* Posts by Chz

105 posts • joined 15 Jul 2010

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The ultimate full English breakfast – have your SAY

Chz

To taste

What *should* be in there is entirely to taste, so long as it comes from a definitive list of acceptable ingredients (which has been discussed to death). I don't like tomatoes. Some people hate mushrooms. I'll only eat black pudding if it's the oaty, Scottish stuff and not the fatty Bury style. That's fine, so long as their replacements come from an accepted list. There's some arguing to be had (I like streaky bacon, but I don't think it belongs in the FEB), but I think we're fairly clear on what's OK. The closest thing to proper heresy I've seen here is that some people don't like tea.

What's more interesting to discuss is what *shouldn't* be in a Full English. Like omelettes, and chips. Not that an omelette with chips isn't a nice breakfast, but neither of the items have any place in a Full English. Or putting it all on something other than a fucking plate. Yes, I've eaten breakfast off a slate tile, and no I wasn't amused by it.

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OnePlus cash equals 5: Rebel flagship joins upmarket Android crew

Chz

Qualcomm hasn't recently proven Snapdragon SOC to be a plus. Last year, the Huawei Kirin was a *better* choice than the 820. The 835 isn't very different to the current Kirin, being a tweaked A53/A73 combo and giving up on their custom cores. The big problem with non-Qualcomm was drivers, but against my expectations Huawei actually dropped the source so there are 3rd party ROMs for Kirin SOCs.

I've got an Honor 8. Up to the May security patch bundle of 7.0. Supposedly we're getting 7.1 (and presumably a security update) by end of summer. That's not great compared to having a Nexus/Pixel, but it's not awful by third party standards. Certainly it could be better, but expectations are low. I'd say I'm happier with my (cheaper) purchase than a co-worker with the OPO3t.

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His Muskiness wheels out the Tesla Model 3

Chz

Re: It will retail for just $35,000

BMW used to be at the forefront of H2 cars - they saw it as The Future quite a long way back and were pretty much the ambassadors for it. How quickly we forget all the hydrogen powered 7-series ferrying people around at the 2012 Olympics.

But even they've been quiet on it lately and pushed out the nifty little i3 instead. I think that sort of puts the writing on the wall, when the technology's biggest pusher has quietly shelved it.

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Concorde without the cacophony: NASA thinks it's cracked quiet supersonic flight

Chz

Re: Engines

Your points about reheat are true, but it was still a noisy bugger without it. I remember it sitting in the Heathrow queue a few times (normally they had priority, but sometimes they got stuck in it) over south London. From Hyde Park it was still loud enough to make everyone notice.

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OnePlus accused of installing cheat codes for benchmarks with new handset

Chz

Huwaei Honor 8, similar to Samsung. Up to the April patches, but still 7.0.

To be honest, that's way more than I expected out of them. I bought the phone resigned to the fact that it may not get much in the way of patching, but since Goog's moved a lot of the Android core into apps update-able through Play I didn't care much.

I was even more shocked when they actually released source a few weeks back so that we now have drivers for the Kirin SoC.

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Wowee, it's Samsung's next me-too AI gizmo: The Apple HomePod

Chz

Interestingly, the Apple speaker is full of Harman tech. Just like the Cortana device. And who owns Harman these days? Oh lookee - it's Samsung!

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The nuclear launch button won't be pressed by a finger but by a bot

Chz

Re: See The Film Wargames

Humans *are* the weak link in the chain, and the US certainly knows it and plans around it.

As in, no you don't need enough weapons to nuke the entire world 3x over, but they know very well that in all probability something like half of their crews will never follow the order to launch. The whole point is that the people with the keys have to go through all sorts of tests to prove they're sane enough to be in command of weapons that can bring about Armageddon - and yet, no sane person could ever follow the order to launch.

I'm sure it's been considered to replace the human element many times, but cooler heads have prevailed.

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Samsung Galaxy S8+: Seriously. What were they thinking?

Chz

Re: How much?!? Just get a OnePlus 3T

I quite like the OP3t, but if you don't mind non-stock Android (and most of the stuff can be replaced with Google versions if you want), I think the Honor 8 is a better buy at £100 cheaper. The metal body and fairly stock OS aren't worth £100 to me, and the Huawei has a combined SD card/second SIM slot.

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MP3 'died' and nobody noticed: Key patents expire on golden oldie tech

Chz

I'd suggest it's entirely possible that someone could tell the *difference* between some of those. What's impossible to tell is which is which, or which one is the high-quality original.

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Huawei P10 Plus: The bigger brother is the real contender

Chz

Re: Forget it...

Personally, it's worth stepping up to the ~£295 Honor 8 over the 6x. That's about what I paid for my Nexus 5 and it's a worthy replacement. Basically fixes all the issues I had with the N5 hardware (battery, camera, CPU a bit klunky these days) in exchange for no longer being stock Android, while still being pretty much the same size. I just wish they hadn't used an experimental frictionless material for the back of it.

As for the EMUI power notifications, one of the first things you should do is turn it off globally under power settings and only choose to turn it on for certain apps.

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'Clearance sale' shows Apple's iPad is over. It's done

Chz

Mid-range market for tablets is depressing

The Asus linked to seems not such a bad deal, until you realise it has:

- a slower processor

- a lower resolution screen

- a higher price

than Tesco's own Hudl 2 had over 2 years ago.

The truly sad thing is that there aren't really any better deals. You've got your premium units over £250 and the sub-£80 units (with all the trade-offs you'd expect), but there's nothing in the £100-200 range that's actually worth the price.

Personally, I snapped up a second Hudl when Tesco found a box of them at the back of a warehouse late last year and flogged them for £69. Since the first one was exclusively for the six year-old's use, I'd forgotten what a stunning screen it has next to the Amazon line-up.

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Huawei's P10 breathing on Samsung's shoulder

Chz

Re: Replacing the battery

It's hardly tedious to pay a shop £50 to do it (cost of battery included).

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The future of storage is ATOMIC: IBM boffins stash 1 bit on 1 atom

Chz

Re: Isn't he at least two levels out?

I did think while I was reading it that storing ONE measly bit on an atom was just laziness. Maybe if it's hydrogen. I'm sure that differing levels of electron excitation would allow storing several bits per atom if they tried harder. :)

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Huawei's just changed the way you'll use Android

Chz

Re: Gestures

The solid state trackball on the Desire was much more useful than the physical roller on the N1 and Hero. (IMO, of course)

Although you did miss out on the trackball being the notification light, which was the one cool thing about the N1.

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Samsung phones, Apple's iPhones are 'overpriced', says top Huawei exec

Chz

Re: Huawei seem a bit pricey too.

For general use, I reckon you're right. But the Kirin chip in the Huawei is vastly more powerful than the Moto's 8xA53 setup.

My main issue with Huawei is that bastard of an "OS" they install. Easily one of the worst Android skins in existence. I'd buy one in a heartbeat if they made an AOSP build available for power users.

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SQL Server on Linux? HELL YES! Linux on Windows 10? Meh

Chz

Target audience is a company that's mostly Oracle on Linux and is so fed up with Oracle's shit that they're willing to try MS. At the moment, we have a few Windows servers about for running SQL but the admin team isn't really well-trained for Windows (and it seems silly to hire an MCSE to run a half dozen servers). Migrating that to RHEL (or whatever) would make things that much simpler.

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Huawei Nova: A pleasant surprise in a 5-inch phone

Chz

Indeed. Unless you desperately need to shave off that half a centimetre of height, the Honor 8 is a far better value and not gigantic in the pocket. The only phone that really competes with the OP3, IMO.

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'Tesco Bank's major vulnerability is its ownership by Tesco,' claims ex-employee

Chz

Re: Speculation and Rumour

"(other major banks do not allow contactless transactions in foreign currencies)"

Blatantly untrue. In fact, Halifax (at least, quite probably others) are beholden to the contactless payment limit of whatever country they're being used in. In my case, I was regularly using contactless without issue up to the Canadian limit of $100 (~£60).

Unless you mean contactless foreign currency transactions *inside* the UK. Even Eurostar doesn't take euros at St. Pancras (annoyingly), and buying forex still counts as a GBP transaction.

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What went wrong at Tesco Bank?

Chz

Banks don't seem to care about customer security

Ten years ago, it was bleeding obvious that security was insufficient at almost all UK banks. That whole "Enter the first, third and fifth number of your PIN" nonsense that would be much more secure if they had enough brain cells to not ask for them in order each and every time. Halifax - for one - still does this, though they've at least moved to selecting from a drop-down list to frustrate the very simplest of keyloggers. HSBC moved to one-time codes and then inexplicably re-introduced the in-order random bits of PIN in their mobile application. Because Android is more secure than a desktop or something.

You can only conclude that they don't actually care.

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Google makes it to third base with Home digital assistant

Chz

Re: Intangibles

Along those lines, if the Echo could read and index the music on my NAS and play it I'd have pre-ordered one in a heartbeat. Uploading all my shit to Amazon is just... lame. And I haven't used that word in a while, but this is an appropriate place to resurrect it.

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British defence minister refuses to rule out F-35A purchase

Chz

Re: A is actually not a bad piece of kit

I'm not saying it *is* as good as an F-16 at visual ranges, but all tests to date have involved neutered F-35s because the software and testing was incomplete. In the test you're most likely referring to, the F-35s were restricted by software to pulling 6Gs. Which is naturally going to lose you an aerial knife-fight.

We still don't really know its capabilities, or lack of them.

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Cheap, lousy tablets are killing the whole market says IDC

Chz

More like killing the middle ground

There are £200+ tablets and there are sub-£100 tablets. Both seem to sell well enough. But with both the Hudl 2 and Nvidia Shield off the market, there is no middle ground left. You either live with 1280x800 and 1GB of memory or you shell out more than twice as much. The Hudl and Shield in the £120-160 range both had lovely Full HD screens and ample memory. What's replaced them? Nothing, that I've seen.

Feel free to point one out, because I'm sure the six year-old will eventually find a way to destroy the Hudl. And I'm not going into the Amazon ecosystem if I can help it.

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Europe loves to pay by bonk* - survey

Chz

Re: Who the hell is using them daily?

Based on the wording of it, they're lumping payments made *ON* mobile phones together with payments made *BY* mobile phones.

I pay my council tax and CC bills with my mobile banking app, so I would count as a mobile payment user. This is despite the fact that I have NFC, have AndroidPay installed, and used it all of once just to see if it worked. I think tap to pay has rendered NFC-equipped mobile payments pretty much obsolete before it got off the ground. (Outside the USA, at least)

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Mercedes answers autonomous car moral dilemma: Yeah, we'll just run over pedestrians

Chz

Re: "Engineered like no other car in the world"

Automated belts were extremely common in the States 25 years ago. At some point the Feds put in a law that the automakers had to introduce either airbags or automatic belts. Well, automatic belts were cheaper so... You can imagine the rest.

As it happens, people *hated* them and vastly preferred vehicles with airbags. A lot of it to do with the uniquely American notion that they didn't need safety belts if they had airbags. (Really. I'm not making that up.) Not only that, but as side airbags were introduced, the automatic belts interfered with them and were quietly dropped.

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Google may just have silently snuffed the tablet computer

Chz

I'll add that they're really great for kids, but that market is essentially split two ways - people with spare cash buy their kids iPads, and people tight on cash won't go more expensive than the late, lamented (by cheap people with kids) Tesco Hudl 2. Which my 6 year-old has been using for the past two years, and there *still* isn't a better value proposition on the market. I think the Nvidia Shield was pretty close, but that's out of production as well now.

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Samsung: And for my next trick – exploding WASHING MACHINES

Chz

Re: Competition

Eh, depends. Whirlpool owns a fuckton of different brands in all sorts of markets. Certainly their Maytag and KitchenAid stuff isn't awful.

My tumble dryer is a branded Whirlpool and seems alright. Mainly because being a heat pump unit it's quite unlikely to self-combust like some of their other products. I do occasionally worry about it having been the cheapest heat pump on the market at the time, but really there's nothing inherently more complicated about them than a resistance dryer so I'm assuming the price premium is for being new and fancy.

Now my old Hoover dryer. It didn't catch fire, it just melted the plug into goo. But that's Candy group, and they specialise in making shit.

I'll give credit to Beko for being cheap and reasonably durable in certain things. Their dishwashers seem pretty decent.

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Matt LeBlanc handed £1.5m to front next two series of Top Gear

Chz

Re: Bah!

I'll happily admit that I only gave NewTopGear three episodes (Episodes?), but LeBlanc seemed awfully wooden. Since Episodes has proven that he *can* act to a limited degree, I do hope he lightened up a bit towards the end. But there was certainly nothing I saw from him that seemed worth $1M a year, bar the fact that he isn't Chris Evans. In fact the both of them did an awful job of letting on that they were reading off a teleprompter. The only bit that Evans did well was the interview, and I'm presuming that since he has gobs of experience there, it's also the only bit that wasn't entirely scripted.

1
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World+dog to get retro classic Commodore 64 for Christmas

Chz

Re: And I want this...

In addition, 6510 emulation is pretty much a solved problem. The one thing that can't be emulated 100% correctly is the SID chip, but it hardly seems worthwhile just for that. The only C64 games I've seen that can't be emulated well are the ones with especially devilish copy protection schemes. (Though trying to find your codewheel for Bard's Tale III 25 years on is a whole other challenge)

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Is Tesla telling us the truth over autopilot spat?

Chz

Re: It is all in a name...

As someone else has said before, in the air it's extraordinarily unlikely that you're in a situation where ignoring the autopilot for 30 seconds will result in your decapitation. In a car, however...

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HP Ink buys Samsung's printer business for a BILLION dollars

Chz

Same old, same old.

While I admit the SOHO Samsungs that I've used are less crap than the HPs of recent vintage, a full set of colour toner cartridges still costs as much as the actual printer did. What, exactly, is my incentive to not throw it out and get a new one? (In my case, the utter horror at the wastefulness of it and the fact that I was only out of black ink)

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The Rise, Fall and Return of TomTom

Chz

In the in-car satnav space, I think they still suffer from the products that are now bundled into cars and phones being "good enough". I've used a TomTom, and I know it's better than the satnav bundled in the Nissan. But said satnav is good enough for our purposes. It would probably fail if we were the sort of people who hop in the car and just go somewhere, but if you're the sort that plans a route beforehand and just uses the satnav to avoid getting lost then the TomTom's extra abilities (I grant that its lane advice is a zillion times better than anyone else's, but that's not enough to purchase one) are a bit wasted.

Having seen the crap that's peddled as fitness gear (the Mrs has a Garmin one, and it's a bit shit), they stand a very good chance in that market if their software is as good as their satnav software. It's just a pity that unless they manage to license to GM or somesuch, they're dead in that market. (Whatever happened to Renault licensing TomTom?)

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Paper mountain, hidden Brexit: How'd you say immigration control would work?

Chz

Home Office

I thought it was quite obvious from the start of campaigning that the Leave side was conveniently overlooking the fact that the Home Office would need to bloat to 10x its current size if we actually pulled out completely. I can't see a Tory government hiring a million more civil servants.

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Bought a GTX 970? Congrats, Nvidia owes you thirty bucks

Chz

A bit puzzling

To my, admittedly incomplete, knowledge, NVidia never made any claims about render outputs and other internal architecture details. Yes, their engineering department erroneously (so they say) gave some details out to the review sites but I don't see that as being the same thing at all. In terms of what was advertised and on the box, it was all completely correct. Sure, you couldn't use all the VRAM, but it was all *there*. Not so different to a 1MB 80286 with no feasible way to use anything above 640k.

Though I suppose that's why they get to claim no wrongdoing. But I thought they'd fight harder.

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Supermicro's macro Microblade: That chassis is... huge

Chz

Re: What racks are you using ?!

It is rather deep, compared to some of the others. That would leave you 1.5" at the back of a standard rack, so you'd best be pretty good with your cabling.

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If The Register made reality music TV, this is what it would look like

Chz

Write in vote

I don't care if it's tasteless (Well, actually I do. That's *why* it's fantastic.), I want Good Vibrations.

3
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ARM Cortex-A73: How a top-end mobe CPU was designed from scratch

Chz

"From scratch"

Not really. It's a logical evolution of the A9/A17 design, which was always better suited to phones than the A57/A72 was. It's only because Apple did the "but we have 64 bits!" thing that this architecture was sidelined until now. They most certainly did not start with a blank canvas - anyone familiar with A17 will see the lineage.

That's not to knock their achievements, of course. It looks fantastic, and because we've been on the A72 line for the past couple of releases it's got quite a lot more going on than its A17 grandfather does due to the amount of time they've had to invest in it.

I know the article mentions this, but the headline and the PR department claims still rankle a bit.

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HTC 10: Is this the Droid you're looking for?

Chz

Re: UI design

In the general case, I certainly agree. In an HTC review, it's a bit touchier since they had the only custom UI that wasn't a complete abortion. Going all the way back to the Nexus One, the Desire was actually a much better phone for running Sense. Admittedly stock Android has now improved to the point where these customizations aren't helpful any more, but I do like to give HTC their due for at least *trying* in the past. I know when I started to run Cyanogen on the Desire it very much felt like a downgrade in terms of usability.

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HTC 10: Flagship goes full Google – but the hardware's top notch

Chz

Re: Yet another landfill flagship

You seem to believe that the battery is "non-removable". No. It's just difficult to remove. For an end user without the right tools, at least. That is exactly the same as your automobile analogy. In the tiny, cramped spaces of a modern car, only people with skills and the correct tools can replace a battery easily. Everyone else takes it to an expert. Phones are the same. I've replaced a Nexus 5 battery before - easy as pie with the right thingamabobs. I've also done a Hudl2, but I didn't have the right shims and whatnot so it doesn't fit completely snug any more. Call it a lesson.

For extra juice on the move, the extra packs are a superior solution to power cycling the phone and ripping the back off. There are ones the size of your thumb for carrying around with you, and ones the size of a good paperback to use when you can put it down for an hour or two. Added bonus that the large packs are equivalent to *several* extra batteries, which I think would be difficult to keep charged at all times. Mine will charge an iPad at full speed, so it sounds like you've just used duff ones for speed. For safety concerns, an enclosed battery pack is *much* safer than a spare battery with exposed contents rattling around. Both are banned from hold luggage. Packs a specifically allowed in cabin in EU/NA at least, but they don't like the look of bare batteries.

There are definitely people out there who can justify a need for an easy, user-replaceable battery. But you're going to have to realise that there aren't very many of them and accept the limited choice this brings you. Go buy a G5, it'll be a great phone once they work their usual LG QA kinks out of it.

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Storage admins.... they'll take your jobs

Chz

Re: relax...

I agree completely, but the last time I was looking for work (this time last year) the number of places that still maintained their own Storage team was getting pretty small. Only the real behemoths still keep specialized storage staff, and everyone else has folded it into the sysadmin role. Not just that, but they didn't regard my lack of storage administration as any big blocker because "it's easy to pick it up". *boggle*

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BOFH: In-depth IT training needs a single-malt distillery

Chz

Research

So did anyone else google "Bastard Junket Watch" on the admittedly remote chance that it actually exists?

3
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So. Farewell then Betamax. We always liked you better than VHS anyway

Chz

Re: Can we finally settle this?

Utter nonsense. Standard 2nd generation Beta II video quality was essentially identical to the equivalent VHS. Even before Sony dropped the tape speed to fit more on a cassette, it would've been difficult to tell the difference (given identical environments, of course) on anything short of a studio monitor. Sound was much, much better though. Super VHS was actually quite a lot better than SuperBeta.

There's no question that BetaCam and especially BetaCamSP were excellent technologies, but that has next to nothing to do with the home market.

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Amazon Echo: We put Jeff Bezos' always-on microphone-speaker in a Reg family home

Chz

Missing a Channel 4/Humans tie-in opportunity.

"I'm sorry Laura, I'm afraid I don't understand the question."

3
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Hyundai i30 Turbo: Softly, softly, catchee Audi

Chz

Re: Fuel economy

Looks like they readjusted their model names for 2015. The old 118i is now a 120i. Everything else stays the same. The 2011-2014 118i is 170hp and 49mpg, so within spitting distance in power with the same turbocharged 1.6L. The point being that BM tunes the little engines more for economy than performance, yet the power difference is within 10% and the fuel economy I've seen in the real world considerably better. There is nothing about a turbocharged engine that makes it inherently thirsty, just that in the vast majority of cases petrol turbos are tuned for power over efficiency.

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Chz

Re: Fuel economy

BMW's equivalent of the same engine is actually quite miserly. It just vents the turbo if you're not stepping on it and I've seen a 118i (very similar power to the Hyundai) return just shy of 50mpg on the motorway. Of course it's a BMW, so it does a little bit more but it is in a lower tax band!

1
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11 MILLION VW cars used Dieselgate cheatware – what the clutch, Volkswagen?

Chz

Re: Software, mileage, and urea

The EPA mileage test, while not quite "real world", does deliver a vastly different picture of vehicle efficiency than the EU test does. It's close enough that a careful driver can beat the claimed figures, at least.

That being said, neither of the tests are supposed to reflect reality. They're simply meant to be a comparison between models. The EU tests might be wildly out sync with reality, but assuming all manufacturers game it the same way then you can compare different cars with each other.

2
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US to stage F-35-versus-Warthog bake-off in 2018

Chz

Re: versus?

Actually, the GAU is surprisingly ineffective against even 1970s-era tanks head-on. The pilots have always been told to go for the sides or rear because the attack profile makes it quite difficult to hit the (very thin) top of the tank. It may have a better attack angle than a mud-sucking armoured vehicle, but you are talking about frontal armour that can bounce a 120mm tungsten penetrator round. The GAU's a very impressive gun, but there's only so much a 30mm round can do. It's rated to 69mm of penetration at 500m.

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Back to school: Six of the smartest cheap 'n' cheerful laptops

Chz
Thumb Up

A Chromebook option would be good

Most universities are playing around with ChromeOS, if only for the cost savings and the ability to completely wipe them to factory settings in seconds. This makes ChromeOS particularly well-supported, especially given that the web versions of Office365 and Skype now work perfectly well on them. Printing is the only gotcha, from what I've seen.

I picked up the Full HD 13" Toshiba. About as expensive as the cheapest ones on this list, but performs quite a lot better, can't pick up a virus, and has limited capability for the teenager to fuck around with it too much before he (inevitably) breaks it.

14
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Q: What's black and white and read all over? A: E-reader displays

Chz

Can't wait for the review

I've been pretty disappointed with my Kobo Touch vs. the Kindles in the house. It's slow, the touchscreen is finicky about actually registering taps, it will randomly turn itself on in my bag and then skip 15 pages ahead, and the font selection is abhorrent. I don't gripe much considering it was half the price, however I do kind of wish I'd just bought the basic Kindle with buttons. But I have also heard that the newer ones are a lot closer to the Kindle in quality terms (looks like price also, unfortunately) , so I'm curious to see if they've reached rough parity.

I do hope you separate out the ecosystem from the other factors. For some, it certainly matters. For anyone who can be bothered to figure out Calibre, it's entirely irrelevant.

0
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Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – a true monster in the making

Chz

Re: 7/10 at best.

While it was a tremendously entertaining game, Shadow of Mordor isn't the same thing at all. The sad little story they've attached to it might as well not be there at all. The Arkham games are still the pinnacle of an action/story hybrid. Mordor is pretty much all about the action.

I rather enjoyed the first Witcher, but in the second one I always felt hindered by the interface. Fighting started as ludicrously hard and very quickly moved to ludicrously easy. Repetitive environments, aggravating quests... For all its buggy quirks, I still liked the first one more. I'm definitely going to give 3 a try, at least. Maybe once someone's patched in (probably 3rd party, going by my experience of 2) control remapping properly.

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Messerschmitts, Sinclairs and a '50s living room: The Bubblecar Museum

Chz

Smuggling

"nine people were smuggled from East to West Germany, one at a time, hidden in an Isetta that had had its battery and cooling system removed."

I just had to click on that link. Aha! Nine in total. I was picturing a clown-car Isetta and how they explained their way past the border police. :)

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