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* Posts by Mike Bell

367 posts • joined 3 Aug 2007

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Reddit users discover iOS malware threat

Mike Bell
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Windows

Re: @gerdesj

'Cheers' to you as well. Here's the icon you were looking for >>

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Mike Bell
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Reddit users discover malware threat to fake iOS systems

There, fixed that for you.

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USB reversible cables could become standard sooner than you think

Mike Bell
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Nice to see you lads championing a reversible connector and owning up to the annoyances inherent in polarised connectors.

Just at a time when the EU are mandating a polarised connector for phone chargers.

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Bendy or barmy: Why your next TV will be curved

Mike Bell
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Yeah, right

When I move in with the teletubbies I might consider a curved screen. As it is I quite like my flat screen on my flat wall.

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Does my mass look big in this? Roly-poly galaxy El Gordo more porky than first feared

Mike Bell
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Re: Big Bang (@ Bunbury)

That's an interesting analogy (bombs within bombs) but it doesn't sound much like a big bang. It sounds like a big bang followed by lots of other little bangs at the periphery...

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Mike Bell
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Big Bang

It's generally believed that the whole show started off with a big bang, and stuff flew apart from day 1.

Or, if you want to look at it another way, it's just space that's getting bigger each second.

Or, if you want to look at it another way, the whole notion of size might be a non-starter because there are no measuring sticks outside the universe, and words such as big and small mean diddly squat in an absolute sense.

But whichever way I look at it, I can't easily reconcile this image in my mind with the notion of massive galaxies bumping into each other. When a bomb goes off, I'd expect all the bits to fly off away from each other, not go bumping into each other.

What am I missing? I guess there has to be a simple explanation somewhere.

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Three daddy Hutch has no interest in O2

Mike Bell
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They haven't made a bad start, actually. Their customers can already wander around these countries without facing roaming charges...

UK, USA, Austria, Australia, Denmark, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Italy, Macau, Republic of Ireland, Sri Lanka and Sweden.

But it would be good if they - and all EU operators - scrapped roaming charges completely, at least within EU countries. I'm sure that will happen one day.

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iFixit boss: Apple has 'done everything it can to put repair guys out of business'

Mike Bell
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Re: Apple DON'T repair your iThing

I can only speak from personal experience...

I dropped my year-old iPhone onto concrete and cracked its screen. I took it to an Apple Store, armed with the knowledge that for £100 or so they would give me a new replacement.

As it happens, they gave me a new phone for nothing.

Love them or hate them, Apple's support is generally second to none.

I can't say I'm surprised that they would wring their hands if you've jailbroken your device. Their support covers software and hardware, and they can't be expected to investigate and fix problems caused by installing an unsupported operating system.

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Apple rakes in 60% of profits in still-surging smartphone market

Mike Bell
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Re: Don't care.

Don't forget to drop in at Aldi on your way to the swamp.

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PAF! MPs go postal over postal location data sell-off by Coalition.gov

Mike Bell
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Re: http://www.royalmail.com/postcode-finder

50 lookups might be fine for you, but the likes of Google Maps, Apple Maps etc. won't be so lucky. They probably pay a pretty penny to get that data. I wonder if they pay for access to ZIP code data in the US?

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Europe approves common charger standard for mobe-makers

Mike Bell
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Re: big_D RS232

I know what you mean about RS232 and 432 ports - I've had plenty of dealings with them myself over the years. In good light looking more or less straight on, you can plug in an RS232 cable fine. If it's at the back of a PC or other piece of equipment with you leaning over, it's often guesswork territory.

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Mike Bell
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Re: @Anonymous Coward

I generally charge my phone in the bedroom while it is dark. I don't want any fruitless fiddling about wondering if the connector is the right way round or not, even if it takes just one second - assuming I haven't bent a couple of feeble pins in the meantime, that is. Whoever dreamt up D-type connectors needs shooting. Likewise for legislators who mandate their use.

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Mike Bell
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Re: Suck it, Apple.

Every time I plug my iPhone in to charge, I thank to high heaven that I'm not using one of those shitty micro-USB jokey connectors.

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iPhone 6 FEELS your heat, wetness... and it'll TELL Apple – report

Mike Bell
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Still no NFC?

Nope, and never likely to be, either. Just like you're never going to find an infrared transmitter built into an iPhone.

Apple are betting on Bluetooth LTE / iBeacon being a more useful technology than NFC, together with fingerprint recognition for making payments.

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Does Apple's iOS 7 make you physically SICK? Try swallowing version 7.1

Mike Bell
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Re: Sensible keyboard

Sorry, we'll have to disagree on that. Android's forever-switching keyboard is a gimmick. I think I prefer animated GIFs on websites to that.

Apple don't generally add configuration options of any kind unless there's a very good reason to do so.

If you are disconcerted by not having your beloved 'sensible' keyboard, you'll probably fall over dizzy if you use a regular physical keyboard like I'm typing on now.

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Mike Bell
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Dancing keyboard

@karlh

That would be very easy to do. But it would be a mistake, and Apple well know it. For many people, a (fairly) pointless and frequent keyboard layout change would be an irritating distraction. I believe people have tried it on jailbroken devices and rapidly come to the conclusion that it's not a great feature.

I somehow seem to struggle by with my proper physical keyboard and its shift key.

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Hubble 'scope snaps 200,000-ton chunky crumble conundrum

Mike Bell
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Giant worm responsible

Exogorth

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Can you smell bacon? Yes! And it's coming from your iPhone!

Mike Bell
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Re: " ... that is a beard and an a mouth ..."

Yup, it needed saying. Otherwise some poor unsuspecting soul might have inadvertently viewed the image side-on and wondered what the hell those teeth are doing there.

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Flying fondleslab causes injury after plane hits turbulence

Mike Bell
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Re: I blame Apple

I blame global warming.

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Apple launch iSpy certification scheme for snooping devs

Mike Bell
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Re: Back to corded headsets..

"what's so special about the ability to track a Bluetooth ID?"

The idea is that the user can optionally run an app that makes use of iBeacon location information. That app might, for example, be a British Museum app that pops up interesting information in the language of your choice, as you walk past an exhibit.

To take this specific example, the app vendor can refer the user to the terms & conditions of the app.

It falls under the remit of "Location Services" in iOS. The user has complete control over which apps have access to location services, and they have to be actively enabled for any app.

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Update your Mac NOW: Apple fixes OS X 'goto fail' SSL spying vuln

Mike Bell
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Re: Never mind that SSL fix...

Well, to be very generous, it would be possible to have mail sitting on a server somewhere that you don't know about yet. That's unread mail, and if it's not counted, the count is not spot on.

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US Appeal Court slaps Apple for trying to shake antitrust monitor

Mike Bell
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Re: Oh boo

If you want to be a proper troll, at least invent a false name.

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California takes a shot at mobile 'killswitch' mandate

Mike Bell
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Re: Article appears to be misleading

Read it. The bill is concerned with disabling a device, and allowing the owner to disable the means of disablement. It doesn't say anywhere that law enforcement may disable it or, more dramatically, 'kill it'. It's under the user's control, and it says that quite explicitly.

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Mike Bell
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Article appears to be misleading

Senate Bill 962 would mandate that all handsets and tablets sold in California be pre-equipped with a "killswitch" option that would allow an owner or law enforcement to render a device inoperable if stolen or lost.

The actual wording of the relevant section of the bill is as follows.

The rightful owner of an advanced mobile communications device may affirmatively elect to disable the technological solution after sale. However, the physical acts necessary to disable the technological solution may only be performed by the end-use consumer or a person specifically selected by the end-use consumer to disable the technological solution and shall not be physically performed by any retail seller of the advanced mobile communications device.

Ergo, law enforcement will have no right to disable said device unless authorised to do so by the owner.

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Mozilla takes a page from Google with sync-friendly Firefox Accounts

Mike Bell
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Where's the patent for this?

Since Google is doing this in Chrome, Apple is doing it in Safari and Mozilla is now doing it in Firefox, that has to be a juicy target for some twat who undoubtedly managed to get a weasel-worded patent along these lines years ago.

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Rampaging Google now second most valuable company ON EARTH

Mike Bell
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Mushroom

Beware of what you wish for...

When your head is about to explode courtesy of a Google-powered blipvert and your Google-powered Android device is malwared to jiggery, crying into your pillow isn't going to help.

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Apple seeks patent for mood-sensing technology

Mike Bell
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No targeted ads, thanks

It's the only way to be sure.

The bright young things at Apple spectacularly failed to assess my mood right after my mother had died, by sending me a personally addressed email inviting me to buy her a load of stuff for Mother's Day.

If, on the other hand, the ad-men had resisted the urge to annoy the world on this occasion! there would have been no issue.

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University boffins build snoop-spotting snitch app

Mike Bell
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Re: Where is the app for the iPhone

You might want one for your iPhone, but you certainly don't need one.

Settings | Privacy | Location Services shows you which apps you've allowed to slurp your position. And the OS itself monitors on an app by app basis how often they do so, reporting this in the form of various status icons (documented in the settings). You can also enable a status bar icon to be displayed when any location slurping by anything goes on.

So, no app required, and no 'proper phone' that needs an app installed to do this.

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Japanese quantum boffins 'may have the key to TELEPORTATION'

Mike Bell
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Re: I think I speak for most when I say...

Don't worry about it. God thinks that way, too. He hasn't a fucking clue what it all means at the nuts & bolts level because that's the way he designed it. We'd like to think that everything is understandable, but that doesn't mean that's the way things are. It's one of the many reasons I get smashed at the pub several times a week.

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Apple punts patches for holes in Pages and OS X, Windows iTunes

Mike Bell
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Re: iTunes

@AC 19:45

The page you cite lists OS X vulnerabilities that were patched a long long time ago.

As does the other.

Whilst I'm sure OS X has vulnerabilities, linking to bogus lists like this does not help.

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Vile Twitter trolls thrown in the cooler for rape abuse tweet spree

Mike Bell
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Re: Rule No. 1

Very well put, AC@14:30

But if you fancy a proper challenge, try posting that kind of response on The Guardian comments section and you will soon find that the world is full of delusional idealists who imagine that men just need to stop and think to make the world a cosy place. A bit like the 'Slut Walk' ladies who parade around London with their tits hanging out, dreaming that their behaviour will magically transform the behaviour of testosterone-fuelled sociopaths.

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Apple’s Mac turns 30: How Steve Jobs’ baby took its first steps

Mike Bell
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Re: I wish my MacBook Pro had a palm rest!

It's not a sharp edge; it's a blunted edge.

I appreciate that some people have delicate skin, but it's not something that I've ever noticed myself as any kind of issue whatsoever. Ever.

Personally, the clean lines work very well for me. You might benefit from some fluffy wrist cuffs, or a 3rd party wrist cushion for deluxe comfort :-)

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Google cleared to land in private terminal at Silicon Valley airport

Mike Bell
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OK, I admit it

I'm jealous. There, I said it.

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Audiophiles: These Wi-Fi speakers have a stereo drift of less than 25μs – good enough for you?

Mike Bell
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You're wasting your money. I read somewhere in a magazine once that the best way to improve sound quality is simply to adjust all the screw heads in your house so that their slots are aligned vertically. You might need to replace a few Philips screws, of course, but that's a small price to pay for audio bliss.

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T-Mobile US: AT&T's mobe buyout deal is so 'desperate', we'll do it too

Mike Bell
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Competition

Who'd have thought it? Competition actually working in the US telecoms market.

Bring it on. Those poor Americans have been raped by their carriers with exorbitant mobile costs for far too many years now.

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Google and Apple in DRAG RACE: It's fanboi Mercs VS fandroid Audis

Mike Bell
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Don't panic

"There's nothing wrong with the dashboard now. We don't need cars with message updates, email and SMS notifications.

The dashboard should contain only the essentials, speed, fuel, temp.

Anything else should be read out to the driver with text to speech."

The idea is that the dashboard will provide visual information such as mapping like you find already in plenty of inbuilt vehicle satnav systems. As for matters like messages, the idea is that if you want that kind of thing you can have it read out to you. Nobody is going to be so stupid as to design something that's dangerous to use, and the legislators would not allow that to happen in any case.

I imagine that one of its virtues is that the dash will inherently be connected to the vehicle's audio system, so you'll get good quality announcements, and nice easy access to your (or your kids) portable music library.

It's early days yet, though. There's a heads-up of Apple's plans here.

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Get lost, fanbois: Nokia pulls HERE Maps from Apple's App Store

Mike Bell
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Apple maps - could be worse

I was as shocked as anyone when Apple ditched Google for their premature proprietary system. Especially integrated Street View, which I found very useful. Coupled with my favourite pub being displaced by several hundred metres, I was not impressed.

Recently, however, I used my iPhone on a trip to Japan, and it did a good job of caching large parts of the country when I was using hotel wifi. The past couple of days, I've been using it as a sat nav in my car, and it's done a good job there as well. I like the way it presents driving instructions.

Just saying, Apple's maps aren't all bad.

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Fanbois, prepare to lose your sh*t as BRUSSELS KILLS IPHONE dock

Mike Bell
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Move along now, nothing to see here

" the new radio equipment rules will oblige manufacturers to make mobile phones compatible with a common charger"

So, Apple will supply an adaptor that allows iPhones to connect to the generic charger. Big deal.

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Macbook webcams CAN spy on you - and you simply CAN'T TELL

Mike Bell
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Waiting to be impressed

I'd be a little more impressed if they'd actually done this trick with a machine that was vaguely modern.

Is it likely that the same interlock is being used after all these years? Dunno. But probably not, would be my guess.

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World+dog: Network level filters block LEGIT sex ed sites. Ofcom: Meh

Mike Bell
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Re: How does the choice work?

I spent half an hour looking on the BT website last night and couldn't find any settings anywhere. When they get around in a few months to asking my preference on filters (as a long-standing customer), perhaps there will be an obvious way to TURN THE FECKING THING OFF.

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Oi, bank manager. Only you've got my email address - where're these TROJANS coming from?

Mike Bell
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Another possibility

A compromised router outside of Santander's control.

It's all very well saying that you just use a particular e-mail address for one purpose, but sending or receiving e-mail is generally like sending or receiving a postcard. Any number of prying eyes have the opportunity to snoop on the address.

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Drawers full of different chargers? The IEC has a one-plug-to-rule-them-all

Mike Bell
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Re: Not so strange, really

"Strangely, those wonderful lightning connectors that the whole world should use are not so wonderful after all."

The reviewers that you quote are in the main purchasing cables that they broke. Most likely through very rough treatment. Of course they will be cheesed off that they aren't protected from their own ham-fisted behaviour. Meanwhile, many millions of users seem to struggle by with the cable that came with their phone.

It's not, as you state, merely a USB cable. It also has an embedded processor that routes signals according to its orientation. And offers some degree of protection against Chinese knock-offs that are likely to torch your house in the middle of the night.

A sober comparison of Lightning vs "notoriously fragile" Micro-USB can be found here.

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Mike Bell
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MagSafe is neat

In addition to Apple, I too am a big fan of their MagSafe connector. They are excellent. For those who've never used one before, they are drawn towards the laptop housing and snick into place magnetically. Perfect ergonomics. A bit of gentle pressure in the right direction and it undocks just as easily. Very useful if you're anywhere near a twitchy cat that likes jumping on your equipment while you're typing.

OK, advert over. One thing about Apple's MagSafe chargers is that they come in different power ratings according to the demands of the laptop. Personally, I think that's a bad idea because the connector is the same, and you can potentially end up with excessive charging time if you happened to plug in the wrong charger. Harmonising the juice rating for laptop chargers would be a good idea IMHO.

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Accused Glasshole driver says specs weren't even turned on for traffic stop

Mike Bell
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Re: Not guilty plea for 80 in a 65

Mitigating circumstances, if you're playing Galaxians at the time.

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Just who is Apple's most frustrated fanboi? Surprise – it's GOOGLE

Mike Bell
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Re: They should be forced to use

"The only one OS that can be out of box supported on enterprise level is Windows,"

Well it certainly supported a bunch of hackers of Google machines a few years back, that's for sure. That's why Google banned PCs from the workplace.

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Ditch your boring iPhone for a hot Android piece, says Google's TOTALLY UNBIASED Eric Schmidt

Mike Bell
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"There just is no justification on spending hundreds of dollars every couple of years replacing a perfectly functional and useful device."

Yes there is. The world and technology moves on. My phone has features and capabilities that weren't there a couple of years ago. I like to make use of such things, so that's my justification.

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Astronomers spot 13-BEEELLION-year-old hot galactic threesome

Mike Bell
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Re: Errmmm....what?

Relativity makes things tricky. Our definition of now is particular to us. It's not the same now as that of a distant galaxy. So however you phrase it, you're going to upset somebody.

As far as that distant galaxy is concerned, we in our current state (as we regard it) happened billions of years ago in their past.

Appear poised to merge is exactly right.

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Macy's: Now with Apple's Minority Report ads system that TRACKS your iPHONE

Mike Bell
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Re: Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Stupid. Wrong.

@sabroni 14:11

You said "Clearly there is no opt out".

Thanks for your expert advice. Which happens to be wrong. Which bit of wrong don't you understand? Which bit of stupid don't you understand when you make pronouncements on which you have no knowledge?

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Mike Bell
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Re: fanbois can opt out by turning off their phone's location services.

@sabroni:

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Stupid. Wrong.

Settings | Privacy | Location Services

shows a list of apps that you wish to partake in location services. Don't want the Shopkick app to speak to you in this way? Turn off Location Services for the Shopkick app.

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From Dept of REALLY? Sueball lobbed at Apple over crap iOS Maps app

Mike Bell
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@Jemma:

"People rely on these devices and for one to be so monumentally inaccurate is dangerous"

People should never rely on this kind of device, especially when it might cause danger. Neither Apple nor Google make any warranty that their maps can be relied on with certainty.

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