* Posts by BinkyTheMagicPaperclip

759 posts • joined 11 May 2012

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Samsung Galaxy S7: Big brand Android flagship champ

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: No removable battery sucks

Yeah, I really want a landscape keyboard. I've seen a friend's Priv and it does look quite cool.

However, it does need to be rootable, and Blackberry's security centre is useless - it will warn, but not block, attempts to access your data. Also, the Priv's battery is non removable, even if it is quite high capacity..

I also note that Blackberry promised to tell its Priv userbase when Marshmallow was arriving, in 1Q 2016. They've got seven days left.

I don't trust Blackberry to keep their devices up to date, although I was wrong that they'd never update BBOS10 Facebook to support comment replies - they have, just in time for support for it to be dropped by Facebook.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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No removable battery sucks

So does a lack of a physical keyboard in landscape, but there are no Android options for current phones, on that one.

3KmAH isn't that bad, but it is never guaranteed the phone will survive an entire day, or - shock! you may wish to be away from power for a couple of days/forget to plug it in overnight. External battery packs suck. It's vastly less convenient than using spare batteries, together with an external battery charger.

On my 'new' phone, a Motorola Photon Q (2012 Android keyboard phone), it doesn't have a removable battery either (I had no choice, it's the latest *landscape* Android keyboard phone there is). This means I'm going to be modding it to accept a removable, larger battery. Words cannot describe the joy I have at the risk of ruining the phone/battery with a slip of a soldering iron/glue, or the hassle of creating a piece of plastic with appropriate metal prongs to adjust the phone to accept an unmodified LG battery.

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Computers shouldn't smoke. Cigarettes aren't healthy for anyone

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Keyboard hell (@Binky)

It's definitely Fake Friday. I misread 0163 as 163. You're quite right, 0163 is fine.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Keyboard hell

No it isn't, it's Alt 156?

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Only 0.1% of you are doing web server security right

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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It's not exactly ideal

Unsupported by IE, might lock your customers out for an extended period. Yep, I can see that being terribly popular from a business angle. Useful for a banking site, but for everything else?

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BT: We're killing the dabs brand. Oh and can customers re-register to buy on our site?

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Never had much problem with Scan, about the worst is some of the daily special stuff, which occasionally appears to have escaped from a job lot of cheap surplus in China somewhere.

For some more obscure graphics cards, sometimes they'll refund the cost of the card 'minus wear and tear' some time down the line. This is less than optimal if you bought an expensive graphics card two years ago, it fails, and the proposed cost isn't enough to buy a replacement.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Scan are good, I'd also recommend cclcomputers (cclonline) - especially if you want to buy a monitor, with their monitor checking service, and occasionally overclockers. Beyond those it's into specialist shops.

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Stagefright flaw still a nightmare: '850 million' Androids face hijack risk

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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What is the point of this article, other than as advertising?

It's stating the obvious. It hasn't changed. It's not going to change without legislation.

Let's do something useful on mobile phone review scoring out of 10. Take the overall score.

No commitment for at least three years of patching and Android upgrades (if the phone hardware can handle it) : cost in £100s/divided by £100 multiplied by minus two (£100=-2, £400=-8)

No unlockable bootloader and rooting capability : -11

No commitment to provide drivers/developer documentation so third party ROMs can be created for the latest released Android version (after a reasonable timescale) : -11

Manufacturer has form of lying about upgrades that are perfectly possible, technically : -4

No removable battery : -3

Note that doesn't mean they're obliged to enable upgrades to later versions for third parties - provided the latest supported version of Android for that phone can be patched, they get a pass.

If the score is below zero, the entire review is 'This phone got a score below zero. Only idiots buy phones with a score below zero. Are you an idiot?'

Of course the current situation, and the 'your non removable battery no longer holds a charge, better buy a new phone' attitude, keeps people on a two year phone upgrade treadmill.

Google (Nexus) do not get a pass on this one - they only patch phones up to about three years old.

Note that the Blackberry Priv, which Blackberry said would have news about a Marshmallow update 'in 1Q 2016' have seven days left to tell its users when an upgrade will be arriving..

Don't trust any mobile phone companies, don't buy an Android phone that can't be unlocked and rooted, and have Cyanongenmod applied to it. Going to update my 2012 phone to Marshmallow tonight, as it now has an SELinux enabled build, with official Cyanongenmod nightlies not far off. Without that I'd be stuck on insecure ICS.

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How one developer just broke Node, Babel and thousands of projects in 11 lines of JavaScript

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Time Zones vs. Left Pad

No you wouldn't, if using a language other than javascript. Even if it's a fairly simple function, there's the possibility the library includes an optimised version - either using a method you've not thought of, or varying assembly paths.

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Mystery Kindle update will block readers from books after Wednesday

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: I applied the big update to my Mk2 Paperwhite a couple of weeks ago.

Fine on my 3G keyboard, not that it helps with your loss of books..

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Pornography, violence and JG Ballard: High Rise, the 1970s' internet

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Awful

Saw it on Saturday with a film group, and the general opinion was not positive.

It starts strongly, the visual style is striking, I particularly dig the 70s style, and there are some great scenes. However, it needs a severe editing - it drags, changes pace suddenly for no apparent reason, jarringly includes a music video, and is inconsistent about what is happening outside the high rise.

I'm sure that parts of it are highlighting various parts of society, social hierarchy, and social climbing. I don't care : it's not a good film. Worth watching once, but not more than that. It could be halved in length and improve over its current state.

Watch The Lobster instead, it's excellent.

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Facebook, WhatsApp farewell BlackBerry

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Rubbish, basically

The Facebook app has been fairly useless on BB10 for at least six months as it doesn't support comment replies. Blackberry have done nothing about this. No sympathy - I seriously considered a BB Passport, but went in the end with a modded Android keyboard phone with XPrivacy on it, so once I've got round to configuring it, I can still run the FB app without it sucking all my data off the phone..

In the meantime there's Face10 for (paid) Facebook support on BB, but you're stuffed with Whatsapp..

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'Millions' of Android mobes vulnerable to new Stagefright exploit

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Cyanogenmod time

Go to xda developers and read the thread for your particular phone, to find a ROM and see if it is both up to date and stable.

Pros : may get later code, possibly more secure

Cons : could be less stable, as CM does not necessarily have access to all documentation and resources the manufacturer has. May lack specialist functionality (i.e. my previous phone when moved to CM drops FM Radio, HDMI support, and the camera support is not as good. It was worth it considering the manufacturer ROM stops at ICS, whereas CM is currently up to Lollipop..)

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Slow clap

Oh well done chaps, reliably exploiting a months old vulnerability and making it easier for the really bad guys to wreak havoc. I suppose their argument would be that this forces the manufacturers to fix their ROMs, but really, does anyone believe they care?

It's just going to cause issues that might otherwise have taken longer to arise.

Not that it matters personally, as Cyanongenmod patched it months ago, of course there's now the new Snapdragon exploits to patch..

Sooner rather than later there will be a legal requirement to patch years old firmware, or being more realistic about capitalism, there will probably be a remote kill switch to brick non compliant hardware and force the purchase of new shiny hardware with different bugs.

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NASA celebrates 50-year anniversary of first spaceship docking in orbit

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: And in three years ...

I'd still rather see lots and lots of probes rather than very expensive bases that probably won't provide as much science or pretty pictures, and will almost certainly lead to astronauts dying out on Mars (being unable to return) if they're sent at the moment.

I'm not saying a base on the Moon or Mars wouldn't be cool (it would), but I'd far sooner we landed on more comets, asteroids, and moons, plus instruments in space. I wonder if a rover on Venus will ever happen..

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Linus Torvalds wavers, pauses … then gives the world Linux 4.5

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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'they'll never make one like that again'

Really?

http://www.modelfkeyboards.com/

http://www.pckeyboard.com/

:)

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: PS/2 Mice

I have to admit I usually draw the line at ball mice these days, although I may need to use one for the ancient 486 used for particularly old games - it's only got a serial mouse port. At least they don't need to have a super special mouse mat, though, unlike the optical mice I have which throw a fit if their mouse mat isn't a uniform shade of black.

There's a quite nice three button Logitech mouse systems protocol mouse lying around somewhere, plus one of the worst mice ever : the wedge shaped IBM mouse. I have that one for giggles, although it's basically usable. The claw grip mouse they released a few years later was much better.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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All my systems are still using PS/2 mice, at least indirectly

True, in some of them it's via a PS/2 to USB converter, but that's a lot cheaper than replacing a perfectly good eight port KVM with one that supports USB.. My main system does have a USB mouse on too, and don't get me wrong, USB is awesome for hot plugging different keyboards, USB sticks, game controllers, printers..

Not to mention on a (fairly limited) number of platforms these days, it's more reliable to rescue a system via PS/2 than USB.

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Computer says: Stop using MacWrite II, human!

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: OS X Server

OS/2 and Windows could do that all years (1990) before OS X was a twinkling in Apple's eye. Granted, in the early days it required a special NIC PROM and used RPL rather than PXE, but it did work. Of course the difference was that Mac hardware is much more standardised than PC hardware.

Boot times weren't horrendous, but swapping over the network wasn't a good idea..

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: War with the idiots of IT

They weren't 'stopping the students from getting work done', they were stopping them from running unlicensed software that didn't meet the word processing standard used elsewhere, risks prosecution, and most probably didn't fall under the academic licensing programme, costing real money.

If you were a draughtsman, in a team of ten, and felt that although the supplied Autocad LT would technically do the job, full Autocad was occasionally quite useful, is it still appropriate to risk a visit from FAST by sticking on an unlicensed copy for all members of your team, and diddle Adobe out of 14,500 GBP a year?

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I beg you, please don't back up that secret directory full of photos!

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Never forget the words of Coupling

It's supposed to be a comedy, but it's really partially a documentary.

There are several stages of living alone, the final stage is : leaving porn out on display.

Don't leave the porn and the toys out, and always have a separate logon to your computers. You don't want a friend to suddenly ask to use your laptop/desktop to do a presentation, with your logon full of pr0n in the documents folder, and when the browser is used to browse to the bbc, it sends them to the other type of BBC..

On Android, a blank file called .nomedia is your friend to stop the gallery scanning directories you don't want scanned.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Be careful with screensavers

I decided as a favour to a friend to help her load MP3 files on to her ancient MP3 player (iRiver I think, years ago). This was a bit fiddly, but all sorted, everyone happy.

Chatting to her, computer in the background decides to go into screensaver mode, set to display pictures. Friend and her girlfriend hiking, friend and her girlfriend on holiday, friend's girlfriend on floor in artistic topless shot.. *do not look at the computer, do not look at the computer, deny you ever saw it*. Unfortunately I think my expression wasn't quite perfect, but we both engaged in plausible deniability, and it fortunately wasn't the first in a long sequence of more explicit photos.

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Google emits Android N developer preview early to smoke out bugs

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: N = "Not For You"

Root it, stick on a third party ROM.

My four year old Motorola phone has an unofficial Cyanongenmod Marshmallow build already..

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Everything bad in the world can be traced to crap Wi-Fi

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Icon says it all

Is DRM really that unreliable? Fecking annoying to use, yes, but not necessarily unreliable. The only DRM I can think that is actively broken is a number of games blocked from working in Windows 10, because they did dodgy things in earlier versions of Windows.

Not that it annoys me at all that I've had to shell out twenty odd quidx2 to enable my non HDCP monitors to an HDCP source, via an HDMI splitter that 'accidentally' doesn't verify the HDCP path. Or, that I've had to spend over 200 quid for a more expensive HDCP box to connect to a CRT projector allowing it to play Blurays..

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Dirty data: Tech-heavy Thames Valley scores big in adultery index

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Is extra-marital sex really a problem?

There isn't anything wrong with it, but this article is driven by a site called illicitencounters, so I think you can guess as to how much clearance has been obtained from the person you meet's partner(s)

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Google Project Zero reverse-engineers Windows path hacks for better security

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: win32? in 2016? really???

The UNC path is not applicable because here we're talking about filesystems - you know, the storage areas that aren't accessed directly before mounting them to a drive letter or relative path.

Where you thinking about networked resources instead, perhaps? That doesn't apply either - true, it's possible to seamlessly access previously shared resources, but you don't get access to all of the filesystem unless there's a root level share, or you're an administrator and administrative shares haven't been disabled.

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Building a fanless PC is now realistic. But it still ain't cheap

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Generally I go for decent, quiet fans

Tried quiet years ago and did it spectacularly wrong - noise proof case (keeps all the lovely heat in), and two fanless GPUs. It was far more effective to use a case with lots of mesh on it, and expensive quiet fans (the noise profile on the Noctua fans is excellent, but they are fifteen quid each). My main system has at least three fans, plus two GTX480 fans. There's a fair bit of white noise, but it's a comfortable noise.

Compare that to the Powermac, or the SGI O2 box, with one fan apiece, and noisy and horribly noisy respectively due to their fan profiles..

My retro gaming PC only has a PSU fan, and that's inaudible.

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AMD poised to insert chips into Japanese slot machines, collect coins

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Finally something decent

I've given AMD a repeated knocking as being useless in practically all markets except the low end consumer integrated CPU and graphics market.

The G series processors are another area where they score, see the APU2C4 at PC Engines : http://www.pcengines.ch/apu2b2.htm. The prior APU1d4 was a bit shit, featuring a slow AMD processor (G T40e), that although faster than their previous Alix boards (AMD Geode), actually worked out slower due to a lack of integrated cryptography accelerator.

The APU2c4 contains a GX-412TC, 64 bit CPU with up to 6W and built in AES-NI. In short, it's actually usable for embedded apps, and appears to be cheaper than finding a small footprint Atom based Intel system (which are not fanless). I'm impatiently waiting for it to be in stock..

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Confused by crazy crashes? Check your Linux kernel virtual Ethernet code

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Why do we accept flaky network hardware?

Riiiight - so you want absolutely all networks, from the most basic home network, to the most complex enterprise network to be installed by a professional. That's not going to fly with Mrs Miggins linking her router and two computers at home.

For all its faults <n>BaseT Ethernet works well for most people, 10Base2 was an abomination.

I'd also point out that USB in no way compares with Ethernet, especially given its length limits..

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Is Facebook about to get a Virtual Reality check?

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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They're probably being realistic.

I know some people thought the new age of VR was a 300 pound headset, bung it into your PC, job done.

The reality is 500 (Oculus) - 700+ (Vive) quid on the headset, then for most people at the very least 300+ quid on a new graphics card, but probably a new system (800 quid plus). Running two displays at 1080x1200 at a *minimum* of 90fps does not come cheap.

Computing has finally found something a bit more mass market than high end video editing and scientific and engineering analysis to stretch a system (gaming hasn't needed really high end systems for years, due to being held back by consoles). If Intel and Nvidia have any sense, they'll be marketing the Broadwell-E chips release, and Nvidia's new architecture in Q2/Q3 as ideal for VR. You'll need all the power you can get..

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Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge: Betting on VR with a dash of Vulkan

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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'Apple has demonstrated that battery packs are what people want and will pay a premium for, if they want to lug additional charge.'

Really? Really, really? Alternatively, have they demonstrated that because NONE OF THEIR DEVICES have a removable battery, the consumer has zero choice..

It does not take minutes on a decent phone, on my ancient Xperia Pro I can swap out the battery in under 20s, including shutdown time. It then does, yes, take another minute and a half to boot back up, but that's what you get from running Lollipop on a 2011 phone.

With my next phone, I'm already planning to mod in a larger capacity battery, and include the ability to swap replacements in.

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Plane food sees pilot grounded by explosive undercarriage

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Guess I picked the wrong week to give up sniffing glue..

Glad to see there are sensible procedures in use

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Intel shows budget Android phone powering big-screen Linux

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: "Low-end == 2 Gb"

Yeah.. I'm currently in the process of upgrading my phone from one with 512MB, to 1GB. I was hoping it'd last a few years!

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Apps. People want mobile phones to run mobile phone apps.

There are a number of non Jolla phones that run Sailfish, but no-one does, because the app provision sucks. Same with Blackberry.

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Microsoft hoses down Windows Server hardware support change fears

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Oh look, I don't care.

Already running on a fully virtualised Xen system with a Linux dom0, and Windows 8.1 and FreeBSD HVM domUs with hardware passthrough, so Windows is already on a virtual CPU.

Will probably move to Windows 10 for my gaming system at some point, don't know if I'll bother with my desktop.

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Sir Clive Sinclair in tech tin-rattle triumph

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Anyone remember the Atari Lynx?

It looks closer to a Playstation, or the Tapwave Zodiac (still have one of those, such lovely hardware). The Lynx (which I also have, specifically the smaller, later revision) only has one set of direction buttons and is a lot more bulky, not least because it can run on six AAs.

The Lynx was a lot better, full stop. Possibly the Z80 in the speccy was faster than the 6502 in the Lynx for some operations, but the plethora of custom support chips led to some excellent games for the Lynx. It's still the only handheld which runs Chips Challenge; there was a speccy version of that too, but I bet it wasn't much cop. Gates of Zendocon, California Games, Slime World, Awesome Golf. Great console.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Hard to take seriously

The C5 wasn't a horrendous idea, but the execution was horrid. It was a pedal assisted transportation device that could be ridden without a license, so theoretically there was a market for it.

Unfortunately it was completely impractical and frightening to drive in traffic. My uncle gave it a quick go and found it far too scary when cars were around.

If Sir Clive had managed to make it closer to car sized (say sub Smart car size) with a riding position that meant you weren't dwarfed by other cars, who knows, it might have managed to get somewhere.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: What's The Point?

Convenience, and accuracy. I dug out my old MSX and soldered up a cable to connect a proper tape player (lost the data recorder). First problem : 'mono' is supposed to be the left channel, but one game tape had recorded it on the right.. Then, Manic Miner loaded It looks as I remembered it, it played as I remembered it, the sound - the sound was appalling. The load time, five minutes of waiting. Probably easier to run in an emulator.

Likewise, I have a retro gaming PC - it has an S3 Savage 4 (accurate DOS scrolling), a Soundblaster AWE32, and two different Roland music modules. Running games with the proper Roland music and responsiveness of the original system is better than running it in DOSBox, but a lot more difficult. In that case it's worth making the effort, at least for me.

Take Commander Keen 4, though, and I can't tell the difference between the real thing, and DOSBox emulation. Eventually it won't be worth using the original hardware, plus emulators can save state, useful with difficult games.

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Tandy 102 proto-laptop still alive and beeping after 30 years, complete with AA batteries

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Yep - ZX81

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When asked 'What's a .CNT file?' there's a polite way to answer

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: What's a .cnt?

OS/2's help is pretty good, but it's not designed to be used from the command line using 'help'.

I suppose I have some sympathy if you were using OS/2 1.0, which is garbage, but with the later IPF (.INF) format help the documentation is great, and fully searchable. 'print' will point you in the direction of print01.sys (print02.sys for MCA machines). Printers themselves follow the design of the WPS interface, been a while since I configured one in OS/2 1.x though.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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you're using Linux, aren't you?

Try BSD instead, the help is actually usable.

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Streetmap's lawyer: Google High Court win will have 'chilling effect’ on UK digital biz

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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There were only ever two reasons to visit streetmap

Genuine OS maps, and elevation data. Seems to be impossible to find the elevation data now, unless I'm confusing that with multimaps, which now appears to be Bing.

It doesn't support a scroll wheel - even openstreetmap supports that. It's true that for very small streets google maps is a bit lacking, but that's rarely needed, even on foot - which isn't possible, because there's no app for openstreetmap.

Compare that to Google Maps, where it's possible to navigate an unfamiliar foreign city, and there's no competition.

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Argos offers 'buy now pay in 3 months' deal

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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I quite like Argos

Provided you research the item, they sell some decent items, and they don't censor the reviews - so it's entirely your fault if you buy a piece of Elizabeth Duke jewelry with thirty one star reviews..

Order and pay online. Walk in. Give reference number. Walk out with item. Total time spent : a minute.

I recently had an issue with a solid wood self assembly bookcase - it looked ok, the price was right, and it needed to be a particular size to hold game consoles. The reviews said that it was ok, but that the components could be cut more accurately. I took a punt on it anyway, and found just as I was finishing making it that one spar was more a parallelogram instead of a rectangle!

Rang up support, and they agreed that I could go to my local store with only the faulty part. Checked the new item with a tape measure, swapped for the faulty one, and completed the bookcase. I'm very happy with it; it's cheaper and better built than an Ikea offering. Their website also contains all the manuals, so it's possible to see precise dimensions before purchase.

Probably going to buy some vac bags from there tomorrow, and they're handy for printer ink too.

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Women devs – want your pull requests accepted? Just don't tell anyone you're a girl

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Motorola Droid 4, off ebay, or if you're willing to either get out the soldering iron or bung some people in Bulgaria, Spain or Korea cash to modify/supply a Motorola Photon Q to have a SIM slot added. That's the latest Android landscape keyboard phone, though.

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Bank fail: Ready or not, here's our new software

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: It's not that nobody wants...

Bullshit. That may be true if you're producing something unimportant like Facebook, but for things like banking there is absolutely enough time if enough personnel and money are thrown at the problem. Computer platform changes have long lead times, so that can be planned. Regulatory changes? Usually signposted well in advance. New browsers? Released in beta months before official release. Mobile access? Browsers are a known quantity, as are the mobile platforms.

There is time, it's just that people don't want the loss of revenue by releasing their software later.

It may be that some older software suffers by not being developed with a view to unit testing, but that seems a little better than more modern software which is constantly a least a bit shit, looks like it has never been properly unit tested, and has definitely never had more than a cursory user test.

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Ducks, Lord of the Rings, movies and maths: The GCHQ Xmas puzzle solutions revealed

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: Get on with your job.

They did in fact create the puzzle on their own time - this was reported on Radio 4, and probably other places.

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You've seen things people wouldn't believe – so tell us your programming horrors

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Limited languages.. this was fun to diagnose!

Possibly my first professional coding temporary job (wasn't even at University) was to input and analyse NHS staff workplace injury reasons, plot graphs and suchlike for one particular trust.

The correct way (this was very early 90s) would be to either program it properly, or use Excel. This was the NHS, however, so there was no budget. I had a Compaq DOS PC (486?) - this included GWBASIC, which I probably should have used, but instead it was strongly suggested I use an epidemiological analysis program.

On the face of it, this was a good idea - it was actually quite functional, with input forms, graphing, and a complex interpreted scripting language. I set to coding, and it worked - up until a certain point, when it crashed. It crashed executing a return statement, and analysing the source showed no errors.

The reason I couldn't see an error, was because there wasn't one. The interpreter had a limited stack of statements - as each new line was loaded from the script, the oldest line dropped off the top.. (this was not really documented) The error occurred when the return statement tried to return to a line that was no longer in the stack. Additionally, when the limit of the stack was pushed, it did some slightly odd things.

I ended up using it within that limitation, calling it via menus written in GWBASIC. It was at least in use for a few solid years before it started to hang on a different machine. I was asked back in as a favour, and found that if run under Windows in a DOS Window, and switched from full screen and back again, it stopped hanging and continued. I have no idea why.

Not perfect, but give me a break, it was a summer job whilst I was still at college, and my course was engineering rather than coding.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Many mistakes, probably

I'll own up to two, but coding is not my main activity, so it could be worse

1) Never, ever, *ever* do your own date calculations

Years ago I wrote a web log file processor in Python, to track visitors, and do everything webalyser did (except for using cookies) at much less cost, plus various custom stuff. To check log files it took the current date, processed a file, then added 24 hours to the time and looked for that file.

This worked fine for about four months, and then it all stopped working. Co-incidentally, this was the Monday after the clocks went back.. Add 24 hours, still Saturday! Add 24 hours, still Saturday...! Add fix to add 25.5 hours, and use the date functions properly to go to the next day in future.

Don't get me started on people who think they can handle time zones without a library : clue, you probably can't, and yes some places have half hour time zones.

2) Don't believe the specification

Doing nameless things with MAPI and Exchange, my code worked for months and then bombed. Various debugging revealed that it was failing to find a field, hit the exception handler, and fell over because this case wasn't correctly handled. It wasn't handled because the SDK (written by Microsoft), communicating with Exchange (written by Microsoft) informed me that this parameter was 'mandatory' and would always be there. Which it was, until suddenly it wasn't. (I think it was PR_something_RTF - rich text is supposed to be included, but only plain text was in rare instances - a handful of messages out of thousands).

I'd handled errors on every other field - except that one, because it would 'always be there'

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Samsung: Is gadget lust still a thing in 2016? Nope

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: It's their own fault

As to swapping batteries : I have two spares. My 2011 phone has never needed more than three batteries a day under very heavy usage (light usage is less than one battery), and a swap out takes less than twenty seconds.

A lot of the battery and CPU appears to be eaten by running K9 Mail using push e-mail; I may have to investigate other offerings.

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BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
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Re: It's their own fault

Obviously I am just 'someone on an Internet message board' but the lack of a micro SD card slot and a removable battery are major factors against buying certain phones, unless the battery is truly, staggeringly huge (practically none are).

I really want a landscape Android phone with a keyboard (don't like the Priv : too expensive, not landscape, no removable battery, not rootable. Considered the Blackberry Passport, but BBOS10 is dead, and I want to absolutely control what each app can access). This will replace my 2011 Android landscape keyboard phone, and I'd pay a reasonable amount (300-400 quid) for it.

It doesn't exist. So, I'm importing a 2012 landscape Android phone from the US, then going to either whip out the soldering iron, or send it to someone in mainland Europe to mod a SIM card slot into it, then I'm going to mod it to support a removable battery, and flash a third party Marshmallow ROM plus XPrivacy on to it.

This is a huge pain in the arse, but I don't like keyboardless phones. Swype just isn't as good, although it's technically impressive.

I don't want Apple's vision of computing, and there's not the same range of apps in other non Android platforms. Tried flashing Sailfish onto an Android phone - useless, as it has no Android app support unless it's an official Jolla phone. I really, really, wanted to like Blackberry, but it's obvious it's a dead platform. If they put Android on the Passport, and made it rootable I'd consider it - the battery is so huge it should last an entire day, even under truly heavy use.

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