* Posts by Greg J Preece

2505 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Keep out of the Olympics' way, earn a haircut from TfL app

Greg J Preece

Erm, forgive my squirrelly ignorance, but surely a route is more than just the beginning and end points? Aren't those what you start with, and the route is the bit inbetween?

I just love how TfL's primary response to the Olympics screwing over the capital seems to be "just walk." They wrap it up in the usual help-us-out/save-the-planet/this-is-doing-you-a-favour bullshit, but at the end of the day all this massive ad campaign says to me is: "we really fucked up with transport for this massive event half of you don't want, so we're asking all the people that paid for our network to not use it."

PHP devs lob second patch at super-critical CGI bug

Greg J Preece

Cue 1000 server admins calling PHP a shit language whilst providing no superior alternative.

MP blasts 'ineffective' games regulation

Greg J Preece

Off to fire up the Unreal Development Kit and make a quick mod where you kill Keith Vaz, then dilute him in vast quantities of water as a homeopathic remedy for being a twat.

Star Trek's Wesley Crusher blasts Google+ landgrab

Greg J Preece

Re: Time to resurrect the Usenet group...



Greg J Preece

Re: Who?

Is there anything more painfully boring than someone commenting on an article to say "Never heard of them"? Thanks for your superb contribution to the debate. Perhaps, given that this site is fulla nerds, they'd be more interested in the opinion of another nerd than that of the latest chart rapper?

Greg J Preece

I follow Wil on FB and this is exactly why. In this case at least, he's absolutely right.

Britain prepares for government by iPad

Greg J Preece

"Politicos had been testing the Apple 'slab in the Commons since early 2011 with the idea being that the devices could save money on print costs."

Erm, why do laptops require you to print anything more than tablets do?

Facebook button triggers tidal wave of human organs

Greg J Preece

Re: Bloody hell ...

Reducing the time between donations might bloody help, too. Your body recovers from a blood donation within 4 - 6 weeks usually, so many countries limit it to 8 weeks between donations to be on the safe side. Here, we make it 12 weeks, which is far too long. No wonder you're short on blood supplies when a punter can only donate 4 pints a year!

Greg J Preece

Armchair activism put to good use for once. Kinda sad that any kind of altruism is far more effective if you give someone the option to tell everyone about it on their Facebook feed.

Ubuntu 12.04 LTS: Like it or not, this Linux grows on you

Greg J Preece

"Ubuntu's menu of the future"?

You mean that autocompleter they swiped straight out of KDE (right before they dropped support for KDE)?

Opera retires Unite, widgets in latest browser cut

Greg J Preece

5 downvotes already? U MAD, FANBOYS?

Greg J Preece

Heresy! Opera works everywhere, always, and better than anyone else. :-p

What's with the focus on the extensions API anyway? A year or two ago, wasn't the party line that Opera didn't *need* extensions because it was already perfect, extensions make Firefox bloated, blah blah yadda yadda?

Samsung DOUBLES profits on strong phone sales

Greg J Preece

Hoping Huawei do as well as predicted, as they're one of the companies to have promised Tizen phones later this year. Bring it on!

Linux Left 4 Dead port fuels Steam for Ubuntu talk

Greg J Preece

Re: Newell ... advocate of Linux ... dislike for Microsoft's Windows 8

"If so you'd have to have Linux and Windows versions of every single game, and that relies on the developers bothering to do so"

The Mac gaming market isn't a patch on the PC one, but they have support for it, and more games are being made dual-platform (or being ported to Mac if they prove to be successful). I'm in Windows at the minute so I can't check, but I seem to remember at least 30 of my approx 200 games working on Mac. It'll just take time to develop, and I think the Linux market are hungry for it to be honest, whether the purists whine about DRM or not.

"Linux users are stereotyped as not being overly fond of paying for software - whether this is accurate I'll let the Linux users answer, and would be interested to hear."

I believe that this is the exact opposite of the truth, to be honest. Linux users don't just pay for software - they willingly donate to it. Using my Humble Bundle example from further up the thread, they release all their games on all three platforms, with pay-what-you-like donations to charity, and Linux users have topped the donation scales every single time, followed by Mac users and lastly by Windows users. We'll definitely pay, but only for quality.

Greg J Preece

Wasn't code referring to a Linux port found in the beta of the Mac client or something? Seem to remember that. Anyway, with regard to Steam on Linux, three words:




OK, it's a smaller portion of the market, but percentage-wise Mac isn't exactly the majority, and Steam for Android appeared first! And while the major publishers might see all PC gamers, and especially Linux nerds, as freeloaders, the Humble Bundles have proven every single time that Linux nerds pay for quality software, and pay more. That, coupled with the huge increase in the size of the PC indie market (thanks in large part to AAA publisher hate and Steam love) makes me more optimistic that this time it'll actually happen.

Ted Nugent fined for failing to kill bear

Greg J Preece

Re: @Greg J Preece

Really? The guy pleaded guilty, accepted the fine and apologised. Compare that to other celebs, such as - oh, I dunno - Paris Hilton. The woman had a petition to stop her going to jail for repeated drunk driving offences, claiming that she should be immune because she brought excitement to otherwise mundane lives (I shit you not).

And please explain to me why a rich person should be fined more for the same offence than a less wealthy person. I'm getting rather tired of this recent notion that success = evil. "How dare you make money in exactly the way I'd love to?" The same crime requires the same punishment.*

*Between individuals. I don't believe, however, that companies should be punished on the same scale - see Google being fined $25k.

Greg J Preece

Re: Fina aside, not really a punishment is it

Surely an entire hunting season (or the latter half of one/first half of the next, etc) would be covered under "a year."

From my perspective, I might not agree with Nugent on a lot of things, but you've got to give the guy props for straight-up apologising for what he did and taking it on the chin. He didn't try to weasel out or blame anyone else, he just accepted responsibility and said sorry. Fair play.

Crytek: Schemes to strike second-hand games biz 'awesome'

Greg J Preece

Does anyone else think that Gabe Newell is sat somewhere cackling and rubbing his hands? Given that his is not only the largest online distribution system, but that it's one of the few with a concept of pricing...

I bought a dozen second hand games from the "please will someone take this stock" end of CeX's website the other day. Cost me practically nothing, but I can almost guarantee that I'm going to get into at least one franchise through this, and that will generate future purchases from me.

Unless, of course, you do something dickheaded like this.

'Asteroid mining company' makes classic hypegasm debut today

Greg J Preece

Re: Hollywoods already rubbing it's hands together

@Bill - Beat me to it. I was going to point out the irony of the guy who made Aliens founding Weyland-Yutani.

Look back in Ascii: Computing in the 1980s

Greg J Preece


Not seen the Agenda before, but it looks seriously nifty. Always wanted to try out a chordboard - they still exist as USB peripherals aimed at RSI sufferers. Want to see how fast I could get my typing speed up on one.

Happy 30th Birthday, Sinclair ZX Spectrum

Greg J Preece

Re: Happy birthday old pal

And me! First bit of programming I ever did, at a ridiculously young age, and all because the introductory programming manual had a wizard on the front cover, and a kaleidoscope program in the back...

My Speccy, Speccy+ (hard keyboard) and ZX81 are all still going strong, though I did lose my joystick interface. :-(

Megaupload case near collapse: report

Greg J Preece

Re: The New Justice[tm]

Thing is, no matter how much the software developers (whose point of view I do appreciate) complain about MegaUpload, it had legitimate uses, like every other file sharer on the net. When MU went dead, so did half the links in the KDE theming/widget system, as the hobbyists who made all that stuff used MU as a reliable, fast method of distributing it. Everything on the net that copies anything can be used for piracy - should we just shut the net down? Allowing attacks like those seen against MegaUpload set a precedent that basically any service can be taken down any time the music/record/software industry says so.

Which is bullshit.

Greg J Preece

Re: The New Justice[tm]

"if some german bloke didn't get rich off making it easy for people to copy for free what we've spent years working on"

Dotcom invented the file-copy command...?

Biologists create synthetic DNA capable of EVOLUTION

Greg J Preece

Man promptly replied "Fuck you then, I'm off to steal some from Saturn. We don't need your self-obsessed ass."

Greg J Preece

OK....that was completely irrelevant.

I wonder if the other Cameron (Kirk) will pay any attention to these findings...

Nokia loses $1.7bn in Q1, sales chief falls overboard

Greg J Preece

@MaXimaN - Re: N900 upgrade path

The Desire Z is not far off the age of the N900. (Did it get an S upgrade? Don't think so.) The Mini Pro got a refresh but it's too damn small. Plus, the reason I'm on an N900 is: I don't want Android!

Greg J Preece

Re: Anyone remember...

Pro-tip: people can tell you're a shill when you:

a) Post anonymously

b) Use the word "synergies".

Definitely a PR invasion on this thread. Sorry guys, this is El Reg. Not gonna wash. And this is coming from a guy who actually kinda likes Windows Phone. One of my phones is a Lumia 800, and holy damn is it fast. Just missing quite a few bits of software...

Greg J Preece

Re: N900 upgrade path

Can't agree. The N9 is a nice phone and I like MeeGo, but Nokia abandoned another OS at launch, and the N9 has no keyboard. Now, if I could get my hands on an N950, that would be ace, but I'm stuck on my N900 for now. Going to go SIM-only and wait to see what happens with Tizen.

Someone make a proper smartphone with a bloody keyboard. Please? Please??

Analyst: 'revolutionary, compelling' iPhone 5 out in October

Greg J Preece

"In any case, said Munster, the timing of the iPhone 5's launch doesn't matter: it'll so impress, fanboys and regular punters will snap it up."

Well just how the fucking fuck would you know? How does he know it'll have a "revolutionary" new design? How can he know one damned thing about a design he almost certainly hasn't seen?

Sony 3D PlayStation TV to hit UK at last

Greg J Preece

One of the few good applications of 3DTV, but 23" is just too small. The TV hanging on my wall is 40", and I used to have a 52". Make one that size and we'll talk.

Barclaycard slaps pay-by-bonk plasters on mobes

Greg J Preece

Re: Stealth Bonk

Stick it to the back of your hand and invent punch-to-pay?

Stick it to your grundies and do the bump? Bump bump bu-bu-bump aw yeah?

If they're in America already, I'm surprised someone hasn't had the balls to stick one to the side of his gun and scare the shit out of a few till operators with draw-to-pay, punk.

Oracle v Google could clear way for copyright on languages, APIs

Greg J Preece

"In recent years, a strangely zealous campaign against patent protection for software has been successfu"

Which planet have you been living on? "Recent years" seem to have been chock-full of patent trolling from where I'm sat. The campaign against it can't have been that successful.

Google faces WHOPPING FTC fine for Safari privacy gaffe

Greg J Preece

It's still further than our lot got in prosecuting them. It's been a while, but I'm pretty sure that the Computer Misuse Act 2000 makes their little wi-fi slurp completely illegal, and on the scale they did it, someone should get put away. Nnnnope, never gonna happen.

But then again, it didn't with Phorm either, did it?

Microsoft details Halo 4 release

Greg J Preece

Oh Christ, I had hoped this hugely overrated piece-of-shit series was dead and buried...

Google G-drive app leak sparks 5GB file vault riddle

Greg J Preece

No Linux support again, eh?

Assuming these rumours are true, I would expect better from Google of all people. Half the stuff they make is based on Linux, as is a massive chunk of their infrastructure. The Android SDK has an official Linux release, Android itself is Linux-based, as are Chromebooks, etc, etc, etc.

Make a chuffin' *nix client!

Microsoft to bake Windows 8 in three flavours

Greg J Preece

Re: Let's go:


Greg J Preece

Re: yep

"who ever knew that windows would be the star trek movies of software."

Only in this case, it's all the odd numbered ones that are any good.

Sony: UK ebook shop open for business

Greg J Preece

Re: amazon 3% VAT

....or reduce VAT where it's being horrendously overcharged? 15% for 18 months and then 20% for the rest of time? Yeah, thanks for that.

Greg J Preece

Re: Been waiting for it to appear

I also have the PRS-T1. The store isn't that great yet - too few books and too expensive - but it's the Reader PC software that really gets on my nerves. It's terrible, with a pretty piss-poor user interface, missing options all over the place, and it doesn't handle sync properly. It assumes that its copy is always right, not the reader's, and you can imagine how that goes.

My biggest irritation is that I was stupid enough to create some collections on the reader from the PC software, as that kind of massive multiselect thing is always easier on a desktop. Collections you create on the desktop are locked on the reader - why?? I then got a new laptop, installed the reader software, and it refuses to synchronise these collections back! So now I have collections on the reader that neither the device nor the PC can edit. Someone needs a slap for that.

In fairness, the one thing it does do really well is updating the device's firmware - that was absolutely painless, just a notification and one button to click. I'm just glad that I applied the Android hack to my T1 immediately after getting it, so I have Kindle installed. Some of my stuff comes from there, and the rest are independently bought ePubs/PDFs from elsewhere on the net, copied via the filesystem directly to the device's /media directory. If Sony want me to use their store instead, they're going to have to try a lot harder.

Apple finally deploys Mac Flashback Trojan terminator

Greg J Preece

Re: @Greg J Preece: facebook needs no java-plugin

The uploader wasn't just a box with "select file" - it allowed for multiple select, showed upload progress, preview and rotate, etc, etc. Was actually pretty neat.

More info: http://www.stevepoland.com/facebook-image-uploader-java-applet-replica-script/

Greg J Preece

Re: I understand Java and Javascript are totally different, but...

Last time I uploaded photos to Facebook from my computer and not my phone, that was Java. It is around, and it can look pretty enough that people assume it' not Java. ;-)

Greg J Preece

The Flash Approach

Backed yourself into a corner by preventing Oracle from updating their own kit? Been made to look like ineffectual tits for 6 weeks? What's the answer?

Disable it!

Yes, that's right, when properly maintaining something you demanded complete control over is too much effort, and backing down would hurt your pride, just disable the user's functionality! If they complain, why not write an open letter attacking the platform as buggy/slow/a threat to users. I'm sure your legions of slavering fans will agree with your every word, no matter how demented.

Greg J Preece

Re: Opera On-Demand Plugins setting

Good god, is there any article the Opera Squad won't invade with their gushing?

FBI track alleged Anon from unsanitised busty babe pic

Greg J Preece

Re: A few simple lines to save yourself from prison

My N900 auto-purges location information when it uploads photos to anywhere. No additional software required, it's built straight into the phone. Damn handy piece of kit.

So what's the worst movie NEVER made?

Greg J Preece

I really don't want to answer this. I don't want to give them ideas.

'Selling your citizens to foreigner is not acceptable!'

Greg J Preece

Re: > remember when a smartphone used to be all about capability?

I'm going to go with cynicism. ;-) Back when I started buying smartphones, they certainly weren't status/fashion symbols. Big, ugly silver bricks cluttered with keyboards and styluses, when everyone wanted smaller, thinner, more fashionable phones, ultimately culminating in the - *spit* - Razr.

They were not pretty to look at, twice the size of anything else, and had pretty piss-poor user interfaces, but they could do everything. The current set of "smartphones" (Android and iOS) took years to achieve pretty much the same level of functionality. Oooh, your smartphone can multitask now, can it? I must have fallen through a timewarp to ten years ago.

Greg J Preece

"This new, sleek look will be the most important reason that consumers decide to upgrade."

Says everything you need to know about the current smartphone market.... Does anyone remember when a smartphone used to be all about capability?

Most anticipated videogames of 2012 revealed

Greg J Preece

Re: isnt....

Do you care? It's a long time since the Aliens franchise made something new that wasn't shit/meh, TBH.

Greg J Preece

Re: No PC games then?

"In the most egregious cases the pirated version is more functional than the retail. I pirated Crysis 2 after I bought it; the cracked version fixes a game stopping save-game bug that Crytek won't fix as the game is 'out of support'."

Funny you should say that. I had to do the same with Far Cry on WinXP x64 a few years back. I'm also of the opinion that DRM and publisher hatred is what tried to kill PC gaming (sorry, but it's not dead). Piracy happened all through the 90s, but the PC was absolutely golden. Then DRM came along, nuked the second hand market completely (meaning fewer games on shelves and no more people willing to pay £40 a pop than previously), and the publishers wrote off all PC gamers as pirates.

But don't be a smug console gamer, because you lot are next. Already the 2nd-hand taxes are being collected, and with the next generation, the publishers will try to kill off the high street entirely, so they can lean you over the coals for £50 a game. And unlike Steam, PSN sales are few and far between, include very few titles, and don't have nearly the same level of discount. So, enjoy that when it hits.

And if I have to hear that "yearly upgrade" FUD one more time... My PC just entered its 7th year of life, and only now am I *thinking* of upgrading it. Next year.

Parents shocked by priestly PowerPoint pr0n

Greg J Preece

Re: Wow...

"As an atheist, why would you care what the church thinks at all?"

Because they're counting me amongst their numbers, and those numbers give them influence on world events which is almost always negative. I don't want to be counted as a Catholic, because I don't want Africans dying in my name, or altar boys being buggered for it. I left Catholicism long before I left Christianity, because I simply couldn't continue associating myself with the horror and corruption of the Vatican.

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