36 posts • joined 4 May 2012
It will be rolled out to all sorts of people. First it will go to the Police. Then it will go to the DVLA. Then it will go to the exchequer.
"Your licence to use UKROADS has expired - please contact a service representative. Your vehicle has gone into reduced functionality mode"...
THEN they'll sell it to car makers and insurance underwriters.
There ought to be a way
My view is this; Microsoft ought to repair/replace the damaged consoles or - at the very least - provide a way to. True it's not "their fault", but it won't cost them them to make it right and really i'd expect there to be some way to rescue a situation such as this. It may be as simple as altering some settings on the accounts of the people the Xboxes are trying to contact.
Of course. What you really want is a recovery partition on the xbox that can be used to restore it to factory defaults if you (for example) power it on whilst holding down the power button (or whatever).
You don't have to buy one..
The logic here is simple. If you don't think the price of your contract is reasonable, don't bother with it. Nobody is forcing you to go with X operator. Find one cheaper, if you're not happy with the price you're paying.
To be honest. I've just been issued with an iPhone at work. I can't say I like it all that much. My previous blackberry was better at some stuff, my Android is better at almost everything. I think the reasons why Apple are suddenly having their day in the sun have more to do with fashion than it does to do with actual benefits of the devices. And fashions change.
Apple could lose popularity overnight if something really unfortunate happened. It's not especially likely, though. But imagine if - for example - there was a huge bruhaha over some activity they were involved in. Or someone influencial just decided something else was cooler now and all the hipsters were saying "Apple is SO 2013.. I've got an XYZ now. Once you've had that - you won't go back".
Maybe a system that automatically mutes the on-board bluetooth handsfree when the handbrake is released?
I know it drives me up the wall when people call me when I am driving and try to get me to carry out technical support whilst i'm negotiation rush-hour traffic on the M6. Granted, i'm hands-free so it is legal but I know I miss stuff as a result of it, so I keep telling people I can't help them. Usually I get the answer "Well, I appreciate that... But can you just tell me.....". Telling them to F*ck off because they're endangering my life and should be talking to the HD in any event would be quite satisfying, but probably not a good career move.
I think I might start trying to plan things so I pull into services or a layby at conference times and ignoring imcoming calls until I find somewhere to stop and call them back.
Is it just me, or is asking an Aspergers sufferer to stand up in front of all his colleagues and tell that so grossly stupid that in this day and age it would be hard not to see it as workplace bullying?
On the recession
Yeah. It's easy to blame the bankers for the recession.
Fact is, though. We're all to blame (except me, I don't buy stuff on tick). Through all the good years I used to hear about people buying motorcycles, TVs and all sorts of stuff on cheap credit. Not once did I hear anyone say "No. I won't have that Honda Fireblade, it would be bad for the economy".
The Bankers merely did what anyone would have done, given their opportunity.
He could be trying to distress the stock. You know ditch it on the market, and slag off the company. News of this seeps out, people under-value Apple and he can then buy it back for less than he sold it for a short while before. Give it a short period until the news is old news and the stock goes back up...
Or, maybe, he knows something the rest of us don't about the markets, Apple or both.
Or, maybe, the stress has got to him and he's gone a bit Colonel Kurtz.
Or, maybe, he's just being dramatic about a stock he feels has reached a plateux, so he's going to unload it as one usually would.
Why did reading that article remind me of the misspent youth reading "Your Sinclair?"
Possibly because of the "Totally Hatstand" comment, actually.
For my money, it's just too pricey. Never mind the whole "does it save you money in the long-run" bit (and it may well do, on BIK tax), but it's just too darned expensive for what it is in terms of initial outlay. I simply don't see many people hazarding 40-odd thousands on a small Volvo Estate. It needs to be ten grand cheaper, at least.
Sure. I'd love one, but 44k? Do me a lemon.
Re: If I don't need ...
As a matter of fact, yes, there is something similar and cheaper. The Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4 is pretty similar (although not plug-in). And is a lot cheaper. The Citroen DS5 is similar, too.
It would be interesting...
What if the Russian airliner DID take off with Snowden on board, fly over the US of A?
By "Forced Down" I take you you mean "Threatened with shoot-down if they didn't land at a base nominated by the USAF". Which is fine. Until the airliner captain responds "No... I can't land there.... I have orders... And runway is too short....I would be violating the rights of my passengers by exposing them to arrest and transfer to git'mo".
THEN what? - do you order the F16 jock to shoot down an airliner full of a mix of Russian & Chinese Businessmen and international journalists? OR do you let the Airliner carry on it's merry way, happilly ignoring the symbols of US power (IE the fighter jets) like they don't actually matter because you've got an stroppy nerd on board?
Why the Vitriol?
So Woz has the stronger technical skills, and Steve had the stronger business sense? - in which case it makes sense to break it up the way they did. Why on earth would you get Woz to invest his time in doing something Steve is better at if all you get in return in freeing up Steve's time to do something Woz is better at? People seem to see this as the clever businessman getting rich on the genius of the engineer. But you could equally well see it as the engineer getting the businessman to sell his product for him.
And why do people slag off marketting skills? Frankly you can make the best product in the bloody world, cheaply enough to sell for the price of a cup of tea. If nobody knows about it and it's benefits, you're not going to sell many. People don't buy the "best" product - they buy the one they feel best about. Betamax was/is technically superior to VHS in many ways. But VHS was better marketted, became slightly more popular, and then used that popularity to get first dibs on top feature films and use it's volume sales to undercut Betamax. I recall in the past buying AMD chips and paying must less than i'd pay for the intel 486. Other people insisted on buying only "genuine" intel chips, but were totally incapable of explaining why they were supposed to be better, much less demonstrating that they were.
As regard IP protection - It costs money to set up a business. If you're just going to let someone else skip the RND phase by copying your design wholesale, then you've done all the work only to end up at an immediate competative disadvantage as you need to recoup RnD costs, and they don't. So they can undercut you....
Going back to the article. Yep. Creative personality types are often "difficult", if not actually downright disfunctional. This is generally true (it's where the phrase "Artistic Temperament" comes from - it's extra true of creative technical people for some reason. Not really news. Trust me, i've worked with some people who would wow you with their techical genius one moment, and the next moment say or do something so lamentably stupid that you'd want to weep or cringe with contact embarissment - some just couldn't talk to people outside of IT - especially people of the oppositve sex.
The one that annoys me...
Is "What PC should I buy"?
How the heck should I know - do you seriously imagine I get to play with every PC on the market, and oddly enough know exactly which software you'll run for the next decade? They always look a touch askance when I say to go to Tesco and buy the most expensive one they can afford by a brand they recognise for computers (IE Dell, HP, Lenovo etc). But for me that's good advice. Tesco can stack them high and sell them cheap, you can march back in with it if it doesn't work, and if you stick to major brands you're unlikely to hit a major stinker.
Most people are happy with this when explained to them, but some people them start getting out PC magazines and asking of the 3200mhz processor is more of a benefit than the 2800mhz processor with more RAM. Or if the Nvidia GFX card is better than the ATI one. Well, I neither know nor care so I usually say "I really couldn't say without testing them, and we're not in a position to do that". Which is the truth. Generally I'd go for the extra memory of clock cycles (and recommend an SSD if possible), but that's about as far as I'd stick my neck out as I have no way of knowing if a Laptop I've never seen is "a good one", or not.
The other one is get is people clearly trying to get me to give them (and therefore endorse) a specific answer they want. They'll say to me "Isn't the Advent laptop better value as it's got more megahertz than the Dell??". "To be honest, I've never had a good experience with Advent..." "Oh, but would it be okay?" "Dunno - I wouldn't buy one. I'd spend the extra and get the Dell". "hmmm. But the Advent is cheaper and it's a better spec..." "Up to a point - it's a lower-quality machine. And it's got a magnetic drive, not an SSD - so I'd buy the Dell". "But would the Advent be *okay*?". "Probably, but if it were my money I'd spend the extra and get the Dell...". "But we use Dells at work. One of them broke last year... So I don't think Dell's ARE good".. It's really hard at this point not to grab them by the lapels, shake then and shout "Why the F*CK did you ask my advice, if you're going to F*cking argue with every word I say and try to get me to change it to what you wanted to hear???"
I do struggle
To see what Summly does that other services don't. Note that it launched in November, and is bought in March. So it's really been operating for around five months, which is surely too short a time to tell if it's a go-er or not. Not really heard people gasping over it in the way that they did over, for example, Angry Birds.
In fact the only notable thing about it is that it was made my a 17 year old, and sold to Yahoo for a vast sum whilst still unproven. And they immediately shut it down......
Call me cynical
But I wonder how many of the people wingeing about "ugly" BT boxes actually also whine about how poor their broadband is?
I do agree, though, that BT could paint them in a selection of colours to make them stand out less. Stone grey for a street corner. Green for a park - that kind of thing. How hard could it be?
Re: Apples to Oranges.
Well, because share value is determined byexpected value increases. Doesn't matter if you have an insane business plan or if you will be out of business in six months (at least, not directly). As long as your next price is higher than your current one, people will make money.
Oil isnt sexy or clever. Tablets are. But if apple goes out of Favour or fashion. Watch the price burn...
I can see both sides...
To be perfectly honest, part of me is having problems caring about this. I generally buy a new handset when my contract runs out. I use it until it next runs out, and get another handset. Which means I get one of the top handsets every 18 months or so, and forget about it the rest of the time. And I'm perfectly happy to do this. I don't want to jailbreak the phone or install cyanogenmod on it because this will wreck the warranty. I know their terms when I sign up, and I accept them. I can see that the operator is letting me walk away with an expensive bit of hardware, and they'll make their money back (plus more) over the life of the contract. At the end of the contract the handset is usually dated, quite worn and battered and I'm getting a new one so I just wipe it, stick it in a drawer as a spare and forget it "Well done, oh good and assiduous servant" and all that.
At the end of the day I'm buying a branded phone on specific terms and I'm perfectly at liberty to either take the deal, or leave it. I don't see why the operator ought to be compelled to offer an unlocking service to me so I can escape their contract, or sell the phone as anything other than what I bought it as - a branded phone. Yes I guess at the end of the contact it is nice if they help you unlock it as it's now fully paid-for and your own property. But if that's not a term of the contract then isn't it a bit like buying a car, and walking into the dealership 3 years after you buy it expecting them to fit a stereo for free?
I recall years ago being lectured on how great a measure of fitness BMI actually is (by someone who really should know better). I think I won the argument by pointing out that it's just a ratio of Height to Body Mass. Mike Tyson is obese, according to BMI's reckoning, but....... *you* tell him that.
Seriously. It's all ballcocks. Karen definately doesn't need to lose weight, but then again there is no reason to think she knows any more about weight control than she does about how to become Tall, Redheaded, or Scottish.
Correct me if I am wrong....
But the whole bloody point of the article was to be lighthearted, and have a bit of a pop at Apple maybe. Saying that you don't like the way it is written is a bit like complaining that the spaceships in Star Trek don't conform to neutonian physics. Yes, you're correct, but this is irrelevant. The piece was written for entertainment value as much as it was for technical accuracy.
I never waste time wondering why CEOs, Bankers or Footballers are paid so much. I don't run a company, I have appauling maths and i'm shit at football. Therefore none of the above really effect me very much.
But I will say this. Apple do seem to have lost their trademark surefootedness as of late. At the moment most of the products being launched were probably largely instigated under Steve Job's regieme. But that won't be true for much longer, and it will be interesting to see how much the company changes with a new person at the helm. Certainly the appearance of the iPad mini could indictate that someone, somewhere thinks differently from Steve Jobs. They may be right, they may be wrong. But Apple are a unique company, a lot of their value is in fashionability and brand image. It would not be hard to cock it up so badly that they become a pariah brand. However it would be very hard to do as good a job of reading the writing the market as Steve Jobs did.
In the Real World.
To be honest, I think educators in code aim for the best possible standard, and hope to actually get something that isn't too bad.
My big thing is to put comments in *plain language* - explaining not just what the code does (which is usually fairly easy to work out) but why it's doing it, why it's doing it that way, and helpful information.
Copy Date to DT variable - the legacy system will only accept 2 character field tags, but "Date" is used a lot in the system so cannot be renamed. DT is only intended for use in this transation. J Bloggs 01/02/2012
Copy Date > DT
Total bugbear of mine - keeping endless piles of crap. Ending up with 99percent of it totally useless, but robbing you of so much space. Is it really worth not having a backbedroom and having a living room that looks like the set of "steptoe and son" so that just ONCE in 20 years you might have that piece of kit you really need in a box somewhere... that you just can't find... so you go out and buy a new one. Then find the old one a week later... When you REALLY don't need it since you now have a newer one, but now you know where it is you keep it as a "spare".... Usually you waste so much time looking for the one you know you've got somewhere (and pray still works!) it would have been quicker just to go out and buy a new one that you KNOW still works!
All that said. Yup. I do it, too.
You can sign your own P45...
I always drink moderately at these events. It's just not worth the risk.
Yeah, there are tales of people giving it large and senior managers respecting them for it. But for every one of those there are thousands of tales of people who gave it large and getting sacked for professional misconduct (or whatever) the following day.
You can argue about specs and design all you want. At the end of the day people don't work that way. What people do is decide what they want, and then look for the arguments to back up that decision.
It really doesn't matter which is the "better" machine because 90-odd percent of the purchasers won't understand or care about that, really. What they want is the "top" machine. The one people gush about, the stylish one, the one that was on the news.
Apple know this. And make nice products that are simple to use and stylish and product lines that are simple to understand. Microsoft have stuffed up the surface - badly. The product is too fragmented. In their efforts to be "all things to all people" they've crashed down between two stools and left everyone confused.
Nah. This time next year it will be in the Bargain bins. What we needed from them was a cheap product, that did something the competition doesn't, and was simple to understand for the mass market. We didn't get it - it's game-over before anyone has even inserted the first coin.
There is a momentary green flicker around the edge of the screen? Maybe i've missed something, but this doesn't sound like the kind of thing i'd worry about. Unless it's a symptom of incipient failure, of course.
To be honest, I bought a HTC in April and I wish I hadn't. The Wi-Fi doesn't work and O2 tell me I can take it back to them and they'll send it away. And - maybe - it'll be fixed. Or maybe it won't. And, no, they don't know when it will come back. And, no, they can't offer me a loan phone as it's got a micro sim. Oh, but they can rent one to me for a lot of money and even more money if it comes back broken/scratched. And - no - the insurance I pay extra for doens't help me out at all. I could claim on it and - perhaps - they might fix it. Or they might not. And it's 25 quid to find out. OH, and here is a bill for the extra wireless you've used whilst your wifi isn't working.
SO I wish I'd bought an Apple iPhone. At least I might have half a chance of getting it sorted. HTC have had their day, i'll never buy another one of their handsets after this debacle.
Yeah. everyone should pay a subscription to a newspaper they don't want, to keep it in circulation. Because there is something special about it. Frankly. If this is the best their editor can come up with, then i'm not surprised they're going down. Make money either by selling advertising space, or selling access to the site, or both. That's what everyone else does.
Don't ask me to pay extra for my broadband, just because your paper sucks too badly to survive.
Yep. Absolutely. And they can both afford the lawyers, so I bet it plays on for so long that it becomes irrelevent.
I get the distinct impression that it's more above excluding a rival from a market place whilst you gain a dominant position. So if you can keep it going for years, you can ensure they "win" long after "winning" has become completely immaterial.
Reminds me rather of the whole "Internet Explorer Vs Netscape Navigator" debacle. The only people who did well out of that were the Lawyers. And I suspect the same will happen here. Eventually.
Is it just me?
Or has the definition of what is patentable become somewhat elastic as of late?
Seems to me that it used to be that you could patent a particular way of doing something, but not the whole concept of doing the job in the first place. Yes, maybe Samsung's phone *does* look quite a lot like an iPhone and maybe it does do a similar job in a similar way. But the same could also be said of an Astra and a Focus (cars) they're similar because they do the same job, 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.
Of course this would be defamation (specifically, under UK law it would be Libel). But's that's whole point - you'd have to go to court and dispute and present arguments & evidence - which is what they want you to do. OR just not say anything, at which point you'll find it harder to subsequently deny it. Not a nice tactic, nonetheless.
As regards the second amendment thing. Could you present an argument that anyone who wishes to keep a gun has volunteered for the Militia? ;-)
I have to say I can understand someone wanting a sporting gun, or a gun for pest control, or a historical weapon, or even a weapon for self-defence. Not quite sure why someone in civilian life needs to own a range of AK-47s or a Bazooka, though.
When I was at school (20 years ago!) the teaching in "computer science" consisted of one old fart Maths Teacher who'd done a few days on a training course with RM in order to bolster his salary before retiring to his final salary pension scheme.... It was a totally worthless non-effort on their part just to tick a box and say "yes, we do computers".
My partner is a teacher in a shiny, new academy. I'd like to tell you that things are much better today, but they really aren't. It's still the same old crap about writing/saving files in excel/corel draw etc & last time I heard they're still using floppy disks for this... The teachers drone and stutter their way through a sylabus that is both totally out-of-date and poorly concieved and the kids who "have it" lose interest as it's so spirit-crushingly boring to them and those who don't just muck about as they don't see the value. They go at the pace of the slowest pupil in the "mixed ability" class (who - unfortunately - often turns out to be the one supposed to be teaching it!), and everyone else just gets bored. If someone does actually add anything else to their program whilst they're waiting for the rest of the class to catch up they get castigated for "mucking about" (I know, i've been there).
Frankly they could have torn the whole experience out of a book entitled "How to demotivate, frustrate and disenfranchise people from the learning process".
It IS rubbish
Sorry - but Dr Who was good when re-launched with Chris Ecclestone, great with David Tennant. But with Matt Smith - it's a shadow of it's former self. I don't think it's just Matt Smith, though, I think the writers and producers are more used to doing Eastenders than Sci Fi and the whole thing has a "designed by a committee" feel to it.
It was much better before the show started to believe it's own publicity and vanished up it's own chuff, quite frankly,.
Why do people insist on going to analogies - when all they really need to do is find a simple explanation? - Well it's usually because someone wants to have "involvement" in IT without actually needing to understand any of it.
Well, I don't like what Megaupload was facilitating - people should be rewarded for their efforts and all and if you don't think something is worth paying for, then you have the perfect right NOT to buy it - not the perfect right to steal it. Saying that, copyrighted material is not the only thing that Megaupload was supplying. Arguably you might just as well shut down a Storage company as - sometimes - people use storage lockers to store stuff they don't want traced back to them (IE, stolen stuff).
I do find it hard to credit that the best approach the NZ police could some up with was landing a *helicopter* in the garden. I mean this isn't really a recognised steath tactic. is it? - They're bloody noisy things and kinda hard to miss coming. If I am honest with the amount of paperwork snafus going on it almost (ALMOST!) as if someone, somewhere knew they had to do as instructed but felt very strongly that this isn't what their team(s) and the international agreements should be used for - they're supposed to stop people blowing up airliners - not stop them uploading a dodgy copy of "Batman Forever" against the will of the foreigh Millionaire - Maybe this is why so many "mistakes" have been made in the paperwork that look set to derail the process?
I see what's going on.
MS are looking at Apple and seeing somone who produces their own hardware and software and sells them together, to great benefit & profit and are trying to move in the same direction themselves. I understand that - although I suspect that if they plan to try to topple the iPad they're going to need something pretty special to do this.
I can see what they're trying to achieve. I just don't think they're going to manage it. Get the slate to market, working well without compromise, for £200 as a loss-leader to establish a user base and - maybe - they'll have a chance. But make is a straight choice between an iPad or a Surface at the same price and they've got no chance. Of course the problem with the "budget" approach is that Android already has this covered. So maybe they should just stick to the "PC and Laptop" market (ie what they are (were?) actually GOOD at!).
But I still think Ubuntu would be a lot more popular if people would only try it. I've been using it for around a month on an old HP notebook - it's fine. Everything works, and works well, and it's free and there are applications available for it to do almost everything you'd want to do!
Models and prototypes blowing up is almost what they're *for*. The fact is that you don't design a perfect machine right from the drawing board. So you test it at every stage, sometimes on the bench, sometimes with models and you find the mistakes/challenges/questions in the design.Sometimes something won't work, sometimes it will suggest methods of improvement, sometimes it will go bang, Certainly it's better than un unmanned model blows up now than a manned mission to Mars in front of the world's press in ten years time.
I would say to any congressman planning use this development stage as an excuse to slash NASA funding to ask themselves how they'd feel if they got on an airliner and a rep from boeing said "We've never flown this design before, but we're pretty sure it'll work okay. Here is your parachute and asbestos underwear, just in case".
Possibly quite a clever move, actually. It's not fraud, but involving the team sounds impressive. Hremit extendsfraud, and doesn't cover incompetence. So the council can honestly say 'its been investigated, and the staff involved cleared of any wrongdoing'. Ie its a textbook case of answering a question you wish you had been asked 'are we dishonest' in order to avoid answering the question you should be asked 'are we competent'.
Since most companies consider PCs to be - essentially - a comodity these days I don't think the brand is as important as it used to be. That said if you pitched them to management they'll probably be more confident of signing off they were hearing "IBM" or "HP" or "Dell". But if you can say that Acer is significantly cheaper then they may just go for it. I recall a time (long ago) when "Dell" was the minority, upstart left-field choice - which proves it can be done.
I'd be perfectly happy to be issued with an Acer at work. I've had one for years at home, and i'm happy enough with them.