* Posts by Mage

5443 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Mythbuntu busted as last two devs working on media centre distro quit

Mage
Silver badge

Re: That would be MediaPortal then?

MediaPortal is only win7 and later.

MediaPortal is no use for Linux. The MythTV is.

Kodi is primarily for streaming.

MythTV is primarly for Satellite cards and DVB-TV Sticks etc and can work VERY well on Linux. (ProgDVB on Windows is superior to any MS MediaCentre version for Broadcast and even does MHEG5 Interactive), but no use for Linux, and not free. However I'd pay something for decent Linux TV reception software that just works, like ProgDVB or other packages on Windows.

The problem with Linux is setting up the PCI satellite cards and USB TV sticks in the first place.

Is there a future for Windows with OEM sales of Win7 now ended?

0
0

Apple, Mozilla kill API to deplete W3C battery-snitching standard

Mage
Silver badge
Happy

Apple and Mozilla are leading the charge away

Good, this was a daft proposal.

I'm encouraged by the sudden breakout of common sense by those two, who haven't demonstrated much lately.

4
0

Google makes it to third base with Home digital assistant

Mage
Silver badge

Re: manipulating Google search results again?

I think Randell Monroe is the expert on that?

Or maybe Mrs Robinson.

Or Black Hat.

0
0
Mage
Silver badge
Coat

Re: These devices are game changers

There are 1 0 types of people.

1
1
Mage
Silver badge
Big Brother

It's evil

But so is the Amazon Echo.

I'm baffled why anyone thinks these "spies" in the home are a good idea.

They are not much better voice control than 20 years ago and horribly inflexible too.

24
7

Any questions? No, not you again at the back, please God no

Mage
Silver badge
Alien

Re: I LIKE the takeoff and landing - they are the good bits.

Yes, at least mildly interesting, the rest is uncomfortable and boring. It doesn't help those with chronic congestion, skin conditions, breathing issues etc that the aircraft are not fully pressurised. You need to drink stuff with water to avoid dehydration, with risk of drinking too much or not enough.

Wiki stuff on cabin pressure

"In a typical commercial passenger flight, the cabin altitude is programmed to rise gradually from the altitude of the airport of origin to a regulatory maximum of 8,000 ft (2,400 m). This cabin altitude is maintained while the aircraft is cruising at its maximum altitude and then reduced gradually during descent until the cabin pressure matches the ambient air pressure at the destination.[citation needed]"

IMO this little mentioned fact (apart from how little space there is and insufficient humidity for those used to the Emerald Isle, and how horrid airports and airport security is) goes a long way to explain why I hate air travel. I don't worry about safety, my car trip to the supermarket may be more dangerous.

10
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Dead elephant. MS-Office ripoff

I can't resist asking those sort of questions. My last boss deliberately took me to foreign vendor meetings when he wanted to unsettle the vendor before signing (or not signing) the contract.

Engineers are not so welcome at meetings when their own company is selling.

25
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Fear of flying

I don't have a fear of flying, I just hate it.

I do occasionally have a slight nervousness about take-off or landing when they seem unusual.

I've occasionally bought a ticket, but always had the expense refunded. I hate flying so much, I can't see why I'd ever want to spend my own money on it.

10
0

Anti-ultrasound tech aims to foil the dog-whistle marketeers

Mage
Silver badge

Or

A low pass filter on inputs (mic) and outputs (speakers).

The actual transmission channels can't actually carry true ultrasonic signals as they are limited to less than 22 to 24 kHz.

FM Radio to under 15kHz

6
0

Your weekends may be safe, admins – IT giants tout 'zero outage' tech

Mage
Silver badge
Coat

"meet certain criteria,"

Ha Ha Ha

Laudable but hilarious.

11
0

Windows 10 market share stalls after free upgrade offer ends

Mage
Silver badge

Re: As long as Win10 continues to be a piece of spyware...

Bought two Lenovo Laptops this week, they came with Win7 pro "free" if you ordered Win 10 pro,

Whatever about the "regular" versions, Vista Home and Win 10 Home at least seem like crippleware.

I see MS has only just ceased OEM Win 7 sales.

One at least will "dual boot" to Linux Mint + Mate, I hope (no SSD).

1
0
Mage
Silver badge

"Windows is far easier to use for non technical people."

Used to be true, maybe.

But a properly set up Linux Mint, with Mate, Redmond theme and Wine for a couple of programs etc is MUCH easier for XP users and even Vista / Win 7 users than Win 8.x and Win 10.

Not sure if Sage and payroll runs under Wine, but very few home users and small business users not doing accounts / payroll need Windows any more.

Games? The appropriate graphics cards can cost more than an Xbox One or PS4. PS4 seems to be winning there.

5
0

A British phone you're not embarrassed to carry? You heard that right

Mage
Silver badge

Re: With its first in-house design. Bet it isn't.

Maybe they sketched out the case and logo.

Depends what they mean by design. I did a 4G (not Wimax or LTE) VOIP only "handset" using a PCMCIA modem using a handmade case and catalogue industrial PCBs in 2007. In a sense I designed it.

Did they really pick the chips, layout a PCB etc, assemble it, debug, do the approvals etc?

0
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: how "British" the company is

It's not UK software, it's Electronics design isn't in UK, parts and assembly are not UK.

But maybe some people think Roberts Radio is UK (Chinese OEM designed and built, badge / brand is owned by Glen Dimplex conglomerate). Or that Bush is British.

2
0
Mage
Silver badge
Coat

re: is likely to be unchanged

Because it's UK marketing, not really a UK phone, (but then I think Apple phones are barely American, though they do more designing than WileyFox who are really outsourcing the HW/SW design and perhaps only having some input on the cosmetics).

0
2

Standing out from the crowd with an Android phone? You and 90 per cent of the market

Mage
Silver badge

Profit and Apple

Only matters to Apple Shareholders, and indirectly to how much the buyer is over paying.

To shops, accessory makers, IT support, App developers, Malvertisers, black hats, people wanting support, it's market share.

Perhaps people are realising that Apple is almost x2 overpriced for what you get. Despite having only 13% of market, they have maybe about 70% of the profits. It's not due to especially clever manufacturing, though the glue helps reduce cost.

4
0

Brexit may not mean Brexit at all: UK.gov loses Article 50 lawsuit

Mage
Silver badge

Re: Buy British. Simple.

"This is not the Victorian era when British goods were made from British steel, using British machines powered by British coal."

Even then it was involving exploiting Indian and Egyptian cotton growers, whose production was increased due to collapse of the Slave produced US Cotton at time of USA Civil War. There are many other examples.

6
2

Brexit judgment could be hit for six by those crazy Supreme Court judges, says barrister

Mage
Silver badge

Re: Thursday's explosive anti-Brexit judgment

If it was Government intention to have no Parliamentary vote they needed to make that clear, it's not that Smooth Newt thinks so.

Ultimately it's not about Exit or Remain, but is UK ruled by Referendum, whim of PM or Parliament?

26
0

Dark matter? More like diet matter: Super-light axions may solve universe's mass riddle

Mage
Silver badge
Alien

1922 or 1977?

Axions on Wikipedia

The axion is a hypothetical elementary particle postulated by the Peccei–Quinn theory in 1977 to resolve the strong CP problem in quantum chromodynamics (QCD)

(I'm nearly sure it's time and not colour)

Or there is some other explanation for the cosmic observations and/or solution to the strong CP problem, which might be unrelated anyway.

1
0

MacBook headphone hell

Mage
Silver badge
Paris Hilton

Re: @Wibble

"because people who believe the DAC has a real influence on audio quality will use Lightning or USB-C for audio when they have headphones with a built in DAC even when they have a 3.5mm connector at their disposal."

I have a nice bridge I can sell you cheap.

2
1
Mage
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: more headphones with their own DAC and amp will be available

Which given space, cost, battery will generally be inferior than built in DAC & Amp in a phone, tablet, laptop, which will have a DAC and Amp ANYWAY for the built-in speakers. Even 10m of suitable analogue audio cable makes no difference to quality. No headphone cable makes any difference to analogue.

The idea of removing analogue 3.5mm jack has nothing to do with thinness or quality. It's about product differentiation. It's stupid. The extra cost of earphone DAC and Amp is more than cost saving of jack socket. The Bluetooth stereo earphones are even more stupid than wired unless you really need wireless, battery life and additional degradation due to re-encoding.

14
3

Ghost of DEC Alpha is why Windows is rubbish at file compression

Mage
Silver badge

Re: So why not create a new v2 compression scheme?

Indeed. NTFS itself has already different versions. I think NT3.51 can't read an XP / Win 2K format. I forget when the major change was.

1
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Obvious bull

Yes, given that that there was other CPU specific code and HAL.

Actually too, the original NT was for 32 bit Alpha. The 64Bit NT4.0 was for Alpha 64 only and came out later after regular Alpha 32 NT4.0. I never saw the 64bit Alpha of Win2K, though I may have existed, it's not on my MSDN collection.

1
1

HPE: Wanna revive that support deal for your software? Ha ha ha, har

Mage
Silver badge
Pirate

Renegotiation is the issue, this is:

"but they will have to pay the support costs from the entire time their deal has been lapsed as well as a 50 per cent "reactivation" charge."

How much do you pay if you are a new customer?

So to get a renewal you have to pay the fee for a period when there was no deal? Sounds like the Motor tax office or a protection racket!

8
0

Sweden axes 700MHz spectrum sale over 'national security' fears

Mage
Silver badge

Say goodbye to good Mobile coverage.

What unmitigated rubbish.

It's a cellular system. The 700MHz is actually too low for decent cell size and control.

Build more 900 / 1800 / 2100 masts. Gives more coverage AND more speed / capacity.

The 800 MHz sell off was about raising revenue and letting Mobile operators do low capacity cheaply on existing masts. The 700 MHz is even worse and is driven by US Multinationals wanting royalties for the chips and Regulators hopeful for revenue.

700MHz for mobile only made sense in Analogue and GSM and CDMA-1 Voice only days.

3
0

More movie and TV binge-streaming sites join UK banned list

Mage
Silver badge

Re: Fix content availability and usability, and "piracy" will mostly disappear

I agree, adverts on subscription only channels (e.g. Sky) is an insult. Separate issue.

3
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Thanks, MPAA

It's not Kodi itself though, but 3rd party modules/plugs, pre-installed on the boxen, which makes them illegal in Ireland under "Theft of service laws". The Cable company never wants cable boxen sellers to be prosecuted under that law because of the maximum penalty (about €6000 and/or 6months), instead they sue the sellers for copyright violation, because no limit and then they not the state get the money. The just sue the box user for full cable TV sub back till they last had one or moved in, which actually isn't unreasonable compared to TV licence fines etc.

0
0
Mage
Silver badge

Two kinds of pirates.

The serious kind are the copyright contravening providers, NOT the consumers.

In the high street or local market or at trade fair, which has goods seized?

1) The purchasers

OR

2) The sellers?

2
0

Apple urges court to hurry up with hearing Galway data centre objection

Mage
Silver badge

I'm puzzled

There are loads of more suitable sites and even empty ones. Not posh enough for Apple?

1
0

Cloudflare ordered by judge to help unmask two website owners

Mage
Silver badge
Pirate

Peer Review

Yet perhaps half the papers are rubbish, because the peer review is absolutely rubbish.

"Elsevier is just a commercial publisher."

No, commercial publishers PAY the writers. Elsevier behaves like a Vanity house. They are charging the writers, providing poor peer review (the peer reviewers usually are not paid by journals!) and overcharging readers and especially researchers for access.

The charges to readers might be justified if they where Marvel, Netflix etc, or paid for quality peer review but still it would be wrong as they don't pay writers. Elsevier is in a dominant position and stifling research. Boycott publishing on them or paying to read.

Elsevier doesn't pay for the research either which is a LOT more expensive than writing for Mills & Boone.

So who are the pirates, the bandits?

13
0

Cheap, lousy tablets are killing the whole market says IDC

Mage
Silver badge

Cheap or very Cheap and rubbish

I got a cheap 7" tablet (less than £60). 1G RAM, 16G Flash (11G free), Andriod 5.1, 800 * 1280 IPS, 2MP Bluetooth 4.0 with 4000mah Battery. It's fine.

Cheaper seem to be junk:

The "Cheap" Tablets at £25 to £40 seem to be 0.5G RAM Flash 4G to 8G (1G to 3G Free), Andriod 4.1 to 4.4, 600 x 1024 (NOT IPS), 1100mAH to 4000mAH Battery. Some €99 in Tesco Lenovo and Lidl seem to be almost this bracket. Two sons have had ones in this bracket that the touch screen broke.

So there are a lot of "impulse buy" priced Tablets that give tablets a bad name, that no doubt is affecting all sales?

I can understand why some people might pay the Apple premium for an iPad, but is growth on Fire fuelled by Amazon's marketing? They promote their own products on landing page and in search and suggestions. Do people realise it's just a "crippled Android" locked to Amazon, no better than some cheaper Android tablets? It's not a real "Kindle" either.

1
0
Mage
Silver badge

Cheapies?

Yet Apple is very expensive for the spec.

The Amazon Fire and Fire HD are expensive compared to similar spec non-name Android and are a "crippled" Android, locked to Amazon, no Playstore. Yet Amazon apps are available for Android.

So the sales ranking shows that Marketing and Perception are more important than price.

7
0

Hypersonic cruise missile scores US$175m DARPA cash

Mage
Silver badge
Flame

Re: as a rocket system is much cheaper!

It's maybe not about cost. If you don't have to carry the oxidant for the fuel (rocket motors), then either you have more range, or more payload or smaller craft. Or some compromise mix of those.

7
0

A successor to Mirai? Newly discovered malware aims to create fresh IoT botnet

Mage
Silver badge

Telnet alternatives

Or run a home VPN server on <any user chosen port not blocked by ISP / web cafe / university> :)

0
0

Pluck-filled platter-stuff: Bold disk drive makers fatten up

Mage
Silver badge

I have some quite new PCs with "full height" bays (twice CD/DVD Rom). I have full height MFM HDD in the attic too.

Is it 3"?

If so, then why not have a horizontal spindle 6" long with platter diameter between than in a 2.5" and 3.5" drive. Maybe have 15,000 RPM and stripe + parity across sets of four or five platters.

0
0

Boffins predict web scams with domain registration data

Mage
Silver badge

AI?

It sounds nearly doable with a regex based script ...

0
1

Boffin's anti-worm bot could silence epic Mirai DDoS attack army

Mage
Silver badge

"prompt the user to reboot"

How? The user would only "see" anything if they go to an Administrative web page, if there is one. If the gadget uses an "App" powered by a 3rd party server, then producing such a prompt would be difficult.

1
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Sci Fi has become a reality

"Snow Crash"? That's 1992. The Internet is older than that and Websites were appearing that year.

Ha, it was in Brunner's "Shockwave Rider" 1975.

"tapeworms", remote hacking, fake identities, Ritalin type drugging of the population.

6
0

Uber drivers entitled to UK minimum wage, London tribunal rules

Mage
Silver badge

Can't survive this in UK

Nor anywhere else with EU or EU like employment and tax laws.

"how about someone finally getting round to challenging Apple about their refusal to honour the statutory 2 year warranty on consumer electronics?"

Fined in Italy, if Apple retail then they have to comply with SOGA in all of EU and many other places. Two years is the minimum it should "work" for the liability is 4 to 6 years for any claims or consequential damages, depending on Country. Covers incorrect description literature, adverts, website or box. All have to accurately describe the product. Design faults, manufacturing defects, mysterious failures or wearing out in "reasonable" usage. Since the battery isn't user replaceable consumable, they have to cover it. If it was easily popped out then they could call it a consumable with no warranty. The charger, cables, earphones etc supplied with phone OR separately BY Apple have same SOGA as the phone. Only things like light bulbs or user replaceable battery would be exempt from two years, though they would have to be fit for purpose.

Similarly it has to be "fit for purpose", i.e. it should work as well as any phone for actual phone calls, held in any normal fashion, without the earphones.

5
0
Mage
Silver badge

Re: How to classify workers

The being an Employee factors out way the Self Employed factors, so to be sure of winning Uber would have to have almost no characteristics of being an Employer. Uber is Taxi operator operating by piece work / bodyshop. It will be travesty of justice and morally wrong if they win on appeal.

5
2
Mage
Silver badge

Re: Will this do anything...

Google is one of the Uber backers. The low price undercuts operations that have to run at a profit. They are backing it to get the user details, routes and times. ALL the App data is kept. I'd be amazed if Google isn't getting a copy.

So this is a con on two levels. The only flexibility the drivers have is to refuse pickups. That isn't affected by the ruling despite Uber's claims. Uber otherwise controls the driver and price. It is piece work. The fact that it uses software is a means to an end, not the end (selling taxi rides and slurping all the data) the App just makes it all cheaper to run and store the data than if they were rolling out a voice phone up taxi / hackney service (not the same thing originally). So Uber is taking 25% for running an automated version of a taxi company and keeping all the valuable user/route/time data. The drivers only know about their individual fares. They are not managing, co-ordinating, marketing nor storing the data. Just accepting the piece work or turning it away.

No doubt Uber will go to the highest court, because otherwise their exploitation is exposed. It will be a terrible travesty of justice if they win. Is it worth it to exploit the drivers to undercut existing taxi operations? Otherwise Uber would be marketing their service to existing taxi companies.

5
0
Mage
Silver badge
Devil

So called Tech

Uber, AirBnB etc are not tech companies, but regular Taxi and B&B booking services using apps/Internet instead of phone.

They are exploitive. Unsurprisingly not only are Uber Drivers working for Uber, but people renting out their place "significantly" rather than 2 weeks once a year need planning permission for change of use.

Deception is common to all these Internet based classified, services etc.

69
3

Samsung are amateurs – NASA shows how you really do a battery fire

Mage
Silver badge

Re: Only 96 batteries

Gasoline needs oxygen, the batteries don't.

Also your two gallon estimation sounds low unless the Tesla cars have really rubbish range.

5
1
Mage
Silver badge
Flame

Re: owners of PV panels

I don't understand why people would buy Tesla's Home battery pack. The lead in a Lead Acid battery is about 100% recyclable, pretty simply. It's lead, oxygen and sulphuric acid. It doesn't burn, though it CAN explode if the vents are blocked and it's either overcharged or short-circuited, though it's not very spectacular. They are looking at re-usuable battery cases on cars / trucks so that the batteries can be completely recycled.

Vehicle Lead Acid batteries are mostly recycled, unlike rechargables in portable/mobile devices.

There is no weight issue with home PV use, weight is the only reason that Lithium cells are used in cars as actually NiMH can be similar volumetric capacity. only slightly less after several months of use. (They weigh a LOT more). NiMH can last longer than Lithium too.

Actually perhaps Lithium rechargables should ONLY be allowed in portable / mobile applications?

It could be argued that Propane made by synthesis from water, waste carbon and electricity solar or nuclear or hydro / wind / wave is more sensible as a car fuel than Lithium batteries. There is actually much more energy wasted within a country transporting electricity on grid and loss of recharging, compared with the energy needed to transport propane from say Sahara to Glasgow.

I first drove a regular car with regular engine with petrol, retrofitted to propane in 1979. You could use either via dashboard switch. It was regular drilled out of the ground propane, not the new-fangled synthesis. Pure electric cars might be a niche, they would need MASSIVE grid investment even if 1/5th of people used them.. Lithium for home PV panel only makes sense to Lithium battery makers selling Electric cars.

25
3

Coming to an SSL library near you? AI learns how to craft crude crypto all by itself

Mage
Silver badge

based loosely on how neurons in the brain work

So loosely that the only real similarities are that it's a network and has neuron in the name.

5
0

Facebook ads in race claim

Mage
Silver badge
Headmaster

standard advertising practices

" Racial Affinities feature is in line with standard advertising practices and is in fact intended to let advertisers post more diverse ad campaigns that can be specifically targeted at multiple groups."

Obviously loads of advertising agencies need to be prosecuted in very many countries if such specific targeting is "standard advertising practice".

6
0

DMCA updated – toaster penetration testing gets green light in America

Mage
Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: couldn't agree more

Meanwhile research outside US jurisdiction.

3
0

Windows Server 2016 persistent memory support supercharges storage IO

Mage
Silver badge

storage-class memory (SCM) as a persistent store

Hardly rocket science and on some PDAs 30 years ago. Presumably easily added to almost any OS via driver, kernel module or whatever.

It's more a case to of economics than software. I seem to remember servers with battery backed RAM too, apart from battery backed SRAM then DRAM on RAID controllers, so uncommitted cache wouldn't be lost by sudden power cut (or something)?

0
2

EU announces common corporate tax plan

Mage
Silver badge

Re: Lichtenstein?

Practically a Swiss Colony. Lichtenstein are not in EU, they are under same rules as Switzerland who manage their telecoms and much other stuff. Nearly as close to Switzerland as I.O.M. or Channel Is. is to UK (neither is exactly part of UK, but not a colony like Gibraltar or Falklands)

4
0

Getting your tongue around foreign tech-talk is easier than you think

Mage
Silver badge

Dabbsy to France

Best of luck.

I think though the ex-Pats avoiding plod are more often in Spain?

1
0

Forums