patent lawsuit tossed by US court

Esskay
Joke

War of the #3:10-cv-00661-bbc

From the moment the invaders arrived, patented our air, food and drink, they were doomed. They were undone, destroyed, after all of man's gadgets and devices had failed, by the most Fair and Reasonable Agreements that man, in its wisdom, put upon this earth. By the toll of a billion phones, Motorola had earned it's immunity, it's right to survive among this planet's infinite patents. And that right is theirs against all challenges. For neither do men search nor swipe to unlock in vain.

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Yahoo! To! Sell! Home! Gene! Test! Kit! In! Japan!

Esskay
Thumb Down

Fuck. That. Shit.

And people worry that Google knows too much about it's users. What happens when yahoo! (inevitably) goes under and the creditors swoop in to sell everything they can get their hands on to the highest bidder? (I realise Yahoo! claims it's just a middle-man selling the kits on behalf of another company - but I can't see a struggling search company simply doing this out of the goodness of their hearts without getting a peek at the data themselves.)

I don't trust companies' "altruistic" claims very much when they're doing well, I trust them even less when they're desparate and trying to stay afloat.

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