* Posts by defiler

990 posts • joined 18 Oct 2010

Star Wars: The Complete Saga Blu-ray disc set

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Greedo shooting first

Han's a bad-ass smuggler. Greedo is a bounty-hunter, where bad-assery is more or less a prerequisite. At that range, if either of them pulls the trigger, the other guy is going down.

It's a tense negotiation, with Han being held at gunpoint. Finally, with the gun pointing straight at Han, Greedo fires and takes half the plaster off the wall. What the fuck? Did he bend his blaster or something? He's supposed to be a bad-ass, but he can't shoot an adult human at a range of about 4 feet! That's so ham-fisted, he could make a knuckle sandwich sound quite appealing.

That's the bit that makes no sense. If there was a scuffle, lurching to feet, table thrown over, and *then* Greedo missed, it would be understandable. But to change history to make a shady character look like a nice guy is just stupid. You might as well have had Joseph Stalin in the editing suite...

Han's a bastard. He shot first to make sure he didn't shoot last. He's a smuggler, not a nice guy. That's who he's supposed to be. Put it back.

Hands on with the Windows 8 fondleslab

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Crappy controls

Yeah - my jibe was the whole pointy-fingery / pen interface that's being gushed over. Would suck a bit for (most) (existing) games.

Now someone's going to rome out with Angry Birds for Windows just to prove me wrong...

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Come on - get it out of the way...

Just waiting for the usual nonsense "but can it play Crysis?"

The answer's probably "yes, but the controls are crappy."

More transistors, Moore’s Law, less juice

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Koomey's Law, Rav's Law, Moore's Law...

Can we not just accept that they're all linked, wrap them up together, and call them Brannigan's Law?

Windows 8: First contact with Microsoft Touch

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Is consistency a problem?

So Win7 looks similar to Win95/NT4. And they both look similar to RISCOS2 if you want to fire up the 1.21 jiggawatts. But (for the most part) the interface works. It's supposed to be a tool, not a fashion statement. After all, do car manufacturers go out of their way to hide all the controls every few years just to amke a fashion statement? Except Renault of course.

Hey, maybe the new interface will work well - I don't know. What I do know, though, is it'll piss me off trying to find the same old settings in their new hidey-holes...

AMD snags Guinness World Record for clockiest chip

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Aww crap

Here come the miinmum specs for Windows 8...

Why modern music sounds rubbish

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"music doesn't need to be good. It only needs to sell"

Bingo - +1 for that right there...

Ohio man cuffed for shagging inflatable pool raft

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I asked her name and in a dark brown voice she said


L-I-L-O Lilo.


Profit-disaster CEO at Blue Coat: I'll get my coat

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Ugh - that's pretty ugly...

Thanks for pointing it out though - glad it makes sense to somebody!

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"following declining sales and profits in fiscal first quarter 2012"

Wow - crystal balls and pessimism really are a shitty mix, eh?

Sony slashes PlayStation 3 prices

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Doesn't have to be their flagship for 10 years.

Maybe they get another 2 years out of it before releasing PS4, and then maintain sales for 3 more years to catch the crowd that want a fairly posh console but don't want to blow the bank on the state-of-the-art device?

They sold PSOnes for a while after the PS2 was launched, and I'm certain PS2s were available for a long time after PS3. Makes perfect sense.

2nd-hand Popemobile, also used by Neil Armstrong, for sale

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Important buyer's questions...

What's the fuel economy like? Does it qualify for zero road tax? Does it turn water into petrol, or do you need the Pope in the back for that? Can I use the bus lanes in it?

You have to admit that it looks better than the Fiat Panda or whatever it was with the greenhouse on the back in the 80s...

US robochopper cargo skyhook gets another $47m

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Except that they all like to fly.

Even if it's a boring flight, it's still better than pushing paper around a desk, or waiting in the dole queue. If they get rid of the routine manned flights, they could get rid of maybe 3/4 of the helicopter pilots. There just won't be the need for them.

Of course, it means that air crews will be freed up so that more of the tricky jobs can be attempted at once, but there'll be a limit on how many aircraft are available. Also, if the helicopters no longer need an armed escort, that's (again) either more aircraft freed for other duties, or more pilots taken off the flight roster.

Beancounters will be happy. Pilots won't.

Cloud box does virtualization sans SAN

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Nice, but pricey

Here's a market segment to go for. Mainstream commodity servers (Proliant DL360/DL380 for example), and smallish companies who've found it cost-effective to virtualise their servers, but balk at the £10k+ pricetag of 1Gb iSCSI, or £15k for FC. Saying it's $25k per node for a "discounted starter pack" is a bit steep considering they're only really talking about 2-socket machines.

Nice idea. Let's do it again with a target market in mind though, eh?

Apple Mac Mini 2011

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Pretty little thing

I looked at the Mac Minis last time they were updated for a networked media player. Way overpriced though. Hacked the hell out of an ATV1 with XBMC, and it works nicely. Added another telly in my house, and looked at the Mac Mini again. Still stupidly expensive, so I have a dinky little eMachines 1401 running XBMC.

I'd pay a premium for something that just looks really nice, but since I can play 1080p on a £130 eMachines box, that's a hell of a premium. Even if it was double the eMachines, I'd be interested, but at 4x the price? That dog won't hunt, Monsegniour.

Neurogaming set to be launched by Disney

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Why can't she be the other kind of mermaid?

You know, with the fish part on top and the lady part underneath!

Now go and watch some Futurama, dammit!

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Sex sells, it seems

Interesting that the first two comments visible are about using this for sex. I'd be a liar if I said that wasn't the first thing to go through my head too... Remote-control foreplay, anyone?

Falling axe strikes space shuttle workers

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The cream of the crop?

They'll stay within NASA. They're not stupid, and the very best staff will be retained because they'll never know if they need them.

The people with overspecialised jobs which are totally dependent on the Shuttle and can't have their skills transferred are the ones who'll be hit hardest. As pointed out, though, private space flight is a growth industry. They won't be able to accommodate all of the newly-redundant from the governmental programme, but they'll take at least part of the sting out. And then there's always the option of working with India / China, if the commute's not too bad!

PlayStation phone prices plunge

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Ironic really

Ironic that the Nintendo should force a price drop, when the single USP for me was being able to play Nintendo GBA games with a pad... Ho-hum. Advance Wars, anyone?

Bullfrog Syndicate

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One agent, every mission

My preferred tactic was just to leave the agents in the freezer. Take one, and tool him/her up as far as I could afford. Then take on the mission. 5 shields could give you a constantly-recharging defence, and by the time you needed that there were miniguns strewn around the streets.

Atlantic Accelerator with only one agent was surprisingly easy. I even completed the AA without firing a single shot once. And no Persuadatron.

Welcome to the dawning of a new empire!

Ten... in-ear headphones

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Used to have the older 530s

They broke :(

I got a pair of 420s half-price, and they're so close to as-good it's wonderful - especially when they "only" cost me about £120. Don't have that elitist factor though...

Atlantis crew pay awkward tribute to 'iconic' shuttle

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1.4 MIPS

Pretty impressively slow! Even in 1991, that was far, far below state-of-the-art. Hell, my Archimedes would pop 3 or 4 MIPS at the time (can't remember).

I know, by the way - the right tool for the job. It doesn't have to be fast, it just has to be reliable. I just get some amusement in that people think the stuff on the space shuttle is all whizz-bang-amazing gear, and then you find out that it's not. I suppose it's just whizz-bang-amazing in a different direction.

Better get on with work. I'm clearly rambling, and trying to distract myself from getting a job done. Besides, the switch I need to rewire is up 4 flights of stairs. Bah.

Samsung readies 'world's first' solar netbook

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Nice idea, but...

Where's my ARM netbook? Solar panel could run that even in the dark!

Peugeot iOn e-car

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Two observations

1) Yep, EDF's electricity is almost 50% nuclear. That means they can't really throttle it overnight, so there's a big incentive for them to set up an infrastructure to allow people to use the surplus overnight generation and store it up in their car for the next day's commute.

2) There seems to be a lot of this "you don't buy an electric car, you lease it" stuff going about. Is this the way the car market is going? I hope not. I want to be able to buy a car and keep it for 15+ years so long as it's safe and useful. Hell, my everyday motorbike is 14 years old, and still has loads of life left in it. If we end up leasing cars for only 3 years, surely the waste created by disposing of these vehicles and recycling them will be worse than just running a petrol/diesel car around in the first place!

I'm certainly not against the idea of electric cars. I just don't want to be in the pocket of someone else for my transport. And I'm too fat for a bicycle!

Rare video: Moon flashing in front of giant's face

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We're all computers

You're the last one left...

LucasArts Day of the Tentacle

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Squeaky mattress

That stupid mattress stalled me for a full 6 hours. Ah - the good old days before walkthroughs available on web browsers. Kids today... Blah blah.

Oh, and don't forget Maniac Mansion (fully playable) inside Ed's computer.

Boffins brew up formula for consummate cuppa

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Brewing time

One thing that everyone appears to have missed is that brewing time is heavily dependent on the water you use. I'm well-versed in the water we have here in Edinburgh. In London, though (apart from having a kettle full of scum), you only need to let the teabag *see* the water before it's ready. And in Glasgow it seems that you have to beat the shite out of the bag to get anything approaching colour or flavour.

Shoddy research.

Assam. Black, no sugar, ta!

X-51A hydrocarb scramjet flames out in second test

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Weapons like socks?

You end up with lots of odd ones?

DARPA issues call for notions on Starship-for-2111 plan

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"Squash the USA like a bug"

You mean China then?

(Probably not even worth the "joke" icon - especially in 2111...)

Iranian pimp plates arse up Afghan car sales

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Also refused the plate of my choice

I reckoned P155 OFF would be nice for ducking through traffic on my bike. DVLA said no.

And I think you meant "£250 for a bad Scrabble hand."

Dam Busters dog dubbed 'Digger'

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DVD release?

There's going to be more shots of dogs in the "deleted scenes" than in all of Crufts...

ARM server hero Calxeda lines up software super friends

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480 cores in 2U?!

Well fuck me with a haddock!

That is all...

Anonymous vows to attack Federal Reserve

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Wasn't it Sun Tsu?

Don't go to war, and then seek to beat your enemy. First beat your enemy, and then seek to go to war.

Of course they'll figure out that they can carry through a threat before making it. They'd look a bit silly otherwise.

Blu-ray sales to overtake DVD... next year

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Blu-Ray gives a better picture even on SD screens. You might not believe it, in which case fair enough, but with the higher bitrate of the encoding things just look super-clear. And a decent Blu-Ray on an HD screen is really spectacular. So long as you're not sitting too far away, of course.

Yes, they're still a bit expensive. I'll buy Blu-Ray if I feel the movie justifies it or if I get it dirt-cheap. I'll buy DVD otherwise.

I am concerned that "HD" downloads will just be 1080p with crappy encoding at the lowest bitrate they can manage. The nice thing with DVD/BluRay is that the medium is a set capacity so there's no penalty in filling it - so high-quality encoding is encouraged.

3D-printed bikini goes on sale

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NSFW? Seriously?

What are you? Amish? Should you be allowed on the internet at all then?

Seriously, you must have a *very* prudish office...

New Sony hack exposes more consumer passwords

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Fines don't really work

Corporation (n): An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility.

Until you can *personally* fine the board of directors (and ensure that they don't just claim it back as expenses or a bonus), or you can *personally* jail the board of directors, they're basically immune to the law.

Sure you can fine the company, but that comes from the shareholders. The shareholders can *demand* a change of the board, but that means golden parachutes for all! The directors walk with a fat wallet, and head into another post just as soon as possible. After all, do you think people would be so pissed off if Fred Goodwin was actually jailed, rather than sent scuttling on his merry way with a warm handshake and enough cash to choke a donkey?

Chinese teen flogs kidney to buy iPad

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That's pretty-much what I thought

I'm sure if the lad has one fully-healthy kidney it won't be so severe, but he'll still have to watch his intake very carefully, and even then has likely lopped a few years off his lifespan.

A few years of all the joys (and otherwise) that the world has to offer, or a portable telly you can tickle? Not really a hard choice. Makes me feel a bit sad for him.

Xperia Play gets new games boost

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Not really caring about the PS games

GBA emulator, on the other hand, gives me Advance Wars!! Monkey Ball! Maybe there'll be a Megadrive emulator as well. Nice simple games that kick ass on a small screen, but just need a controller.

Think I'll swing into the O2 shop today and see what they've got...

What is UltraViolet™ and why should you care?

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Thoughts on this...

How open will they be to developers of playback equipment. LoveFilm told XMBC to piss off quite succinctly, but would UV allow them to add this functionality?

Would I be able to not only stream a movie, but download a copy to play locally? That way I could get full quality if I were prepared to wait for the download. Hell, I could be sitting at work, and request a movie to download to my machine at home.

How about those of us with home servers? Yup, I've ripped my DVDs; nope, I don't see a problem with that because I'm keeping the discs in the attic. Could I take these UV downloads and keep them in the same pool to playback on any device on my network?

I'd want a guarantee that whatever I bought could be downloaded in full, and could still be played on standard equipment even if/when the UV service was closed down.

Part flash, all flash or dedicated flash?

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Wear-levelling across an array?

Is it just me that thinks this is a clever idea gone horribly wrong? If your wear is levelled across the array, you'll surely have a surge of drive failures at the same time. This is not only a pain in the arse for your budget, but also means that once the first drive dies you only have a very narrow window to replace *all* the drives. I smell some bad arrays on the horizon...

Total Recall rehash – exit Martians, enter Jessica Biel

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John Woo / Payback

I think you're talking about Paycheck. Payback was (shock!) an excellent movie with Mel Gibson, directed by Brian Helgeland.

ARM-based MacBook Air test sample spied

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Why not?

For one, they're keeping their options open. For two, how fast is "fast enough"? Most of the time your computer sits there looking stupid whilst waiting for the meaty thing in front of it to respond...

If it can be made "fast enough" for mobile executives to crank out documents and emails (and of course get onto YouTube to play videos of that 911 with the sports exhaust that they're fancying buying once their bonus comes through), then it'll probably be able to last 14+ hours without a recharge. That's worth a lot to some people. And if they can sell it for more money (on the basis of being able to fly to Bankok without plugging it in), even with cheaper parts inside, then it's goer.

All-day computing? In the Intel world that comes with a power adapter...

Fourth Euro star truck christened Albert Einstein

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That's what I'd have expected

Sort of like a scuba rebreather - just automagically remix the gases to keep the proportions correct.

Yes, you'll lose some to space, but it's only really the oxygen, carbon dioxide and nitrogen we're worried about, and they'll make their own CO2.

Still, if I can come up with that idea it 10 seconds, I'm sure other clever people have already considered it and ruled it out. Anyway, I have my own job to be getting on with!

NASA 'deep space' ship: Humans beyond orbit by 2020?

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Only problem is...

Companies are there to make money - normally for shareholders - not to take huge, expensive flights of fancy. After all, spaceflight isn't cheap - it's absurdly expensive just to put a satellite into geostationary orbit.

Musk is merely (ha!) building the tools so that others can stump up the big bucks to actually go out there and fly the missions. I'm sure he intends to get his money back. Maybe if it's deemed financially viable to go out and pick up raw materials from asteroids, then private industry will pick up the baton. Until then, though, the government penny is the only one that will pay.

Sure, NASA could probably do with a bit of thinning out, and private industry could reasonably build the tools required, but governments have a greater incentive to fund deep-space missions than private companies.

That's the way I see it, at least.

Dear Dell and Microsoft: You're not Apple

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Although to be fair

Internet Explorer didn't exist when early Mosaic was kicking about. And yes, I remember it (when it wouldn't display pictures in the browser), and gopher too.

I do agree with you in principle though - Internet Explorer first appeared at version 2, and was rubbish. v3 was actually not bad compared to its peers (namely Netscape 2 and 3), and even though IE5.5 was an abomination for developing to, it was rather nice to use (again, compared to the bloated struggling mess that was Netscape 4).

Just because Microsoft declared the internet finished with IE6, and let everyone else actually do the job of making browsers conform to the standards, their browsers have *generally* been quite nice to use. That said, I can't remember when I last loaded IE on this machine - I'm using Firefox 4, and rather liking it.

Engineering student cracks major riddle of the universe

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Well you've got until October. Get to it, man!

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Can we finally close the book on this one, please?

We've got a Rapture to be getting on with, and we've already had to postpone it twice while they sorted this missing mass out...

Steve Ballmer window-dresses Windows 8

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You'll have a wait then

Looks like you're picking up every third one

95, skip 98 and NT4.0

98SE, skip 2000 and ME

XP, skip XP/x64 and Vista

7, skip 8 and ??

We'll have looped back to Windows 1 by the time you come back, but on the bright side it'll all work much faster!

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It's okay - we have a training course for that

At a price, of course!

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