* Posts by wikkity

252 posts • joined 25 Feb 2013

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IT knowledge is as important as Maths, says UK.gov

wikkity
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RE: offered a programming club

Ok, I don't know what age the kids were but I beleive anyone dismissing Scratch as a learning aid to introdcutory programming is either elitist or ignorant. Scratch gives kids a chance to develop skills in problem solving and communicating ideas, essential skills for any software development and many other areas. In my experience (I run a Code Club at a primary school, 10-20 kids depending on weather/what else is happening) it works well and those kids have no trouble in moving onto python as they progress. Kids starting with python tend to struggle more as they are battling arcane rules of syntax AND problem solving at the same time.

Whether you consider this real programming is irrelevant, they aren't coding buisness rules that a mega corparation depends on or control systems for an aircraft. They are learning. Is "dragging and dropping" a few blocks together to pilot a rocket around the screen really any different from using logo to move a turtle about or even a BigTrac? Do people really think that physically typing a move command teaches anything more than dragging a block that has the word move written on it?

Scratch is a first step for normal kids, for it to be as accessible to every student it has to be conceptually intuative and a bit of fun always helps. It's certainly not best suited for those who like many of us here that were taking video recorders apart and writing machine code for z80s. Without accessible learning strategies coding will remain a niche skill, only those who would naturally discover it will continue to do so, others will be put off at the frustration of cryptic error messages due a semi-colon missing at the end of a class (c++) or wrong indentation (python).

Many people often state they should use X or Y language, occasionally citing that that language is desirable in industry. My first programming was basic on a zx81 before I started lower level coding. I was writing basic programs on paper over 14 months before I got my first computer (parents could not afford one when I first asked for one as an xmas present). Presumably I should be scoffed at and it pointed out that using basic was a waste of my time, I should have used my time learning something more practical. I've discussed this more than once on here, but learning to develop software is not about learning a languages syntax but learning to solve problems AND communicate your solution.

> We need better courses and the teachers able to teach them in place for this to work.

Yes we do, what is apparant however that relying on people happy to turn down a well paid career and teach is not going to give you the best choice of candidates in sufficent quantities. Having good intentioned but essentialy random lessons centered around what a software developer beleives to be important will unlikley to be any better than a teacher with no real idea of the subject but who knows how to teach. Something like Code Club helps fill the gap, it provides education in a well thoughtout and structured way, the teachers become involved and you get the useful contributions from both parties.

If people reading this do think teachers need a hand teaching this stuff please consider running a Code Club. Note, apart form running a code club I have nothing to do with the organisation other than being registered with them and using their materials, I certianly do not speak for them, the above is my opinion.

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wikkity
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Re: IT pay has been static for over ten years

As have those in most other trades and industries

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Amazon's delivery drones SHOT DOWN by new FAA rules

wikkity
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must remain within VLOS of the operator

Just have a couple people (1 driver, 1 pilot) in a van following it. You could even put extra parcels in the back of the van to save the drone having to fly home to pick up the next parcel. Also, if the addressee was out, one of the van occupants could drop a "we missed" you card in the letter box.

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CHAINSAW HORROR advert earns GiffGaff a slap from regulator

wikkity
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Re: Poor child

The issue here is that ads are being shown that are inapproriate for the content being _viewed_, it should not make any difference what age I am. I could be over 18 and be very sensitive to gore, even suggested. If I create a playlist called "Kids planet songs" and sit down to watch it I would not expect to have 18+ ads displayed in between videos.

I paid for cinema tickets last weekend with a credit card, many people accept that as proof I'm 18+ when purchasing online. The film was a U, would you expect to see ads that are rated 12, 15, 18 before a U film? Of course not, because the _target_ audience are kids. So if the target audience for something online are kids the ads should be appropriate.

> can't be bothered to log out

Logging out may not be a practical option. What if the software obtains permissions for your You tube account from an account on the device. Would you consider it sensible to force someone to logout device wide prior to viewing a few videos on YouTube? A lot of third party software misuses (IMHO) authorisation to various service and not provide logout/account dissociation mechanisms, would you expect someone to log onto google and revoke that apps permissions befre using it?

If someone needs to log out to ensure they don't see inappropriate advertisements you lose playlists, viewing history and more importantly, the ability to remotely (well room next door) monitor what is being watched and use chromecast to play stuff. Without being able to monitor and control what content is being played YouTube would be a no go for young children never mind a pain to use, which is a shame as there is loads of good learning resources on there, having to log off is severly limiting.

Finally, something legal. In the UK, restrictions exist on ads that "might result in harm to children physically, mentally or morally", this is clearly an example hence the complaint was upheld.

http://asa.org.uk/Consumers/~/media/Files/CAP/Codes%20CAP%20pdf/CAP%20Section%205.ashx

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wikkity
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Re: Poor child

> Want to stand up to something? Choose something important.

I don't agree. If you said only stand up for one thing I'd agree, but if we only stood up for the _important_ things then we'd be in sorry state of affairs. Over the years I've stood up and continue to stand up for many things and been to a lot of demonstrations, amongst other incidents I've had my head kicked in by Combat 18 and been spat on idiots who pretend to be religioius.

> An ad with a guy with a chainsaw and a damsel in distress in it -

It is if it upsets your child, clearly you have never seen your own child really upset ans distressed as a result of something that could be avoided by people questioning themselves if their actions have sideaffects.

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wikkity
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Re: Poor child

> Facing a future with daddy being a miserable whiner...

I assume you don't have kids, otherwise

Poor child - Facing a future with a daddy who can't be bothered to stand up to ensure their children are protected from thoughtless companies.

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Five years of Sun software under Oracle: Were the critics right?

wikkity
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Re: Good read

I was disappointed that they missed something I think give an insight into another reason Oracle wanted Sun. Before the buyout Oracle were saying exactly the same thing as ASF were about opening up the specification processes. Java is essential to just about every aspect of their business, and they'd been buying a lot of companies and tech based on Java (e.g. JRockit, the JVM most people considered the most performant at time.)

Jump forward a couple a short while and suddenly they no longer felt that opening of the process was no longer needed. A huge shame, Harmony had so much to offer and potential.

Java under Oracle had a very shaky start but seems a lot more on track now, still plenty of wrong directions being followed IMHO though. I do wish however someone else bought Sun, I'd have preferred Google or even IBM.

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Spartan on Windows 7? Microsoft is 'watching demand'

wikkity
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Oh great

we'll soon have two half baked browsers to work around and slow adoption of the further corners of HTML5

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Is Windows RT not invited to the Windows 10 upgrade party?

wikkity
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Re: my £50 chinatab is pretty useless

How old is it? Are they comparable specs?

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wikkity
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Re: RT seems pointless now

> They are way better than Android tablets at this price point though. A full OS and none of the laggyness.

Hardly worth coming out from under your bridge for 4 measly downvotes was it.

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Verizon posts WANTED poster for copper rustlers

wikkity
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Re: "Shopping" is the latest crime thing here

Wow, the US is really behind the times we had that in the 80s and called it something much better "ram raiding". If it really is new try starting a business installing concrete/metal bollards in front of shops so the cars can't get though or build up enough speed, you'll make a fortune.

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KimDotCom flails desperately, launches chat service

wikkity
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Re: MegaChat is in-browser, that's not very practical

I'd have thought the exact opposite, much more practical than have bespoke clients installed on every device that I may want to use. If you really need a native app I'm sure there are/will be plenty of browser wrapper apps out there.

Ok, so most of the names you mentioned are involved with WebRTC buts thats just at the standard level, plenty of implementations to choose from.

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SPACE the FINAL FRONTIER: These are the images of COMET PROBE ROSETTA

wikkity
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Re: Pretty amazing pictures!

War and medicine have always been major drivers in technological development. Of course, nowadays you can add porn to that list.

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Top US privacy bod: EU should STOP appeasing whiny consumers

wikkity
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Re: That's the way the UK as well as the US has worked for years

UK != EU

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Your anonymous code contributions probably aren't: boffins

wikkity
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Re: object orientated

You can write OO code in any language if you are perverted enough.

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Give ALL the EU access to Netflix, says Vince Cable

wikkity
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he tell delegates he will tell delegates

I've heard of EU and government inefficiencies and requiring things in duplicate/triplicate but surely this is taking things a bit too far?

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'If you see a stylus, they BLEW it' – Steve Jobs. REMEMBER, Apple?

wikkity
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a human finger attached to a human arm

So thats were I'm going wrong. Could explain why they leave sticky smelly trails after a few days of been snipped off.

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GRENADE! Project Zero pops pin on ANOTHER WINDOWS 0-DAY

wikkity
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Re: Waiting for a company to patch before you disclose could go on for years

Just like moonpig

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Bacon-smoking locals provoke noxious Chinese smog

wikkity
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Re: About that Picture

Looks like standard streaky bacon to me, but unsmoked :-(

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Google v Oracle: US Supreme Court turns to Obama in Java copyright war

wikkity
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ISO not ANSI

Please don't belittle the effort that other national standards committees do, ANSI is one of 150+ national members. A significant amount of the work involved in developing the C, C++ and related standards came from countries from other than the USA.

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UKIP website TAKES A KIP, but for why?

wikkity
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"send tips and corrections"

That requires sending an email. At work I can only access my work email and I won't send a non work related email with that, hence the errors I have noticed in the past remain incorrect.

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Buses? PAH. Begone with your filthy peasant-wagons

wikkity
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Re: From the user's POV, cars are awesome

It always makes me chuckle when schools are on holiday that just a small percentage of less cars on the road means my bus actually runs on time.

And it always makes me frown when I get stuck in a traffic jam when on a bus with 50 people crammed in when the turn off is only 20m away. When all it would take is for a few of the cars in front (with a single driver) to move a little closer to the car in front instead of leaving a gap twice the length of their car as they can't be bothered of moving every time.

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Your data: Stolen through PIXELS

wikkity
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Re: If the attacker has physical access, then it's no longer YOUR computer.

RE: Wow, where do you get the authority to deny your office workers USB flash drives?

It's very common. And many more places only allow encrypted drives.

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Google App Engine has THIRTY flaws, says researcher

wikkity
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Re: It's Oracle Java: Of course it's going to be riddled with security holes!

This is running on a server.

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Oi, UK.gov. WHERE'S THE DETAIL on your Google Tax?

wikkity
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Re: Tax on profits...

> but the above is the principle behind it

I'm not convinced, it should be but not what I believe is their actual intent. Given how difficult it will be to write, never mind the legalities involved and the fact that there are global attempts to do this I can not see how this will achieve anything. I find it hard to believe the government has anything up their sleeve to implement this and think that this is nothing but some pre-election posturing to gain some points with potential voters.

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What a pity: Rollout of hated UK smart meters delayed again

wikkity
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Re: Pointless and dangerous fads

We've now got a smart meter. I miss providing my own meter reading, I used to add a bit extra on just before a price increase.

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Hacker dodges FOUR HUNDRED YEARS in cooler for SCANNING sites

wikkity
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Re: I'd like to know

> Why it let him run 14,000 password guesses, and didn't lock him out completely after less than 10 failed attempts??

Thats probably why the admins were logged out, their accounts had probably been disabled. Of course his IP should have been blocked assuming all attempts were from the same src.

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Pity the poor Windows developer: The tools for desktop development are in disarray

wikkity
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quite a few XCode setups break on upgrade

I completely agree. NEVER, upgrade xcode until the project is shipped or you have plenty of slack to waste time getting a project that builds again. I've lost count the number of corrupted files I've left with (no I can't revert from scm as xcode simply corrupts them again next time).

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Cries of spies as audit group finds possible 'backdoor' in Bittorrent Sync

wikkity
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Re: but unreadable code for me

Apart preferring that that big hardcoded would be defined differently, the rest of the code is perfectly readable. Had browse though some of the code and it would appear to be easy to follow and understand.

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Are MPs smarter than 5-year-olds? We'll soon find out at coding school – Berners-Lee

wikkity
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Sorry Tim

I've pretty much supported every opinion you've had to date, but this is just crazy. Why just coding, why not get them to do electronics. Maybe they should also be taught biology/chemistry for health related bills etc...

Whatever your opinions on politicians and whichever side of the fence (or just sitting on it) they are on I would rather they concentrated on the job they already have, they usually made a bad job of it as is with the time they put in now. Of course, if some of them actually wanted to I'd support them as long as it did not detract from their job.

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Ha ha, fooled you! Shares tumble over G4S fake website profit warning

wikkity
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Re: Impetus to check

Would it be illegal to sell shares and buy them back when the price goes down if you realised the statement was a fake but you knew others would think it true?

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REVEALED: Apple fanbois are 'MENTALLY UNSTABLE' - iShop staff

wikkity
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Meanwhile, all the nice people (who actually spend money) get screwed.

Nothing new there, we certianly didn't need an Apple insider to tell us what happens to those who spend their cash there.

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wikkity
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Re: Assholes with a sense of entitlement?

> Southerners, can never get the inflections right when trying to do Northern speak.

Aye ye reet they divvent

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3D PRINTED GUNS: THIS time it's for REAL! Oh, wait – no, still crap

wikkity
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Re: How it's Made

> Show me somebody excited about 3D printing

Ok, I am. I've worked in a (car) factory, many years ago, I'm also reasonably familair with how many other things are made. Are you suggesting that once someone knows how something is made the urge to make stuff disappears. Maybe all those here who like tinkering away with a soldering iron should stop as fab labs can print straight to silicon?

I can assume that that you have never at to fork out £25+ for a simple bit of molded plastic that your £1000 power tool won't work without? Assuming the part is still stocked that is, even though spare part availablity is a big factor when buying expensive tools there always seems to be a few bespoke parts that are hard to find 10 years down the line.

Anyway, a factory is well out of my price range to make stuff I want, so in the mean time while I'm waiting for 32 printing quality to improve/price to come down I'll continue to persue my hobbies by making things in a time consuming manner or using saved searches on ebay for spare parts as I do now.

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Wanna be Facebook? It just open-sourced some of its web server code. Now to find 1bn users...

wikkity
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Incorrect link

The link for Folly is incorrect, you are missing a :/ after https. Firefox sends me to https.com that redirects me to HomeImprovement.com. I know many people look at open source as DIY software so maybve thats right.

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Poll: Yes, yes, texting while driving is bad but *ping* OH! Hey, GRAB THE WHEEL, will ya?

wikkity
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Re: is this anything new?

> To the motorcyclist who says he'll now drive assuming everyone is out to kill him - that's how I've always driven even in cars

My (car) driving instructor told me the exact same thing on my first lesson almost 40 years ago. Saved my life a few times I'm sure as both a driver and a pedestrian.

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Apple patents AUTOGRAPHS. Checkmate, eBay

wikkity
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Apologies

I'm really so sorry for this incorrect comment. I should check things when told things, someone (i thought reliable) told me he died a couple of weeks back, I thought it strange I had not heard anything in the press but put that down to me just been too busy recently.

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wikkity
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> So... I can go to Waterstones, speak to Terrry Pratchett

Alas, no I'm afraid. Unless the author at Waterstones is a psychic

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Improving JavaScript: Google throws AtScript into the mix

wikkity
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RE: I'm struggling to see much if any need for Runtime Introspection in a language

A lot of people said the same when it was introduced into java. A trivial but common example for a web page would be annotate a variable with a min/max value, a framework can then example that the validate data entry.

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Why Comrade Cameron went all Russell Brand on the UK’s mobile networks

wikkity
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Re: What

> Do people forget that many city dwellers also have a country residence.....

pretty sure if I had one I would not any phone signal whilst I was there.

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NHS quango fatcats spend £2m tax dosh on iPads and iPhones

wikkity
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Re: Oh Dear

Or people would install every single bit of shareware distributed with PC magazines. Of course, nothing sensible permissions would not cure.

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So long, thanks for all the ...er, FISH BRIGHTER than boffins thought

wikkity
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Re: no surprise to me

Was going to ask which finger they bit until I realised I miss read what you said and they don't bite like humans.

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Microsoft fitness bands slapped on wrists: All YOUR HEALTH DATA are BELONG TO US

wikkity
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> How can I get any sleep if you keep waking me up to go to meetings!

Thought you were supposed to sleep during meetings not before.

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Big Retail: We don't hate Apple, we hate the credit card companies

wikkity
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think this kind of activity is cool

Or in more likelihood, profitable. It's probably more likely someone trying to commit fraud was hacking around than someone trying to do a cool hack.

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Amazon hopes FIRE STICK will light up its video service

wikkity
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Re: Where is the vanilla android version?

Thanks for that, never noticed that. Looks like it only came out last month though, about time.

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wikkity
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Where is the vanilla android version?

If they made app available on non-amazon android devices they might get a few more customers. I had a "free" subscription to this with Prime but no hardware I could use it with, no longer have prime but may have kept it if I could have used this.

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UK consumers particularly prone to piss-poor patching

wikkity
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Re: It's not my choice...

I need this too. However I simply white list works access site, bingo, java does not run for any other site. Maybe your IT department needs to understand how java works in the browser and provide suitable instructions rather than encouraging you to drop security down.

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Mozilla releases geolocating WiFi sniffer for Android

wikkity
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Re: "The spiel for the app even encourages users to walk roads less travelled"

At least the police would know where you went missing.

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No nudity, please, we're GAMING: Twitch asks players to cover up

wikkity
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Why?

Maybe I'm getting old and missing the point, but why do people want to watch people playing computer games? I can vaguely understand why someone would want to watch the actual gameplay but watching the player completely stumps me.

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Apple, Google take on Main Street in BONKING-FOR-CASH struggle

wikkity
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Re: Funny..

Thought they meant it was invite only for the vendor.

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