* Posts by h4rm0ny

4617 posts • joined 26 Jul 2008

Microsoft opens Windows Phone 8 dev kit to world+dog

h4rm0ny

Re: $8 (eight) for the introductory offer.

"Really? I would think just a simple username/password attached to an admin account would work."

You misunderstand. The aim is not to secure the device from other people, but to secure it from the typical user which leads to masses of untested, unverified software going round everywhere. Effectively, there are two levels of cost - normal, and normal + $99 for the open device. Obviously *you* are happy with having the device open to unapproved software and that's a supportable position. But similarly there are consequences if it isn't. The entire history of Windows on the Desktop shows that quite clearly.

"That or just not lending your device to all and sundry. Don't make excuses for Microsoft trying to monetize the shit out of everything. A fee is entirely unnecessary to allow someone to do what they want with what they own."

Well that's a fair point. I'm just stating that if someone wishes to develop software, this cost is pretty much an incidental. And they don't even need to pay it until quite late in the process so it doesn't discourage the casual developer or learner. It's a small cost to a developer or company, but has a significant effect on the ecosystem. Good or bad, not 100% either, imo. But depends where you're coming from. I just object to it being waved around as some conclusive advantage for one platform over another. No remotely serious app developer chooses their platform based on a developer licence cost of $99. They do it on potential market, availability of expertise, niceness of the development environment, integration with existing projects sometimes. But not that fee. It's an irrelevance for the purposes it was used for in this debate. That's my point.

h4rm0ny

" The clue is in the word "express", and it doesn't mean fast... it means cut down..."

So if you're not happy with the very nice free version of Visual Studio (have you actually used it much?) then use something else. It's not as though you're forced to use Visual Studio. You can write Windows code in a text editor if you want to!

h4rm0ny

Re: @AC

"Not good enough. If you check the details on the offer you'll notice that you don't simply apply and pay $ 8,-. No, instead MS charges the regular fee of $100,- and will credit $91,- to your credit card. Sorry but that really doesn't appeal to me at the very least. Why all the hassle? "

It's hardly a big hassle. Make a payment once and forget about it. The result in both effort and cost is the same . $8 = $0 - $100 + $92. If some internal process makes that simpler for MS, I don't care. And I think only someone who is actively looking for objections would see this as a barrier.

"I'd be happy to apply for $8,- but that's not how it works."

It is to all intents and purposes so honestly, I don't really believe you.

h4rm0ny

Re: $8 (eight) for the introductory offer.

"However, how is a 32" not-touch monitor going to emulate multi-touch? Or non-mocked GPS? Accelerometers? Gyroes? Cameras? Any of the myriad extra bits of hardware on a real phone or tablet?"

Then get a touch enabled monitor or device. MS are not going to buy your development hardware for you. Really, it's pretty much necessary that there be some barrier such as a fee, to stop anything being installed on a device by anyone otherwise the whole security model collapses. A development licence is one way to do that and $99 is a pittance in terms of development costs. I've charged more than that for just an hours work. Any professional has costs that render this insignificant. And for the amateur who just wants to dip their toe in, as pointed out there is a virtual environment.

"That and emulators have a tendency to run like frozen pigshit uphill in Winter compared with the real hardware. "

Really? You think a modern multi-core x86 computer with double or more the RAM cannot easily emulate a low-memory ARM device? I haven't used the WP8 emulator, but unless you have, I see no reason to believe the above statement.

h4rm0ny

Re: $8 (eight) for the introductory offer.

"That to was register as a dev, not to unlock the phone. How much is it to unlock the phone?"

On the other hand, MS also provide a complete virtualised phone to develop against. So you don't technically need an unlocked phone to develop. Besides £90 is a very small part of the cost of developing new software.

h4rm0ny

"Microsofts own VS Express tools are free of charge. Third party and open source SharpDX, Orge, Unity, Cocos2d etc. available or promised. Not a bad start."

Furthermore, the Professional version of Visual Studio (not that you can't use Express), costs £500 which is a very low cost compared to the others you'll face in development. That's significantly less than the cost of employing one programmer for one week. Sure, it would be nice if the Professional version were free like the Express, but £500 is a small cost of business and if you're just doing RT or WP8 apps, I think you only have to have the free Express version.

Privacy group damns Ubuntu's Amazon search marriage

h4rm0ny

Re: Gnome 3 started this

"'m an 'RPM hater' (for over 10 years now I've avoided any system that uses them) so couldn't possibly comment on RHEL/CentOS etc. But I feel confident in saying that there are better alternatives for the Ubuntu refugee."

Debian. It's what Ubuntu is based on. And I'm with you on RPMs.

Forgetting Microsoft: How Steve Ballmer's Surface could win

h4rm0ny

Re: Short Microsoft

Interesting advice. Are you yourself risking your money by shorting MS or is this just advice for other people's money? Because if the former, I think you're rather brave given the continued positive sales of Win7 and general positive feedback and coverage of Win8, RT and WP8. And if you're not willing to risk your money on this, do you think it's good to advise others to do so?

h4rm0ny

Re: > "Tech used to be exciting. "

"The exciting was that better tech arrived and got cheaper over time."

Really? To me the excitement has always been to see our species push the bounds of what is possible and the amazement that such things can become commonplace where once they were science-fiction. But you think "better tech" is not arriving and getting cheaper? How much would a device like the iPad cost you ten years ago? What were touch screens like just five years ago? If you don't feel the excitement of progress then you need to wake up.

"Now there is little appreciable benefit to buying a faster CPU/GPU/disk, for most people, except to run AV faster."

What about how they get smaller, using less power, enabling you to do one a phone all day what you couldn't do on a Desktop plugged into the wall just twelve years ago? And what about those other than "most people". Isn't it cool that I can now run Postgres on a system with six cores and 12GB of RAM at home. Isn't it awesome that I can rent a few servers for hosting and modern virtualization technology integrated into the CPUs enables the company at the other end to just press a few buttons and create those instances for me, rather than actually needing a real machine? Leading to massive efficiency gains and far reduced maintenance costs and increased reliability?

"While a larger-than-27"-screen is possible, it isn't easy to fit on a desk and becomes a bit overwhelming for normal work."

Who cares? You can't look at something like the HP Z1 All in One, or the new iMac and not think: "woah". Not if you have any feel for technology or not.

"I don't know of anyone who's considering 128bit cpu's."

There's a lot more to CPU development than the size of the registers. And we're not just talking about CPUs any more. AMD is going down the APU route and these have positive implications for portable devices and cheaper graphics power with better efficiency. I've not much interest in games, but they continue to get more and more amazing with every year.

"We could get better GPUs for realtime photo-realistic rendering but that isn't needed by most people "

I don't think we could, actually. Real time photo-realistic rendering is way beyond current technology. But it is wanted by people - better graphics will be for a long time. GPUs get more and more powerful and games take advantage of that. Again - it's exciting just to watch the pace of development.

"Software is incredibly bloated. I downloaded MS' ATI driver the other day - 9MB. ATI's own download came in at 150MB and their "detect hardware" didn't work on an old X1600 system."

WinRT is customized to the hardware to an impressive degree from what I've seen. Same with WP7. Win8 actually runs faster and tighter than Win7 on my same system. And if you really want lean, run Gentoo or some other compile-your-own Linux distribution. You can strip it to nothing. And if you think download size equates to memory footprint, you're mistaken. A module installed but not loaded into the kernel to run has an almost impercetible difference on the size of the kernel and the running code. Just because you got a 150MB download (which is a tiny fraction of modern storage), doesn't mean 150MB is loaded and running in your system. Also, modern GPUs are massively more sophisticated than those of yore.

"Now the excitement is in cheap, less capable things - ARM chips and putting things in new places - phones etc. Even GPS and motion sensors are old hat."

You are so fucking jaded. Read into this stuff in more depth. Technology is amazing.

h4rm0ny

Re: I use Bing because I prefer the layout?

That's an interesting one. You quoted the first five links on each page. Three of the five on each side are duplicated on the other with two different in each case. I've just tried your search to see what the rest of the page is and one of the ones missing from the top five ("Assay joins Canonical...") is present in the other just

not in the top five and one of the ones you list as not showing up in the top five actually does for me. Which might be regional differences (I'm in the UK for reference).

I'm not sure if you were posting to agree with me or disagree with me or just for interest, but it seems for the top five results on a page, we get a a lot of duplication, which rises if you go beyond the first five results. For instance, all of the five you listed for Google show up on the Bing page (with the exception of a story about Matt joining Strobe) and Google has all of the Bing ones except for The Channel link which it is missing. Again, I'm not sure if you were making a specific point or just commenting, but it seems to demonstrate what I said: if I'm looking for stuff on Matt Assay, I get all the major links in both search engines' first page. Just not necessarily the same ones in the top five (though three of them are).

h4rm0ny

"Tech used to be exciting. "

It still is. It's just some here are more interested in hating company X or Y to see what cool stuff they are doing.

h4rm0ny

Re: Consolidated Microsoft?

"I thought that's just what they've already done - dump its hardware partners or delivery people as they're known in Redmond"

You may not have noticed all the brand new devices and designs from Lenovo, Toshiba, Dell, Acer, Asus, probably others.You may also not have noticed that MS have produced a quite limited number of Surface devices. Just looking at devices like the Samsung Ativ SmartPC it's obvious that it's been developed in close partnership with MS - you can't roll out a device like that at the start of an OS release without long-term and very active support from the OS producer. MS obviously have not "dumped its hardware partners" nor is it in their interests to do so. Your impression is very much at odds with the facts.

h4rm0ny

Re: Baahhhaaa

That's interesting. They certainly both remember some stuff. But do they actually use previous searches to influence new searches? Genuinely interested if so in how that works.

h4rm0ny

Re: Business business business

"I can't see Microsoft making serious inroads into the consumer space with the Surface - the price is just too high."

I really don't think they want to. If that was the plan, they would have made more and would be more bullish about extending the line. The Surface is almost certainly focused on two main goals. The first is to provide an impressive demonstration platform for the new Windows 8 and Windows RT OS. The second is as a pace-maker to the OEMs to get them to raise their game. The real question is not really whether they make inroads into the consumer space with the Surface, but whether they make inroads with Win8 and WinRT in general. And this encompasses not just the Surface at their given price point, but all sorts of other products from Lenovo, Samsung, Acer, Asus, Toshiba... pitched at different prices and with all sorts of different capabilities. It's the biggest thing to shake up the hardware market in years. Looking at designs like Dell's hybrid (with it's weird but cool swivel screen), Samsung's Ativ Smart PC (awesome active digitiser from what I've read), Lenovo's Yoga, the Surface itself, it feels like we're living in the Cambrian era prior to the mass extinctions. A massive array of wildly different lifeforms all competing to see what works and what will take off. If Surface only sells out its first run and they never do a second, MS will probably still be fine like that. Unlike Google with the Chromebook or Amazon's device which subsidize hoping to lock people in to buying more content for a long time afterwards, MS are making a healthy profit on each unit, I should think. Total Surface sales numbers are a small part of how things play out.

h4rm0ny

Re: Baahhhaaa

"@harmony - You're using a different bing to the one I occasionally visit then. Bing is pretty awful at returning relevant results. All that's a failure given that all the SEO's are gaming google."

You've skipped the part of my post where I asked for a few examples of search terms that returned relevant results in Google but not in Bing.

h4rm0ny

Re: Baahhhaaa

"Really? Did you just put Microsoft's services onpar with Google and Gmail, seriously????"

Bing and Google seem to return similar results to me. I use Bing because I prefer the layout. I only switch back to Google if I want to search newsgroups, which I haven't done in some time. Do you have examples of search terms that return relevant information in Google but not in Bing? If not, then your comment is mistaken. As to Outlook.com vs. Gmail. What makes Outlook.com inferior (genuine question)?

h4rm0ny

What an enormous pile of unsupported conjecture.

Statements that would require a bit of support in any essay.

"But owning the desktop is like being the sexiest nun in the convent"

Global PC shipments were 351 million per year in 2010 according to Gartner. And it had been rising year on year up to that point. Has it abruptly nose-dived in the last two years, then? Probably not. So actually owning the desktop is less like "being the sexiest nun in the convent" and more like "being the provider of hundreds of millions of products to enterprise and home use every year." I feel that the original analogy therefore doesn't quite work.

And note that whilst laptops have been increasingly taking away from desktop machines, that's not yet been the same market segment as the tablet market (as tablets haven't yet filled the productivity requirement for most people). So if you want to extend the discussion to laptops, it doesn't really take away there either as MS have the lion's share of that market too. So a nun that is sexier than it's non-nun friend as well, I suppose. Analogies are not an argument. Particularly bad ones.

What else ? This :

"Microsoft put on a good show last week at its Windows 8 launch, but the only thing that really matters is how well Windows performs in mobile device markets."

The only thing? Hardly. MS are establishing an integrated ecosystem both in business and in the home. Success with home gaming and media, e.g. via the Xbox, obviously matters because this provides a big incentive to people to go down the MS route with their mobile devices. Smartglass is really impressive. MS's presence in the corporate market also provides a big enticement to go down the MS route with mobile devices. Everywhere you read "SkyDrive" you can substitute your corporate cloud service if you choose. MS have a really strong business set up for BYOD which is one of the next big things with this. Both of these areas feed in massively to the success of mobile devices. And that ties directly into the success of the Surface and OEM Windows 8 / RT devices too. What the Hell does "only thing that matters is... mobile devices" mean? Desktop, entertainment (games, music, movies), MS Office, services (Azure, Office 365, Sharepoint), server market (Server 2012) all matter enormously to the success of MS and also stimulate the mobile devices market. The "only matters" statement is worthless.

"Given Microsoft's continued reliance on an outdated, licence-based revenue model, Microsoft may have an uphill battle winning in mobile"

Outdated? It makes them over fifteen billion annually. It works and will continue to work for a long time. And what's the replacement models? Software as a service? Okay... Office 365, Azure... MS are doing this already. Or is Matt Assay arguing that the revenue model is outdated by Google's ad-based model. Riiggght. I can see Google out-fitting and supporting a massive IT roll out through ad-supported. Matt talks about selling devices "free hardware") through selling of content. Great - I'll have a five-hundred touchscreen laptops for my company, please. I can't promise that they'll be used to buy many ebooks or games, though. You're alright with that Amazon and Google, yes? Matt's statement shows a staggering lack of contextual awareness.

"And when that happens, Microsoft (and, eventually, Apple) can kiss goodbye to the developer ecosystem critical to winning over users. Developers go where the volume is, and that volume is Google's to lose."

Again, unsupported and lacking in understanding of basic market economics. Sellers (developers in this case) don't go "where the volume is", they go where the sales are. Different things. Matt should look up "market segmentation". There is a massive install base of Windows - their mobile device ecosystem overlaps with their entertainment and corporate presences which is hardly the case with Google and Apple and they have the resource to stay the course for decades to come. MS isn't going anywhere as a market. Even if MS only got 30% of the market, that would be more than sufficient to provide an incentive for developers. Even 10% would.

Vegetarians make up approximately 4% of the UK population. By Matt's logic, supermarkets would not sell specifically vegetarian-marketed food because "they go where the volume is" and yet I see shelves of Quorn, meat substitutes, vegetarian cheese. Garages would not stock parts for porsches. By Matt's logic, Android could never have got off the ground because at the time it appeared, the "volume" was iOS. A market doesn't have to have more than 50% to make it profitable to exploit. If you can see the flaw in any of my examples, then you can see the flaw in Matt's logic. I use the word tentatively.

"Microsoft could pull an Apple and sell a consolidated device like the Surface. I mean, really pull an Apple and dump its hardware partners."

No they couldn't. Doing this would immediately drive their partners to embrace Android and Linux en masse in sheer desperation. MS loves its partners, is tied to them, and quite frankly wants them to do well. That's obvious from their behaviour with the Surface.

"Apple is happy to occupy the premium segment of the market, even as Google's Android takes the mass-market lower-end"

You can buy high-end non-Apple devices. Always have been able to and they sell well enough. And as seen with the Surface, MS can produce something just as high-end as Apple. As to the low-end, MS are happy to compete there too. I have the Lumia 710. Got it for £160 SIM-free and it's even cheaper now. Great litle device and cheaper than many Android devices. And there are still WP7 devices being released so it's not cheap because it's old, it's targetted at this segment.

Almost nothing in this article is actually supported. It's just random statements, usually in contradiction to the actual facts or history. How can the author of this essay be "Vice President of Corporate Strategy". I think he actually just writes these articles in order to pick up clues from all the better informed people who respond. If that's the case, then clever, clever Matt. You can hire me as an actual consultant directly if you like. This post is a freebie.

Nokia primes Lumias for Windows Phone 8 push

h4rm0ny

Re: Meh - 2010 specs - no thanks.

"I'm fairly sure that most of the open source browsers are compiled using GCC for Windows, although I welcome being corrected on that because I'm not 100% sure on that point."

I've just looked at the compiler information for Firefox running on my Windows 7 box (you can get this from Help->Troubleshooting information and rooting around), and it looks like Visual Studo was used to me. Also searching for compile instructions for Firefox all returns Visual Studio. I can't check Chrome directly as I don't have it installed on this machine, but the build instructions at chromium.org are for Visual Studio. Am not a Windows programmer so don't know whether to be surprised by this or not. If I'd had to guess without looking I probably would have said GCC just because...well, Open Source.

Apple turns off Siri’s potty mouth

h4rm0ny

Hmmm... One downvote from someone who obviously doesn't like Doctor Who. Davros, is that you?

h4rm0ny
Coat

A little obscure but there is also Mentos in the Doctor Who audio adventure: "The One Doctor" (link) which contains the classic exchange:

Computer: "I am Mentos. The ultimate repository of knowledge. There is nothing that I cannot answer."

Doctor (Colin Baker): "I bet I can ask you a question that you can't answer."

Computer: "Very well. But so long as it's not one of those tricky fox-the-computer questions like 'if my next statement is a lie...' sort of thing."

Computer: "Because I can answer those."

Doctor: "Oh."

Mines the one with pockets. ;)

Hmm, I think I'll order an iPad Mini on Amazon ... Oh no I won't

h4rm0ny
Joke

"A retailer comparing devices and cost instead of litigation?"

Competition - the one thing Apple don't have a patent on.

h4rm0ny

Re: Both products are a big fail.

@Gussy2000 (or other Kindle Fire owner).

As you have one, can you tell me how open the device is? Personally both the iPad mini and Kindle Fire look like fun devices. But the price differential makes it obvious that the Kindle is subsidized with the expectation they'll make more money from content purchases. So how open is the Kindle? Can you play movies, get books, buy music from anywhere or does it have to be via the Amazon store? Any gotchas with it of that nature?

Pre-ordered a Microsoft Surface? So SORRY it's late, have a voucher

h4rm0ny

Re: Article in brief.

"Real geeks don't go near Microsoft products,"

Geek is a bizarre cultural export from the American school system where people can't think outside of stereotypes of athletic types and weedy but smart comic book readers. Whether "real geeks" use MS products or not, has little bearing on what professional programmers and IT experts use.

h4rm0ny

Re: $50 compensation from from Microsoft Must be spent at

How is it a scam? They sent people $50 worth of credit at their store, good for a year. Scams cost you something. This gives you something.

h4rm0ny

Re: Ah Microsoft,

So?

Microsoft's 'official' Windows 8 Survival Guide leaks

h4rm0ny

I can see why they removed the Rate This Article option.

I'm sure it looks funny to the author, but to those of us who manage fine on Windows 8 and don't find it confusing or disorientating, it just seems contrived.

Salesforce CEO Benioff: Win 8 is 'the end of Windows'

h4rm0ny

Re: For someone who lives in a big city

"Well Linux is versatile. Android has very little to do with the Linux you would want to have on your desktop. It's dumbed and locked down, and only uses Linux as a kernel for it's own Java-based system."

However, it's influence is so great now that Android extensions are now being back-ported into the kernel.

h4rm0ny

Re: Microsoft agrees.

"Yes. That would be products like Microsoft Small Business Server. It isn't available to me. It has been cut. They are pushing cloudy products like Office 365. It appears (from my small corner, which is small business), to be the end of Windows."

Yes, they're pushing the new products, but you could just get Server 2012 for your business, yes? That does everything that Small Business Server did (and more) doesn't it? And you can still buy non-365 Office. That's not going to go away any time in the forseeable future. MS will still sell you products that meet all the functionality of previous products.

h4rm0ny

Re: Microsoft agrees.

"We have already been cut off"

What does this mean? Are you meaning that MS products aren't available to you?

h4rm0ny

Re: I'll argue the difficult

"I however insist that the files are able to be stored exclusively locally. Office should not be software as a service, but instead should run as an app on my company's local servers. Microsoft has no business storing my files on their servers."

Agree with this, but Skyrive that comes with your personally bought device that you or I might buy in a shop is intended for us, not enterprise or business. A proper enterprise operation (imo) will be hosting their own cloud. I.e. they run a Server 2012 install (or more). The thing some people miss is that Skydrive is a default. It doesn't mean you can't replace it with your own cloud. But agree with your post - it's just I've seen people here talking as if Skydrive were some integral and necessary part of Win8.

My main problem with MS's Azure service, is that last time I checked (would love to find out they've changed it but not aware they have), they couldn't guarantee that they would run a server purely in the EU. Which means American data protection laws. Which means no data protection as far as I'm concerned. Could be wrong.

h4rm0ny

Re: For someone who lives in a big city

"Maybe he is not as clever as he thinks he is."

Nor as informed. He makes the argument that Win8 is "irrelevant" because people are more focused on BYOD. And then ignores that Win8 has significantly more features and support for BYOD than Win7 did. BYOD in the enterprise is one of the design goals of Win8.

US accused of hypocrisy over cyber warfare

h4rm0ny

"The idea is to protect one's water supply, power infrastructure, banking systems.....if that requires some "attacking" probes to forestall a major effort on the part of the "mis-understanders of Islam", then so be it."

I'm stumped as to how attacks on Iran's installations with things like Stuxnet, help protect US water supplies, etc. All they seem to do to me is stoke up motivation for revenge attacks and legitimize attacks on infrastructure.

Windows 8 'bad' analyst says Store is a weakness

h4rm0ny

"So Win8 SP1 is likely to have an 'upgrade' that stops this working, as an urgent security issue of course."

You're always making damning predictions like this. I ought to start collecting them. You have been reliably unreliably predicting doom for ages. When the Surface was announced, you pronounced it "vapourware". Then that it would be late if it ever did appear. Then you declared that it would hopelessly overheat. When I pointed out that it actually had this really nice all-round vent seam, you irritably posted how it wouldn't be waterproof. Seriously. Stop making predictions of failure just because you would like to see something fail.

Also, your little misinformation about having to re-purchase apps from Microsoft for each separate device -wrong.

Licensing Apps

You can install a purchased app on up to five devices and the app can be available to all user accounts on those devices. If you want to drop a device from the list and so the app can be put on a sixth PC, you can just de-select the previous device from the list for that app and you're done. I think five devices is reasonable and you certainly don't need to "buy apps several times".

h4rm0ny

Re: I still don't get it

"I am warming to Windows 8, but it seems to me that allowing desktop apps to run on a tablet will only discourage active software development on the metro side."

I think you're wrong and I'll explain why. I think it is necessary to allow Desktop apps to run on the tablet because at this stage, people still have a lot of unadapted programs they're attached to and the ability to run these is a selling point that MS have and Apple don't. So they want to keep it. But I also don't think it will discourage development of MUI apps because developers know that when they write their software as a MUI app, they're no longer able just to sell to Desktop PCs and the higher-end tablets. They're also able to sell to Windows Phone 8, lower-end tablets, Xbox - basically a much wider market. If a developer can code their program for MUI, then they probably will.

"but if you are developing a Windows game, wouldn't you try to support everyone who has Windows 8 installed, including the vast majority on non touch desktops and laptops?"

Yes. This I agree with. But the question is how hard is it to support both? I'm thinking of trying out some Windows-based programming for variety and it looks like there's a fair bit of thought gone into the APIs to make it possible to work with both without it being too horrible.

h4rm0ny

Re: What is the market that MS are aiming for ?

"but that in certain conditions ( Intel not ARM) allow you to also run MS Office."

You can run Office on WindowsRT. The number of people who will struggle because it doesn't do VBA is small. The preview version of Office will do 98% of what most people want and if you have the paid version of Office, this will probably fill in the rest, barring the VBA. Even the VBA part will eventually be worked around as it does support the new model of Office plugins that people are expected to use going forward (it's much nicer and more secure for a start).

"BUT THE MAJORITY of users do not care about running office on a tablet. I have various office applications on my android Tablet and Phone and honestly it is a PITA using them for this purpose, everything is very fiddly. OK with a keyboard and a mouse things become easy"

Most users did not care about having a tablet before tablets became easy and light with the iPad. If people can use Office on their devices then that frees them from carrying a tablet and a laptop. You contradict yourself first saying it's a PITA, then saying it becomes easy with keyboard and mouse. The Surface is a hybrid - it comes with the keyboard and mouse (trackpad) for the cost of a few extra millimetres on the tablet's thickness. Well worth it, imo.

"they are already seem happy with what they currently have."

In other words, 'people seem very happy with the 64KB of RAM.'

h4rm0ny

Re: Anyone else fearing the rise of the microtransaction computer?

"I'm half expecting to see in windows 9 only being able to install software that has been bought from the windoze store and approved by microsoft,"

If that happens, I'm going back to Linux for my main OS. You're not the only one who dislikes some of where this is going. But my main concern isn't the costs. It's censorship. MS have already stated that they will not sell any "adult" material in the store. Apple do the same. It's the smallest step in the world to go from that to political of social censorship.

No black helicopter. Censorship is happening now.

h4rm0ny

Re: Windows 8 Bad or author bad?

"I thought Gartner was more intelligent than this. Guess I better reevaluate what I read from these guys."

Probably best to have read the original article rather than the Reg's summary. The reason the author has pulled his post is probably because he saw the Reg linking to it. Especially after last time where they wrote a big howling piece about how Gartner had called Win8 "bad" when it was actually one Gartner employee's personal blog and the original rather long article generally liked Win8 but used the word "bad" in one place for one thing and if you don't believe me, the author has a piece up somewhere saying how angry they were that tech news sites took that one part of his piece out of context and tried to blow it up into some big deal.

h4rm0ny

You have it muddled. AMD have produced an Android interface that lets you run Android apps on Windows8. This *is* pretty cool, but I don't think we know yet whether it will include ARM devices (I suspect not). So it's not "Windows 8 users on any device" (probably).

That said, there are around twenty-thousand apps in the Windows store already because Win8 can use WP7 apps. And it's going to shoot up very fast. Also, the article writer is ridiculous to try and draw parralels between Firefox add ons and apps for Android, or the MS or Apple stores. It's a browser. They are OS's. Different roles, capabilities and needs, minor overlap. Stupid comparison.

Google shares dive as profits reported down 20%

h4rm0ny
Thumb Down

"Still a sinking ship. Time to put your wallet where your mouth is, shills."

Aside from being needlessly offensive and probably fairly groundless, it's also bone-headededly misunderstands what a "shill" is. The point of a shill is that they get paid by the company, not that they rush to give that company money. "Shill" is not another word for fan. It's an allegation of secret payment for what someone says.

h4rm0ny

We're in the midst of a massive and world-wide economic crisis. And Google took a slight hit on profits making only a couple of billion instead of couple and a half billion they made last time. And you conclude confidently that "the advertising business is going down the shitter". Congratulations - you make the short-term thinking panickers on Wall Street look like sober models of considered assessement by comparison. And that's not an easy feat!

Google will be fine.

Craig, Connery or ... Dalton? Vote now for the ultimate James Bond

h4rm0ny

Re: Dalton

Dalton is a fine actor with a good presence. But I don't really remember his Bond films very well. Roger Moore is my favourite. He once described his own acting style as "Left Eyebrow. Right Eyebrow".

Bless.

On-demand streamed music services compared

h4rm0ny

Re: I still find it strange...

"...that I'm paying Netflix £5.99 a month to stream hours high definition video to my PC and mobile, and paying Spotify a tenner to stream music to my PC and mobile, that are a fraction of the size "

Aside from it not being purely about bandwidth costs (movies and music are more complicated than that), most people with those subscriptions probably wont spend all day watching movies, but they will spend all day listening to music. Offline storage might impact that, but people will quite merrily download hundreds of songs, but they'll grab a movie or two a week to watch.

Microsoft Surface priced up for Blighty

h4rm0ny

Re: "Compares well with rivals"

I have a 24" monitor positioned about 30" away from me and it's 1920x1200 resolution (actually, I have two). 1366x768 at 10.6" That's 80 pixels per inch wide on the monitor and 128 pixels per inch wide on the tablet. Need to allow a little leeway because I'll be holding a tablet about half the distance to my face that I will a monitor, but if I sit that distance from my monitor it still looks fine. So I don't know if the screen on the SurfaceRT is good, bad or brilliant (there's a lot more to screen quality than resolution) but it's certainly possible that the screen is fine at 10.6" without being 720p.

There are also downsides to massive resolutions as well. The battery in the iPad3 is massively larger than the iPad2, but operating time is roughly the same. That's because the screen eats a lot more power. Apple could have had a really long battery life for the iPad3 but they chose screen resolution as their selling point instead (rightly so). Also, it takes considerably more processor power to run a much higher resolution. Take a mid-range graphics card and run a modern game at a low resolution - fine. Now whack it up to the highest resolution, say 2560x1440 and watch frame rates drop, or have to lower other settings to compensate. Low-power mobile devices don't normally have a lot of processing power to waste. What would you rather have for example? A fast refresh rate or a higher resolution? You want both of course which brings us back to the only realistic answer - there are a lot of factors in a screen and what you really need to do is try a screen out and see how it looks. But in answer to your question there's no reason why a 10" screen at lower than 720p can't be a very good screen.

h4rm0ny

"The rumours were £200 for the RT ones."

The stupid rumour from an "anonymous source" that had no support or evidence and was followed by a legion of people everywhere the rumour appeared saying that it was a stupid rumour. No-one who knew anything thought that anything other than wild and unfeasible speculation.

h4rm0ny

Re: Didnt Pre-ordered mine last night

"WinRT a full blown OS? hmm not so sure about that."

Okay. You posted it - so what definition of "full blown OS" excludes WinRT but includes things like Win8, OSX, Linux.

h4rm0ny

Re: Didnt Pre-ordered mine last night

"Its untested, untried, and effectivly the same price as the ipad. So they might as well get the ipad. "

For someone making an argument that the Surface will fail even if the cognoscenti like it, because it's not what the "person on the street likes", you show a weak grasp of how "the person on the street" thinks. They don't analyze past performance much or consider the company's history. They walk into a shop and play with it or watch a video or play with a friend's and say: "that's cool. I want that one."

The ones who analyze in excrutiating details, are us

Microsoft Surface: Designed to win, priced to fail

h4rm0ny

Re: Fandroid name

Fandroid is a derogatory term. But I don't think it's generally considered to mean any Android user. It just means fanatics who rail abuse at other OSs or those that like them. All groups have such people. It doesn't reflect most of the userbase.

h4rm0ny

Re: Business

"$499 w/o keyboard. $599 with. Seems straight forward to me."

Ah, you're just de-selecting the keyboard and then re-adding it and saying it's a £100 for the pink keyboard. It sounded like you were saying it was £100 more for colour. Standard cost of £479 with keyboard. £498 with coloured keyboard. If you remove the keyboard and just order the tablet part, then it's £399. But I don't imagine many people will do that. It turns it into a cheaper iPad a bit if you don't get the keyboard.

h4rm0ny

I think they've priced it just right.

The more I think about this, the more I realize that matching the iPad penny for penny, means there's no ambiguity about what factors we're assessing. It's a straight-up match between iPad and Surface to compare features and build. It's pretty much an out and out statement saying to the world: "we think we're better."

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