Re: The segmentation model
Because that was a fairly fundamental market expectation at that time?
How quickly we've forgotten. In the mid-2000s I tried to use a Motorola F3 for a while which, in theory at least, had a two week standby time.
278 posts • joined 11 Jun 2009
Because that was a fairly fundamental market expectation at that time?
How quickly we've forgotten. In the mid-2000s I tried to use a Motorola F3 for a while which, in theory at least, had a two week standby time.
Home taping is killing music, remember.
How about fixing Windows 10 search, Hyper-V desktop scaling and about a million other things that need doing instead of pissing about with stuff like this, eh?
Time crystals indeed...
That's what they said about DisplayPort. And HDMI. etc.
I agree that it's probably a step in the right direction, but considering we're only just now getting rid of VGA after nearly 30 years, how long until the current mish-mash is churned out of existence and how many other 'better' standards will come along in the meantime?
Ahh, *another* interconnection standard. Great, just what we need.
Here's how my Saturday afternoon went. On Friday I got given a new docking station and laptop for WFH larks.
Existing PC has VGA and DP
Existing monitor has VGA & DVI, connected by VGA.
New docking station has DP
New monitor has DP(2), miniDP(1) and HDMI(2), came with DP-miniDP cable, so good for one device.
Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to get both PC and docking station hooked up to the new monitor by procuring a suitable cable on Saturday afternoon in the affluent home counties.
"OK, let's do this" I thought.
First port of call; Tesco. Nope. (long shot I know)
Argos? Nope. (again, long shot)
Screwfix? Nope. (don't laugh, they do HDMI stuff nowadays and are handy)
Maplin? Hmmm, none within easy reach any more, but as it turns out their website says they only have miniDP-HDMI which wouldn't get me going without a less-than-ideal adaptor.
OK then, CurrysPCWorld (as we must now call it) will surely have one. Cue 10 minute drive.
Quick scan showed they didn't seem to have one hanging up so I asked a CPCW bod.
Me: "Hi, do you have any sort of DisplayPort cables? Not really bothered which flavour, just about any kind should do."
CPCW bod: "Is it VGA or HDMI?"
Me: "No, DisplayPort. It's a different connector."
CPCW bod: "Oh. I don't know much about these things. I'll go and get someone who does."
3 minutes later...
CPCW bod 2: "Hi, how can I help?"
Me: "Do you have any sort of DisplayPort cables? Not really bothered which flavour, just about any kind should do."
CPCW bod 2: "Is it for a Mac?"
Me: "No, PC"
CPCW bod 2: "DisplayPort is Mac only"
Me: "No, it's not. I definitely have a need to join a Lenovo docking station to a Dell monitor and neither are Macs yet both have DisplayPort"
CPCW bod 2: "Is it like this?" *points to HDMI cable*
Me, sighing: "No, it's DisplayPort"
CPCW bod 2: "They're Mac only though"
Me: "Err no, they're not" *scanning nearby PCs* "Look, here's a PC on your shelf with DisplayPort"
*CPCW bod2 whips out iPhone to use as torch to inspect the port*
CPCW bod 2: "Oh yeah. We only have cables for Macs though"
Me: "OK, can you show me those then?"
CPCW bod 2 *shows me various dongles and adaptors "for Mac" (i.e. white), but no cables*
Me: "So, no cables then. Thanks for your time"
I can only imagine how introducing yet another connection type into this unholy mess will "improve" matters, stores are already struggling to support the numerous combinations of source and sink ports.
VGA was ubiquitous to the point that I could realistically expect Tesco to have a cable in emergencies. The industry, through lack of planning, greed and hubris, has managed to screw this state of affairs up royally.
And the cable? I eventually got one delivered on Sunday from Amazon for a few quid. Take that, high street. If I'd done that straight away instead of pissing about I could have gotten it same day. *sigh*
I know Excel/Microsoft is the boogeyman and we are all to pillory at every opportunity, but...
"Help! This software I'm using, which I think I'm competent in but in reality am duped by its omnipresence and apparent user-friendliness, is doing stuff that I don't understand and now everything is broken!"
With any other piece of software we'd be pointing and laughing at the user, but for some reason this is Excel's fault?
Assuming it's being used at some level for number-based statistical or analytical needs i.e. what someone might reasonably expect to use a spreadsheet for* then not knowing how to use the product is hardly a defence, Neither is Microsoft really to blame for creating a product that has such a low bar to entry yet contains powerful features and complex behaviour that you need to understand to use the product effectively.
If the academics were complaining that they couldn't couldn't get their email clients or printers working properly would that be the software's fault too?
* Given the user cohort I really hope we're not in the realms of PowerPoint-for-posters, Excel-for-printed-forms here
Another 'wtf are Maplin thinking' price moan.
A few months ago I urgently needed a 64GB USB3 drive. There was a Sainsbury's, Currys, Maplin and Argos nearby. The availability/price was something like this:
Sainsbury's only had 32GB USB2 at about £15
Currys had one for £28
Maplin had one for £80 (!)
Argos had one for £15
Gues where I bought?
The chap in Maplin seemed to have no idea his stuff was so overpriced.
Dude, journalism is HARD.
Aww, on an awful day just more sad news.
Rest easy, man.
$60 a user?!
Looking forward to the $22B writedown in 2020.
Nice work, Satya.
Says it all.
How many sites? How much abandoned but still used code? How...daft?
Plumbum album galerum, multa?
I'll gladly keep funnelling money towards Cupertino if it means Car Play becomes the de facto standard for car integration. This, not the fabled 10ft living room interface, is the final frontier for Apple. In-car systems are almost universally awful, pretty much the way smartphones were pre-2007, and the whole thing is crying out for "disruption".
Even the v1 implementation on my wife's VW shows the potential, it's far better than the satnav that could be specced with the car (something like £700!) and requires no updates etc.
I've no doubt the Android Auto is also good in the usual Android fashion, but the iOS UI is much more refined and consistent and works extremely well on a 6-7" touchscreen - quelle surprise.
The sooner the screen in the car becomes a dumb display for my phone the better for all concerned.
"Completely useless in a professional setting, like a school."
You've obviously never seen the way my kids' school uses technology. Professional is about the last adjective I'd use.
"I also noted that this information goes back 40 years, would all this information have been electronic 40 years ago?"
Having worked on many very large backscan conversions for financial clients (jobs with resultant repositories in the 10s of TB), it's very possible that any old paper, fiche or film files would have been converted at some point in the past and form a fair chunk of this 2.6TB.
Discussion of the intricacies of bulk conversion of archive files is a great hit at parties btw
In other news, the Institute of Pizza Delivery Operatives have today called for mopeds powered by water that can travel at 10,000mph to be standard across the industry by 2030, citing 'lack of ambition' from moped manufacturers as a negative growth driver in the Italian convenience food distribution verticals.
Well, it's as relevant as anything the IoD have said here.
The number of good reasons for PCI-DSS to exist is eclipsed only by the number of project non-compliance/exception sign-offs about it.
Yup, seen people get tripped up by this one before.
Lack of knowledge about PDF layers and objects even gets some in the document processing industry who should really know better.
All our redaction is done on a raster version of the page and output as a single image in the final PDF, regardless of source.
Don't get me wrong, from the *user's* point of view Mint worked pretty much perfectly, it was just the poor s̶y̶s̶a̶d̶m̶i̶n̶ dad that struggled. From his perspective things worked pretty much the same as the PC at school, or the other PCs in the house, I tried to make sure of that. He could browse, game (within reason), create, save and print files as he needed to, and most of the network resources were accessible too.
The problems I had stemmed from being unable to sudo properly, I kept running into credential problems where the UI actions or commands should have worked, but never seemed to have the correct permissions. I tried to use root to fix those and seemed to make things worse, at one point I had no usable admin account and I seemed to be locked out of the UI tools to fix things. That led me down a rabbit hole to messing about with GRUB, of which I know very little. I did manage to get it back up and running to some degree, but installing packages always seems to trip things up. I've given up trying to make it work as I think it should now.
p.s. I tried all the common Linux screencap apps (when I could!) and unfortunately none are even close to FRAPS in terms of ease of use or performance.
Getting Minecraft & FRAPS running on a Chromebook might be a challenge ;)
Oh, I don't doubt that Mint was working properly, it's just the cack-handed manner in which I set it up that probably caused the bulk of the problems, the kind of stuff you're not asked to consider with a Win install. None of the issues were related to hardware problems, only security, elevation and stuff associated with making things work, so I've no reason to suspect the underlying hardware.
But the fact that a seasoned and tech-savvy person like me can make a pig's ear of just installing the OS from a relative standing start speaks volumes.
I also don't doubt that much or all of what is wrong could be fixed by a Linux expert in 30 minutes, and if I had similar issues on a Windows box then I'd probably be able to snap it into shape pretty quickly too, but that learning curve and the returns thing kicks in again.
If I may be permitted to park my contrarian bus on the Mint love-in car park for a second...
I'm exactly the kind of person that Linux on the desktop needs to win over if it is ever to be more than a niche past-time for the already-converted.
I've a solid 20+ years of Windows experience, from WFW and NT 3.5 to Windows 10 and Server 2012, have a fair understanding of what goes on under the hood in terms of hardware, software and networking, and am _very_ aware of the shortcomings of Microsoft products.
I've dabbled with live CDs and test installs of Fedora, Ubuntu and others over the years but always retreated to the safety of Windows for any machines I use on a permanent basis. There was always too much to learn and too little time, and the benefits in investing the time would not be realised as most of the software I use often have no realistic equivalent in GNU-land.
When I was donated an old but perfectly serviceable Dell desktop for my son to use a couple of years ago I thought that instead of jumping through the hoops to get whatever version of Vista was originally on it reinstated I'd just go for Linux. I reasoned that most of what my son would use it for (web, Minecraft and office applications) would work just fine without Windows.
So after digging about for a suitably newbie distro I installed Mint and although I don't think I had to jump through any fewer hoops than I would have done with resurrecting Vista on it (which was a surprise), it in the main it has performed well enough under the circumstances.
But it definitely hasn't been plain sailing and has required more than one arcane GRUB intervention on my part, various bits of the UI have stopped working at random and things have never been 100% in terms of getting security/elevation and package installation/update to work properly.
I'm prepared to accept that it was my inexperience that may have caused some of the long-standing package/elevation issues (although that's a problem right there) and that I may make a better job of understanding things a second time around, but the fact is that if a seasoned user like me, albeit coming from a different OS background, struggles with the most user-friendly version of Linux out there (and it was a struggle at points), what chance my wife managing this in my absence? Or my 72yo mum?
As it is I'm just about to flatten it and install Windows again and it will join the other four Win machines on my home network. The eventual push to do this? The lack of a viable FRAPS alternative, which is pretty much all a game- and YouTube-obsessed boy cares about.
I seem to have been saying this for 20-odd years, but maybe one day there will be a Linux OS that I can recommend to a wider audience, but I'm not holding my breath.
Scum of the earth = Content delivery network?
Tinfoil hats are over that way, buddy.
Probably what you would term lapsed PC enthusiast here and I have absolutely no idea what AMD's line-up or product hierarchy is nowadays.
Intel? Sure, I get the Celeron/Pentium/i3/i5/i7 progression and even the nuances of the HT/VT/turbo/cores/cache differentiation, but AMD?
Where's the consistent branding? Where's the killer price points that they can tackle Intel on, no quarter given?
Chucking a few extra cores in and/or some headline clock speeds doesn't compete when you're lumbered with a confusing nomenclature and up against the might of Intel's marketing. Lingering doubts over power consumption and per-core performance don't help.
Similar to many, my first and abiding memory of the Vulcan was in the 1980s, queuing to get into Leuchars when one took off directly over my dad's Cortina, only about 350m from the end of the runway according to Google Maps. All the superlatives, as many in this thread can confirm.
Because of such memories I wanted to see it fly at least once more and managed to time a trip back from Milton Keynes on Sunday to be able to stop off near RAF Halton to see it fly in low, loop round the airfield then shoot off towards Hendon. Shame it wasn't doing much more as the howl was only briefly evident as it set off again, but it was still amazing to see in the sky, even more so since the retirement of Concorde and the effective disappearance of such shapes from our skies.
In the dim and distant past I was the sole retail/distribution technical support for a high-end audio manufacturer. It was amazing the number of times a disgruntled dealer or distie would ring up and complain that their customer, who had just spent £50k on a system, was having weird control issues and/or intemittent hums and pops in the audio, and occasionally dealing out the kind of shocks described in the article.
Over time it became standard to ask them to confirm how the location was earthed as inevitably it was something similar where there was no local earth in place.
As the systems we sold frequently involved multi-room audio distribution in mansion-type accommodation, you can imagine that the potential for potential was quite significant.
Regardless of the clear requirement in the manuals for all our powered components to be properly earthed, it seems that various bits of the US, Spain, much of Scandinavia etc. aren't fond of earthing their circuits.
Strange that there was reluctance to chuck £300 at a spark to fit a ground rod or two was an issue when the customer might just have spent £12k on a CD player.
"0x2020 will be the year of the Linux desktop"
Fixed that for you. No charge :)
One of our clients, a finance house, starts theirs on Monday.
I've had good and bad experiences with most brands over the last 20 years or so, but I found this interesting breakdown of some real-world stats on HDD reliability. Shows a marked difference between Seagate and WD, and the ex-IBM, ex-Hitachi HGST drives.
Based on that I know where my money would be going. Spinning rust will be around for a bit yet.
So glad I put mine in for FOC on the spot replacement for this issue, 2 weeks inside the 1 year warranty.
Chap barely looked at it, seemed to have seen quite a few before and that was in October 2013.
Yeah, but rendered at a super-realistic 1m resolution unfortunately.
After watching the hybrid Toyotas, Audis and Porsches batter round Silverstone for 5-and-a-bit hours on Sunday there is little doubt these technologies are maturing fast and we'll see more of them on the road before long.
The sound of the Audis particularly was something else. Not in the usual 'screaming/rorty' way (there were plenty of 458s and Astons for that), but on the over-run there was but a serene (compared with said Astons!) but distinctly mechanical noise from them as the Williams system scooped up as much energy as it could as the car decelerated into the turn.
In that sense it's good to see some serious money being piled into them, but the cynic in me says the boat will sail without many of these UK innovators on board and it'll be the usual story of multi-billion dollar industries being created elsewhere on the back of this clever but ulimately transitional work.
I'd love to be proved wrong though.
Commodity phone is commodity.
Like me, you seem remarkably unconcerned with 'things happening in a public place about which which you can have no expectation of control or oversight'.
Thanks goodness some people remain unencumbered with stuff like a 'living a life' to find the time to get worked up about such things and complain about them on our behalf.
95 was certainly usable (and a revelation after 3.11WFW) but only OSR2 cemented its position.
But apart from that minor point, Mr D is spot on :)
Like many of Vodafone’s victims, sorry *customers*, I’m duty bound to comment on any Vodafone story to try and prevent as many of my fellow humans as I can from being snared by its gaping, apostrophe-shaped maw.
Friends, this is a beast that offers precious little in the way of connectivity, and even when a decent signal is conferred by your device, you must throw a six to see if that 4 bars of 3G actually translates into any significant throughput. Often it is but a cruel illusion and your fate is to stare at a faltering progress bar, awaiting the inevitable timeout.
As a metaphor for the whole Vodafone experience this is strangely apt.
I recently stood in a Vodafone shop and demonstrated this remarkable phenomenon to one of the disinterested staff. Their comments of “Well, what do you expect?” and “Yeah, it’s like that sometimes” should tell you all you need to know about their contempt for us, their unsuspecting prey. After the terrible kicking they’ve received since the economic dog days of 2007, the prospect of more of these shrines to incompetence and indifference is probably the last thing our beleaguered high streets need.
Like many, I was initially seduced by an excellent deal on a handset, but to my eternal shame my error was compounded by my intransigence and subsequent failure to avoid taking the dangled bait of an even more generous retention deal on one of Mr. Jobs’ portable telephones a couple of years later. Never underestimate the power of The Shiny.
Now 18 months into this two year purgatory, I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel and am looking forward to the day when I can emerge, blinking and bewildered, from the belly of the bloated crimson creature, free to tart myself about the networks as I see fit.
Until then I can only repeat; friends don’t let friends Vodafone.
p.s. If after 30-odd years of consistent and pervasive branding, you still think the company is called ‘Vodaphone’ then you deserve everything you get. Sorry.
...and this was one one of them. Well done.
Relax, friend, I'm sure it wasn't you who failed to do your job properly.
Here's how these things work:
- Corporate wants workers to have flexibility to work from home, airport lounges etc. to save money on head office floorspace and facilities, so rolls out VPN solution but expects staff to provide home connection (partially subsidised).
- VPN solution works most of the time, but when it doesn't the users have to phone a centralised support number.
- In an ideal world, this support function would provide credible suggestions of what to do to try and resolve the issue, including working with the user to identify any potential issues in the privately-provided but corporately-sponsored home broadband equipment.
- In this case they failed to do that, a metaphorical shrug of the shoulders was all that was given.
However, this doesn't help the user and certainly doesn't magically teleport them 20 miles to head office and make a desk and ethernet connection appear out of nowhere to allow them to start working again.
This is not some resource-starved SME either, we're talking about an oil major here.
From memory it was working fine for ages then some patch or upgrade was applied and it stopped working.
Considering the nature of the problem (related to a hardware/software change), the size of the user base (>10 thousand) and the equipment used (a fairly common Linksys of the time), it's unlikely that no-one else had ever come across a similar issue, so this points to a) a lack of knowledge sharing and/or b) incompetence/inexperience on the part of the support staff.
It certainly isn't the time to start the 'user blaming' that is so prevalent in large swathes of desktop support. You seem to hold your discipline in such high regard, putting it beyond criticism, but it's not the view shared many of us stupid and inconvenient people on the end of the phone.
I've known many great women and men in support - dedicated, knowledgable and friendly people - but sadly for each of them there's been about three petty, unhelpful, incompetent jobsworths.
Anyway, all water under the bridge now and precious little to do with the subject at hand.
I hereby apologise for calling your personal commitment to excelling in all areas of support into question and wish all those suffering from lack of connectivity due to the Homehub issue a speedy resolution :)
p.s. And thanks for the "FUCK YOU", I'll file it along with all the other online insults I've received over the years. I'm hoping to one day fashion them into a monument to my own ignorance and fallibility, to be titled 'My Ad Hominem Phenomenon', the base of which will feature a downvote appliqué.
I've had problems in the past with stingy default MTU settings in home routers. 1492 seemingly isn't enough for some VPN implementations and I've had to bump it up to maximum. Naturally, corporate IS support were hopeless and it was trial and error that eventually found the problem.
Until then I had a furious wife who was blaming (correctly, for once!) "our crappy network". Funny, I don't recall ever taking on the role of network admin and desktop support, nor have I ever been paid for any work...
In any case, I doubt it's as simple a solution here, but stranger things have happened (e.g. MTU shown in UI isn't saved/doesn't reflect applied internal value).
Less than three hours ago I stood outside Vodafone's Aylesbury store to run a speed test. My phone (18 month-old iPhone 5) had 4-5 blobs of 3G on the signal strength meter.
Result? 307ms ping, 0.02mbps down, 0.12mbps up
I wandered into the shop to ask if they could test the SIM in another phone, or another SIM in mine (both helpfully suggested by Vodafone's Twitter staff - yeah, 'cos we've all got loads of iPhones and compatible SIMs lying around to test with...) but was met with the attitude of "Yeah, it's sometimes like that. What do you expect?!"
Well, young lady, for a £600 device running on a supposedly world-class network that costs me over £40 a month to access, I expect a *little* more than to be able to check for any new webmail within about 2 minutes. As for actually reading any mail items? Forget it!
6 months to go on this contract and then I can rid myself of this awful, awful network forever. The best part? They adopt such a condescending, patronising attitude if you ever so much as suggest there may be something lacking in their provision (witness: Aylesbury lady and their response to the Rootmetrics report).
I'm aware that all networks have their faults, but I've had far better experiences with Three and Orange in the past and the number of times I've been in a city centre location and watched as colleagues/friends on other networks have been able to download videos, maps etc. while I watch a progress bar (can't ever recall being in the opposite position, weirdly) tells me I can't go wrong with almost any other provider.
On evidence of my work Blackberry I'll probably steer clear of O2 though...
"I really don’t want to see an ad for nappies in front of the video for my dad’s memorial service."
Typically greedy RealNetworks bigwig can't see past the fact that YouTube allows to enable or disable monetisation on a per-video basis.
Fair point, but the slight difference is that your £6/mo buys you transient access to a tiny fraction of the video content made in the last 50 years, with almost nothing produced in the last 12 months.
Conversely, the £10/mo for the music service gets you just about everything that's been recorded and committed to bits in the same period*, with most new releases available immediately for stream and download.
Imagine a £18/mo video service that offered the same freedom? Doesn't seem likely, does it?
I think longer term the music model may prove to be more sustainable.
As for Chromecast the only issues I've had are with occasionally unresponsive control, but that may be my BT HH3 which seems to be on the way out. Great little device for sticking on the kids' distinctly un-smart bedroom TVs.
*Digital hold-outs excepted. AC/DC, I'm looking at you *growls*
Marketing dept. invents scandal, generously astroturfed 'outrage' ensues, press release on the wire within hours.
I expect better from El Reg.
When you consider the resources you need to employ just to get that one washer you need from the DIY store though, things change markedly.
In addition to the minuscule resources to actually make the single washer you need you have to pay for:
Packaging, transport and all the other overheads for the manufacture of the washers (and CO₂ if you care about such things)
Overheads for the store (+CO₂)
A car; taxed, insured, sitting on your driveway
The fuel, wear and tear of getting to the store and back (+CO₂)
The time take for the above.
And then you have 999 washers sitting in the garage.
A future where printing just one washer at a low enough cost, even if this is a few orders of magnitude greater than the current negligible bulk production cost, will be hugely disruptive.
Even the crappiest Android device running Wi-Fi Analyzer can show unique APs with the same SSID. Why carry around that old junk?
You've obviously never used iOS 7 on an iPhone 4 before then.
I can only imagine Apple's idea was:
"Let's give iPhone 4 users a faithful emulation of the performance of an original HTC Wildfire. That'll get them to upgrade"
"For now, Android doesn’t have to be much better; and only a widespread consumer revolt (which is hard to envisage) will force either Samsung or Google (or both) to improve the rotten UX and performance with well-written native code, and better design."
You were doing so well until then.
Absolutely. My Legend was a beautiful device for its time but I swore off HTC due to the lack of support mere months after it dropped off their 'latest & greatest' roster.
Similarly, Sony lost my business when they started playing silly buggers with OS updates, reneging on promises previously made.
Both companies would have to work hard to convince me they've changed their spots, but I have to say Sony's rehabilitation is proceeding much better than HTC's.
Grown men of a certain type seem obsessed with Doctor Who, but in the fervour of their reverential wankfest seem to overlook that it's a programme for kiddies.
No point moaning about plots, story arcs or retconning arbitrary Macguffins, you might as well debate the same things for Tommy Zoom or Scooby Doo.
Flame away, Whotards...