* Posts by Dave K

210 posts • joined 25 Apr 2008

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Intel is upset that Qualcomm is treating it like Intel treated AMD for years and years

Dave K

Re: Uh, *raises hand*

So, DEC developed x86-64? No.

Nobody is saying "AMD was the first to develop a 64bit architecture", what they are saying is that it was AMD that developed the 64bit extensions to the x86 architecture.

In fact, there was plenty of suggestion at the time that Intel wanted to use a different (and incompatible) set of their own x86-64 instructions, but were shot down by MS who were already developing Windows XP for AMD64 - (as well as Itanium at the time, plus x86), and told Intel they would not develop for yet another instruction set. That's what El Reg suggested here at the time: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/01/29/intel_likely_to_offer_64bit/

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User filed fake trouble tickets to take helpful sysadmin to lunches

Dave K

Went further than lunch!

I have had more than a free lunch. Whilst working at a University, I was tasked with helping with an intermittent issue with the serial port on a workstation used for experimental research. Spent ages trying to figure out why the serial port kept misbehaving, before finally deciding to replace the motherboard (it was an older workstation with built-in serial port, and I had a couple of spares in my storage room). The female post-doc researcher for once seemed interested in the work I was doing, and we chatted for a while as I swapped components around in the system.

After doing this, the system worked fine. The next day, the nice post-doc researcher brought me a thank-you card and a box of chocolates for my time - which was great! I was then invited a few weeks later to play badminton after work with her. One thing led to another, and well - she's my wife now!

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UK government's war on e-cigs is over

Dave K

Re: Ex-smoker, vaper here

This as well. I used to smoke casually but quit a couple of years ago and now vape. I don't have some ridiculous sub-ohm mod that kicks out massive clouds of vapour, just a fairly standard small tank that produces a very small vapour cloud that dissipates within a few seconds. I also cannot stand the sickly smell of some liquids and vape a decent quality and mild tobacco liquid that produces next to no smell at all.

I've never set off a single fire alarm, had any objections from anyone, and none of the visitors to our house can smell a thing - even when I may have vaped just a minute or so earlier - and I don't vape in-front of visitors anyway.

Ultimately, it's about doing it in a courteous manner, and not blowing ginormous clouds of stink in busy areas. Typically, there's always a minority of idiots that give vaping a bad imagine, and it's a pity.

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European MPs push for right to repair rules

Dave K

>> There are good reasons why batteries often cannot be replaced easily.

Fair enough, but there's no excuse for sealing the device shut with glue and plastic spot welds (hello Microsoft), and holding the batteries in place with huge quantities of glue either. Plenty of manufacturers have proved that it's easy to make a super-slim device that's held together with screws, and similarly it's possible to hold batteries in place inside with screws as well.

I don't care if the battery is a weird shape, or several different cells, so long as it's feasible to replace it either yourself, or at a simple third-party shop without having to destroy the product in the process.

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Concorde without the cacophony: NASA thinks it's cracked quiet supersonic flight

Dave K

Re: A luddite writes...

>> Gotta say the argument about how regular flying is so terribly exhausting and tiresome for poor, downtrodden execs that they really can't live without supersonic flight / a new, more convenient airport / an extra runway etc etc *really* grates.

I fly regularly on business, and I'm not an exec. Nor even a senior manager. I'm a lead tech. I fly a lot on business because I'm good at my job, and my company uses my expertise as a technical lead for major projects, and also to provide support/training in various areas. As such, I am restricted to bog-standard economy flights and budget hotels.

However, in the early days of flying, there was no such thing as an economy flight. It's only because technology improved and more and more people flew that planes became cheaper and more efficient, and prices dropped as a whole. Early cars were also expensive, so were early computers. Should we therefore ignore future technological improvements just because initially they're priced out-of-reach of normal folk? Or should we pursue them and accept that with continued development, the price will drop in due course?

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Dave K

Re: A luddite writes...

Whilst you are correct that you can meet with people via Skype etc (no need to jet across the Atlantic), there's a number of things you've missed.

1) Visiting a country to actually sight-see (rather than just lay on the beach).

2) Visiting friends/relatives

3) Business trips that actually require physical input. I regularly fly on business, and not just "for a meeting", we use telepresence/conferencing for those.

If you regularly take 7-11 hour flights, you quickly realise how much of a tedious drag they are. Furthermore, all technology starts at prices which are "for the privileged few". It's increasing adoption, more mass production and improvements in technology that allow these things to filter down to ordinary folk. And if in the future I could fly supersonic at a respectable price, I would do so.

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'OK, everyone. Stop typing, this software is DONE,' said no one ever

Dave K

How to maintain revenue

The big difference is that software doesn't wear out from usage, but real-world items typically do.

Take that hammer, if you hit enough nails with it, eventually the head will likely come loose and the shaft may crack, meaning you have to repair or replace it. Use your office chair enough, and eventually the cover and padding will begin to disintegrate and you'll need to replace it.

A lot of physical items therefore have a guaranteed revenue stream as you'll need to buy new ones when the old ones fail (more and more items are *designed* to fail after a while of course, but this is another story).

Software doesn't do this though. You don't wear out a loop by iterating through it too many times, hence the software writers have to come up with new methods to maintain revenue. Typically you either keep upgrading the software and depreciating old versions to force people to upgrade, or you charge for expensive support contracts (and make sure your software breaks in complicated ways from time to time to justify the support), or of course the latest method is the dreaded "subscription" approach, or annual license.

Maybe with subscription approaches, some software could increasingly be considered as "finished", in that you get revenue regardless of whether you create new versions. The only issue is whether a competitor releases something better and pinches your customers.

From here, we're back to physical products, where improvements are simply meant to ensure people continue buying your company's stuff when their old items break. Like that nice tungsten-tipped hammer with the comfort-grip handle...

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Microsoft's new Surface laptop defeats teardown – with glue

Dave K
Thumb Down

Recycling also difficult

Of course, some will point out that they're happy to just use a laptop for a few years, then replace it. Hence, they don't need replaceable parts. However, another downside of sealing the laptop together with glue and plastic spot-welds is that it also becomes a nightmare to recycle as well once you decide to replace it.

I'm not saying that ultra-portables should necessarily be as upgradable and flexible as a full laptop, but I've seen plenty of ultra-portables (Samsung Series 9, X1 Carbon, Dell XPS) that can be easily un-screwed and repaired/upgraded to at least some degree. Not good MS, not good.

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Samsung releases 49-inch desktop monitor with 32:9 aspect ratio

Dave K

Re: Optional

I use three screens, occasionally 4 if I have my laptop screen open as well. Snapping 3-4 apps into place is a doddle with this (drag to the screen I want, then to the top to maximise to that screen). However with a single monitor, I'd either be restricted to two apps snapped at a time, or I'd have the faf and palaver of manually resizing multiple windows to fit - not ideal when you've got Outlook, a web browser, 7 copies of Excel, two copies of Word, an RDP session and two remote apps running via Citrix all open at once :)

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Dave K

Re: Only 1080 high?

As I'm lucky enough to work in IT at my company, I was pleased to find one of the last 1920x1200 screens left in our stock which I promptly snaffled for myself. As you say, all new ones now are 1920x1080, and they just feel cramped and unpleasant for working on.

For my home office, my company sent over a 24" 1920x1080 screen. I don't use it, I prefer to use my own 16:10 screen via KVM.

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Dave K

Huh?

>> "most monitors these days are 16:9 to deliver HD images at 1080 x 720"

You mean 1920x1080.

Even then, I'll be giving this a miss as it still has less vertical resolution than my main (and aging) 1920x1200 monitor. As for work, I'd rather have multiple monitors as it's far easier to snap multiple apps in place that way (I actually use a 1920x1200 main screen with a 1600x1200 monitor either side of it).

And just imagine the fun of browsing web pages down a miniscule column in the middle...

I'm sure some people will like this, but it's not for me.

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Microsoft totters from time machine clutching Windows 10 Workstation

Dave K

Re: Desperation

If I'm a dinosaur for wanting an OS with a clean, coherent, consistent and friendly UI then so be it.

Windows 10 has decent technical underpinnings, but the UI is an unfocussed mess (some bits Metro, some bits classic, two different control/settings panels, designed to be mobile friendly - despite the collapse of Windows on phones, etc). Bin all of that and give me a clean and consistent desktop UI that's designed for a desktop PC please.

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Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

Dave K

Re: On air compression

>>"And it's particularly jarring when I'm listening to my music collection - the old stuff (Genesis, Yes, Camel, some of the classical stuff) is all mastered at lower apparent volume than the newer stuff. So, on shuffle, I'm either deafened or I can't hear the music properly."

You need a tool such as MP3Gain (there's also some out there for AAC and other such formats). They analyse the loudness of each song and apply ReplayGain to it so that the volume level is consistent (basically by cranking down the volume of newer stuff). Result is that the Beatles sound just as loud as current music. I have it applied to my library and all my songs now sound consistent.

I particularly like MP3Gain against some other tools that apply ReplayGain as it edits the MP3s themselves (losslessly and reversably, it just tweaks the internal MP3 gain headers for each frame) so that it works even on devices/players that don't support ReplayGain ID3 tags.

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Dave K

Re: On air compression

Fully agree. To show the level of the issue, here's two zoomed-in snips taken from CD rips (both show about 10 seconds of the song).

This is Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit from 1991 (chosen as it's a heavyish, grunge song):

https://imgur.com/a/NI020

Decent dynamics, loud and quiet clearly visible, as are the peaks from the drums. Result, song sounds good - especially through decent speakers.

And in comparison, here's Muse - Map of the Problematique from 2005 (again, a fairly guitar-heavy song):

https://imgur.com/a/XIlKe

You don't have to be an audiophile to see that it's just a solid wall of distorted noise with zero dynamic range and everything brickwalled up to peak level. Result, it sounds like crap, no matter what equipment you play it on.

For most music, radio has nothing to do with it, even the original CDs are produced in a simply dreadful way with no regard whatsoever for the quality of the sound.

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Dave K

The music industry has to take a lot of the blame. Since the mid 90s, sound quality has basically been disregarded with the only focus being on volume. Heading into the 2000s, it didn't matter whether you used CDs on a high-end Hifi, or a tin can at the end of a piece of string. The production quality of modern music is simply awful.

The result is that when the sound quality of modern music is dreadful no matter what the medium, it's easy to see why so many people are satisfied with low-quality streams, tinny iPhone speakers and the likes.

I think MP3 often gets a bum rap. Well encoded MP3s can sound virtually indistinguishable from the original CDs in blind tests, even for earlier and well-mastered music. The fault isn't the audio format being used, it's the quality of the original source material - and only the music industry can fix that by abandoning the pursuit of volume above all else and returning to sound quality as the top production priority. However even with volume normalisation becoming increasingly prevalent, most music is still mastered for volume over quality...

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Take a sneak peek at Google's Android replacement, Fuchsia

Dave K
WTF?

Itanium??

"Fuchsia runs on x86/IA-64 hardware"

IA-64 is Itanium, sure you don't mean ARM64?

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Hasta la Windows Vista, baby! It's now officially dead – good riddance

Dave K

Mixed opinions

There were a few issues with Vista. Not least of which is that it was too bloated for the PCs of the time. When Vista came along, PCs typically only had 2GB of RAM, sometimes only 1GB, plus they often only had single core CPUs. And Vista crawled along on such systems, compared with XP that ran pretty quick on the same hardware. Hence Vista gained a reputation for being slow.

Windows 7 is a similar size, but by the time it was released, 4GB was the norm, as were dual/quad core CPUs. Hence on the PCs of the time, Windows 7 ran pretty well and automatically gained a reputation of being quicker. Run Windows 7 on a single core system with 1-2GB of RAM and it'll also run sluggishly.

UAC was a good idea, but was quite annoying and popped up a bit too often. Windows 7 fixed this simply by toning down the prompts to areas where they were necessary. Of course, XP-style apps that expected admin rights and full write access to the whole hard drive definitely helped exacerbate the problem.

Lastly IMO, the main other issue of Vista was that it felt messy. 7 different shutdown options (with Sleep as the default - even on laptops). A default wallpaper that was a smorgasbord of too many colours, the side-bar that didn't do that much but which added more clutter. Windows 7 in comparison did a good job of streamlining and tidying the UI up.

Overall, I didn't personally like Vista. It was a bit too bloated for hardware of the time, the UI was messy, and it didn't offer much to the end user over XP, whereas Windows 7 introduced the new task bar, the ability to snap windows side-by-side, plus other genuinely useful tweaks.

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Why do GUIs jump around like a demented terrier while starting up? Am I on my own?

Dave K

My big beef is also with web pages that have a "scroll to the top" trigger once the last element is loaded. So, you open the page, most of it displays - including the text. You start to read and scroll down, but then that small irrelevant icon finishes loading 5 seconds later and suddenly you're jolted back to the top of the page.

ServiceNow is notorious for this. Some of our pages have more than one of these, and every page load is a constant struggle between what I want to view and what the dumb-ass developer feels I should be viewing as the various elements finish loading. Pain in the absolute bum it is!

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Microsoft kills Windows Vista on April 11: No security patches, no hot fixes, no support, nada

Dave K

Re: ME Hated?

It had software compatibility issues due to MS hiding DOS mode which a lot of utilities still required, System Restore was poorly implemented and would often back-up viruses and then restore them to your system if you used it. It was incredibly flaky and a lot less stable than Windows 98 (and that's saying something).

In short, It didn't really bring that much to the table, but cost a lot in terms of compatibility and stability. And that is why it was widely disliked.

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Intel's dying Atom chips strike again: Netgear recalls four ReadyNAS, Wi-Fi management lines

Dave K

Re: Gimme an "A"....

Ahh yes, whereas Intel with the processor serial number scandal, dodgy dealings with Rambus, P3 1.13GHz recall, the whole of the terrible P4 line-up etc. was just doing superbly all along right?

Oh, and the Athlon XP for a sizeable chunk of its lifespan was the fastest x86 CPU available...

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Lap(top) of luxury: Porsche Design revs up 2-in-1 Windows 10 slab

Dave K

I'd still take the Surface Book

If I *had* to have a Windows 10 laptop/tablet hybrid, I'm afraid I'd still take the Surface Book for one reason - a 3:2 screen. I just couldn't justify £2,000 for a cheapo, cramped 16:9 screen.

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BOFH: Elf of Safety? Orc of Admin. Pleased to meet you

Dave K

Nice twist!

Excellent episode! Must admit, I wasn't expecting there to be a sweepstake running, I wonder who chose over-voltaged cattle-prod...

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Two words, Mozilla: SPEED! NOW! Quit fiddling and get serious

Dave K

Re: Oh woe is me

> I cannot for the life of me figure out how space is being wasted.

I often have a lot of tabs open, with the size of tabs reduced via an addon. With Australis, I could fit far less tabs on my screen before the names and icons started being truncated.

> Well, hard to comment since we dont know what those "Things" are

Speaking personally - and these are removed, not just hidden...

Tabs On Bottom is removed (I use it as it gives more space for tabs).

Status Bar is removed (and I find it useful, and put some addons down there to keep my main control bar tidy)

You cannot move the Back/forwards buttons any more.

You cannot move the Stop/Reload buttons or separate them (this is a big beef for me as they're now anchored at the opposite end of the address bar. I like my navigation controls to be together, not spread out at opposite ends of my screen).

In short, Australis removed a huge amount of customisability. I don't necessarily have a problem with changing defaults, so long as I can tweak things so that the browser suits my way of working. Firefox's customisability was a key feature, and Australis undermined some of the core founding principles of Firefox.

>> Entirely subjective and not worth wasting effort commenting on

I'll re-phrase then. It looks just like Chrome. And if I wanted a browser that looked like Chrome, I'd just use Chrome. The fact that one of the most popular addons is a tool that reverts the UI should tell you how well received Australis has been. That and the additional decline of Firefox's market share once Mozilla pushed it out the door...

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Dave K
Thumb Up

Spot. On.

If I could give you a dozen up-votes for that post, I would. You've hit the nail right on the head when it comes to Mozilla's problems!

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Dave K

Re: Still using Firefox

Agreed. Australis was an abomination and it resulted in me ditching Firefox for Pale Moon - a pity since I'd been using Firefox since it was Firebird 0.6. It wasn't just the rounded tabs that I hated, it was all the other customisability they removed when they introduced it.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, Mozilla needs to focus on their USPs. Firefox was always slower than Chrome, but it had a powerful and very customisable UI, plus a much deeper and richer add-on ecosystem. Mozilla need to find ways to keep these powerful features whilst improving other areas of the browser. Instead, Mozilla's recent approach has just been to mimic Chrome. The UI looks like Chrome, the customisability is steadily disappearing, and Mozilla will soon be migrating to Chrome-style addons too (which are a lot less powerful).

I don't understand why to be honest. If I wanted to use a browser that looked and worked like Chrome, I'd use Chrome. Mozilla need to keep Firefox different, retain its strengths and improve its weaknesses.

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AMD's daring new money-making strategy: Sue everyone! Mwahaha

Dave K

Re: That's the point

"Didn't nVidia rip off Silicon Graphics' patents?"

They sure did, and it was one of the worst mistakes in SGI's history and led them to nicely towards bankruptcy a few years later. After all, what point is a "strategic alliance" when you're hardly making any graphics products any more anyway? SGI were moving towards supercomputers at the time, and all they did was give Nvidia free access to all their patents and technologies without a penny in return.

Patents do need to be defended, and whilst it's fine signing cross-license deals with similar companies (as AMD will likely have with NVidia and Intel), if you don't enforce when other companies infringe them, you're just giving away your technology for free. Whether you agree if these patents should exist or not is another matter of course, but then a lot of patents look blindingly simple on paper...

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God save the Queen... from Donald Trump. So say 1 million Britons

Dave K

>> "Where is THEIR petition? Does it even exist?"

It would appear it does exist: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/178844

Currently standing at 69k signatures, compared with 1.6 million for the "No-State-Visit" poll. Also, looking at the last hour of these petitions shows the Anti-Trump one still growing at twice the rate of signatures, despite being open for several days now.

So there you are. For the 69M people here, there's a way to vote for both sides of the argument, and as it currently stands, the public seem pretty damn sure that they do not want that incompetent buffoon to be given the "honour" of a state visit. And quite right too.

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Dave K

Re: How many of those signing the Petition have actually read the Executive Order

"Has our society so completely lost its mind that people are actually wanting to ban someone from visiting this country whose government has expressed such sentiments,"

The sentiments are not the problem here, it's the incompetent, botched, racist and heavy-handed implementation of this which is the problem. You have people with USA residency and legitimate papers suddenly being detained with no warning. You have University professors with British citizenship suddenly being kicked off planes and banned from the country. You have families who have lived together in the USA for years suddenly torn apart when a traveling member is banned from returning to his home and his family. You also have officials at airports who don't seem to know what they should be doing here, plus numerous judges confirming that this ruling is unconstitutional.

I don't necessarily have a problem with improving the vetting process to ensure that people who enter the USA have good intentions, but such measures need to be carefully implemented and properly thought through.

This though is ill-conceived, hugely damaging to America's worldwide reputation and has left hundreds if not thousands of innocent people marooned, detained etc. It's also completely excessive. This goes beyond using a sledgehammer to crack a nut, this is more like using a steam roller to crack open a poppy seed.

And we're supposed to invite this racist, incompetent buffoon to Britain on an official state visit in the midst of all the chaos and suffering he's currently causing? What kind of message would that send?

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Dave K

Re: People

If Brexit is anything to go by, if you don't vote/sign then you're not relevant. After all, count all the ones that didn't vote in the referendum (either because they couldn't be bothered, or were ineligible to vote) and only 27% of the actual population of Britain voted to leave the EU - yet that's what we're doing.

Same goes here. You want to show Trump he's welcome? Set up your own Pro-Trump-State-Visit petition and see how many votes you get. Until you do that, counting the people that didn't sign it is meaningless.

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Microsoft goes retro with Vista, Zune-style Windows Neon makeover

Dave K

Re: Still not as good as it used to be...

Well the beauty of Windows 7 is that if you don't like Aero Glass, you're just a few clicks away from a flatter, classic theme. Unlike with Windows 10 where if you don't like what MS have done with the styling, you're SOL.

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Those online ads driving you bonkers are virtually 'worthless for brands'

Dave K

Re: Puzzled

I agree. I do allow ads on a few sites I frequent, but only so long as those ads remain sensible and none-invasive.

Recently, another red-bannered IT news site (that shall remain nameless) started blocking users with ad-blockers. So, as I do read that site regularly, I switched off my Ad Blocker on it, and good god what a mess. Auto-playing videos right in the middle of the article, constant connections to all manner of ad sites going on, and the pages took an eternity to load and absolutely crawled along (with my CPU usage rocketing as a result).

So, the ad-blocker went back on, along with YesScript to block the ad-block check script, and suddenly the pages load really quickly and reading them is a breeze. Hence, I'm not surprised that people either block or ignore the nastier and more invasive ads out there. Not surprised one bit.

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Sysadmin 'fixed' PC by hiding it on a bookshelf for a few weeks

Dave K

Suppliers

My main experience with this issue isn't doing such things for the users, but rather doing it for major suppliers such as Dell/HP. You have a machine with a hardware fault. You know full well it has a fault - even if the magical diagnostics are not reporting the issue, but tech support insists it's a Windows issue and won't budge. I had one machine a few years back displaying graphical corruption in the BIOS screen, and still the guy on the phone insisted that a reinstall of Windows would fix it.

Rather than wasting half an hour arguing, these days I often find it's easiest to say "OK, I'll try that", hang up, go and do something else productive for an hour, then phone them back: "Yep, re-installed Windows, problem is still there". At which point they often cave in and arrange for a replacement motherboard. And surprise, surprise, the issue goes away after that.

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Samsung, the Angel of Death: Exploding Note 7 phones will be bricked

Dave K
Facepalm

Re: Personal safety and a dangerous precident

Whether you want to be an idiot and hold onto a piece of dangerous technology is up to you. However, this fault has the potential to seriously harm other people. How would you feel if a loved one was killed because some idiot took one of these onto a train and it exploded and caused a fatal fire? Or the apartment building you lived in caught fire due to one of these - resulting in the destruction of your home?

It's not just about you. Samsung has a duty to protect the other bystanders out there that might be caught up in this mess. Even after the device is bricked, you can still keep it if you want. However you can't use it as it poses a serious risk both you you, and others around you.

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Why I just bought a MacBook Air instead of the new Pro

Dave K

Re: I can understand

I'm an even bigger fan of the X201. Still has the Core i5/i7, can be upgraded with an SSD and plenty of RAM, but also has the 16:10 screen and a trackpad with proper buttons. In fact, a maxed out X201 is still my primary laptop when I'm on the move.

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Dave K
WTF?

Re: Solder not Socket...

Excellent re-sale value?

How exactly?

In a few years time, the memory and storage will be considered low to average spec at best, and the battery will have lost a sizeable chunk of its useful life as well. Now with a 3 year-old standard laptop, you can up the RAM a bit, pop a new shiny SSD in and replace the battery. Result is a nicely refreshed machine with decent performance, full battery life and some genuine re-sale value as a result.

But who wants an older Macbook knowing that the battery will soon pack in, and that you're then stuck with a mobile device that only works near a power socket?

Apple doesn't want resale value. They want your shiny new kit to wear out and be thrown in the bin as quickly as possible so you have to buy their next shiny product.

Incidentally, I agree with the author. I own two Mac Minis that are a good few years old and have seen several upgrades during their life. I will not be buying another one with all its now-soldered components.

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Windows updates? Just trust us, says Microsoft executive

Dave K

Trust needs to be earned.

Binning your QA department and relying on volunteers is not a good way to build confidence and trust.

Bundling adware and malware (GWX, IE advertising) with your updates is also not a good way to build confidence and trust.

Releasing a number of major Windows 10 updates that have broken things in various ways is also not a good way to build confidence and trust.

Trust has to be earned. Right now, MS seem to be doing everything in their power to lower the quality of updates and to harm that trust, then they're telling us to let them update everything for us, and are implementing blocks so that updates on some classification of machines are forced.

And they're wondering why Windows 10 has received an iffy reception amongst IT Pros?

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Apple to automatically cram macOS Sierra into Macs – 'cos that worked well for Windows 10

Dave K

Re: This is a much smaller update than going from Windows 7 to Windows 10

The big thing you're missing here is "choice".

If you avoided Windows 7 because of Aero then you're a bit of a numpty, as there were numerous flat and transparent-less none-Aero themes available. Heck, you could make it look almost like Windows 2000 if you wanted to by dropping it to a classic theme and tweaking the task bar settings.

With Windows 10, MS have increasingly gone down the "our way or the highway" route. If you don't like flat, lifeless, solid-colour boxes, you're SOL, because that's all you get. By all means make the default theme a rather bland and dreary one, but give us some choice. At least they've added back the window shadows that they stupidly removed in Windows 8.

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BOFH: The case of the suspicious red icon

Dave K
Pint

Urgent job queue...

Awesome stuff, I need one of those as well...

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Apple sued over shoddy iPhone touchscreens

Dave K
WTF?

I've kept an iPhone 3G, Samsung Galaxy S3 and now an LG G4 in my trouser pocket regularly over the last 8 years and have never experienced a single issue with doing so. That's without counting the various Nokias and Sony Erricsons I've done the same with in pre-smartphone days.

I'm not going to start strapping pouches or man-bags onto myself just to compensate for one manufacturer's flimsy construction issues.

0
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Mozilla's trying on seven hot new spring/summer logo looks

Dave K
FAIL

Re: Mozilla doesn't need a new logo

From my perspective, it's because Mozilla have lost their way. They've stopped listening to the users and keep making nonsensical development decisions without any real thought or consideration.

Australis was and still is a disaster. It was slated from the word go, the "Classic Theme Restorer" addon is one of the most popular on the Mozilla addon site, and the declining market share of Firefox accelerated after it was introduced. Mozilla's response wasn't to acknowledge concerns, or look at tweaking the most heavily criticised aspects, but just to ignore the complains and pretend they didn't exist. Mozilla were right, and anyone who complained was wrong.

The introduction of Pocket and Hello added pointless bloat to what was originally designed to be a simple, lean and fast browser, and hardly anyone used them as a result. Hello is now in the process of being removed, and Pocket has already been spun out into an addon (albeit one that is bundled still)

Numerous other customisations (once Firefox's USP) being steadily stripped out and binned. XUL and XPCOM are due to go (with addons becoming lightweight Chrome-like addons instead), heavyweight themes were binned, numerous other customisation options were removed. This didn't do much to improve Firefox's reputation for new users, but it did alienate plenty of Firefox's existing users and 3rd party developers.

Hence overall, Mozilla have added nothing to Firefox to make it stand out, and have instead spent all their time removing features, alienating their users, and trying to play catch-up to Chrome both in terms of looks and functionality such as multi-threading.

Hence, will it still be here in 5 years time? Not the way Mozilla are going about things it won't! It'll take a lot more than a wacky change of icon to reverse Mozilla's fortunes.

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OMG: HPE gobbles SGI for HPC. WTF?

Dave K

How the mighty have fallen

It is a sad day to see how much SGI have fallen - even if the current SGI is just Rackable with a new name. The real SGI died back in 2009. I still have 3 old SGI workstations at home for occasional pratting around on (an O2, Indigo2 and a Fuel), and for the mid 90s, their kit was legendary for what it could do, and how it looked. It was sad to see just how quickly they imploded once PCs began to eat into their core market.

Of course, the number of management mis-steppings were also huge. The early announcement to shift to Itanium (combined with cancelling future MIPS development) way before Itanium was even remotely ready to ship (and when nobody had any idea how it'd perform), and of course the even more disastrous decision to settle with NVidia and give NVidia free access to all SGI's graphics patents. All decisions which just accelerated their decline.

6
0

Free Windows 10 upgrade: Time is running out – should you do it?

Dave K

Re: am i the only one resisting this

No, you're not the only one, although I have other reasons for resisting.

The data slurping (along with Microsoft's secrecy about it) is very much a concern.

The "forced updates" are also a big concern for me (and something that really puts me off).

But the biggest thing that puts me off Windows 10 has been Microsoft's awful attempts to ram it down everyone's throats using trickery, deceptive practices, and outright malware tactics.

It's a bit like meeting an excessively pushy salesman. Eventually you outright reject the product he's pushing our of sheer principle...

89
2

Sysadmin 'fesses up to wrecking his former employer's IT systems

Dave K

Re: I thought?

Yeah, pretty much. The only time that's not happened to me was when I handed in my own notice (due to a better job offer elsewhere). But for anyone I've worked with who's been let go, their access is immediately curtailed and they are removed from the premises. It's for their own good as much as that of the company's.

Happened to one of my managers a few years back shortly after a takeover (I was tasked with revoking his access whilst he went to the interview of no return). He took it fine afterwards and simply told me "It's a business decision, you can't take these things personally. You just have to accept them and move on".

One month later he had a much better job at another company anyway.

3
0

'Windows 10 nagware: You can't click X. Make a date OR ELSE'

Dave K

Re: Vista?

That screenshot is Windows 7, not Vista. I think it's a mistake in the article.

2
0

Server makers love Intel Xeons (true) - but not the price tag

Dave K

It's a pity. I remember fondly 10 years ago when Opteron was a very credible and in many ways superior alternative to Intel's old NetBurst Xeons.

8
0

Samsung: Don't install Windows 10. REALLY

Dave K

compatible?

The Windows 10 nagware typically states "your computer is compatible" in amongst the various green ticks and marketing waffle. Hence, MS need yet another kick up the backside for wrongly stating something is compatible and then borking it via an "update" which shouldn't have been applied in the first place.

Of course, Samsung also deserves some scorn for atrocious driver support as well...

19
1

Intel loses its ARM wrestling match, kicks out Atom mobe chips

Dave K

"Intel should have started a complete redesign with sharp pencil and clean sheet of paper years ago"

You mean like Itanium was meant to be? Intel's track record with introducing new architectures is abysmal. i860 was also a flop. Intel just doesn't seem to be that good at anything other than pushing x86 on the desktop.

10
0

BOFH: Thermo-electric funeral

Dave K
Thumb Up

Outstanding! It's been a good few episodes since I laughed out loud at a BOFH.

6
0

BOFH: Sure, I could make your cheapo printer perform miracles

Dave K
Pint

Dummy mode!

Ahh, a very welcome return of Dummy Mode after all this time. Cheers!

16
0

Mud sticks: Microsoft, Windows 10 and reputational damage

Dave K

Re: Contempt for your customers is the wong way to go

No, that's Windows Server 2008 R2 which is Windows 7 based. Plain 2008 is based on Vista and shares many of its UI issues as a result.

5
1

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