* Posts by Greg J Preece

2505 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Obama banks on NASA's big launcher

Greg J Preece

Typical Mail

I love how they put "NUCLEAR" in capitals, like it's "OMGZORG those crayzee Russians are gonna nuke space!" Can't wait for the "they'll fire them at us" or "they're gonna destroy the Earth!" comments from their readers.

Amazon Kindle International Edition

Greg J Preece


So it's got quite a few features less than the US edition, is missing several formats from its repertoire, has crippled web browsing, and the books are still ludicrously expensive (an e-book should not cost the same as a paperback, end of).

Riiight. No ta.

Apple seeks patent on reality

Greg J Preece

Have they actually developed anything?

Or can you patent "future stuff"? It astonishes me that the patent system allows you to think of something futuristic that may be cool, and patent the mere concept of it, without doing any real work whatsoever.

In which case I'm putting in a patent on the 40W phased plasma rifle.

Philip K. Dick's kid howls over Googlephone handle

Greg J Preece

You are correct, sir

It's where the Labyrinth came out, if you were badass enough to escape.

The Nexus is, of course, also the name of the other dimension Captain Kirk was transported to after his apparent "death" on the Enterprise B, whilst recalibrating the deflector dish. </sad>

"Nexus" has been used sooooo many times in sci-fi and fantasy that it's pointless trying to claim that you and you alone own it.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner set for first flight

Greg J Preece

250 people my arse

It'll have 250 seats for about ten minutes, then they'll cram an extra few hundred in for better margins.

Critics aim to sink Titanic ice cubes

Greg J Preece

Sick? Distasteful?

I shall buy some immediately. I do love winding up the thick-skinned. Come on, Titanic was a century ago. Even their children are dead. Plus, we regularly make fun of WW1, a far greater tragedy of that point in history (Blackadder Goes Forth?)

"How long will it be before this firm makes ice cubes of the Twin Towers to commemorate 9/11?"

You're on. Give me an afternoon.

Top cop's 'stop stopping snappers' memo: Too little too late?

Greg J Preece

Word count

Saying "middle class" every paragraph as if it were an insult of some kind marks you out as a bit of a dick. So, which end of the class war are you coming at this from, Che?

Googlephone facing 10m more Jobsian challengers?

Greg J Preece

Apple might have their brand

But Google have theirs. Even amongst the Joe Bloggs population Apple are often seen as a bit smug, whereas Google are just...well...Google. Do no evil and all that garbage.

Apple are well known for making stylish kit, but Google are equally well known for making a lot of bloody nice toys that work really well. Who provides the map app on the iPhone again?

I think if anyone has a chance of catching up with the iPhone (which, TBH, I still think is an overly fancy, overly expensive shiny toy for executives, not a smartphone), then Google are it.

Where is virtualisation taking you?

Greg J Preece

Generally for development

We've found that virtualisation works really well for development kit, testing/demo sites and the like. It's saved us the cost of additional servers because we can just fire up and tear down exactly what we need, when we need it, which in a flexible development environment is great.

For anything customer-facing (ie, production servers), we still do it old-school, simply because you tend to have fewer actual apps on that end (one app might be tested on a whole range of machines, but our hosted version only needs one), the user demands on them are far higher, and you are far less likely to want to mess with it.

Vigilantes R US: Private enterprise takes over

Greg J Preece

Couldn't help laughing

I got trolled by the comment bot! :-D

Greg J Preece

Hey, I never said it was good

I loathe the site and want to set fire to it. Just pointing out that you can get street names - which IMO is even worse.

Greg J Preece

What a load of tosh

"From what we hear across the pond, crime rates (particularly rates of violent crime) in urban and semi-urban areas of Britain are achieving truly impressive levels of frequency amongst a population largely barred from any effective defense of their homes and persons against such depredations - routinely surpassing efforts of bad actors on our shores (at least those not currently elected to Congress) in daring, brutality, and frequency."

Sunshine, that is complete bollocks. Total, complete, utter, mindless bollocks. The population of both our countries may enjoy wallowing in fear and waxing hysterical about the constantly accelerating downfall of society, but any logical analysis or - God forbid, evidence - will probably lead you to far different conclusions. Might I suggest that:

a) Fox News is not a reliable source of non-sensationalism, and that making other countries sound shittier than the US is a national pasttime.

b) Some crime rates over here pale into insignificance next to your own.

I was going to launch into a much larger rant against your cascade of uninformed speculation and smug pronouncements from on high, but I've better things to do, and Ms. Bee would never have published the outcome.

Greg J Preece

Not so

Click in to a given crim and it gives their street name.

Greg J Preece

As far as I'm concerned

"You have the right to know about criminals living and operating in your area, and that through awareness, you can improve the safety of your family".

As far as I'm concerned, no you bloody well don't. The concept of rehabilitation has gone right out the window these days. If someone is no longer in jail, then they've served their punishment, end of, no questions, shut your face. It's a fundamental principle of our justice system, surely? I'll build my own bloody opinions of my neighbours, thanks - I don't need a bunch of Mail-reading fearmongers telling me who to be afraid of today.

As for me, my own history is thankfully squeaky clean (I was on the athletics team in high school, so a clean pair of heels was all you'd see. ;-) ).

Chumby internet-connected alarm clock

Greg J Preece

Gene is not wrong

When I visited other states, there seemed a much more even spread, but Florida? Man, that's chock full of fatties. And not UK-style fat people, where you eat a bit much but you can still get shirts that aren't mail-order. I mean FAT. So fat you need two seats on the bus. So fat people mistake you for furniture. One memory that always sticks with me was queueing up for a show at Disney World (shut your pie hole), and watching three generations of a family, including the kids who looked about 12, skipping the queue and coming up the disabled ramp, all in mobility scooters because they were simply too fat to walk around the park unassisted. That's when it went from amusing to shocking.

When queried by one of the other tourists (with a fantastically stereotypical German accent) as to why being fat got you to the front of the queue, a park rep responded that she "didn't want to leave them out in the sun too long." What, in case one of them turned crispy brown and was eaten by the rest of the family?

I think that might just be endemic to the tourist areas though. Every other restaurant is an all-you-can-eat, and they operate that way 24x7 - breakfast, lunch and dinner. I mean, why wouldn't you? If I lived there, rather than dropping in for two weeks, you can bet your ass that mine would be sofa-sized.

Video surfaces of alleged Apple tablet

Greg J Preece

Another vote for fake

What kind of online store is that? Made with extra zoominess, instantaneous load times and pointless motion effects? Or is that supposed to be a new, extra-swishy version of their downloadable planner that doesn't have any load times at all? I call horseshit on that one.

Plus, it's massive. How the hell would you carry that around?

Opera on Google Chrome OS: what me worry?

Greg J Preece

Google's operating system?

"You can't install another local browser on a Chrome OS machine without, well, rewriting Google's operating system."

Grrrr....Google's operating system? You mean the copy of Debian/Ubuntu/whatever they've installed their browser on? Man, that'll take all of 20 seconds...

WebGL draft spec brings 3D interweb future one step closer

Greg J Preece

It turned into X3D, but anyway...

VRML wasn't hardware accelerated, and even if it had been GFX cards weren't up to scratch. It needed a plugin to work, and back then everyone was on dialup, so it took an age and a half to load.

Similar 3D plugins and effects that came in later via Flash proved much more popular. With almost everyone on broadband, much more powerful PCs, and browser makers building support straight in, I think we're in a much better position to make it work.

Not in IE though. Those morons still haven't even given us SVG support.

Steel-woven wallet pledges to keep RFID credit cards safe

Greg J Preece

See, they're much nicer

Much, much nicer. And cheaper, too. And they hold more (between debit, credit, ID, security and membership cards, I've got a shitload of these things).

What I love is that the RFID industry has said "Shit, our technology has this one, tiny, small, insignificant GIANT HUGE SECURITY HOLE, but let's not fix it. Let's sell people new wallets instead."

Apple preps adaptable gadget adapter

Greg J Preece

I'm starting to see similar

My phone, BT headphones and several other devices now all charge (or trickle charge) from USB. If someone could just convince Cowon that they don't need to have stupid proprietary connectors on their otherwise excellent devices, I'd only have to carry one cable for anything, ever!

Parcelforce fails to deliver for Windows 7 lovers

Greg J Preece

Going out of business?

There's a who in the where now?


If DHL in the UK are bust, someone might want to tell the guy who delivered me a parcel yesterday in a large yellow van.

AMD ATI Radeon HD 5970 two-GPU graphics card

Greg J Preece


...if you're connecting just one monitor via DP you can use a passive adaptor, according to ATI's tech sheet on the matter. Should make things cheaper.

As for the heating point, I agree, and that's why I rarely buy stock ATI cards. There's always a third party out there with a superior cooling rig for not a hell of a lot more.

Greg J Preece

It's simple

I could easily have had as many monitors as I wanted, but at the time I built the machine I wanted tri-screen gaming, which needs (or needed) Windows to recognise all three monitors as if they were one. And if you want to run SLI, you can only output from one card. So I hooked two SLI'd GTX cards into a Triplehead2Go, which meant the three screens identified to Windows as one huge 3840x1024 monitor. Job done. Played Half Life 2 at 3840x1024. Was very much fun.

Greg J Preece

Though I would like to add

Having peripheral vision in games isn't always an advantage.... Think F.E.A.R., in surround sound, at 2am...

Greg J Preece

Pricey, but for me there is an advantage

Ever since I built this machine back years ago when it was running two nVidia 7900GTXs (and heating my room at the same time) I've had a Matrox Triplehead2Go monitor splitter to give me three-screen gaming (and loads of screen space for programming IDEs). Not every game ran well with it - in fact, while a lot of games list the resolution as available in the options screen, actually selecting it completely knackers the perspective and makes the game unplayable. Escape From Butcher Bay is a good example.

With Eyefinity, I could dump my extortionately-priced and annoyingly analogue first-generation external splitter box on eBay, buy a couple of adaptors for my existing monitors, and use the money to soup the machine up even further. Say, with a huge, expensive, completely over the top graphics card? Hell yeah...

Definitely something I'll be looking into. So long as it doesn't require the same number of wires and fecking about as my existing setup - and considering this thing already has 3 output connectors without any external boxes at all, that's quite likely - I would be very interested.

LHC pulverises previous record: 2.36 TeV surprise collision!

Greg J Preece

Rise and shine, Missster Freeman

That's DOCTOR Freeman to you, sonny jim.

Durham police demonstrate DNA will stuff you

Greg J Preece

Let's test this

Get some, go to Durham, get arrested, have infinite amounts of fun making them look as big a bunch of idiots as possible. I'm sure El Reg would be only too glad to help out with the publicity on that case.

I'm free this weekend. ;-)

2009's Top Personal Media Players

Greg J Preece

Cowon S9?

I seem to remember you calling it the "first real iPod touch killer"...


Best audio quality going, hands down, and a higher review score than the runners up. What gives?

First Android 2.0 smartphone arrives in UK

Greg J Preece

Well, multitouch for one

I know there are certain features being enabled over here that aren't present in the American software, despite the device being essentially the same. If that's the case, then the installed ROM must be different.

Greg J Preece

Was excited about this

Until I read some of the reviews coming out of the US. :-( Apparently the software is going to be quite different over here, so hopefully that will improve things. I've been really hankering for an Android phone, but at the minute the sheer beef of the N900 is calling to me.

Nokia N900 Linux smartphone

Greg J Preece

So what you're saying...

...is that it's shit because it's too thick?

As O'Briain would say, get in the sack! So long as it does what I want it to do, and it's smaller than my current HTC Athena, I couldn't give two flying monkey faeces whether or not it's slim and sexy.

Besides, a lot of top end devices are apparently that expensive on PAYG these days. No-one except iPhone users are stupid enough to pay the quoted price, though.

The return of the Psion-sized PC

Greg J Preece

Interface problems

That interface with those controls? That's going to be a disaster and you know it.

Fanboi site squeaks on crocked iMacs

Greg J Preece

Oh dear....

Fishing for fanbois is *really* easy.

Oh, and 280 dead Macs out of a specific model is a bit more significant than 280 products out of everything they sell, which was never the claim. Muppet.

Internet and journos fertilise scrotum-ripping drug panic

Greg J Preece

Even here?

What, even this renowned red-topped institution? Say it isn't so, El Reg!

Splinter Cell hack smells more like publicity stunt

Greg J Preece

Different Departments?

I doubt Ubisoft's game programmers and web admins are the same people...

BOFH: Made of win

Greg J Preece

Like it!

Love the line about the wheel. I shall have to steal it and use it in situations that do not involve anyone named Travaglia.

Kent Police exceeded powers in too-tall photographer case

Greg J Preece

Daft thing to say

Last time I checked, your average IT worker wasn't employed to be socially responsible, or to uphold a certain set of moral standards as an example to the public, and didn't have the power to affect/arrest those around him on the street for no apparent reason...

Freesat to get BBC iPlayer on 7 December

Greg J Preece

Awesome, now fix the box

Network settings are still majorly b0rked on my Foxsat HD (very common box) and I can't find an upgrade for the firmware to fix it. So that'll be useful then.

Adaptec sacks sales chief, boots CEO from board

Greg J Preece

Hope they sort themselves out

Adaptec have always made excellent kit in my experience (the RAID adaptors in my servers being just one example). Hope the company sorts itself outl Would hate to see them go down the pan.

iPhone worm hjacks ING customers

Greg J Preece

Re: Anti-worm

Hey, that actually sounds like a bloody good idea. I'll get right on it. ;-)

Google Chrome OS - do we want another monoculture?

Greg J Preece


"The hardware support is limited, but the reasons for that should be clear: it's a Linux OS and can't install extra drivers."

Woah woah woah, hang on a minute.....what?

Freeview HD - your questions answered

Greg J Preece

@Paulo - Freesat

I've had Freesat for a year. It has one major advantage and one major disadvantage. The advantage is that satellite transmissions have gobs and gobs of bandwidth available, and DVB-S2, so they don't need to multilate the picture as much. Even on my currently still-SD TV (saving up for one of those Samsung LED jobbies, oh yes), the picture is impeccable, with no visible compression artefacts at all on most channels. Friends who come round are always astonished by how clear the signal is compared to their own Freeview boxes, and nipping round to my neighbours for a gander at his HD-ready setup shows that HD channels look equally excellent.

The disadvantage is that you don't get the same channel range, and a large chunk of the EPG is comprised of Sky cast-offs. For example, I have no Dave, or Sky Three - those are only available with subscription.

Why Microsoft's IE 9 will frustrate standards fans

Greg J Preece

When expectations are low, improvement is easy

"IE 9's score already beats IE 8 on Acid3"

Well that's hardly difficult. IE8 on Win7 here barely struggles to 20/100.

Come on, Microsoft, just give us SVG. Please? Pretty please? We've been wanting to use that since IE 4, for Christ's sake.

Google open sources flash-happy Chrome OS

Greg J Preece

I already have a more advanced system

No, seriously, check this out:

Step 1: Install Ubuntu

Step 2: Install Chrome


Windows Phones get to play Opera too

Greg J Preece

Oooh, new beta

The old one is pretty nice on my WM phone, think that's 9.7 beta. Have they decided not to finish that version and gone straight to 10?

Going to download it now. Want to see if they've got rid of the annoying slowdown bug in the Google search bar. If they have, that will be mint - Opera 8 blew goats, Opera 9 was a massive improvement with a couple of bugs, hopefully Opera 10 will be what I've been waiting for.

Kingston SSD Now V 40GB boot drive

Greg J Preece

Brilliant for SMB business machines

I would wager that not a single one of our work laptops (bar mine) comes close to having 40GB of kit on it. These would be a great replacement to crappy old 5400rpm HDDs at not a massive cost. If any laptops suffer a HDD failure now I will be recommending one of these as a replacement.

Greg J Preece

Missed a bit

I meant to finish that last comment with "especially as half of them are running Vista for some reason."

Swedish cyborg gets haptic hand

Greg J Preece

That's absolutely brilliant

Nothing more needs saying really. Great achievement.

World's first iPhone worm Rickrolls angry fanbois

Greg J Preece


"This is NOT an iphone worm and it's incorrect and inflammatory to claim that. It's a work targeting the jailbreaks, nothing more"

Oooh, a touchy Mactard there.

It's a program that targets the jailbreaks on which phone?

Mozilla aborted IE in Firefox clothing

Greg J Preece




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