* Posts by TonyB

9 posts • joined 26 Oct 2010

Hundred-million Kiwi Oracle project on hold after Deloitte review

TonyB

From the book "I've been thinking" (1996) by New Zealand politician Richard Prebble:

"The Post Office told me they were having terrible problems tracking telephone lines ... They found an excellent program in Sweden which the Swedes were prepared to sell them for $2m .... So the managers decided to budget $1m for translating into English and another $1m for contingencies.

... But, as the general manager explained, it had turned out to be more expensive than the contingency budget allowed and they needed another $7m

"How much", I asked, "have you spent on it so far?"

"Thirty-seven million dollars" was the reply.

"Why don't we cancel the programme?" I asked

"How can we cancel a programme that has cost $37m?" they asked

"Do you believe the programme will ever work?" I asked

"No, not properly"

"Then write me a letter recommending its cancellation and I will sign it"

The relief was visible. I signed the letter, but I knew I needed new managers."

Microsoft devises new way of making you feel old: Windows NT is 25

TonyB

Unless I missed it, I'm surprised no one has mentioned the book Show Stopper!: The Breakneck Race to Create Windows NT and the Next Generation at Microsoft, (G.Pascal Zachary), a great read.

Skype Classic headed for the chopping block on September 1

TonyB

Same situation here. My chair-bound 87 year old mum in UK could manage Skype on her smart TV. If I saw she was online I knew it was all ok, she gets an onscreen message, presses OK and we're talking to each other. Then in the interests of improving Skype it got pulled. Hutber's Law at work.

Wannabe W1 DOW-er faked car crash to track down reg plate's owner

TonyB

Re: And what about the DVLA?

Perhaps the system should be changed so that when a private (non police) entity asks for ownership details, you are also sent a copy of the response. And if it shows that the enquiry came from 'Ethical Parking Limited' and a week later you get a penalty demand from 'Bovver Boy Parking', you know that EPS have passed on your details to BBP (probably the same person, but legally separate entities so presumably in contravention of DVLC rules) and on receipt of a complaint, DVLC should stop both entities from accessing their data.

So long Lotus 1-2-3: IBM ceases support after over 30 years of code

TonyB

WordPro - the one bit of Lotus SmartSuite I've used - is still in use here, running fine on my Windows 10 box. Every time I use it I remember why I hate Word so much.

TonyB

I still regularly use Lotus WordPro and much prefer it to Word (though familiarity is no doubt a factor). Microsoft have a reputation for copying other people's ideas - I wish Word had copied a few from WordPro, in particular the right-click tabbed property inspectors.

MS Word deserves DEATH says Brit SciFi author Charles Stross

TonyB

Give me WordPro

WordPro, last updated c.2000, is still my word processor of choice. I do use Word 2010 on occasions and it is just such hard work as compared with WordPro's right-click property boxes. Even simple things in Word are poorly implemented when compared with WordPro - for example insert an index entry in Word and you're asked for the index text each time; WordPro gives you a combo drop-down list of what you've already added so you can be consistent.

Happy 50th birthday, Compact Cassette: How it struck a chord for millions

TonyB

IIRC one of the boosts for cassettes was a Which report c.1964 which compared the Philips cassette recorder with standard consumer tape decks. Surprise - the Philips beat lots of the full size rivals (probably the ones using el-cheapo BSR decks) on sound quality.

EU to lift flight ban on carry-on liquids

TonyB

Duty free shops will benefit?

Surely duty free shops aren't affected - unless I mis-remember the procedure, you're relieved of any excess liquids as you pass through security scanning and then can buy whatever you like in the airside duty free shops.

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