According to Forbes the Microsoft tax bill for 2017 was $3.3 Billion
48 posts • joined 9 Oct 2007
Microsoft's cloud keeps printing cash, Surface not so much as Windows giant pockets $119m profit a day
The record shows I took the blows, and did it... Huawei: IT titan will start tackling GCHQ security gripes from June
No Backdoor just an open front door
Looks like the problem is not that Huawei have actually installed back doors into their devices, its just that the security as implemented is so full of holes that it would be easy to "hack" a device at a later time and install something naughty. Which is probably what the Imperial Kingdom (and all other agencies with letters for names) have actually been up to.
the worst for customer service
After spending 4, 500 euros on 4 imacs and the funny 3 year warranty the apple store (a premier apple store) wouldnt deliver them 5km to us without an extra payment and when we turned up to the store to get them they said they werent even there but somewhere else (another store)
Will never buy apple again despite what the over pampered creatives ask for
Re: iPhone was a big risk, iPad was a big risk.
No, people buy these Apple products because they are fashion accessories, and its cool to have a little apple logo on things. Not because they´re better. Is an Ipod really better than a generic MP3 player is the sound any better (hint they almost all use the same chips inside)?
It´s exactly the same with Nike sports wear, Rayban sunglasses, D&G handbags etc. etc. etc.
The sheep will always buy something that other sheep deem to be cool.
Hooked because of StarTrek
That star trek game from the 70´s is probably the single biggest reason most of us got into IT. I remember being exposed to it aged 13 on an NCR mini in 1978. My first hands on Computer experience. Six months later I was self taught BASIC programmer trying to get it working on my (second hand) PET that my father bought me as a birthday present that christmas.
Ah those were the days.
After a career in IT I´m now involved teaching in schools, and it saddens me to see the soft fluffy rubbish that passes as ICT lessons. None of the nurturing the spark that we had. I hope the proposed syllabus changes brings that back. People sneer at the PEEK and POKE we had to use. But those two commands taught you more about the inner workings of a computer than you can possibly imagine.
Apple's Ego really has got the better of them this time. Fighting a patent war is one thing, but now taking on a component manufacturer, and not only that a component manufacturer that you rely on is whole new level of stupidity.
All it would take is Samsung to pull the supply of some key component and suddenly Saint Steve would have no Jesus Phones / Fondleslabs ,or what ever Samsung decided to hit, to sell.
Why does only 3rd world countries complain?
Is it because their security services don't have the kit that the USA/UK et al have?
After all can you seriously see the over paraniod UK intellegence services allowing a commercial encrypted service that they can't listen in to?
Mines the one with the tin foil hat
The bigger issue here is the US government has discovered a new tool to control the bits of the internet it doesn't approve of. Namely muscling the Mastercard and Visa boys.
It first did this to clamp down on the foreign online gambling sites, that were stealing all the lovely tax revenue from the vegas Mob, and now Wikileaks has pissed it off it's using the card people to try to cut off the funding there. This tactic is much less blatant than simply blocking sites which would immediately generate huge negative publicity and probably generate a few freedom of speech legal cases, but is just as effective
Who or what will be next?
Flawed Business model
Another ISP moaning about their flawed "sell it cheaper than their competitors" business model. When will these guys realise that consumers will pay more to get more quality.
The supermarkets do this quite happily (Tesco's have a value range, the standard range and a premium range). People are happy to pay extra for extra services/quality
I have followed the project from the start and am amazed at the release footage, truely awesome.
This is the sort of typically British on a shoestring, sticky tape and luck project that I thought had died out with John Noakes and a pair of Val's old knickers.
Guy's I will a raise a pint to you tonight, and the plucky little playmonaut, and hope in an alcoholic moment you scribble something down on the back of a fag packet that can become Vulture 2
The longest suicide note in history
EddieD: I think you´ll find if you look at the very very small print in the contracts, thats its a 50:1 contention ratio on consumer ADSL circuits. So its no suprise that the Networks started to creak when streaming services came along.
This snake oil aproach of selling the same bandwidth to 50 different people has been going on since the days of dial ups, (or in those days fit one modem for every xx customers).
ISP´s should start to sell on the quality of the service now and not on the lowest price. I am more than happy to pay extra for smoothly streamed video´s and quick torrent connections. But my granny who only read her emails only wants a reliable connection at a cheap price. One size does not fit all and the ISP´s have to accept that or go bust. The price of wholesale bandwidth can not fall much lower, most people who want a ADSL line have one, so the only way to churn customers now is lower your price (financial suicide) or be better than the competion.
Very scary, on the second anniversary of the accident a spanair plane going from Las palmas to Madrid (ie the same route in the opposite direction) had an engine explode in flight. Fortunately they managed to get to madrid on one engine.
Maintenance is obviously where a lot of cost cutting has gone on at Spanair, think I'll be paying a few extra euros to fly with someone else in future.
... and not on the list
While there are a few machines on the list that have their use listed as "Classified" it seems to me this is a very small number.
I'm guessing there are quite a few boxes in the Virginia area of the USA and the Glocestershire area of the UK that aren't on this list but would certainly be top 20 or better contenders.
Mines the one with the paranioa medication in the pocket ......
Fly the flag
Come on wave a flag for poor old Blighty, if we had a few more the Bearded one and Sur (lord) Alun, then we might not be in the hole that we are.
It could have been yanks funding this (Microsoft, Delta, Google ....) but no, it was a plucky Brit who had the vision, and the balls to put his money where his mouth is. The wright brothers may not have flown any great distance but everyone remembers them as being first. now the history books will remember the virgin VSS Enterprise.
Now all we have to do is get rid of the scotish numpty and his cronnies and return to climate where taking risks is cool .....
The usual noise
Let me start by saying I don´t work for the BBC (I don´t even live in the UK anymore - and wish iplayer was legally available to me)
The comments here are from a very small minority of users of the service, so if the BBC ignores you don´t blame them. They are doing the best they can to roll out a world beating service to the most number of users on as many platforms as is realistic given limited resources. MIllions of users are very happy with what they are doing. a few thousand are not. Sorry thats just life, You have alternatives to the XBMC ghetto you have decided to live in.
As pointed out by some posters the BBC is restricted by the copyright holders of the material not by their own rules (look to the radio version of iplayer to see the difference). Anyway if you think iplayer is a problem, have you tried to use ITV´s dismal offering recently?
As for the comment that soon all the BBC´s output will soon be available on Torrents, I have news for you 95% of it already is, youre just looking in the wrong place for it!
Sad reflection on society
I had never heard of this picture, and of course the first thing I did was google it to see what the fuss is about.
The picture itself shows nothing that virtually every under ten year old child in Europe doesn't display on a beach every summer (ie no genitals are visible)
Its a sad reflection on our society when we are now retrospectively censoring art. Where will this stop? Ruben's paintings in the national gallery getting little fig leaves added? Greek and roman statues being given pants to wear?
These people should go out and get a life, This is not a problem in the more liberated rest of Europe, where icidently they have lower levels of sex related crimes.
Been there, done that
I was a beta tester for Tiscali's attempt at doing this about 6 years ago. It too was a bi-directional via satellite service (no phone line required), and yes it did work after a fashion.
First issue was the 1.2m dish bolted to the side of my house - dont imagine for a minute you can get a sufficient strength uplink signal from a dinky sky sized dish.
Secondly just like Sky TV it was prone to the weather. Microwaves don't like going through water very much (ie cloud and rain, something we get a lot of). Yes on a normal overcast day things worked. But heavy rain did knock it side ways.
Finally (and I hope they don't make this mistake) at the groundstation they had a whopping great proxy/cache server inorder to minimise the backhaul requirements and to give an illusion of better performance (ie remove the additional cable based latency). Problem with this was two fold, sites that require constant refreshing ran like dogs because the cache had to be updated, and secondly sites that required a secure login got blocked by the proxy so were un-accessible.
Its the ISP's stupid
Lots of ranting about poor old Aunty Beeb, but all it is doing is providing a service that people want to use, no different from Google or Youtube or Bit torrent. The problem is still, as it always has been, with the ISP's.
For the last ten years or so the ISP's have been playing an economically stupid game of my service is better than yours and its also cheaper. An economically gravity defying trick they pulled off with old fashioned smoke and mirrors, that being ridiculously high contention ratios for the technical amongst us. An idea that was orignially cooked up in they days when you had to install modem banks for your customers to connect. (I was designing ISP and carrier networks way back then).
I don't deny contention ratios have a place in ISP economic planning, but now with streamed services the idea of one cost fits all has to change. We have to move to tiered services, and tiered costs either through bandwidth throttling, or by coming clean and telling the customer, yes you can have a 8mb/s connection for 10.99 a month but that is an average speed not an absolute (and by the way will probably only be achieved at 4am on a sunday morning), and if you want a real 8Mb/s service to watch eastenders or download Debbie does dallas its going to cost you 30.99 a month.
The confusion is that the people think the licence fee gives them a right to see Eastenders in High Def any way they want. It doesn't.
Retailers don't implement it properly
I have no problem with Verified by Visa or any other such scheme, however I do have a problem with the script kiddies that attempt to implement it on retailers websites and don't do it properly (in my experience over 50% of the time).
I'm lucky enough to be an Expat living in the sunshine, with a locally issued visa card. Sometimes I want to order stuff from the UK and thats where the problems start. The ordering process goes fine, the VbV goes fine and is passed, but then the site comes back with a declined message. This the upshot of which is the value of the now declined transaction is held as pending on my card (because Visa passed the transaction).
Having spoken to support on a couple of sites its because though VbV comes back as ok things like the postcode/address don't because some foreign banks don't verify on things like postcode (which is part of a non VbV transaction). If your going to accept VbV on a site do so, and do it properly.
Screen scraping on this scale is done by some reasonably chunky servers, surely its not beyond the intelligence of the Easyjet/Ryanair IT depts to work out the IP addresses of the servers from their logs and block them. While there might be a bit of address hoping going on, it won't be much.
Or is this all just a publicity stunt?
Mines the one with the blacklist in the pocket ......
The problem is?
Frankly unless it happens to catch me banging the neighbours cat I don't see what problem is (People will give good money for those pictures!)
If I commute into central london everyday for work, my not so pretty face is captured in public on approx. 250 different camera's and saved for posterity. Some of these camera's are open for public access on the internet (Street/traffic cams) with no-pixel blurring of faces etc.
People get a life, or move to somewhere with no technology, it a peice of harmless fun. We've exhausted the black helicopters, now its time for thong watch.....
Only themselves to blame
Sorry but the ISP´s have only themselves to blame, if they hadn´t spent the last 10 years playing the "my service is cheaper than yours" game, and insead concentrated on supplying quality at a premium over quantity then they wouldn´t be in the mess they are now. They have seen this coming for a while but done nothing about it, hoping technology advances would save them before it became a problem.
As for Auntie Beeb, as a content originator they do pay significant chunks of the licence fee money to several major ISP´s to put the Data on the internet in the first place (I have been involved in the sale of several these pipes to the BBC) so they are paying their fair share. Its now up to the end users and their mickey mouse ISP´s to pay theirs.
Internet bandwidth has been a commodity with a falling price for too long now, sorry to tell you all but like house prices this is something that is going to under go a "correction" in the near future.
I have in recent years worked in technical sales for two of the global big 5 Backbone providers. Eight or so years ago they started to Multicast enable their networks. However neither of them launched Multicast as a product/service simply because they couldn´t figure out how to make money out of it in an environment where the cost per megabit was falling.
Yes it enables them to save bandwidth on the backbone, but at the moment they are charging content providers per MB for the high bandwidth connection to the servers, which they would lose. The little ISP´s whine that their backbones are clogged with streaming data. But someone is still paying to put that data on a netowrk somewhere in the first place.
Install Real Player instead
... and anyway you'd have to be totally deranged to install any Apple written software on a windows machine. Cross platform has never been their strong point, and don't even get me started on what several incarnations of i-tunes have done to my pc's, So much so I threw the bloody i-pods away and bought generic MP3's instead.
Mines the one with "Apples are not the only fruit" on the back ........
The broadband drug
I must have broadband, I must have broadband, I must have more broadband .... ok little boy here's a nice shiny 45 Meg line, much better than that little 2 Meg one.
Of course what the dealer (woops sorry ISP) didn't tell you was it was exactly the same as what you had before, a 50:1 contended connection going into the same back haul from the the exchange all they did was magically increase the speed between your house and the exchange. Its all smoke and mirrors.
Ultimately if you want a decent connection you are going to have to pay for it. Tomorrow I could have installed in my a house a 45MB internet connection with a contention ratio of better than 5:1 that would actually give me 45MB in both directions. Its called a T3 connection, and several ISP's in the UK could/would quite happily sell me one including BT, the downside is the cost (approx 1500-2000 GBP a month).
Wake up consumers there is no such thing as free lunch, if you want something you have to pay for it, and until you get off your crack head approach to broadband the ISP's(dealers) will continue to sell you junk and then whine about doing so.
PS. here's a tip sign: up to BT's business broadband service, it costs more, but the contention ratio is much lower (only 20:1 last time I checked) so you're more likely to get what they are selling you
The one true IT diet ......
Of course with a career in IT, my chosen dietry preference is Beer! (Real ale not that Fizzy lager stuff). A food group in its own right, full of complex vitamins and minerals (esp Guiness).
Why? because like a lot of veggies in the presence of a bacon sarnie, I occasionally slip from the true path and have a steak and chips with my beer.
For the strange
I remember learning LISP at University in the 80's, in those days LISP used to stand for Lots of Indecipherable Silly Parenthesises and created un-maintainable code even by those bad old days standards, that only the very seriously strange could understand (or seriously drunk but thats another student programming story ..........)