172 posts • joined 21 Jun 2007
Am I the only one here to be boggling at the idea of a 4.5" screen being the "mini" option - I can remember people mocking my (late, lamented, stolen) Galaxy S2 for being ridiculously large... :-)
Re: banning these devices in cinema's is a bad idea
That shows a certain lack of ambition. Given a few years development I'd imagine you might be able to do something along the lines of...
"Google, download a computer generated digital model of what that actress/actor is likely to look like nude and overlay it over their character in real time..."
...with the result that you'd be able to have any/all of the characters in a film appear naked kn every scene rightbthe way through. Obviously, depending on the movie and cast this may or may not have sufficient entertainment value to leave on for an entire movie :-)
"Star Wars' concept of space was a new telling of space. Space before Star Wars had mostly been a camp Saturday romp. Satin cat suits in Buck Rogers and phallic-shaped rocket ships belching smoke in Flash Gordon."
Right. So 2001: A Space Oddysey, Forbidden Planet, The Day The Earth Stood Still, Things To Come, The War of the Worlds, The Thing From Another World, This Island Earth, When Worlds Collide, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers (to pick just a handful of the Hollywood films made before Star Wars which addressed SF/space themes and received significant mainstream attention without the aid of satin catsuits or phallic rockets) never happened then...
Re: Record Label
"Rumors: They will make a new record label"
Well it didn't do Warner Brothers any harm. Something over 40 million copies sold I believe... :-)
Re: As much as I hate to say this....
BT's infrastructure was provided by the taxpayer almost 30 years ago and it came with an expensive universal service obligation (rememberr the "Thunderbirds" advert?) and a license which prevented them offering entertainment services. After 30 years the bits of the network which are still in use are more of a hindrance than an asset (all that dodgy "last mile" copper and aluminium wiring we all love to complain about) and it's only recently that they've been able to offer services like BT Vision which allow them to add value to the basic services.
In the meantime BSB, TalkTalk et-al appear to have done precisely nothing in terms of infrastructure while (what's now become) Virgin Media picked up the assets of failing regional cable TV franchises at knock-down prices and have done nothing to extend their presence outside the areas originally served by those franchises. If they don't like the idea of doing business on BTs terms maybe they could at least make a start on putting their own infrastructure in place?
I spent a number of years working for Symbian, and for Symbian licensees. In that time I met some of the cleverest, most imaginative people I've ever known (and quite often wondered what the heck I was doing there alongside them) and felt I was contributing to something rather special, which I felt genuinely proud to have played a small part in.
And this is how it ends...
In spite of being out of the "family" for quite a few years I'm genuinely sad about this.
Best wishes to everyone who was part of the Symbian story. Heaven knows that (with the benefit of hindsight) mistakes were made along the way but on the whole you have my utmost respect...
Re: Nice to see them catch up with the girls
"The Guides have gone for a blanket ban on God...
"The scouts are allowing all religious beliefs, the Guides have come down on the side of one religion that cannot tolerate any other belief but their own (Atheism).
To leap from the Girl Guides having an initiation ceremony which don't directly reference religion to an institutionalized intolerance of religion on their part is a feat of logical gymnastics which both impresses and terrifies me.
If you have any evidence of the GG excluding anyone on the grounds of religious faith then there are any number of newspapers who'd be delighted to hear from you as I imagine would various statutory bodies - if you've got it then it's your public duty to produce it, if you haven't then it's my public duty to point at you and laugh...
Re: If they make it cheap enough
"A tablet with a keyboard, isn't that a notebook?"
I think that kind of depends how good, and how large a keyboard....
There are keyboards you'd happily bang out a substantial piece of prose or a few thousand lines of code and there are keyboards which are better than an on-screen keyboard (like the iPad I'm using to post this comment), don't use up valuable screen area, but which you wouldn't want to do much more than the odd brief note with. A notebook needs to be pretty close to the former, a tablet can get away with the latter and (to my eyes and fingers at least) would still by-and-large be a tablet.
Re: Powerful stuff
" who is writing SF with a British background now? Is there a hole in the market?"
Ken Macleod (The "Fall Revolution" and "Engines of Light" sequences, The Execution Channel, The Night Sessions, Intrusions, etc, etc) and Charles Stross (The Laundry books are very British - just possibly not quite the Britain we inhabit..., Halting State, and Rule 34).
Re: Hang on now...
"So....a 4chan Plan then, not a Reddit Plan? At a push, perhaps "4chan Plan, supported by Reddit users"
Or maybe a 4chan plan using a Reddit exploit as the attack vector :-)
"Liz Fitzsimons of "legal innovators" Eversheds..."
Does anyone else here find that the phrase "legal innovators" fills them with a deep seated existential fear?
Re: "I am not a very good number two."
Does that mean I shouldn't say that it's about time VM laid some more cable...
"Give it 3-4 years and Samsung will be back making pretty average fridges and microwaves."
...along with the oil tankers, power stations, hospitals, heavy construction equipment, insurance, theme parks, department stores, and jet engines. Seriously, mobile hadsets are just one part of an electronics division which is one small part of a highly diversified industrial behemoth...
I suspect they'll be around considerably longer than Apple.
Re: What if?
Aria: "What if?
We manage to ban guns and remove them totally from society?
a would be killer will use an axe or a kitchen knife.
so we ban them.
then they use a screwdriver or a pen.
so we ban those too.
Banning things does not stop the root cause of these killings..."
We've had some experience with (more or less) this scenario here in the UK and while you're quite correct on the last point it would be quite hard for a crazed lunatic with an axe or kitchen knife to run the bodycount up anywhere near the Sandy Hook score of 26...
Lisa Potts (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lisa_Potts) was a very brave and determined young woman, she sustained serious injury as she faced down a nutter with a machete intent on butchering the children in her care but I doubt she'd have fared as well against the same nutter with an assault rifle...
Re: Watches are already on the decline
Jai: "this is funny - the majority of the people i know stopped wearing watches over the past 10 years or so. these days, with a decent phone in your pocket, there's no need."
I see this line a lot but I can't help feeling that there's probably a reason why fob/pocket watches (lovely as they are, and I've got three...) were replaced by wristwatches for everyday purposes...
Incidentally today I'm sporting a discrete, tasteful self-winding Omega which was built in 1967 - it cost me ~£40 from eBay as a non-runner, ~£60 for a clean and service by a local watchmaker (good quality mechanical watches are surprisingly difficult to kill), it's not ostentatious enough to make me look like I'm trying to make some kind of point with it, I'll never find myself sitting next to someone with an identical model, it gets nods of appreciation from watch geeks, and given modest care and a simple basic (clean and lubrication) service every few years it'll be running just as well and looking just as good long, long after I'm dead. Not sure you'll be saying the same about modern mass market electronic watches (smart or otherwise) - if nothing else replacement battery availability is likely to leave a lot of them as display only items...
You get an upvote for that. For me the compelling thing about Netbooks is that they can be treated almost as disposable and hence go to places and situations you wouldn't dream of taking an expensive Ultrabook or Macbook Air (particularly if we're talking of your own kit bought out of your own budget) - as an exampe I was always perfectly sanguine about chucking an Asus Eee in the tankbag of a motorcycle (and leaving it there as I refuelled either the bike or myself) and perfectly at ease with paying for replacement if it got nicked or fell out under a bus (don't laugh, this actually happened to me!).
If something's small and light enough for me to take anywhere and use everywhere then that's what I want to do with it, this carries a risk potential that (for me at least) doesn't sit comfortably with the price tags on the current crop of Ultrabooks and tablets (I'm posting this from an iPad by the way), particularly inexpensive tablets, don't offer the functionality I get from a Netbook with it's (albeit cramped) physical keyboard and range of standard applications...
Re: Speed comparison
"Not fair to take NAND block erase into account when looking at speed, block erases and wearleveling are normally done when the chip is idle (background garbage collection), "
You really don't want this in a mobile device if there's an alternative. I spent a considerable amount of time working on power management for smart phones in a previous incarnation and the first rule is that if something isn't doing something useful (and having a NAND driver chip faffing around doing housekeeping to compensate for the failings of the underlying technology when there's an alternative which doen't need it definitely comes into the "not useful" category for my money) it gets put into a low power standby mode (or ideally powered down completely) as soon as possible. I'm seeing a definite battery life win just from this here, and that makes this interesting in itself.
You'd be amazed at how much effort goes into minimising the amount of time hardware (up to and including the processor core(s)) spends powered up and idle. Or given the difference in battery life between the Symbian OS devices I worked on and their Android/IOS equivalents maybe you wouldn't... :-(
Re: more than apps - @Nick De Plume
@Steve Todd: "It looks like the Fandroids haven't found a decent re multiplexer yet given the number of down votes that got. Maybe they should explore the options, they may be surprised."
Well, with my Fandroid head on snd my Samsung Galaxy in my hand I don't need the remuxer because everything Just Works. With my Fanboi head on and my iPad 2 in my hands (which as it happens it is, because that's what I'm posting from!) I've got several remuxers and:
A) The files I've been working with (motorsport events which aren't broadcast in the UK) are considerably over 1GB and none of the remuxers are anything like as fast as you suggest when working with 8GB files, OK my PC is getting on a bit, but it works just fine for everything else and I'm damned if I'm going to replace a machine I'm otherwise quite happy with...
B) Every now and then something in the chain objects to the audio encoding in the mkv and the only way round it is splitting out the audio and re-encoding which is a PITA .
Bottom line is that not supporting common formats which everything else in the house (couple of Samsung phones and a couple of set-top streaming media players) will quite happily work with s a bit poor, and while it's not neccessarily a complete deal breaker it's a considerable black mark for some people, myself included...
Re: more than apps
"Calling the Nexus 10 a great media device, when most of the media delivery is through scaled up phone apps is a biased opinion at best."
On the other hand it can play high definition video from .mkv files (and other non-iApproved iFormats) without outside assistance, which is more than my iPad can manage...
Re: Crap rises to the top
"Unfortunately, due to UK defamation laws, we cannot publish your comments about Steele & "
That probably tells us all we need to know about he content of that post.... :-)
Oh, that's stirred some memories up...
For my sins (which were clearly manifold) I spent an extended period working for The Handset Vendor Formerly Known As Sendo in Birmingham as a contractor working on the Z8 (and later Z10). After an earlier brush with Mororola (actually Metrowerks, who had been acquired by Motorola's semiconductor division), and the odd glancimg contact while working at Symbian I really should have known better...
What I remember as the defining characteristic of Motorola was the vicious, corrosive level of internal competition and associated empire building with divisions, sites, and even teams continuously manoeuvring to either gain control of or simply sabotage products or technologies percieved as a potential threat.
In Birmingham we perceived ourselves as a sort of "Skunk Works" operation flying under the radar and outside the control of the lumbering, process heavy, politically out of control Mothership while taking advantage of its resources and external clout to deliver a replacement for the iconic but flagging, increasingly out of date Razr and it's ridulously named Pebl cousin in the form of the Z8 Motorizr (what was that about ridiculous names). It all seemed to be going quite well until a delayed launch (meaning no handsets in shops when a major media campaign ran), a (with hindsight) embarassing level of bugs in early SW releases, and the launch of the iPhone. Everybody *loved* the "kick slider" form factor and associated mechanics though and that meant we were doomed as we became increasingly visible within the Motorola organisation. Shortly after the Z8 launched a sizeable deputation turned up from France (Toulouse IIRC) "to learn about the platform and evaluate it for use in other products", a little while after that I found myself training a group of French engineers on the toolchain and codebase "to provide support and additional resource", then, somewhat to my surprise I found myself being managed from Toulouse, followed in fairly short order by the closure of the Birmingham site.
I have amusing memories of being confused with a TTPCom employee who shared a name with me. Since I'd previously done a stint with TTP in Melbourn opportunities for confusion abounded, this continued after the demise of the Birmingham site when I turned up at Airvana in Cambridge along with a numbef of former TTPCom staff...
RF remote control? Yes please!
If you have a non-trivial amount of A/V kit in a typical room then it can be difficult to maintain line of site from controller to appliance. In my case I have a TV, an A/V receiver, two games consoles (Wii and XBox), two set top boxes (one BT Vision, one home media streamer), a PVR, and a DVD player - Generally speaking we can manage to control that lot pretty seamlessly with a Logitech Harmony but from some locations within the room it's quite awkward to get line of site to all the bits of kit which needs to be switched on/off or reconfigured for a particular activity, and if a command gets lost (say due to a cat walking across the coffee table at the wrong moment, someone leaving a pile of books in an awkward place, or not having arms quite long enough to place the remote where it can "see" everything) getting evrything back into sync can be a PITA. Not only that but with an RF solution quite a few bits (the STBs, the PVR, and possibly even the A/V receiver) could be tucked away out of sight altogether.
You can get "bolt on" RF solutions which use IR emitters to relay signal to the kit (in fact there's a Harmony which works this way) but they're expensive and involves adding even more kit. A standardised RF solution (and Bluetooth would be as good as any other) would definitely be A Good Thing as far as I'm concerned...
"...why are they giving it to people with HIV already?"
Like you I'm posting from the position of "reasonably well informed layperson who's done a bit of biology at school and read a bit..." but I'll chance a possible explanation...
As far as I'm aware HIV+ doesn't mean a person has "got AIDS", it just means that a person has been exposed to the virus and that it's present in their system, this I assume means that they can see that the immune system responds to the vaccine by producing antibodies which act effectively against the virus.
I'm surprised Steve Bong hasn't had anything to say about this. Has anyone at the Reg approached him for a comment yet?
Never mind the patent grab...
...anyone want to guess at the number of BOFH style lift shaft related incidents, cattle prod attacks, and plain old fire extinguisher mediated blunt object trauma incjuries which will result from widespread adoption of voice input/control in a typical working environment where the rest of us are trying to get on with some work in peace...
..."users who don't want to venture too far from their comfort zone, namely the electronic programme guide (EPG)."
I'm not so sure it's the users who are clinging to the EPG model, in my experience every user who's spent more than about 30 seconds in front of a TiVo (and this includes my 80-something Mother) is perfectly happy without Ye Olde EPG, the content providers however are another matter...
A prime position in the EPG is a valuable marketing tool (and sometimes a revenue stream) for Sky et-al and I don't see them relinquishing control of the interface without a struggle.
Re: Is it just me?
"I get the impression that if Apple's patent lawyers had been around at the invention of the Automobile we'd all be driving something like a 1910 Daimler, due to a court ruling that Henry Ford was infringing their patent by making a "stolen" horseless carriage that worked in a similar way to Daimlers's using similar technology. Whereas all Ford really had to worry about back then was not doing something that was a direct, functional copy of something that Daimler were making and had patented."
This comparison with the motor industry comes up quite regularly.
What everybody seems to overlook is that one George B. Selden did indeed get a patent on a four wheeled conveyance propelled by an internal combustion engine at the back end of the 19th century. In association with one William C. Whitney, and despite it being technically a little shaky (Selden's patent specified an engine based on the Brayton cycle in which compression and ignition take place separately, more like the operation of a gas turbine than the 4 stroke Otto cycle where everything takes place in the same cylinder and as far as I know nobody was ever able to produce a working vehicle based on the Selden patent) he successfully defended the patent in the courts, and then through the Association of Licensed Automobile Manufacturers succeeded in collecting a license fee of $15 per unit with a minimum annual payment of $5000 which was quite a lt of money in those days.
Henry Ford eventually overturned the patent (although with only a year to run you'd have to say this was largely symbolic) but by then Selden and his associates had already made a (by early 20th century standards) considerable fortune, which, in a stroke of irony Selden managed to lose his share of through an unsuccessful attempt to establish himself as an automobile manufacturer...
A sane company would have put a reasonable value (i.e not in the tens of $ per device range) on their UI/UE patents, cross licensed against the mountain of radio related etc stuff required for the phone bit in a smartphone, and picked up the odd few cents per device (which in the quantities this kind of thing ship in woud actually be Quite A Lot of Money) rather than seeking to use FRAND licensing requirements to gain an unfair commercial advantage by valuing the (questionable) IP it brings to the smartphone party at an unrealistic level while paying a pittance for the standards mandated stuff developed by competitors. I can't help thinking that when the principle of FRAND licensing for standards related patents was mooted using it to walk off with your competitors crown jewels for pennies while either asking ridiculous amounts for licensing or (withholding altogether) your own IP wasn't exactly what the originators of the concept had in mind...
As it is I fear that Apple may turn out not to be a sane company, that having got a judgement against Samsung they'll move on to the next page of the classic patent troll's playbook, start working their way down the chain through Sony, HTC, Huawei, Motorola et-al attempting to use the Samsung judgement to either remove products from the marketplace or extract extortionate license fees against the threat of lawsuits, and before you know it they'll have de facto control over two entire classes of device (tablets and touchscreen smartphones) and it will be impossible to produce a touchscreen controlled device acceptable in the marketplace as usable without either paying a lot of money to Apple or risking an expensive court battle with an uncertain outcome. This would almost certainly end in a massive antitrust battle but it still wouldn't be good news for anyone except the lawyers.
In a way it would actually have been better if they'd got a judgement purely on the aesthetic stuff (rectangle with rouned corners etc, although how you could copyright/trademark/patent minimalism defeats me - the idea that an item infringes by sharing the absence of extraneous features, say by being packaged in a plain white box with a picture of the contents on it, seems kind of bizarre...) rather than the technical stuff. As it is Apple now seem perilously close to being able to assert ownership of an entire interaction paradigm regardless of the packaging, and that's not going to end well for anybody...
Typed on an iPad 2 with a Samsung Galaxy SII charging on the bedside table. Haven't mistaken one for the other yet...
Re: Bobak Ferdowsi
""Actually, we call them Persian-American's"
Why? He's American. It doesn't matter where his parents were from. Racism sucks.
Not that Persia exists. It's just a name that is applied to 'nice' things from Iran (like rugs and comedians) to obfuscate origins and separate them from that 'nasty' word in pop culture: Iran."
I've just rebranded my cat. From now on the Dwarf Wookie lookalike which sleeps on my desk will be known as an Iranian Cat :-)
Re: Can't replace the battery?
"Who actually has the thought pattern of "lets put a battery in there that can't be replaced or charged?"
Someone who's just worked out that it could be used for 8 hours a day for 18 months on a non- replaceable, non- rechargeable battery, considered what that actually means in terms of a more likely usage pattern for a gadget like this, and then looked at how much they can save on the cost by missing out the battery access and/or charging circuitry. This might also explain why it's NFC rather than Bluetooth...
Perhaps it's not actually meant to be an over the counter, retail item at all.
Could it be aimed at consumer electronics applications like PVRs, music servers, or even games consoles? If given big enough numbers WD can shave a couple of percent off the cost of these beasties by not squeezing them into a slightly smaller box then I can't see that a non-standard form factor is going to worry the likes of Sony et-al and they may even see not letting the user swap in a commodity replacement when the original fails (or a capacity upgrade is needed) as an advantage...
JimmyPage struck a pose in his embroidered flares with his '58 Les Paul in front of his runic inscribed Marshall stack to say:
"That said, it is intriguing there are so many problems with the Olympics major sporting event underway ... I wonder if there's a capacity bottleneck somewhere ?"
Well Indon't know about anything else but my capacity for cynicism is running pretty close to capacity...
Could this be the largest turd-polishing attempt in history?
Re: IT? really?
"As a side note, I hear that only a fraction of those scheduled to work today actually turned up!"
We'll, the first assumption here is that those scheduled to work today had actually been told they were rostered and/or when and where to turn up. On the basis of the accounts I've seen of the recruitment process this is by no means a safe assumption.
Another, equally likely scenario is that the lucky recruits saw how their counterparts recruited for the jubilee bun fight were treated (i.e. chucked off a bus and left shivering and hungry under a bridge in the early hours of the morning), looked at the level of organisation displayed by G4$ thus far, assessed the likelihood of getting paid on time and correctly, and came to the (almost certainly correct) conclusion that they were about to be on the receiving end of one or both of a cock-up or deliberate shafting of epic proportions.
Good call I'd say...
Re: try this simple test
[Picks up Logitech Harmony, presses single, clearly labelled and conveniently placed touchscreen "button", watches Panasonic TV, Onkyo AV amplifier, Thomson TiVo, WD media player, XBox 360, Wii, Toshiba BD player, and/or BT Vision box switch on/off, and configure themselves appropriately for task at hand]
Seems pretty good to me :-)
Re: Better than BT Vision
"I'll probably get this via BT as it will be better than the current BT Vision box. HD for a start."
I'm kind of hoping (and assuming) this *is* the next BT Vision box...
Re: Nice work if you can get it - be a Union boss
Good luck to him. In this case at least he's clearly doing an excellent job for his members...
Re: "why not contract out the spectrum management to the RSGB?"
"And we can't be having that, though actually the recent rise of the "smart TV" probably means that BT Vision's day is nearly done anyway. Especially so in a little while once people realise that $30 (retail) of hardware plus a bit of free software can turn a "dumb" TV into as smart a TV as anyone could need."
So how are these smart TVs going to be getting their connectivity then?
They're not all going to be in the same room as the broadband router, all the former BT Vision customers aren't going to find that the cabling Pixie has visited overnight to grant them the boon of pervasive Cat5/6, and badly configured cheap WiFi in an environment of other badly configured cheap WiFi installations is still not going to be able to handle multiple HD video streams.
You may hate and despise BT Vision for bringing PLT to the attention of the masses with a ready made use case but if you think it's demise will make the need/desire/market for an easy, simple, and effective way to extend a network round the home go away I fear you may be disappointed...
Re: not socialist
See also Liberal, which also appears to be regularly employed as an abusive reference in The Former Colonies.
There again (and I speak here as someone who put many hours in trudging the streets delivering election literature and the like for the old Liberal party) I'm beginning to think they might just have a point there... :-)
Re: One S
Even when the dual core handset is available at the same (£23 pm) contract price point?
I call Fail on your Fail :-)
Re: type one HOG
I think you may be getting your HOG confused with your SCORPION STARE capable surveillance cam.
Not that they won't both come in handy when CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN goes down...
Coat. Mines the one with the official laundry issue. "WARNING: Content may be destiny entangled with eldritch horrors from beyond space time" HSE compliant mug in the pocket...
"Apple have come up with something nice - copy it and we'll coin the term 'ultra notebook' to define that type of device."
We're talking clamshell portables with trackpads here- when the only real differentiators are hinge design, materials, and dimensions it's a bit of a stretch to talk about anyone copying anyone else.
The only really original design I've seen in this sector is the IBM/Lenovo butterfly keyboard and the first company to build one of those into a slim, small format machine stands a damned good chance of getting money out of me :-)
I think you'll find that Mr Cameron has dibs on Weyland-Yutani Corporation... :-)
JeevesMkII: "...if there's a humanoid robot to be had, the military will get it before the pornographers do. "
Actually I'm not so sure about that, this actually strikes me as one of the very, very, very few situations where there's a really good case to made for a humanoid robot rather than a chip wired straight up to bit of specialised hardware.
Robert Heffernan: "what robot manufacturer will come out with a "Lil Suzy" model for the pedo market, they will get crucified, the pedos won't buy them because it will mean admitting to sales people that your a pedo, and brothels won't buy the robots because they won't want to be associated with that kind of thing. "
I refer the honorable gentleman to Charles Stross's recent novel "Rule 34" (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Rule-34-Charles-Stross/dp/1841497738), and specifically the activities of The Toymaker...
Paris. Clearly an early and somewhat flawed prototype...
Re: Nokia are doomed, but Elop could have done something
"That's nonsense, had Nokia taken the Android route, they could i'm sure be pushing out decent, affordable smartphones that are different from the rest."
Alternatively they could have built a decent UI and development environment for Symbian and be pushing out absolutely stonking affordable Smartphones which are different from the rest...
I have to declare an interest here in that I spent a good few generally very enjoyable years making a pretty good living out of Symbian, doing work for Symbian themselves and (both directly and indirectly) a number of handset manufacturers, but, if you compare the performance and battery life of Symbian handsets with other products running on similarly hardware it's hard to see the alternative platforms as exactly a giant step forward...
"I would not shed a tear for 'broadcast' TV if it means we move forwards to 4G and future technologies - people hold on to the past too much until they see / realise what they could have.
On the other hand it could be that (in this case at least) people hold on to the past because they've worked out just how much investment and disruption would be required to get sufficient broadband bandwidth to support multiple concurrent on-demand HD streams to every last little cottage, hamlet, and farm in those (quite significant) tracts of the country which currently have perfectly good Freeview reception but lousy (or nonexistent) broadband access. Of course there's always satellite but then that's just another broadcast technology and requries reserved spectrum (albeit not as much of it because you don't have to space channels to prevent adjacent transmitters interfering) just like terrestrial broadcasting does...
Just when we all thought Alan Sokal...
...had ended the whole "Science Wars"...
...nonsense for good it turns out that Social Constructionism is alive and well and living in East Anglia :-)
Re: Shooting in 3D of absolutely nothing and collecting no samples.
"Is this still a success story? How low can you go..."
Technically very clever but no worthwhile content - business as usual for Mr Cameron, that'll the Avatar sequel wrapped then :-)
Re: Simplify the problem - make the first trip one way
"You've been watching space cowboys too many time, terminally ill people.... Ok"
[Shrug] One way or another we're all terminally ill and (at the age of fifty-something) an expensive one-way trip to Mars seems to me like a perfectly reasonable alternative to a few years of active, somewhat cash-strapped retirement followed by an even more expensive long decline in a nursing home...
I wouldn't bet *my* money on $500,000 within 10 years. But considered as an aggressive target to drive the marketing and goad the techies with an unspoken willingness to settle for (say) a cost of a couple of million dollars within 30 years it's a perfectly plausible soundbite...
Was anybody else slightly disapointed to find this wasn't a Playmobil reconstruction?
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