* Posts by Geoff Campbell

1462 posts • joined 13 Jun 2008

BlackBerry's QNX to run autonomous car software

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Toyota

Trouble is, quoting the Toyota infotainment systems as an example is enough to make me run screaming from the room.

I'm a reasonably loyal Toyota customer, I've bought 5 cars from them so far, but the ICE and SatNav systems are universally *dreadful*. Now, I'm sure this isn't the fault of QNX, but...

GJC

2
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Sweet Christmas: Micron more than triples SSD capacity with 9200

Geoff Campbell

<quiet sobbing from the corner>

I mean, I want one. Half a dozen, actually. But what would I do with them?

GJC

0
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Salesforce sacks two top security engineers for their DEF CON talk

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: Hold on a second....

Most likely someone pointed out that their employment contracts had some quite reasonable clauses around company information both during and after employment.

GJC

8
2

The ultimate full English breakfast – have your SAY

Geoff Campbell

Re: Runny yokes

I am very, very mildly OCD. I only realised this fairly recently, when I read that reacting badly to mixtures of runny foods was a classic symptom.

I grew up in a classic '70s household, where fried eggs with runny yolks were a staple foodstuff, served at least once a day, not least because we kept some chickens so they were essentially free. Always with lashings of ketchup. Which is a combination that triggers a really, really violent revulsion in me to this day.

I've only relatively recently understood that it wasn't the eggs that were the problem, just the mixture of runny yolk and ketchup. I can now eat omelettes and scrambled eggs, and I even managed a fried egg last year, albeit with a yolk very much on the solid end of the spectrum.

GJC

2
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Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Scrambled eggs

I make scrambled eggs by frying them in butter. There is no other way.

However, eggs are an abomination, and have no place in a decent breakfast. Lots of Vitamin P, some mushrooms and fried tomatoes. Black pudding is mandatory. Beans optional, but not for me, thanks. Tinned tomatoes are also an abomination, and should be reserved for chilli con carne.

Tomato sauce? What are you, five years old? In what universe does any meal require cheap sauces from bottles?

GJC

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€100 'typewriter' turns out to be €45,000 Enigma machine

Geoff Campbell
Pint

Re: There is quite a bit of that floating around Eastern Europe

Shame, they're nice bikes - I've got a 1973 R75/5. Remarkably long-lived model, too, available in very similar forms from 1936 all the way into the '90s.

GJC

5
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The life and times of Surface, Microsoft's odds-defying fondleslab

Geoff Campbell
Linux

Re: Linux

Probably. Have you tried?

GJC

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Windows Insiders with SD cards turn into OneDrive outsiders

Geoff Campbell
WTF?

Re: Uninstall OneDrive

Is that what the customers ask you to do? Or do you impose a crippled system on them because you hate them?

It's no wonder some people hate the IT industry.

GJC

5
27

London suffers from 'sub-standard' connectivity - report

Geoff Campbell
Coat

Re: Londoners whining about how poorly served they are?

Just the one Londoner in this week, then? I was expecting more :-)

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Londoners whining about how poorly served they are?

They could, like, move somewhere else, rather than piling up like rats in a sewer. Just a thought...

GJC

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Australian govt promises to push Five Eyes nations to break encryption

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: Bwahahahahahaha!

All of us? Every single programmer, techie, mathematician, solver of cryptic crosswords, and general nerd?

They're gonna need a bigger prison.

GJC

30
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Geoff Campbell
Mushroom

Bwahahahahahaha!

Yeah, good luck with that, guys. You're not even fit to carry our floppy disks. If we want encryption, we will have encryption, and there's not a damn thing you can do about it.

GJC

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SpaceX nails two launches and barge landings in one weekend

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Fly-tipping

Oh, that's easy - use the hollowed-out asteroids to live in.

GJC

10
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Tavis Ormandy to Microsoft: Have another Windows Defender vuln

Geoff Campbell
Pint

Re: "including wild eip"

No - prog rock band from the '70s.

GJC

1
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Currys PC World given a spanking for misleading laptop savings ads

Geoff Campbell

I've had a few reasonable laptops from them. There's normally something on "offer" at around £350 which will be perfectly usable for a couple of years.

There's no way I'd buy a premium model from them, however.

GJC

8
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Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

Geoff Campbell
Thumb Up

Re: Fidelity portable

Have an up-vote in memory of Jon Lord, may he forever RIP.

GJC

5
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Today's bonkers bug report: Microsoft Edge can't print numbers

Geoff Campbell

Re: Colour me unsurprised

Surely true black can be rendered in RGB, with a value of 0,0,0?

GJC

1
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Capita's huge role in UK government should go under the spotlight

Geoff Campbell
Mushroom

Re: "three million [licence] enforcement visits were carried out in 2015–16"

We had a bunch of visits from them when my Mother-in-law lived with us, as she got a free TV licence we didn't need to pay for one. As it was registered in her name and the house is (obviously) registered in our name, the cretins at Capita couldn't work out that we had a valid licence.

I didn't help them at all. Every single time:

<Bing-bong>

Them: "Mr. Campbell?"

Me: "Can I help you?"

Them: "Mr. Campbell?"

Me: "Can I help you?"

Them: "Mr. Campbell?"

Me: "Can I help you?"

Them: "We do not have any record of a TV licence at this address, would you show us a valid TV licence?"

Me: "No, I will not."

Them: "Can we come in and check for an operational TV set?"

Me: "No, you can not."

etc., etc., until they leave, threatening legal proceedings, plagues of frogs and boils, the end of civilisation as we know it.

Unfortunately they called when I was out one day, and the wife showed them the licence. Spoils all my fun, sometimes.

GJC

5
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Microsoft wants screaming Windows fans, not just users

Geoff Campbell

Re: I rather like Windows 10.

<shrug>

It is just an OS. You don't like it, choose a different OS. Since when has that been some great revelation? Choose the solutions that work for you, in a way you like. If a supplier takes decisions you don't like, don't buy their products.

Right, I'm out of here. I have better things to be doing with my time, or at least things to do for people who are nagging me more than this thread.

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell

Re: I rather like Windows 10.

"What is it you don't understand about this?"

...and there it is, right there.

I understand perfectly fine. Remember where we came in? I said "I rather like Windows 10" and predicted that this wouldn't be a popular viewpoint.

I did not, at any point, claim that Windows 10 would suit all needs, or that it was the perfect incarnation of a completely fault-free OS - because such a thing has never existed, in all the 35 years or so I've been working in this wonderful industry of ours.

But because it's Windows 10, my simple statement that I rather like it, and that it meets my needs perfectly, brings down the wrath of, well, pretty much everyone.

Fortunately, I'm a big boy now, so I can contain my disappointment. But perhaps a little introspection as to what you are arguing against might be in order?

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell
Pint

Re: I rather like Windows 10.

New? Bless you and your short eyesight...

Thing is, Windows 10 *is* just an OS, and still people are getting angry about it. You don't like it, that's fine, select something else that you do like. Problem solved, move on...

Going back to your friend's sign cutter as an excellent example, why do they have to run Windows 10 on that machine, right now? There are plenty of other options, including currently-supported versions of Windows, that they could run. My point about talking to the supplier is about the correct aiming of ire - if their drivers don't work on Windows 10, that is down to them to fix, not Microsoft.

Anyway, I think that'll do for now. I do so enjoy acting as a lightning conductor for mis-placed anti-Microsoft rants, but I can only keep up the conversation for so long.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

That seems a rather self-referential argument - "Apple haven't done it, therefore it's not the right way to do it".

I definitely like the direction Microsoft have taken, and I think they have a good chance of pulling off the Holy Grail of completely unifying the desktop and mobile environments, eventually. It's not there yet, certainly, there's lots more to come on the roadmap.

For now, I'm perfectly happy with the Windows 10 UI across my desktop, Surface Pro "laptop", and phone (recently changed from an Android device). I do a lot of work out on the road, on customer site, in hotel rooms, and the combined environment works perfectly for me.

As I've already said, if others want to use other approaches and technologies, that's fine by me. I really wish we could move past the angry, tribal bullshit that the entire IT world has sunk into.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Huh?

It's a great desktop OS. What're your problems with it on a desktop PC?

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Pint

Re: I rather like Windows 10.

Media Centre does still run on Windows 10 (as I understand it, I've not tried it yet), although official support has been dropped. I'm still making up my mind as to whether to rebuild my Media Centre box on Windows 10 with the unofficial installation, or to drop broadcast TV and rebuild the box purely for Internet TV and local media, something I've been toying with for a long time. In the mean time, the box continues to run Media Centre and Windows 8.1 with full support from Microsoft. No drama.

I cannot speak for your friend's sign cutter. Perhaps he needs to talk to the supplier?

Drugs - a whole cocktail, some medical, some just for fun. You?

I really don't understand the anger this subject raises. It's just an operating system, dude!

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell
Holmes

Re: I rather like Windows 10.

To expand:

I like Windows 10 for the only reason anyone should ever like an OS - it meets my needs, with the minimum of drama. In combination with Office 365, it does everything I need in terms of basic IT across all platforms, and causes me no pain at all in doing so. More advanced needs require additional applications, all of which run on Windows 10 or the Server equivalents, also with no drama.

Telling me that I must be a masochist because of those choices is rather pre-supposing a whole bunch of things, and is not useful to the debate in any way. Most importantly, it pre-supposes that I'm too bloody stupid to have looked at the alternatives and evaluated them for my own requirements, which is frankly rather insulting.

Choose your own OS, and your own applications, for your own requirements. And then extend the same courtesy to others. Simple, really, isn't it?

GJC

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Geoff Campbell
Gimp

I rather like Windows 10.

I also think that Microsoft are the only company showing real innovation in the OS market currently.

Yeah, I know. Your downvotes fall upon me like gentle rain, and with just as much long-term effect on my views.

But before you downvote this post, ask yourself just why you care enough to do so? What are you trying to demonstrate?

GJC

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Samsung Galaxy S8: Slimmer bezels, a desktop mode – and yet another me-too AI pal

Geoff Campbell

Re: Nice

The camera on the S7 was absolutely beautiful, and possibly just edged the 950XL on usability and picture quality, so I'm guessing that the S8 camera will be at least as good.

But I would suggest that you are perhaps choosing just the wrong time to switch away from Windows Mobile. I've just switched to it in the 950XL fire-sale, and there's lot to like about both the current offering, and more importantly the roadmap of coming features.

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell

It's coming. Windows on ARM will support full Win32 applications.

GJC

2
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Inside Intel's Optanical garden

Geoff Campbell
Pirate

Re: Not going to succeed.

Good, that'll sort the men from the boys. Or the women from the girls, of course.

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Not going to succeed.

It's early days yet.

The most interesting thing about XPoint for me, is the evolution of machines with a few TB of memory-bus near-DRAM-speed storage that persists through power cycles. That should open up a whole bunch of new ways of structuring data on the local machines, when the software catches up with the possibilities.

We'll see. For now, a faster SSD that's waiting on a faster interface seems OK to me.

GJC

7
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One in five mobile phones shipped abroad are phoney – report

Geoff Campbell

Re: Guess where it is made.

Swindon?

GJC

2
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Douglas Coupland: The average IQ is now 103 and the present is melting into the future

Geoff Campbell
Boffin

Re: Misquote from Wlliam Gibson

Yes, to a point. Surely it was ever thus, though? All new technologies more complicated than knapped flint took time to spread throughout the world. I don't see why computer and comms technology should be any different to steam engines in that respect.

GJC

2
0

BlackBerry's comeback: El Reg gets its claws on the QWERTY KEYone

Geoff Campbell

Notable =/= Best

The quote said the battery life was the phone's best feature.

Long battery life is notable in the current market, sure, but when it's the best thing you can say about a phone, I'd say that is damning with faint praise, personally.

GJC

1
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Ooops! One in three tech IPOs now trading below their starting price

Geoff Campbell

Re: Why?

Seems to be.

Although to be fair to Facebook, they also make money from sales of game services, too. This used to be a big earner for them, back in the Farmville days, I don't know what the current figures are.

GJC

4
0

Robo-supercar hype biz Faraday Future has invented something – a new word for 'disrupt'

Geoff Campbell
Go

Re: Are we nearly there yet...?

Formula E will be changing to one car for the whole race for the 2018 season, with McLaren supplying a new design of battery pack.

Tesla do have a fully automated battery-swap station designed and ready to go, I think there's only one currently installed, in California somewhere. There's a video from a few years back showing two battery swaps in the time it took to fill up the tank on a 4x4. Ultimately, I don't think that will really work in the mass market, though. It seems current owners are happy with the Supercharger network, and they are going to get faster shortly too, as I understand it.

GJC

1
0

My fortnight eating Blighty's own human fart-powder

Geoff Campbell
Windows

Hipsters discover SlimFast...

Truly, there's nothing new under the sun.

To all those eulogising real food, absolutely - I live to eat. But sometimes it's not convenient to prepare a meal from fresh ingredients, so I fall back on something prepared. And one day, that might be Huel or one of the many competitors we are no doubt about to encounter. Life isn't perfect, sometimes a bit of convenience is OK.

GJC

10
1

MH370 hunters call for new search of extra 25,000km2

Geoff Campbell

Re: Metadata is more accurately "data that describes the structure of data"

That seems to me to be based on a fundamental misunderstanding of a bunch of things, not least the function of something like an MP3 header tag.

It is theoretically just as possible to find a given MP3 file by searching for a given sequence of bytes in the sound data, if rather less human-friendly. Does this make the blocks of sound data into metadata? How about the index number of a record in a database, are they metadata? (hint: No, to both questions).

That NISO paper seems to me to be justifying the existing misuse by redefining the term, rather than acting as any kind of authoritative source reference. In many ways "Descriptive metadata" in that context is an oxymoron. I'm not going to read the whole thing, but I suspect that "Administrative metadata" is similarly an oxymoron, and "Structural metadata" is a tautology.

GJC

1
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Geoff Campbell

Re: Congratulations!

Metadata is more accurately "data that describes the structure of data". The most obvious misuse of the term is things like MP3 header tags, which *name* each individual set of data, rather than *describing* its structure.

If there is more than one of something in a given collection of data, it ain't metadata. Hence, "additional data that was ABOUT the data that was transmitted" is just more data. Data about the location of the readings is also just data.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Congratulations!

Thank you! It's been a few months since I managed such a feat :-)

What can I say? It's one of those misuses of terms that really gets under my skin, for some reason.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

Re: Congratulations!

That's still not metadata. It's just data.

GJC

5
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Geoff Campbell
Mushroom

Congratulations!

You win today's award for "Most heinously gratuitous misuse of the currently fashionable but utterly misunderstood word 'metadata' in a supposedly technical journal".

Please don't do it again.

GJC

2
9

IBM staff petition for right not to work on Trump's pet projects

Geoff Campbell
Pirate

A principle is not a principle until it has cost you money.

Until then, it is just an opinion, and everyone's got a bunch of those.

If you don't want to work on a project your employer puts you on, ask for a transfer. If they refuse, resign. It's not a complicated proposition.

GJC

19
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Crim charges slapped on copyright trolls who filmed porn, torrented it then sued downloaders

Geoff Campbell
Thumb Up

Splendid!

Send 'em down.

Now, who's next on the list?

GJC

0
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Governments 'one step behind' tech firms in tracking tax – Meg Hillier

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

No shit?

Have they really only just realised this, or is this a PR gambit as the first step in them giving up trying altogether?

GJC

0
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Windows 10 market share growth just barely has a pulse

Geoff Campbell
Windows

Re: Nokia phones

We'll see. If Nokia release a standard me-too mid-range Android device, I suspect they'll fail spectacularly. If they do something original, they might do well. Can;t imagine what that might be, though.

Microsoft already have something unique and original. They just need the devices to support it, now.

GJC

0
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Geoff Campbell
Windows

For me...

...the impetus was desktop-to-phone integration, and the impetus for the phone was the Display Dock and Continuum.

I really hope they get around to releasing a Surface Phone sometime soon.

(Yes, yes, I know I'll get downvoted for having the temerity to say something good about Microsoft. Do you think I care?)

GJC

2
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Lenovo: If you value your server, block Microsoft's November security update

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Wait, what?

Lenovo make servers? Who knew?

GJC

0
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Deliver-oops! Takeaway pusher's customers burger-ed by hijackers

Geoff Campbell

Re: "The three-year-old startup ought to require the CVV2 code on bank cards..."

Convenience. Who wants to enter a card number every time? Even with form-completion stuff in the browser it soon gets pretty old.

GJC

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Geoff Campbell

"checking the address on orders is close to or the same as pre-registered addresses."

I do hope not. I only ever use this sort of service when staying away from home.

GJC

2
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AI is all trendy and fun – but it's still a long way from true intelligence, Facebook boffins admit

Geoff Campbell
Facepalm

Re: Facebook boffins

Really? You've met them, then?

GJC

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