1668 posts • joined 14 Sep 2007
Based on my own experience and observations, I have a suspicion that coverage maps are based on old data, though maybe current with transmitter locations, but the networks haven't noticed that trees don't need planning permission to grow.
Dead spots have appeared in places where trees are generally taller than they were a decade ago
Re: An Old Fogey Speaks
Computers have been around long enough that some old people have had the chance to use them for a long time. Other old people have not.
Re: Cheap enough
I go my comfortable earphones at Tesco. They came with a choice of those plastic plug things, and the smallest is what I need. The earphones that came with my current phone don't offer that choice. Trouble is, they include a microphone for if you want to make a call.
ISP matters more than fibre
The OpenReach vans are down the street installing the new cabinet. That will reduce the non-fibre part of my internet connect to tell that a quarter of what it was.
I am not quite sure whether I need it. I switched ISP a few months ago. Some hardware at the exchange must have changed: I am getting three times the usable speed, and it hardly drops at peak time. My old ISP did a good job for a long time, but their service quality plummeted as streaming video struck.
All I can say is, ask anyone trying to sell you an internet connection what they are doing about IPv6. If they don't know what it is, if they don't have a plan. forget 'em. If they don't have a plan, if they're still supplying routers to customers which cannot handle IPv6, they're incompetent.
Re: Love that noise
Yep, seriously horrible weather moved into Lincolnshire from Cambridgeshire and the BBMF had to cancel flying. It was very severe rain in Cambridgeshire.
I think I might have seen Vera in the distance if the visibility hadn't been lousy.
You have to find the local news page for Lincolnshire to see any mention by the BBC. I haven't even seen a mention of the flash flooding except as local news. If it's not in London, it never happened...
Cold Fusion, at the time of the first claims, attracted some substantial research budgets. The potential pay-off was so high.
This is in some of the same territory.
Cold Fusion was given a good chance. There are potential pay-offs on this too, though it might not be powerful enough a thruster for station-keeping on a satellite. But the fuel supply is a limit on satellite lifetime.
This thruster will get a good chance. Results need replicating. That's all part of good science.
Re: Drive a few miles south...
Customs of Scotland do check you when you leave Scotland, to ensure you have the required amount of whisky, haggis, and porridge. If you don't, they force a White Heather Club DVD on you.
We pay Hachette for their good judgement
The traditional publisher and the author do a lot of work together that ends up giving us a better book. I am not sure that Amazon deserves a similar share for the work it does to deliver an ebook.
Hachette, and all the other traditional publishers. know they are taking risks, and giving us a better text, filtering the drivel-storm, is something they have to do to limit their risk.
Amazon doesn't do any filtering with the Kindle Direct model, and, believe me, you can see it. All you have to do is buy a few cheap ebooks and you will see it. There is a filter that comes from forcing the author to deal with the US tax system. but that's no effort for them.
It's a waste of my time to try to sell my writing through Amazon. I get better filtering from giving my stories away on fan-fiction sites. The Kindle is a nice enough tool, and Amazon run a decent, wide-ranging, internet retail operation, but no way are they a publishing company.
Dare I post a link, even a weird one? What's the point? The problem is finding stories that you like. I think that Google might matter more to authors than Amazon ever can.
You seem to be covering everything.
My prediction: you'll see this math in a proprietary video streaming service using UDP packets.
(I don't think it is tech yet. One of those little boxes plugged into your TV, something new, rather than replacing a huge installed base, that's when it will be tech.)
Re: hi-res audio bullshit
Valve or solid state, the problem when they're in the mass-market is poor design, and some elements of that aren't the same as cheap design. And since the speakers add far more bad things than a good amplifier does, that's the place that rewards careful thought.
Some things, like soundbars, can be an easy upgrade. The speakers built into a TV can, for various reasons, be not very good. There are better answers. Much better.
There's a bit too much fashion in some of the stuff people are swooning over, there always has been.There's a place for a Bluetooth connection, but some things sound more than a little silly. It's fashion.
Re: The benefit of being slightly tone deaf?
I'm inclined to agree, though I put my limits down to age and Massey-Ferguson. But a decent amp and speakers makes a difference I can still hear, and that is what matters. I don't want to throw money at the problems without thinking, but I can hear the difference spending a few quid more on the speakers can make.
Some of the stuff they're selling these days is a rip-off. Like everything, the bottom end of the price range has to be almost zero-cost to cover the sales and distribution cost and leave a profit. I'd like some of my money to be spent on my ears.
Re: Hasty ?? @ Titus Technophobe
The whole thing is looking a bit odd, but I'll concede the need for some legislation. I'm not lawyer enough to be sure whether RIPA provides any real protection for anyone. I don't have much confidence in the current government and their intentions. If there's a way to screw us, they'll use it.
But I do know you're missing one thing. This law will operate until 2016, and then it stops working. That's a good idea for this sort of emergency law. That doesn't mean we have to live with it until then. The next parliament could replace it before then, no legal problem at all. We need to watch they don't amend away the sunset clause, but whoever wins the election could start work on the long-term replacement as soon as they take over. And I hope we elect a government that is willing to listen to us, as well as the Americans.
I hope that your trusty Playmonaut is now demanding unionisation?
He'll only fly if he isn't charged.
I used to be a Talk-Talk customer.
I came to doubt their competence. In the last year or so of my time with them, while there was no throttling, is was clear that their total provision was inadequate. When everybody was home, data-rates delivered were derisory.
I switched to another ISP. The physical line suddenly delivered twice the capacity, and maintains that with real data delivered (There are small variations with time of day, but they are small). With the Rural Broadband rollout looming, I'm now not sure I will need it, but I am much more confident that the speed increase possible, on the local loop, will be matched by the ISP's network.
The Stock Market seems to like Tiscali. They don't seem to care whether an ISP actually delivers. They're just hunting short-term profit, and that has become the business Tiscali is in.
There's something odd about the whole story. The staffer whose name is on the scripts which leaked night have been dropped in it by the people on the IT side. This might have been a how a script was passed on to a translator, in the past, without any problems. Why was it different this time?
Re: It's for kids
You might be surprised how complicated some of the "for kids" stuff can be. In a culture where anyone under 18 is classed, in significant ways, as still a child, such sneers are misleading. How much drama even tried to deal with the issues of loss and aging which permeate a Doctor Who story such as "The Girl Who Waited"?
Yet you say it is "just for kids".
It does seem odd that Google doesn't tell the BBC the relevant name, but that comes down to the reputation of the site. Some news sites have, for a long time, removed problematic comments, leaving a placeholder marker. And if a news site did that, shouldn't the commenter ask the news site first?
But if you might trust the BBC enough to talk to them first, that isn't a universal. What do you do about 4chan?
I'll venture that, when this settles down, reputable news sites might take down comments. But there will be a lot where your only chance is Google. And rich and poor alike will be prohibited from sleeping under the bridges of Paris.
Re: I name this ship White Elephant.....
Carries sonar, carries anti-sub helicopters, carries a 4.5-inch gun, and some will carry Harpoon (why not all?), so it's not that useless. It's optimised for air-defence, and could end up with Tomahawk as well, but it does look as though paying for the carriers has compromised the outfitting of the Type 45 ships.
The carriers aren't quite tail wagging the dog, but add the plan for new Trident subs, and you wonder if the Admirals and Politicians are trying to compensate for certain anatomical defects.
It sounds as though Chris has his own copy of "Ignition" by John D. Clark.
Re: Bamboo pickup arm
My reaction to what you say is to suggest that what matters here is the distortion introduced by the loudspeaker. We can throw away frequency information—with my ears you can throw away a lot—but there are other elements in the signal, and the designers don't look at the whole picture. Loudspeakers are the place with the big distortions, and the fixes are the low-hanging fruit of audio technology.
My late father, who had terrible hearing, did get something from digital surround sound. It helped him distinguish the background sound from the speech. And sometimes the sound of footsteps had a direction which mattered, and which he could hear.
That just needed an amplifier and a bunch of ordinary speakers. but it was timing information that plain old stereo systems lose.
It's possible that a battery-power device could pick up radiated mains hum from the surroundings, but blocking such interference is part of designing professional recording equipment, things like using a balanced line microphone lead.
But what will your digital recording module do to these very low strength signals that do get through the screening?
It may be that the Police still record on cassette tapes because they know it doesn't lose that background signal. And so they can give a court an assurance. Their recorded evidence can be tested with tests that are known to the court system. But how much does the digital recording technology already used by the news media fit in with those tests?
If I were a future Edward Snowden, I'd be worried more about whether the compressor program had been hacked. Can you trust the companies which make the hardware? Have we already forgotten the Sony BMG copy protection rootkit scandal?
There are things we don't know, like just what Microsoft was saying and doing before they went to court, and why US law-enforcement doesn't seem to be involved.
Also, proving something technical to the satisfaction of the judge could be a safeguard, but what does the judge know about computers in general?
We have a rather one-sided story here. I suspect from the article, though I am not sure, that I used to use this service. The example domain names are suggestive, but the operation I used cut off a whole bunch of cheap services. and since I didn't need that sort of service I didn't switch.
There's too many unknowns here.
There have been similar Great White Hopes in the past. Not all have worked out.
I shall believe this when I see it in Lidl.
Well, maybe that is an exaggeration.
That's more of August pinned down: World Science Fiction Convention, sleep, and wake in time for Doctor Who ( nearly a dead cert for a Hugo Award this year)
Re: Google maps? Really?
I've come across stories of real-time data effectively warning of such things as Police speed traps because of their effects on traffic flow.
Re: A quick couple of points ...
There are two rival measures. It's either fuel/distance or distance/fuel, and we're used to miles per gallon.
Using the inverse, and plotting against vehicle weight, gives a straight-line graph. Getting that straight line needs a bit of clever math to get the best fit. but it's a simple end result. You can't get that simple result from miles per gallon.
I think the alternative used in Europe is liters per hundred kilometers. We buy our petrol in liters now, and if I wanted to figure out how much petrol I needed, calling 100km 60 miles would be near enough, with a margin. Since we don't buy petrol in gallons any more, and we don't measure distances in km, either way it's more complicated than it needs to be.
All the practical reviews of electric, even the sometimes risible Top Gear report of a couple of years ago, seem to agree that recharging is the big problem. They made a joke out of Clarkson and Co. hanging around in Lincoln while the battery recharged, but it's a real problem.
Around 15 years ago there was some of the same problem with LPG, a cleaner alternative to petrol and diesel. It had already been around as an alternative for a long time, but getting filled up needed a bit of planning ahead.
Most people living in the countryside work in towns.
If I have a job in the countryside I might be working with a machine that is worth more than the house I live in, and spends most of the year in a shed.
I do get usable broadband, but the mobile coverage around here is getting patchy. I suspect the phone companies don't know that trees grow, and they are bigger than they were when the coverage was calculated.
I would venture that the bean-counter knows about as much about computer programming as the BOFH and PFY know about bookkeeping.
A spreadsheet is pretty close to a physical accounts book in appearance, It's not a dreadful general-purpose tool. But it's limited in scale. I wouldn't use Excel, but a spreadsheet for storing data such as the details of a video collection should work.
Re: What's the problem?
I am inclining to the view that Amazon are a little crazy. After all, they're trying not to sell me books.
Re: How about some background?
That sort of distinction certainly used to exist in the UK. If you were a photographer was held by who owned the film. Not a perfect rule, but a simple enough distinction between a newspaper employee and a member of the public. In the age of digital cameras, the difference is less clear.
What matters most of the time is the licensing of the copyright. Why should a social media site need to own the copyright? All they need is a license to use the material?
Some of the stuff, on both sides of the arguments, seems to come from lawyers who know very little of what the technology does.
And at least some of these claims struggle to be consistent with statute law.
The details vary, but the same things keep on happening about different material. The US requirement to register copyright to get any protection ended in the 1970, but you still see cases of companies claiming your work isn't protected, (US registration adds to the protection: for one thing, it proves a date for the work)
And the "(c)" doesn't work. Use "©".
A scythe is cheaper, but people expect you to grin a lot and speak in small caps.
Maybe good for commuters, not so good for the rest of us. Locally, the Amazon Locker sustem seems optimised for motorists, but it is not compulsory.
Mind you, I'm not sure I trust Amazon, not when they're using their search, sales, and stock system as a weapon in a dispute with a publisher. Amazon not wanting to sell books? What is the world coming to?
Re: Billy 'No Mates' here
Be like Dad, keep Mum.
You forgot the cluster of strange links at the end of the page, with those tempting but misleading headlines.
5 Ways to watch Eastenders on your mobile phone.
The Politician who thinks his family is an "Embellishment".
England Football team wins a matchstick game!
8 Surprising Ways to Delete Your Data!
The big solution to all your Windows problems, from Finland!
Amazon stops selling books!
Remember the wow-factor in even the first, flawed, Hubble images. I'm not sure that the "16-times-sharper" is the only important factor, but wow!
Think about it
So it's not the Bitcoin technology that is the problem, it's the people using it?
Does this new trick really change anything?
Re: @Rupert Fiennes
There's an argument that solar-electric is close to competing with coal. Whether you get the power when you want it is the big issue, and it hinges on some assumptions about future costs of fossil fuel. But all those cars recharging while parked up for the day would certainly ease some of the wrong-time problem, and the pollution benefit can be pretty big.
(OK, it's the Chinese. They've built something about four times as long as HS2 in under three years. They seem rather better at these big projects than we are, though I am not sure I would want to be getting in their way.)
The term "public domain" has several different meanings. And there is a distinct meaning in US copyright law which seems to confuse a lot of people elsewhere. In the UK, "in the public domain" means (mostly) that the work is widely known. It's nothing to do with copyright. It's about privacy and such.
Re: A dev's p.o.v
Thanks for this summary.
I can go for bad planning being a part of this.
I write stuff. It's interesting to look at a character and wonder why I've inserted yet another default man, and often not too hard to change. But you've explained why that change is a huge amount of work in a computer game.
Re: Understandable I guess
That particular game got ported over and released through some download channels, early this year. I don't recall seeing any mention of it until this row exploded into the open. Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD is the title.
I'm surprised it took this long. There's nothing in the genetic memory thing to justify it, and a heck of a lot of women want to play computer games.
Maybe they should check the office fridge?
Re: "Add an extra mesh option with the same animation rigs, and job done"
There's plenty of modeling, for both games and comics, which leaves me with a feeling that people do their research from porn videos.
Re: non story
Oh, it can all be made quite reasonable.
The trouble is that, especially when social media get involved, a great many people start putting out sexist insults. Ask why Ubisoft have done this, and you will be insulted, but only if you're using an apparently female identity.
There is an Assassin's Creed game which has a woman as protagonist. There have been women as recurring characters. So the argument isn't about doing something new. There's a suspicion that the people who made the decisions have a bias. And there is a lot of growing resentment, on both sides. There are people expressing opinions, and there are teenagers.
Some people have been getting verbose about Tomb Raider, and I think a part of the whole issue is that the technology is good enough for the game protagonists to pass as people. Recent instances of these long-running series are becoming quite movie-like, and we want something more than a string of action scenes. Stories matter.
In some of this I am reminded of such things as the Wing Commander series.
But go look at what's on TV. In many ways, something like GTA5, while it makes the criminals the protagonists, is a long way behind TV Drama. How long before we get something that does for games what Lynda La Plante did for TV crime drama?
Re: IPv6 in LACNIC
The only way I can explain the no-apparent-plan attitude from ISPs over IPv6 is basic incompetence.
They should be supplying customers with compatible hardware. They should be installing compatible hardware. When I was still running Win XP, that had IPv6 as an option, which is the epitome of something not being new.
I used to use an ISP who didn't admit to knowing what IPv6 was
My current ISP supplied me with a router which I use. They do have a plan, but they don't need to implement it yet. They have done trials and give instructions for setting up the router. It still looks a bit hairy as an exercise, but it's one of the reasons I picked them.
Even without using IPv6, switching ISPs gave me vastly improved performance. IPv6 looks like a useful indicator for ISP competence.
The whole sex-in-advertising thing is provoking commentary, and those pretty girls are part of it. Do we remember the girl or the product?
And why do people think we guys are going to fall for that trick again?
I can think of worse things, but it's a combination of visual noise and signals of a rather unpleasant attitude lurking within society.
What would Sheldon say?
Re: Hang on...
Red Adair certainly seemed to have ingenious uses for explosives, even figured out how to use them as a spanner. And the movie The Wages of Fear has explosives being delivered to the burning oil well.
This looks a little more like a WW2 German antiaircraft weapon intended to wreck a plane with the air-blast generated by a fuel-air explosion. They ended up with this sort of effect, but planes were not a good target.
I reckon that a bush fire is just too big.
Some satellites, booked for Proton launch, are going to be delayed.
It's not so easy to put a satellite on a different launcher, because of the physical structure that supports the satellite, and the control systems.
And who has launchers spare?
If somebody wants an extra Falcon launch after this, it will take time to build everything, and there is the problem of time on the pad.
There isn't going to be a sudden change.
Google Maps updated. Check.
It isn't quite working here yet, and I have just used the bus service it doesn't know about. I can see the bus stop sign through the window.
Google Earth on my PC does show all the bus stops.
And, serious caution, there are timetable changes coming into effect this weekend.
This is no surprise
Is it even possible in Britain that a piece of boffinry like this would not be called a sonic screwdriver?
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