* Posts by john loader

108 posts • joined 29 Feb 2008

UK Femtocell manufacturer goes it alone

john loader

Perhaps they could get their website to work

Can't indicate netwrok using either IE or Firefox so can't register

BT shifts network, blame to fourth party

john loader

BT has lost the plot

BT and its forebears have been maintaining the copper network for over 100 years. if they haven't worked out how to do it economically by now what hope is there for the rest of the business given they can't manage computer systems either? If you're a phone company surely this is core?

And remember when Railtrack used contractors - Potters Bar and Hatfield. Potential for service to suffer to bolster the profits of third parties with no link to the end customer and buttressed from feedback by BT Indian Call Centre staff.

HP strikes back on charges for 'free' Windows 7 upgrade

john loader

as the old saying goes

There's no such thing as a free launch

Average UK broadband just over half advertised speed

john loader

Ofcom pathetic

I listened to teh interview with the head of Ofcom today - all talk no action, denies the rest of the world are better at it than the UK. And the figures used were doctored to be as if there was no line distance lag - real amounts would have been far less. I'm on 1.4Mb/s today, way up on my usual 700-900k due to distance from the exchange. Who cares which ISP I use, none of them can offer me high speeds and Ofcom will (costing us a bomb) continue to dither and procrastinate whilst the rest of teh world shows how broadband should be done

Too-tall terror snapper stopped by cops again

john loader

Photograph without fear of arrest

Oddly webcams for Chatham on the BBC site and weather-forecast.com sites don't work but go to http://www.lordswoodonline.co.uk/localwebcam.htm and there's a lovely picture of Rochester High Street just up the road (sorry) courtesy of Medway Council.

And if Kent Plod reads this you need to go to

Gun Wharf

Dock Rd, Chatham, ME4 and arrect Medway Council Chief Exec.

BT brings jobs back from India

john loader

Hooray but

I have never had a good experience of using the sub-contractors in India but if BT is going to implement that standard for UK based staff heaven help us.

They have Residential Service teams in Northern ireland, Chairman's Office high level complaints in Cardiff, Directory service in Shrewsbury and Directory Distribution Service in Dundee. Notice how far these customer service operators are from the seat of power in London?

Rumour is though that a building in Essex is undergoing refurbishment for more staff. But perhaps all companies (Listen 3) should have rules that say customer service staff must have English as their first language and that they have to use (endure?) the company's services in their private lives

Kent Police clamp down on tall photographers

john loader

What about the vertically challenged?

Surely Kent Police should issue guidelines on shorter people taking photos of PCSO's knees so as not to be guilty of discrimination on height grounds.

NHS hospitals struggle to hold back the malware tide

john loader

Malware infecting a dictaphone?

Wow these bug writers are getting clever - must check my toaster is virus free

Ofcom coughs 3G coverage maps

john loader

They miss the visiting population

We have rubbish mobile in parts of Wensleydale as we have hills and the permanent population isn't large. But the transient population numbers millions as we're a tourist centre. It hasn't occured to mobile operators that their customers get fed up when on holiday and they can't use their phones as they've not unreasonably chosen to holiday where not many people live

john loader


be interesting to overlay a map of no 3G on a map of poor or non-existent broadband. Bet many places without 3G can't use femtocells because the broadband isn't there to support them.

Police headcams burst into flames

john loader

It's selective

They only burst into flames when the wearer is hitting a demonstrator

Reg reader bombarded by 3 sales calls

john loader

Won't worry me

I'm a 3 customer with an expiring contract coming up but they won't pester me - they have such lousy coverage here that I have to be standing at the bottom of the garden to use the mobile or 12 miles away to use the 3g internet dongle. oddly nobody's mobile works in our pub.

Almost worth having them pester me to get coverage I suppose.

Broadband tax of £6 per year to fund rural fibre rollout

john loader

My mum will be pleased

My mum is 92 and has the phone as a lifel inon her pensione. Computers are a closed book. She'll be delighted to contribute to me getting more than the 750kb/s I get - so fair don't you think?

Data watchdog clears mobile phone directory

john loader

How to deal with them

As you have to accept the call I suggest torrents of abuse if a human connects the call or hang up every time if automatic. Hopefully these people will get fed up and go into a more ethical occupation

Wolfram Alpha - a new kind of Fail

john loader

Not that good on maths either

I tried convert 52mpg to litres per 100km.

Website terms unenforceable due to unlimited right to amend

john loader

Could this be the same for software?

After all opening the packet means you accept the terms and conditions.

BT health problems will cost more jobs

john loader

BT didn't learn from its own experience

In the 1980s BT developed what was then the largest IT system in Europe with its Customer Service System. In the pilot District it wrote off millions due to an inability to bill for many months and delay followed delay initially. BUT they finally achieved rollout and it appears much of the original design is still in place. The trick was change control - if it wasn't a show stopper they didn't do it. And as it was designed by the most experienced users they could find and then checked with the rest of the user community, the specification was generally of a very high quality in the first place.

MPs battle to save great British pub

john loader

Get better landlords/owners

I've moved from the South to the North. Here every village - even places without a village - seems to have a thriving pub unlike where I came from. They serve good beer (5 on pump here) good inexpensive food, aren't owned by a faceless company determined to wring the tenant dry and have landladies and landlords who create an atmosphere that attracts all ages to make the pub the heart of the village. I can drop in at any time and be assured an interesting chat with people of all (legal ages). Dogs are welcome as well. They orhganise socials and even the vicar is having a service at Eatser there. Come to the Fox and Hounds in West Witton and see how a pub should be

3 and T-Mobile announce site provider

john loader

Where Does that leave Orange

Around here if you can't access 3 you reset your handset to Orange, not that there's much difference. Where does that leave Orange in all this? Perhaps us yokels will finally get 3G

BT accused of 'sharp practice' on rolling contracts

john loader

The Ryanair approach

BT has repeatedly used the Ryanair approach to fleecing customers. It's all in the small print. Perhaps is they acted like an honest comapny without these tricky contracts, charges for paying the bill and a host of other bits and bobs people would want to use them - and their share price might get back to somewhere near flotation. Livingstone used to be Fincnace Director for Dixons/Currys/PC world - says it all

BT wins pricing control over faster broadband

john loader

So how are they are managing power?

Fibre to the home needs a power supply at the home end or a power cut means no phone.

BT going mobile - again?

john loader

Will BT help spread of 3G?

Now if BT could put a few more aerials up on telephone exchanges for their partners' networks those of us in more remote areas might finally be able to use mobiles and even 3G services. My exchange is 3 miles away - rotten broadband - my nearest 3 aerial 20 miles!

However I find the statement that 3 and T mobile share networks odd. In one place recently where no 3 signal available, Virgin (on T Mobile network) was strong. Where I live 3 is non-existent and the switch that 3 recommend is to Orange with whom 3 have a deal.

Nortel UK goes into administration to save itself

john loader

So sad

As an ex-employee (and pensioner) of Nortel I find it so sad that the company has got into this mess. When I worked for them (we were taken over) there were a predominance of US rather than Canadian senior execs who managed by Powerpoint. I taught for a year their Quality Improvement programme only to find that many (not all) of the guys at the top couldn't care about it - several joined British Gas/AA after leaving Nortel curiously . Great products, some amazingly clever staff - Harlow, the inventors of fibre optics in STC days had more PhDs than Cambridge University it was claimed - but when I worked there the awful management laid the foundations for what the current management has inherited.

MI5 head calls for comms data access

john loader

They need to know everything

When will we all be chipped so that MI5 can see exactly where we are - it would mean that the Intelligence(?) Agencies would have even more data to fight terrorism. Then there's the TV that watches you - sorry, George rwell go there first.

Exam board to hear appeal over format cockup

john loader

But what format did they want

The mystery is just what format do they want it in? Is this another case of Office 2007 problems?

Leaked Met letter questions Speaker's version of police raid

john loader

Who would you believe?

A policeman or a politician? Me neither

Ofcom: Where's the broadband beef?

john loader


Ofcom highlights the silent call menace but are adamant that banning the equipment that creates silent calls, the autodiallers, is not on - it may upset the very people making the silent calls like Barclays did.

So the silent call goes on and on.

Did anyone say that Ofcom were one of their bugbears?

Gov to Manchester: No new trams without road pricing

john loader

Democracy in action


Don't you just love soft and cuddly Government?

BT threatens to pull plug on better broadband

john loader

They don't need to dig up the roads

The comment on road digging a bit off - they pukk in fibre through the duct and pull out lots of valuable thus making some income and opening up duct space that they are now allowed to lease on

Lords demand DNA database deletions

john loader

Sanity at last

Fingerprints of the innocent have to be destroyed, genetic fingerprints i.e. DNA can be kept. Makes no sense and the law needs to be changed

Freesat gets Five

john loader

Makes up for Freeserve

Five has not been a great Freeserve supporter so I suppose this is their way out. When the switchover happens, many transmitters will not provide the Five channels at all (wonder if their advertisers know?). Here in N. Yorkshire, whilst I can get almost all Freeserve channels, Five and Fiver signals are so poor as to make watching impossible.

York council gets sniffy with Street View

john loader

There's a simple answer

They should call the police and tell them that what is being photographed could be of use to terrorists. As indeed Google street view will be.

VbyV password reset is childishly simple

john loader

Verified by Visa when the bank fouls up

Just moved. House has had the same name for over 160 years but depsite telling the bank the correct spelling they used a corrupt Postcode Address File and changed one letter in the house name. Result - payments refused as stated address did not match registered address of card. Same corrupt PAF in use by DVLA - though not by Royal Mail oddly

Tech gadgetry brings about pet-o-geddon

john loader


Our vet has a warning poster concerning dogs' tongues and shredders - Hammer horror stuff

No IT budget for faster SME payments

john loader

30 day rule

My largest customer insists on taking almost exactly 30 days for every invoice. This really annoys when the job being charged for is deemed urgent by the customer - work is urgent, paying a small company manyana. The FD thinks he's pulling a fast one. But he pays more than the customers who pay more promptly

Land Warrior soldier-puter to get hoverbot vid hookup

john loader

Wizards of Pooks corner

a sci fi story from the 60s where the army is beaten by a group of guys with shotguns because their arms were so new and complicated they couldn't work out how to use them properly. This may be truth becoming like fiction.

Ofcom: No premium numbers for previous offenders

john loader

So why only warnings on 070?

There are a load of 07 numbers that operators, especially mobile ones, charge higher rates for than normal mobile lines. Surely all should carry a warning before connecting?

BT claims UK broadband boost breakthrough

john loader

But what if the speed is just lousy

BT claim I should get 0.5Mb/s being around 6km from the exchange. Router sees betwwen 900k and 1.6M and I average around 959k. No amount of fiddling with the wiring will boost my speed. BT needs to address the issues of basic line speed .

3 threatens, T-Mobile shoots on late payments

john loader

The Unreal deal

The Real deal is full of errors. Take calls to 0762 numbers - they claim they're radio pagers which is news to mobile phone users on the Isle of Man. Admittedly 3 claim to charge a lot more than the International rate they actually charge - it's just off the Lancashire coast for Pete's sake - but it seems they just can't get their Real Deal agreement to match reality

How to stop worrying and enjoy paying for incoming calls

john loader

It's not inevitable

Anyone who has to pay for an incoming junk call/wrong number when abrod knows that paying for incoming calls is unacceptable. The sooner netwroks realise that paying each other great sums of money that tend to cancel each other out just to fatten artificially balance sheets and slip a bit of invisible profit on the better. Let's have free access and an honest estimate what, if anything, it would actually cost operators.

Reding tells Euro MPs to back telecoms reforms

john loader

And stop hiding non-EU areas within EU country plans

and the EU should make all non EU areas within Europe have their own international access codes to avois the rip offs of phoning the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands

Ofcom considers termination charges

john loader

Pay for incoming calls

And enjoy paying to receive junk calls - I think not.

Euro guidelines will allow Bluetooth spam

john loader

Oh No -not more junk

Tried to put my views but committee email rejects. I have yet to meet any marketeer that themselves like double glazing sales phone calls or junk mail but they always talk about a 2% hit rate as if to justify the 98% they upset. I talk about people like me who make it a policy never to buy anything that is advertised by invading my privacy through junk means without my permission. All they'll do is ruin Bluetooth as a useful tool.

Bring on the B ark

Watchdog hits 070 swindlers with big fine

john loader

07 is the problem that Ofcom won't address

Ofcom has failed to create reanges beginning 07 where the cost of a call is obvious up front. Take 0764 for example - numbers in that range have been allocated to non EU operators and hence many netwroks charge international call rates. When challenged to provide a list of codes they had alocated to non EU operators Ofcom said they couldn't but my mobile operator, 3, said it was up to me to know that the mobile I called was in fact an Isle of man one, non UK, non EU.

There needs a real go at the 07 range splitting UK mobile, non UK mobile, personal numbering, VoIP into specific identifiable ranges.

Ofcom: 'Well done Ofcom!'

john loader

Focom's not really there for us

Two recent brushes with Ofcom have convinced me they are there for the supplier until they really really get pushed. Firstly on silent calls they refuse to ban autodiallers as it may upset the people using them to make silent calls. they're happy to fine the companies if enough people complain but stamping out the problem of companies calling vulnerable people on their own and then hanging up in the first place seems beyond them.

Secondly they allocate UK phone number to non UK/non EEC countries and then telcos charge unsuspecting callers international rates. When I asked Ofcom for a list of mobile codes they have allocated to the Isle of Man - 07642 but there are other codes I believe - (3 charged me for an international call in total disregard of their published price list and Berkshire Trading Standards are not asking them why), not part of the UK or the EU oddly - they said they hadn't got one and it was up to the customer to call their phone company before making a call to check the charges. Great advice Ofcom.

With an organisation so top heavy making them do anything requires a lot of force to overcome the inertia and complaining to Ofcom seems a waste of time.

Net shoppers bullied into being Verified by Visa

john loader

What's the problem?

Having been ripped off 3 times by on-line fraud I applaud the verified by Visa process - in fact I pestered my bank to introduce it. Anything that makes it safer to buy online must be a bonus. And site owners want it to protect themselves as they have had to carry the cost of fraud and hence had to reflect that cost in their prices.

I haven't seen any adverse security issues with the scheme anywhere. Why the resistance?

BT shares plummet on margin pressure

john loader

Who says prices are too high?

BT shares were launched at £1.20 over 20 years ago and now they are only about 80% dearer. That's either value for money or rotten management

Rebellious BT computers refuse to take orders

john loader

There goes my bank as well

BT have just taken over Nationwide's computing - Oh well, I'm sure I can find another bank.

Mobe operators warn of ruin if regulators set roaming charges

john loader

Unreal profits

If only mobile operators would look not at what they charge others but at the balance at what they charge foreign roamers against what they recoup from they're own roamers. If charges for roaming only reflected the difference between these sums then they'd be lower. As it is, whilst some holiday destination countries do benefit overall most operators have a reasonably close balance between in and out roaming costs/charges across Europe and all these charges do is pad the balance sheet - they're not real profits just inflated turnover.

Europe acts on mobile charges

john loader

Why should charges go up?

If every phone company is paying every other phone company termination charges then surely they cancel each other out. The biggest operators get the biggest income but also have to pay out the most and vice versa. So the turnover will drop but the net effect on profits will be zero. Or am I missing some vital piece of high level economics

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