* Posts by Richard Street

7 posts • joined 4 Jun 2007

Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch

Richard Street

Re: Eh?

As the owner of two 'smart watches' may I offer an alternative:


1. reach in pocket, pull out phone (try not to drop it if moving)

2. activate screen

3. hold phone up to face, see time

4. put phone back in pocket (try not to drop it again if moving)


1.twitch wrist, noticing how the thick rubber wristband has made your lower arm hot and sweaty

2.glance down and realise you forgot to charge the watch last night

3.try to find cable and realise this is at home/in desk/bottom of bag/lost

4.charge watch for 45 minutes wondering if it is worthwhile

5.restart watch and pray bluetooth connects

6.do happy dance when connection happens

7.wait as watch updates slowly over bluetooth with 57 missed email headlines

8.give up and use phone

9.add watch to box labled minidisc player, palm pilot and beta max video

Richard Street

So you're saying it should have been 'Digital Knob'??? ;)

Google Nest, ARM, Samsung pull out Thread to strangle ZigBee

Richard Street

Re: New Protocol ? I don't think so..

This article should have been entitled 'Too late Google - Thread is Dead (for the UK at least)'

Some of you may have missed this but the £11bn roll out of Smart Meters may be a little bit relevant here as they will all connect to the 'Home Hub' using a Zigbee protocol. (Feel free to read the several thousand pages of technical specifications available on the DECC website like I had to over the last 5 years.)

This makes all other protocols largely irrelevant in the UK in the long term as all (well most as it will not include people with tin foil 'Radiation' defending hats) houses will have some type of Zigbee based home automation network. Manufacturers of goods that want to piggyback on this network and measure energy efficiency will have to use this protocol.

This monopolisation of the energy home networking standard has made DECC very nervous about how it promotes and talks about this element of the smart metering standards (as it doesn't want to get sued by proponents of other standards) but if you look hard enough you will find it.

So why Zigbee? It was felt by the majority involved in the smart metering project that it was the only standard that was mature enough to be reasonably secure (don't flame with security flaws - I know), could meet all the technical specifications of the smart metering project and had commercially available hardware at a reasonable price. (Lots of promises from other standards but 'no beef' on actual proven delivery.)

...interesting times!

The UK Energy Crisis in 3 simple awareness-raising pictures

Richard Street

Re: One last post on this subject.....

To answer your questions:

>What are the weather conditions and gas demand in Continental Europe right now?

Cold and demand is relatively high in NWE. Demad is less in the med however where LNG cargoes often go.

>Are they in the middle of a cold snap with high demand as well?

See above.

>Failing that, is there somewhere that Britain could get a shipment of LNG from in the next 10 days (would have to be within at most 2000-3000 nautical miles to arrive in time, even if there was a tanker), and does Britain have the terminal capacity to take that LNG if it could arrive on time?

Yes there are quite a few tankers that could (thoeretically) come to the UK. The company I work for (www.ICIS.com) track all these cargos.

Yes we have plenty of import capacity. We have one of the worlds largest LNG capable harbours in the world in Milford Haven.

It is more likely however that the Norwegians (mainly Statoil) will send us more gas down one of the 3 main pipelines that connect the NCS to the UK.

>And would a tanker or two of LNG make a real difference in a country of 60 million people?

Yes. LNG tankers contain a HUGE amount of gas. The biggest challenge is getting all that gas down the pipes in cold weather. The last couple of times that large industrial customers got cut off due to local shortages was due to the network companies not being capable of delivering the gas quick enough.

>I'd have to think that would be the best you could scare up and get shipped in on time.

Not really. You'd have to assume that LNG will always take some time to arrive as it takes time to unload and regas.

The more likely scenario is that the French or Germans would use the gas they have in storage. This would reduce the amount that the Norwegains need to deliver to them and that this gas would then get sent here. This could happen within a few hours.

Clearly none of this will happen out of the goodness of their hearts so its a question of paying them enough to do this. The truth is that the costs of paying them for the gas is likely to be less than building big gas storage facilities (according to a study by WaterWye in 2005).

BTW The interconnector is no longer the only pipeline between mainland EU and the UK. There is also BBL.

WTF is... UltraViolet

Richard Street

About time too... and now I will stop whinging

For years I have moaned, complained, bitched, whinged about the movie and music industries trying to criminalise their customers and complain that people that download content are costing them $bns. I have trotted out the well worn arguments that they have:

a) devalued their product (e.g. album content is sh1t now - you rarely even get the lyrics, let alone the detailed information that record sleeves - remember them - used to have)

b) failed to make their products portable between devices and easy to use

c) failed to understand the legal and moral difference between breach of copywrite and theft

d) don't appear to understand that just because someone downloads content doesn't mean they would have bought it and that consumers have fixed disposable income

e) repeatedly want to sell the same content over and over (record, cassette, CD, WMA / VHS, SVHS, LaserDisc, DVD, BluRay)

f) have wasted efforts focusing on "piracy" and catching 14 yr old teenagers downloading Katy Perry or some aweful vampire flick rather that fixing problems a+b

This scheme may not be perfect but at least it appears a genuine attempt by the industry to offer a simple, easy, convienent, alternative to bitorrent and other download technologies.

All they have to do now is deliver... and I actually will stop whinging (about that)!

Sony slides out PSP software update

Richard Street

But will it solve the problem for Homebrew???

Many homebrew users get a 'DRNFFFFFFD7' error message when trying to upgrade to the 3.50 firmware. So the question is will this firmware actually work???

No Zune in Europe until 2008

Richard Street

Got one and it's great...

Microsoft were kind enough to give me a Zune as a thank-you for some feedback I gave them on their customer service (or lack thereof)...

... Have to say I'm impressed. To live with it isn't as 'cool' as the ipod but the sound quality is great and the interface is lovely. Graphics are so, so sharp. It's rugged and quite happily sits at the bottom of my bag with now complaints.

Plus since every kid with a Burberry baseball cap has an iPod the 'cool' has become 'commonplace'... My iPod has been sidelined. Long live the Zune.

ps. Only one issue. If you do get an import please be aware you can't use the marketplace as this is US only.

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