* Posts by Jack Ketch

32 posts • joined 25 Apr 2008

Word wonks insist GIFs are really JIFs

Jack Ketch

Re: @Jack Ketch Pronunciation comes from the words it acronymizes

What a lovely straw man you've constructed there.

Source please.

Jack Ketch

Re: Pronunciation comes from the words it acronymizes

I keep seeing this 'rule' being parroted, but can anyone actually find a source for it? I know of many acronyms in regular use which do not follow it, and there is no such controversy over their pronunciations.

Acronyms are words in their own right.

Jack Ketch

Re: Was the vulture logo created by a jiffics artist on jiff paper?

I wonder how those who insist the correct pronunciation is with a hard 'g' pronounce PIN and pebkac.

I'm willing to bet it isn't 'pine' and 'pebkat'.

Ten... PC games you may have missed

Jack Ketch

The combat feels much like the original games, although there are some notable differences. Automatic weapons play a much larger role, and classic weapons like the Spinfusor are somewhat sidelined. The mechanics of jetpacks and skiing have also been reversed, so skiing is used to generate speed whereas jetpacks are only used to conserve speed between bouts of skiing - so jetpacks are really underpowered and can't really be used for manoeuvring.

Much of the strategic element is lacking too, with features like the Command Circuit missing altogether (so no objectives or linking to VGS). No laser targetting. Deployables have been pared back and dumbed down . There are fewer vehicles with no sign of the Thundersword and Jericho, and the Havoc still hadn't been deployed when I last played (a few weeks ago). Maps are often on the small side (all are 16v16) but there are some good reproductions of classic maps, and the new maps are generally good considering the reduced scale of the game.

I'd say it feels like UT skinned up to play like Tribes (which is essentially what it is). It's missing the higher skill cap and many of the strategic elements that really made the original Tribes games stand out, but it's still fun to play for a bit.

Hitchhiker shot while researching 'Kindness of America'

Jack Ketch

Re: Gun ownership.

Wow...thanks for the heads-up. Much.

Jack Ketch

Re: Gun ownership.


Wow...you just compared a tiny state with a population of 600k and density of 70 per mile, to a city of almost ten million. Intellectually dishonest much?

Jack Ketch

Re: Gun ownership.

Legalising gun ownership won't undo what was done to them. It won't reduce the number of future victims either; quite the opposite. What's your point?

Vauxhall Ampera hybrid e-car

Jack Ketch
Thumb Up

Re: Electricity is free now?

It costs between 25p and £1 a day to charge a fully electric car (so expect this to be at the cheaper end) http://www1.aston.ac.uk/about/news/releases/2010/october/electric-vehicles/

The average commute in the UK is under 10 miles, so for many people, that's a lot of short trips right there.

The truth about Apple's mind-boggling low tax rate

Jack Ketch

Re: Double standards

As a proportion of my income, much more. What's your point?

Activist supplied illegally obtained docs to DeSmogBlog

Jack Ketch

Re: Re: Warmist?

Rehashing the same discredited talking points doesn't constitute a debate.

Chinese coal blamed for global warming er... cooling

Jack Ketch
Thumb Up


So assuming that we don't have a very good understanding of how the climate works. Are you saying that it's probably not a good idea to continue to emit billions of tons of additional greenhouse gases into the atmosphere every year?

That sounds sensible enough to me.

BBC iPlayer iPad app out this week

Jack Ketch
Big Brother

They persuaded the dev to remove the BBC streams

Because the app would stream lower bit rate media over 3G (for obvious reasons). Auntie Beeb decided that rather than be blighted with lower quality media playback when we're out and about, we would be better off with nothing at all.

If you can get your hands on an older version of the third-party app, it still works.

Angry Birds struggle to take on Androids

Jack Ketch

Don't update it then

Have you updated it recently?

I did, just before reading this article (didn't read the update notes *sigh*) and all BBC streams/content had been removed. Had to uninstall and sideload an old version to get the streams back (there's an 11 day old upload on 4shared - use at your own risk.)

Samsung plans to smash Android rivals..what about the iPad?

Jack Ketch

Then fix it.

I suppose it depends on what you expect from the phone. Two of my non-geek friends have bought these after seeing mine (I actually recommended alternative phones), and have reported being very pleased with everything except for the battery (which is no worse than other large screen phones.)

I, however, know that when considering the hardware the phone underperforms. I also know that the version of Android that it ships with is outdated. But those aren't really issues to me since I know how to fix them (except for the GPS, but it's not as bad for me as others have reported.)

The phones may be waiting for Froyo, but the users aren't. Those who know why Froyo is important, and want it badly enough should know how to install it on their phone.

That said, I do still wish that I'd been able to buy a Nexus instead.

Jack Ketch

@nation of stupid

Comparing the retail costs is a bit misleading since Apple will be expecting to make money from apps/media and should be able to afford a tighter profit margin on the device.

Also the BOM that iSuppli provides doesn't, of course, take into account other manufacturing costs. It's easily conceivable that a smaller (yet similarly capable), or better built device would have a higher manufacturing cost.

US opts out of carbon trading

Jack Ketch
Black Helicopters

It's all a conspiracy against you!

"I really don't believe that the ice started melting and ended the ice age about 13,000 years ago (give or take some years) due to excess man-made carbon dioxide. And the ice age about 140,000 years ago certainly was not ended by man-made emissions."

So you are suggesting that because something happened in the past due to some factor, it is not possible that a similar thing would happen in the future due to some other factor?

And what do you suppose would be the effect on the climate of dumping billions of tonnes of carbon in the form of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, over a couple of centuries?

Let me guess...You're not sure, so let's just keep doing it and see what happens.

iPhone 4: the best built smartphone...

Jack Ketch


I don't think that iPhone usage is fundamentally any different than other high-end smartphone's. Perhaps the prevalence of the iPhone gives that illusion; if you see someone using a touchscreen phone, chances are it will be an iPhone. My own phone is often mistaken for an iPhone (Samsung Galaxy S); the 3G/S was undoubtedly the inspiration for it's design.

I can, however, see why owners of entry level smartphones may on the whole use them less frequently . The lumping of multiple handsets across feature/price ranges in this report does render it somewhat worthless.

Phone 7: Another Vista or another XP?

Jack Ketch
Gates Halo

The future is now

No clipboard: Check

Restricted third party background processes: Check

Cannot mount as USB drive: Check

No removable media: Check

Tied into bloated desktop application: Check

Just gotta work on getting rid of 3/4G and it'll be at least as good as the iPhone was 3 years ago.

Jack Ketch

There's always one...

And what do you need or want a smartphone to do?

Or are you simply not interested in smartphones?

Samsung pushes Galaxy S users a fix of Froyo

Jack Ketch

Reply to post: pushed out to Samsung's PC software?

It can receive OTA updates, but the SGS has also been designed to use the Kies desktop application for firmware updates (among other things).

Unfortunately, Kies is rather lamentable. It's only available for Windows and doesn't fully support Windows 7 64 (took me a number of hours to find the right workarounds for my system). Still, it's better than having to wait on the carriers and whatever mauled firmware they think their customers should have.

The new Froyo firmware does offer a minor speed increase to unmodified phones; however, Samsung has not addressed the underlying lag issue so the performance gains are barely noticable and the phone still feels sluggish in some areas (considering the hardware).

It's only after applying a lag fix (OCLF*) that I've felt that I'm getting the real potential out of the phone - it really flies now.

*Do this at your own risk.

Ten... Wireless Headphones

Jack Ketch
Thumb Up


I recently received a pair of SB2s and have been very happy with them. Sound quality is good. Had no problems pairing them with my Samsung Galaxy S and laptop for audio/voip. Mic seems to be well positioned. I even like the 'garish' styling.

Only problems I've had is that they tend to slip off my (shaved and slightly shrunken) bonce when I tilt my head too far forwards, and the track selection controls don't seem to work with the various Android media players that I've tried.

Samsung Galaxy S

Jack Ketch

Build quality

I haven't held a Desire so can't compare to that, but I can say that the SGS feels solidly built to me. Everything is flush and fits tightly together - no movement, rattling, or creaking under tension. There is no light leakage around the screen bezel.

The choice of an all plastic back doesn't scream premium, but I think that's more a design issue than a build quality issue. Personally, I'd prefer a rubberised plastic, but the plastic they've used is high grade, so it's both strong and light.

Jack Ketch
Jobs Horns

Easily fixed


Touch Wiz and Sense are both abominations (the former more so). First thing I did with my SGS was to install Launcher Pro and switch to the vanilla Froyo style. So much cleaner and more sophisticated. Actually works to Androids strengths too, unlike Touch Wiz which works against them.

Touch Wiz confuses the home screens with the more basic app menu on iPOS, so the default homescreen is at the far left. This doesn't suit many of the live wallpapers, and halves the number of homescreens available in one, two or three swipes. It's fine for a grid of app shortcuts, but homepages aren't used that way.

The bundled widgets are worthless so it's easy and painless to fix.

The iPad, news saviour? Murdoch may have something here

Jack Ketch

My eyes!

I'm sue the iPad is nice for watching videos and reading a bit of text, but full newspapers and books? Tablets need transflective screens or similar to become a viable alternative medium.


Jack Ketch


I've been using 3 for over two years and I've noticed a steady drop in performance in that time.

I use mainly during the working day - in Manchester city centre. There is a serious drop-off in performance between 11am-3pm with frequent disconnections and time-outs. From 12pm-2pm, I find myself having to reconnect every 2-3 page loads; it's virtually unusable. At other times, however, performance is great.

I suspect that the network is heavily overloaded in urban centres at least. Would be interested to know the timings of these tests.

'Steve Jobs' repeals AT&T iPhone prank

Jack Ketch

iFight Club

Anyone else reminded of Project Mayhem? I wonder if the Space Monkeys will be going after Fake Steve's balls....

MS exec gets shot down after 'inaccurate' Windows 7 spiel

Jack Ketch


Windows 7 was inspired, designed and developed by regular people sat in the back of taxis. Don't you guys know anything?

Nintendo Wii US sales 3x PS3, Xbox 360

Jack Ketch


Hopefully the next development will be around 'desktop VR with head tracking' (do a search for the term in the quotes if you're interested).

That would really take first person gaming to the next level, and should be possible with existing (Wii) hardware.

Manchester's congestion charge: pay-to-leave

Jack Ketch

Great news

Finally! A NuLab initiative that I can get on board with!

The money will go exactly where it's needed: Improving public transport. And more commuters will finally be able to ditch the car. The charge should help to discourage those drivers who will have a viable alternative form of transport available to them.

All in all this should make Manchester a more pleasant place to work and live, and will help to reduce carbon emissions.

It is unfortunate that many people are unable to cope with change, but the way we have become used to living is completely unsustainable and must change accordingly. If it needs a charge/fine/tax (however you wish to spin it) to achieve this then so be it - there are greater things at stake than maintaining your comfort zone!

Carphone Warehouse cleared out of 8GB iPhones

Jack Ketch


Um...I do. The £35 a month contract is by no means exceptional. And is pretty standard for a contract which includes anytime, any network minutes. Claiming that the full price of the contract is entirely for the handset is rather disingenuous. For the record, I do not own an iPhone.

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