* Posts by 45RPM

523 posts • joined 26 Oct 2010

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Southern awarded yet another 'most moaned about rail firm' gong

45RPM
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Greater Anglia used to piss me off every day until I got so fed up that I moved house to Chilterm Railway's patch. The service is now excellent, but I concede that my solution was rather extreme and not remotely practical for most.

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Microsoft hits new low: Threatens to axe classic Paint from Windows 10

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely. @me

@Sandtitz

Here. Have an upvote from me. I wouldn't worry about all the down votes though (look at the reaction to my comments on this thread - very negative, and I can't understand why either (although, since there's no explanation either, I don't care too much))

I can think of some very good reasons to abandon Paint (and any other software extraneous to the OS), not least for reasons of security and developer time required to maintain the software. But I suspect that many of the commentards downvoting you are newbies or have only a passing familiarity with IT (although, doubtless, they'd claim great expertise). The Register used to attract Programmers, Sand Benders, Ops and Sys Admins. Now there also seem to be noobs and gamerz here for the lulz (whatever that means).

Like Viz, the Register just isn't as good as it used to be! Won't stop you coming though, will it? Me neither.

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely.

@Adam 52

I'm not saying that they always behave well, or do the right thing (although, in my experience, they can generally be trusted) - just that they aren't a monopoly any more.

As you say, you had a choice - and you made it. While it lasted, at least, I hope that it was the right one for you. Of course, you could have stuck with Windows 7 - and, presumably, a still working copy of Photoshop.

You could also have chosen to buy a Mac (with Photoshop) or Linux (with something else). So badly behaved, perhaps, but not a monopoly.

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely.

@bombastic bob

Cheaper than what? Cheaper than a Chromebook? Cheaper than a Raspberry Pi?

The thing is that Microsoft’s tactics only work if there’s an advantage to the computer manufacturer playing along. In the past there was an almost unassailable advantage - favourable pricing on Windows. Currently there may well still be an advantage - but that advantage is dwindling. Which brings me to:

Time for some TRUST BUSTING and anti-MONOPOLY actions. You can't just have SOME vendors not playing Micro-shaft's game. It has to become ILLEGAL for them to do it at ALL.

I disagree - I don’t think that the law is necessary here (well, except for lawyers keen on earning another fat fee). I think that market forces will do this - the tide is turning.

It’s fashionable to hate Microsoft, just as it’s fashionable to hate Apple (Google, Facebook, Amazon - insert whipping boy of choice here). The truth is that they all have their advantages and disadvantages. Personally, I quite like Satya Nadella’s vision for Microsoft - I find it infinitely more preferable to the cock up that Ballmer was making of it. Especially now that Linux is being brought into the fold, and I can imagine the day when Windows is a shell on top of Linux. I even like Windows 10. But I’m not a huge fan of masses of bundled software - it leads to laziness and lowest common denominator applications. After all, why install a competitor to MS Paint - even a better one - if MS Paint is bundled? Similarly, I know people who use Notepad even though Notepad++ is infinitely better (and still free).

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Pick the one that you like best and then enjoy it. No need to get religious about it, or worry about what might or might not be wrong over the fence. These things all seem to sort themselves out over time.

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely.

@OldCrow

I know. I know. I’m an eternal optimist. But I can't imagine a day when there’ll be no free software on the Windows Store. In fact, other than the registration fee, I can’t imagine a day when Microsoft will charge per app submission (perhaps I’m not very imaginative). At a time when ChromeOS (and its successors) are breathing down Microsoft’s neck in the low cost space, and Apple are squeezing them at the high end, I can’t see Microsoft doing anything which might lessen Windows’ desirability.

As to “Mom & Pop”, I agree that they probably don’t have the know how to install Linux. But there are businesses which will happily supply a pre-built Linux machine (and, once installed, it’s perfectly easy to use - my mum, a confirmed technophobe, happily uses her Linux laptop without even knowing that it’s Linux - I built it, she uses it. End of.), and it’s just as easy as buying a Windows machine to buy a Mac or ChromeBook - you don’t even have to go to a specialist store, John Lewis will sell you one!

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely.

@bombastic bob

Not being a hardware vendor, perhaps I have an overly simplistic view of the world. But, the way I see it (which I concede may be based on false assumptions and a whole stack of optimism), the hardware vendors don’t need to play along with Microsoft. A vendor could conceivably say ‘actually, we’re not going to make any Windows computers - we’ll supply our machines pre-installed with Linux or ChromeOS’. Of course, if a buyer wants Windows then they can still buy, at full cost, a boxed copy of Windows - but otherwise they can save a bob or two and have an OS which may be just as functional for what they need to do.

In fact, this is pretty much exactly what Eight Virtues, System76 and ZaReason do. I imagine that this model will become more prevalent in the future, especially now that Linux has proven itself on the desktop.

Actually, now I come to think of it, this is also exactly what Apple does, Raspberry Pi (the latest being perfectly capable machines for what most people need to do), BeagleBone, Udoo, Parallela and PixiePro do too. In fact, I guess that you could add to that all the members of the Open Source Hardware Association.

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Re: Now just notepad, and we can write off builtin apps completely.

@OldCrow

In fairness, I don’t think that Windows can be described as a monopoly any more, or Microsoft’s practices as monopolistic. You have a choice, in a way that there hasn’t been a choice since the halcyon days of the 1980s. You can vote with your feet and buy a Chromebook. You can install Linux (or, if you must have something Windowsy, ReactOS). You can have a Mac - or eschew desktop OSs altogether and buy a tablet with iOS or Android.

When Windows was installed on more than 99% of computers then yes, it was a monopoly. But now, as its market share has collapsed below 20% when all personal computing devices are taken into account, no. I don’t think you can reasonably call it a monopoly.

As for MS Paint, it was originally released with Windows 1 in 1985 as a ‘competitor' to MacPaint. Apple quietly put a bullet into MacPaint in 1989 - its useful life long outlived as more capable alternatives became available. The world is awash with simple, capable, paint programs - the only surprise is that Microsoft has taken this long to follow Apple’s example.

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Q. What's today's top language? A. Python... no, wait, Java... no, C

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@kdd

I know others who like it too. Maybe if it had been my first I’d feel the same way, but I was a C programmer, and I got tasked with working on an APL system because of my aptitude for quickly picking up new languages. I might be good at learning new languages - doesn’t necessarily mean that I enjoy using them!

APL isn’t the only language, incidentally, that can use real mathematical divide symbol for the maths operations. AppleScript (and IIRC HyperTalk) can too - but only because it’s very flexible as to the syntax (which can, in fairness, be A Bad Thing, if only because no two developers will write code in the same way)

For example, in AppleScript, for this sum, these are synonymous:

display dialog 10 ÷ 2

display dialog 10 / 2

display dialog 10 div 2 (div is integer only)

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@HmmmYes

I like Perl for short bits of text processing. I use it like a more readable version of sed when I need to share code with a non-programmer. Anything more than that and Perl falls down badly - I had to maintain an application written in tens of thousands of lines of (badly written) Perl code. The original developer had left out the "use strict" pragma because in his words "it didn't run when he put that in". I fixed that, and improved overall reliability somewhat - but it still wasn't as good, or as fast, as it could have been if it had been written in a language which was up to the task in the first place.

As for Java, that's a sad tale. So much potential - and ruined by Oracle. You have to admit* though that Microsoft really ran with it and has, latterly at least, come up with a real gem in C#.

*you don't have to admit of course. You could spew coffee over your keyboard and disagree vehemently. There are some strange idioms in English.

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I love Python. It’s a great language - the new ‘Basic’. It’s great for teaching kids how to program, and it’s great for doing real work in as well but…

…for me my one true love is C. It’s powerful (and, yes, dangerous if abused). It doesn’t hide anything or do anything automagically. Memory is yours to play with as you will. Even my C++ looks like C (which I realise makes it bad C++ - except, sometimes, to other C programmers).

I quite like Objective C and Swift. I’ve been paid to develop in Pascal (which was my favourite teaching-kids-to-code language until I discovered Python) and APL (which was a vile experience). But, in my experience, if you can do C then you can pick up most modern programming languages quite easily. If you can do C well then even Assembly comes fairly naturally.

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Presto crypto: IBM releases gruntier, faster Z14 mainframe

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But if you wait 10 years you can have all this power, and more besides, in your mobile phone running iOS 21 or Android 'Banoffee Pie'

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Radiohead hides ZX Spectrum proggie in OK Computer re-release

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Re: Not saved as an autorun program?

Given the quality of Radiohead's musical output, you'd have thought they could have paid a developer to write them a decent megademo for their Easter Egg, rather than this sub-school-playground nonsense. Bad effort, Thom. Bad effort!

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Ex-NASA bod on Gwyneth Paltrow site's 'healing' stickers: 'Wow. What a load of BS'

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Re: @45RPM

@DJV

Or "The Gullibles" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NdOT9CEjQC8

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Re: @45RPM

@andy 103

You see, that's the thing about conversations. They evolve. They disappear off into little curious sidetracks and eventually come back to the original subject via a circuitous route. Or not at all. That's the fun of it.

@Martin an gof brought up the matter of Hi-Fi and I ran with it. I'm a geek - and yes, I love listening to my stereo. And playing on my computers, with my bikes and my cars*. But your central point was pretty much mine too - "Essentially all that matters is this - if it sounds good to you, great. Nobody else needs to know, or gives a shit, what set up you use. In fact this applies to most other things people discuss on this site - if you're happy using your custom made Linux PC then great for you, if you use a Mac and it works for you, that's fine." Two thumbs up. No point having a fight about this, or much of anything else.

However as to "why do you think they care what you specifically use or do?" er… because some people do. Not anyones kit specifically - but some people are interested in the minutiae of other people's interests. If you discussed your stereo, I'd be interested in what it was because that tells me a little about what informed your opinion. If you're not interested that's cool. Scoot on to the next comment, maybe (if you're lucky) typed by someone less geeky than me.

You'll note by the way, that I didn't say that my HiFi / Car / Computer etc is the best and that anyone who has or uses something different is an idiot. As you say, if "it works for you, that's fine."

The problem, as mentioned elsewhere, is when kids get a thorough education in bullshit and not in actual fact.

* just messing with you. I know you don't like going off on a tangent - accept my apologies.

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It would seem that we are entering a new Dark Age, where facts* are deprecated in favour of a faddy idea or 'alternative fact' which props ups the loudmouth of the day.

@TonyJ and @AC make a good point about how this is harmful when kids are taught this bullshit.

As far as Monster cables et al go though, I just laugh - especially when the music being played is from a digital source**, and especially a compressed one.

I use cheap cable (£7 for 30m), decent speakers (Mordaunt Short), decent separates (mostly NAD, with a little Sony and some Technics for good measure) and keep the cable runs as short as possible. It's a setup which, to my ears, is brutal on bad MP3 rips (better off with a cheap stereo - a good one will throw the compression artefacts into sharp relief!) and sublime with lossless and good quality CD or better recordings.

* in the sense of something which is demonstrably provable or can be shown to have happened.

** not that digital audio is bad - my ears certainly aren't good enough to tell the difference between a good MP3 and a CD, for example - but technically, a good analogue recording on a format like reel to reel should be better than CD because the CD has been sampled (at 44kHz) and the analogue recording hasn't. It's just that, even if the marketing lies of super expensive cables are true, the sample rate will have a much larger impact on the quality of the sound vs. the deficiencies of the lower quality cable.

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This really gets on my tits. There’s no miracle to wellness - it’s all well known science. Eat healthily (well, most of the time), drink in moderation, exercise hard and do something to keep yourself mentally fit (chess, reading, programming…) There are no shortcuts, and putting stickers all over yourself to rebalance your chakra (?) is just as nuts as rearranging your workstation to promote the flow of ch’i instead of rearranging it so that it’s more comfortable to work at.

Still, I suppose, if the only people getting conned are the people who are into this shit, and if they feel better once their wallet has been suitably lightened, where’s the harm?

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Stop trying to make The Machine happen, HPE. It's not going to happen

45RPM
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I've lost count of the times that I've told 'partners' from HPE that I don't give a shit about The Machine. They never seem to believe me though. Apollo, I like. The Machine is boring - it's just a future-washing of todays technology - but there's nothing really futuristic about it.

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When corporate signage goes BAD

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@AC - I’m sorry. You’ll have to explain. What does the sign have to do with LGBT?

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There's an adult shop on the Cowley Road in Oxford which encourages its customers to "Use Rear Entrance". Not a mistaken sign - but I thought I'd mention it anyway.

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Voyager 1 passes another milestone: It's now 138AU from home

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By my calculations, that’s 937,236,841,784 Brontosauruses. A very long way indeed.

Irv Gordon will have to travel 3,200 times further than he already has in order to beat that.

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Swedish school pumps up volume to ease toilet trauma

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Re: For Your Izal Only (Sheena Easton)

@Alister - by the way, I disagree about greaseproof paper. Izal was no way that strong!

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Re: For Your Izal Only (Sheena Easton)

@Alister - I didn't mind the smell of carbolic soap. Actually, I quite like it in a weird sort of way. I'd buy it today if it weren't for the fact that my wife wouldn't be too happy.

Back in the day, of course, the authorities weren't so precious about dirt and grime, and we used to be able to get to, and hide behind, those huge, wheeled, galvanised bins that all the food waste and other stuff from the kitchens got lobbed into. I don't know how big they really were, except that they were bigger than me (at the time). And they always had a weird, yellowy brown, slick at the base - and a very pungent smell of rotting cabbage and other food waste. Not all the evocative smells of childhood are pleasant!

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For Your Izal Only (Sheena Easton)

When I was a lad, at boarding school, the only loo paper provided was Izal Medicated. I don’t think that you can get it anymore - but (for the uninitiated - i.e. the youthful) it was like wiping your arse on a flimsy*.

My particular use for Izal was to (before settling comfortably) fold a little flotilla of ships and float them in the bowl (4 or 5 was generally possible in the bog dock) - and then see how many of them I could sink with my tor-poo-do.

Ashamed of having a shit? Not me. It’s a great way to pass the time - even if all that you have to entertain yourself is a copy of AutoTrader (or a phone with The Register!)

*you don’t know what a flimsy is? Strewth! It’s a thin, crinkly, piece of paper that would be placed behind the ‘original’ with a sheet of carbon paper inbetween. That way, when the ‘original’ was printed with an impact** printer of some description you’d have an instant copy. In any event, a flimsy would be crinkly and uncomfortable to wipe your arse with - and with a high likelihood of Bungle’s Finger*** as a result.

**dot matrix, daisy wheel, golfball - that manner o’ sausage.

***look it up.

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Re: When I was a lad ....

I feel sorry for all the young chaps who’ve only been going to the pub since the smoking ban. Before the smoking ban, we had great fun trying to fill the little metal ashtrays which were thoughtfully screwed to the wall above the urinal.

Actually, I feel sorry for the ladies too - they’ve never had the pleasure either.

Sigh. Happy days.

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Silicon Graphics' IRIX and Magic Desktop return as Linux desktop

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Perhaps I'm a dinosaur - but I prefer these old GUIs to the overly flashy GUIs of today. I like OpenStep, TWM and the IRIX GUI. they're simple, uncluttered, and functional. I'm delighted by this development - and I'll certainly give it a bash on my Linux box (GNUStep, despite interesting but abandoned (and, in any case, too flashy) developments like Etoile, doesn't work brilliantly well).

Fingers crossed that this one is Ronseal (does what it says on the tin)

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Windows 10 S: Good, bad, and how this could get ugly for PC makers

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Re: MS is daft.

I’m delighted to see Microsoft take the high road in building hardware. For years, a major attraction of the Mac was that it was pretty much the only game in town if you wanted really high quality hardware. HP and Dell flirted with high quality machines, before dumping them in favour of shovelling poor quality shit again. If you wanted a high quality, well designed, PC then your only choice was boutique - at even higher prices than Apple charged, and very much harder to find.

I do appreciate that some people don’t really care about a pricey, ‘quality’, well designed computer. They just want a cheap machine that will do the job. My concern here is that ‘cheap’ has to be paid for by someone - and that it’s usually the labourers in the sweatshop who end up bearing the cost. Even at the prices Apple charges, you really wouldn’t want to work in one of their factories (trust me on this!) - but, even so, the conditions are still better than the conditions in bargain basement laptop production lines.

My hope is that people might begin to realise that you can’t actually buy a laptop for £300 - and that £800+ is actually a reasonable starting price, at least if you’d like the people who built the damn thing to be paid. Plus, I imagine that this new Microsoft laptop is as nice to use as it is to look at (and I think that it’s very nice to look at). Cheap laptops are never a pleasure to use. I also look forward to the day when the people who make our clothes, build our laptops and write our software get paid equitably.

In the 1980s people expected to pay the equivalent of £800 in todays money for even quite a basic computer (ZX Spectrum, no storage or screen), and went on up to £6000 equivalent (for a basic IBM XT) and more. That was just what things cost (and you should see how much software was priced at!) Nowadays though, people want something, everything, for nothing.

I understand that there’s a market for a very cheap computer, for schools, for people who can’t afford to pay more. And there’s a computer that fits the bill - and it isn’t made in a sweatshop either. It’s called Raspberry Pi - some assembly required, and don’t expect to play Counterstrike on it.

You gets what you pays for.

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Apple leaks new thinner, lighter iPad ... revenues

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I would buy an iPad but…

I don't want the base model, I want a Pro (to replace my stalwart iPad 2). I don't want a Pro that's long in the tooth and soon to be retired. I'm sure that other prospective iPad buyers are the same. That's not to say that a new iPad Pro will entirely arrest the slide in iPad sales, of course, just that I suspect a new Pro will do more to shore up the iPad than a new base model.

Similarly, and thinking of a model which will make almost no difference to Apple's sales, I'm not interested in the current generation Mac Pro. My 2011 model will have to soldier on a little longer. I'm in the market for a computer - not objet d'art.

Also, can they please keep the iPhone SE up to date in terms of spec? I love the design - but not the (now) out of date electronics.

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Apple fanbois are officially sheeple. Yes, you heard. Deal with it

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@Nuno trancoso

I think that wisdom, and tolerance, come with age (mind you, I would think that). When I was young, I couldn't understand why anyone would support anything other than 'my team'. I'd be riled, indignant, huffy and argumentative with anyone who didn't see matters my way. I'd be bloody rude too.

When I got older, and more mature, I realised that just because something works well for me it might not work well for everyone. I learned to appreciate other people's point of view. iOS, for example, works very well for me, Windows Phone (RIP) looked nice, and Android isn't really my thing (which is to say it looks really nice, and I understand why people like it, but it doesn't work for me).

So yes, there are Apple 'sheeple' whose feelings are hurt when you criticise their preferred platform. But why would you want to hurt their feelings? Insecurity? A niggling fear that they might be right and you wrong? Or the cruelty and immaturity of not being able to live and let live. Similarly, there are people whose feelings are hurt when Linux, Android or Windows are criticised - sheeple for a different brand. It's worth bearing in mind - and then using the knowledge to treat them a little more gently, if nothing more but for fear of wearing your own insecurities on your sleeve.

I still get riled by some things of course (people who criticise the platform they see as their 'enemy' without giving it a good shake down first, people who buy something for reasons of fashion rather than anything else, Donald Trump), but I usually manage to keep mum and my opinion to myself.

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Re: Missed pun opportunity...

Ewe missed an opportunity there, but it was a good pun so I won’t ram it home by bleating on about it. I’m ovine a good time just reading the comments here. Nothing woolly about these gags.

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iPhone lawyers literally compare Apples with Pears in trademark war

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Re: Does anyone remember ...

@Dan 55

Absolutely right. If Apricot can do it then Pear should be able to too. But the precedent doesn't stop there:

Acorn

Raspberry (Pi)

Blackberry

Tangerine (remember them? They made the Oric)

I'm sure that there must be others - I just can't remember them all.

My guess though is that this doesn't come from the top. It's just some dickhead in the legal department who's trying to justify his sad existence. Lawyers. Right up there with PR and telephone sanitisers.

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UK.gov throws hissy fit after Twitter chokes off snoop firm's access

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@Voyna I mor

Shit. You're right. He's Sir Humphrey and I hadn't even noticed.

So which sort of chair do you think TM has?

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I actually wrote to Mrs May about the issue of security and encryption - and I got a reply stating that I was wrong, and that she was taking advice from the head of GCHQ (at the time Robert Hannigan) who was, by virtue of his position, right.

My opinion, shared with many here on this august red-top website, is that we shouldn’t weaken encryption and security since, if we do, we’d be making it easier for the badmash to commit their criminal acts, without making it any easier for the security services to catch the badmash (since they’d just roll their own, uncompromised, encrypted communication tools)

My opinion on Robert Hannigan is that he’s undoubtedly a very good classicist (having studied that subject at Wadham and Heythrop), but that isn’t normally a recognised discipline for developing IT expertise.

My opinion on Theresa May isn’t suitable for publication on this fine, family friendly, forum - suffice it to say that anyone who takes advice from a classicist on matters digital, makes besties with Tronald Dump, or fucks around with Brexit isn’t the smartest peanut in the turd.

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TVs are now tablet computers without a touchscreen

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Re: Oh you optimist

Hear hear. The IoT revolution is either a revolution of insecurity or a revolution of obsolescence. Or both. And even if (and this is a big if), manufacturers decide to keep patching for years (or decades, in the case of white goods - my fridge, hob and oven are all starting their third decade) life is far too short to spend my spare time installing updates on the TV, vacuum cleaner, car, microwave, light bulbs etc.

Fuck that. Count me out.

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Oh snap! UK Prime Minister Theresa May calls June election

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Who to choose?

It seems to me that Labour's best chance of nabbing this is to firmly oppose Brexit and announce that, if they win, they’ll pull us back from the brink and back into the E.U. They won’t though because, like the Conservative Party, they support Brexit.

Personally, I don’t support Brexit - and that means that there’s only one party (in England) that I can vote for - Liberal Democrat. If you oppose Brexit too then I urge you to vote Lib Dem this time round, let them mend the bridge to Europe (and then, if you so wish, vote them out again in 2022, once we’re safely ensconced in the E.U. again). If you’re in Scotland, of course, then all I can do is envy your position - you’ve got an obvious, and powerful, anti-Brexit party in the S.N.P.

Of course, most voters (even ardently anti-Brexit voters) won’t vote Lib Dem, fearing it to be a wasted vote. It probably is too, it's a one in a million shot, but from where I’m sitting it’s still the best option that we have.

If you’re pro-Brexit of course, then you’re spoiled for choice - Conservative, Labour, UKIP, BNP, English Democrats, NF…

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As of today, iThings are even harder for police to probe

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Re: Muppet?

@AC

I think, in your blind desperation to prove the superiority of the OS to which you have pledged allegiance, you might have missed the point.

The point is that, overall, neither Android nor iOS can claim superiority - both are excellent, and both are superior, in their own ways. Where one pulls ahead, the other will surely catch up and possibly overtake soon after. And so the dance continues, and both OSes are driven ever greater. For your purposes, Android is better. For mine, iOS is. Ain't that great?

With regard to the superiority of the file system, I dispute that EXT4 is better than APFS. Actually, in some areas HFS+ has the edge on EXT4 (although in aggregate compared with HFS+, and technically, EXT4 is the better overall filesystem). F2FS, so far, is a bit of a sideshow.

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"I manage several hundred Apple devices"

Is that brimstone I can smell? Or bullshit? At least, if what you say is true, you don't seem to know very much about the devices that you supposedly administer. I pity the poor users who rely on you for support!

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Re: Is bit-rot a real phenomena? - SHOULD

@Duncan MacDonald

Perhaps I've misunderstood your point, or perhaps you jest. This functionality has been part of macOS and iOS for donkeys now. On macOS it's called time machine, on iOS it's just called backup. On macOS you have the option of backing up to a locally connected disk drive, or to a location on the network. On iOS you can backup to a connected Mac or to iCloud.

In either case, you can choose to locate your documents folder and desktop (and more besides) on iCloud - so that everything is kept backed up and synchronised at all times.

Do you want more than this? It's pretty seamless, straightforward and easy to set up…

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@Lee D

You don't actually follow IT much, 'cept p'raps to troll articles about Apple, do you?

Without warning - this has been in the pipe (as far as the public is concerned) since last year. Obviously, within Apple, it's been in the pipe for much longer than that. How much warning do you want? Is a year not enough for you?

Relatively untested? Well, there's been a public beta out for it for at least six months - and you can be damn certain that the t's have been crossed and the i's dotted (j's too) on this one.

Now I fully understand that you don't want to buy Apple. More power to you - more power to all of us. Competition is good, and a better file system for iOS means that Google will have to up its game on Android so you'll win as well from this. The converse applies too of course. This is good. But if you're going to choose a platform other than Apple fer chrissakes have a good reason for doing so - and kneejerk populist bloodymindedness doesn't count I'm afraid. And it especially doesn't count when there are plenty of good reasons that you could have chosen instead.

Muppet.

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iPhone-havers think they're safe. But they're not

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Re: Security through obscurity

Have pity-upvote ;-)

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Re: Any indication

Have an upvote - that’s exactly what I was thinking. That, and what version of iOS are they running?

This story is about as informative as one released by Sean Spicer*

*although, in fairness, with more grounding in actual fact - just not quite enough fact to draw any valid conclusions.

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Boffins crowdsource hunt for 'Planet 9'

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In memory of the late, great, Douglas Adams…

…it can only be called Planet Rupert

Or some such nonsense after a mythical character. Planet God?

Suit yourselves!

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Microsoft nicks one more Apple idea: An ad-supported OS

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Re: Might be time to try . . .

They did it for Macs…

I could argue that Office was Mac first, Windows second. Certainly, Excel and PowerPoint were Mac first, Windows second. As was a GUI version of Word. So the circumstances are a little different from those for Linux.

On my Linux box I use LibreOffice. After all, if you're going to break from Microsoft then you might as well go the whole hog. I use Office 365 on my Windows PC - and it works nicely enough with LibreOffice.

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I don't like the idea of advertising in the OS. I don't like the idea of advertising in any software. But the prevailing opinion is that software, not being tangible, isn't worth anything. It's a race to the bottom, and it's the professional software developers who are being squeezed.

So what should we do? Put advertising, however unwanted, in the software that we write? Starve? Or are users going to start ponying up and paying for the tools that they use?

The free model works for Apple because Apple sells hardware, which pays for all that development work - with cash to spare. The free model works for Google because they can sell data scavenged from their users (oh, and advertising besides). The free model works for some Linux distros because they sell vastly expensive support contracts to enterprise. But other than that, it's a bloody bad time to be a developer.

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After 20 years of Visual Studio, Microsoft unfurls its 2017 edition

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Re: Getting better all the time

I always (okay, mostly. Sometimes, anyway) keep my projects updated for the latest version. Updating a project (in pretty much any IDE that I’ve used so far) between consecutive versions is fairly straightforward, especially if you’re diligent about fixing compiler warnings before they turn into errors down the line. If the versions aren’t consecutive then updating is a pain in the arse (I recently resurrected a project in Xcode that I abandoned a few years back - I sometimes wonder if it’d have been easier just to start from scratch!).

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Getting better all the time

I started in this coding malarkey with Turbo Pascal (2), kept going with Dephi (and, at about the same time, CodeWarrior). In 1999 I started using Visual Studio - and hated it. It was a grind to use, particularly since I was so used to better, more integrated, IDEs with a more complete feature set. I've kept up to date, through MSDN of course, and seen Microsoft's ugly duckling grow into a Swan. Not quite a beautiful Swan yet - there are still some rough edges - but it certainly isn't a chore to use, and it lives happily alongside Xcode in my workflow - just as my Mac lives happily alongside Windows and Linux.

Microsoft and Apple really do have to up their IDE game though - because my workflow, and that of many other developers, now includes IDEs from JetBrains - and JetBrains' IDEs are a joy to use.

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Apple nabs smartphone top spot from Samsung, but for how long?

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What does it matter how many devices are shipped? It's almost, but not entirely, irrelevant. What matters (if anything) is how much profit the devices make (after all, making money is the primary concern for most businesses), and ensuring that customers are happy enough that they'll buy more in the future, ensuring profit then as well as now.

So what was Apples share of the revenue in smart phones? Vs. Samsung? Huawei?

I'd be delighted to sell less as long as I earned more from the sales that I did make.

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I've got a brand new combine harvester and I'll give you the API key

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@AC - Incidentally, I just spotted the way you spelled ‘plough’. Are you Georg Larschied, or one of his employees, in disguise? You scamp you!

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@anonymous coward - something something something a fool and his money are soon parted.

The fact is that third party garages are often just as good as main dealerships, and in many cases (especially for third party specialists) are staffed by people who used to work in, and were trained by, those main dealerships.

And I’m at a loss to imagine how a faulty GPS could ever result in a vehicle being dangerous. Actually, I can think of a way it could be dangerous - but only if the developer / manufacturer of the car were criminally negligent in its design.

My cars are all third party serviced (125k, 250k and 500k miles - a nice sequence, coincidentally, this month) - which I’ll bet is far higher than most (probably more than your Honda) - and which has largely been delivered with the helping hands of a third party servicer. The 500k car wins points for having the most superior design of no electronics except in the radio.

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Given how heavily DRM'd John Deere tractors are, to the extent that John Deere even objects to third party servicing of the damn things (ref: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/nothing-drms-like-deere-farmers-cant-fix-tractors/ and https://www.wired.com/2015/04/dmca-ownership-john-deere), it seems to me that their primary use of tech is to screw the farmer.

I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole.

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Boffins break Samsung Galaxies with one SMS carrying WAP crap

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Devil

Further details please so that we can (ahem) verify this for ourselves!

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