117 posts • joined Monday 6th August 2007 14:29 GMT
Wish they'd mentioned this before we went an implemented an SMS based emergency notification system, in conjunction with th service provider, who can adjust the priority based on the message source (i.e. give US priority when we need) several years ago. We thought it had been working perfectly this last five years but apparantly not. We do have an entirely separate backup system consisting of receiving a pager notification - over a dedicated network - and then using Tetra radios to contact control but it has, thus far, not been needed.
I had to just look-up who those two (Eva Longoria and Pharrell Williams) are. I vaguely recognise Longoria but have never heard of anything Williams has apparantly done. So, having switched from a has-been comedian - who was never popular outside of the US in the any case - they are now going to use a model and some kid rapper to promote Vista. Sheesh, I'm a fan of Vista and even I think they are onto a big loser with this.
Sounds reasonable to me
If he was working for just one company for several years then yes, he was an employee and yes, to all the moaning bastards above, he would be entitled to all the same benefits (and constraints) of an equivalant employee within the same organisation.
Looks like mamma got her revenge from beyond the grave by seeding that old Chapter 11 story on Google yesterday!
So how many
satelites would it take for them to supply decent Internet speeds to those of us Brits who don't live within 2km of their local exchange or choose not to live in large towns and cities (may their souls be eternally damned)?
This is clearly a moronic publicity stunt. I'm sure the man himself is horrified by what he is being forced to do in order to raise funds for his department. Yes, of course, the English language changes all the time. Pronunciation, spelling and the introduction of new words ensures that the English language evolves with mankind in order to continue to be the most useful language we have. That's why it is the undisputed language in international communication.
However, there are many reasons - all known to our Professor - why spelling cannot be overhauled in the way he suggests. Many are mentioned above. Another I did not see mentioned (might have missed it so appologies) is Homophones.
The English language has thousands of examples of words that sound the same but have different meanings. Currently, they are differenitated by context and spelling. If you remove the different spelling then all words must be differentiated by context OR you have to go to great lengths to ensure the reader is sure which meaning was intended.
In fact, given the cost of Petrol, £40 of petrol is actually about 20% LESS petrol than it was before.
And don't get me started on the fuel duty thing. If Brown lowers duty, the price goes down. This means more people now can afford petrol. Supply and demand forces price back up. Voila, price is what it was before but the government now has less to spend on roads.
I've had no problems with Firefox so far but then, I'm a boring old fart. I don't do YouTube, Web apps or "Social Networking". Just plain old browsing - news, forums, shopping, bit of banking etc.
Still finding the tags in the "Awesome Bar" are fantastic and even begining to use the Bookmarks Bar to put buttons to my OWA Webmail etc.
Nice review but I suspect I am not the only one who, whilst liking the idea of the convenience of these things, doesn't want to have a full Windows/Mac/Linux PS running 24/7 just to be able to play music. MY PC is noisy and consumes a large amount of power - which costs money.
I'd like to be able to stick all my MP3's on a NAS box so that I can access them from the PC, the laptop AND one of these things. Does anyone know whether any of these can do that? It sounds like only the UPnP compatible one (was that the Philips) can.
I have a problem with software as a service
I have one major problem with software as a servcie. Obviously, it's main advantage is that you have access to the same suite of apps with the same look-and-feel, the same features and all your documents from wherever you have access to a web browser, right?
Except that last bit is just wrong. Any half decent company or (non-uk) government department - the kind of organisation where that feature would be hugely useful - blocks access to all this stuff. There is no way any responsible IT department is going to open up their firewall to allow this stuff to run is there?
Maybe I come at this from an extreme security point of view. My last job was at an auditors and I currently work for a Bank so the security I am used to is the kind where the answer to every question starts and ends with "No".
I actually agree with most of this except the line;
"I simply don't see where Google has the same grip over routes to market"
In this case, surely the market is the Internet. In which case, Google DOES control the routes to Market in the sense that it is the home-page of so, so many users and the first place they turn to when they want to find things. It's the default search engine of Firefox, thay even pay Opera for the same thing. They DO control the route to the Internet and so they CAN push their services/applications on users who don't know how to make a different choice or - more importantly - don't WANT to make a choice at all.
People are lazy bastards. If you can come up with a way of making their lives very simple by removing unecessary choices then you are onto a winner!
On the subject of BBC reporting on all things Climate-Change related, did anyone hear last nights "PM"? They were discusing US Vice-presidential candidate Palin's right-wing fundamentalist Christian beliefs. In particular we were told that she was a creationsist and, as such, believed (and here the reporters voice moved rapidly up through the gears of incredulity) "That the earth is just six thousand years old, abortion is wrong in all circumstances, even when the pregnancy is a result of incestuous rape AND" (and here his voice nearly went off the scale) "global warming ISN'T man made!!". Cue significant pause to allow the true nature of these appalling revelations to sink-in. "Is this really the kind of message the US wants to send out to the East?" he asked Carly Fiorina - The Republican spokeswoman chosen to defend these charges.
Flames Icon? Well, whilst the other two beliefs might be fair game, questioning the age of the earth will surely land that reporter in a fiery after-life.
Re: BatCat "The laptop now flies along"
That's simply untrue. Yes, XP would have been quicker than before if I had rebuilt it. However, no-one in their right mind would describe a Celeron 1.5GHz PC with 512MB RAM running XP SP3 with Office 2003, Media Player and Photo Editing Software as flying along. Acceptable? For the first 3-6 months maybe - maybe not.
Although, from my Wife's perspective (and I'm using her as a classic example of "Don't bother explaining it to me, I just want it to work") the "Suspend" is the main time saver. Under XP, she could suspend her laptop in seconds and bring in back in seconds. And then wait five minutes for the disk to stop thrashing before anything became usable. And then another five minutes for Outlook. A rebuild would have helped but Windows still thrashes like hell for ages after coming out of sleep mode and Outlook is just rediculous.
Under gOS she can suspend and restore in about 10s either way and everything is back at full speed.
I'm not "too" concerned about termination charges. They have them elsewhere and it seems a reasonable thing to do. After all, I have caller ID so, 99% of the time I only answer calls from numbers I recognise anyway. I have a minor problem in that, if it's work then the number does get bloacked.
But all calls I reject go to voicemail. So, my question is, will I have been deemed to have "recevied" the call (and therefore be charged for it) if I ignore it and it goes to voicemail?
If not, then I have no problem with termination charges.
If I DO have to pay, then termination charges are the devils spawn. All it takes is for a bunch of prank-calling kids to ring your phone repeatedly over-night (when I have the ringer set to silent so wouldn't notice) and it would be ME ringing up a bill.
Just thought I'd mention that I installed gOS on my wife's 5-year-old Dell laptop last night (something I'd been preparing for all week so this article was aptly timed). Took about an hour from scratch. Wirless just worked. Graphics just worked. Digital camera just worked. HP printer just worked. Battery monitor just worked. Hibernate just worked. The Laptop now flies along (XP was dying) so the Wife is chuffed to bits.
Thanks to Foxmarks she still has all her bookmarks in Firefox. Just three slight downsides - two nothing to do with the OS.
She was running Outlook in XP. I haven't been able to move her mail archive or address book over yet. I plan synching them to a GMail account (I kept the XP image as a VMWare machine) and then running IMAP from Thunderbird to the GMail - so that's sorted. Not exactly "Your Granny" stuff to sort out though.
MPlayer, the default video and music player, is the worst pile of crap I've ever seen. Still, loads of options there. Shouldn' take more than 10mins to sort out this evening and she doesn't really play much music on the laptop anyway.
All in all though, EVERYTHING worked straight away and the whole experience was actually quite pleasant. I've been setting up machines since the early 80s and have covered DOSs, Windows, Unix, Linux and others. This was the easiest install I've ever done.
I'll stick to a dual-boot of Ubuntu and Vista for the development PC, but for a "kitchen" laptop gOS suits our needs perfectly.
Let me get this straight
£150 buys you a radio that;
"feels a little lightweight and on the ‘plasticky’ side"
"The carry handle also feels a little flimsy"
"The control array...also looks a little fussy"
" The aerial...also feels a little on the vulnerable side"
"Only 15 station presets are available"
"has a power consumption level - which damages the Stream's portability credentials"
"The user experience isn't an altogether a happy one"
"just feels a little more complex than it could have been"
"the text is quite block-like"
"once text starts to scroll...it becomes very difficult to read"
"reception isn't the best we have seen"
"sound quality is also a little disappointing"
"there's a lag time between turning the dial and the screen reacting"
"the price is a little on the heavy side"
So how in the name of Gates does it get a score of 75%?
Seriously, this is getting rediculous. Does a product actually have to decapitate the operator in order to score less than 60% or are you guys just worried that you won't get sent lots of free stuff if you give a product a bad score?
I'm afraid I can't comment on Battery drain as (my wife's) laptop is tethered to the mains. It's five years old so I doubt the battery works in any case. However, for ease of use you cannot beat the new Beta 3 of gOS. The underlying OS is Ubuntu and it is imeadiately familiar to Ubuntu users but it is even more user friendly and has nice touches like battery monitor and WiFi monitor displayed by default when installed on a laptop.
Even on my Wife's aging Dell, setup was a simple matter of;
Obviously you have to change the bloody keyboard language from US to UK along with the clock but that was it. Fully functional laptop in about ten minutes flat.
And whilst the apps in the Dock Bar largely point to Google Apps they can be easily re-directed to whatever floats your boat.
It flies on an old Celeron 1.5GHz with 512MB of RAM. I highly recommend it!
Re: Kobus Botes
Well done on missing the point Kobus. The guy said he had kids. You are a (former) MCSE. In what way do you NOT get the difference between those two things?
It's incredibly easy to take a PC or Mac and lock them down so that the damn kids don't kill it with the usual "curiosity".
Yes, if you have a few weeks to search around and play you can probably do something similar with Linux but....
"What do you mean Linux was too tricky for your children? I'm an MCSE with 20+ years computer experience and I found the switch quite easy" really isn't a point worth making!
The people defending iPhones as Enterprise devices clearly haven't a clue. No encryption, no remote wipe, no means of pushing out corporate updates, running remote audits etc. etc. etc.
ALL of the things an enterprise needs to be able to do in order to be able to properly manage a LARGE NUMBER (did any of you read that bit of the article. Not just the CEO and his toy but hundreds of the damn things) of devices without getting sued under the Data Protection Act etc.
The iPhone is a great device but still a million miles away from any company (at least one that still wants to exist in 12 months time) deploying them as an enterprise solution.
I agree about them being a bit dismissive of Symbian. However, symbian is rather more hard work as you have to go out there and find the solutions. The solutions just exist for WM and BES so it's easy.
I'm always amazed/impressed that Blackberry still exists in the market place. Given that the whole world and it's Uncle use Exchange for their email and therefore have all the infrastructure in place to just turn on push-mail, the number of companies who go out and spend money implementing BES is astonishing - the company I work for included.
In our case, a loud-mouth Exec (to whom no-one ever says no) decided we were getting mobile email and going with Blackberry because all her Exec friends had it and were teasing her. IT were told to get on with it!
Oh, and both BES and ActiveSynch maintain an open connection all the time but neither require any siginificant ping/data exchange to maintain that connection. The difference Joe Montanna sights could be down to any number of things. Maintaining a 3G signal, screen size/brightness, power-saving etc etc. Windows Mobile devices can maintain a push-email connection for a long-weekend without charge under the right conditions.
I don't have any problem with the BBC investing money in this sort of service. I have no idea who it was, but someone on the BBC a few months ago sugested a (to my mind) rather brilliant definition of Public Service Broadcasting. He suggested the BBC should only be involved in things that would otherwise either not happen or take longer to come to fruition were a large, publicly funded corporation not involved.
His examples of things that wouldn't count were Deadenders (there are dozens of identikit Soaps so why is the tax payer having to spend Millions a year on another?), Jonathon Ross (if the Beeb needed to pay X million to get his contract, presumably that is because there was competition. If there was competition, the public gained nothing by the BBC signing him because he would be on the telly anyway) and How do you solve a problem like Maria (the license fee should not be spent on 10 hour commercials for West End Productions).
Example of things that would fall into this category would be proper science documentaries, regional news, educational programming, local radio etc. Although it was never mentioned, I think iPlayer and a national content delivery system is EXACTLY the sort of thing the BBC should be doing and I have no problem with them investing large amounts of the license fee in it.
By all means, drop the generic shite available on any commercial station and invest the money in new technology and the sort of content you just can't get made commercially.
Asus's main mistake
Surely Asus's main mistake was to listen to Techno journalists and technology fans - like us.
It was the average - don't give a damn how it works as long as it does - consumer who made the Eee PC a sucess. Then Tech Journalists and us came along with our usual sucking of teeth and said "well, it's very nice, but imagine if that screen was just a tiny bit bigger. You'd be able to get a decent sized keyboard in and run windows on it. Oh, but you'll need just a bit more RAM and one of those fancy Atom processors for that. Oh, and a bigger hard drive..."
We talked them into ruining it!
The problem with Linux on the desktop
I've lost count of the number of times I've installed Linux on the desktop. Everything looks great. Almost all the applications and functionality I need are there. Almost. So, I start fiddling. I decide to install an OSX style App doc, a new media player, some MP3 tagging software, some Open Source mapping...oh shit. I've killed Linux again.
[so the problem with Linux on the desktop is me]
Re: Marc MacAllister
It's not the ones that died for us that bother me. It's the ones who survived and won't stop moaning about what a shit-hole the country has become that piss me off. Apparantly, it's all down to the teenagers, who've only been in the country less than twenty years and have no power to change anything.
Certainly it can't possibly be their fault, what with them having lived here for eighty years and having voted for government after government....
Re: shame by Aron
"we let such a complete clueless moron into power"
No matter what your views on his political competency, describing a man who, according to many, achieved one of the best degrees in this country of the last 50 years as a "moron" suggests rather a lack of reading on your part.
Re: Barcodes at the supermarket
"How many times has the bar code reader at the supermarket checkout been unable to read the simple black and white stripe barcode and the checkout girl had to hand key it in herself?"
Erm, not seen that one for years now you come to mention it.
Oh, sorry, what was your point?
Can I suggest we take all people over the age of seventy and burn them in a huge pyre? We can use the resulting energy to power the country for a while, our energy requirements will fall dramatically (old people use more heating - so Age Concern tell us) resulting in a huge drop in the price of fuel.
Our taxes can be more than halved as we stop paying for their pensions, nursing care, winter fuel allowances, NHS costs etc etc. We will free up babdly needed housing stock for first-time buyers currently priced out of the market. Supermarket queues will move twice as fast.
It's a win, win, win, win solution. There really is no need for us to listen to their shite any more.
They lived through a period of extra-ordinarily low housing and fuel costs and have come out of it with zero provisions for their own retirement - instead choosing to sponge off the current generation who are already hard pressed by massive housing costs, at least in part caused by them!
Improve Britain. Burn a Granny!
"landing on a cross"
Does this mean the Paras are offering to crucify themselves? Seems a bit harsh for a Saturday afternoon balls-up in a strong cross-wind.
*incidentally, I would like to make it clear I have nothing but the utmost respect for "The Devils". I've met a few of them. They could turn me to pulp and I suffer from a severe allergy to pain.
In the real world of business, people are not running the latest browser on the latest OS. I would love to be developing in either Flash or Silverlight. In theory, it makes my job a lot easier. After all, imlementation has become well over half of the development cycle.
But in the real world, the problem it's trying to overcome is the problem preventing it from being used. Businesses are running all sorts of combinations of obsolete crap. IE5, Netscape, Windows 2000, NT4.1, XP SP1 etc and so Silverlight is not an option.
Can someone please explain to me..
Can someone please explain to me the point of the bluetooth headsets that have wires?
Forgive my simplistic views but a Bluetooth headset, when compared to just a pair of headphones, have the disadvantage of requiring power, the added weight that power requires, and potentially poorer sound quality for the price (e.g. my £20 Senheisser PX100's sound better than my £21 Jabra BT260s). The ONE advantage is the absence of wires.
So, the ones WITH wires have all the disadvantages of bluetooth headphones whilst forgoing the one advantage. If someone can explain, please do.
Incidentally, whilst a bit big and Ugly, the Jabra BT260s, at £21 incl delivery from play.com, sound just as good as the s9's and a lot better AND louder than the Nokias and also come with one of those iPod thingies - handy if you happen to be one of Steve Jobs' soulless minions. The battery also lasts nearly 10 hours - a lot better than most and a major consideration for bluetooth headsets that this group-test seems to have ignored.
Surely Microsoft are doing almost the opposite to taking advantage of a dominant position. If you believe all the MS Bashers, they have swapped a popular and dominant product for a crap one that no-one wants to buy. Certainly no-one is forcing people to buy a Windows PC anymore. There are plenty of places where you can buy a PC, a laptop or a MID (?) with Linux installed.
If stopping the sales of the worlds most predominant Desktop PC Operating System is "anti-competitive" then you really have to wonder if MS can ever do right for doing wrong?
If you want anti-competitive, see if you can find a company that sues anyone selling PC's with their OS installed unless THEY made the PC.
Unfortunately, those water seals don't just change if exposed to a sudden submersion. They are also prone to change, over a reasonable period of time, if they are just used in a humid area, a damp country or by someone with slightly sweaty hands. In fact, pretty much any use of a mobile phone that could be considered reasonable and normal will trigger these things over a period of a couple of years. Which gives HTC a great "get out of jail free" card when it comes to honouring warranties on devices that have genuinely developed a fault entirely unrelated to "water boarding" or any other form of liquid based communications device torture.
That's a real shame. I enjoyed using Pandora whilst it was available in the UK. Although I do now use Last.fm, I much preferred Pandora and I, too, purchased quite a lot of music from bands I had never heard of thanks to recommendations from Pandora.
Of course, the record industry is probably more interested in making sure people buy "Ooh Oooh baby yeah" by "Banal and the generics" after they've invested their thousands in the focus groups and image-creation companies. Does it really matter if a handful of people are exposed to some creative independants and make a £5 investment in a CD?
I use SugarSync which, as well as allowing me to backup my files, lets me synch them accross multiple machines, maintain different sets of backups, retrieve old versions of fils, deleted files, share files with others and backup/synch with a windows mobile device.
For exactly the same money as BT's backup only.
Nice to see
It's refreshing to see an employee who actually seems to give a damn about the products his company produces and wants to see them working as well as they possibly can. A depressingly rare thing.
Just plain wrong
I wish people would stop coming out with this rubbish about how fatties/smokers/drinkers etc are going to kill the NHS and drive the country bankrupt. It's just complete nonsense.
They are contributing huge amounts of dosh to the public coffers by paying for their disgusting habits. They are then contributing all over again by paying for fad diets, nicotine patches, gymn memberships etc. etc. THEN they are doing us another huge favour by keeling over with a heart attack at the age of 45, removing themselves from the pension pay-roll and massively reducing the amount the NHS has to spend on looking after them in their dotage.
The people who are costing us a fortune are the namby pamby bastards who insist we should treat them and keep the nasty fuckers alive!
Save oil. Burn a fat-bloke!
Missing the point
Now, I'm no fan of this piece of crap (see above comments) but it does seem the "you should buy an Eee PC" brigade are missing the point some what.
The reason (Redfly thinks) companies are going to by fleets of these is because of the lack of risk. By keeping all the data and processing on the mobile phone, tucked safely away in Mr Big's very expensive suite pocket, it doesn't matter if they leave the laptop on the train, drop it on the airport concourse or have it stolen from their car whislst on holiday in Edinburgh They have lost nothing* because all the valuable stuff is still in their pocket and the Windows Mobile device offers remote wipe!
Yes, it would be cheaper to buy an Eee PC but it also increases the risk that the morons who use these things will go and give away all the company secrets.
Now, you (and I) may think that's an utterly moronic point and why not just implement over-the-air backup and decent security etc but, moronic or not, that is how they are trying to market these things so the Eee PC argument doesn't fly.
* where nothing = £330
Does anyone use their smartphone as a PIM anymore
I keep reading all these heated debates about my phone can do this, my phone can do that. It's all based around surfing the web or playing videos etc.
I've had the (dis) pleasure of using most smartphones over the last eight years and they are all invariably crap at these things. Granted, the iPhone is the least crap, but still absolutely awful.
On the other hand, these devices can be great PIMS. That's what I remember them being designed for way-back-when as an evolution of the Palms and the Psions. Does anyone use them for this anymore? S60 is horrific at it and the iPhone is, again, better but still crap.
It does seem that, whilst trying to integrate every function they can into a device that is intrinsicly not suited for the task (largely due to the lack of screen space but also because all these things are desgined to work on PC's with multiple buttons) they have forgotten about the things these devices can be very good at. Organising your data.
Or is that just not "hip" in the world2.0?
Maybe there is hope for America after all
Clearly, not having even the most basic academic understanding necessary to complete the course, these students were intent on disrupting the teaching with constant interuptions and contradictory statements so this is a victory for common sense. It's just surprising that it has come from the US.
You do wonder whether we would have had the same outcome in the UK?
I did find the title of the book amusing. "A US History...". If, as the article suggests, it is based solely on the Bible, I don't recall the US getting much of a mention!
Those specs don't sound like the video
Has anyone seen that HTC Dream video on YouTube? It's about the size of a TytnII - which has a 2.8" screen. The spec in this article says it has a 3"x5" screen. According to my maths that works out at nearly a 6" diagonal (the square of the hypotenuse is equal to the sum of the square of the other two sides etc.). That's closer to an Eee PC than a smartphone. So either this "leak" is a complete load of bollocks or they are two completely different devices. I go with the former.
Let me get this straight
So this thing is designed to do one, very basic thing. That one thing it seems to do REALLY poorly. It isn't compatible with most devices and, even when it is compatible, it doesn't support a substantial proportion of compatible software. It is also terrifically expensive.
So why 70% ?
It doesn't do it's job very well and it costs a fortune.
If someone marketed a can opener that only worked on some cans and, even then, kept leaving feck-off great jagged edges and cost you £30 would you give that 70% as well?
I thought the general idea of a percentage score was that it ranged from 0-100. I've never seen you guys give less than 60%. So, if we take the ACTUAL available range as 60-100 then a score of 70 is actually 25% which is a bit more like it, though still generous.
I think you'll find the fact that it had confidential data on it was inconsequential. He just needed something that would play DVD's to keep the kids quiet for the long drive up to Edinburgh!
Way to go Dell. Let's launch a device aimed at the emerging markets. And lets do it early afternoon in San Francisco with a live Linkup to New Dehli - where it's about 3am!
Joined-up thinking from Dell?
Are you sure it wasn't the Russkies?
Sounds like even the Russians got their initial bombing co-ordinates from Wikipedia and these poor kids are just the scapegoats!
Shot himself in the foot
I can't help but feel that the guy has shot himself in the foot here. If we assume that he has ucovered a serious floor in several hundreds of millions of handsets, €20,000 seems a pittance. Lets face it, if Nokia does stump up the cash they will just share the costs with Sun and/or other interested parties and it's a drop in the ocean to such companies.
On the other hand, he's now marked his card as an unethical hacker/blackmailer and €20k isn't going to get him very far. It's barely six months average wages!
I can't help but think he would have been much better off setting up a company and "hiring" himself to Sun/Nokia as a "consultant" at some rediculously high rate. That way he gets a foot in the door, some decent cash AND maintains/improves his reputation.
Unless, of course, he tried that, they told him to get lost and now he's getting desperate to make some money from his discovery.
RE: All these names
Unfortunately clock speed doesn't even come close to telling you which chip will perform faster than another. The design of the chip is so complex that naming has become a real problem. I thought intel had nailed it with the first lot of Core 2 chips. The Letter and number told you which performed the best. Then they introduced Penryn and a whole new level of complexity and I gave up caring.
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