559 posts • joined 26 Mar 2012
Re: Apple's shitty batteries.
> These days no big company is just going to admit to a flawed/faulty product like that.
Nonsense. I deal with big tech firms all the time who are completely quibble-free.
> It sounds like a failsafe has tripped. Multi-cell lithium packs are stuffed with protection circuits, they have to be, and some of those will never recover. Pressure valves on the cells are definitely one-way, main fuse usually too.
Thank you, that sounds like a reasonable explanation -- and utterly unlike the explanation Apple gave at the time. What their Geniuses said was that their batteries are specially designed in such a way that they last with near-max capacity for longer, and a side-effect of that superior engineering is that when they die, they utterly die. Even if that's true (hmm), it still shows an insane preference for catastrophic failure over graceful failure.
Apple's shitty batteries.
> Just because your Dell laptop from 2003 had a dead battery after 2 years doesn't mean an iPhone will. Apple says their current batteries will retain 80% capacity after 1000 charges, i.e., you could completely charge and discharge one of their products every day for 2.73 years and it'd still work fine.
Oh, that's what they say, is it?
My wife's Macbook's battery went from holding about 2.5hr of charge to holding zero charge in the space of a couple of weeks. And I mean literally zero. When combined with Apple's Magsafe adapter, which is designed to unplug easily, what that gives you is a laptop which, if its cable is nudged slightly, instantly dies.
On the other hand, using an ancient work HP laptop with an utterly abused battery, the thing is so crap it only lasts a couple of minutes, i.e., enough time for you to move it to a different room without turning it off.
Now, what Apple actually told me was that their batteries go completely dead instead of just mostly dead by design, because they're better. Really.
And, of course, if you completely charge and discharge one of their products every day for 2.73 years and it doesn't work fine, they -- if you fight long and hard enough to get them to even admit the battery is faulty, which I did, and, my God, that was a slog -- will simply say that it's outside its warranty period and that you therefore need to buy a new battery for 100-odd quid. So, to have any hope of holding them to their published standard, you need to completely charge and discharge one of their products twice a day. Knowing this may be why they don't bother meeting the standard.
This is one of many reasons why I, who was a loyal Apple customer for about fifteen years, will never buy their shit again.
> I can understand why someone might love Apple products but it is staggering that any rational person could defend their stance with regard to consumer rights.
Apple are like Ikea: they have some good products, but, unfortunately, the only way to get those products is to buy them from utter, utter bastards.
No, this reasoning is nonsense. This particular bit of research looks like bollocks, frankly, but that's because it's along the lines of "Chocolate is lethally poisonous if you eat four hundredweight of it in twenty minutes", not because they're selling stuff. You may as well complain that engineers' knowledge of structural mechanics is all suspect because they're obviously just trying to push the price of bridges up.
Re: "there're plenty of people who'd prefer to take the "cruise" approach" @Ledswinger
Well, I was giving one illustrative example of what I think is a far more general selling point. But, that being said....
> If they are valuable enough to justify freighting these people a quarter of the way round the world, why will it be cost effective to put them on an airship that will take about forty hours for this trip?
Because they could be at work for the entire trip, which they couldn't on a jet. That's the point: if you've got Net access and a decent desk to work at, journey time ceases to be a major consideration because it's time at work, not time away from work.
> And if physical presence is essential, what's the point in worrying about a net connected boardroom? The rationale for boardroom net connections is usually so that you can link your meeting rooms via video conferencing without travelling in the first place.
You could, for instance, move a load of top brass across the Atlantic because they need to demo some software in New York, and they could be connected to their devs and other software experts in Sydney and London and Stockholm and Dublin for the entire trip while they work on getting the demo to work as smoothly as possible (or just at all), and of course connected to their main servers that the software uses. That sounds like the sort of thing my firm might do; I'm sure there are dozens of other use cases.
Actually, thinking about this some more, if I or one of my colleagues were between clients for a week or more, and there was the option of a method of transport to the next client's workplace that was cheaper than a plane and enabled us not only to work but to be connected and reachable for the entire trip, I can't imagine my employers not insisting on it.
"there're plenty of people who'd prefer to take the "cruise" approach" @h4rm0ny
> Especially in an age where if it had decent Internet access, you could still work.
Exactly. In this day and age, it doesn't need to be fast, it needs wi-fi. In fact, its going pretty slowly could be an advantage for the international commuting crowd: no need to strap everyone firmly into rigid seats in case of a high-speed crash means you could have mobile meeting rooms with big comfy swivel-chairs. Transporting a firm's entire board from London to New York in a fully Net-connected mobile boardroom is surely a pretty easy sell.
I think these things' big market in the developed world is not so much that they could provide the same crappy service as jets more cheaply as that they could be as luxurious as first-class BA at the price of Easyjet. (I'm talking about luxury in terms of legroom and comfort, not complimentary champagne, obviously.)
Re: All I know is....
The Fires are fantastic machines. For non-tech people (like my wife), Amazon's out-of-the box OS is pretty bloody brilliant too. I rate it higher for zero-learning-curve usability than any other tablet OS I've tried, especially bloody iOS.
> It was a goddamn freaking horrible OS.
Well, it depends what you wanted to do with it. There was a reason other than mere snobbery or tradition that it was the OS of choice for musicians and graphic designers. When Apple said WYSIWYG, they meant it, whereas Windows's implementation was vague and sloppy and therefore useless if you were planning to actually print anything. For multi-track recording, Macs were better, with more stable timing -- sure, your point about virtual memory is correct, but then, to this day, if you're using a DAW on any platform, you're best installing as much RAM as possible and shutting down all other apps while the DAW's running. I recorded an album on an iMac running OS9 back in the days when attempting to do the same thing on a similarly specced PC was laughable. Now, although OSX is no doubt better than OS9, Windows has got SO much better that there is no longer any advantage to a Mac over a PC for recording music. In the 90s, there really was.
It's interesting that Brian Transeau -- one of the most technically cutting-edge musicians on the planet -- still maintains and uses, among his other kit, a Mac running OS9 as part of his studio. I myself (without wanting to imply for one second that I'm in remotely the same league) went to some considerable effort to figure out how to run an OS9 emulator inside OSX, because, for music, there are still occasions when it's useful.
Arguments about the underpinnings of the OS aside, I always preferred the OS9 UI to the Windows of its day. But then I like Windows 8, so clearly have bad taste.
Re: Record profits
> The point is that came about through environmentalist and socialist policies.
Which people in a wealthy society were willing to vote and able to pay for. Or did you think the policies just appeared one day out of nowhere? Environmentalism comes from people in wealthy societies. It does not come from poor people.
> Regulation comes first.
But this is largely impossible, because, until a problem occurs, we have no idea what to regulate. People didn't pour sewage into the Thames because they were gleefully trying to kill fish; they poured sewage into the Thames because they were descended from thousands of generations of people who had been able to shit in rivers without harming the rivers and they simply did not know that their new larger populations would change that dynamic. Once they figured out the problem, they were able to get Joseph Bazalgette to build the greatest sewers on the planet -- a hugely expensive undertaking -- because they were wealthy. A poor society would have just kept pouring shit into the river -- and, indeed, looking round the world, you see that that is what poor soceties do.
> Then industry - constrained by the regulation - finds new ways to make profits.
This is why environmentalist organisations are spending money on sending campaigners out to the developing world to tell piss-poor farmers who are finally dragging themselves out of subsistence lifestyles and total life-or-death dependence on the whims of nature and into modern low-infant-mortality surviving-poor-harvests being-able-to-read-after-sunset civilisation to turn around and go back to their wonderful sustainable lifestyles. Personally, I say that's inhumane. Murderous, even.
Re: Record profits
> You could have made a similar argument 200 years ago - all those mills and factories spewing smog into the London air and dumping waste into the Thames. Gave them great profits and contributed to record wealth in society. Letting raw sewage be dumped into the Thames 'is the best known chance at preventing the deterioration of London'.
Considering that the Thames is now one of the cleanest city rivers in the world and has cormorants and grebes swimming on it, and that London no longer has smog, it's difficult to see what point you're making.
> No. Check your persecution complex.
Well, I have, in fact, commented on Michael Mann's Facebook page before, when he first announced he was suing Mark Steyn. He said something about how awful it was that National Review were setting their lawyers on him and I pointed out that they were in fact employing their lawyers to defend themselves against his legal action. I also stated that he should feel free to sue National Review if he wanted, but that he realistically needed to expect that their lawyers would therefore mount a defence. That's all. I didn't say a thing about climate and didn't criticise his science. For that one comment, he permanently banned me from his page. The only people he's interested in conversing with are sycophants and he regards everyone else as an attacker.
> And rightly so, as you are opposing what (admittedly imperfect) evidence there is based on nothing but personal incredulity.
Well, firstly, calling the evidence "imperfect", as you just did, will have Michael Mann and his cronies calling you an "anti-science" "denier" etc etc. Seriously, go to his Facebook page and try it. He's quite absurdly thin-skinned and paranoid.
Secondly, Judith Curry has more reasons for disagreeing with him than personal incredulity.
And I'll say this yet again: I agree with Feynman that you can't get results out of models. Data, yes; results, no. Feynman was not God and it's certainly OK and probably sometimes even right to disagree with him, but agreeing with him is not anti-science and is not mere personal incredulity; it is an informed and principled position.
Re: Register author in climate change SHOCKER
For the last few years, every single "extreme" weather event has been presented to us as proof that AGW is definitely happening and we have been told that such events are going to become more and more frequent. Two years ago, when we had a dry Winter in the UK, we were told that exceptionally dry Winters and drought conditions were to become the new norm, because Climate Change. This year, we are being told that exceptionally wet Winters and disastrous flooding are to become the new norm, because Climate Change. A lot of this comes from the media and politicians, yes, but a lot of it comes from climatologists too.
So it is certainly valid and interesting news reporting to show that a group of proper climatologists have declared, based on actual research, that this is a myth. That there may be other results in their paper which are not being analysed in the article doesn't change that.
Well, first of all, according to the Precautionary Principle, we shouldn't use the Precautionary Principle, just in case.
That aside, let's say, for the sake of argument, that the very worst predictions of the AGW alarmists are correct and that we therefore need to cut pollution as much and as soon as we possibly can. How do we do that?
Well, handily enough, an absolutely superb experiment was conducted on this matter. They took a whole continent and split it down the middle -- even cutting a country in half, to minimise ethnic or cultural differences that might have influenced the experiment -- and tried (broadly) market capitalism on one side and (broadly) state socialism on the other. After half a century, we were able to observe pollution and environmental damage on each side. And what did we find?
Well, what we found was that socialism utterly fucks the environment. Environmentalism, it turns out, is a luxury good, which people are willing -- even eager -- to spend money on when they have surplus wealth, whilst people without wealth are perfectly happy to screw the environment to bring the cost of living down a penny or two. So what we need, if we want to cut pollution as much as we possibly can, is as wealthy a society as possible. So, to answer your rhetorical question:
> And in 2040 when the chairmen of Shell, BP, Exxon, etc. look at their grandchildren's deteriorating world, will they look back and console themselves with "Ah, but in 2023 we had *record* profits!"
Those record profits -- which both reflect and contribute to record wealth in society -- are the best known chance at preventing the deterioration of the world.
Yet environmentalists are all socialists for some reason. Go figure.
> a post-apocalyptic environmental anthem about how to escape global warming and sea level rise
That actually makes as much sense as the song's other interpretation, in which the submarine is obviously a coffin, because Paul is dead.
> One of the reasons I generally pay little attention to populist media ...
But it's not just the populist media. It's a bunch of climatologists too. That's the problem. Your summary of the state of knowledge today -- "right now, nobody actually knows ... no hard and fast evidence in either direction" -- is spot on, but voicing it will have Michael Mann and his cronies calling you an "anti-science" "denier" and, if you're an actual scientist, diligently lobbying scientific journals to stop them publishing your papers and even putting pressure on your employers to sack you.
The problem is not the media misrepresenting science. The problem, sadly, is a bunch of politically motivated scientists living in an echo chamber.
I know I've said this before, but....
> neither Apple nor Google are directly responsible for the gross piss taking that is going on with in-app purchases
Bollocks. The root cause of this problem was cracked by the PC industry yonks ago: how on Earth do we let two people use the same computer without accessing each other's data? User accounts. Easy. And Apple have been criticised for not having user accounts in iOS since the launch of the iPad yet have consistently refused to consider them. Why? Because they don't want you to share an iPad with your family. They want you to buy one iPad per family member. The various inconveniences caused by the lack of user accounts are part of their business plan. They don't want to solve the problem of in-app purchases by upgrading their OS to include a basic 1990s feature. They want in-app purchases to be such a risk and annoyance that you solve the problem by buying a couple more iPads.
Sorry, Lewis, but this is plain wrong:
> This powerful negative feedback is not included in today's climate models, so they are predicting a warmer future than can be expected in reality.
That conclusion would only follow if this were the only mechanism not included in today's models. But we keep discovering more of them, and there are lots of others, quite probably hundreds, that we still haven't discovered. So maybe you're right, or maybe the IPCC's models are drastically understating the problem, or maybe their predictions are correct by sheer fluke. What we can say for sure is that there are lots of mechanisms in the real climate that aren't modelled in any current climate models.
So allow me to reword:
This powerful negative feedback and lots of other influences are not included in today's climate models, so we should take any predictions based on said models with a huge sack of salt.
Well, perhaps not all the tactics.
> online criminals have also been watching and should soon be able to copy the agency's invasive surveillance tactics
Criminals are going to persuade Congress to force telcos to hand them all our data? Well, I suppose it's worth a try.
Re: "That targeted approach"@ Squander Two
Too kind, sir.
"That targeted approach"
> That "targeted" approach however, requires a target selection and resource for _EACH_ and _EVERY_ target. That is finite resource. Even NSA cannot hack everyone abroad. Compared to that - the ongoing attack on all local targets under jurisdiction is a constant resource. Different ball game altogether.
Exactly. He's obfuscating the controversy by claiming that it's about the NSA. It isn't. It's about Congress and the White House.
I'm a strong supporter of spying agencies breaking the law -- I'd rather they break laws than that laws be changed to allow spying, as the latter leads to a ridiculous petty police state, with, for instance, local authorities legally spying on parents to check they're in the right cachement area for their kids' school. If what they're doing is illegal and they can get in trouble if caught, that's a very sensible and effective check on their behaviour: they only do stuff if it's worth that risk. What Congress and the White House did was remove that check -- in the Land of Checks & Balances, no less. Ha!
Also, if the spies are breaking the law, their targets are allowed to avoid them. Sure, the NSA can hack a server in Sweden, but the owners of that Swedish server are allowed to stop the hack if they detect it, they're allowed to upgrade their security whenever they want, they're allowed to install a new server without the same vulnerabilities, forcing the NSA to go to the effort of hacking all over again. Again, that effort is a check on their behaviour. I prefer that to the current US system, where the owners of the servers are legally obliged to give a direct feed of all their data to the NSA, no hacking required.
A lot of IT-illiterate members of the public aren't seeing these distinctions, which is fair enough, but I hardly think this bastard is one of them. He's just lying about what the controversy is.
I don't think WinPho supports dual SIMs.
It's about to, Microsoft have just announced.
Re: I know this one.
> correlation is the weakest evidence there is.
Not as weak as a total lack of correlation, surely?
Re: Defensive Execs & Lost Marketing
> It doesn't matter what you call your company if your offerings are right.
There's a handyman in my area whose firm was, until recently, called "Jim'll Fix It".
Re: 20,000 published out of 300,000 projects
I'm quite a good cook, but I would still buy a book called "Cook Like An Idiot". And watch the TV spin-off.
I have mixed feelings about the volume control. On the one hand, yes, obviously. But on the other, my iPad recently suddenly started blaring at me when it was muted, because an app's dev had assigned certain sounds as notifications instead of sounds (or something) and it took me bloody ages to figure out how to stop it (had to turn down the ringing volume, when it has no phone so shouldn't be doing any bloody ringing. Ridiculous). I also remember my old Symbian Nokias would occasionally make loud noises when muted too, I think if a calendar alarm went off.
So I think, even if they do introduce context-sensitive volume controls, I'd still like the option of a master volume control too. Especially a master mute.
The problem Microsoft face is that Apple have done such a great job of persuading tech journalists to review everything from the point of view of "How much like an iPhone is this?" I've seen so many reviews which simply claim flat-out that WP has no notifications at all, just because it doesn't have a copy of Apple's notifications system. If MS can introduce an Apple-style second-rate notifications system that can be turned off, they get to stop at least one stupid aspect of negative reviews while we users still get to keep the far superior tiles system.
Re: Stuck in the doldrums...
Can't believe some twonk downvoted you for that. Where's the controversial bit?
Overheard at work.
"What's brown and looks like a stick?"
Re: The difference between laws and constitutions.
> As opposed to being "elected" from a poll of clueless (and therefore inoffensive) candidates bankrolled by $BIG_CORPORATION?
Well, my mother has stood for Parliament five times, and I can assure you this is just bollocks. She wouldn't even make this claim about her opponents. It's more true in the US, sadly, but in the UK, it's surprisingly easy to stand as an MP. My own MP is Sylvia Hermon, an independent who can and does thrash the major parties' candidates. The Conservatives are even beginning -- albeit way too tentatively -- to experiment with open primaries; I believe two MPs were chosen that way at the last election, which may not be many but is two more than at the previous election, demonstrating that the current move is away from, not towards, the situation you describe.
> Sir Winston was unelected, rather unlike his Teutonic counterpart
Well, firstly, you're conflating the election of an MP with the appointment of a Prime Minister -- and at a time of threatened invasion, no less. Churchill was elected as an MP, repeatedly. Furthermore, when he started his parliamentary career, the rule was still in place that you had to immediately stand in a by-election when you were moved from the backbenches to the Cabinet, so he was elected not only as an MP but specifically as a Cabinet minister, repeatedly. At the outbreak of war, our elected MPs chose from among their number the man who they thought was most likely to win the war -- thereby using the powers and responsibilities entrusted to them by their electorate, which is exactly what's supposed to happen in a democracy. As soon as the war was over, they held a General Election. All pretty bloody democratic.
Secondly, no, Hitler wasn't elected, although he did come to power in a democracy. He came second in the 1932 presidential election, then orchestrated a non-military coup. Try researching things rather than just regurgitating whatever you heard down the pub.
> I'll take unelected any day
Well, I hope you get what you want. But, please, not in my country.
Scrapping roaming doesn't necessarily mean allowing the use of bundled minutes -- although Three's implementation does. But, yes, I believe (and hope) that is Neelie's eventual goal. It is rather the point of a single market, after all.
"the foreign cellco"
You mean O2 FR, O2 DE, O2 ES or O2 IT?
> The article, rather snidely, mentions that the Commissioner is 'unelected'. Well, yes. Just like regulators all over the place - OfCom, OfGen, OfSted and all the other Of* things you can think of (well, nearly all of them).
Here's the difference. OfCom, OfGen, OfSted, etc are subordinate to a democratically elected government, obeying and enforcing rules and laws set by a democratically elected government. The EC sets the rules and laws itself and is subordinate to no elected body. It's quite an important difference.
The difference between laws and constitutions.
The EU regularly make good decisions, and I for one like Neelie. But the fact is that she is unelected. It's great that she's doing good, but, if she were doing bad, as some Commissioners sometimes do, what would we do about it? Vote her out? Can't. And that is a problem.
Tony Benn has repeatedly made the point that an MP has no power of their own; they are lent power by their constituents for the duration of their term in office. So, even if everything the EU does is completely wonderful, no MP or British Government actually has the right to abbrogate any of their powers to the EU, because they're not their powers. This issue would be completely resolved by a referendum, of course, but our lords and masters aren't too keen on the idea for some reason.
Re: Funny thing is
In Lindau, Germany, you can just sit at a cafe and your mobile will get a new "Welcome to" message every couple of minutes as it picks up signals from three different countries.
> How sweet that you naively believe that this is the case. Western countries love to think that they can implement a solution that always works, but I guarantee you that the criminals will find a way around the "problem" and will still be able to supply the product, and companies will buy that product and claim it is still ethical because it passed the testing process.
Gosh, how amazingly clever of you to work that out. Of course, that reasoning applies to both methods, so, all other things being equal, the Intel/Apple method is still cheaper than the Dodd-Frank method. Except that all other things aren't equal: as explained in the article, the Intel/Apple method (chemical analysis) is also more effective and difficult to fool than the Dodd-Frank method (certification). So, unless, you were referring to some third method that you prefer but have neglected to mention, what was your fucking point, exactly?
Not sure you read the article. With the enactment of Dodd-Frank, the Intel/Apple method is now the cheapest method.
Re: “don’t shoot”
Why, thank you both for your useful and informative answers. That's been bugging me for ages.
Still not convinced that the police use the words in everyday conversation, mind you. Hollywood is stupid.
Re: “don’t shoot”
On a related note, something that bothers me about films and TV is the Hollywood idea that everyone in the police and military says "Affirmative" and "Negative" instead of "Yes" and "No", when "Yes" and "No" sound completely unmistakably different whilst "Affirmative" and "Negative" have the same ending and so could easily be confused with a bit of radio static or background noise.
Re: “don’t shoot”
Yes: "Stand down."
When I first got a mobile phone back in the mid-Nineties, I forced myself to dial my friend's numbers in full rather than use the phone's memory, so that I would actually remember their numbers, which was handy when I was using a different phone. But, for that to be practical, you really need decent old-fashioned buttons, so you can just unlock the phone and start dialling. I got out of the habit, and now only know my wife's number -- and that only because she hasn't changed it since those days.
Re: @ Anonymous Coward
And, if they did care, so what? The trademark was diluted, as a matter of law, regardless of any salesperson's opinion.
Re: Excuse me but is this Torygraph?
I agree absolutely about quangos and the other means the British Government has developed to bypass democracy of late (fake charities are the worst, I think), but the fact remains that the Chancellor is subject to election and no EC Commissioner is. You keep claiming that an election and a total lack of an election are basically the same amount of democracy. They're not.
Re: Old Neelie is good for a laugh!
> European Parliament is one of the most democratic institutions in the modern world.
Maybe, but it's not a parliament; it's an assembly. Parliaments have legislative power; the EU "Parliament" exists in a merely advisory capacity to the Commission. So, while the body may be democratic, it's subordinate to an undemocratic body. Which makes the democracy a fig-leaf.
"If you don't like a topic or activity, then don't go to that site."
I don't like raping children. So, if I personally don't go to child porn sites, problem solved, right?
Re: Excuse me but is this Torygraph?
> as elected as say the Chancellor of the Exchequer is to his position.
This is half disingenuous and half untrue. The Chancellor holds two positions: Chancellor and MP. As an MP, he can be gotten rid of by the electorate, which no EC Commissioner can. As Chancellor, he cannot directly be ousted by the electorate, but, usually, he was either Chancellor or Shadow Chancellor during the last General Election -- and, if he wasn't, he will be for the next one -- when a large part of the electorate's reason for voting boils down to which pair of loons they prefer as PM and Chancellor. And no EC Commissioner faces that level of democracy either.
I would agree, however, that there is not as much of a gap between the levels of democratic accountability of the Chancellor and a Commissioner as there should be, but the solution to that is not to conclude that the EU must therefore be perfectly democratic enough but to increase the democratic accountability of the British Cabinet. (It used to be the case that, when an MP was appointed to the Cabinet, they had to immediately stand for reelection in their constituency, which gave voters the option of saying that a politician was a good MP but not Government material. Bringing back this rule would solve a lot of Britain's problems, in my opinion.)
Re: DJV Old Neelie is good for a laugh!
Look, I oppose the EU in principle on the grounds of democracy, but that doesn't mean that every single person who ever works for them is a totalitarian bureaucratic bastard. It's a shame that Neelie isn't elected, but, if she were, I'd vote for her.
It is completely immaterial whether exercise is a good antidepressant. School PE lessons are a depressant.
Re: Oh really?
Well, this is the problem with the absurd insistence that you can't be a teacher without a teaching degree, which should be seen for the teachers' unions' protectionism it is and abolished. If Stephen Hawking applied for a physics teaching job at a British school, they wouldn't even interview him, because he's not qualified. Allow people who are really good at stuff to teach stuff, and then the schools would simply be able to hire actual programmers to teach programming. This should not be a revolutionary idea.
> 1: Daily PE rather than weekly, with no BS excuses to get out of it.
Right, so you want to make sure the kids who are reckless enough to allow their intelligence to show get a daily session of institutionalised bullying. And, somehow, this will improve educational standards. Because that's what happens: if you punch someone every time they get an A, they get more As, right?
And don't give me any of that shit about ensuring children keep fit or tackling obesity. If schools had the remotest interest in either, they wouldn't devote so much effort to conditioning children to associate physical exercise with torture and humiliation. Twenty-five years later, the reason I and millions of others avoid exercise and sport like the plague is that we were taught to at school.
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