* Posts by Stuart Halliday

906 posts • joined 2 Jul 2007

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'Clive, help us,' say empty-handed ZX Spectrum reboot buyers

Stuart Halliday

IIRC Clive was famous for delaying his products.

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Within Arm's reach: Chip brains that'll make your 'smart' TV a bit smarter

Stuart Halliday

If folks want personal robots, how do expect them to see?

They'll need devices like this and these nuggets won't spontaneously be invented when robots go on general sale.

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Hitler 'is dead' declares French prof who gazed at dictator's nashers

Stuart Halliday

Interesting. I thought the Germans had hidden the bones.

Didn't realise the Russians had came across the bodies.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Um… Why?

Because when people get a set of falseys they usually don't wait until every tooth has fallen out?

Duh.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Still I don't understand why Russian doesn't allow full tests.

Because who wants 1cm holes in your valuable fragments?

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Tech support made the news after bomb squad and police showed up to 'defuse' leaky UPS

Stuart Halliday

OK, why did this so called professional IT company not have the UPS in a standard regular test mode so at least the customer knew that the battery was needing replaced.

They should have had a email from the UPS that it was dead.

They also need to read up about lead acid batteries safety. No need to call the emergency services.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: We shut down central Edinburgh with a fridge

Smelled a little like Ammonia. Doesn't mean it was.

If it's in an office then there should be a health & safety certificate listing what chemicals are in the Fridge.

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Apple and The Notched One: It can't hide the X-sized iPhone let-down

Stuart Halliday

It's got two choices open to it to keep it's shareholders happy.

Increase prices again, or launch a new product that it can sell.

First option seems to be popular with them.

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Apple's magical quality engineering strikes again: You may want to hold off that macOS High Sierra update...

Stuart Halliday
Facepalm

Re: countless issues

Which is why you have in-house Beta Testers and out-house Beta Testers.

The only trouble with out-house testers is unless you're very careful, you end up with a load of folk more concerned with One-Upmanship Status with their friends and they can't be bothered to do any real testing.

Surely Apple hasn't fallen for this old trick?

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Audiophiles have really taken to the warm digital tone of streaming music

Stuart Halliday

Streaming is a young person's game.

The over 50s have no interest.

Still, all my life I've yet to hear a HiFi system that sounds like real-life.

Can we get that sorted?

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Planned European death ray may not need Brit boffinry brain-picking

Stuart Halliday

If you use mirrors, the beam simply bounces off and goes into someone else?

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Boffins pull off quantum leap in true random number generation

Stuart Halliday

One thing I noticed over the decades is that if I seed a RND function with a fixed time value the resultant 'random' number is different on different computers.

So a pile of obsolete computers each feeding into each other.

Sounds very HHGTTG.

Good enough? :)

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Stuart Halliday

Re: how about ...

Brownian motion machine?

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Stuart Halliday

Pardon my ignorance. But take a picture of the sky.

Cloud formation looks pretty random to me, so the bits making up the image should be random (assuming a working CCD)?

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Mark Duckerberg: Second Congressional grilling sees boss dodge questions like a pro

Stuart Halliday

“we thought that when developers told us they weren’t going to sell data” they meant it."

So very naivé or very stupid or lying.

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German sauna drags punters to court over naked truth

Stuart Halliday

Stamp it out.

Just what has this News got to do with Technology or Science?

Isn't it about time The Register stopped telling us about politics or other non technological subjects? :)

Very dull.

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My PC makes ‘negative energy waves’, said user, then demanded fix

Stuart Halliday

Had a customer complaining about radio frequencies with her PC.

She gets headaches seemingly.

I suggest she upgrade from 2.4GHz to a 5GHz Wi-Fi dongle.

She went away happy.

Didn't like to tell her there was about 20 Wifi networks around her as PC World was next door....

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Ariane 5 primed for second launch of year after trajectory cockup

Stuart Halliday

Nice to know that we can still Cock things up big style.

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Badmins: Magento shops brute-forced to scrape card deets and install cryptominers

Stuart Halliday

Re: "Not changing the default credentials" . .

You're not talking about the Human Race sadly. People take the easy path.

If that leads to mud and shite, then they really don't care or know about it to avoid.

Time to put some obstacles in their path and explain why they're there.

Far too much open source software makes the absurd assumption the user knows what they're doing.

Remember when Routers first became available? They were shipped with no security set as it was assumed professionals were going to use them.

The Public got a shock and manufacturers had to ship them with the security turned on.

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Stuart Halliday

Why do they even come with default login details?

Bizarre.

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Which? leads decrepit email service behind barn, single shot rings out over valley

Stuart Halliday

Re: What other Which

TIP: If you have a direct debit with a company, make sure they know it's been cancelled. A phone call to their Support department will be recorded.

Contact your Bank as well.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Which Which?

Which is far too out of touch with modern lecherous manufacturing practices.

They don't inform or advise about these.

They're heading for the Old Folks Home as their customers die off and they don't modernise.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Which Which?

Personally they're far too non-technical and generic these days.

They should be flagging the sellers and manufacturers who are dishonestly portraying their products as shiny and new when they're old and crap.

When the fake capacitor scandal hit Britain, they said nothing. When modern TVs started faking 10bit panels, they just ignored it.

There is just too much fake stuff on the market for them to keep quiet on it.

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Take the dashboard too literally and your brains might end up all over it

Stuart Halliday

Had a few electronic thermometers, nothing special. But I did wonder how accurate they were.

So I took a medical thermometer which I assumed would have to be accurate and put it in water at 35°C as read by the device.

Each of cheap thermometers were dipped in and their display read. So, after trying 4 of them, readings went from +6° to -2° out.

Manufacturer datasheet promised +-2°C...

Moral is, never trust one sensor, use a minimum of 3.

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Stuart Halliday

What do Military vehicles do?

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Up the stack with you: Microsoft's Denali project flashes skinny SSD controllers

Stuart Halliday

Here we go again...

Gee do these companies never learn?

Don't do it.

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Huawei joins Android elite with pricey, nocturnal 40MP flagship

Stuart Halliday

Re: INterpolation?

Andrew Orlowski is obviously limited in his technology experience.

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Meet the open sorcerers who have vowed to make Facebook history

Stuart Halliday

Doesn't matter what program people use. If it's successful people will abuse it, profit from it and annoy people.

Then we'll get the evangelicals charging in to 'save us' and it'll all start again.

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Stuart Halliday

Try Oban. Pretty much zero GSM.

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Leaning tower of NASA receives last big arm

Stuart Halliday

At the time, NASA told The Register: "The mobile launcher is built in accordance with standard steel construction code, including predicted, allowable deflection accounted for in the design."

Scots Engineer - It's supposed tae dae that.

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Credit insurance tightens for geek shack Maplin Electronics

Stuart Halliday

Re: You cant have it both ways

Maplin's attitude was, if you want it individually, it's there in front of you right now.

Take it or leave it.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Screwfix

Yes, I 100% agree. You see Maplin doesn't really train their staff. They have a few silly sheets of what an item is.

But they certainly never mention anything about bend radius.

Had a customer who laid out 50M of 75 Ohm video cable to his CB aerial in his garden.

He'd came in wanting a little more. Of course I asked what it was for and was a little shocked that he thought the video cable being cheaper that the 50 Ohm would do him.

He admitted he thought the range of his rig wasn't very good.

Turns out he didn't know what a

SWR meter was either.

I found most CB enthusiasts, mainly Taxi operators, didn't know about them or think they were necessary.

Myself being a qualified Electronics Craftsman, I'd often give technical advice in my shop. I'd sometimes be asked to give advice.

But the kids that Maplin would hire were mostly males. Mainly due to them applying for the job. The few Women I came across were intelligent and very capable of learning new stuff. But the guys, sadly not so much.

Despite me being a trained IT Professional as well, the Manager would direct a customer to a 19 year old to explain Computers which annoyed the hell out of me.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: You cant have it both ways

No, Maplin virtually disappeared in the Nineties because you can't have a shop selling 50p items which have to be collected and bagged by a nontechnical assistant. Maplin'said attitude to the component section was it was a necessary evil.

You simply don't make a long lasting profit from this stuff.

If it hadn't branched out into toys. It would have evaporated decades ago.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Screwfix

Maplin never, ever made up cables for customers.

We weren't insured for it and certainly never trained to do it.

Sure a few shops thought they would offer this service unofficially. But I wouldn't trust a cable made on the spot by staff who don't understand the technical idiosyncrasies of terminating cables depending on type.

<shudder>

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Screwfix

Maplin relied almost exclusively on Rolson for it's tools.

Basically cheap and sometimes nasty.

They're idea of going to higher quality tools was bringing in German tools that no one had heard of. Most were only available from their Web site.

What baffled me was that the way Maplin packaged and presented them. No reason given why a customer would buy this model over another.

I suggested, from talking to Tradesmen who'd come in for a decent tool, that you put the hardness rating of the screwdriver metal on display therefore allowing the customer to make an informed decision.

This went unheeded apparently.

If you want to build up a reputation for selling something, you don't just offer it

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Stuart Halliday

Re: You cant have it both ways

Maplin made a point of setting up near Halfords. Similar customer profile.

Customers would everyday moan about PC World prices and lack of Sales staff with a working Brain.

It became a sort of joke with us.

But Maplin moved very slowly, almost glacier like. Their Web site was bloody awful and despite staff complaining about it for over 6 years, it never got any better despite various looks changed.

There are obviously no technical people at the top.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: You cant have it both ways

They do have the odd practice of having their 'basic' brand HDMI 1M cable at £5.99 in corners of the gondoliers well away from the HDMI cable section.

They'd do this with lots of cables. Bizarre immoral practice in my opinion.

Their most profitable item is a litre of ISO alcohol for £12. They pay a quid for it.

If you have any questions, just ask. I was a frontline sales assistant for 10 years.

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Chemical burns, explosive fires, they all come free with Amazon power packs

Stuart Halliday

Made in China no doubt.

They really don't have the grassroots demand for quality that other countries do.

You do have to be very demanding in examining their quality, order after order.

I found when doing repeat orders, they often just ship you an equivalent without consulting which wasn't your idea of being suitable.

Perhaps it's because they live very far away and know it's to their advantage and not yours.

Big companies like Apple have to have their own staff in these factories 24/7.

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Air gapping PCs won't stop data sharing thanks to sneaky speakers

Stuart Halliday

1 bit per sec? This is a joke right?

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Auto manufacturers are asleep at the wheel when it comes to security

Stuart Halliday

I say find out the people writing this stuff and ask their opinion why they're writing shite?

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Reg man wraps head in 49-inch curved monitor

Stuart Halliday

OK, why a curved screen?

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Does my boom look big in this? New universe measurements bewilder boffins

Stuart Halliday

"It's not a Bug, it's the Universe."

That's my new phrase...

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Guess who else Spectre is haunting? Yes, it's AMD. Four class-action CPU flaw lawsuits filed

Stuart Halliday

So the Sales of Good act in England and Scotland state that if you can prove there is a manufacturer flaw in a purchased item, you have 4 or 5 years to claim a fix.

Should be easy enough to prove in this case....

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Astro-boffinry world rocked to its very core: Shock as Andromeda found to be not much bigger than Milky Way

Stuart Halliday

Dwarf Galaxy anyone? ;)

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Here's why online social networks are bad for humanity, the nerds who helped build them tut-tut

Stuart Halliday

The Society companies have simply exposed cultural flaws present in our various countries.

So concentrate on fixing those flaws?

No, we'll do what we've done for hundreds of years and exploit another cultural failure - do the easy option and ignore the actual issue.

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Crowdfunding refund judgment doesn't quite open the floodgates

Stuart Halliday

Kind of reminds me of when Clive Sinclair launched his products.

Massively delayed and people had to pay months before the product even existed.

Nothing new, etc.... :)

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Tsk-tsk, fat cat Softcat: Milk-slurping reseller taken to court

Stuart Halliday

Sounds like the supplier pissed off the local manager.

No use crying over spilled milk?

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NASA finds satellite, realises it has lost the software and kit that talk to it

Stuart Halliday

NASA, no concept of archiving. Should we be worried?

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Thar she blows: Strava heat map shows folk on shipwreck packed with 1,500 tonnes of bombs

Stuart Halliday

It's mainly the actual shock wave. Lots of glass damage from windows, etc.

Every couple of years, the Government reassess the situation and so far the experts say leave it alone again.

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Stuart Halliday

Re: Water movement?

Or a big fish...?

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